Last Minute RNC Rule Change: No More Democracy; Party Bosses Rule
Apparently, Mitt Romney was sufficiently worried about the security of his status as Presumptive Nominee, that he managed to get the RNC Rules changed at the last minute, to eliminate democratic input from grass roots voters, and allow party bosses to determine who gets the nomination.
Ben Swann of FOX’s Reality Check claims that the Republican delegate process is becoming unraveled.
Transcript of Monday, August 27, 2012 Reality Check:
To say that the Republican convention is a mess would be a huge understatement.
The entire state of Maine was stripped of their credentials because they were going to vote for Congessman Ron Paul and not Governor Mitt Romney.
As a result, Maine’s Governor, Paul LePage, is boycotting the RNC.
Saturday Ben Swann interviewed Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan.
He asked how the Governor could support the RNC stripping these Maine delegates of their credentials. He asked it even though we were told the campaign did not want to talk about delegates:
Ben Swann: Yesterday (Friday) the RNC chose to remove the entire Maine delegation from being able to be seated as a part of that. Do you believe that is the right step for the RNC to have taken considering the fact that these people were elected, they were Republicans who were elected by Republicans to go and represent the State of Maine?
Romney: You know, I haven’t seen the inner politics of what’s gone on and I’m not going to comment on the RNC’s decision. I really haven’t looked at this.
Ben Swann (on Reality Check): Really? So Governor Romney claims he wasn’t aware of his own campaign having an entire state of delegates stripped of their credentials? Hard to believe, when it was his campaign that led the challenge of these delegates.
But then again, Governor Romney also claims to not have realized that his chief legal counsel just pushed through what many top GOP leaders are calling the biggest GOP power grab in the party’s history.
So here’s what happened. Conservatives and even some moderates are accusing the Romney chief attorney Ben Ginsberg of pushing through a rules change for delegate selection that would give Mitt Romney enormous power over the primary process, should he win the White House and seek reelection in 2016.
According to the Washington Times, Ginsberg persuaded the RNC Rules Committee members to let Mr. Romney, if he becomes President, decide which delegates will be seated at the 2016 GOP presidential nominating convention. It also calls for letting future presidential hopefuls decide who gets to take the delegate slots that they win in each state. Tea Party supporter and the founder of FreedomWorks Dick Armey came out strongly against this RNC rule saying this:
The process has always been bottom-up, but Romney officials have rewritten the rules so that the nominee can stifle any dissent on the platform committee and even unseat delegates. Make no mistake, this will weaken the process by which Republicans choose their candidate for president and push the grassroots out of the party process.
So when Romney told me (Ben Swan) on Saturday that he isn’t worried about the delegates, he apparently meant it.
Romney: I’m sure the convention will work just fine. We’ll have a lot of delegates there, we’re gonna get the nomination, I’m not worried about that.
Ben Swann- So, what you need to know is that there is a saying in Maine:
“As Maine goes, so goes the rest of the nation.”
And that’s why this delegate battle with Maine is really so important. Let me break this down like this: in Maine, Republican delegates were elected by Republicans. The RNC didn’t like who they were going to vote for, even though under State rules, they had every right. So the RNC said, “We’re going to replace those delegates with ones who will vote the way we want.” Under this new rule change, in 2016, the same thing that happened this year in Maine will happen to every State in the country.
One campaign will have veto power over every single delegate. Which means party bosses run everything, and those at the grass roots level are cut off.
And that is Reality Check
Bosses win, voters lose.
This is why some of us don’t belong to political parties.
May God help us, and may we pray harder than ever before.
Update, Tuesday, August 28, 2:30 PM:
Wow, thank God (literally) we’ve been praying!
I was just at Adoration ( what’s that? – the subject of a future post), and I listed the Convention and the general election on the list of prayer intentions. I am sure I am just a tiny drop in the hurricane of prayers that are being launched at heaven today; for the Convention, and for the people in the way of the hurricane.
Apparently, the rules proposed by the RNC committee Friday (mentioned in the article above) must be approved at the Convention, and today at the Convention numerous delegates are opposing the new rules, and calling them for what they are: a movement to shut out grass roots (that’s us, the average guy). The rules committee is in session as we speak (2 PM Eastern time), and if the “establishment” or bosses, or Romney Team, or whatever you want to call them don’t give in, many delegates, not just Ron Paul delegates, but many, many others as well, are promising a floor fight.
It’s not easy to take freedom away from Americans.
People shouldn’t try.
May God bless and protect America and our God-given rights!
Presumptive: based on presumption or probability; affording reasonable ground for belief.
Presume: take for granted, assume, or suppose; assume as true in the absence of proof to the contrary; undertake with unwarrantable boldness; undertake without right or permission; take something for granted; act or proceed with unwarrantable or impertinent boldness; go too far in acting unwarrantably or in taking liberties.
Finally, the mass media, with a few exceptions, certainly seems to be on board with calling Romney the presumptive nominee.
Doesn’t that make Romney a clear winner?
The fact that the conservative Wall Street Journal and Drudge Report did not jump to presume Romney to be the nominee gives us a clue that there may be some doubt about the security of Romney’s position.
Problems with Counting Chickens Before They Are Hatched
There are a number of reasons why Romney should not count his chickens before they are hatched, particularly in this 2012 election:
In 2012, a huge conflict is going on within the Republican Party between moderate “establishment” Republicans and the new more conservative “tea party” members, and has motivated a number of conservative groups to attempt unseating Romney, who is way too liberal for their taste. There is a secret insurrection going on.
In 2012, there seem to be new strategies emerging that involve changing delegates’ minds after the primaries, effectively nullifying the results of the primaries and challenging the concept of “bound” candidates.
Probability tells us that presumptive candidates are often displaced during the Republican convention– about 43% of the time. Romney is not immune to this possibility.
History also shows us that whenever the presumptive nominee was displaced in the past, the replacement nominee was more likely to be successful in defeating the Democrats in the general election.
Delegate votes at the Republican Convention do not reflect the popular vote directly, so delegate votes at the convention may surprise us despite Romney’s 52% of the popular vote.
Delegate counts such as AP’s are only estimates, and these have been challenged, the media has been accused of misrepresenting them, and the numbers are under constant change, particularly in 2012.
The Republican Internal Conflict: Why Romney Might Be Challenged
Romney has struggled to inspire a passionate following among conservatives because of his liberal leanings, and much of his early success in primaries was attributed to his campaign’s prolific spending.
Romney's early struggle in primaries
Prior to his eventual accumulation of 52% of the popular vote in the primaries, Romney struggled to compete with the conservative candidates opposing him. Lean economic times often cause more voters to be conservative. Most people have the common sense to realize that during a shortage one must conserve, not spend or waste. Conserving is the root of conservatism.
Although Romney was the front-runner during the primaries, he was also the only liberal candidate. Since the conservative vote was split among numerous conservative candidates, Romney appeared to be leading, but in actual fact, the total number of conservative voters was outnumbering Romney supporters. Many of these conservative supporters voted for Santorum in the primaries. When Santorum suspended his campaign due to his daughter Bella’s illness, these voters were left with nowhere to go other than Romney or Ron Paul. And Ron Paul’s extreme attitude towards foreign policy, defense budget, and legalization of drugs scared many voters off. Many voted for Romney because their favorite conservative candidates had suspended their campaigns. They voted for Romney despite their lack of enthusiasm for Romney. Romney was the not-Obama.
Ron Paul - Mitt Romney
Things were also complicated by the fact that Ron Paul has refused all along to withdraw from the campaign, and still remains in the race, so Romney cannot claim victory officially. According to Convention rules (and depending on who is counting or estimating the delegates), Ron Paul still has a plurality of delegates in five states, and his name can be presented for nomination at the Convention. Romney is still taking this threat very seriously; his supporters are still attempting now in August, to unseat Maine’s Ron Paul delegates – Maine Public Broadcasting Network. Romney supporters would not be wasting their time if no threat existed.
