Monday, March 31, 2008

Black Conservatives, McCain Service Tour

Can McCain Win PA's Black vote?

This will be tomorrow's topic: Can McCain Win the Black Vote? The short answer is that he can't win a majority of the Black vote -- in any state -- but we can do a lot better than Republicans have in the past. In the past generation, Republican presidential candidates have won only about 10% of the Black vote.What if McCain can win 20%-plus of the Black vote in battleground states like Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Ohio, and Michigan? Then he would win the electoral votes in all of them. It's that important.There's some evidence that McCain will do better in Black communities than any Republican since Richard Nixon in 1960 (who won 32% of the Black vote in his race against John F. Kennedy). Frankly, McCain has more in common with most Black who vote than either Caucasian Hillary Clinton or mixed-race Barack Obama.

More to follow on Tuesday.

Patrick Hynes, an important operative on the McCain Campaign sent me the following. (If you want to get regular updates from Patrick, you can do so by e-mailing him at: He's terrific.

Throughout this week I will be filing blog posts from the McCain campaign’s bio tour.

I have three posts up today:

“Biography as Character Witness”



I sure would appreciate it if you decided to link to these posts, and some of the upcoming posts later this week.


Note From Steve: My very popular quote from Sam Adams is below.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Sam Adams, Meet Hillary, Barack

"If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." - Samuel Adams, speech at the Philadelphia State House, August 1, 1776.

Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, please "go home from us in peace." We're tired of you and your vision of the a once-free people's dependence on government.

PA Onliners Can Help McCain

All onliners who want to know how to help John McCain should go to an important resource: On that site, Kathy Morrison has many suggestions on how you can help build you own small (or large!) coalitions for Senator McCain. I'll review some of her points here on Monday -- with specific emphasis on Pennsylvania. Hope you all had a great weekend!

Obama Scandals Proliferating

Barack Obama - The Wizard Of Oz
By Evelyn Pringle
28 March, 2008

The most trusted leaders of the Democratic party, such as John Kerry and Ted Kennedy, ought to be ashamed of themselves for supporting Barack Obama. With use of the internet, a fifth grader could connect the dots to show a picture of a guy who was picked up in college and carried up the political ladder by a corrupt gang of influence peddlers.

John McCain is just drooling waiting for Obama to become the nominee so that he can come out with the trail of dirt that the Democratic party is too afraid to reveal this late in the in the game.

If nominated, Obama will not survive a month when faced with the Republican attack machine.If he becomes the nominee, the web of corruption leading to Obama's rise to power that this investigative journalist was able to untangle in less than three weeks, will be front page news right up until election day, handing the Republicans their only chance in hell of winning the White House.

Instead of the leaders of the Democratic party doing their homework, a small group of investigative reporters in Chicago will be credited with exposing the corrupt backbone of Obama political career and the mainstream media need only follow their lead if the Democrats hold him out to be a viable candidate.

The list of reporters deserving of credit for doing the investigative work that should have been done by the leaders of the Democratic party before they got behind Obama, includes, but is not limited to, Chicago Sun-Times reporters, Tim Novak, Dave McKinney, Fran Spielman, Chris Fusco, Natasha Korecki, Steve Warmbir and Lynn Sweet. Chicago Tribune reporters especially deserving of credit include Jeff Coen, Bob Secter, John Chase, Virginia Groark, Rick Pearson, David Jackson, John McCormick, Mickey Ciokajlo, Rudolph Bush and Dan Mihalopoulos.

This article is the first in a series that will give the details of Obama's rise to fame. As for the most recognized allegation against Obama, that helped slumlords operate in Chicago, while accepting their campaign contributions, it's true.

Obama was a member of the political machine that helped a whole gang of slumlords funnel local, state and federal tax dollars, over the backs of poor people in need of affordable housing, to line their own pockets and fund the campaigns of politicians in positions to recommend and award contracts.

The Davis Miner Barnhill & Galland law firm, where Obama worked for nearly a decade, served as a hub for a slew of slumlord deals, many that benefited the firm's founder, Allison Davis, and Obama's claims that he knew nothing about the inner workings of this small firm, represent an insult to the intelligence of the American public.

Tony Rezko was Obama's political Godfather. Obama received his first contributions of $2,000, to launch his political career as a state senator on July 31, 1995, from Rezko. Obama started out saying that Rezko only raised $50,000 or $60,000 for his political career but after a year of lying his way through the primaries, the latest total he gave to the Sun-Times and Tribune during interviews on March 14, 2008, adds up to $250,000.For a year, he also minimized his relationship with Rezko by telling the media that he only had dinner or lunch with Rezko one or twice a year.

But when confronted by Sun-Times reporters during the March 14 interview, with the allegation that an FBI mole saw him coming and going to Rezko’s office often and that three sources said he talked to Rezko on the phone daily, Obama changed his tune.

Now the story is that he may have talked to Rezko daily at times during campaigns but sometimes he went for a whole month without talking to him. “I have to say we're talking over the course of 10 years,” Obama said, “there might have been spurts where I talked to him daily.”But then he added: "There might have been stretches over a month where I wouldn't have talked to him at all."

This story is a far cry from the picture Obama gave to the public of him and Rezko meeting once or twice a year, and he never did respond to the allegation by the Times reporter that an FBI mole “saw you coming and going from Rezko’s office a lot.“Without Rezko's fundraising, Obama would not have been elected to the Illinois senate, or the US Senate, and he would not have sold the books he wrote about himself because like the Wizard of Oz, Obama is nobody special.

Even with Rezko's massive fund raising, Obama could not beat former Black Panther, Bobby Rush, in his 2000 bid for a seat in Congress. And the only reason he won the US Senate race was because his viable opponents had to drop out due to the public airing of personal scandals. Beating Alan Keyes is hardly a victory to brag about.

The media needs to quit grouping all the Obama backers under the name Antoin "Tony" Resko because the list of contributors to his political campaigns includes the names of many individuals and entities with their own agendas.The trail of corruption involving the people raising money for Obama's political career stretches from the city of Chicago to the Illinois tollway to the O'Hare airport all the way over to Iraq.

And testimony in Rezko's corruption trial reveals that an equal number of Democrat and Republican crooks benefited from all the moneymaking schemes.Rezko is not a Democrat; he's an equal opportunity profiteer. He supported President George Bush and attended a Christmas party at the White House

in December 2003, at the same time that he was a top fundraiser for Obama's US Senate campaign. Rezko co-hosted a $3.8 million Chicago fundraiser for Bush in 2003, and on December 9, 2003, he donated $4,000 to Bush, as a "self-employed businessman," and gave another $2,000 on December 19, 2003, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Prior to backing Rod Blagojevich for governor of Illinois, Rezko threw his money behind Republican candidates for governor, including George Ryan, who was convicted of doling out leases and contracts to cronies and sentenced to prison for more than 6 years.Rezko then switched horses and chose Blagojevich in 2002 and Obama has supported Blagojevich, even when his administration was embroiled in corruption investigations.

Recent testimony in the Rezko trial by his co-conspirator, Chicago businessman, Stuart Levine, explained that Rezko had plans for Blagojevich to be Presidential, not Obama. However, anybody following the trial knows that Blagojevich is more likely to be headed to the "Big House" rather than occupying the White House.

Obama's entering into real estate deals with Rezko, while it was public knowledge that he was under investigation for funneling illegal contributions to Illinois politicians, was not a "boneheaded" move, it was motivated by pure greed. While knowing that he would get caught up in a major scandal, Obama went ahead with the deal because he and his wife wanted that mansion, with four fireplaces, six bathrooms, and a wine cellar, period.

On March 16, 2008, the Boston Globe added an interesting twist to the story when reporting that Donna Schwan, of MetroPro Realty, which listed the mansion and lot next door for the owners, "said it is her recollection that the Obamas may not have made the highest bid, and that other bidders may have matched Rezko's bid," but the willingness of both buyers to close in June 2005, "was decisive."

Which logically means had Rezko not been willing to buy the lot in June, the deal was off.According to an article by Edward McClelland in the February 1, 2008 Salon Magazine, when asked who approached her about the house, Donna Schwan told Salon, "I honestly don't remember. Tony Rezko lived across the street, so he'd been interested in the lot."

Any claim that Obama was unaware of the investigations into the corrupt dealings of Rezko with Illinois politicians in June 2005 is ridiculous. On February 15, 2005, the Chicago Tribune reported: "Gov. Rod Blagojevich long has vowed to purge the Illinois tollway of cronyism, yet two of his closest friends and political advisers have links to food vendors awarded lucrative contracts to operate inside the toll road's sleek new oases, government records show.""The Subway sandwich shops and Panda Express Asian restaurants now being installed in the tollway's seven revamped rest stops are controlled by firms with strong ties to the food-service empire of Antoin "Tony" Rezko, a Blagojevich confidant who has seeded the governor's cabinet with former business underlings."Christopher Kelly, Blagojevich's chief fundraiser, "who also recommended the tollway's executive director for his job, is an investor in at least one Rezko-controlled food firm," the Tribune wrote. On March 16, 2005, the Tribune reported that:"City officials alleged Tuesday that a minority contractor at O'Hare International Airport acted as a front for a firm run by Antoin "Tony" Rezko, a top adviser and fundraiser for Gov. Rod Blagojevich...."Rezko, a member of Blagojevich's kitchen cabinet of advisers, has come under increased scrutiny in recent weeks following questions about his links to operators of new tollway oasis franchises. The revamp of the oases is a showcase project for the Blagojevich administration."On May 15, 2005, the Sun-Times reported that the accusations by his father-in-law that Blagojevich doled out jobs for campaign contributions had "resulted in dozens of grand jury subpoenas being sent to the governor's office, his unpaid advisers, agency directors and his top fund-raisers."

