Smoky Mountains Sunrise
Showing posts with label Republican Presidential Campaign of 2008. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Republican Presidential Campaign of 2008. Show all posts

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Did Romney's Religion Cost Him the Presidency?

By Gary Glenn

Saturday, the Mormon Times,
a website published by the Mormon church-owned Deseret News daily newspaper in Salt Lake City, published a commentary titled, "Did Romney's religion cost him the presidency?" citing assertions to that effect by Kirk Jowers, director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah.

Jowers must have been observing a different presidential election than most Republican primary voters did in 2008.

Mitt Romney didn't lose the Republican nomination because he's Mormon. Romney lost the nomination, among other things, because his record on family values issues such as abortion, the homosexual agenda, and pornography wasn't Mormon enough.

Anybody with an Internet connection could watch the YouTube videos in living color of Romney's own lips moving during his 2002 gubernatorial debate as he spoke the words: "I do not take the position of a pro-life candidate." DP_w9pquznG4

In his runs for public office before seeking the presidency, Romney endorsed abortion on demand, Roe v. Wade, Ted Kennedy's federal "gay rights" legislation, same-sex benefits for the homosexual partners of government workers (at taxpayers' expense), gays in the military, various gun control measures, opposed the state Marriage Protection Amendment proposed by traditional marriage groups, and disagreed with the Boy Scout policy banning homosexual Scouts and Scoutmasters. In his prior campaigns, he was endorsed by both the homosexual Log Cabin Republicans and the pro-abortion Republican Majority for Choice.

On another family values issue, the Deseret News editorially commented on Romney's service as a member of the board of directors of Marriott Hotels, which offers pay-per-view pornography on its in-room movie service:
"Pornography taints everything it touches. Mitt Romney should have understood that. So should the Marriott Corporation and other hotel owners who offer hard-core movies in hotel rooms. Romney caught a bit of flack last week because he spent nearly 10 years on the Marriott board and yet never tr ied to reverse the company's policy of providing pornography on demand... For a presidential candidate who has railed against pornography, this is not entirely insignificant. Even if the subject never came up at a board meeting, one can argue that at least part of the $25,000 plus stock he was paid annually for his board membership came from the money some hotel guests paid for access to the films.",1249,680197653,00.html
Conservative GOP primary voters were then asked to believe that in the few short years intervening, a man raised from childhood in a politically active and sophisticated family -- who had served in leadership positions in a pro-life, traditional values-based church -- had only at the tender age of 58 suddenly discovered his moral compass and "seen the light" to become a rock-ribbed pro-life, pro-traditional values conservative, just in time, conveniently, to run for president.

However, well after his alleged "Road to Des Moines" conversion to pro-family conservatism, Romney while running for president told Tim Russert in December 2007 that he supports state-level "gay rights" laws, called homosexual couples raising children "fine" and "the American way," publicly scolded Joint Chiefs Chairman Peter Pace for characterizing homosexual behavior as immoral, and to this day -- unless he's changed his views yet again since his campaign's last statement during the primaries -- disagrees with the Boy Scouts' nationwide ban on homosexual Scouts and Scoutmasters, a position certainly at odds with the Church's firm stand in support of that policy.

And as fellow candidate Fred Thompson accurately pointed out, referring to legislation Romney signed after his alleged pro-life conversion: "Gov. Romney’s own health care plan in Massachusetts offers taxpayer funded abortions for a mere $50 co-pay and requires by law that a representative from Planned Parenthood sit on the MassHealth advisory board. Tellingly, Gov. Romney made no such requirement for a representative from the pro-life movement."

Also telling in terms of character: in trying to justify his pro-abortion on demand track record, Romney didn't hesitate to throw Church officials and even his own mother under the bus. He told WHO radio in Des Moines: "There are Mormons in the leadership of my church who are pro-choice. ...Every Mormon should be pro-life? That's not what my church says." (Not caring to identify which leaders of a pro-life church he claimed are "pro-choice," Romney self-servingly cast an undeserved cloud of doubt on all of them.)

In his debate with Ted Kennedy, he said: "I believe that abortion should be safe and legal in this country. I have since the time when my Mom took that position when she ran in 1970 as a U.S. Senate candidate."

But as the Boston Globe reported: "(Former Michigan Republican Party chairwoman Elly) Peterson is dumbfounded to hear that Mitt Romney has described his mother as having been an abortion rights supporter during (her 1970 U.S. Senate) campaign. 'If it happened, I'd remember it,' she said in a telephone interview. 'It didn't, and I don't.' ...Detroit Free Press archives yielded no (Lenore Romney) campaign references to abortion...'The idea that Lenore would defy her church is hard to believe,' Peterson said."

And that's only one of the myriad of Romney's public statements that were, to put it kindly, simply not true: his demonstrably false claims about his gun ownership, his hunting prowess, his and/or his father's nonexistent marches with Martin Luther King, and his alleged endorsement by the NRA that never happened.

In the end, Romney's credibility was in such tatters that despite spending $100 million, he was able to win only three Republican primary contests, and only in his three "home" states: Massachusetts, Michigan, and Utah.

Kirk Jowers is wrong to blame Romney's church affiliation for his inability to credibly sell himself to socially conservative GOP primary voters. Blame instead Romney's record of blatantly disregarding and rejecting the Church's well-known values on life and marriage and pornography before running for president, and his challenges with telling the truth about that record while he was running.

Now, as of three months ago, Romney is once again serving on the Marriott board of directors, and once again -- as the Deseret News observed -- personally profiting from that corporation's annual sale of tens of millions of dollars of in-room pornography, never having uttered a word in protest. This despite the official Church website's instruction that "members of the Church should avoid pornography in any form and should oppose its production, distribution, and use."

Obviously, Romney's record at odds with the values of his own church, and the credibility challenges he faced in 2008 as a result, won't be going away between now and 2012.

Gary Glenn lives in Midland, Michigan.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Republican Platform Committee Approves Strong Pro-Life Plank

The Republican Platform Committee has approved a pro-life plank that the President of the National Right To Life Committee calls "the strongest and most explicit stand supporting of life ever expressed by a major political party."

Here's the Republican plank on life as approved by the Platform Committee today:

Faithful to the first guarantee of the Declaration of Independence, we assert the inherent dignity and sanctity of all human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution, and we endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children. We oppose using public revenues to promote or perform abortion and will not fund organizations which advocate it. We support the appointment of judges who respect traditional family values and the sanctity and dignity of innocent human life.