In fact, three candidates have enough delegates (a plurality of delegates in five states) for their names to be presented for nomination: Paul, Romney, and Santorum. This opens the door for at least several people to challenge Romney.
What About Paul Ryan? Isn’t He Going to Save the Romney Team?
Paul Ryan joins the Romney ticket
Romney was lagging in some polls against Obama, making establishment Republicans nervous about his ability to carry the election against Obama. A rightful concern, with so many conservatives still unhappy with the “un-Republican” Romney, who has in the past virtually admitted himself that he was Republican in name only (RINO).: “My R doesn’t stand so much for Republican as it does for reform.”
However, something will eventually dawn on people- that if Paul Ryan is so noble in character, intelligent in policy and charismatic in personality that he can transform Romney’s campaign overnight, why is Romney, and not Paul Ryan at the top of the ticket?
It would be tempting for conservatives to rearrange the ticket, putting Paul Ryan at the top, if that is at all possible at the convention. As Vice President, Paul Ryan’s position and power are not secure. Ryan could swiftly be demoted by Etch-A-Sketch master Romney into a powerless and peripheral position immediately after the general election. Already, Mitt Romney is distancing himself from Paul Ryan, claiming that he, Romney, has an economic plan that is “not Paul Ryan’s.”
Mitt Romney would be naïve not to realize that Paul Ryan is a threat to him; not by design, but by Ryan’s inherent likeability, charisma and character; characteristics Romney is lacking.
The fact of the matter is that numerous conservatives like me, who have never committed to one political party, yet who are devoted to unseating the anti-colonialist Barak Obama, are sitting out the Republican internal insurrection to see who wins. We will support any candidate produced by the GOP convention by virtue of his/her being not-Obama, including Mitt Romney. But we do have our favorites, and Romney is not one of them.
Is Paul Ryan Enough to Placate the Republican Insurrection?
Many non-Republican conservatives (such as the Tea Party) are not sitting out the insurrection as I am. They are actively trying to unseat Romney as the presumptive nominee. (More on specific efforts below.)
Ryan has certainly energized Romney’s campaign, and will help Romney do better in polls against Obama, but Ryan may have little effect on internal Republican battles before the convention, because people realize the “demote-ability” of a Vice President.
If Romney survives convention attempts to unseat him, then Paul Ryan’s presence on the ticket will definitely help Romney against Obama in the general election. Let’s just hope Ryan does not get demoted to a position of little power and influence after the election, as some Vice-Presidents have been in previous administrations, including George Washington’s, who did not include John Adams in cabinet meetings. The current Vice President, Joe Biden, has virtually been assigned the role of court jester. In this case, however, his own behavior has contributed to his undignified position; presumably Paul Ryan would fare better than Joe Biden has.
The Case for Nominating Romney Versus Not Nominating Romney
The Republican Party has found its success during previous increasingly liberal decades by compromising repeatedly with liberals. They have thus slowly drifted away from staunch conservatism. The seasoned “establishment” Republicans want to continue this trend with the nomination of Mitt Romney, arguing that he will help to capture moderate votes, and perhaps even some liberal votes, helping Republicans to unseat Obama in the general election.
However, the tide of history can change, and has changed in the past. The Tea Party movement is one indication of a possible change of heart in the American people, driven by economic problems and by the need to face reality. Economic austerity often motivates philosophical corrections and a shift toward conservatism. The Republican establishment agenda of compromise and of seeking moderate votes will not attract votes when Americans are drifting towards conservatism. Instead, it will frustrate people who want true change. When the base gets alienated, they will not go to the polls, and the reduced voter participation will cancel out any gain that was made by compromising to get moderate votes.
Do We Court the Moderates, or Do We Go For a Bold Course-Correction?
The History of Republican primaries and conventions also indicates that the nomination of moderates or liberals (like Romney) often disappoints the Republican base, and leads to defeat in the general election. Republican Convention historian Dr. Barbara Haney, a RNC convention delegate from Alaska herself, discusses the surprising history of Republican conventions, a history which seems to indicate that the unseating of a lukewarm presumptive nominee by a more conservative alternative during a convention actually improves the chances of winning the general election against the incumbent Democrat.
The enthusiatic rally of support observed this week for Paul Ryan indicates that America might be ready for such a course correction towards conservatism. A moderate candidate like Romney gets half-hearted, lukewarm support, while a strong, principled conservative like Paul Ryan reenergizes the Republican party overnight.
What Hands Can True Conservatives Still Play?
Can We Learn from History?
The new energized conservatives, including evangelical Christians and the Tea Party, may play any hand available to them at this convention, to nominate a true conservative in place of Mitt Romney. This might actually be a good idea, based on Barabara Haney’s historical analysis, which showed an 88% chance of success in unseating an incumbent Democrat following the vetting process of a brokered convention, compared with a paltry 31% chance of success in unseating the Democrat incumbent following an uneventful first-ballot nomination of a presumptive nominee like Romney.
Lincoln and Reagan, products of the "brokered convention;" NOT "presumptive nominees."
Ronald Reagan and Abraham Lincoln are examples of the 88% successes, which illustrate Barbara Haney’s historical analysis and theories, on the beneficial nature of brokered conventions.
So it boils down to: do you play chicken, compromise, court the moderate vote, and risk having only a 33% chance of defeating Obama, or do you boldly embrace the uncertainty of the brokered convention, nominate a candidate capable of energizing the general election (like Reagan or Lincoln), and go for the 88% chance of defeating Obama? And do you put your energizing candidate in the Vice President slot, or in the President slot?
“Establishment” Republicans are making a fallacious assumption in promoting Romney; they are assuming that a conservative candidate of strong character will not attract liberal votes. Abraham Lincoln disproved that fear, Ronald Reagan disproved that fear, and, incidentally, Paul Ryan has already disproved that fear in his home district of Janesville, Wisconsin, which is liberal, yet has elected conservative Paul Ryan for seven consecutive terms, because of his integrity, his character, and his reliably.
Jim Thorpe testimony on Paul Ryan’s character and popularity:
Incidentally, Paul Ryan is not the only Republican with the character and integrity capable of attracting liberal and moderate votes; add to that list Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, and Michelle Bachmann, among others.
The Romney campaign chose him (Paul Ryan) to deliver the Republican base vote amid fears that die-hard conservatives could cost him the White House by staying at home on election day rather than turning out for a candidate they are ambivalent about….
But that strategy was not working. The US is so polarised that there are, according to the polls, few undecided voters left. Compared with 2008, when about 25% of the electorate had still to make up their minds at this stage in the election, only about 5% are undecided. Both the Democratic and Republican strategists have concluded that the winner on 6 November will be the campaign that fires up its own supporters, that gets its base out, rather than the one that wins over the independent swing voters….
Larry Sabato, professor of politics at the University of Virginia, said: “It is base v base. There are hardly any independents.” At the cost of winning over a percentage of that small group in the centre, the campaigns risked alienating their core support, he said.
This analysis supports my arguments and the historical findings of Barbara Haney; that a conservative candidate may secure more votes than a moderate at certain times in history. 2012 is one of those times.
Is It Too Late To Change Our Minds?
Aren’t Delegates Committed to Voting for Romney?
Apparently, it’s not too late to change our minds, and Republican historian Barbara Haney indicates that in the last 21 Republican conventions where the nominee, like Romney, was not an incumbent President, 43% of presumptive nominees were unseated at the convention. Romney, too, can be unseated. There is historically a 43% probability of that.