Among those subpoenaed for documents, sources told the Times, were "Blagojevich's biggest money men, Christopher Kelly and Antoin "Tony" Rezko."On May 20, 2005, less than a month before Obama bought the mansion, the Tribune reported that Resko, "has had a business relationship with First Lady Patti Blagojevich for eight years, the governor's office acknowledged Thursday."

Six month before Obama bought the strip of land from Rezko's "wife" to enlarge his yard, on August 28, 2005, Natasha Korecki reported in the Sun-Times that, "there's so much corruption to investigate in the Chicago area, the FBI is adding manpower."

Robert Grant, FBI Special Agent in Charge, told the Times that he had reorganized the bureau to add a third public corruption squad, giving Chicago the largest corruption unit in the country, even bigger than those in New York and Los Angeles."It is the second time in two years the FBI in Chicago has expanded its public corruption force," Korecki noted.On November 6, 2006, the Times asked Obama why he did not reveal the land deal with Rezko before it was reported by the Tribune stating: "Why did you not publicly disclose the transaction after Rezko got indicted?"

"At the time, it didn't strike me as relevant," Obama answered. It seems like a lot of events were not relevant a couple months before he announced his candidacy for president. In the November 2007, Chicago Magazine, James Merriner described a "fashion show" that took place in the first week in November 2006, to benefit St Jude Children's Research Hospital, which he said, "attracted little if any media coverage, which may have been exactly as its organizers and sponsors had hoped."

"The invitation to the affair," he wrote, "offered a veritable guidebook to political influence in Illinois, much of it centered on one St. Jude benefactor, Antoin "Tony" Rezko.""Just three weeks earlier," Merriner pointed out, "Rezko had been indicted on charges of extorting kickbacks from businesses seeking contracts from the Blagojevich administration."

The "fashion show" was chaired by Rita Rezko, co-chaired by the Governor's wife, Patti Blagojevich, and Michelle Obama was a special guest that day, according to Merriner.Two weeks after the "fashion show," on November 17, 2006, the Sun-Times reported that Blagojevich's wife Patti got nearly $50,000 from a real estate deal in late 2002 involving Rezko.

In terms of dollar amounts of campaign contributions directly from Rezko in Illinois, the top four earners were, the now deceased President of the Cook County Board, John Stroger, Blagojevich, Chicago Mayor, Richard Daley, and Obama - in that order.

Rezko was the head of Stroger's campaign finance committee at the same time that he served on Obama US Senate finance committee. When it came time for Stroger's reelection campaign, in the midst of the erupting Rezko scandals in the media, on April 8, 2005, the Tribune reported that Stroger "has selected beleaguered businessman and political powerbroker Antoin "Tony" Rezko as one of the honorary chairs of his campaign fundraiser next month."

Stroger appointed Rezko's wife Rita to the Cook County Employee Appeals Board, which hears cases filed by fired or disciplined workers, at a part-time salary of $37,000 a year.According to documents filed in the Rezko corruption case, this was Rita's sole income when she supposedly came up with a $125,000 down payment and secured a $500,000 mortgage to buy the $625,00 lot next to Obama. Less than a year after Obama bought his strip of land, Rita sold the rest of the lot to attorney Michael Sreenan, and made a profit of more than $50,000.

On February 27, 2007, the Sun-Times pointed out that Obama's "new neighbor, Michael Sreenan," had contributed $5,000 to Obama's campaigns. Less than a year after buying the lot, Sreenan put it up for sale for $1.5 million in October 2007.

Of course John Stroger will not be answering any questions about corruption, or any other matter, because he died on January 18, 2008. His former chief of staff and godson, Orlando Jones, will not be talking either because he was found dead of self-inflicted gun wounds in September 2007, "just as a corruption inquiry targeting him was heating up," according to a September 7, 2007 report by CBS News channel 2 Chicago.

"Jones left his position in county government to create a lobbying firm in association with Tony Rezko, who has been indicted on fraud charges," CBS reported.Cook County Commissioner Tony Peraica told CBS that Orlando Jones’ death raised many questions about the Cook County president’s office. “Some of these matters Jones was involved in that are currently being investigated by the FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office are reaching to the highest level of county government,” Peraica said.

Obama endorsed John Stroger's son, Todd Stroger, in his bid for Cook County Board President after his father died. Todd was in the news as recently as March 24, 2008, when the Sun-Times published a front-page article reporting that his cousin Donna Dunnings, the county’s new chief financial officer, was receiving a 12% pay increase.

Dunnings’ salary will be the largest increase of any county employee, with the average increase being around 5%. She will make nearly $160,000 with the pay increase, or roughly $5,000 more than her predecessor made at the job, according to the Times.

Mayor Daley endorsed Obama immediately after he announced he was running for president and in return, Obama endorsed Daley's reelection for Mayor right smack in the middle of major federal investigations of corruption in the Daley Administration. Obama's ties to the corrupt Daley machine began when he was dating his wife Michelle and she brought him into the fold. Valerie Jarrett, the deputy chief of staff to Mayor Daley, hired Michelle as her assistant in 1991. Daley made Jarrett the chairman of the Chicago Department of Planning and Development and Michelle worked as her assistant in that Department during 1992-93. From there Michelle moved up the political tiers to the University of Chicago and ultimately got an overnight pay raise from about $121,000 to close to $317,000, after Obama became a US Senator, as a vice president at the University of Chicago.Susan Sher, was corporation counsel in the Daley Administration when Michelle was hired back in the early 1990s, and Sher is now Michelle's boss at the University of Chicago, according to the April 22, 2007 Chicago Tribune.Shortly after Obama entered the US Senate, Michelle was also handed a position on the board of TreeHouse Foods. Wal-Mart is the largest customer of TreeHouse Foods. Factoring in stock options and other payments, the value of her compensation package for serving on the board in 2006 was $101,083, according to the Tribune report.

On May 14, 2007, during a meeting with the AFL-CIO in New Jersey, Obama was asked about Wal-Mart and he said: "I won't shop there." Michelle resigned from the board of TreeHouse eight days after husband said he would not shop at Wal-Mart, CBS News reported on May 27, 2007.

When it came time for Obama's US Senate campaign, Valerie Jarrett became the campaign finance chairman and worked hand and hand with fellow finance committee members, Rita and Tony Rezko, and his former boss at the law firm, Allison Davis, in fundraising endeavors. The committee raised more than $14 million, according to Federal Election Commission records. Tim Novak reported in the Sun-Times on April 23, 2007.

Jarrett is now the CEO of Habitat Co, a real estate development and management firm which manages the housing program for the Chicago Housing Authority, the entity mandated to administer public housing, and she serves as an unpaid advisor to Obama's Presidential campaign.Mayor Daley's brother Bill also became an Obama advisor. Mayor Daley's chief image defender, David Axelrod, is a top strategist for Obama's campaign and he was also the media consultant for Obama's US Senate campaign.

On April 1, 2007, Dick Simpson, a former Chicago alderman who is now chairman of the political science department at the University of Illinois at Chicago, told Ben Wallace-Wells in the New York Times: “David Axelrod’s mostly been visible in Chicago in the last decade as Daley’s public relations strategist and the guy who goes on television to defend Daley from charges of corruption”.

The scandals involving the Daley administration have no beginning and no end. In January 2004, the Sun-Times published a three-part series exposing widespread corruption in the Hired Truck Program and revealed that some companies were being paid for doing little or no work and that some had mob connections or were tied to city employees.

On January 25, 2005, the Associated Press reported that trucking company manager, John Cannatello, the 16th person charged in the scandal, was charged with getting $6.6 million in city hauling work "by giving campaign contributions and cash to officials and falsely claiming his firm was eligible for jobs set aside for women-owned businesses."

According to the article, city officials said the Hired Truck program, "which at its height doled out $38 million worth of work in one year to contractors without bids, was designed to save taxpayers money by outsourcing hauling jobs that otherwise would require the city to buy trucks and insurance."

On June 6, 2006, the Sun-Times reported that the brother-in-law of Cook County Commissioner, John Daley, was sentenced to 18 months in prison "for taking about $5,400 in bribes to steer city business to a Hired Truck company."Of course John Daley is another brother of Mayor Daley.

On January 6, 2006, the New York Times ran the headline, "Corruption Scandal Loosening Mayor Daley's Grip on Chicago," and reported that a "wide-ranging federal investigation into what prosecutors describe as "pervasive fraud" in hiring and contracts at City Hall has led to 30 indictments, including two senior administrators close to the mayor, and a dozen cabinet-level resignations.

The Tribune broke the hiring scandal on April 29, 2005, after federal agents carried out an all-night raid of Daley's patronage office at City Hall and less than three months later, Robert Sorich, the patronage chief in the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs, and three former city officials, were arrested and charged with fraud to rig city hiring for 12 years.