We have made progress. The Supreme Court has upheld prohibitions against the barbaric practice of partial-birth abortion. States are now permitted to extend health-care coverage to children before birth. And the Born Alive Infants Protection Act has become law; this law ensures that infants who are born alive during an abortion receive all treatment and care that is provided to all newborn infants and are not neglected and left to die. We must protect girls from exploitation and statutory rape through a parental notification requirement. We all have a moral obligation to assist, not to penalize, women struggling with the challenges of an unplanned pregnancy. At its core, abortion is a fundamental assault on the sanctity of innocent human life.
Women deserve better than abortion. Every effort should be made to work with women considering abortion to enable and empower them to choose life. We salute those who provide them alternatives, including pregnancy care centers, and we take pride in the tremendous increase in adoptions that has followed Republican legislative initiatives.

Respect for life requires efforts to include persons with disabilities in education, employment, the justice system, and civic participation. In keeping with that commitment, we oppose the non-consensual withholding of care or treatment from people with disabilities, as well as the elderly and infirm, just as we oppose euthanasia and assisted suicide, which endanger especially those on the margins of society….

Here's the Democrat Platform language:

The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to choose a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay, and we oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right.

Guess they forgot their commitment to ensuring that abortion is "rare."

The full draft of the Republican Platform is here.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Full Page Ad Will Tell McCain: "No Mitt"

Gov. Mitt Romney signs Massachusetts' Universal Health Care law on April 12, 2006, as Sen. Kennedy looks on approvingly. The law provides taxpayer-funded abortions.

PRESCOTT, Az. -- A coalition of over two dozen leaders of state and national social conservative organizations will run a full-page ad Saturday in the Prescott Daily Courier, telling presumptive Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain, R-Az., that they cannot support his candidacy if he selects former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney as his vice-presidential running mate. McCain is scheduled to appear at a campaign rally in Prescott Saturday on the steps of the courthouse where Sen. Barry Goldwater of Arizona launched his 1964 presidential bid.

The ad -- formally sponsored by Government is Not God PAC ( -- reprises social conservative activists' primary season criticism of Romney's record of passionately supporting abortion on demand and the so-called "gay rights" agenda both before and after Romney claims to have reversed his positions on such issues.

"For us the bottom line is this," the ad states. "The unvarnished facts of Mitt Romney's record as governor of Massachusetts make him utterly unacceptable as a Vice Presidential running mate. ...If Governor Romney is on your ticket, many social conservative voters will consider their values repudiated by the Republican Party."

(Full text is provided below.)

Most prominent among the ad's over two dozen signers is Paul Weyrich, president of the Free Congress Foundation, a founder of both the economically conservative Heritage Foundation and the socially conservative Moral Majority, and a national leader among conservative activists for nearly four decades.

Weyrich's is indisputably the most striking signature on the ad because of the dramatic change of heart it signals. Six months ago, Weyrich endorsed Romney's presidential candidacy.

We can’t support a McCain-Romney ticket. Here’s why.

An Open Letter to John McCain:


We are conservatives who believe strongly in the sanctity of human life and of marriage and we recognize that the issues at stake in this upcoming election are serious and profound.

Indeed, we believe the very future of America’s security, against threats both foreign and domestic, will be determined by whom America elects as President in November.

Because we have invested our lives in securing a prosperous America that honors life and liberty, we must state our grave concerns regarding your pending choice of a running mate.

Securing and uniting the GOP Base

To be successful in November you must unite all elements of the Reagan coalition. Your choice of a running mate must reassure the Party’s base that their voices and values will be respected if you are to ignite and excite the grassroots to work hard for your election in November.
For us the bottom line is this: The unvarnished facts of Mitt Romney's record as governor of Massachusetts make him utterly unacceptable as a Vice Presidential running mate.

A very large (and growing) number of social conservative voters who have become aware of that record are likely to abandon a GOP presidential ticket on which Romney's name appears.

Governor Romney got no traction during the primaries simply because his recent “conversion” to conservative and pro-life principles is not credible.

To be clear, we all welcome anyone who has come around to the cause of life and family.
However, Romney's actions as governor flatly contradict both the values widely associated with his faith as well as his pro-life and pro-traditional marriage campaign rhetoric.

As late as December (before carefully selected audiences) he stated anti-life and anti-family positions inconsistent with his previous statements. His actions as governor betray well-timed conversions as mere political opportunism, and offend those who demand “straight talk” from their leaders.

Mitt Romney created $50 taxpayer-funded abortions

The proof is clear. He claimed to be pro-life, but by establishing taxpayer-funded abortion on demand as a “healthcare benefit” Romney achieved what no pro-abortion Massachusetts Democrat ever had!

He unconstitutionally established a permanent government seat on the state-run health care board for an unelected representative of Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider. This was after his pro-life conversion. Is it any wonder we question his political integrity?

Mitt Romney illegally ordered same-sex “marriage”

Governor Romney also claimed loudly to support traditional marriage. But he went far beyond the notorious Goodridge court opinion that, in brazen defiance of a state constitution which blocks judges from even hearing challenges to marriage law and policy, urged the Legislature to legalize homosexual “marriage.”

The Legislature never did…but Romney didn’t wait. Fulfilling a backdoor campaign promise to the pro-homosexual Log Cabin Republicans, he illegally ordered justices of the peace to perform same-sex “marriages” in direct violation of the Massachusetts Constitution and the Legislature’s constitutionally binding statute. Is it any wonder we question his political character?


Mitt Romney is unfit to be a ‘heartbeat away’

This goes directly to the heart of our concerns over Romney’s fitness to be a ‘heartbeat away from the presidency.’

When a chief executive can violate multiple articles of the oldest functioning constitution in the world and disobey statutes he solemnly swore to defend and execute faithfully, then blame judges who never even asked him to intervene, he mocks the principle of limited government and the separation of powers. He robs Americans of their unalienable right to self-government, for which so many soldiers, sailors and airmen have died.

These are just two issues (there are more) that absolutely disqualify Mitt Romney as a viable Vice Presidential option. He would fatally harm your appeal to voters with deep constitutionalist and social conservative commitments.

The Base CAN help you win

If Governor Romney is on your ticket, many social conservative voters will consider their values repudiated by the Republican Party and either stay away from the polls this November or only vote down the ticket. For the sake of your election, the health of your party, and the future of America you must not allow the obvious electoral consequences of that to occur.

