Posts Tagged ‘Republicans’

Right-to-Work Bill Passes Wisconsin Senate

Thursday, February 26th, 2015

The passage of Right-to-Work legislation in the Republican-controlled senate is no surprise, but the quick, efficient manner they’ve done it in is gratifying.

A right-to-work bill passed through the Wisconsin State Senate with a 15-17 majority and no amendments Wednesday as union-backing protesters gathered inside the Capitol building.

The vote comes after a rushed Senate Labor Committee hearing Tuesday and upcoming State Assembly debates to come next week. If the bill passes, Wisconsin will join 24 other right-to-work states and would abolish laws making union dues mandatory, which critics say would dissolve private sector unions.

Republican lawmakers unexpectedly announced on Friday they would take up the legislation in an extraordinary session to pass the bill as quickly as possible

Majority Leader Sen. Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, said Wednesday at the Senate debate it is time for Wisconsin to modernize its economy to keep up with competing states in the Midwest. He said passing right-to-work legislation is a step toward this goal and toward individual freedom.

Also: “Two gallery members interrupted Fitzgerald’s testimony to loudly express their opposition to right-to-work and as a result, Capitol Police escorted them out of the parlor. Senate President Sen. Mary Lazich, R-New Berlin, warned gallery members another interruption would lead to the expulsion of the entire gallery.”

It’s almost as if the ridiculous recall circus completely united the Republican majority against union bullying!

Republicans hold a 63 to 36 edge in the Wisconsin Assembly, so Right-to-Work legislation should pass easily there and go on to a quick signature from Governor Walker.

Nice job, Wisconsin union goons and left-wing allies! If you hadn’t alienated so many ordinary Wisconsinites with your embarrassing, hysterical temper tantrum, none of this would have been possible…

Wisconsin Unions Double Down On Stupid

Tuesday, February 24th, 2015

If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, then Wisconsin union leaders may be clinically insane.

Their suicidal idée fixe is on Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and his labor law reforms. You may remember how the rude, narcissistic, and counterproductive intimidation tactics employed during the Walker’s recall election backfired on them.

Indeed, it was the recall election that made Scott Walker what he is today:

The ferocity of the anti-Walker attacks during the recall attempt cannot be understated: no stone was left unturned, no “scandal” or slip of the tongue left unmentioned, and this may only help candidate Walker going into 2016. The Democrats spent millions of dollars and thousands of hours digging, scooping, ad-cutting, and hammering. They threw the kitchen sink at the guy in 2012, threw their neighbor’s sink at him in 2014, and now nobody on the block will let them inside to pee. Out of useful topsoil, what do they do now?

Had the Democrats not targeted Walker with a recall, that massive fundraiser network, the national profile, the party unity, and his highly developed get-out-the-vote team almost certainly wouldn’t exist. He may have still won re-election, but he would be just another Midwestern Republican governor who enacted reforms and faced push-back, not the conservative folk hero of a party longing for a win. He would most likely resemble Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, a reformer but hardly a man with a cult following. There would still be plenty of new problems with the governor his opposition could cite, instead of leaving him mostly vetted for 2016.

They shot the king and missed, making a balding, sleepy-eyed executive into a god among a growing horde of followers. That’s bad enough for the Progressive set. In the unlikely event he wins the Republican nomination and the presidency? They struck the match that ignited their own national hell.

And what happened after Walker’s reforms went through and public employee unions could no longer force people to join? Union membership plummeted. Over 100,000 workers availed themselves of the opportunity to escape union clutches when they were finally allowed to. That’s why unions will never forgive Scott Walker: his reforms proved that workers hated the unions that supposedly represented them.

And Walker’s success has emboldened Republicans in other states to take on unions, which has the Democratic Party terrified. “Public-employee unions are a mechanism for the involuntary transfer of taxpayers’ money to the Democratic party.”

Now Walker and the Republican legislature aim to make Wisconsin a full right to work state. Naturally, Democrats and unions (the latter being an extension of the former) are gearing up to fight it.

Strategically, I understand why Democrats and unions have to fight this fight. What I don’t understand is why the anti-Walker crowd continues to employ the same “stuck on stupid” tactics against Walker that have lost them the last three elections.

Loud, annoying protest in the capitol rotunda guaranteed to alienate swing voters? Check.

Marches? Chants? Check.

Clenched fist Socialist Realism iconography? Check.

About the only thing they’re missing from the recall circus is the drum circle.

They even sent union goons to harass Walkers’ parents at their home. Because that’s such a sure fire way to win over people.

