Archive for the ‘Republican’ Category

Forced Abortion In China Draws Attention of Media, Lawmakers

November 17, 2008

A mother of two faces a forced abortion in China this week, according to human rights groups, a violation they say demonstrates that the most brutal aspects of China’s population control policies are still prevalent in the county’s western regions.

forced abortion

A mother of two faces a forced abortion in China this week, according to human rights groups, a violation they say demonstrates that the most brutal aspects of China’s population control policies are still prevalent in the county’s western regions.

Arzigul Tursun, six months pregnant with her third child, is under guard in a hospital in China’s northwestern Xinjiang region, scheduled to undergo an abortion against her will because authorities say she is entitled to only two children, according to the Uyghur Human Rights Project.

The case has sparked outrage in the United States among members of Congress. Republican Chris Smith of New Jersey, the House Ranking Member on the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, called forced abortions a “barbaric practice,” and made a personal appeal on behalf of Tursun directly to Chinese ambassador Zhou Wenzhong.

By Anna Schecter, ABC News

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http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/story?id=6256644&page=1

The Electorate’s Left Turn: Sorry, GOP: Nation No Longer Leans Right of Center

November 16, 2008

Here’s the main thought Republicans are consoling themselves with these days: Notwithstanding President-elect Barack Obama, a nearly filibuster-proof Democratic majority in the Senate and the largest Democratic majority in the House of Representatives since 1993, the United States is still a center-right country. Sure, voters may be angry with Republicans now, but eventually, as the Bush years recede and the GOP modernizes its brand, a basically right-tilting electorate will come back home. Or, in the words of the animated rock band the Gorillaz, “I’m useless, but not for long/The future is comin’ on.”  

By Tod Lindberg
The Washington Post
Sunday, November 16, 2008; Page B01

Thus Rich Lowry, the editor of National Review, in Outlook last week: The United States “is indeed, as conservatives have been insisting in recent days, a center-right country.” On election night, former Bush guru Karl Rove opined on Fox News, “Barack Obama understands this is a center-right country, and he smartly and wisely ran a campaign that emphasized it.” And it’s not just conservative pundits and operatives singing this song. Take Newsweek editor Jon Meacham, who wrote an Oct. 27 cover essay entitled “America the Conservative,” which argued that Obama will have to “govern a center-right nation” that “is more instinctively conservative than it is liberal.”

The only problem: It isn’t true….

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/w
p-dyn/content/article/2008/11/13
/AR2008111303550.html

Mitch McConnell: Washington’s most important Republican and second-most consequential elected official

November 13, 2008

“I hope to have God on my side, but I must have Kentucky.

Abraham Lincoln

Which is how discerning conservatives felt while waiting to see if, in Election Day’s second-most important voting, Kentuckians would grant a fifth term to Mitch McConnell, leader of the Senate Republicans. They did, making him Washington’s most important Republican and second-most consequential elected official. This apotheosis has happened even though he is handicapped by, as National Review rather cruelly says, “an owlish, tight-lipped public demeanor reminiscent of George Will.”

Mitch McConnell

That disability is, however, a strength because it precludes an occupational hazard of senators — presidential ambition. Besides, McConnell, 66, is completely a man of the Senate. At 22, he was an intern for Sen. John Sherman Cooper and went from law school to the staff of Sen. Marlow Cook. Because McConnell has been so thoroughly marinated in the institution’s subtle mores and complex rules, he will wring maximum leverage from probably 43 Republican votes.

Which is why Democrats spared no expense in attempting to unhorse him, recruiting a rich opponent and supplementing his spending with $6 million from the national party. McConnell, to his great credit, had made himself vulnerable by opposing the “Millionaires’ Amendment” to the McCain-Feingold law restricting political speech. That amendment punished wealthy, self-financing candidates by allowing their opponents to spend much more than the law otherwise allows. Last summer, the Supreme Court struck down the amendment for the reasons McConnell opposed it, including this one: Government has no business fine-tuning electoral competition by equalizing candidates’ abilities to speak.

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/w
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Republican Sparring Starts Amid “Honesty About Eight Years of Failure”

November 11, 2008

By Adam Nagourney
The New York Times 

Above: Newt Gingrich, in New York on Monday, said Republicans should be honest “about the level of failure for the past eight years.” Photo: Todd Heisler/The New York Times
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The competition to fill the vacuum left by Senator John McCain’s defeat — and by the unpopularity of President Bush as he prepares to leave office — will be on full display at a Republican Governors Association meeting beginning Wednesday in Miami.
The session will showcase a roster of governors positioning themselves as leaders or future presidential candidates, including Sarah Palin of Alaska, Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota, Charlie Crist of Florida, Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, Haley Barbour of Mississippi and Mark Sanford of South Carolina.