The Base WILL stand on principle

As citizens, activists, and leaders with our feet on the solid ground of real world Republican and Independent voters, it is our duty to alert you that the grassroots is nearing a point of breaking with Republican Party leadership on many issues, not the least of which is the relentless whitewashing of Mitt Romney’s social liberalism.

On this we cannot be silent.

Senator McCain, despite the proclamations of your surrogates we hope you will act to earn the support of the conservative grassroots in November, unite the Republican Party, and lead it to victory. However, Willard Mitt Romney is a deal breaker.

NOTE: Organizations are listed for identification purposes only

Matt Barber
Policy Director
Concerned Women for America

Dr. Ted Baehr
Author of Culture Wise Family

Michael W. Calsetta
Conservative Democratic Alliance

Brian Camenker

Janet Folger

Gary Glenn
American Family Association of Michigan

Thomas Glessner, J.D.
President, National Institute of Family and Life Advocates

James Hartline
Founder and Publisher
California Christian News

John Haskins
Parents’ Rights Coalition and

Linda Harvey
President, Mission America

Michael Heath
Executive Director
Christian Civic League of Maine

Gregg Jackson
Author/Radio Host

Judge Ned Kirby
Former Assistant Minority Leader
Massachusetts State Senate

Peter LaBarbera
Republicans for Family Values

Jan M. LaRue, Esq.
Jan LaRue Consulting

Dr. Scott Lively, Esq.
Defend the Family International

William J. Murray
Religious Freedom Coalition

Troy Newman
Operation Rescue

John O’Gorman
Board Member
Massachusetts Citizens for Life

Sandy Rios
President, Culture Campaign

John Russo
Marriage and Family Massachusetts

Stephen Strang
Chief Executive Officer
Strang Communications

Karen Testerman
Executive Director
Cornerstone Policy Research

Randy Thomasson
Campaign for Children and Families

Paul Weyrich
Free Congress Foundation

Philip Zodhiates
Response Unlimited, Inc.

To sign our petition and send a personal comment to Senator McCain, go to:

Government Is Not God-PAC
Nancy Murray, Treasurer PO Box 77237, Washington, DC 20013

Monday, March 31, 2008

Let's Hear It For The GOP!

By Pastor Chuck Baldwin

I think it is time that we all stood up and gave the Republican Party a big round of applause. I mean, they have done us all a huge favor. By an overwhelming majority, the GOP has prevented a potential plague from enveloping these United States of America, and I think it is time that we acknowledged it. Yes, the GOP stopped a potential catastrophe. Without the combined efforts of millions of Republicans, there is no telling what kind of disaster might have ensued. Let’s hear it for the GOP! Hip Hip Hooray!

For a few minutes there, I thought the GOP might have lost its mind, but I am glad to report that all is well with the Republican Party. The international bankers and oil companies, and the military-industrial complex, as well as the presidents of Mexico and Canada, can breathe easy. With John McCain as the presumptive Republican nominee, the globalist power brokers who have dominated the last three Presidential administrations can know that they are still in charge. There will be no changing of the guard this November.

It was scary there for a while. You see, there was this kook who was running for the Republican nomination that had the potential to upset the applecart real good. But thankfully, the fine people within the GOP rose to the occasion and beat back the attempts of his nutty supporters to vault him to the nomination.

After all, just think what would have taken place if this kook Ron Paul had won the Republican nomination for President. This nut case actually believes that the U.S. Constitution is the supreme law of the land. Imagine that. That means he would never take America to war except with a Declaration of War by Congress. Think how such a thing would prevent America’s meddling and interventionism worldwide. Think of the billions and even trillions of tax dollars that would not need to be spent overseas. Think of how much money Halliburton would lose. Think of how much money the Federal Reserve bankers would lose by not being able to loan money to the U.S. government. It is too ghastly to think about.

Furthermore, this Ron Paul nut might have actually insisted that the federal government declare unborn babies to be “persons” under the law. Think of it. This would mean that every unborn baby would have the immediate protection of law. And this would have happened without the necessity of appointing a single Supreme Court justice. Whew! The Republican Party dodged a bullet on that one. Now they can continue to talk about being “pro-life” for the next thirty years in order to fool Christian conservatives into voting for them without having to actually do anything about it.

This Ron Paul kook would also have put a stop to the incessant spying on the American people by their own federal government. Egad! This Paul character would have set America back two hundred years. Think of it. No more illegal wiretaps. No more reading private emails, letters, and telegrams. No more harassment by the BATFE of law-abiding firearms dealers for honest errors in paperwork. No more using the wars on “terror” and “drugs” to violate the Fourth Amendment. Think of the money that would be lost by the feds not confiscating the private property of the American people.

In addition, if this Ron Paul nut had actually become President, he might have succeeded in abolishing the Internal Revenue Service and overturning the Sixteenth Amendment. Holy Horrors! Can you imagine the tragedy that would have ensued? No more income taxes. No more tax forms to fill out. No more IRS agents arresting hard-working citizens for “tax evasion.” No more government tracking of our private financial transactions. Think of the US attorneys whose services would no longer be necessary. Imagine that. The federal government would actually be required to live within its means; it could no longer raise taxes, because there would be no more taxes to raise.

And if all of the above is not bad enough, this Ron Paul kook would actually demand that the federal government obey the Tenth Amendment. This, all by itself, would reduce the size and scope of the federal government by at least fifty percent. Imagine if the American people suddenly had the federal government out of their pocketbooks and off their backs? What would they do with all that newfound freedom? It is too scary to contemplate.

Do not worry, however. Thanks to the fine men and women of the Republican Party, John McCain will carry their standard into the November elections. Yes, my dear friends, David Rockefeller and his fellow travelers at the Council on Foreign Relations can rest easy. Should McCain win the general election, they will retain their influence in the White House. Indeed, we can all rest easier knowing that John McCain will be the Republican nominee for President.

After all, John McCain will see to it that our borders and ports remain open to illegal aliens. In fact, a McCain Presidency will ensure that illegal aliens become permanent U.S. citizens. Or better yet, that the U.S. and Mexico will be merged into a North American Community, thus eliminating the need for U.S. citizenship altogether. This will greatly help the Chamber of Commerce and Big Business. Think of the money they can save by hiring cheap Mexican labor. Think of the plants and factories that can be moved to Mexico. Think of the cheap Chinese goods that can be loaded onto Mexican trucks from Mexican ports and shipped into the United States on the NAFTA superhighways.