How Can Somebody Who Has Over 51% of the Delegates be Unseated?
Here comes the next surprise: RNC convention rules contain some surprises.
Whether it is by the wisdom of our predecessors or by fluke, RNC convention rules appear to allow for delegates to change their minds about candidates between the primaries and the convention. Although there has been some dispute over this, the 2008 convention raised this issue for a delegate from Utah, and the RNC Legal Counsel Jennifer Sheehan upheld the freedom of delegates to change their minds, writing:
The RNC does not recognize a state’s binding of national delegates, but considers each delegate a free agent who can vote for whoever they choose.
and The national convention allows delegates to vote for the individual of their choice, regardless of whether the person’s name is officially placed into nomination or not.
Why would the architects of democracy allow such uncertainty and reversibility in RNC primary and convention rules? Presumably they assumed that delegates will be honorable and will not to change their minds frivolously; that they will make a serious effort to vote (in the first ballot) for the candidate they were “bound” to by the primaries. But ultimately, they are allowed to consider events and developments prior to the Republican Convention, and are allowed to change their votes, or to abstain from voting, if they feel it is in the best interests of their constituents. It could be argued in 2012 that the majority of primary voters wanted a solid conservative to represent them, and Mitt Romney is not that solid conservative. We have the unusual case where delegates could honestly believe that they will be more faithful to the wishes of the people if they abandon Mitt Romney. It is such an eventuality that would motivate the architects to include some flexibility into the system. After all, our elected Representatives and Senators are not bound to vote the party line after their election either, and are allowed to use their best judgment in response to developing events.
What Could Motivate a “Bound” Delegate to Change Their Vote or to Abstain?
Internal tension within the Republican Party is undermining the security of Romney’s projected victory.
Ben Swann, a Fox News anchor from Cincinnati, Ohio, produced a segment of Reality Check, explaining why he believes that internal tension within the Republican Party may be undermining the security of Romney’s projected victory. According to Ben Swann’s Reality Check, The Liberty Movement (conservatives who support Ron Paul) is taking over the GOP. Reality Check suggests that the Republican Party might be winning the Texas battle at the moment, but could actually be losing the primary war to conservatives. Some claim that Ron Paul may have recruited as many as 1,000 delegates going into the Tampa convention, reducing the support Romney thinks that he has:
Ron Paul’s not-so-secret plot for the GOP convention- ABC News
Fox Reality Check is not alone in their suspicions. Newt Gingrich also acknowledged that Ron Paul is the “biggest danger” for Romney in Tampa. As Ron Paul wins over delegates Romney thought he had, it becomes difficult to make any projections about the convention at all. For example, 1,144 delegates become only 144 delegates if somebody wins over 1,000 of them. Extreme example, but illustrates the point.
Very recently, a conservative movement has surfaced issuing an appeal to 20,000 RNC members and delegates at the Convention called DumpRomney. They propose that dumping Romney would be accomplished by “bound” delegates conscientiously abstaining from voting in the first ballot. When Romney does not get the required 1144 votes in the first ballot, then all delegates are released to vote their conscience in subsequent ballots, and new candidates can be added to the list of contenders. Not only can previous contenders like Santorum, Gingrich, Ron Paul and Michelle Bachmann be added, but new names can also be added. Sarah Palin? Scott Walker? Paul Ryan? Anybody’s guess. DumpRomney does not advocate any particular candidate; they simply advocate the dumping of Romney at the RNC convention.
Ron Paul’s campaign has claimed to have won over 500-1,000 delegates. The DumpRomney folks may or may not have success in persuading delegates to abstain in the first ballot. This split in the Republican Party makes Romney’s nomination in the first ballot very uncertain.
The Battle Is Still On
The present battle for delegates is (not surprisingly) not covered by the mainstream media, who would love to see liberal Romney as the Republican nominee.
The Republican Party is also not advertising the conflict. Public show of division is rarely wise.
Most of the Media is liberal and would love to run against Mitt Romney, who would be challenged to offer anything different from what Obama has offered.
“Establishment” Republicans are not in a rush to advertise disunity to their opposition.
Conservatives hoping to make a course correction in the Republican Party are not in a rush to advertise their plans and their tactics.
But now, for those of us who are rooting for a brokered convention, for a replacement of Mitt Romney with a true conservative, for the election of the next Ronald Reagan or Abraham Lincoln, this, 1 week before the Republican Convention, when the plans have been laid and the agenda is set, is a good time to remind everyone to have an open mind and a positive attitude toward the possibility of a brokered convention.
This Convention is Bound to Be Very Exciting
There is no question that this Republican Convention is bound to be very exciting.
It also holds the potential to alter the course of history dramatically.
Let’s presume little: historically speaking, Mitt’s odds are 57:43.
Much is going on behind the scenes that the media is not telling us about.
However, if Mitt does get the nomination, our chances of beating Obama are reduced by a factor of about three.
Can Romney Still Redeem Himself?
Can Mitt Romney convince Republican conservatives that he is capable of the kind of leadership that the fiscal and moral challenges of 2012 demand?
There was a time when political promises carried more weight. But a new era of political dishonesty has been inaugurated with Obama’s demonstrated ability to about face, and to thumb his nose at his own previous promises.
The lies, reversals, security leaks, and imperial mandates characterizing the Obama administration have led many into shock and disbelief that so much could transpire in less than four years. Obama rules by issuing mandates each time Congress and the Senate fail to approve the legislation he wants. No FBI, police, or security force has materialized to challenge Barack Obama on his actions, to label him a traitor, or to drag him off in chains.
The Department of Homeland Security similarly neglects it’s duties, and seems to be headed by a “liberal sisterhood of plundering hacks” who are consumed in an Animal-House style sexual harassment scandal.
In the past, the news media would also have kept presidents and politicians accountable for their promises. In 2012, they don’t. The media clearly has a political agenda, an extremely liberal one not shared by the majority of Americans, an agenda which 2/3 of America opposes, and the media misuses their profession to misinform the public, attempting to steer them towards liberalism. Liberal Presidents and politicians get away with more and more lying. No behavior on the part of liberals shocks the media; neither lies (Obama) nor incompetence (Biden) shock anyone. Media now actively covers for the liberal politicians whom they favor. They excuse any behavior by candidates who continue to advocate lower and lower standards of morality and accountability in our society.
In this atmosphere, it will be difficult for Romney to acquire the credibility to energize the Republican base and to get them to the polls. His recent statements in support of gay adoption and gay Boy Scout leaders do little to improve his credibility as a conservative or as a Republican.
Previous to 2012, Romney might have had a better chance to redeem himself.
But today, an alternate, more principled nominee with a history of strong character is more likely to be believed, and would serve both the Republican Party and our nation much better in 2012.
May God Bless, Help, and Direct America!
May God bless, help, and direct America… starting with the Republican Convention on August 27- 30, 2012.
Numerous moral and ethical leaders have indicated that this election is the most important election of a lifetime, an election which will determine the future character of America; strong, responsible and autonomous nation, or bankrupt dissolute welfare state. The movie 2016 predicts disaster for America if Barack Obama is re-elected on November 6th.
What’s at Stake: Can the People (2/3 of America) Be Highjacked by Media and Politicians (Democrat and Republican), or Does Our Democratic System Still Work?
On Tuesday, May 29, 2012, Texans held their Republican primary.
Voter turnout was low, about 10%.
Associated Press (AP) announced a projection indicating that Romney had secured at least 97 delegates, bringing him up to the 1144 delegates needed to win the Republican nomination.
Romney made an acceptance speech.
President Obama telephoned Romney to congratulate him.
