Political Hay

Political Hay

The Closing of Andrew Cuomo’s Mind

By 1.24.14

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s rant against conservatives last week is not just another MSNBC moment. Unlike the cable channel’s talking heads whose incivility toward non leftists has led to multiple anguished on-air apologies in the past year alone, he is a public official, elected to serve every citizen in his state. And given the Democrat’s presidential aspirations, his words should have special weight. So for him to say on the radio that “extreme conservatives who are right-to-life, pro-assault-weapon, anti-gay” …. “have no place in the state of New York” is significant.

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Political Hay

The Cousins Udall

By 1.16.14

The Udall clan is a distinguished Western political family, the Kennedys in cowboy boots (though hiking boots might be a more apt metaphor nowadays). They have been a presence on the regional political scene for four generations, with various antecedents serving in state legislatures, mayoral offices, and on state supreme courts dating back to 1887. Two of the family’s leading lights were Morris “Mo” Udall (1922-1998), Democratic Arizona Congressman who represented the state’s 2nd Congressional District from 1961 to 1991 (and a serious primary challenger to Jimmy Carter in the 1976 presidential cycle); and his brother Stewart Udall (1920-2010), who previously held the same seat (1955-1961), relinquishing it to serve as Secretary of the Interior through the entire Kennedy and Johnson administrations (1961-1969).

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Political Hay

Maria Shriver’s Rehash of Feminist Whines

By 1.16.14

In her nearly 400-page feminist screed about the plight of women in America, “A Woman’s Nation Pushes Back from the Brink,” Maria Shriver and the Center for American Progress have fired the first volley in the pivotal campaign of 2014 that will determine whether the President’s leftist agenda will proceed forward unimpeded or whether the Constitution and common sense will prevail. It is no small matter that the document also propels Hillary Clinton’s goals forward and seeks to revive a moribund feminist movement’s struggle for relevance. Served with a dollop of celebrity and a high-powered roll-out — including President Obama promoting the report with Shriver at the White House — the skill of the marketing effort greatly exceeds the heft of the report. It is long on glamour and glitz and short on substance and scholarly depth.

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Political Hay

Clay Aiken to Run?

By 1.14.14

RALEIGH, N.C. — A sure sign of our adolescent approach to politics in the United States is that wrestlers, stand-up comedians, and reality TV stars can run for office — and win. The latest chapter in the ongoing saga of celebrities-turned-politicians could unfold in North Carolina.

Sources have informed the Washington Blade that Clay Aiken, of American Idol fame, has met with Democratic political operatives to weigh a potential bid for Congress in the Tar Heel State’s 2nd Congressional District, located in the central part of the state near Raleigh.

Aiken exploded onto the reality TV circuit in 2003 when he placed second on American Idol. (As an aside, one must admire the power of reality TV when a second place finish propels one to stardom.) Since his victory, Aiken has released numerous albums and become something of a 21st-century pop culture personality, in that unusual vein of celebrity made possible by reality TV and YouTube.

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Political Hay

Fear and Loathing in New Jersey

By 1.10.14

The scandal of The George Washington Bridge and Chris Christie is one of the most overhyped political dramas of the last decade. We live in an era where political vindictiveness and a bully government seem ubiquitous—the IRS scandal, TSA, NSA—and gross human error is epidemic—Fast and Furious, Benghazi, Hurricane Katrina. The Christie scandal has gotten coverage due to a slow news week rather than the actual size of the offense.

While this doesn’t bode well for trust in government, the real story is about how the image of Christie has been radically altered in our celebrity culture that builds people up in order to destroy them.

After a crushing defeat by President Obama in 2008, with the further losses of both the House and the Senate, Republicans were in desperate need of a hero. Christie rose through the ranks, winning a governorship in an overwhelmingly blue state, despite a third-party candidate. This gave Republicans their first net gains in governorships since 2003.