And did I mention the advantage a John McCain Presidency will provide to incumbents in future elections? Because John McCain does not believe in the U.S. Constitution, the First Amendment means nothing to him. This is good, because he can use the bully pulpit of the Presidency to promote his McCain/Feingold bill that would make it illegal for citizens to voice their concerns and opinions regarding the voting records of incumbents during a general election. That means those sinister organizations such as the National Rifle Association and Gun Owners of America will no longer be able to publicly promote their views regarding the anti-Second Amendment voting records of congressmen and senators.

That Ron Paul kook would never have tolerated such a law as McCain/Feingold. But thanks to the fine men and women of the Republican Party, we do not need to worry about these little inconveniences such as the First and Second Amendments (or any of the other articles within the Bill of Rights, for that matter), because they wisely selected John McCain to be their standard-bearer.

Furthermore, because the good men and women of the GOP decided to nominate John McCain, we can look forward to one hundred years of war in the Middle East. We can all anticipate the opportunity of sending our troops into harm’s way all over the world to promote the interests of international corporations, nation-building, and other U.N. machinations.

Had that nut Ron Paul been elected, he would have practiced a non-interventionist foreign policy. He would have sought peace with all nations. And, instead of preemptively invading foreign countries, he would have dealt constitutionally with terrorists, resulting in their capture or death, the protection of America, the absence of long-term war, and the respect of nations throughout the world. Furthermore, that nut Paul would have refused to use U.S. forces to do the bidding of the United Nations and other international entities.

However, we do not need to worry about old-fashioned, out-of-date ideas such as constitutional government, conservative principles, or common sense, because the fine men and women of the Republican Party wisely chose John McCain as their presumptive Presidential nominee. Yes, indeed. Let’s hear it for the GOP!

Chuck Baldwin is Founder-Pastor of Crossroads Baptist Church in Pensacola, Florida. In 1985 the church was recognized by President Ronald Reagan for its unusual growth and influence.

Dr. Baldwin is the host of a lively, hard-hitting syndicated radio talk show on the Genesis Communications Network called, “Chuck Baldwin Live” This is a daily, one hour long call-in show in which Dr. Baldwin addresses current event topics from a conservative Christian point of view. Pastor Baldwin writes weekly articles on the internet [1] and newspapers.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Divided We Stand

Unable to unite behind a GOP candidate, religious right
leaders face a wilderness road to the White House

From WORLD Magazine
By Warren Cole Smith

Last month at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in New Orleans, several dozen leaders of the "Christian right" met to strategize next steps—but the meeting inevitably included discussion of missteps in the GOP presidential campaign. Michael Farris of the Home School Legal Defense Association, an early supporter of Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, chided the group for cold-shouldering his candidate until it was too late. Others, including Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, disagreed. The meeting quickly threatened to dissolve into accusations, rebuttals, and recriminations.

Then, venerable Paul Weyrich — a founder of the Heritage Foundation, the Moral Majority, and the Council for National Policy (CNP) — raised his hand to speak. Weyrich is a man whose mortality is plain to see. A freak accident several years ago left him with a spinal injury, which ultimately led to both his legs being amputated in 2005. He now gets around in a motorized wheelchair. He is visibly paler and grayer than he was just a few years ago, a fact not lost on many of his friends in the room, some of whom had fought in the political trenches with him since the 1960s.

The room — which had been taken over by argument and side-conversations — became suddenly quiet. Weyrich, a Romney supporter and one of those Farris had chastised for not supporting Huckabee, steered his wheelchair to the front of the room and slowly turned to face his compatriots. In a voice barely above a whisper, he said, "Friends, before all of you and before almighty God, I want to say I was wrong."

In a quiet, brief, but passionate speech, Weyrich essentially confessed that he and the other leaders should have backed Huckabee, a candidate who shared their values more fully than any other candidate in a generation. He agreed with Farris that many conservative leaders had blown it. By chasing other candidates with greater visibility, they failed to see what many of their supporters in the trenches saw clearly: Huckabee was their guy.

Why were the leaders of Christian conservatives divided and ultimately ineffective in the 2008 campaign?

The story may have begun a year ago when Newt Gingrich appeared on Focus on the Family's national radio broadcast on March 16, 2007. During the broadcast, Gingrich confessed past sins and Focus founder and host James Dobson declared, "I cannot under any circumstances support John McCain." Many thought that Gingrich would be Dobson's candidate, but those who had been disappointed by Gingrich's ineffectiveness as speaker of the House, or by his extramarital dalliance, withheld their backing.

That same day Sen. John McCain pulled in a disappointing $150,000 at a luncheon fundraiser across the country at the Westin Hotel in Charlotte. He was polling in single digits, behind Gov. Mitt Romney and Rudy Giuliani, even behind former Sen. Fred Thompson, who had not declared his candidacy. At an after-lunch press conference, McCain took a reporter's question about Gingrich's performance on the Focus broadcast with an icy stare: "First of all, let me say that I'm a believer in redemption."

For McCain, political redemption was a year away. Gingrich failed to rally support from those who knew him best, and some conservative leaders turned instead to Romney, who had long courted them. In 2006, Christian public-relations guru and Romney backer Mark DeMoss had his candidate meet with about 15 conservative activists. In a gesture that — like much of Romney's campaign — was both opulent and desperate, Romney sent everyone in attendance an expensive office chair, along with a note that read, "You'll always have a seat at our table."

Despite the largesse, Romney gained only a footstool at the Christian conservative table, whose leadership increasingly was troubled over his flip-flops on gay civil unions and abortion. On Sept. 29, 2007, he spoke at a CNP meeting in Salt Lake City. The next day he met with Dobson, Perkins, and about 40 other leaders. Conservative talk show host Rick Scarborough told WORLD the verdict: Romney as governor of Massachusetts "just a few short years ago . . . fought against everything we're fighting for." He would not win the group's backing.

So, with Gingrich not in the running, and Romney a "no," Thompson's leisurely campaign and Ron Paul's iconoclastic one did not impress many Republicans. Giuliani's pro-abortion stance alienated most. The candidate who continued to draw support from grassroots folks: Huckabee.

"The other candidates come to you," Huckabee told 2,000 Christian conservatives at the Washington, D.C., Value Voters Summit in October 2007. "I come from you."

