Saturday, March 27, 2010

Teabaggers Energizing the Republican Grassroots-- To Wreck The GOP


This cycle there may be many Republican Dede Scozzafavas, including stalwart conservatives who have gotten on the wrong side of a pack of drooling, angry, and ignorant teabaggers out for blood-- anybody's blood. Yesterday the NY Times focused in on the travails of arch-conservative Utah Senator Robert Bennett. Hailing from the Mormon Empire, where there is no premium put on education or intelligence, other than a negative premium; their bizarre version of "God" requires a leap of faith so strenuous that it literally takes someone with half a brain.

ProgressivePunch ranks all senators based on close contested votes that call for party unity. High scores-- like Al Franken's 100%, Sherrod Brown's 97.30% or Bernie Sanders' 95.27%-- show a powerful and unwavering commitment to progressive legislation. Low scores-- like Jim DeMint's 2.15, Richard Burr's 2.31 and Johnny Isakson's 1.32-- are indicative of a completely reactionary, if not neo-fascist, mindset. Robert Bennett's lifetime score is 2.86 and since Obama became president he is one of 17 disgraceful senators with ZERO scores. ZERO. He also scores an A from the National Rifle Association and a 98% from the far, far right U.S. Chamber of Commerce. But that isn't enough for Utah teabaggers. As the Times article says, "He pledged to serve only two terms, but he is now seeking his fourth. He sits on the Appropriations Committee, which distributes earmarks, and has done little to slow the growth in federal spending. And not only did he vote for the bank bailout, known as the Troubled Assets Relief Program, he also signed onto a bipartisan health care bill seen as an alternative to the main Democratic plan." The piece is titled "Political tide could wash away Utah senator."
The dissatisfaction with Washington sweeping through politics is not only threatening the Democratic majority in Congress, it is also roiling Republican primaries. The Tea Party movement and advocacy groups on the right are demanding that candidates hew strictly to their ideological standards, and are moving aggressively to cast out those they deem to have strayed, even if only by participating in the compromises of legislating.

There is no bigger quarry in the eyes of many conservative activists than Mr. Bennett, who has drawn seven challengers and will not know for six weeks whether he will even qualify for the ballot. His fate is being watched not only by grass-roots conservatives testing their ability to shape the party, but also by many elected Republicans in Washington who are wondering, If Bob Bennett is not conservative enough, who is?

“If the anti-incumbent tide is as strong as some people think it is, I will be swept out, despite all my efforts,” Mr. Bennett said in an interview. “If the anti-incumbent tide is a lot of conversation, but has no center of gravity as a true political movement, then I’ll be just fine. There’s no way to know.”

For all the anger directed at President Obama and his party from the right, especially after the passage of health care legislation, the first opportunities for Tea Party members and the groups seeking to channel their antigovernment energy into electoral politics are in Republican primaries. Mr. Bennett is especially exposed to the grass-roots anger. The quirky nominating system in Utah means that 3,500 delegates must give Mr. Bennett their blessing before he can face the primary electorate in June... The rise of the Tea Party movement, along with an investment in the race by the Club for Growth, the antitax Washington-based group that seeks to influence Republican primaries, has turned the race into what the soft-spoken senator calls “the nastiest one I have experienced.”

Bennett is counting on Mitt Romney, who Mormons want to see capture the White House, to save his ass. He's trying to persuade Republicans that Bennett's vote for the TARP bailout was the right move. Romney calls the yes vote "the correct and courageous vote.” Right-wing icons like Jim DeMint (R-SC), Sam Brownback (R-KS), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Mike Enzi (R-WY), Jeff Sessions (KKK-AL), Jim Bunning (R-KY), David Diapers Vitter (R-LA) and Mike Crapo (R-ID) see it differently than Romney; they feel their vote against the bailout that put billions into the pockets of failed and corrupt banksters was neither correct nor courageous and many of them see Romney as the worst of what the GOP has to offer. In Utah, though, he's the Mormon golden calf. Enough to save Bennett? There are 3,500 delegates to the state convention on May 8. If he doesn't win at least 40% of their votes, he won't even get onto the primary ballot.
[T]here was a hint of trouble for Mr. Bennett in Precinct 2064... The senator’s sister, Frances Jeppson, was running as a delegate. When she announced that she intended to support her brother, voters did not select her.

And Senate races in Florida, New Hampshire, Utah, Arizona, California and Colorado aren't the only places where teabaggers are causing the Republican Establishment heartburn and agita. Their potential to cause the Republicans real problems is even greater in the House, where they are running dozens of candidates, some in primaries and some as third party candidates. In most cases where a Democrat, a Republican and a teabagger are all facing off, the advantage goes to the Democrat. That could well help North Carolina voters dislodge vicious sociopath Virginia Foxx as well as wreck Charlie Dent's chance to be re-elected in Pennsylvania's Lehigh Valley and re-elect freshman Virginia Democrat Tom Perriello.