During the criminal trial, prosecutors produced a list of more than 5,700 politically connected job applicants, and Patricia Molloy, a longtime secretary in Mayor Daley's office, testified that aides kept track of applicants and their political sponsors during much of Daley's time in office, according to a July 7, 2006 report by Rudolph Bush and Dan Mihalopoulos in the Tribune.

City officials testified that they "were heavily involved in politics and directed city workers and aspiring public employees to knock on doors and work the phones for political candidates endorsed by the mayor," the July 7, 2006 Tribune report noted."Witnesses who marshaled pro-Daley political groups testified that they took campaign orders from top Daley aides," the Tribune wrote, "and later got jobs and promotions from the mayor's office for loyal and effective political workers."

Sorich and three others were convicted on July 5, 2006, of carrying out what prosecutors described as fraud in hiring, "complete with sham interviews, rigged test scores and color-coded charts to track political sponsors," according to the July 6, 2006 Sun-Times.Chicago attorney, Michael Shakman, whose federal lawsuit against the city led to anti-patronage decrees, told the Tribune on July 7, 2006, that Daley was to blame for the political hiring system.

"You have to lay the responsibility squarely at the feet of Mayor Daley," he said. "These [defendants] are his people, who never would have thought of doing this without his approval."At the sentencing hearing in November 2006, US District Judge David Coar told Sorich: “If I thought that by sentencing you I could stop this type of hiring corruption in the city of Chicago, I would throw this building at you…. But it won’t," the Tribune reported on November 21, 2006.

Obama is a political psychopath. He exhibits no shame, no matter where his money comes from. On September 5, 2007, the New York Post reported that, "Alexi Giannoulias, who became Illinois state treasurer last year after Obama vouched for him, has pledged to raise $100,000 for the senator's Oval Office bid.""Giannoulias is so tainted by reputed mob links," the Post noted, "that several top Illinois Dems, including the state's speaker of the House and party chairman, refused to endorse him even after he won the Democratic nomination with Obama's help."

If the Democratic party places Obama on the ballot against John McCain, Democratic voters will have no choice in this election. Once the whole truth becomes public, and it will the minute he becomes the nominee, no honest American could support sending Obama and his corrupt gang of cronies to the White House.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Who Exactly Is Barack Obama?

Inquiring Pennsylvanians want to know . . . as do other Americans, but apparently we're out of luck.

The emerging narrative about Barack Obama is that there is no coherenet narrative that defines the man. I'm very uncertain what his religious views are, other than that he's suggesting he's a Christian -- one probably more like "spiritual advisor" Rev. Wright than unlike him. Obama has said that he's "been praising Jesus for 20 years." What exactly does that mean? Does he adhere to John 3:16 or not? (I believe he'd find that famous Biblical verse too exclusionary.) The national media put almost no pressure on Obama, so it depends on people like us to ask the hard questions -- even though we're certain Obama will never answer them. Right now, he's on a bus tour in Pennsylvania, one that's mostly a lovefest designed to let the candidate avoid any difficult moments. It's shameful, but it's the media world we inhabit.

Friday, March 28, 2008


This weekend (Saturday and Sunday), I'll be posting about Obama's pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, and his anti-Italian remarks. As you may know, Rev. Wright blames what he calls the "Roman . . . the Italians" for the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Does Barack Obama disagree with those statements? Who knows?

When he talks about the America-hating, race-baiting Rev. Wright, Obama chooses his words very carefully. He says he "disagrees" with the Pastor on several things, but he never identifies where his dissent lies. Somehow, no matter how despicable Wright's remarks are, Obama still continue to see him as his "uncle" and his "spiritual advisor."

Obama's refusal to disown and to repudiate this evil man calls into great question where the candidate stands on hate-speech.

When the time came for Obama to repudiate Wright and separate himself from the so-called "church," he instead turned on his Rhetoric Machine. He gave a speech about "race," a bunch of generalities that avoided any full repudiation of Jeremiah Wright.

Right now, the Obama campaign had placed a muzzle on wife Michelle, whose distaste for her country reflects the views of her long-time pastor, Jeremiah Wright. The pastor himself appears to be in hiding, unwilling to explain or apologize for his hate-filled sermons and publications.

Yesterday, I attended a meeting of Democrats (and at least one Republican, me) supporting the candidacy of a young man for the Pennsylvania House. About half the people there were Americans of Italian descent. They were aware of many of Wright's offensive statements, but were not aware that he had singled out Italians (Wright spoke of their "garlickey" breath) for condemnation. I didn't have the heart to tell them.

My wife is of Italian descent, as are our daughter and several grandchildren. Obama owes them -- and everyone else in Pennsylvania -- a full explanation, but I doubt it will be forthcoming.

Who exactly is Barack Obama -- and to what degree does he agree with his demagogic Pastor?

PA Democrats Uneasy About Obama

Later today (Friday), I'll be posting about a fascinating meeting I attended last night -- one with more than 100 moderate-to-conservative Democrats. There was great unease about the coming nomination of Barack Obama as the Party's nominee for President.

In the meantime, you'll be interested in the following -- about Obama's desire to raise taxes on most Americans.

Barack Obama appears to be proposing a tax increase for all Americans who make more than $75,000 per year. Key paragraphs:

Maria Bartiromo on CNBC's "Closing Bell" asked, "Who should pay more and who should pay less?" Predictably, the politician chose to talk about who would benefit from his higher tax plan, not who would get socked the hardest. But from his answers it sounds like the "wealthy" in his mind are those making more than $75,000.

"I would not increase taxes for middle class Americans and in fact I want to.... provide a tax cut for people who are making $75,000 a year or less,'' he said. "For those folks, I want an offset on the payroll tax that would be worth as much as $1,000 for a family.

He is also proposing to raise the capital gains tax, but refuses to say by how much:

Barack Obama thinks higher taxes are a good thing
Andrew Malcolm and Mark Silva, Los Angeles Times, Top Of The Ticket Blog
March 28, 2008

Illinois Sen. Barack Obama went after the "We're not paying enough taxes to the government" vote today during a television interview in New York.

First, he said the Bush tax cuts ought to die. He likes that top marginal rate of 39%. Although the non-partisan National Journal recently declared him the most liberal of the 100 senators, Obama denied being a "wild-eyed liberal," which wasn't what the Journal called him, but it sounds good on TV where everything moves by so quickly.

Maria Bartiromo on CNBC's "Closing Bell" asked, "Who should pay more and who should pay less?" Predictably, the politician chose to talk about who would benefit from his higher tax plan, not who would get socked the hardest. But from his answers it sounds like the "wealthy" in his mind are those making more than $75,000.

"I would not increase taxes for middle class Americans and in fact I want to.... provide a tax cut for people who are making $75,000 a year or less,'' he said. "For those folks, I want an offset on the payroll tax that would be worth as much as $1,000 for a family.

"Senior citizens who are bringing in less than $50,000 a year in income, I don't want them to have to pay income tax on their Social Security. And as part of my overall approach to housing, I actually want to provide an additional 10 percent mortgage deduction, a credit, mortgage interest credit, for those who currently don't itemize."

"Why raise taxes at all in an economic slowdown?'' Bartiromo asked. "Isn't that going to put a further strain on people?"

"Well, look," said Obama, "there's no doubt that anything I do is going to be premised on what the economic situation is when I take office.''

Obama said, "I'm going to be sworn in in January -- we don't know what the economy's going to look like at that point."

He was asked about the liberal tag. "I believe in capitalism and I want to do what works,'' the senator replied. " But what I want to make sure of is it works for all America and not just a small sliver of America."

"Obama’s completely disingenuous dodge on whether he would raise taxes during a time of economic slowdown is belied by his vote earlier this month," said Alex Conant, a spokesman for the Republican National Committee. "Obama’s claims to the contrary, his votes to raise taxes on people earning as little as $31,850 are straight from the Democrats’ tax-and-spend playbook."

Steve says: Barack Obama talks regularly about doing away with "tax cuts for the wealthy." Apparently, the "wealthy" include working families with incomes above $32,000. Apparently, his tax plans do not go after the truly wealthy -- multimillionaires like John Kerry, Jay Rockefeller, Ted Kennedy, Nancy Pelosi, Hillary Clinton, and -- of course -- Obama himself, who has made millions on his books.

In other words, people who have large fortunes will do just fine under "President" Obama, while working families will be hit hard.A significant part of the "Bush tax cuts" consists of eliminating the marriage penalty, increasing the tax credit per year, and doing away with the "death tax." There's no indication Obama wants to continue such tax reductions for working families. Basically, his "economic plan" is to pay off low-income voters at the expense of everyone else.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Obama's Pro-Terrorist Minister, Church

When exactly does Barack Obama get held to account for being a 20-year member of a racist, anti-American, Israel-hating church? When does he stop using the excuse that he "wasn't there that particular Sunday?" Who exactly is Barack Obama? And what precisely does he believe? Does anyone know the answer to those questions? Over the next four weeks Obama will be spending a lot of time in Pennsylvania, and it's time for journalists in this state to start asking the hard questions they'd use with any other presidential candidate.