That line generated one of more than a dozen standing ovations during Huckabee's 20-minute address, and he gained most of their votes in a straw poll of those present.

But Huckabee could not gain traction among the religious right leaders who could have generated the financial backing he needed to run a national campaign. In October, as well, he met with a group of conservative Christian leaders — most drawn from the ranks of the CNP gatherings — who say they were "vetting" the candidates. Most didn't like Huckabee's positions on immigration and tax reform. Others thought him insufficiently ardent in criticizing Islamic extremism and abortion. Members of the group believed that Huckabee was "their guy" from a religious perspective but said he was not quite ready for "prime time."

But no other candidates thrilled the leaders, either, so Huckabee was the one candidate they invited back for what one leader called a "do-over." He did much better the second time, yet the group remained too divided about his winning potential to agree to endorse him. When he won a stunning victory in Iowa, he didn't have the resources to take advantage of that upset in the primaries that immediately followed. McCain beat Romney in New Hampshire, and the Arizona senator soon became the unexpected front-runner.

On Jan. 22, just days after the South Carolina primary, Fred Thompson dropped out of the race. The next day, American Values president Gary Bauer wrote the 100,000 supporters on his email list: "Fred Thompson — sadly, in my view — dropped out of the Republican presidential primary race yesterday. He was the one candidate who understood Reagan conservatism and who appealed to all three segments of the Reagan coalition — social conservatives, economic conservatives and defense conservatives."

Thompson's departure should have helped Huckabee, but Huckabee himself had finished a disappointing second in South Carolina — to McCain. When Giuliani failed to win Florida on Jan. 29, a state in which he had spent much of his time and money, he withdrew — and McCain got most of Giuliani's supporters.

On Super Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2008, McCain won nine states to Romney's seven and Huckabee's five. McCain took 601 of the delegates to Romney's 201 and Huckabee's 152. When it was too late for Huckabee, Dobson endorsed him, but by then McCain had the endorsement of inevitability. On March 4, nearly a year after Dobson had said he would not vote for McCain, McCain won the Texas primary and enough delegates to clinch the GOP nomination.

Three days later the CNP met again, this time in New Orleans. McCain, trying to stroke conservatives, took the stage with a hand-held microphone. He received applause when he praised Huckabee, when he said, "We've let spending get out of control," when he said, "Radical Islamic extremism is evil. It's evil," and when he said, "As for the rights of the unborn: The noblest words written are the words 'inalienable rights.' That means the right to life."

When asked about his own faith in God, though, McCain launched into the story he has told often about a prison guard in North Vietnam who showed him compassion and once, in the prison yard, drew the sign of the cross in the dirt at McCain's feet, then quickly brushed it away. The story received polite applause. Later Family Research Council head Tony Perkins told WORLD, "He had a golden opportunity to talk about his faith. Instead, he talked about the faith of his guard. It was a great story, but not what we were looking for." Bill Owens, founder and president of the Coalition of African-American Pastors, was more direct: "It was a disaster. It just proves he has no clue what we're about."

But Phil Burress, who by championing a marriage amendment in Ohio in 2004 became instrumental in winning Ohio — and reelection — for George W. Bush, was among the last to speak before the New Orleans meeting broke up. Burress had been a part of the "vetting process" in Washington where the leaders reviewed and dismissed the GOP candidates early on.

With the election now just over six months away, he told the New Orleans gathering, "McCain wasn't my first choice, and I'm not sure about him now, but we've got a zero chance of getting a conservative Supreme Court justice out of either Clinton or Obama. I don't know whether we've got a 25 percent chance, or a 50 percent chance, or a 100 percent chance with McCain — but it's better than zero, and I'm going to do everything in my power to help get him elected. He's our best shot."

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

No Surprise Here: Romney Campaign Co-Chair Endorses...OBAMA

By Gary Glenn

The man who would have advised the White House on future U.S. Supreme Court appointments, had Romney been elected president...

Pepperdine Law Professor Doug Kmiec served as co-chairman of the Romney for President campaign's "Advisory Committee on the Constitution and the Courts."

Now that his first choice philosophically is out of the race, the top advisor on future judicial appointments to the allegedly "conservative" Republican presidential candidate has now endorsed -- naturally, who else? -- the pro-abortion on demand, pro-homosexual agenda, socially liberal Democrat from Illinois, Senator Barack Obama.

Which explains...

...why Kmiec was also comfortable supporting Romney, given Romney's pro-abortion on demand, pro-homosexual agenda, socially liberal political record in Massachusetts. fortunate social conservatives were -- this time -- that Romney's political fortunes did not allow him to elevate someone so lacking in philosophically reliable judgment to a position of influence over future Supreme Court selections.

...why, yet again, it is Romney's philosophical commitment and judgment that are not to be trusted by social conservatives. As if further evidence was needed on this issue beyond Romney's appointment to the Massachusetts bench of two homosexual activists, one a Lesbian and Gay Bar Association board member who'd been an outspoken proponent of homosexual "marriage."

Thursday, March 20, 2008

McCain Must Resist Increasingly Surreal Hubris of GOP Elites

By Gregg Jackson

This week Fred Barnes wrote an article in which he suggests that McCain's best VP choice is Mitt Romney.


Mr. Barnes is correct that McCain's VP selection is vital because of McCain's age (71) and because McCain needs to select an authentic conservative with widespread appeal to the GOP base-Evangelical and Catholic Christians, millions of whom have started to gag on the regularly scheduled forced doses of the GOP's shut-up-and-do-as-you're-told concoctions.

Mr. Barnes believes Mitt Romney is exactly the man to get them to swallow yet another bitter dose.

Such a claim could only issue forth from the increasingly bizarre, even surreal, consensus in which the "conservative" elites -- pundits, consultants, lawyers and self-styled "pro-family" power brokers -- swim.

First, Mr. Barnes writes that McCain's VP should be acceptable to conservatives-especially social conservatives. Perhaps Mr. Barnes does not quite understand how right he is on this. It has long been apparent that among the conservative elites "pro-life" is merely a uniform that one puts on like a free agent ballplayer joining a team in search of a championship.

"You're now ‘pro-life,’ Mr. Romney? Why should we believe that?"

"Because I said so, and that ought to be proof enough. And only a fool would turn away a convert to the pro-life cause."

"Maybe so, Slick, and maybe not. But the question remains, why should we believe that?"

