Tag Archives: Karl Rove

Politics: Born Again Birther Party – reminder from 2011

doilookillegalIn July 2008, a researcher “looking to dig up dirt on Obama” instead came across a birth announcement from 1961 in the Honolulu Advertiser documenting the birth of then-presidential candidate Barack Obama in the state. The document, together with Obama’s certificate of live birth which showed his birth date, birth city, name, and parenta l information, definitively proved that Obama was born in the United States and is eligible to run for president. Yet, the conspiracy has lived on within the right-wing bowels of the Republican Party for the past couple of years. Most recently, real estate mogul and possible presidential hopeful Donald Trump has taken to the airwaves to challenge the legitimacy of Obama’s presidency. And while Trump claims that he’d rather be talking about how China and OPEC “are going to destroy us,” he has instead distracted the public with his fabricated controversy and used it to drum up right-wing support for his rumored presidential bid. Trump’s birtherism may have propelled him at the forefront of the Republican presidential primary, but it could also cause the credibility of the entire GOP 2012 field to take a steep fall.

RIGHT-WING BUY IN: Since the end of March, Trump has gone from being “really concerned” that “Obama was not born in this country” to insisting that his grandparents essentially lied about his birthplace to collect welfare and other citizenship “assets.” Trump’s colleagues haven’t backed away from his increasingly controversial comments. Instead, they have either tacitly or expressly supported his birther media blitz. Sarah Palin, who once said the “birther” issue is a “distraction” from the important issues, said on Sunday, “I appreciate that the Donald wants to spend his resources on something that so interests him and so many Americans, you know more power to him.” Pizza mogul Herman Cain was one of the first public figures who came to Trump’s defense, stating, “I respect people that believe he should prove his citizenship. He should prove he was born in the United States of America.” Republican National Committee chair Reince Priebus has signaled that the RNC is willing and ready to embrace a Trump candidacy. Meanwhile, the GOP congressional leadership has its own history of tiptoeing around the issue. In the past, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) has refused to call quest ions about President Obama’s citizenship illegitimate and declined to label such rhetoric “crazy,” saying “I don’t think it’s nice to call anyone crazy, ok?” House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) hasn’t challenged his colleagues’ birther beliefs because, according to him, “it’s not up to me to tell them what to think.”

BIRTHER BILLS: The birther conspiracy has also been rearing its ugly head at the state-level. At least 13 states have had bills introduced that would require future presidential candidates to document their eligibility with birth certificates or other forms of proof that they were born in the United States. Committee actions have blocked such proposals in New Hampshire, Montana, Iowa, Maine, and Tennessee. Yet, in Arizona, the so-called “birther bill” is very much alive. Back in December, Arizona state Senate President Russell Pearce (R) was already bragging about the fact that Obama would have to “show his papers” to enter his state. Last week, the Arizona Senate gave preliminary approval to a bill which would require any presidential candidate to prove to state election officials that he or she was born in the U.S. by presenting a long-form birth certificate, a baptismal or circumcision certificate, a hospital birth record, a postpartum medical record, or an early census record. Trump was involved. Arizona state Rep. Carl Seel (R) scored a meeting with Trump and indicated that “Mr. Trump is very supportive of my bill to just simply require anyone running for president, or, in the case of Arizona, anyone running for any office, to show that they’re lawfully qualified to run.” Last Thursday, the Oklahoma House of Representatives also approved similar legislation. “A lot of people are classifying this as a birther bill which I don’t think it is,” said state Sen. Ralph Shortey (R). “The concern has stemmed from the questions that have arisen from President Obama.” The evidence that Obama has provided so far would not meet the eligibility requirements of Shorte y’s bill and would block him from appearing on the Oklahoma ballot. As David Corn of Mother Jones points out, these proposals are all “part of a well-orchestrated campaign to deny Obama reelection.” Despite their limited legislative success, the birther conspiracy theory isn’t passing legal muster in the courts. In Hawaii, an appeals court upheld the dismissal of a California man’s lawsuit which sought to inspect and review President Oba­ma’s birth certificate.