At the same time, Republicans representing diverse views about the party’s direction are preparing to fight for the chairmanship of the Republican National Committee

, a prominent post when the party is out of the White House. The current chairman, Mike Duncan, has signaled that he wants to stay on after his term expires in January, but he is facing challenges from leaders in Florida, Mississippi and South Carolina, among other states.
 

 

 

Omama May Retain Three Top Bush Appointees

November 10, 2008

As President-elect Barack Obama prepares to fill top positions for his incoming government, he faces a stubborn reality: Some of the key individuals he will rely upon to tackle the country’s most serious challenges are holdovers from the current administration — a trio of Bush appointees who will likely stay in place for at least the first year or two of Obama‘s presidency.

In confronting the financial crisis and weakening economy, Obama must turn to Ben S. Bernanke, a Republican and former chairman of President Bush’s Council of Economic Advisers, who will lead the Federal Reserve for at least the first year of the new administration.

US Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is seen during the ... 
US Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is seen during the opening of the G-20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting in Sao Paulo, Saturday, Nov. 8, 2008. Brazil’s President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said during his speech the world’s big emerging nations must have a big role in upcoming negotiations to fix the planet’s financial system and prevent another global economic meltdown.(AP Photo/Andre Penner)

In assuming control of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Obama must work with Adm. Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who was appointed by Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates for a two-year term that will end in late 2009 and, by tradition, can expect to be appointed for a second term as the president’s top military adviser. Mullen shares Obama’s belief in focusing more on Afghanistan but is wary of a timeline for withdrawing troops from Iraq.

US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen ... 
Admiral Mullen .(AFP/File/Nicholas Kamm)

And in guarding against terrorist attacks — while correcting what he considers the Bush administration’s excesses — Obama will rely upon FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III, whose term expires in 2011. 

By Alec MacGillis and Ann Scott Tyson
Washington Post Staff Writers
Monday, November 10, 2008; Page A01

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/w
p-dyn/content/article/2008/11/0
9/AR2008110902555.html?hpid=topnews

Conservatives: We Didn’t Just Lose a Race. We Lost Our Bearings.

November 9, 2008

It is not exactly a blinding insight to note that the Republican Party has lost its way. The election of Barack Obama was simply the result of an intellectual decline that began with the start of President Bush‘s reelection campaign in the summer of 2003 and continued unabated, culminating in Gov. Sarah Palin‘s unabashed appeals this year to resentful, blue-collar Republican culture warriors.

By Dov S. Zakheim
The Washington Post
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Palin’s error, John McCain‘s error and the GOP‘s error was to assume that a shrinking slice of the U.S. population could constitute an increasingly large and influential faction of the party. There are simply too few culturally conservative whites to sustain a national political party. At most, that community can contribute to a larger coalition; it cannot constitute that coalition on its own.

How did we lose our bearings so badly? In late 1998, when I joined then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush’s foreign policy team (famously dubbed the “Vulcans”), I was going to work for a man who stood for five key principles that many of us thought would underpin a national Republican majority for decades to come. Last week’s failure stemmed from my party’s failure to hew to these values.

The first and best-known of these was “compassionate conservatism,” exemplified by the insistence that no child be left behind in poverty and despair — a reflection of President Bush’s determination to improve the lot of underprivileged Americans, especially minorities.

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/w
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6/AR2008110603000.html

Say it Isn’t So, Joe: Lieberman May Join GOP Senate Caucus

November 7, 2008

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell is talking to Connecticut independent Sen. Joe Lieberman about the possibility of Lieberman caucusing with the GOP.

Lieberman’s affiliation with Democrats is up in the air. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada, angered by Lieberman’s support of Republican John McCain for president, is considering yanking Lieberman’s chairmanship of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee as punishment.

By ANDREW MIGA, Associated Press Writer

Independent Senator Joseph Lieberman makes a statement following ... 
Independent Senator Joseph Lieberman makes a statement following a meeting with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Capitol Hill in Washinton, DC. Emboldened by their electoral triumph, Democratic lawmakers look set to launch into a mountain of urgent business pushing ahead with new legislation including a fresh economic stimulus bill.(AFP/Getty Images/Brendan Hoffman)

Lieberman and Reid met Thursday to discuss Lieberman’s options, including possible committee and subcommittee posts for him. Those talks are ongoing.