"Well, after my conversion to the pro-life side, with every bill that came across my desk I came down on the side of life."

"Hmmm. Well, does that include your massive government health care plan with which you delighted Ted Kennedy by establishing taxpayer-funded abortion on demand at fifty dollars a pop?"

"I thought Jay Sekulow, James Bopp, Gary Bauer, Tony Perkins, Tom Minnery, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Laura Ingraham and the kids running the National Review had taken care of all that for me."

Mr. Barnes, like most of the chattering "conservative elites," has missed the glaring lesson of a Republican presidential primary in which millions of social conservative and constitutionalist voters just said no to all the RINOs the party nomenklatura stubbornly forced on them, preferring to pick from among the diverse options of Mike Huckabee, Ron Paul, Tom Tancredo, and Duncan Hunter. Does Barnes not grasp how much intellectual credibility and moral gravitas the "conservative" mandarins have squandered -- outside the beltway and away from the studio lights of Fox News?

McCain must select a running mate who is a credible opponent of abortion and who sees where we are being taken with the endless progression of political and constitutional concessions being made to appease the militant strategists of the obscenely overfunded global sodomy revolution. Behind the relentless waves of propaganda from the "conservative" political elites, the actual record of Willard Mitt Romney's record is that of a man who is best described as the GOP's Barak Obama.

Not only does the new, improved "pro-life" Willard Mitt Romney oppose a Federal Human Life Amendment, but as I've noted in numerous exposes here at , he handed the abortion industry what no Democrat has by establishing abortion on demand with a $50 co-pay (after his stage-managed pro-life "awakening") as a "healthcare benefit". For those who have done the homework and know the Romney that Barnes dutifully (or naively?) whitewashes, it is no shock that his socialist healthcare plan was endorsed not only by Ted Kennedy but also by Hillary Clinton and Planned Parenthood.

The deeper one looks into the Romney closet the more disturbing the skeletons one finds. Notwithstanding an Orwellian cover-up by "conservative" mercenaries bribed and otherwise recruited to Romney's stable, the former governor also imposed homosexual "marriage" as governor in brazen violation of multiple articles of the Massachusetts Constitution, the exclusive authority of the Legislature and the marriage statutes. Lacking a constitutionally required enabling statute, he illegally ordered justices of the peace to perform homosexual "marriage" ceremonies or resign. In violating his oath to faithfully execute the statues and uphold the state constitution, he fulfilled a secret 2002 campaign promise to the homosexual Log Cabin Republicans.

Moreover, then Governor Romney unconstitutionally forced Catholic Charities, the nation's oldest adoption and foster care agency, to place children with homosexual couples or go out of business (which they eventually were forced to do). As even liberal Democrat former governor Mike Dukakis pointed out, the state law Romney claimed forced him to do this does not even exist! He similarly forced Catholic Hospitals to issue abortafacients, pretending again to be merely executing the law. Again Dukakis caught him lying red-handed.

Romney supports homosexual scout masters and sexual orientation non-discrimination laws that would penalize religious organizations and private businesses for not hiring transsexuals and cross dressers. The list of Obama-esque social policy decisions goes on and on, and is matched by aggressive lying about the law as governor in order to turn the social, moral and constitutional ratchet far to the left, while ruthlessly using Mormonism as a cloak to pass himself off as a reluctant conservative caught in one difficult position after another. In fact he became a master of creating elaborate smokescreens to cause conservatives to believe that he was fighting the radical policies he was pushing.

Does Mr. Barnes really believe that a Barak Obama in Republican clothing is acceptable to social conservatives? If so he needs to formulate a plan to break himself out of the surreal intellectual ghetto that three decades of hubris and brutally enforced consensus have created among the "conservative" elites. The grassroots increasingly see where we're headed and they’re getting off the train.

Barnes states that Romney would "shore up McCain's weakness on economic issues." He is correct that many economic conservatives who, despite McCain's recent support for making the Bush Tax Cuts permanent, reducing the corporate tax rate, and government spending, are wary of McCain's past opposition to the Bush Tax Cuts and support for carbon emissions "cap-and-trade" tax regimes.

But again, Barnes writes from the ghetto. Romney's actual record as governor shouldn’t instill confidence among fiscal conservatives. Romney did not support the Bush Tax Cuts (earning him praise from Massachusetts' neo-Marxist congressman Barney Frank). As governor, Romney increased taxes by $800 million (he cleverly called them "fees") which have truly harmed the Massachusetts economy. Romney's healthcare plan, in the words of the Wall St. Journal, is in "intensive care "with inflated costs that are estimated to double -- a plan he has said would serve as a model for a national plan.

Moreover, the absurd claim that a businessman has experience and expertise that directly applies to reforming by far the largest national economy on earth is not something that grownups ought to take even half-seriously. Romney has built vast personal wealth by cutting workforces, off-shoring jobs and aggressively marketing struggling firms as revitalized in order to sell them off to investors. This is known as short-term micro-economics. It has little if any relevance to macro-economics or long-term health of an economy or an industry -- which is exactly why Romney had to promise Michigan voters to rob taxpayers across America to prop up their dying manufacturing base, a promise that could just as easily have come from Barak Obama. As an "economic conservative" -- as much as a "social conservative"-- Slick Willard Romney is a snake oil salesman.

There is no doubt that McCain must choose an authentic fiscal conservative with a consistent track record of cutting taxes and spending, and implementing free market consumer-driven initiatives. Romney has no such record as governor. What McCain doesn't need is to select is a tax hiker whose signature economic "achievement" was an Orwellian pro-abortion healthcare plan endorsed by the Clinton-Kennedy- Planned Parenthood triumvirate.

Finally, Mr. Barnes argues that Romney has the support of many in the "Bush wing of the Republican Party" including Karl Rove and the Bushes themselves.

Like his friends over at the National Review, Fox News and other such lofty locations in the conservative ghetto, Mr. Barnes seems to have learned nothing at all from the last year. I don't know if he's noticed yet, but there seems to be a significant breakdown in communications between the GOP establishment and grass roots conservatives. Romney spent a king's ransom (100 million dollars, plus bribes and hush money for "conservative" and "pro-family" mercenaries) attempting to convince voters he was the second coming of Ronald Reagan. But many conservative voters rejected the screaming instructions from the self-appointed ghetto leadership, having figured out that Willard Mitt Romney is nothing more than Barak Obama in a Reagan costume. Candidates (McCain and Huckabee) adamantly opposed by the GOP elites, though vastly outspent, won the gold and silver respectively.