Assocciated Press Projected a Romney Win; Most Media Sources Parroted the Report
The picture from AP's perspective: Orange=Romney, Green=Santorum, Yellow=Paul, Purple=Gingrich. However, this map neglects the delegates reclaimed recently by Ron Paul's "delegate strategy."
The mainstream and liberal media flocked to repeat and report the AP projected result:
Associated Press Yahoo ABC news
CNN news made an independent estimation (independent of the Associated Press report) indicating a similar conclusion, using the words “unofficially clinched the Republican presidential nomination” Huffington Post
Even some Conservative News sources such as Fox and The Blaze proclaimed the AP estimate, indicating a Romney win.
Other Media More Cautious
The Conservative Drudge Report was strangely silent. Wall Street Journal reported cautiously that “Mitt Romney Tuesday night claimed(my italics) his win in the Texas primary gives him the requisite number of delegates to clinch the Republican presidential nomination.”
Some Reports Question Romney’s and Associated Press’ Claims of Victory
Ben Swann, a Fox News anchor from Cincinnati, Ohio, produced a segment of Reality Check, explaining why he believes that internal tension within the Republican Party may be undermining the security of Romney’s projected victory.
According to Ben Swann’s Reality Check from last week, The Liberty Movement (conservatives who support Ron Paul) is taking over the GOP. On Tuesday, a new segment of Reality Check suggests that the Republican Party might be winning the Texas battle at the moment, but could actually be losing the primary war to conservatives.
More details on Reality Check’s claims will be discussed below; some claim that Ron Paul may have as many as 1,000 delegates going into the Tampa convention, compared with Romney’s present 1,081 delegates (the number of Romney delegates is under dispute, more below).
Fox’s Reality Check is not alone in their suspicions.
Newt Gingrich also acknowledged just last week that Ron Paul is the “biggest danger” for Romney in Tampa. Gingrich pointed out that Paul supporters have gathered an unexpected number of delegates at state Republican conventions recently in Alaska, Colorado, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri and Nevada. Apparently, the number of delegates acquired by a candidate continues to change after the primary, with delegates changing allegiance, and Ron Paul is raking them in.
My previous calculations, based on Associated Press data (obtained from Wikipedia through USA Today), indicated that Mitt Romney could not possibly claim the nomination before the Texas primary, and even then, he could only claim it if he got almost all 155 delegates.
Since then, quite a few things have changed, including the fact that Ron Paul is converting delegates who were previously committed to Romney to his own side.
According to present Wikipedia delegate counts (based on month-old AP projections, plus Texas numbers from a website called The Green Papers) , Mitt Romney is still short of 1144 delegates. He has only 1081. The Wikipedia report also neglects the reduction in Romney delegates that would result from Ron Paul’s amassing of delegates.
Where is AP getting it’s most recent numbers from? Why are the new numbers contradicting AP’s numbers from one month ago?
What are AP’s most recent numbers? Wikipedia does not use AP numbers for its Texas update; it is using The Green Papers numbers instead, and AP’s numbers are not in evidence.
How is it possible that Ron Paul seems to be reversing primaries that are already over, and seems to be wining delegates who were previously counted as Romney voters?
Conflicting Reports; Who’s Right and Who’s Wrong?
Media Research Center's Times Square Billboard in New York City
So which is it?
Are Associated Press (and the mainstream media quoting them) and CNN wrong in their projections? Are they trying to influence the election by bluffing?
Does Ron Paul pose a serious threat to Romney as indicated by Fox’s Reality Check, Gingrich’s interview, Wall Street Journal’s caution, Drudge Report’s silence, and my humble calculations?
Is somebody lying and spinning, or is the primary election system so complex that nobody can project results accurately?
The news blackout appears to be aimed at protecting the Obama administration, while continuing attempts to discredit the Catholic Church.
Aside:Thus continues the now decades-long misrepresentation of the Catholic Church abuse sandal. In actual fact, the Catholic Church has the lowest frequency of offense towards children on earth. Children are at greater risk of abuse in their own homes and in public schools than they are, or have ever been, in the Catholic Church.
Credibility of the Mainstream Media
Back to the point – should we be considering an Associated Press and mainstream media attempt to spin reporting on the Republican primary?
Do liberals have a preference for running against Romney, versus running against one of the more conservative alternative candidates?
What is AP’s history on the Republican primary?
Has AP been wrong before?
The answer to all of these questions is yes.
Liberals do have a preference for running against Romney, they believe he is easier to defeat than the other candidates.
AP has called results prematurely in the Republican primary
AP has been wrong before
Most importantly, the media has even shown a willingness to participate in a news blackout, when that is advantageous to the far left and to the Obama administration.
Now, the Associated Press is making projections that do not jive with the estimates of others, nor with their own previous estimates. They seem to be favoring Romney.
Fox’s Reality Check (quoted below) seems to believe that AP estimates of Romney’s delegate counts are wildly misleading.
Even Wikipedia’s charts of delegate counts don’t seem to be updated to reflect conservative changes that have occurred during the past month. Additions to Romney’s delegate count acquired in Texas are updated on Wikipedia, quoting the amateurish The Green Papers website’s numbers, but whole statemajorities acquired by Ron Paul and acknowledged by Newt Gingrich are absent from the Wikipedia charts.
Considering the total news blackout last week, in which ABC and NBC failed to mention the story of the decade (concerted legal attack on the Obama administration by Catholic organizations), the mainstream media can no longer be relied upon to give unbiased facts on the 2012 election. We, as citizens, are back to knowing very little about what is going on in our nation—two hundred years ago this was limited by the speed of the pony express; today, this is due to intentional news blackouts and manipulation of information by radical media.
Fox’s Reality Check, Gingrich, and Ron Paul’s people – Ron Paul is Still Collecting Delegates at a Striking Rate
The fact is, this is a remarkably unusual election. Our nation is divided, not by economic status, not by gender or by race, but we are divided by philosophy. Liberal versus Conservative.
And the balance between liberals and conservatives is changing.
This trend has been evident for a very long time. The closeness of the 2000 election with counting of chads, as well as the unexpected unseating of Hillary Clinton by Obama were indications of division and of close competitions which are full of surprises. Wisconsin’s going Republican in 2010 was an indication that shift toward conservatism may be occurring. Recent Gallup polls confirm this shift.
The two positions, Liberal and Conservative, are stalemated on several issues for which it is difficult to imagine any compromise:
Economy: the liberal solution, spending, is not compatible with the conservative solution, cutting spending. A compromise, doing nothing, would (duh) do nothing while we watch our economy go down the tubes.
Abortion cannot be legal and illegal at the same time. It cannot be a “right” and murder at the same time.
Marriage cannot be between one man and one woman, while also being between two men or two women. A choice has to be made.
There are numerous additional issues on which now polarized liberal and conservative positions would struggle to find a middle ground.
According to Reality Check , even the Republican Party is now divided. There appears to be struggle between Republican National Committee (RNC) leadership and a collection of conservatives whom it is difficult to label, but who seem to be rallying behind Ron Paul. Ron Paul is amassing the support of delegates at a striking rate; there is reason to believe that Ron Paul has 1,000 delegates supporting him already. Reality Check calls these Ron Paul supporters the Liberty Party, but I suspect that this group includes a much wider spectrum of conservative people.
Ron Paul Supporters
Ron Paul’s supporters have been dismissed in the past, because of his minority following and because of some extreme policies. But now the numbers of supports that Ron Paul is claiming are growing, and the RNC seems to be evading the obvious question; where are all these Ron Paul supporters coming from?
Previously, I was never a Ron Paul supporter. As a conservative I now support some of Ron Paul’s policies, but consider some of his positions as dangerously naïve; particularly his attitudes towards foreign policy, defense budget, and legalization of drugs.