A Lieberman aide, who requested anonymity because the talks are confidential, said Friday that Lieberman and McConnell, R-Ky., have spoken in recent days about the possibility of Lieberman joining the GOP conference. McConnell spokesman Don Stewart would only confirm that the two men have had recent discussions.

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081107/ap_on_go_co/lieberman_
republicans;_ylt=ApFV9TdCaUvLK3fZ19m9SzCs0NUE

The GOP Still Has a Pulse….But McCain’s loss was sterile, containing no seeds of intellectual rebirth….

November 6, 2008

By George F. Will
The Washington Post
Thursday, November 6, 2008; Page A21

Graciously conceding as vice president in 1980, Walter Mondale spoke of voters wielding “their staggering power.” This year’s energized electorate did that, thereby proving, among other things, that bad governance is good for turnout, a fact that should give pause to people who think high rates of voting are unambiguous indicators of civic health.
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In 2000, George W. Bush won 11 million (29 percent) more votes than Bob Dole won in 1996; in 2004, Bush won 11.6 million (23 percent) more than in 2000. This year the Republican surge receded. It is difficult running against Washington while one’s party controls the presidency. And given that the morning news on Election Day was that car sales and manufacturing activity were at their lowest levels in nearly 20 years in October, the evening news was unsurprising.

Although John McCain‘s loss was not as numerically stunning as the 1964 defeat of Barry Goldwater, who won 16 fewer states and 122 fewer electoral votes than McCain seems to have won as of this writing, Tuesday’s trouncing was more dispiriting for conservatives. Goldwater’s loss was constructive; it invigorated his party by reorienting it ideologically. McCain’s loss was sterile, containing no seeds of intellectual rebirth….

Barry Goldwater
Above: Barry Goldwater

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/w
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For Republicans: Could Have Been Worse

November 5, 2008

If Republicans are searching — Reagan-style — for the pony in the pile of manure, perhaps they can find it in this: The double-whammy wipeout many of them were expecting didn’t materialize on Election Night.
Yes, Barack Obama crushed John McCain in the presidential race. But Democrats seem destined to fall well short of the filibuster-proof, 60-vote majority they wanted in the Senate, and Republicans have won a slew of House races they were braced to lose. 

Jim VandeHei, Tim Grieve, Politico

While never quite predicting it, Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee chief Charles Schumer of New York said late last month that 60 was “possible.” In the House, Democratic operatives and leadership types had their hopes set on a 30-seat pickup and thought they might get to 40 if everything broke their way.

It didn’t.

The Senate road to 60 was supposed to run through Alaska, but the morning after found Republican Sen. Ted Stevens holding onto a slim lead over Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich — despite the fact that Stevens was convicted last week on seven federal felony counts.

Minnesota Republican Sen. Norm Coleman worried that his vote on the $700 billion bailout would cost him the election, but it hasn’t, yet; he claimed victory over Al Franken, but the margin was so small that a recount is mandated under state law. In Oregon, Gordon Smith — the quintessential endangered moderate Republican — may yet lose his seat, but he’s leading at the moment. Roger Wicker dodged the wave in Mississippi; Saxby Chambliss looks like a survivor in Georgia; and Mitch McConnell is not Tom Daschle.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., delivers remarks during an election ... 
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., delivers remarks during an election night rally in Phoenix Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2008. Looking on at right is wife Cindy McCain.(AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

On the House side, Alaska Rep. Don Young — left for dead by just about everyone, including his governor, Sarah Palin — somehow managed to win reelection. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) saw roughly a million dollars pour into her opponent’s campaign after she went McCarthy on Chris Matthews and urged the news media to investigate whether members of Congress were “pro-American”; she won anyway. Seemingly vulnerable Republican Reps. Lee Terry of Nebraska, John Shadegg of Arizona and Mario Diaz-Balart and Lincoln Diaz-Balart of Florida all won new terms in Congress.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/15318

First Five Things New President Needs to Do

November 3, 2008

Whatever else waits inside the protective cocoon that the Secret Service will erect quickly around the 44th president on Tuesday night, there isn’t much to read on the topic of How To Lead The Country Now. Nor is there any crystal case on the hall table at Blair House which reads, “Break Glass In Event of Collecting 270 Electoral Votes.” And despite what you might imagine after seeing those Nicholas Cage National Treasure movies, there is no secret binder of special instructions awaiting the president-elect in the National Archives.

Blair House is the official state guest house for the President of the United States.

Blair House

 

And yet in 24 hours, either Barack Obama or John Mccain will quickly put several years of work behind them and turn to taking over the most powerful government on earth – and at the moment, among the most fiscally distressed.

 

So what does the winner do first?

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/time/20081103/us_time
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From Time Magazine