Voters have repudiated the "conservative" elites. Romney's support among the Bush nomenklatura is reason enough, all by itself, to reject him.

Gregg Jackson is a radio talk show host on WRKO in Boston and author of "Conservative Comebacks to Liberal Lies: Issue By Issue Responses to the Most Common Claims of the Left from A to Z."

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

McCain: How To Lose The White House

From WorldNetDaily
By Janet Folger

It doesn't really matter how "honored" Mitt Romney would be to be chosen as Sen. John McCain's running mate, because if Sen. McCain wants to be president, he won't pick Romney. In fact, the very best way to lose the White House is to pick Mitt Romney for vice president. Here are just a few reasons why.
  1. Mitt Romney did two "post conversion" things the Clintons and Obamas only dream about:

    a. He ORDERED homosexual marriage, and

    b. He made abortion a tax-funded "health care benefit" in his state mandated socialized medicine plan.

  2. On life and marriage, there is no one worse than Mitt Romney.

  3. He's billed as "Mr. Money," but he had to loan himself millions because he couldn't raise enough to run. Romney outspent Mike Huckabee by about 20 to one. If you want to spend 20 times more than you would if you picked Gov. Huckabee, Romney's your guy. According to the Los Angeles Times, he spent $98 million dollars ($42.3 million of his own money) and only won three primaries: Utah, Massachusetts and Michigan – his three "home" states.

    In a cost/delegate analysis, there is no one worse than Mitt Romney.

  4. According to Rasmussen, Romney has "the least core support" and "the most core opposition of all the leading candidates, Republican or Democrat." Nearly half of Americans, 47 percent, find Romney so politically repugnant that they say they will vote against him "no matter who else is on the ballot." Gallup Guru put it this way: "Romney is the 'only candidate with a more negative than positive ratio.'"

    When it comes to popular support, there is no one worse than Mitt Romney.

  5. The one who attacked John McCain in the campaign the most was none other than Mitt Romney. If you want a guy that will attack you in an effort to get ahead, Romney's your pick. McCain's response to that attack is seen on video, speaking of "One of a number of [Romney's] attacks." McCain himself points out: "As we've gone up in the polls the attacks have grown more … hysterical." By the way, it was Huckabee during the race who defended McCain, calling him a "true … American hero" and calling the Romney attack "desperate and dishonest."

    When it comes to a record of personal attack against Sen. McCain, there is no one worse than Mitt Romney.

    If you want to lose, there is a sure fire way to do that: Pick Mitt Romney or someone else who can't be trusted to defend the right to life and the institution of marriage. Someone who can't be trusted, period. As the Myths of Mitt Romney point out, Romney has trouble with the truth. Here are a few that have been documented:

    1. Romney said his father marched with Martin Luther King Jr. He didn't.
    2. Romney said he marched with Martin Luther King Jr. He didn't.
    3. Romney said: "I have a gun of my own." He doesn't.
    4. Romney said he was endorsed by the National Rifle Association. He wasn't.
    5. Romney said he's been a hunter "all my life." Well, he hunted exactly "Twice." Once every forty years. In fact, according to public officials in four states where Romney lived, he never took out a license.

      Not only did he flip on every major social issue just before running for president, he wasn't even honest about it: Romney said both: "I wasn't pro-choice." and "I was pro-choice."
    6. According to Rasmussen, the candidate of either party with the least hard-core opposition among American voters besides John McCain (at 33 percent) is …Gov. Mike Huckabee (at 34 percent). Rasmussen reports the only candidate (of either party) with as much hard-core opposition from American voters as Romney is Hillary Clinton (tied at 47 percent).

      The numbers don't lie. Sen. McCain, there is one sure-fire way to lose the White House: Pick Mitt Romney.

      I'm not telling you whom to pick, but if you want the vice presidential candidate who in addition to winning the "must win" states in the primary, who has the best cost/vote ratio, who has proven he can energize the base of the party, who defended (not attacked) you even before you won the nomination, who is honest, consistent and according to Rasmussen, has the least opposition among American voters, Mike Huckabee is your guy.

      Ask him, I'm sure he would be honored to be your vice president, and I'm sure millions more would be honored to vote for you if you do.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

From the Right, He Looks Too Blue

From The Washington Post
By L. Brent Bozell

Think real conservatives will vote for John McCain? Don't count on it.

The conservative talk-show community? Don't mind them -- they're irrelevant.

This message from John McCain surrogates and other members of the political class is filling the airwaves and op-ed pages. In the Wall Street Journal, Weekly Standard Executive Editor Fred Barnes recently wrote that McCain needn't worry that conservatives are uncomfortable with his candidacy, because "while they love to grumble and grouse, conservatives tend to be loyal Republicans who wind up voting for their party's candidate."

In the same pages, novelist Mark Helprin, a former adviser to Robert J. Dole's presidential campaign, savaged conservatives such as Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Mark Levin for daring to speak out against McCain. "Rather than playing recklessly with electoral politics by sabotaging their own party," he wrote, "each of these compulsive talkers might be a tad less self-righteous, look to the long run, discipline himself, suck it up, and be a man."

I know the conservative movement. I've been in the trenches fighting for an alphabet soup of conservative causes for 30 years. I've raised hundreds of millions of dollars for it. And I earnestly hope that McCain isn't listening to the advice he's getting from these folks. Their thinking betrays a fundamental misreading of the conservative pulse in America today.

Conservative leaders, particularly those in talk radio, cannot and will not be silent. They will not betray their principles and their audiences. Tens of millions of activists turn to them for guidance. These activists could be, and need to be, McCain's ground troops, but unless and until conservatives believe him -- and believe in him -- they will not work for his election. McCain may have the Beltway crowd in his corner, but grass-roots conservatives aren't sold.

Yet through his surrogates, McCain is attacking these leaders. This is beyond folly. It is political suicide.

For 20 years, the moderate establishment of the Republican Party has told conservatives to sit down, shut up and do as we're told. History shows that sometimes we bite the bullet. But not always. I absolutely guarantee that this year we cannot be taken for granted. This is a movement fed up with betrayals, and they've come one after the other.