However, the more I learn about Romney, I begin to see myself rallying behind Ron Paul in preference to Romney, when my top two preferences seem unlikely to be available (Santorum and Gingrich).
Why don’t some trust Romney?
Romney has no established philosophy driving his politics. His philosophy, if any, appears to be utilitarian; it changes according to convenience and to circumstances. His commitment to truth or to Judeo-Christian morality is not clear.
Journalist Daniel Gross sees Romney as approaching politics in the same terms as a business competing in markets, in that successful executives do not hold firm to public stances over long periods of time, but rather constantly devise new strategies and plans to deal with new geographical regions and ever-changing market conditions. Political profiler Ryan Lizza notes the same question regarding whether Romney’s business skills can be adapted to politics, saying that “while giving customers exactly what they want may be normal in the corporate world, it can be costly in politics”. Writer Robert Draper holds a somewhat similar perspective: “The Romney curse was this: His strength lay in his adaptability. In governance, this was a virtue; in a political race, it was an invitation to be called a phony.” Writer Benjamin Wallace-Wells sees Romney as a detached problem solver rather than one who approaches political issues from a humanistic or philosophical perspective. Journalist Neil Swidey views Romney as a political and cultural enigma, “the product of two of the most mysterious and least understood subcultures in the country: the Mormon Church and private-equity finance,” and believes that has led to the continued interest in a 1983 episode in which Romney kept his family dog on the roof of his car during a long road trip. Political writer Joe Klein views Romney as actually more conservative on social issues than he portrayed himself during his Massachusetts campaigns and less conservative on other issues than his presidential campaigns have represented, and concludes that Romney “has always campaigned as something he probably is not.”
Romney has changed his positions on abortion and on government health care. Both of these are major issues in this election, and both have a huge impact on the economy. Whether Romney’s changes in philosophy are genuine and permanent, or whether they reflect a willingness to alter his beliefs pragmatically over time, remains to be seen.
After four years of President Obama’s drifting and reversals, I would consider the choice of a Presidential candidate who has a history of flip-flopping, evolving, etch-a-sketching, or whatever you want to call it, simply irresponsible. There is a chance that Romney’s conversions (on ObamaCare and on abortion) are genuine, but the risk that they are not genuine is too large to take. Mitt Romney is still the only Republican candidate on the ballot who has refused to sign the Susan B. Anthony Presidential Pro-Life Pledge.
If we elect Romney, we could have another Obama on our hands, who promises one thing, then delivers something quite different.
Reversals on ObamaCare and on abortion by Romney would be catastrophic – not only on the “social” front, but on the economic front as well. Socialized medicine and the killing of future citizens by abortion would have an equally devastating effect on the economy of the nation as they would have on the nation’s morality.
Flip-flopping, evolving, and etch-a-sketchingare not the marks of a candidate for President of the United States.
Flip-flopping, Evolving, Etch-a-Sketching: not good marks of a President
They are the marks of confusion at best, and the marks of a liar, at worst.
Who Would Support Ron Paul over Romney?
Above were the reasons why I would support Romney only after every other possibility has been exhausted for Republican nomination. All three, Gingrich, Paul and Santorum, have established a more consistent conservative record of supporting Judeo-Christian morality (and the economic prosperity which this morality fosters) than has Mitt Romney. And I don’t think that I am so unique. In fact, although I have never joined the Tea Party or participated in their functions, I typify quite closely the average Tea Party member.
Many conservatives, whether fiscal, social, or religious conservatives, could conceivably be persuaded to support Ron Paul, or Newt Gingrich, or Rick Santorum for these reasons over Romney. Tea Party, Evangelicals, and Catholics are just a few of the conservative groups who might likely support Ron Paul over Mitt Romney.
If the eccentric and perseverant Energizer Bunny calling himself Ron Paul, the medical doctor who opposes abortion and who has personally delivered over 4,000 babies in his lifetime, continues to amass delegates to support him, and if he makes it to the Republican Convention in Tampa in August, there could be some big surprises occurring at that convention.
My knowledge of the very complex electoral process is not sufficient to forecast whether Santorum or Gingrich will go to the convention and be listed on the ballot as well as Ron Paul. But Ron Paul is now almost sure to be there. In fact, his supporters have already organized a massive 3-day party, to be attended by 40,000 to 100,000 people, including as much as 1,000 delegates supporting Ron Paul, in Florida immediately prior to the Tampa convention.
The RNC is Worried
Delusional speculations, you may be thinking?
Well, the RNC appears to be worried about these possibilities, too.
The Massachusetts RNC leadership is apparently sufficiently worried about Ron Paul’s growing popularity that it is threatening delegates that they must sign an affidavit that they will vote for Romney on the first round of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, or be charged with perjury. They would not be threatening delegates and creating last minute busy-work if there was no danger to their RNC establishment’s agenda.
This does not make it look like Ron Paul is a harmless eccentric, or that Mitt Romney has the nomination bagged.
How Can Delegate Counts Be Reversed?
How can Ron Paul be reversing primary election results, and why is the media failing to acknowledge recent reversals?
Apparently, Ron Paul has discovered a strategy that circumvents the Republican establishment, and endeavors to facilitate a conservative takeover of the Republican party. The strategy is called the “delegate strategy,” it seems to be working. It involves focusing campaign efforts on the ability to win over state delegates, rather than winning the popular vote.
Instead of focusing on getting the votes of voters at primaries, Ron Paul focuses on getting the votes of the delegates who are elected at state conventions and caucuses, typically a couple of weeks after the primary.
Ron Paul supporters use an extensive grass roots campaign network to influence local officials, who then influence higher-up officials. Basically, delegates are persuaded to switch their vote to Ron Paul weeks after the popular vote at the primary, and this essentially reverses the effect of the primary.
For example, take the state of Massachusetts. Just like in Texas tonight, Romney won the popular vote there. But in the congressional district caucuses, where the delegates are actually chosen, Mitt Romney, despite having been Governor of that state, was embarrassed, when during the district caucuses, Ron Paul supporters took 16 of 19 delegate slots. In doing so, the Boston Globe reports that those Paul supporters, they beat out major names in the Massachusetts Republican Party. Including state house minority leader, Bradley Jones Jr., Kerry Healey, the former Lieutenant Governor, Sheriff Frank Cousins of Essex County, and Republican’s most recent nominee for governor, Charles D. Baker.
This strategy is discussed further by Chris Miles at policymic. Chris Miles concludes: “Boom, Ron Paul’s system looks like it is working.”
How Many States and How Many Delegates Does Ron Paul Now Have?
The Republican race is not won through a series of state primary contests. It’s won by accumulating delegates at state conventions, which typically occur a few weeks after the state primary contests.
In the states where the primaries are over, Ron Paul is winning large numbers of delegates, leading to massive fights at State Conventions across the country. It’s also leading to many new people taking over the GOP leadership in these states, and those people happen to be Paul supporters. That has also led to Governor Romney creating a shadow party in some of these states. This reflects the intensity of the competition that is raging in the Republican Party, all the while unreported by the liberal Mass Media, who would love to help push Romney as the candidate Obama will oppose.
What are the rules?
Are delegates in the Republican Party bound to vote for a specific candidate, as determined by the popular vote of the Primary?
Or is the popular vote an advisory one?
According to the 2008 Rules of the Republican Party, 25% of delegates are unpledged and are free agents at the convention (this year in Tampa) These include party officials such as the party chair or national party committee members. But 75% of delegates are pledged delegates, indicating that they are “bound” by the popular vote from the primary.