DOUBLE-EDGED SWORD: Several conservatives have traditionally been wary of promoting birtherism just to pander to the right. In 2009, conservative talk show host Michael Medved called the movement’s leaders “crazy, nutburger, demagogue, money-hungry, exploitative, irresponsible, filthy conservative imposters” who are “the worst enemy of the conservative movement.” “It makes us look weird. It makes us look crazy. It makes us look demented. It makes us look sick, troubled, and not suitable for civilized company,” declared Medved. Former Minnesota Governor and presidential hopeful Tim Pawlenty (R) has dismissed birtherism entirely, stating, “I, for one, do not believe that we should be raising that issue. … I think President Obama was born in the United States.” Karl Rove tried to distance the rest of the GOP from the issue, saying, “The right-wing base of the Republican party, I’m part of that right-wing base, is not in love with the issue of birthers. I mean, there is an element inside the Republican party, and outside the Republican party, that’s fallen in love with this but the majority of Republicans and the vast majority of Americans accept that he is a U.S. citizen capable of being president.” Rove is only partly right. While only 11 percent of the general public believes Obama was definitely not born in the United States, more than half of all GOP primary voters are convinced he is not a U.S.-born citizen. White House senior adviser David Plouffe dismissed Trump’s birther beliefs on Sunday, stating “I saw Donald Trump kind of rising in the polls. Given his behavior, and the spectacle of the last couple of weeks, I hope he keeps on rising. … There’s zero chance that Donald Trump would ever be hired by the American people to do this job.” “If I were them, I’d be really careful riding that birther horse too much,” weighed in former President Bill Clinton. “Everyone knows it’s ludicrous.” Others say it’s just downright racist.

now look at what we have! sigh

sources: Internet , originally posted 2011


Whites Only?


The GOP’s Demographic Doom

Some in the Republican Party continue to argue that the party can make up for its abysmal standing with minority voters by becoming more conservative in order to attract and turn out more white voters.

CAP Senior Fellow Ruy Teixeira lays out fresh evidence why this whites-only strategy is destined to fail:

5. White voters are increasingly likely to be single and secular. The idea that the GOP can get higher and higher levels of support from white voters presupposes that the white population is likely to get ever-more conservative and therefore inclined to vote Republican. But what if the reverse is true? Two factors that could make the white population more liberal are family and religion. Thirty five percent of white voters in 2012 were unmarried, compared to 30 percent in 1984. Unmarried whites are far more likely to vote Democratic than married ones.

And in just a five year span from 2007 to 2012, the percentage of whites who are religiously unaffiliated rose from 15 to 20 percent. According to Brownstein, Democrats have averaged a 32 point advantage with white secular voters since 2000.

4. A smaller and smaller proportion of white voters are working class. Working class or non-college educated voters are among the most conservative white voters, regularly giving Republicans a 12-14 point larger margin than they receive among white college graduates. But white working class voters are declining precipitously as a share of voters (down from 54 to 36 percent between 1988 and 2012) while white college graduates are increasing their share (from 31 to 36 percent over the same time period). That means that the white working class is also declining as a share of white voters. Back in 1988, 64 percent of white voters were white working class; by 2012, that figure had dropped to just half of white voters. This trend is likely to continue for many years making the white vote a harder not easier target for GOP appeals.

3. The rise of the Millennial generation. The Millennial generation, as has been widely documented, is the most liberal generation in the electorate by a considerable margin. This is also true of white Millennials—they are considerably more progressive than their older counterparts.  In the last two elections, the Republic margin among white Millennials has averaged 20 points below that among white voters as a whole.  And Millennials are becoming a larger and larger proportion of the white electorate with every passing year. By the time the 2020 election is held, they’ll make up about two out of every five (37 percent) of all white voters.

2. White Republicans are too concentrated in the most conservative areas of the country. Even assuming Republicans can get past the factors above and continue inflating the national support among whites, that will not necessarily yield success against Democrats’ domination of the electoral college. As Brownstein points out, “Romney’s national margins among the various groups of white voters are inflated by Obama’s utter collapse in the country’s most conservative regions, particularly the South.” This chart makes his point plainly — Obama did much better among white voters in competitive states than in the South or Appalachia:

whites by state1. Every year, the pool of white voters shrinks. The most important reason why the GOP’s desperate quest to squeeze ever more voters out of the white population is doomed to fail is that every year there are fewer of them. How Republicans can look at charts like this one:


Or this one:


and still place their faith in a white people forever strategy is beyond me. But they do.

Republicans seem to think they will soon be matching the Gipper’s 64 percent share of the white vote in his 1984 re-election victory and then some. But, as Karl Rove (!) put it, “it’s unreasonable to expect Republicans to routinely pull numbers that last occurred in a 49-state sweep.” Unreasonable the white voters strategy may be, but since when has that stopped the contemporary Republican party from believing something?