Obama’s Pro-Hamas Church
Election 2008:

It’s bad enough that Barack Obama’s church took sick joy in 9/11 for "racist white America" supporting "Zionists." Now we learn it also is a mouthpiece for anti-Israeli terrorists.

Last July, Trinity United Church of Christ reprinted a Hamas manifesto written by a terrorist fugitive wanted by the FBI. It was published across two pages of the "Pastor’s Page" section of the church bulletin.

Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s name is copyrighted at the bottom of the pages. For those who don’t know, Wright is the anti-American, anti-Israeli bigot that Obama has consorted with for the past two decades.

In his newsletter, the preacher gives Mousa Abu Marzook a platform to justify the Palestinian terrorist group’s denial of Israel’s right to exist, while defending strikes against Israeli targets.
Marzook is identified in the church bulletin only as the "deputy of the political bureau of Hamas, the Islamic Resistance Movement."

In fact, Marzook was kicked out of the U.S. several years ago after the U.S. declared him a specially designated terrorist.

The Palestinian was indicted in 2004 for conspiring to funnel millions to Hamas to carry out kidnappings, bombings and other attacks on Israel. Believed to be hiding in Syria, he remains a fugitive.

Even if Wright didn’t know Marzook was wanted by the government, Hamas has been designated a terrorist group since 1995, blacklisted by a Democrat administration.

Wright had to have known from headlines that Hamas targets innocent civilians in pizza parlors and buses for suicide bombings, eviscerating children and elderly with fireballs laced with nails and ball bearings. These are not warriors, but terrorists.

Obama, for his part, says he is shocked— shocked! — that his church would support Hamas.

"I certainly wasn’t in church when that outrageously wrong piece was reprinted in the bulletin," he said in a carefully worded statement that denies only his attendance and not his prior knowledge of the bulletin.

The Democratic front-runner for president seems to think if he just claims "not present," he won’t be linked to his longtime church’s radicalism. But a history of 20 years of church attendance and close ties to Wright make that impossible.

When videos showed his pastor blaming America for 9/11 and damning it to hell, Obama insisted he did not attend service on the days those particular sermons were delivered.

Obama also pleaded ignorance about Wright last year honoring anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan with a "lifetime achievement award," even though the church featured Farrakhan on the cover of its magazine and held a gala in Chicago to celebrate his "greatness."

This didn’t come out of the blue. Wright and Farrakhan go way back. In the 1980s, they traveled to Libya to pay homage to terrorist leader Muammar Qaddafi.

Yet, Wright is the man Obama says has been "like an uncle" to him all these years.

It strains credulity that in all their conversations, he remains in the dark about his radical ties.
Yet now that Obama knows Wright sympathizes with terrorists, Obama continues to defend him and his church.

"This is a pillar of the community," Obama said, "and if you go there on Easter, and you sat down there in the pew, you would think this is just like any other church."

Maybe any other church in Gaza or the West Bank. But certainly not in post-9/11 America.
Who does Obama think he’s fooling? He needs to sever ties with Wright and his church, regardless of their support.

If he can’t stand up to them, how can he stand up to terrorists?


Gallup Poll: “Sizable proportion of Democrats” would vote for John McCain over Clinton or Obama

· Clinton supporters who would vote for McCain over Obama = 28%
· Obama supporters who would vote for McCain over Clinton = 19%

Gallup says, “The data suggest that the continuing and sometimes fractious Democratic nomination fight could have a negative impact for the Democratic Party in next November's election. A not insignificant percentage of both Obama and Clinton supporters currently say they would vote for McCain if he ends up running against the candidate they do not support.”

What would Gallup's number mean for John McCain in The Keystone State?

Here are (close) approximations of Pennsylvania's current registration figures:

4.4 Million Democrats
3.2 Million Republicans
1.0 Million Independents

As you can see, McCain -- at least theoretically -- couldn't win Pennsylvania if Democrats and Republican voted within their parties. And that would be the case if he does well, as expected, with Independent voters.

In short, to win Pennsylvania, McCain must attract a good chunk of Democratic voters. The Gallup Poll numbers suggest that's doable, especially if Barack Obama wins his Party's nomination, as appears likely.

How probable is it that McCain will do well with Pennsylvania Democrats? It is probable, based on past experience. In 2000 and, especially 2004, George W. Bush, not as popular with Pennsylvanians as John McCain, performed well in The Keystone State. Against John Kerry, he got 48% of the vote -- a number well above the less than 40% of the electorate that identifies itself as Republican.

If voter attitudes stay roughly as they are now, John McCain should be an almost certain winner in Pennsylvania, and that's very bad news for Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

NOTE: If you want to get up-to-minute information from the McCain campaign, please send an e-mail to Patrick Hynes at:

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Obama, Clinton Flunk Economics 101

Lorin and Randy, two members of the Black Conservatives Group on Yahoo have responded to the “economic plans” (if they deserve that term) of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Here are their reactions, followed by mine. They explain their sophisticated points simply and compellingly.

Raising taxes is bad for economic growth. It reduces the capacity of individuals or companies to spend, save or invest. These activities are critical for job creation, business formation,innovation, and risk taking.

As a result, Obama has recently begun to hedge about his plan to roll back Bush's individual income tax cuts for those making over $200K, in light of the economic malaise / recession. He is now saying that hemay not insist that they be rolled back.

He has blinked.

There is nothing like an economic downturn to test the validity of ones professed public policy prescriptions.If raising taxes on the "rich" indeed was a low risk strategy with negligible negative economic repercussions, Obama would be sticking to his guns.

If Obama thinks 1+1 = 3 then he should stick to that nonsensical view irrespective of the economic climate.In fact, we know, 1 + 1 = 2. All day, every day.

The same math is true of his proposals to remove the cap on income subject to social security taxes, make companies pay income taxes at the US rate (2nd or 3rd highest among developed countries) rather than the foreign rate, roll back Bush's reduction in taxes dividends, and sympathy for fellow math wizard Charlie Rangel's proposal to raise taxes on carried interests and capital gains.

I remain supportive of Obama's quest for the nomination, but not for the Presidency.His economic and tax policies don't add up.

LJC (Lorin J. Crenshaw)

Obama has no workable method for fixing the Social Security mess, since raising SS tax will not cure the long-term shortfall. This failure is ESPECIALLY harmful if the U.S. allows all the 30 million illegal aliens to collect Social Security benefits, including their older relatives (who come here under "family reunification" plans) who have never paid a penny into the system. Even the illegals who have worked in the U.S. often have contributed no taxes (wish I could have done that!) because their wages have been paid in cash.

Generally, private retirement accounts can be created at a 3-4% real growth rate, compared to 0-1% for Social Security.

For blacks especially, the Social Security system is a form of theft, since any given black worker is statistically likely to die several years sooner after retirement, so he/she does not collect as much in benefits as Asians/Caucasians who typically live several years longer.

What is needed is some form of personally owned retirement account, so that if a black wage-earner dies earlier than his asian/white counterpart, the accumulated retirement fund can be passed on to his/her children, thus keeping the money in the family for education, home-buying, bill-paying or just enjoyment.

The way things now work, the benefits end with death, and the money is returned to the SS pool to benefit other workers, or even worse, someone who may not deserve it at all.I am not saying that we should scrap the SS system entirely, since some people are attached to it and feel that only government provides stability. If those people want to continue with the current system, they must have the option to do so.


My response: Randy and Lorin show why this is one of the best groups (Black Conservatives) on the Internet. In one sense, national economics really is about making one plus one equal more than two in that it's about creating new wealth. It's not just about taking money from one guy's pocket and putting it another person's, which is the "economic plan" of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. That’s called the "zero sum" game.

In the 1960s, President John F. Kenney made a sharp cut in taxes (as Reagan did later), with all sorts of people saying it would reduce tax revenues, etc. In fact, it did just the opposite, leading to very strong growth and HIGHER tax revenues. Well, there aren't any Democrats around like Kennedy (including the one named Ted) anymore.

Hillary Clinton gives her big "economic" speech, and it means she would like to take your money to bail out people who bought houses they can't afford. Punish the people who made good decisions -- and reward the people who made bad ones. In her view and Barack's it's not one plus one but one minus one. The types who can't stand America just love it.

If Clinton and Obama hired Randy and Lorin as their economic advisors they might be worth voting for. But don't quit your days jobs, Randy and Lorin, because those calls won’t come. .

Obama: Black Messages, White Messages

NOTE: Recently, I posted Lloyd Marcus' autobiographical essay about growing-up-smart (and conservative) in -- and out of -- housing projects. Tomorrow, on all my blogs, I'm going to post powerful comments on the American economy by Black Conservatives Randy and Lorin. I suggest that economically challenged candidates like Obama and Clinton hire Randy and Lorin immediately. No, they won't do so. Be sure to visit to see what two talented Black thinkers have to say. Look for "Obama, Clinton Flunk Economics 101."

On my national blog ( I will be posting a new column later today (Tuesday, about 5 p.m.) but for now on the national blog I want to keep featuring Lloyd Marcus' fascinating "Confessions."

My next column will begin with the following quote from novelist Martin Amis' wonderful book called Money: "My theory is -- we don't really go that far into other people, even when we think we do. We hardly ever go in and bring them out. We just stand at the jaws of the cave, and strike a match, and quickly ask if anybody's there."