Teabbagers are especially incensed at Riverside County's Mary Bono Mack who has tried to please her district's voters by rare votes in favor of environmental sanity on occasion. Now she's facing off against moderate Democrat, Steve Pougnet, mayor of Palm Springs, on the one hand and a crazed Hemet teabagger Clay Thibodeau on the other. And if that wasn't bad enough another teabagging imbecile, Hate Talk Radio host Bill Lussenheide is running as a third party candidate and promises to draw enough right-wing fanatics away from her to destroy any hopes she has to be re-elected. Pougnet might make an especially interesting member of Congress-- he's gay, married to a man, raising two adorable children they adopted and... thinks he may be a Blue Dog! Only in the Inland Empire!

Progressive Mary Jo Kilroy (D-OH) is high on Republican target lists and they have the same sleazy bank lobbyist who she beat last time running against her this time, Steve Stivers. If being a sleazy bank lobbyist isn't a disqualification in a Republican Party primary-- in which Stivers has 3 opponents, at least one of whom is even further right than he is-- it's the general where teabagmania will do him in:
In what may be further bad news for Stivers, the field also includes a Libertarian-- William J. Kammerer-- and two Constitution Party candidates, David Ryon and Christopher A. Micisco. The Constitution Party candidates will square off in a primary, with the winner making the general election ballot.

The lineup echoes 2008, when Stivers and Kilroy were on the ballot as the major-party candidates and a Libertarian and independent social conservative also ran. The latter two candidates got about 9 percent of the vote combined, which some Stivers supporters say cost him the race.

In fact, Ohio Republicans' problems don't stop with the hapless Stivers. Over in the 12th district Pat Tiberi is fighting for the GOP nomination against one kook, Andrew Zukowski, while two teabaggers, Travis Irvine and Eddie Florek, want to challenge him in November.

And one state over, in Pennsylvania, with incredibly popular Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan breathing down flippy-floppy incumbent Charlie Dent's neck, Dent is being pressured to keep moving further and further away from the mainstream by two extremist opponents, one in the GOP primary, Matthew Benol, a leader of the Lehigh Valley Tea Party, and one in the general, another Tea Party fanatic, Jake Towne. PA-15 has been trending bluer and bluer while Dent has been forced to shed his "moderate" disguise and come out as a raging wingnut to protect his right flank. In 2000 Gore beat Bush 49-48% and four years later Kerry won in a tight 50-50 race. But in 2008 Obama buried McCain 56-43%. The district has continued looking for mainstream solutions while Dent has gone off the rails. It should be an interesting campaign season.

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At 12:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, re: Bill Lussenheide candidate for congress ca-45 AIP He is a hate monger but not a talk show host. He is a liar...ask him what show he has...NONE! He once ran some infomercial on radio about his "investment racket" business. He has been a window washer in menifee for about 20 years!! Yeah we need a self righteous window washer as our representative here in the inland!! NOT!!! Conspiracy loon too. He hangs out with another loon "chelene Nightingale" she is running for all things Governor of ca!!! AHHH what a hoot!!!

At 5:17 PM, Anonymous Montana said...

The Republicans need to get right with God! First the Republicans wanted to give Obama his Waterloo defeat over healthcare but instead they gave themselves their own Waterloo defeat by not participating in the debate of ideas and by becoming the party of obstructionist. Waterloo defeat refers of course to the defeat at Waterloo put an end to Napoleon's rule as Emperor of the French and was the culminating battle of the Waterloo Campaign and Napoleon's last. Republicans get right with God or get ready for future losses and Rush Limbaugh I real hope you enjoy your new home Costa Rica!

At 1:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Word in on Teabag hag Chelene Nightingale for governor 2010 AIP AIP LEADERS HAVE VOTED TO Not Allow Chelene Nightingale use the AIP party name on the november ballot. Nightingale has been adept at deceiving the party members and running a fraudulent campaign. She is a hatemonger and bankrupt conspiracy nut.

At 1:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why has Bill Lussneheide for congress ca-45 listed himself 'RETIRED" ON A DONATION SITE for a Chelene Nightingale for governor??? Documents online show he gave her cmapign 600.00 and listed his occupation as "retired" thats funny, on his own congressional campaign site he says he is "an investment advisor"/ window washer. Why would someone lie on a campaign donation form? IRS? dID NOT WANT HIS CLIENTS TO KNOW? wHAT IS THIS GUY HIDING ANYWAY??

At 1:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bill Lussenheide lost, he must be crying on his pisture of Stalin now. boo hoo


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