Campaign Crawlers

Will Conservatives Speak Up for Cuccinelli?

Succumbing to McAuliffe's war of lies isn't cutting it.

By 10.23.13

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 50 years ago, in the landmark case of Griswold v. Connecticut 381 U.S. 479 (1965), that state governments do not have the legal power under the U.S. Constitution to ban contraceptives. That means that any attempted state prohibition on contraceptives would be unconstitutional and legally inoperative.

Yet, former Democrat National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe, running for governor this year in Virginia against conservative Republican Ken Cuccinelli, is telling women in the state that they must vote for him and the Democrats, or else Cuccinelli and the Republicans will take away their contraceptives. Then there will be no more sex in Virginia without babies.

Never mind that neither Cuccinelli nor any other Republican has even proposed any such preposterous thing. McAuliffe and the Democrats think women in Virginia are too stupid to know what their constitutional rights are, and that they can be played for fools into voting Democrat. McAuliffe, whose career has been as a top Democrat Party fundraiser, thinks that with the millions and millions he has raised from liberal Democrats nationally he can smear Cuccinelli and the Republicans into oblivion.

After all, what media in Virginia is telling voters anything about Griswold v. Connecticut? The Washington Post and the Richmond Times Dispatch are themselves arms of the Democratic Party, subscribed to by people who are all too happy to be misled into casting an uninformed Democratic vote on false pretenses. The Post and the Times-Dispatch are not going to say anything to contradict any Democratic campaign theme. The party spokesmen and women who work there made a career decision as teenagers to go into "journalism" as good cover for promoting the liberal party line, not exposing it. That is why they exhibit such arrested moral and intellectual development.

No, if Cuccinelli and the conservatives want to prevail in Virginia, they will have to raise the money themselves to tell the truth, or otherwise spread the word about the Democrats' cynical and manipulative campaign strategy. And it is getting late for that. In Griswold, the Supreme Court struck down an 1879 Connecticut law that prohibited the use of "any drug, medicinal article or instrument for the purpose of preventing conception." That is how current the issue is.

Today, in America, if you are poor and supposedly unable to pay for your own contraceptives, the government will pay for them for you, as Rich Lowry explained in a column in February 2012, when Democrats were successfully exploiting women in Virginia on this phony, dishonest issue during the presidential race. Lowry wrote:

[A] vast government apparatus exists to provide poor women access to contraceptives, from Medicaid and community health centers to Title X. There are roughly 4,500 Title X-funded clinics around the country. They are required to provide free birth control to the poor and subsidized birth control to people with incomes between 100 percent and 250 percent of poverty."

The Wall Street Journal reported the burden on poor women to pay for the cost of contraception March 6 of last year: "Prescription birth control pills generally cost between $15 and $50 a month, and Wal-Mart and Target sell generic versions for as little as $9." As a result, despite the fearsome Taliban Republicans, the Guttmacher Institute reports that 99 percent of women who have been sexually active in America have used birth control.

Yet, no one, not even the Taliban Republicans, has raised any challenge to this responsibility of the taxpayers to pay for the contraceptives of poor women, despite this minimal cost. Rather, it was Republicans who broadly expanded funding for childcare for poor women who work. And it was Reagan who pioneered stricter enforcement of child support for women from absent fathers.

On our current course, soon enough the taxpayers will be paying for Viagra, so poor older men can keep their game on. Now there are some real costs. Come on, taxpayers, don't you want to keep love alive?

The War Among Women
I receive in my own home in Loudoun County, Virginia almost daily mailings purporting to tell me "just the facts" about how my own Republican Delegate, a young woman named Barbara Comstock, is fiercely against health care for women. Ms. Comstock's opponent, an older Democrat woman named Kathleen Murphy, reports that "Barbara Comstock voted to block cancer screenings," even though Ms. Murphy would not be alive today without early detection of her own cancer. You get it? The allegation is that Barbara is trying to kill Kathleen.

But the truth is no one in the entire history of America has ever voted to block cancer screenings for anyone, which only brain dead ultra-partisan Democrats could believe. What Ms. Comstock voted to block is taxpayer funding of the Planned Parenthood abortion industry, in accordance with the view of the overwhelming majority of non-Democrat Americans that taxpayers should not have to finance abortions.

Democrats like to entertain the fantasy that only Planned Parenthood provides cancer screening for women. So any vote to reduce any taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood is a vote "to block cancer screenings" for women. That is supposed to be part of the "Republican War on Women," even though, since at least half of all aborted babies are girls, Planned Parenthood can be equally described as conducting its own Democrat genocide against women, especially African-American women.

Democrats are doing to Cuccinelli and Republicans in Virginia today what they did to Romney last year. They are making up the positions that Cuccinelli and the Republicans are running on, and then running against those straw men positions. Obama ran alleging that Romney's tax plan was a tax increase on the middle class, to finance a tax cut for the rich. But Romney's tax plan actually involved the largest middle class tax cut in American history, which would have probably eliminated federal income taxes for the middle 20% of income earners entirely.

The Republican Party today has two wings, the Conservatives and the Moderates, or RINOs (Republicans In Name Only). The Democratic Party today has two wings as well, the Marxists, and the Scammers (DINOs, or Democrats In Name Only). McAuliffe does not have the intellectual depth to even be a Marxist. He is the current active leader of the Democrat Scammer wing.