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Political Hay

His Finest Hour

By 1.9.14

In his Thursday morning press conference regarding “Bridgegate,” New Jersey Governor Chris Christie demonstrated the sort of leadership and responsibility-taking that has allowed him to be a popular Republican governor in a very blue state and the current front-runner for the Republican nomination for president (to the dismay of many conservatives).

In short, the scandal revolves around Christie’s deputy chief of staff, Bridget Anne Kelly, contacting a Christie-appointed Port Authority official named David Wildstein and telling him to cause traffic problems for the town of Fort Lee, NJ. It is believed, though not proven in the e-mails uncovered by the Bergen Record, that the purpose was retaliation against the Mayor of Fort Lee, Mark Sokolich, for not endorsing Christie in his most recent election.

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Political Hay

The Left and Power Inequality

By 1.9.14

“We are called to put an end to economic and social inequalities that threaten to unravel the city we love.”
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio in his inaugural address

“[Americans] may not follow the constant back-and-forth in Washington or all the policy details, but they experience in a very personal way the relentless, decades-long trend that I want to spend some time talking about today. And that is a dangerous and growing inequality and lack of upward mobility that has jeopardized middle-class America’s basic bargain — that if you work hard, you have a chance to get ahead…. I believe this is the defining challenge of our time.”
President Obama, December 4, 2013

His name is Matt.

Matt E. His last name not given, presumably for fear of retribution.

Matt is a teacher in Chester County, Pennsylvania. And he is a victim of Power Inequality.

President Obama and New York’s Mayor de Blasio have decided to focus on “income inequality” as the major issue facing Americans, with Obama calling income inequality “the defining challenge of our time.”

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Political Hay

Don’t Fire Melissa Harris-Perry

By 1.7.14

No, don’t fire MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry.

MSNBC now admits that “MSNBC has had an editorial and script review process in place” when it comes to their shows. Meaning: apparently the network saw the controversial Romney adoption piece ahead of time that has now backfired on Harris-Perry… and approved it.

The better thing to do? Ask this question.

Why is liberalism racist?

That liberalism is racist is well beyond question.

A horrific history of supporting slavery, segregation, lynching, and the Ku Klux Klan has morphed today into the relatively pacific if no less poisonous perpetual race-card playing of modern progressives.

The recent incident involving MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry, in which the MSNBC commentator and others on a panel mocked the adopted black grandchild of former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, has now elicited a tearful apology from Harris-Perry to the Romney family. Mitt Romney, in the classy style that is typical of his family, gracefully accepted the apology.

But all of this raises another question.

The question?

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Political Hay

Karl Rove and the GOP Socialists

By 1.2.14

Happy New Year.

It’s war.

While America was celebrating the holidays, the Wall Street Journal ran a page one story the day after Christmas headlined as follows:

GOP, Business Recast Message
Republican Leaders, Allies Aim to Diminish Clout of Most-Conservative Activists

The story said this right up front:

Meanwhile, major donors and advocacy groups, such as the Chamber of Commerce and American Crossroads, are preparing an aggressive effort to groom and support more centrist Republican candidates for Congress in 2014’s midterm elections.

Translation?

Karl Rove (i.e., architect of the American Crossroads SuperPAC), the Chamber of Commerce, and the Washington GOP Establishment have declared war on the Reaganite conservative base of the Republican Party.

Welcome to the 2014 election.

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Political Hay

Governor Trump?

By 12.26.13

Is Donald Trump the conservative version of Nelson Rockefeller? The Rich Guy with unimaginable name-ID, talent and endless energy who would love to be President of the United States and possessing what some will say is all but one credential?

That missing credential being major elective office?

Coincidentally, Mr. Trump, who recently met with New York Conservative Party leaders making the case for a Trump gubernatorial candidacy, is, like the late four-term New York, Governor Rockefeller, a life-long New Yorker. The real deal. In Trump’s case hailing from the precincts of Brooklyn and Queens.

Like Nelson Rockefeller, Donald Trump has frequently been connected to presidential aspirations. And like Rockefeller, most observers presume that to be elected president, getting the GOP presidential nomination is the way to go.

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