However, the Legal Counsel for the RNC made a ruling in 2008 that ‘The RNC does not recognize a state’s binding of national delegates, but considers each delegate a free agent who can vote for whoever they choose.’” This statement allows all delegates to be free agents, voting for whomever they choose.
So there is a contradiction.
It is not clear how this dispute will play out.
For comparison, Newt Gingrich’s delegates are still bound to vote for Gingrich in Tampa. Newt has the option to release his delegates to vote for Romney as he wishes. But his delegates will be bound to vote either for Gingrich or for Romney in the first two ballots of the Republican convention in Tampa. If there are more than two rounds, they are free to vote for any candidate. Incidentally, Newt Gingrich has not yet released his delegates to vote for Romney in Tampa.
SO: the rules are not yet clear. This is going to be an exciting summer and an exciting convention.
Has This Ever Been Tried Before?
I’ve discussed the Harding election previously, in which Harding went into the Convention with only 20% as many delegates as his opponent had. However, since no delegate had the required 51% (1144) at first, several rounds of voting took place. Eventually, Harding ended up winning the nomination and then winning the election to become President.
I am not sure how the details of the primary worked out, but the fact is that when candidates do not have the requisite 51% (today 1144) delegates before the convention, a brokered convention is held, and some big surprises can surface after several rounds of voting.
This system was wisely put in place to create a process of elimination, so that when there are numerous candidates, as there are in 2012, and not one of them gets 51% of the vote, a minority leader does not end up leading the United States as President. A “brokered” convention steers a process of repeated voting and elimination, which culminates in a candidate who is supported by at least 51% of the U.S.
At present, Romney is still short of 1144 delegates by many estimates. Even AP’s estimates make assumptions and guesses about delegates who are not bound (at least 25% or more of them are not bound), and then even bound delegates are no longer bound after two rounds of voting if more than one candidate enters the convention. With Ron Paul’s number of delegates rapidly growing (and thus Mitt Romney’s number of delegates rapidly shrinking, something that AP does not seem to have acknowledged yet), the numbers are in such a flux in 2012 that it is difficult to make any projections at all.
How Many Delegates Still Up For Grabs?
According to the Wikipedia charts (from USA Today, AP and The Green Papers), this is the present estimated delegate count:
Note: If Ron Paul continues to succeed in winning delegates who were previously though to be “bound,” all of the above AP numbers become meaningless. Note also, that the total of delegates still to be determined by the primary votes from the above table is 359, while the AP estimates from table before that listed 537 as still to be determined.
The Final Outcome
The outcome of this primary – Romney versus a much more conservative candidate like Gingrich, Paul or Santorum – could have a powerful impact on the future of the United States. There is reason for concern. Romney is not similar to the other 3 remaining candidates, and a Romney presidency could be much different than what the conservatives who elect him might imagine. In some ways, Romney has the potential to “evolve” or to reverse himself almost as badly as Obama has done during the course of the last four years.
If all this speculation by Fox’s Reality Check, by Newt Gingrich, by Ron Paul and his supporters, and by me turns out to be mistaken, Mitt Romney will have the nomination, and he will run against Obama for President. In that case, he will have my vote. That is the highest probability scenario.
But if reports of a power struggle in the RNC between moderates and conservatives are correct, there is not only a good chance that Ron Paul’s name will be on the ticket at Tampa, but there is also a good chance that a large number of conservative delegates (previously Santorum and Gingrich supporters) might join him. If Ron Paul’s “delegate strategy” turns out to be legitimate and successful, Ron Paul could even defeat Romney.
With the present NEWS BLACKOUT orchestrated by the liberal media, this primary may not be over until the Republican Convention in Tampa (August 27 – August 30, 2012) is over.
Is the Republican Primary Over?
No, it’s Not Over Yet
Does Mitt Romney Have the Nomination?
No, Mitt Romney Doesn’t Have the Nomination Yet
Four Years Ago: Hillary, Like Romney, Was the Presumed Candidate
Where is This Election Headed?
Hillary for President
April 22, 2008:
In April of 2008, Hillary and Barak were neck-in-neck. Hillary won the Pennsylvania Primary. Then the Clinton campaign raised another $10 million.
Hillary and Barak continued to battle it out, about 1 percentage point apart, as they had been throughout the primary campaign. Hillary had been the presumed nominee for quite some time before the primary, and many believed that she could not lose.
Obama was giving her a run for her money and edging her out, but only by about 1%, and neither Hillary nor supporters were ready to concede. The race was close. Estimated Delegate Score Card over time can be found here.
The media was not talking about the primary “dragging out,” or about any need to “coalesce behind one candidate” yet.
The battle continued until Obama had enough delegates to win the primary, and he only won by a very slim margin. Hillary only conceded on June 7, 2008, 4 days after Barak secured enough delegates to claim the nomination on June 3, 2008.
Who is Leading the Republican Primary Race Today?
Short Answer: Depends on who’s counting and depends on how you classify the votes.
If the mainstream media and the Republican establishment are counting (Romney supporters), Romney is the leading candidate. If Conservatives,Tea Party, and evangelicals are counting, the race is way too young to call. 50-60% of the delegates have not yet been assigned, and anything could happen. It’s much too early to tell.
Mitt Romney vs Conservatives Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, and Ron Paul
How Do You Classify the Votes?
If all four candidates attract a random segment of the American vote, and Santorum’s recent bowing out spreads the votes evenly among all candidates, then Romney is winning.
But if Conservatives are wedded to voting for conservatives like Santorum/Gingrich/Paul, and moderates are voting for Romney, then the exit of one conservative candidate will swing all the conservative votes to the next conservative candidate, and not to Romney. That is certainly the case with my vote: in the first place, my vote goes to Santorum. Failing that, to Gingrich. Failing that to Paul. Finally, failing that, to Romney. By this argument (see chart below), Romney has only 23-25% of the vote so far, and the Conservatives have 16-26% of the vote. Again, way too early to call. Conservatives and Romney neck-in-neck, and we have not even heard from 49-61% of America yet!
Uncertainty in the Delegate Counts
The Media has been very quick to assign delegates which are in any way uncertain, uncommitted or disputed, to Romney. Why? That will be discussed later below. Those mainstream media counts can be found at Wikipedia.
Conservative counts, on the other hand are made by more stringent criteria. The Santorum campaign count, for example, shows remarkably different numbers.
The bottom line is, however, that with 49 to 61% of the delegates still unassigned, and with conservative states like Texas (155 delegates available with winner-takes-all) still in the offing, the race if far from over, unless the media (and the Republican establishment) manages to convince everyone that the race is over before it really is.
Here is the range of numbers claimed by various sources, depending on your source of delegate counts and assignment of contested delegates:
Number of delegates
Percentage of Total (2286) Delegates
Delegates still unassigned
Bottom Line Today:
Conservatives could be leading Romney by a much larger margin than Barak had on Hillary in 2008.
Lessons for us from 2008′s Democrat Primary
Why are some conservatives giving up?
Do they believe the media already?
Do they want to let the Republican establishment to steer the nomination, instead of the voters steering it?
It’s still early, and the race is far from over.
It’s not over until the fat lady sings (me).
Stay in there, Rick/Newt/Ron!
A conservative coalition (if you go by Rick Santorum’s numbers) is leading with a slight edge against Romney so far, just as Barak was leading against Hillary in April 2008.
If you guys stay in there, you can prevent Romney from getting the 1144 delegates he needs for the nomination. BTW, Rick’s suspended campaign could also be un-suspended at a later date.
Then, when nobody has the required 1144 delegates, the process starts again at the brokered convention. As the candidates with least delegates are eliminated, it will boil down to one conservative against Romney, and that conservative will have a great chance of defeating Romney. America is ready for a real change.