President Obama' s War on Women
But if you look at the economic numbers, it is President Obama and his Democrats who have been conducting the actual war against women. Women suffered a net loss of 354,000 jobs during Obama's first term. But employment of women during Reagan's first term soared by 4,460,000. During Obama's first term, 4,458,000 women dropped out of the work force altogether, 13 times the number during Reagan's first term. During Reagan's first term, real, median, weekly incomes for women skyrocketed by 32.1%, compared to 6.6% during Obama's first term.

Job's for African-American women jumped by 15.1% in Reagan's first term, almost 6 times the meager 2.6% in Obama's first term. Employment of teenage, female, African Americans collapsed by 19.1% in Obama' s first term, compared to a decline of only 1.5% in Reagan's first term.

The poverty rate, which covers primarily single women with children, has rocketed up under President Obama by one third, to 16.1 %, higher than when the War on Poverty started 50 years ago. Child poverty has skyrocketed as well, to over 20%, with 8 million children growing up in poverty today.

Real median household income has declined by nearly 8% during Obama's first term. That is the equivalent of the middle class losing one month's pay a year. Income for the bottom 20% of income earners has similarly declined. Only the top 20% has enjoyed income gains under President Obama's failed economic policies, which is why inequality has been rising throughout Obama's entire Presidency.

Just the opposite under President Reagan, by sharp contrast, declining incomes for average and low income workers, which had persisted for several years when he entered office, were reversed, and incomes for everyone, from the bottom 20% to the top 20%, rose for the rest of his Presidency. George Washington University Professor Henry R. Nau explained in the Wall Street Journal on January 26, 2012, "the U.S. grew by more than 3% per year [in real terms] from 1980 to 2007, and created more than 50 million new jobs, massively expanding a middle class of working women, African-Americans and legal as well as illegal immigrants. Per capita income increased by 65%, and household income went up substantially in all income categories."

Obama likes to whine that the economy was already in recession when he entered office. But that was more than five years ago, and the recession ended more than four years ago, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research. So almost all of Obama's first term was after the recession ended. But Reagan faced double-digit inflation, double-digit interest rates, and soon double-digit unemployment when he entered office. Just six months into his term, the worst recession since the Great Depression resulted from the tight money and record interest rates that broke the inflation, and it lasted through almost his entire second year. Still, by the end of Reagan's first term, the boom that resulted from his pro-growth policies vastly outperformed Obama's first term, as described above.

Cuccinelli's Economic Boom for Virginia
Cuccinelli is campaigning on bringing those same pro-growth Reagan policies to Virginia. Counting both federal and state corporate income taxes, the total corporate income tax rate in Virginia today is 41%. That is higher than in Communist China, where a corporate income tax rate of 25% prevails. It is higher than in the leftist European Union, which has cut its corporate tax rates to below 25% on average. It is higher than in formerly socialist Canada, which has cut its corporate rate to 15%.

Cuccinelli proposes state tax reform that would cut the Virginia state corporate tax rate by one-third, from 6% to 4%. That would leave Virginia with the lowest corporate tax rate among all 43 states that still have corporate income taxes. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that 75% of the corporate income tax burden is actually borne by labor in reduced wages. EU studies conclude that almost the entire corporate income tax burden (92%) is borne by labor. Cuccinelli also proposes to cut the state individual income tax rate by 13%, from 5.75% to 5%.

Cuccinelli would finance these income tax rate reductions by reducing loopholes, with the economic growth from the rate reductions, and with a cap on the growth of state spending equal to the rate of growth of the state population plus inflation, which has averaged 3.2% over the last 10 years. State spending would continue to grow every year by 3.2% on average, just not as fast as the 7.4% to 9.2% as during the three non-recessionary periods since 1984.

The savings from that spending cap would then be used to cut the state income tax rates every year while Cuccinelli is Governor. By reducing tax rates, the growth of spending, and burdensome, unnecessary, anti-growth regulations, Cuccinelli would be following Reagan's economic policies exactly.

Indeed, if the state spending cap was followed by Cuccinelli' s successors for two more gubernatorial terms, the state income tax could be phased out entirely, all while continuing 3% plus state spending growth each year. Virginia would then join the 9 other states with no state income tax at all, including booming Texas, and rapidly growing Florida and Tennessee. That would greatly boost the economic fortunes of women, just as during the Reagan years.

The Democrats’ monstrously false and silly Republican War on Women theme is meant to distract from such real substantive issues in the campaign. It is meant to demonize Reaganite social conservatives out of politics altogether. McAuliffe is running in favor of gay marriage, gun control, and unrestricted abortion for all. Somehow, the McAuliffe/Democrat argument is that the old-fashioned traditionalists are somehow extremists, which is actually a contradiction in terms, if you think about it. Old-fashioned traditionalists are the opposite of extremists, if you think about it. But McAuliffe and his Democrats are calculating that a majority of Virginians today can't think about it.

Photo: Creative Commons/Gage Skidmore

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About the Author

Peter Ferrara is a Senior Fellow for the Heartland Institute, and Senior Policy Advisor on Entitlement Reform and Budget Policy for the National Tax Limitation Committee. He served in the White House Office of Policy Development under President Reagan, and as Associate Deputy Attorney General under President George H.W. Bush.