What I've been trying recently is to "bring out" the real Barack Obama -- particularly to determine why says one thing in his books and something very different in his speeches and commercials. Who is Obama? And does he even know the answer to that question?

On this Pennsylvania blog today, I will talk about Obama's commercials, now playing non-stop in The Keystone State. In the ads, he features his (white) grandparents as charter members of "The Greatest Generation." However, in his books and (some) speeches, he portrays the grandparents as vaguely racist and about as heroic as Bozo the Clown. (He calls his grandmother "Rosie the Riveter" and describes his grandfather as a combat soldier who never saw combat.)

Why does he present such vastly different pictures of those key people in his life? The evidence believe Obama is presenting one message to Black people -- and a radically different one to white people. With the cooperation of the national media, he's offering us sharply contradictory messages.

Of course, the key question is as follows: Is Obama telling the truth in his commercials? For example, the Pennsylvania ads talk about how he has "stood up to the special interests" and that "they are not financing [his] campaign? Is that true? And where could you find evidence to help you find out?

Obama: "We need to reign in special interests . . ."

In Obama's Senate campaign, he raised a huge amount of money: $14.5 million. That was more than six times as much as John McCain raised for his last Senate campaign. Obama was basically running unopposed, so he certainly didn't need the money. Many of Obama's contributions -- millions of dollars worth -- came from individuals and group that obviously represent special interests.

Determine this for yourself by going to the Center for Responsive Politics site at: If you go there, you'll be amazed by what you find.

You'll notice he received a total of about $250,000 from individuals associated with the University of Chicago and Northwestern University, both with obvious interests in legislation. Also, he received a combined total of about $123,000 from George Soros, a billionaire money-trader and founder of far-left, and mega-financial firm Goldman Sachs. For some reason, Obama doesn't regard these special interests as . . . well . . . special interests.

Notice that most of Obama's biggest contributors, such as Kirkland & Ellis, are either law firms or financial institutions. You may have noticed that Obama has been a lot less likely to criticize financial companies than Hillary Clinton. In fact, Obama's finance committee chair is Penny Pritzker, an extremely wealthy Chicagoan who was deeply involved in politicies that led to the sub-prime mortgage crisis.

Apparently, Obama regards "special interests" as any group other than the ones who provide him cash for campaigns. Thus, his commercials present a message that's untrue.

Black Conservative Randy: Right on Rev. Wright

The following are comments by Black conservative Randy on Obama's relationship with America-hating pastor Jeremiah A. Wright:

Pastor Wright's mentoring and advice to Obama can have policy effects that can damage the entire country, and possibly even damage the entire world.As for the excuse that Obama is "guilty by association", there is a simple way to fix that. Obama must disassociate, fully and completely and specifically regarding any anti-American policies or statements. No evasions, no weasel words, no equivocations, no moral equivalency.Unless, of course, Obama is only running for the Presidency of the angry blacks of America.It is an issue for many people, so it must be addressed. His choice.Randy

Monday, March 24, 2008


Fellow Pennsylvanians and Others: I hope you'll read Larry Perrault's fine essay titled, "Why Conservatives MUST Support John McCain." A Texan, Larry has been a strong and effective supporter of Mike Huckabee, but like the vast majority of people who "like Mike," he's now behind Senator McCain. You can find his piece at: I wrote a long (very long!) comment in response to his piece.

Frankly, Pennsylvanians of all political stripes -- Republican, Independent, and Democratic -- are committed to protecting the sanctity of life. In that effort, Obama is on the wrong side -- and McCain on the right one.

Senator McCain needs your support, your donations, and your vote. He deserves all three.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Obama's Misleading Pennsylvania TV Commercials

"I can no more disown him (Rev. Wright) than I can disown the Black community. I can no more disown him than I can disown my white grandmother." (Barack Obama)

Frankly, this is Barack doing the Okie doke, practicing deception. Rev. Wright is not synonymous with the Black community. His loony -- and hateful -- ideas are shared by SOME in the Black community but not even by a majority. There's no evidence the community believes that 9/11 was the fault of Americans, including the 3,000 innocent people killed. There's no evidence the Black community thinks the U.S. government "invented" AIDS in order to kill Black people.

Did Obama's grandmother share similar ideas? Obama never says she did. He brings her up apparently to justify his not disowning a hate-monger, Rev. Jeremiah Wright. The grandmother, apparently a good human being, has nothing in common with Wright.

The grandparents seem to be people Obama can use to further his political ambitions. In his commercials, running now in PA, he speaks with reverence about the grandfather's service "in Patton's Army.” In his first book (Dreams of My Father), he describes the grandpa as marching around in the mud and never seeing real combat.

In his speech, he describes him grandmother as someone unnecessarily frightened of "big Black men" and given to making racial "stereotypes." But the book doesn't show that at all. She never even mentioned (apparently) that the man threatening her in one instance was Black. The grandfather supplies that detail.

In his commercials Obama implies he's proud of his grandma's war service on "a bomber assembly line." But in the book he calls her "Rosie the Riveter," a demeaning term.

Obama's TV commercials show him at what Gloria Borger called "at 30,000 feet." In other words, they contain pretty, conciliatory terms at variance with what Obama truly believes. He is "post-racial" in the same way that Britney Spears is a good mother. In the commercials, it's as if Rev. Wright -- and Obama's disturbing books -- never existed. We hear the most liberal -- the most ideological -- member of the U.S. Senate telling us -- unconvincingly -- how he will magically bring us together.

My frustration is that too many people hold Obama to very low standards. He's allowed to be inconsistent in what he says to us. His grandparents get criticized for holding less than enlightened views, but they get little credit for bringing up a grandson who went to Columbia and Harvard and became a U.S. Senator – and viable candidate for the presidency. Common sense tells us they must have done a lot of things right.

Is the media going to resolve the questions that remain about Obama? Don't be on it. They'd rather wave their pom poms in salute of a candidate who's supposed to be "post-racial," but seems to look at everything in life through a racial lens.


Question: Why did New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson endorse Obama, a step that James Carville called "an act of betrayal?" (Richardson lately said -- curiously -- "I am very loyal to the Clintons.")

Answer: Because he wants to be the vice-presidential nominee on an Obama-Richardson ticket.Like Senator Obama, Gov. Richardson is one of those individuals who desires to be on the public payroll forever, and so he needs the job. Also, he might help Obama some (but not a great deal) with the Hispanic vote in battleground states like New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado . . . and even New Jersey. Richardson doesn't have a Hispanic name (or appearance), and he's not especially well known outside New Mexico. In the Democratic primaries, Gov. Richardson often came across as clownish -- and incapable of generating more than a handful of votes. Also, he pandered shamelessly to the Far Left on Iraq, but that segment largely ignored him.

Would Richardson help Obama with Hispanics in Pennsylvania? Probably not, because The Keystone State has only about 390,000 Hispanics (including those too young to vote), less than 4% of the state's total population of about 12.5 million. Of course, in a very close election, Hispanic votes could make the difference. Right now, McCain has a strong lead in the Pennsylvania polls, but it's early in the electoral game.

Senator John McCain is generally strong with Hispanic voters, as he demonstrated in California, Florida, and Texas, and Obama generally has not done well with Hispanics (outside Illinois). He must do well with them if he wishes to win the general election, and McCain will not make that task an easy one.

Friday, March 21, 2008

PA Democrats Defecting to McCain

NOTE: SUNDAY I'LL HAVE ANOTHER COLUMN DEVOTED TO POLITICAL DEVELOPMENTS IN PENNSYLVANIA. On Saturday, I have a column on my other sites ( or that deal with Barack Obama's tendency in his books to stereotype white people, especially the grandparents who brought him up. I hope you'll visit!)

In a sign of just how divisive and ugly the Democratic fight has gotten, only 53% of Clinton voters say they'll vote for Obama should he become the nominee. Nineteen percent say they'll go for Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and 13% say they won't vote.

Sixty percent of Obama voters say they'll go for Clinton should she win the nomination, with 20% opting for McCain, and three percent saying they won't vote.

ABC News’ Political Punch Blog: Keystone Democrats Set To Defect

By Jake Tapper

In the new Franklin & Marshall College Poll (read it HERE) some good news for Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-NY, and some troubling news for Democrats.

[In PA] Clinton leads Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, 51% to 35% -- increasing her lead from February, when she was up 44% to 37%. She leads among young voters, wealthier voters...voters in virtually every demographic group, with the exceptions of Philly voters and non-whites.

In a sign of just how divisive and ugly the Democratic fight has gotten, only 53% of Clinton voters say they'll vote for Obama should he become the nominee. Nineteen percent say they'll go for Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and 13% say they won't vote.

Sixty percent of Obama voters say they'll go for Clinton should she win the nomination, with 20% opting for McCain, and three percent saying they won't vote.


Note to Visitors: If you want to get up-to-the-minute information from the McCain Campaign, please contact Patrick Hynes at: He supplied the above material.

Steve says: One of the better developments online is Col. O. P. Ditch's Vets4McCain. I hope every veteran and active duty military man or woman will go there to register their support for John McCain.