Now word comes that Wisconsin Unions are contemplating a general strike. Presumably because they couldn’t think of anything else so likely to: A.) Fail, and B.) Lose the supporting of those few remaining independents their previous tactics hadn’t already turned off.

It’s like Wisconsin unions are doing everything they can to get Scott Walker elected President in 2016…

John B. Judis Turns 180º, Proclaims Coming Republican Advantage

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

John B. Judis is most famous for proclaiming that rising minority populations would make Democrats America’s natural majority party before too long, a theme he expounded upon in The Emerging Democratic Majority (with Ruy Teixeira) in 2002.

Now Judis has taken a look at trends from the last few elections and said Whoa! Not so fast Jose…

At the time, some commentators, including me, hailed the onset of an enduring Democratic majority. And the arguments in defense of this view did seem to be backed by persuasive evidence. Obama and the Democrats appeared to have captured the youngest generation of voters, whereas Republicans were relying disproportionately on an aging coalition. The electorate’s growing ethnic diversity also seemed likely to help the Democrats going forward.

These advantages remain partially in place for Democrats today, but they are being severely undermined by two trends that have emerged in the past few elections—one surprising, the other less so. The less surprising trend is that Democrats have continued to hemorrhage support among white working-class voters—a group that generally works in blue-collar and lower-income service jobs and that is roughly identifiable in exit polls as those whites who have not graduated from a four-year college. These voters, and particularly those well above the poverty line, began to shift toward the GOP decades ago, but in recent years that shift has become progressively more pronounced.

The more surprising trend is that Republicans are gaining dramatically among a group that had tilted toward Democrats in 2006 and 2008: Call them middle-class Americans. These are voters who generally work in what economist Stephen Rose has called “the office economy.” In exit polling, they can roughly be identified as those who have college—but not postgraduate—degrees and those whose household incomes are between $50,000 and $100,000. (Obviously, the overlap here is imperfect, but there is a broad congruence between these polling categories.)

The defection of these voters—who, unlike the white working class, are a growing part of the electorate—is genuinely bad news for Democrats, and very good news indeed for Republicans. The question, of course, is whether it is going to continue. It’s tough to say for sure, but I think there is a case to be made that it will.

Never mind that Judis is a fairly hardcore Democratic Party partisan, or that some of his “advice” to Republicans is off-base. To basically reverse himself on his biggest prediction is rather like Charles Murray going “I’ve changed my mind, the Great Society welfare programs were great!”

The piece is heavy on demographic shifts and very light on the causes of those shifts. He makes some noises on tax burdens (which I’m sure is true), but makes little or no mention of ObamaCare’s deep unpopularity, widespread opposition to illegal alien amnesty, or the counterproductive, alienating effects of the Democratic Party’s Social justice Warrior cadres alienating “core swing voters,” i.e. the “70 to 75 percent” of middle class voters who are white.

Maybe Judis is using this as an opportunity for concern trolling (as when he suggests the GOP’s ideal 2016 nominee “soft-pedals social issues, including immigration”). But for him to not only say he was wrong before, but to come to conclusions that can’t help but alienate significant fractions of the Democratic Liberal Mediopolitical Complex, he must be seeing something in the data even more momentous than what he’s already describing, and he wants to get ahead of the curve…

Who Is Behind “Texas Citizens Coalition”?

Monday, February 2nd, 2015

Back in the middle of January I got a four-page flyer form an outfit calling itself the “Texas Citizens Coalition.” The group is headed up by Rosenberg realtor Gary Gates.

Their ostensible goals sound conservative enough:

1. A smaller role for government at all levels

2. The elimination of over-reach and reduced regulation

3. A pro-business, pro-capitalism environment

4. Personal responsibility

All well and good. But why drop a flyer two months after the election?

My working theory is that Texas Citizens Coalition is another group created with the express purpose of supporting Speaker Joe Straus against his conservative critics.

Supporting evidence for the theory:

  • One of their first news blurbs is from Straus himself. (The fact that the most recent bit of “Latest News” is from January ninth suggests lack of follow-through on TCC’s part…)
  • Note that every single legislator singled out for praise in page 2 of the flyer was not among those backing Scott Turner for Speaker.
  • Note that many of those praised legislators (Giovanni Capriglione, Tan Parker, Drew Springer and Jason Villalba) were all notable for declaring themselves Straus supporters in November.
  • The only groups that have been dropping flyers to my mailbox post-election have been pro-Straus groups.
  • Finally, I sent an email through their contact address asking if they were formed explicitly to support Straus, and received no reply.
  • If anyone has an alternate explanation, I’d be happy to hear it. Here’s the flyer itself:

    TCC1

    TCC2

    TCC3

    TCC4

    LinkSwarm for January 30, 2015

    Friday, January 30th, 2015

    Already the end of January? How did that happen?

