EDITOR OF REDSTATE
Morning Briefing for March 15, 2012
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The primary battle for Illinois’s 16th Congressional District is a case study in why Republicans do not fear conservatives and do not take conservatives seriously in the House of Representatives.
Consider, if you will, that what Jim DeMint has done in the United States Senate is make Republicans understand they might just be seriously challenged by candidates and major money if they go too far astray. After Bob Bennett went down to defeat by Mike Lee and the Republican favorite Trey Grayson went down to defeat by Rand Paul in Kentucky, suddenly Orrin Hatch became the junior partner in Utah’s conservative renaissance.
The House Republican Leaders don’t much care. They do not have to. Conservatives, time and time again, will not put their money where their mouth is. They like to fight policy battles, but sit out the political fights.
Harry Reid, the floor leader of the Democrats in the United States Senate, the most influential Democrat in the entire Congress, is innumerate. You see, he not only lacks an understanding of mathematics, apparently having no understanding of what kinds of sample sizes are needed to get an accurate sense of American public opinion, but he is also actively promoting his anti-math viewpoint against statistical, scientific polling.
Innumeracy is a real problem in America, said to be associated with problems like belief in pseudoscience, higher debt, problem gambling, and limited job prospects. Sadly, America is already suffering some of these consequences under the poor leadership of Harry Reid and his party. Since Harry Reid took over the Senate our debt has indeed skyrocketed, thanks in part to the failure of the Harry Reid Senate even to pass a budget at all, America’s job prospects have diminished, and the fad of global warming pseudoscience has continued unabated.
It’s easy to see why Clark County, Nevada wanted to return him to the Senate though, since innumeracy is what keeps the lights on there. I don’t understand why we must endure him as our Senate Majority Leader any more, though. Let’s take the Senate and knock him off in November.
Last week, the House passed a slam-dunk jobs bill (H.R. 3606) 390-23. The bill reduces red tape, securities regulations, and reporting requirements on small companies that desire to go public. It also eliminated some of the new regulations implemented under Dodd-Frank and Sarbanes-Oxley on companies that generate less than $1 billion in annual revenue. With all the unctuous complaints about partisanship, one would expect the Senate to harness this rare opportunity to work together and pass the bill expeditiously. With Harry Reid in charge of the Senate, all bets are off.
Reid announced that he would bring the House bill to the floor, but would attempt to attach a non-germane amendment to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank, which expires May 31, through 2015 and raise its loan limit from $100 billion to $140 billion. He is taking a no-brainer bill and sinking it with a poison pill. What’s worse, the consideration of the House jobs bill was supposed to be the prize to Republicans for agreeing not to block Obama’s judicial nominees that are being rammed through the Senate in short order.
Unfortunately, the Ex-Im corporate welfare bank is not necessarily a poison pill for many Republicans. In typical pale-pastel fashion, House leaders planned to bring a separate Ex-Im bill to the floor that would enact one-year reauthorization at $113 billion.
After last night’s contests, it’s time to update my running tallies of the popular vote in the GOP presidential primary and see what further conclusions can be drawn. I continue to break out the votes in three groups – the five conservative candidates (Santorum, Gingrich, Perry, Bachmann and Cain), the two moderate candidates (Romney and Hunstman) and the libertarian (Paul) – for reasons explained in my last post. Also, the numbers through Super Tuesday have changed slightly from the last post, as more complete tallies in some states have become available. This time I’m including the Wyoming results in the totals, but not the tiny vote totals from the territories (the Northern Mariana Islands and U.S. Virgin Islands; no popular vote totals are available from Guam or American Samoa).