The delegate counts so far tell us that Americans are definitely waffling on Romney; they prefer a true conservative. Tea Party candidates, evangelicals, and many other conservatives are nervous about Romney’s liberal past and the reliability of his new found conservative “conversion.”
We’ve just had a taste of somebody who promises one thing but delivers quite another- Obama.
Not to say that Romney’s recent commitments to conservatism are not appreciated or are not genuine.
We’re just a bit nervous about how reliable Romney’s recent “conversion” to conservatism is, given his past.
Time to Put America Ahead of Personal Success
Rick/Newt/Ron should team up to stay in the race for the sole purpose of preventing Romney from acquiring the 1144 delegates he needs for nomination. In 1920, there was a brokered convention where the previous underdog candidate eventually won. There would still be hope of putting a true conservative in the White House. Even if a particular candidate is not that person, they will have contributed to the restoration of our great nation by contributing to the election of another conservative.
What Have You Got Against Mitt Romney?
Well, up front let us say that if Mitt Romney is nominated, we should all back him, campaign for him, and elect him as President of the United States.
Why? Because he has stated that he will oppose federal funding of abortion, that he will repeal ObamaCare, and that he will promote fiscal responsibility and limited government. As opposed to Obama, who has stated (and done) the complete opposite.
But given Mitt Ronmey’s past positions, I’m just a bit nervous about how reliable Romney’s recent “conversion” to conservatism is. In my mind, the Presidency should be given to someone we are very sure of. More discussion of Romney at Committment to Truth; Romney vs Santorum.
Why mention “social issues” before “economic issues?”
“Social issues” (morality) come before economic issues because common sense and wisdom tell us what God already knows: that social issues drive the economics of a nation, and are the springboard from which a stable economy develops. If you kill all your future citizens, your economy will not prosper. If you overspend on an inefficient blundering health care system which provides free abortion, contraception and sterilization, your economy will take a blow. If you deny citizens freedom of conscience, sweeping Catholic hospital closings may result. “Social issues” are the first domino with the power to take the entire economy down.
Judeo-Christian morality, on which conservatism and the Constitution of the United States are based, is a success manual given to us by a loving God, which provides the wisdom needed to avoid pitfalls both personal and national.
Why Would the Media or the Republican Establishment Want to Steer Us Towards Romney?
It’s pretty clear that Romney is much less conservative than the other Republican options. He has supported abortion in the past, as well as supported socialized medicine, which became a template for ObamaCare. Of course, the liberal media, as well as the liberal billionaires who fund the liberal media, would prefer Romney to the more conservative candidates, just in case Obama loses. Hard to imagine that billionaires like George Soros, who make a hobby of attempting to steer global values with their accumulated billions, would not at least cover their bets partially in both parties, Democrat and Republican.
As for the Republican establishment, there are some who are comfortably entrenched in the less-than-perfect Republican establishment and who fear the effect that too much change and too many cuts may have on their comfort. There are also those who fail to realize that the dynamics have changed in this election, that so many people are so much more committed and involved in this election. That a giant has awoken. They fear that they will lose voters in the middle if they offer a strong and principled candidate who has demonstrated a reliable track record of conservatism.
Where are We Headed?
Time, and American voters, particularly today in the pirmaries, will determine where we are headed.
It is my hope that we still have a chance to elect a conservative to defeat Obama at the end of the day.
If not, my efforts will shift to praying for Romney’s strength and his commitment to the Judeo-Christian values on which this nation was founded. Romney has not been vetted or even questioned on his support of Judeo-Christian values. See Committment to Truth; Romney vs Santorum .
If voters have already jumped on board with Mitt Romney tonight, it will be a (premature) victory for the media and for the Republican establishment. It will be a sad moment for those true conservatives who had hoped to return to the important “social issues” which determine the success of everything else.
May God bless and guide America!
May God bless and guide the Republican Primary winner!
Top Republican officials have decided they no longer want to wait around for an official nominee.
Do radicals own the Republican Party, too?
What happened to the people’s vote?
With only 45% of the votes in, and the conservative candidate Santorum seriously gaining on the author of RomneyCare, Republican Officials are now issuing a mandate?
Santorum has finally produced a “mud-slinging” ad; it doesn’t sling mud, except literally, and it’s funny. America likes funny.
Rick Santorum’s latest funny, funny ad:
One more Santorum ad:
Santorum is what America admires
Americans are not Godless, promiscuous, radical, socialist, politically-correct, spineless people, as the radicals who dominate the media would like to make us think. We are not clones of what Hollywood has flooded movies and media with.
Americans are actually religious, faithful, conservative, democratic, and are courageous enough to resist being steered by radicals. Remember, 80% of Americans say that prayer is important to their daily lives. Is it surprising that Americans might choose a Godly man? Or that God might help him?
Still surprised at Rick Santorum’s recent success?
It is with hesitation that I embark on discussing the behavior of liberals, particularly in reference to recent labor disputes at the Wisconsin State Capitol, which is located 3 miles from my home and 3 blocks from my parish Church. Most often I try to avoid criticizing the behavior of others, keeping in mind the Biblical counsel:
How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me remove that splinter in your eye,’ when you do not even notice the wooden beam in your own eye? You hypocrite! Remove the wooden beam from your eye first; then you will see clearly to remove the splinter in your brother’s eye. – Luke 6:42
But events at the Wisconsin State Capitol in recent weeks have culminated in a situation that commands some discussion. The pursuit and cornering of conservative Senator Grothman by 200 aggressive liberals, ultimately requiring his rescue by firefighters, was broadcast on FOX news, but was glossed over by most liberal media last week:
This shocking event, which included shouting, intimidation, chanting “shame,” bleeped vulgar
No violence? Hmmm...
expletives, drum beating and blowing of whistles, reflected the general uncivilized aggressive attitudes displayed by demonstrators at the Wisconsin State Capitol during the past 3 weeks. It is a situation that could easily have caused injury and/or heart attack to the elderly Senator, and is at very least shameful in the lack of respect with which an elected representative of the people of the United States was treated by an angry liberal mob.
This shocking treatment of Senator Grotham by liberals illustrates quite a double standard, particularly when compared with the criticism conservatives suffered recently from liberal media regarding the use of crosshair imagery during the last election, particularly after the shooting of Representative Giffords, and at least while liberal media still thought that the shooter could be tied to conservatives.
The ultimate question with which I struggled for 3 weeks before writing this post, and with which all conservatives in America must struggle, is how does a reserved conservative like me, who tries to live by the golden rule (do unto others as you would have them do unto you) and by the rule of forbearance (assume the best imaginable explanation for another’s behavior), how do we deal with vocal and liberal opponents who do not feel constrained by the same behavioral guidelines that we respect and revere?
How do you win a battle against opponents who use aggressive tactics which you consider immoral and which you yourself refuse to use? Should we remain the silent majority?
So far this past month, liberal supporters of Wisconsin unions have broken a number of rules and regulations which are generally essential for the orderly operation of society, and which have never been observed in conservative demonstrations such as those involving the Tea Party or Pro-Life:
14 legislators have left the State of Wisconsin so that police could not force them to attend State legislature voting sessions that they are legally obliged to attend. These senators are sabotaging democracy and showing no respect for the people’s choices during the November 2010 election. They are advocating rule not by the majority, but by the loudest and the most aggressive.
Thousands of Madison teachers have not only gone on strike, depriving children of education, and have lied fraudulently about their motives, claiming to be sick. They are teaching our children to lie.
UW Madison doctors have appeared downtown handing out sick notes to demonstrators, a clear violation of medical ethics and a willful deception and cheating of the taxpayers by medical doctors. They are also teaching our children to lie.