There are 25 million veterans in the U.S., the vast majority of whom vote (and all of them have families and friends). I hope at least one permanent staff member for McCain works specifically on veterans and active military of African descent.

Right now, it looks as if McCain might get as much as 15% of the Black vote nationally (as compared to the Republicans' usual 8%). If he can get 15%, he will win by a big margin in Ohio, PA, and NJ, the states I'm focusing on. McCain has a chance to win nearly every county in PA, with the exception of Philadelphia and Allegheny (Pittsburgh). But to prevail, he has to cut into the usual huge Black majorities for Democrats in Philly and Pittsburgh. There are strong indications he can do just that.

In 2004, George W. Bush had a narrow loss (51% to 48%) in Pennsylvania. It looks as if McCain, with his strong backing among Independents, will do much better. Also, as the Franklin & Marshall College poll demonstrates, McCain should pick up strong support among PA's moderate to conservative Democrats.

Nearly half of Hillary Clinton's supporters -- and she will win the Pennsylvania Primary by a big margin -- may vote for McCain. That's extremely bad news for the presumptive Democratic nominee: Barack Obama.

Clearly, the anti-American and racist comments by Obama's vulgar "spiritual advisor," Rev. Jeremiah Wright are hurting the Senator among voters. Since Wright is an egomaniac, don't look for him to go away (or shut up) -- and look for Obama's troubles to multiply.

Thursday, March 20, 2008


Colonel O. P. Ditch (USAF, Ret) is making an urgent appeal to all U.S. veterans to show their support for John McCain. Here's the message Col. Ditch sent today:



Sent: 3/20/2008

Subj: Help spread the word

I'm trying to get Military & Veterans to sign up at: http://Vets4McCain.comPlease help me pass the word and provide links to my site. In 2004 I was able to rally 80,000 vets to actually sign up and comment. Bumper Stickers are also available for the asking.

O. P. Ditch
Col USAF (ret).

Please visit the Vets4McCain site today. It's absolutely critical for the McCain Campaign that he get almost unanimous support from Pennsylvania veterans. If you're not a veteran, ask friends and family members who are to visit the site and pledge their support to this national effort.


What's happening in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and even New Jersey is also occurring nationally. John McCain is looking more and more like a winner in the November 4, 2008 election. Obama's problems related to his joined-at-the-hip association with racist, America-hater Rev. Jeremiah Wright won't go away -- and may get worse. Many (25%) of Hillary Clinton's supporters say they could vote for McCain if their candidate loses the nomination, as seems likely. The following is by economist Larry Kudlow, who analyzes the implications of the polls.

National Review’s Kudlow Blog: McCain Surges Ahead

By Larry Kudlow

Has anyone noticed that John McCain is surging in the polls? According to the latest print from Rasmussen and Zogby, McCain now holds a 6 to 8 point lead against Hill-Bama. And I doubt that Senator Obama’s speech yesterday will change anything. It was nothing more than a non-denial denial of his fidelity to Reverend Jeremiah Wright and Wright’s hard-left anti-American agenda.

(For those interested in especially good commentary on Obama’s speech, I suggest reading Ronald Kessler’s piece over at Newsmax, as well as the editorial in Investor Business Daily. Both have insightful critiques.)

McCain’s surge means that it is much less likely that Herbert Hoover-style high-tax and trade-protectionist proposals will come from Hill-Bama. This point will not be lost on the stock market.

And what about Congress? Well, there’s a good article by John Gizzi in Human Events suggesting that Republicans will actually pick up seats in the House this November. According to Oklahoma Republican Tom Cole, chairman of the Republican Congressional Committee, 61 House Democrats are running in districts that President Bush carried in 2004, while only 8 Republicans are running in districts carried by John Kerry.

What’s more, of the twenty-five districts in which the Democrat was last elected with less than 55 percent of the vote — historically a sign of vulnerability — all but eight are districts carried by Bush.

The current breakdown in the House is 231 Democrats and 198 Republicans, with 2 vacant seats formerly held by Democrats and 4 vacant seats formerly in GOP hands. 218 would constitute a majority. So, if my math is right, the GOP would need a 20-seat pickup this November to carry the House. It doesn’t seem a likely outcome according to nearly all the pundits. But, then again, pundits continue to underestimate the strength of John McCain at the head of the GOP ticket.

According to the latest Zogby poll, McCain scores 46 to 40 percent against Obama. Just last month it was 47 to 40 — in Obama’s favor! That’s a huge turnaround, undoubtedly traceable to Obama’s recent problems with his pal Reverend Wright. As for Sen. Clinton, Zogby also shows McCain leading, 48 to 40. In Rasmussen’s daily Presidential Tracking Poll, McCain leads Obama 48-42, and Clinton 49-43.

If and when Sen. McCain moves to 50 percent or better in these polls, it would be a true sign of electoral strength. It would lift spirits for a strong GOP showing in the House and Senate. And, as I mentioned earlier, the chances of Hoover-like high-tax and trade-protectionist policies — which would be inimical to economic growth and devastating to the stock market — grow slimmer and slimmer.

That’s good news.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Barack Obama: The Invisible Man

Note 1: On Friday of this week, I'll be doing a piece about "political demographics" in the Keystone Stone. The title will be: "Can McCain Win Pennsylvania?" The answer is yes, but it won't be easy. I hope you'll visit.
Note 2: I have an analytical posting today (Wednesday) on another site: It's titled "Can McCain Win New Jersey?" In fact, there are similarities between New Jersey (the ninth largest state) and Pennsylvania (the sixth largest state). If McCain can win both NJ and PA, he would have smooth sailing to the presidency. I hope you'll visit.
Photo: Obama, Not Totally Happy to See Jesse Jackson

"Words crack and break . . . will not stay in place." (T. S. Eliot)

Here's what I wrote prior to Obama's Tuesday remarks on race: I expect the usual "deep baritone filibuster," loaded with self-serving rhetoric. Rev. Wright's anti-American statements are similar to many Obama heard -- and probably internalized -- in his years at Harvard (where Michelle also attended). He will talk about his "love" for America, but I fear the country he loves is one most of us wouldn't recognize. He will discuss how he "profoundly disagrees" with some of Wright's comments, but he won't discuss exactly which ones or why precisely he dissents.

Also, I wrote the following yesterday to an important Black conservative, Lloyd Marcus, whom you'll hear a lot more about on this site: I believe in his speech Obama is going to do what he called recently the "okie dokie," an exercise in deception. In his first book, he talks basically about being ashamed of his (white) mother, whom he should be portraying as the heroine of his life story. Brought up by a white mother and white grandparents, he will somehow proclaim his expertise about the "Black experience in America." In short, he'll talk out of both sides of his mouth.

The notion that Obama "had no idea" what America-hating Rev. Wright was up to is the candidate's version of "the dog ate my homework." He's a little bit like novelist Ralph Ellison's "Invisible Man." We don't know him -- or know what he believes. We fear he may share many more beliefs with Wright than he lets on.

His wife Michelle, who apparently has spent her entire adult life being ashamed of her country, is a typical Princeton/Harvard graduate, convinced of her superiority to her countrymen and countrywomen. Her point seems to be: How can she be proud of a country which isn't run by people (Ivy-League graduates) like them? The general view is: "America is a terrible place, but if I ran it, the country would be a much better one."

Here's how Shelby Steele, of Stanford's Hoover Institution describes the "Obama phenomenon":

". . . Now, the floodlight of a presidential campaign has trained on this usually hidden corner of contemporary black life: a mindless indulgence in a rhetorical anti-Americanism as a way of bonding and of asserting one's blackness. Yet Jeremiah Wright, splashed across America's television screens, has shown us that there is no real difference between rhetorical hatred and real hatred.

"No matter his ultimate political fate, there is already enough pathos in Barack Obama to make him a cautionary tale. His public persona thrives on a manipulation of whites (bargaining), and his private sense of racial identity demands both self-betrayal and duplicity. His [Obama's] is the story of a man who flew so high, yet neglected to become himself."

Steele is suggesting that one reason we don't know Obama is that he doesn't know himself. Coming from faith and community traditions of Black separatism, he claims to be the man who can transcend racial polarities. He wants to become President of a country that his pastor and his fellow congregants abhor. It makes no sense.

What Shelby Steele means by "bargaining" is that Obama is making a trade with white people: in exchange for their votes and money, he'll enable them to feel good about themselves. Basically, he'll allow them to assuage their guilt over past racial sins by a single act: supporting his candidacy.

Obama is now engaged in a desperate balancing act: his long-time minister and his wife both despise their native land, America. Whether Obama disagrees with them remains uncertain.

Again, he's the Invisible Man, someone we'll never be able to pin down on his beliefs. He will "disagree" with Rev. Wright, the man who claims the U.S. government "invented HIV" to kill Blacks, but he will not disown him, as he should. The most liberal member of the Senate, Obama claims to have a special ability -- one never demonstrated -- to reach across the aisle and bridge political divides.

Is he just lying to us? Or is he truly uncertain of the contrast between what he says and what he does?

Again, we don't know Barack Obama -- and we probably never will. That's the real message of Tuesday's speech.