    Some links:

  • Mitt Romney is not running for President in 2016. Good. Now the media can stop sucking all the oxygen out of the race running will-he-or-won’t-he stories.
  • In a way-too-early poll, Scott Walker is within three points of Hillary.
  • And speaking of Scott Walker: “In America, it is one of the few places left in the world where it doesn’t matter what class you were born in to. It doesn’t matter what your parents do for a living. In America the opportunity is equal for each and every one of us but in America the ultimate outcome is up to each and every one of us individually.” Liberal critic: “That’s racist!”
  • Swedish reporter assaulted while wearing a kippah to test attitudes toward Jews.
  • Mark Steyn: “Extending special privilege to Islam corrodes free speech.”
  • America has no strategy in the Middle East. Or much of anywhere else…
  • Actual New York Times headline: “Bomb Blast at Shiite Muslim Mosque in Pakistan Kills 56.” As opposed to all those Shiite Christian Mosques?
  • Union leader found guilty of “extortion, racketeering and conspiracy.”
  • “It’s not enough to punish men for things they haven’t done. Women must be kept away from men, for their own good, because of the crimes those men haven’t committed.”
  • Jonathan Chait is shocked, SHOCKED to discover liberals opposing free speech.
  • “I fought for women to be anything, but also for women to choose to be a stay-at-home mom.”
  • Russian bonds cut to junk grade.
  • Apple posts the largest quarterly profit in the history of the world.
  • Governor Abbott declares February 2 Chris Kyle Day.
  • Andrew Sullivan to stop blogging, an event almost as tragic as the cancellation of Cop Rock.
  • Related Iowahawk tweet:

  • Sports Illustrated lays off all its photographers. Maybe they should change the name to just Sports. Personally I stopped reading the online version when Peter King decided his column would be a fine place to pimp for gun control…
  • There was a rally in Austin for school choice:

  • I LOLed:

  • Ted Cruz’s Speech At The Iowa Freedom Summit

    Wednesday, January 28th, 2015

    Why yes, I am feeling a bit lazy today. Why do you ask?

    Sorry for the audio buzz, but it seems to be from the event itself rather than a video artifact.

    LinkSwarm for January 23, 2015

    Friday, January 23rd, 2015

    This week haw been incredibly busy, so enjoy a briefer-than-usual LinkSwarm:

  • Eric S. Raymond on how Social Justice Warriors use Kafkatrapping, which presumes you are guilty until you are proven guilty or admit your guilt.
  • Instapundit on why Jews are leaving France. “Because they don’t feel welcome, and because they don’t feel safe.”
  • More about Europe’s jihadist “no go” zones.
  • New York Assembly speaker and longtime Democratic Party power-broker Sheldon Silver arrested for taking over $4 million in bribes.
  • “America’s lifestyle expectations are far too high and need to be adjusted so we have less things and a smaller, better existence” says billionaire who flew his family to Davos on his private plane.
  • I have nothing significant to say on the death of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. Abdullah’s “reforms” were so small as to not be worth talking about, the Saudis are not our friends, they continue to export violent, backward Wahhabism, and they are occasionally useful but untrustworthy allies in a region where sometimes they are among the least horrible of possible alternatives.
  • Hillary Clinton Is George Costanza. Every decision she’s ever made in her entire life has been wrong.” (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Marco Rubio is in. (Hat tip: Jim Geraghty’s Morning Jolt.)
  • Boy does the liberal media hate American Sniper.
  • Related: Chris Kyle Derangement Syndrome.
  • Like father, like son.
  • Guess what happened at a concert against violence? Go ahead. Guess.
  • Dilbert via Twitter:

  • Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick Sworn In

    Tuesday, January 20th, 2015

    Greg Abbott has been sworn in as the 48th Governor of Texas, and Dan Patrick has been sworn in as Lt. Governor.