BOTTOM LINE: Instead of demanding more damaging austerity and pursuing an endless series of unpopular attacks on Obamacare, Republicans should attempt to broaden their appeal by pursuing policies like immigration reform with a pathway to earned citizenship.

The Real Voices of Small Business

| By ThinkProgress War Room

What Small Businesses Really Think About the Issues

Republicans talk a lot about small businesses out on the campaign trail, but often times the “small businesses” they talk about are anything but. According to Republicans, Donald Trump, Oprah, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, and construction giant Becthel, the largest construction company in America, are all small businesses.

In order to clear the air, the Center for American Progress and Small Business Majority, an advocacy group for actual small businesses, talked to the owners of small businesses across the country about a range of issues, including taxes and Obamacare.

Here’s a couple examples of what we heard.

Small Businesses Aren’t Impacted by Expiration of Bush Tax Cuts

Mike Brey, owner of Hobby Works in Fairfax, Va., wants to set the record straight on the Bush tax cuts—cuts on those with income above $250,000. Despite some saying that allowing the cuts to expire will hurt small businesses, the vast majority of small business owners like him simply won’t be affected. Allowing the tax rates to go back to where they were will help bolster the economy and with it, Mike’s customer base—the middle class.

Affordable Care Act Makes Portland Business More Competitive

For Mike Roach, owner of Paloma Clothing in Portland, Oregon, providing health insurance for his employees is not just the right thing to do—it makes his business more competitive and helps him retain valuable employees. Mike explains how the Affordable Care Act has allowed him to pick up more of the tab of his employees’ healthcare premiums, a key benefit that keeps his small store competitive with the big chains.

Check out our entire series of small business voices HERE, which includes small business owners weighing in on taxes, Obamacare, public lands, clean energy, and more.

These are the real voices of small business, unlike the National Federation of Independent Business. Though the group purports to represent the interests of small businesses, it often advocates against their interests, is funded by millions of dollars from Karl Rove’s secret money group Crossroads GPS, and spends most of its time attacking the Obama administration and running campaign attack ads targeting Democrats. NFIB was also the lead plaintiff in the partisan legal attacks on Obamacare, though thankfully its efforts failed at the Supreme Court.

NFIB is in the news today because it recently hosted a conference call with Mitt Romney, the audio of which leaked yesterday. On the call Romney urges employers to tell their employees who to vote, something the Koch brothers and other CEOs have been caught doing in recent weeks. You can listen to the shocking audio of the leaked call HERE.

Evening Brief: Important Stories That You Might’ve Missed

The Defense of Marriage Act was struck down by a federal appeals court — in an opinion written by an extremely conservative judge.

Despite court order, Ohio’s GOP Secretary of State is still cutting back on early voting.

Romney’s economic policy director was lobbying for Wall Street just three months ago.

Virginia health commissioner resigns in protest of new politically-motivated, restrictive regulations on abortion providers.

No, Mitt Romney’s sketchy tax plan still doesn’t add up.

Maryland voters appear set to approve both marriage equality and a DREAM Act.

Why won’t the Romney campaign say where he stands on equal pay laws?

A tale of two Romneys.

Romney’s bizarro version of equal rights.

a message from Alan Grayson

 We’re Back On The Air – Thanks To You

Three People and a Guitar.

We told you on Sunday that we were off the air, thanks to the fact that the Koch Brothers and Karl Rove had pushed the cost of TV ads in Orlando sky-high.  And we said that we would take all of the contributions that we received through close of business yesterday, and use that money to put our uplifting, inspirational positive ad back on TV.

Well, 1000+ of us answered the call, and that ad went back up on the air this morning.

If you are one of those 1000+ supporters who contributed, thank you.  If you are not, then you can alleviate the desperate guilt and shame that you must feel by contributing right now. You will soon feel better.  And after Nov. 6, so will America.

Here is today’s miscellany:

(1)            The winner of the Green Day autographed guitar is Judith Wilson.  If you are disappointed that you didn’t win the Green Day guitar, all I can say is that my younger daughter is even more disappointed than you are, and she didn’t win it, either.  Thanks again to Howie Klein, former Warner Reprise Records exec and current Blue America PAC leader, who provided the guitar from his incredible personal collection.  We wanted to make the presentation of the guitar as special as the guitar itself, so we invited Democratic House Assistant Leader Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) to present the guitar to Judith during Clyburn’s visit to Orlando, last Friday.