Think back to 1988. Plenty of qualified conservatives -- Pete du Pont, Rep. Jack Kemp and Sen. Paul Laxalt, Pat Robertson (for evangelicals, anyway) -- were prepared to succeed President Ronald Reagan, but the GOP establishment, along with the professional political class, rallied around Vice President George H.W. Bush, an unthinkable proposition for conservatives just eight years earlier. After a listless campaign start, Bush finally energized the conservative base with his "No new taxes!" pledge at the Republican National Convention in New Orleans. We carried him to victory that November.

Within two years, he'd broken his promise and delivered one of the largest tax increases in history. His 1991 nomination of Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court, which pleased conservatives, had been preemptively neutralized by his selection of the liberal David H. Souter in 1990. After brilliantly executing the 1991 Persian Gulf War, he squandered a 91 percent approval rating. He did nothing to advance the conservative cause. He did not cut taxes. He did not rein in federal spending and regulation. He did nothing for social and cultural issues.

By 1992, we who had dined at the table of Ronald Reagan had been banished to the GOP kitchen. As the National Review editorialized at the time, establishment Republicans "took conservative support for granted, reasoning from the dogma of the two-party system that disaffected conservatives had 'nowhere else to go.' " They were wrong. Some of us turned to Pat Buchanan, who disrupted the primary season. Others turned to independent candidate H. Ross Perot, who led the field until he imploded. Still others simply stayed home, and that November, Bush was soundly defeated by Bill Clinton.

Two years later, the "Contract With America" reversed the GOP's fortunes. With a reignited conservative base, Republicans captured both houses of Congress. But in the face of a liberal counterattack led by the national news media -- Time magazine's cover on Dec. 19, 1994, portrayed a snarling Newt Gingrich as Uncle Scrooge, and the cover of Newsweek's year-end double issue depicted a Dr. Seuss-esque cartoon of the House speaker smiling devilishly beside the headline "How the Gingrich Stole Christmas" -- Republican resistance crumbled. The Contract was abandoned, and overnight the Gingrich revolution was finished. We watched Republican "leaders" flee into the tall grass, whence they've never emerged.

In 1996, a new crop of conservative leaders presented themselves as presidential candidates, but again the party establishment would have none of Buchanan, Steve Forbes, Phil Gramm or Dan Quayle. Instead, they pooled their resources behind Dole, who offered nothing to energize the conservative base while the professional class confidently clucked that conservatives had "nowhere else to go." Again we stayed home. There was no enthusiasm for volunteer action. Again the moderate candidate was routed.

How disgruntled was the conservative base? Two years later, the GOP lost five seats in the House, the first time since 1822 that a party not in control of the White House had failed to gain seats in the midterm election of a president's second term.

But after eight years of Clinton's corruption, and facing the prospect of at least four more years with Al Gore at the helm, conservatives threw our support behind George W. Bush in 2000. He initially delivered by leading the charge in cutting taxes, and his political stature further increased when the nation rallied behind its commander in chief after Sept. 11, 2001. He won reelection in 2004 because conservatives stayed with him, delivering millions of volunteers committed to the defeat of Sen. John F. Kerry.

But any hopes that Bush would deliver on a conservative agenda in his second term evaporated almost immediately. We watched with growing fury as he and the GOP leadership promoted one liberal initiative after another. Finally, we openly rebelled, turning on the GOP over the Supreme Court nomination of Harriet Miers, amnesty for illegal immigrants and the Republicans' shameless abandonment of fiscal discipline. What was once a powerful alliance between the Republican Party and grass-roots conservatives had become a political bridge to nowhere. With the GOP facing the loss of Congress in 2006, we shrugged in indifference. The movement that had "nowhere else to go" had gone.

And it has not returned.

How important are conservatives to the GOP? This year's Republican primary debate was dominated by one question: Which candidate was most qualified to carry the flag of Ronald Reagan?

Ironically, the man who survived this intramural scrum is the one who arguably least qualifies as a Reagan conservative. He claims to be a champion of freedom but gave us McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform -- which, by limiting free speech during elections, is perhaps the greatest infringement ever on the First Amendment. He claims to be a champion of U.S. sovereignty but offered us the McCain-Kennedy immigration reform bill that would give millions of illegal immigrants the chance to become citizens; that's amnesty, no matter how much he denies it. He claims to be a champion of the unborn but has waffled in the past, supporting federal funding of embryonic stem-cell research. This year, he won the endorsement of Republicans for Choice. He claims to be a fiscal conservative who will make the Bush tax cuts permanent, but he also voted against them. These are serious issues.

What should McCain do? Saying he's not Hillary Rodham Clinton or Barack Obama will not be enough -- not this time. Repudiating positions that are anathema to conservatism won't be enough, either. The liberal base of the Democratic Party is on fire; he must bring an equal passion to the table with his conservative base. It is time for McCain to be Reagan.

This is what conservatives call on him to do:

McCain must present a strategy to defeat the threat of radical Islam. He needs to call on the United States to rebuild its military infrastructure, so devastated by the Clinton administration. He should secure our borders by a date certain. In every great struggle, the citizenry -- everyone, not just the country's military -- has been challenged to participate. McCain could make this the clarion call for volunteerism, for national service.

If McCain believes in freedom, he should promise to take the yoke off the American taxpayer. He has embraced making the Bush tax cuts permanent. Good. Now he should pledge to end the estate tax and lower the corporate tax rate to 25 percent. In fact, he should call for an overhaul of the tax system. The flat tax or the fair tax -- either is preferable to the monstrosity that is the Internal Revenue Service.

The federal government is out of control. Conservatives don't want to hear talk about "reining in the growth of government." Those are empty words. McCain needs to call for the elimination of entire sectors of the federal leviathan. He should pledge to turn back to the states that which is their responsibility and which comes under their authority. We want to see how he will deregulate the private sector and how he will once again unleash the economic might of the United States. He should champion private retirement accounts and health savings accounts.

McCain should place the left on notice -- now -- that if elected, he will not tolerate congressional obstructionism of his nominations to the federal judiciary.

Our culture is decaying from within, and most Republicans have been shamefully AWOL on this issue. McCain could begin a national conversation about parents, not the state, taking responsibility for their children and their communities. He should call on the entertainment industry to stop polluting America's youth with its videos and its music and on the Internet. We wait to hear him call for the United States to honor the sanctity of life, the sanctity of marriage and family, and to return God to the public square.

If McCain offers this kind of vision, Washington elitists will scoff. But he should remember that they also scoffed and dismissed Ronald Reagan, all the way to his election. And his reelection.