  • Gregg Abbott’s inaugural address.
  • Dan Patrick’s inaugural address.
  • LinkSwarm for January 19, 2015

    Monday, January 19th, 2015

    Enjoy a Monday LinkSwarm to get your week started:

  • Police conduct anti-terrorism raids in Germany, Belgium and France. Could this be the start of a real effort to halt Islamic extremism in Europe? I rather doubt it. Too many leftist parties across Europe need Muslim votes, and European elites still seem implacably hostile to the Euroskeptic parties pushing for an end to unlimited Muslim immigration.
  • Old and Busted: Never again! The New Hotness: More dead Jews? Meh.
  • The late Anwar al-Awlaki was good at two things: drawing up plans to kill innocent people in the name of Islam, and banging skanky whores.
  • The Prime Minister of France: “I refuse to use this term ‘Islamophobia,’ because those who use this word are trying to invalidate any criticism at all of Islamist ideology.” (Hat tip: JihadWatch.)
  • More from France’s PM on the new antisemitism:

    “There is a new anti-Semitism in France,” he told me. “We have the old anti-Semitism, and I’m obviously not downplaying it, that comes from the extreme right, but this new anti-Semitism comes from the difficult neighborhoods, from immigrants from the Middle East and North Africa, who have turned anger about Gaza into something very dangerous. Israel and Palestine are just a pretext. There is something far more profound taking place now.”

    In discussing the attacks on French synagogues and Jewish-owned businesses this summer, during the Gaza war, he said, “It is legitimate to criticize the politics of Israel. This criticism exists in Israel itself. But this is not what we are talking about in France. This is radical criticism of the very existence of Israel, which is anti-Semitic. There is an incontestable link between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism. Behind anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism.”

  • Michael Totten quotes the late Christopher Hitchens. on the jihadist opinion of the current controversy: “Carving up grandfathers and granddaughters with an axe on New Year’s Eve can be okay if it’s done to protect the reputation of a seventh century Arabian man who heard voices.”
  • Bobby Jindal: “Islam has a problem.”
  • Victimology is the language and currency of our politics.”
  • All those Harvard professors supporting ObamaCare are shocked to discover they’re paying for it.
  • “In 2009, 76 Democrats represented primarily white working-class congressional districts. Just 15 of them are still in the House today.”

    A majority of the GOP gains since then have come from the Democrats’ near-total collapse in one set of districts: the largely blue-collar places in which the white share of the population exceeds the national average, and the portion of whites with at least a four-year college degree is less that the national average. While Republicans held a 20-seat lead in the districts that fit that description in the 111th Congress, the party has swelled that advantage to a crushing 125 seats today. That 105-seat expansion of the GOP margin in these districts by itself accounts for about three-quarters of the 136-seat swing from the Democrats’ 77-seat majority in 2009 to the 59-seat majority Republicans enjoy in the Congress convening now.

  • “It was not merely Democratic politicians who were wiped out in November. A plethora of liberal shibboleths were also massacred.”
  • Virginia voters won’t let a little thing like pleading guilty of contributing to the delinquency of a minor prevent him from regaining his seat in the House of Delegates. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades.)
  • How big is Texas?
  • Three myths about Medicaid expansion. I hope that Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick understand that we didn’t elect them to cave in on ObamaCare…
  • Are your tweets University of Indiana-approved, comrade? (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Feminism’s empathy gap. Or the Shanley Kanes of the world reject the experiences of women that don’t fit their preferred victimhood narrative…
  • How a Global Warming true believer became a skeptic.
  • 10 bodies, 11 severed heads found in Mexico.
  • Pictures of empty Venezuelan store shelves, as Socialism continue to work its usual magic.
  • Liberal California billionaire Tom Steyer may run for the senate. Hopefully he’ll have the same luck as the politicians he donated to in 2014…
  • Only found out recently that Death by Government and genocide/democide expert R. J. Rummel died March 2, 2014.
  • Conservatives win several rule fights in the Texas House.
  • Rick Perry’s farewell address.
  • Gregg Abbott’s inauguration will have 4 tons of brisket. Or, as we call it in Texas, “an appetizer.”
  • Times when climbing down a chimney is a good idea: Your name is “Santa Claus.” Otherwise? Not so much.
  • A cure for cracked winter hands.
  • “My personality is as spartan as a Danish furniture catalog, why can’t yours be the same?” (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • American Sniper kills at the box office:

  • Straus Re-Elected Speaker. And It Wasn’t Close.

    Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

    Sadly, my previous analysis was right on the money. Straus maintained his hold on the Texas Speaker’s chair by a 127-19 margin over Scott Turner. For all the numerous Tea Party endorsements of House candidates (indeed, the North Texas Tea Party said that a vote for Straus for Speaker would preclude their endorsement), it seems that only a tiny minority of Tea Party-endorsed candidates are interested in challenging Straus’ iron grip.

    I would be most interested in hearing behind-the-scenes information on how Straus has managed to continue to procure the votes of so many conservative Republicans despite widespread grassroots opposition to Straus’ Speakership…