(2)            Dennis Kucinich wants to continue to do good after he leaves Congress in January.  He has founded an organization called Kucinich Action, which will function as a political action committee.  Kucinich Action is deciding which candidates to support.  Naturally, I hope that I’m one of them.  If you have a moment, please click here, and ask Kucinich Action to support yours truly.

(3)            Good news and bad news about our campaign.  The good news is that our poll last week shows us with a nice lead.  The bad news is that a right-wing Super PAC that attacks House Democratic candidates has reserved almost $1 million in TV time in Orlando for the last two weeks in October.  So . . . we need your help.

(4)            A reminder to those who find themselves with more time than money these days – please sign up for our virtual phone bank.  It helps you to make calls to voters in our district.  We need your help on this, like, now.

(5)            On Sunday, we are having our last moneybomb of his election cycle – “30 Days to Victory.”  When you decide whether to participate, please remember one thing – this is virtually the only campaign in America, in either party, that is fueled by contributions from people like you.  Not the special interests, not the lobbyists, not the billionaires, not the multinational corporations.  People like you.   And because of that, when we win on Nov. 6, I will owe nothing to anyone but the voters.  Thanks to you.


Alan Grayson

A message from Alan Grayson … “Fight Corporate Smears” Moneybomb

The purpose of this e-mail is two-fold. First, we’d like to know whether you want to support our “Fight Corporate Smears” Moneybomb. The second is that we would like to know whether you want to continue to receive e-mails from us.If you already know the answers to those questions, then please click on one of these two buttons:
(1) Contribute, (2) Click to Show Your Support, or (3) Say Goodbye


E-mails actually cost money. If you don’t want to hear from us, we’re happy not to send them. No hard feelings.If you do like to hear from us, but you’re sure that you don’t want to contribute today, that’s OK, too – just click this button, and you’ll stay on our list:
If you want to stay with us, but not contribute, then all we ask is that you just click on that button – that’s not asking so much, is it? But if you think that you might want to contribute, or at least hear what we have to say today, then read on:People have asked why we are doing a “Fight Corporate Smears” Moneybomb this week.

The answer is that we have to. There is no alternative.

Right in front of our eyes, the right wing in America is strip-mining the political landscape, polluting it with wave after wave of hateful propaganda and lies. First the radio, then the newspapers, and now TV are virtually all right-wing, virtually all the time. And that’s just the “news” coverage; the paid ads are even worse.

In 2010, I was the target of more than $5 million in “sewer money” smears. A few weeks before the election, the newspaper Politico calculated that almost 20% of all of the “independent expenditures” in House races in the entire country had been spent against me. And no cavalry came to my rescue – certainly not the imaginary “liberal media.”

All of the big money is on one side – the side of Big Money. After the 2010 election, the Center for Media and Democracy reported that spending by outside groups had risen by “at least 500 percent.” Pro-Republican groups had outspent pro-Democratic groups by 7 to 1. Public Citizen calculated that in the 53 House competitive districts where Karl Rove and his allies outspent Democratic groups, the Republicans won 51.

The right-wing has only one tool, and it needs only one tool – the slanderous attack ad. I don’t know what’s worse: the fact that Karl Rove and the Koch Brothers dictate what voters see and hear in September and October of each election year, or the fact that it’s all lies, lies, lies. Completely unconstrained by reality.

And now it has started again. Already, the typical voter in Orlando has seen another one of those vicious, malicious anti-Grayson ads ten times during the month of May alone. Politifact and Factcheck.org both proclaimed the ads outrageous lies. The other side couldn’t care less.

So what are we going to do about it? Unlike the Republicans, I can’t auction off tax breaks, bailouts, subsidies, regulatory exemptions, government contracts and other goodies to the highest bidder. I can’t, and I won’t.

We have to find some other way to fight back. And that involves you.

The Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision unleashed the dogs of this one-sided war. I was in the courtroom during the decision. That night, on national TV, I said, “If we do nothing, you can kiss this country goodbye.”

When I said “we,” I meant you.

The only way that we can fight back against corporate smears, and win, is if you contribute to this campaign. There is no alternative. We need your help, and we need it now.

OK, so now we will offer you the same choices:

Or do nothing, and you will not hear from us again.You decide your future. And everyone else’s too.

Truly Yours,

Alan Grayson

P.S. We’re serious about this. Please click on one button, or the other. Either way, we’re happy to have your support.

8419 Oak Park Road, Orlando, FL 32819

Paid for and Authorized by the Committee to Elect Alan Grayson