For Immediate Release
Contact: Press Office
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
ARLINGTON, VA -- U.S. Senator John McCain today issued the following statement on the situation in Tibet:
"The unfolding tragedy in Tibet should draw the attention of the entire world. I deplore the violent crackdown by Chinese authorities and the continuing oppression in Tibet of those merely wishing to practice their faith and preserve their culture and heritage.
I have listened carefully to the Dalai Lama and am convinced he is a man of peace who reflects the hopes and aspirations of Tibetans. I urge the government of the People's Republic of China to address the root causes of unrest in Tibet by opening a genuine dialogue with His Holiness, the Dalai Lama.
Reports of shutting down YouTube and confiscation of SIM cards are disturbing and reports of multiple deaths are far more so, especially in a year when China is preparing to host the Olympic Games.
I urge the Chinese authorities to ensure peaceful protest is not met with violence, to release monks and others detained for peacefully expressing their views and to allow full outside access to Tibet."
Note: If you'd like to get up-to-date releases and news from the McCain Campaign, please e-mail Patrick Hynes at:

Monday, March 17, 2008

Obama's Chickens Home to Roost

Tomorrow morning (Tuesday) I'll give my thoughts on what I think Barack Obama will say in his "major speech" in Philadelphia about race in America. Short form: I expect the usual "deep baritone filibuster," loaded with self-serving rhetoric. Rev. Wright's anti-American statements are similar to many Obama heard -- and probably internalized -- in his years at Harvard (where Michelle also attended). He will talk about his "love" for America, but I fear the country he loves is one most of us wouldn't recognize.
If you'd like to get up-to-minute statements from the McCain Campaign, you can do by e-mailing your own e-mail address to: Patrick Hynes is one of John McCain's most important political operatives and a very fine human being. If you have a blog or groups (or an e-mail list), please tell people how they can contact Patrick to get the latest words from the McCain effort. Thanks.

Damn chickens
By Steven Ein

I feared it would be about race, right from the start. White America was jubilant to be "post racial."

People were spellbound by Barack Obama, as were Rev. Wright's congregants. The candidate's audiences could hardly contain their emotions. Adults swooned, even fainted, over his most elequent words.

But then, something happened. We got to see, thanks to the huge ego of Rev. Wright, videos of what he actually said and meant, and almost as bad, we saw the ecstatic behavior of his congregants.

"God damn America." With that phrase, the Rev. Wright doomed the presidential run of a black man who could have been grand. Yes, Barack, Michelle, and Jerimiah, "the chickens have come home to roost."

Not the chickens you expected and they ain't roosting where you wanted them. But, indeed, they have come home to roost.

McCain Blasts Hillary's Iraq Speech

If you'd like to get up-to-minute statements from the McCain Campaign, you can do by e-mailing your own e-mail address to: Patrick Hynes is one of John McCain's most important political operatives and a very fine human being. If you have a blog or groups (or an e-mail list), please tell people how they can contact Patrick to get the latest words from the McCain effort. Thanks.

For Immediate Release
Contact: Press Office
Monday, March 17, 2008
ARLINGTON, VA -- U.S. Senator John McCain's presidential campaign today released the following statement by Communications Director Jill Hazelbaker on Senator Hillary Clinton's intellectually dishonest attacks on John McCain today:

"At a time when Senator Clinton knows that American and allied forces are making real progress in Iraq, it is unfortunate that she would look to score political points by mischaracterizing Senator McCain's statement with intellectually dishonest attacks. The differences between Senator McCain's position, that we must win this war, and Senator Clinton's position, withdrawal and de facto surrender on day one, are important enough to have an honest debate over.

It would be the height of irresponsibility to stick with campaign promises to the left-wing of the Democratic Party and proceed with withdrawal regardless of what the situation is on the ground in Iraq in January 2009.

The point that Senator McCain was making was one about American troop presence versus American combat presence. He was speaking of a post-war scenario, not a hundred year war, when he suggested that the American people could support maintaining a military presence in Iraq should the Iraqi and U.S. governments determine it to be in their mutual interest, just as the U.S. and German, Japanese, and South Korean governments did after conflicts.

One would suspect Senator Clinton is aware that American troops have been present peacefully in Germany and Japan for more than six decades. The American people deserve more than blatant mischaracterizations, and we invite Senator Clinton to participate with us in an honest debate."

Black Conservative Hammers Obama,

The following paragraph is from a member of the Black Conservatives Group on Yahoo:

I cannot say for sure if this is the beginning of the last act of obama's play for the presidency; however, one thing is for sure: something is truly rotten in obamaland. When you weigh Obama belonging, for 20 years, to an overtly racist church, and his wife's statement that she's never been proud of america until he ran for president, something is truly askew with those who revolve around Obama and probably with the Senator himself. One doesnt continuously seek the company of those whom one finds revolting, so by simply attending Wright's church for so long, there was something there that kept Obama returning it and very little, according to his actions, that he found revolting. As said before, i dont know if this will hurt his chances for the presidency, for many on the far-left echo the sentiments raised by Jeremiah Wright.

Uncle Jeremiah: Barack Obama and his cookie-cutter race huckster.

By Mark Steyn

The Reverend Jeremiah Wright thinks that, given their treatment by white America, black Americans have no reason to sing “God Bless America.” “The government gives them the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes a three-strike law and then wants us to sing ‘God Bless America.’ No, no, no, God damn America,” he told his congregation. “God damn America for treating our citizens as less than human.”

I’m not a believer in guilt by association, or the campaign vaudeville of rival politicians insisting this or that candidate disassociate himself from remarks by some fellow he had a 30-second grip’n’greet with a decade ago. But Jeremiah Wright is not exactly peripheral to Barack Obama’s life. He married the Obamas and baptized their children.

Those of us who made the mistake of buying the senator’s last book, The Audacity of Hope, and assumed the title was an ingeniously parodic distillation of the great sonorous banality of an entire genre of blandly uplifting political writing discovered circa page 127 that in fact the phrase comes from one of the Reverend Wright’s sermons. Jeremiah Wright has been Barack Obama’s pastor for 20 years — in other words, pretty much the senator’s entire adult life. Did Obama consider God Damn America as a title for his book but it didn’t focus-group so well?

To read the rest of Mark Steyn's fine piece, click on the following:

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Will Obama Collapse in Pennsylvania?

I'd like to ask every visitor here to join me as a member of the online group of McCain supporters. You can do so by going to: You'll be asked to contribute $10, which will go to the McCain effort to win the presidency. Thanks

This is a Pennsylvania version of the column I posted today on my main blog: I believe Obama is going to perform very badly in Pennsylvania, losing the state by a substantial amount. I'd guess that Hillary Clinton will get more than 60% of the Democratic vote in the Keystone State, bringing her a lot closer to Obama in the "delegate count." In that primary, I have "endorsed" Hillary Clinton, although I believe she would make a lousy President, whereas John McCain, an American hero, could be a great one.

"The [U.S.] government lied about INVENTING the HIV virus . . . " (Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright, pastor of Obama's Trinity Church)

Is Barack Obama, a serious candidate for President of the U.S., a closet believer in radical Black separatism? I fear the answer to that question just may be "yes." I have recommended recently that Obama, because of his close ties to Pastor Wright, should suspend his campaign.

Pastor Wright is scum, a man driven by deep hatred for white people. In one recent sermon, he said the following about the Clintons: "Bill [Clinton] did us [Black people] just like he did Monica Lewinsky. He was ridin' [us] dirty . . . ."

Apparently on a preacherly roll, Wright then added the following: "God damn America." A Christian minister, Black, White, or otherwise, doesn't say such things. And a congregation that hears such verbal slime doesn't whoop and holler in approval, as the attendees (was one of them Obama?) did at Trinity Church.

That group of Yahoos is the one Obama describes as his "faith community." Obama has called some of Wright's statements -- somehow, he doesn't specify which ones -- "unacceptable." He seems to feel such tepid comments on his part will distance him sufficiently from the man he now calls his "former preacher." (Wright retired last month as Trinity's pastor, although he retains the title "emeritus.")

In fact, Wright was his pastor for 20 years. He's the man Obama called his "spiritual advisor" and his "sounding board," and his metaphorical "uncle." Famously, he provided the title ("The Audacity of Hope") for the book that made Obama a multi-millionaire.

If John McCain's long-time preacher -- or Hillary Clinton's -- had made such hateful statements over many years, they would no longer be serious candidates for the presidency. Wright's remarks are racist and separatist, and for Obama to pretend he was unaware of his pastor's views is totally disingenuous.

If you look closely at Obama's speaking style, you can see he's learned a great deal from Jeremiah Wright. Like the pastor, the Illinois Senator can work a crowd into an emotional lather. Where Wright denounces white people, Obama does the same with George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, the man he calls his "cousin." The notion of Wright's being a man's "uncle" and Cheney his "cousin" is a scary thought.

Michelle Obama has talked about being ashamed of her country -- until, of course, her husband started winning primaries and caucuses (often in states that are mostly populated by white people) -- and one wonders how her husband feels about America.

Of course, we know how Wright feels -- he despises his native land. To what degree does Obama agree with him? Is he really just another cynical politician looking out for "number 1?" Is he someone, totally unlike this pastor and mentor, who seeks to bring us together? Or he merely an egomaniac committed mainly to advancing himself through carefully crafted rhetoric?