Thousands of demonstrators have refused to leave the State Capitol at closing time, sleeping inside the Capitol and making it impossible for maintenance staff to do their work. Maintenance staff have indicated their fear of the crowds, not feeling safe in doing their work.
Police unions, whose jobs were unaffected by the proposed budget cuts, sympathized with the teachers unions, and stopped ticketing vehicles which were illegally parked downtown, as well as refusing to protect legislators like Senator Grothman from aggressive crowds. Liberal media gleefully claimed “peaceful demonstrators” and “no arrests” each day, when in actual fact Madison’s police appeared to be on strike were not performing all their duties.
Over the course of the 3 week demonstration, some claim that the demonstrators caused $7.5 million damage to the stately Madison Capitol building
Wisconsin State Capitol Building
which was constructed of 43 types of stone from six countries and eight states around 1910. The $7.5 million damage is larger than the original cost of the erecting the Capitol in 1910 ($7.25 million).
The Capitol building, probably for the first time in its 100-year history, began to stink.
Demonstrators have been imported into Madison by unions all over the U.S., from as far away as California. President Obama has also sent supporters and has voiced support for the unions, despite the fact that the President’s own federal workers do not enjoy the luxurious privileges the Wisconsin unions are trying to maintain for themselves. Wisconsin taxpayers are now the victims of the entire nation’s belligerent union hierarchy.
Homeless people have abandoned local Church shelters in favor of living in the Capitol building, where free pizza is provided by out-of-state union bosses.
Union demonstrators have abandoned all rules of professionalism and civility. Posters and
Sign with crosshairs over Governer Walker's face
chants reflect violence, hate and vulgarity, totally eclipsing the “crosshairs” controversy following the shooting of Representative Giffords this January. Signs have routinely compared Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker to Hitler, Benito Mussolini and Hosni Mubarak and showed the Wisconsin governor with a cross-hairs rifle sight over his face . Fourteen of the “100 best posters at the Wisconsin Capitol” are too vulgar to show on this website . One sign reads “Hey, Walker, WI Ranger, who’s gonna wipe yer ___ when U have a stroke???”
Live ammunition was found stashed outside the Wisconsin State Capitol by police.
Residents and groups surrounding the Madison Capitol building have suffered poor treatment from demonstrators. Our Holy Redeemer Catholic Church, part of Madison’s downtown Catholic Cathedral Parish, has struggled to keep parking open for Church members. When approached by Church staff with requests not to use our parking lot, demonstrators use vulgarity and tell Church staff to “get a life.” Police do not help either, they have stopped ticketing downtown.
Demonstrators have not been acting like teachers, but more like angry mobsters.
Demonstrators, as well as the liberal media, have misrepresented the issues, exaggerating and misquoting the Governor’s terms and failing to explain the rationale behind both points of view—pro-union and pro-balanced budget. Truth seems to have no role in this debate, and liberal media does not seem interested in discussion. Some representative photos from Vicki McKenna.
While 60,000 liberals skipped work, demonstrated and trashed the Wisconsin Capitol, 126,000 conservatives signed an online “Stand with Walker” petition, went to work, took care of their children who were abandoned by teachers, and prepared to pay for the damage the demonstrating minority was causing. Incidentally, there are only about 100,000 union members in Wisconsin, in contrast to the 5,000,000 taxpayers who do not have union benefits and are paying their bills.
It is an established fact that some demographic differences exist between liberals and conservatives. The differences are primarily philosophical, NOT racial or ethnic, as liberal media would imply:
The increased Church attendance and respect for marriage indicated above in conservatives reflects their willingness to conform to the Judeo-Christian values
encompassed by the Ten Commandments, on which our systems of law have historically been based. It is easy to see the projection of this voluntary self-restraint onto acceptable codes of public behavior, which translate into the peaceful and dignified political gatherings and respect for public property characteristic of Tea Party and Pro-Life gatherings nationwide – particularly in the January 2011 March for Life in Washington DC (just 2 weeks prior to the union demonstrations at the Wisconsin State Capitol), where 400,000 people gathered peacefully to show their support for Life, but which Madison’s liberal media did not mention at all.
This past month, the converse, a distinct LACK of voluntary self-restraint, lack of peaceful and dignified protests and lack of respect for public property, has been observed in downtown Madison during the union protests.
These recent events in Madison are by no means unique. In my 20+ years living as a conservative in liberal Madison, I have personally witnessed numerous times a dramatic difference in the demeanor of liberals and of conservatives in the public square.
Vigil for Life, Fewb 2010
One year ago at a Pro-Life rally in February of 2010, I observed over 1,000 reserved, well-dressed and well-behaved pro-lifers at Madison’s Library Mall standing in the winter cold, listening quietly to pro-life speakers (which included Senator Grotham), while 20 -30 liberal student radicals, rallying to the campus-wide spam invitation issued by student socialists, yelled, chanted, attempted to disrupt speeches, performed lascivious strip-tease in a nearby raised platform in front of children, and were finally restrained and led off by police. Madison’s liberal media did an abysmal job of reporting this event, failing to report the difference in numbers at this event (1,000 versus 25), and failing to report the difference in demeanor of the two groups. To read the brief Madison newspaper report, it would seem that opposing groups of similar size confronted each other briefly downtown.
This 40:1 ratio of civilized well-behaved citizens to loud disruptors at the Pro-Life rally above is similar to the 50:1 ratio of Wisconsin citizens who work and pay the bills to protesting union workers at the Wisconsin State Capitol last month (5 million to 100,000). Yet again, the minority is attempting to control the majority by intimidation.
Another recent contrast in the demeanor of liberals and conservatives is illustrated by my blog post on the Madison pro-marriage rally of Aug 1, 2010 . During the pro-marriage rally, Catholic Bishop of Madison led conservative attendees in praying the “Our Father,” while hundreds of liberals surrounded them yelling and chanting, disrupting the prayer and attempting to approach the podium where the Bishop was standing, again restrained by police.
I refrain from using the political labels Democrat or Republican intentionally. I include myself among numerous conservative independents who have never belonged to one political party, and whose beliefs are not in line with one party platform. However, I must say that in recent years I am finding myself (steered by my Pro-Life views) most often in sympathy with the Republican Party.
In addition, the uncivilized and inconsiderate behavior of liberal Democrats in recent years, observed in numerous situations similar to those described here, has struck me as threatening democracy and attempting to replace democracy with mob rule. No society can function like this. Any rational person must ask—why did the Republicans NOT walk out of Congress and the Senate when ObamaCare was on the table, but the Democrats DID walk out when they did not like the legislation being discussed in Wisconsin? How can democracy function when minority legislators hijack the democratic process by refusing to follow the rules?
The seeming readiness of liberals to break ALL rules – State Capitol visiting hour rules, legislative rules, teachers sick leave rules, medical ethics rules, rules of cleanliness, rules of polite and respectful discourse, rules of civilized language and behavior in front of children, rules regarding use of live ammunition, and common sense rules about public behavior – the breaking of all these rules makes discussion impossible. The demonstrators do not appear at all interested in discussion of the common good. They only seem interested in keeping their comfortable privileges by any means necessary, be that bullying, trashing Wisconsin’s State Capitol, or mob rule.
This is not the America we love and that our military risks their lives to protect.
It is time for the silent majority to become even MORE active than they were in November 2010.
Syte Reitz grew up in Queens, New York, in a family of Lithuanian immigrants who fled Nazi and Soviet domination during World War II. Her education includes a Ph.D. in Biochemistry, and post-doctoral work at Princeton University. Syte left her job as an Assistant Professor at Oakland University, Michigan, to devote herself to raising her children, and ultimately homeschooled them through the end of high school. She is a member of Madison's Cathedral Parish.