Can Obama really drop out of the presidential race? "Yes, he can!" And yes, he should.

In Pennsylvania, Obama may end up losing the white vote by percentages approximating the situation in Mississippi, where he got skunked with Caucasians going to Mrs. Clinton by 73% to 27%. Ohio is a lot like Pennsylvania, and Obama did very poorly with whites there.

If you'd like to read an outstanding piece on the problems facing the Democratic Party, please click on the following: The essay is by David Shribman, executive editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He identifies five issues that are dogging the Democrats: female voters, Black voters, young voters, Michigan, and Florida. Shribman's point is that all five groups might end up very dissatisfied with the Democrats. He's right.

The following is a remarkable piece on John McCain's Campaign Strategy. It's long, but it's very much worth reading.

Maverick wants to paint blue states red

By: Jonathan Martin March 14, 2008 09:24 AM EST

EXETER, N.H. — Every candidate tells his audience that its votes are crucial to his success, and John McCain was no different here Wednesday. “I intend to be back and back and back, because I love it here,” McCain said at the end of a town hall meeting held to thank the state that launched and then relaunched his presidential hopes. “But also, a little straight talk, because I need to win New Hampshire to win the presidency.”

That may be stretching it some, since the state's four electoral votes are not critical to his chances, but McCain’s camp is serious about playing to win here. And it’s not just the Granite State — which John F. Kerry won in 2004 and which turned out its two Republican congressmen in 2006 — that the campaign thinks the Arizona senator can seize. Conversations with McCain backers and other Republican operatives, most of whom insisted on anonymity, reflect a party intent on altering the red state/blue state paradigm.

“2004 was defined by 2000,” a senior McCain aide said, assessing the mostly static state-by-state strategy pursued by President Bush’s two campaigns. “We’re just in a very different situation, and that has given us the freedom to look at the map a lot more broadly.”

Though still very early in the planning stages, McCain aides have begun eyeing between 20 and 25 states that could be competitive, a list that includes some places that are anything but rock-ribbed conservative. Next month, they’ll make this case symbolically by sending the candidate on a different-kind-of-Republican tour into places where party members typically don’t tread. By virtue of his maverick brand, nontraditional stances on key issues and his Western roots, McCain may be able to compete in states that were far out of reach for Bush and that have otherwise been trending away from Republicans.

This potential, say McCain strategists and other Republicans, could amount to the GOP’s ace in the hole in an otherwise dismal political climate. “It puts a whole new set of states in play for us,” Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.) said of McCain’s candidacy. Davis, a former NRCC chairman with an almost unmatched command of political demography, said McCain’s chief strength is that his appeal among independents, the fastest-growing affiliation in many states, can compensate for the decline in self-identified Republicans.

“Where we have been losing ground is among independents, and in every survey I’ve seen, he’s very competitive with independents,” Davis said.

McCain’s character-based appeal and his “straight talk” image has enabled him to win over primary voters who disagree with him on key issues such as the war in Iraq. It’s this identification, in which persona trumps policy, that McCain can use to reach out to those who were turned off by Bush, backers say. “He moves politics from the culture wars that have dominated for the past decade to a different matrix,” said Davis. Even though McCain holds mostly traditional views, “he’s not viewed as a cultural conservative.”

“Every time these guys are out screaming helps bring [independents] in,” Davis argued, alluding to McCain’s critics on the right. For that reason, say McCain aides and unaffiliated strategists alike, the nominee could compete in states that have a history of rewarding mavericks and that count significant numbers of independent voters on their rolls.

Such a list starts here, in famously flinty New Hampshire, one of only three states to switch allegiance in presidential voting between 2000 and 2004. But it could also include Maine, which has elected an independent governor and which gave Ross Perot his highest vote share in 1992. Connecticut would be tougher but has also elected two third-party candidates to statewide office (Lowell Weicker and Joseph I. Lieberman).

The upper Midwest is another region that, while trending Democratic, has the sort of free-thinking voter that McCain could appeal to. Wisconsin, in particular, is viewed with high hopes by Republicans. On the West Coast, Washington and Oregon fall into this category, with the latter seen as more promising because it lacks a dominant liberal population center like metro Seattle and includes a sizable rural population.

Beyond McCain’s independent image, of course, there are votes that will help him with blue state voters — the same votes that underscore why he’s caused his own party heartburn.

Mitt Romney rattled off “McCain-Kennedy,” “McCain-Lieberman” and “McCain-Feingold” like they were four-letter words toward the end of the GOP primary, but it’s precisely immigration, the environment and campaign finance reform that the Arizona senator’s camp hopes will attract targeted unaligned and Democratic voters. The first of these could help McCain play political defense in competitive, formerly red states more than anything else.

In fast-growing states like Colorado and Nevada, he could potentially offset unfavorable demographic trends with an appeal to Hispanic voters that a more orthodox Republican candidate with a hard-line immigration approach couldn’t make. For the same reason, New Mexico, which Bush carried by a small margin after losing it by an even smaller margin in 2000, could also favor McCain.

While McCain’s comprehensive approach to immigration reform could play well with Hispanics at all income levels, his passion for addressing climate change and zeal for political reform could appeal to the sort of affluent, well-educated voters who have largely abandoned the GOP in the Bush years. Such progressive views would likely play best in the same states that have shown a penchant for independence — select parts of the Northeast, upper Midwest and Pacific Northwest.

McCain’s background as a veteran Western politician might also prove to be an asset. Aides think his ability to talk fluently on regional issues such as water rights and public land use could help in a part of the country that views Easterners — politicians and otherwise — with suspicion. This could help him in large swaths of Washington and Oregon, as well as in the “defensive” red states in the mountain West and Southwest.

And then there is California. “I intend to contest all over America, including the state of California,” McCain told reporters when asked after his town hall meeting about his desire to move beyond the red-blue paradigm. The Golden State hadn’t even been mentioned in the question, but McCain wants it known that he’ll compete there. Still, no Republicans contacted for this story gave him much of a chance to win the electoral behemoth. McCain’s campaign was somewhat more diplomatic. “A strong grass-roots campaign there is realistic,” a campaign aide said, noting the high cost of airing ads in California.

The McCain campaign's optimism about being able to expand the map reflects the freedom the moment allows. It’s easy to say now, just having captured the nomination, that they’ll compete aggressively and expansively, but tough decisions about where to allocate resources will eventually have to be made. “Every campaign has to make a judgment about where they can win and where they can’t win,” said Terry Nelson, McCain’s former campaign manager and a top aide in Bush’s reelection. “Resources are limited.”

McCain is in a position similar to that of a hopeful baseball team in spring training: There is great potential on paper, but the long season has yet to begin. And McCain must shoulder a burden that baseball teams don't have to worry about: the record from the previous season.

“Democrats are going to try to paint him as Bush III, and that’s a problem for him,” Davis said of McCain.Aside from contending with the Bush legacy, there are problems both internal (many conservatives are dissatisfied with McCain) and external (Republicans are held in low esteem by the broad public). “Our morale is terrible,” said Davis, a lame duck whose moderate, suburban-Washington seat could easily flip to the Democrats. “And the primary turnout says everything. If we were a brand name, you wouldn’t let it on the shelf.”

Further, McCain isn’t the only White House hopeful who expects to tear up the old map. Barack Obama’s campaign pitch to Democrats is in part rooted in his appeal to independent voters and so-called “Obamacans,” the Republican-oriented voters he has picked up in many competitive states. Obama’s camp is touting primary and caucus victories in Colorado, Iowa, Missouri and Virginia — all of which are trending Democratic — as a sign that they’ll play on once-red turf.

As for Hillary Rodham Clinton, her success among female and downscale voters, particularly in industrial states such as Ohio, leads her backers to believe she could prevent any McCain gains in Democratic strongholds and the traditional battlegrounds.

McCain aides and GOP consultants not aligned with his campaign believe both Democrats have glaring vulnerabilities — as laid bare by their lengthy primary process — that will work to McCain's advantage. Clinton’s polarizing persona, combined with McCain’s appeal to upscale voters who have moved away from the Republicans, could bring some suburbanites who might have otherwise preferred Obama into the GOP fold. Obama’s weakness among some white blue-collar and rural voters is another encouraging sign to Republicans.

If he cannot gain traction among those voters, Michigan and Pennsylvania will appear more attainable for McCain, and even Ohio, which Bush carried but where the GOP has collapsed, might be salvageable. Similarly, Obama’s problems with Hispanics could, when combined with McCain’s immigration stance, also help the GOP.

Given McCain’s strengths, the Democrats' seeming vulnerabilities and the headwinds the Republican Party will face, one top GOP strategist not affiliated with the campaign said McCain's camp had no choice but to be “bolder and more aggressive.” “Bush won by a field goal twice,” said the strategist. “But it doesn’t play to [McCain’s] strengths to play to the base.” And nobody is happier about McCain’s intent to go after Democratic strongholds than those downtrodden Republicans fighting against a blue tide and the dead weight of an unpopular president.

“I’m genuinely delighted to have John McCain as our nominee," New Hampshire GOP Chairman Fergus Cullen said with a smile after McCain made his first general election trip here, "because it guarantees that New Hampshire is going to be competitive and sets up an election where all of our state candidates are going to be judged on their own merits.”
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