Tag Archive: republican

FDU/ Public Mind Poll Has Clinton Up 10 Nationally

Farleigh Dickinson’s Public Mind Poll has Democrat Hillary Clinton hitting the magical 50% level nationally with a 10 point lead over Republican nominee Donald Trump who sits at a terrible 40%. With Libertarian Gary Johnson and Green Jill Stein included…
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Brat, A Self-Made Phony Yet An Honest Representative of the Right

Hypocrisy, exaggeration and deception are part and parcel of democratic politics, but all lies, I have learned, are not equal, nor should they be received that way. Some lies are much more deceptive, cunning and misleading than others, as are the liars that tell them. A good example is currently winding its way through the web and blogosphere, and it concerns the current darling of the Tea Party, David Brat.

Brat’s unexpected primary victory against Republican Party Bigwig/Congressman Eric Cantor is huge news, and rightfully so. As a Tea Party favorite, Brat’s victory serves as a warning to more moderate Republicans that so-called free market, laissez-faire Tea Party values still hold credence with Republican voters.

The Tea Party and its Republican supporters live in a sort of “way we never were” cloud where America is (or should be) rightfully a white, Christian country comprised of English-speaking hard workers who, in their noble, honest self-sufficiency are not in need, nor desire, any welfare-state handouts like Medicare, Social Security or almost anything else state-sponsored or supported. They see themselves as the once marginalized but now awakened  “Silent Majority” whose time to stand up – unapologetically so – for American values and identity has arrived. According to Tea Partiers and many Republicans, people who get a “boost” from government programs are cheating an otherwise fair and square system which rewards hard work and honesty with The Good Life.

So wasn’t I surprised when I read that in his official campaign biography, Brat makes an astounding claim:

“[Brat] tested his rural values against the intellectual elite while at Princeton and against the powerful elite at American University.”

Okay, so from a reasonable reader’s perspective, the assertion here is immediately understood. Brat attended college as a sort of noble underdog undergraduate at Princeton University. The image is quite clear of a young conservative man standing up for good American Christian values in the profane, ivy covered halls of Princeton University…perhaps passionately defending the rights of the unborn against the Abortionist professors of that esteemed institution. Perhaps he made an entire U.S. government class gasp when he publicly proclaimed his stance against affirmative action or immigration or on some other hot button issue. So here’s the kicker:

It never happened.

Brat never gained admission to or graduated from Princeton University. He lied. He misrepresented himself and tried to convince his readers, supporters and others that he earned something that he did not.  

In reality, Brat apparently – though I still think this needs to be confirmed – attended Princeton Theological Seminary. Is the seminary geographically located in the town of Princeton? Why yes, it is. Is it known by anyone, past or present, as being part of Princeton University? No, not by a long shot. In fact, its students and graduates either call it by name or refer to it as “PTS.”

This is no small omission, and he shouldn’t get a break on it. America is indeed the land of fudged resumes, and of people reinventing themselves – sometimes twice over. But what we have here is a candidate who represents a movement that, like I mentioned earlier, is obsessed with merit and straightforwardness, and Brat, in his claims, honors neither. He’s a fraud and wannabe. His claims are an insult not just to Princeton alumni, but rather, to any and all of us who ever worked and earned a four-year college degree anywhere. Its especially stinging for those of us burdened with tens of thousands of dollars in college loans that the Tea Party demands we repay regardless of the cost to our families and the national economy. He’s a fake, a phony. He’s pathetic.

But curiously enough, I will concede that Brat is a fine representative of the entire Tea Party movement, and that of the Republican Party as well. Because if you do really believe that you’ve earned everything in your life, and that you owe nothing to your society or nation or community, then you’re about as much as a hypocrite as he is. The truth is that most if not all Americans have received immense benefits, both directly and indirectly, from the various levels of government over the course of their lifetimes. Whether it was attending public school, driving on an interstate highway, breathing in relatively clean air, gaining a benefit from an unadulterated medication, cashing a Social Security/Medicare check or sending an email – we have all proven to be welfare kings and queens. We have all advanced at some point in our lives from the imperfect largesse of the Federal and State governments.

And you don’t need a Princeton degree to figure that one out.  

Emerson Election Fraud

I wish I did not know so much about this story. But I live in Emerson now, and  I just had to write about how bad things have gotten here.

The Good Old Boys in town decided to try to get rid of an honest Councilwoman, who actually asks questions and has some courage to look out for us folks in town.  Republican Danielle DiPaola, comes from a long line of courageous folks. Men in her family earned fame for helping clean up the corrupt Hudson River Waterfront years ago.  

Well, the guys who had other plans for our town wanted to get rid of her and they devised a sneaky (if not dumb and illegal) plot.

Danielle was supposed to be running on the ballot with Republican Elizabeth Garis, who had dutifully got her primary ballot petitions signed.  Poor Elizabeth though, little did she know that the scoundrels in her own party had decided who her running mate would be and after she had hand delivered her signed petitions to the Republican Municipal Chair’s home (Ronald Grifffin), another name was added to her petition.  This act of petition tampering made it look like Elizabeth did not want to run with DiPaola.  

Meanwhile other BLANK signed petitions were filled in with the name of Republican Stephen Paino for the third seat to fill an unexpired term.

Councilwoman DiPaola questioned the legailty of Elizabeth’s tampered petition, which was subsesquently thrown out on a technicality due to the stamp.  

Unlike a lot of Bergen County, Emerson is mostly Republican and it is rare for a Democrat to win here, so these guys were virtually assured winning the election simply by getting on the ballot.

Bear in mind the OTHER Municipal Chair in town is Ferriero friend Willie Ortiz. In the mix of this story is the tale of former Democratic Councilman Ken Hoffman, another honest guy and one not happy with  life under Ortiz’s thumb, he changed parties to Republican and threw his support behind DiPaola (Following this so far?)

No shrinking violet either, Hoffman voiced his suspicion that the culprit here was none other than Borough Attorney Scott Mooney, whose handwriting had matched the extra handwriting on the petitions according to a handwriting expert independently hired by Councilwoman DiPaola at her own expense.   Which is why Mooney promptly sued Hoffman for trying to ruin his reputation.  Mooney is also a prosecutor in Hackensack as well as being Borough attorney.  

Still Unsure

Friday I received the “Sample Ballot” for Tuesday’s primary vote.

As I read it over I was reminded that I am always pained at the abysmal lack of political knowledge I possess about what goes on in the world.

Like some others, I refer to Gov. Christie as “Governor 1%.” And while I would like to embrace Barbara Buono’s gubernatorial strike as a hopeful alternative to Christiecrats, I cannot.  This is primarily due to what I believe is a real-world fact: George Norcross is to NJ politicians what the Koch Brothers are to the GOP, and he has a reported interest in Buono’s candidacy.  In my estimation, that ain’t good.

So what’s a citizen to do?  

There is a name on the ballot I have never heard before, and I don’t know if mea culpas are in order because I have been politically negligent.  The name is Troy Webster, an aide to the anti-establishment Mayor of East Orange.

Google reveals that Webster has a campaign website, an online model of puritan plainess sans facebook or twitter icons.  A video of Webster announcing his candidacy to a modest crowd of friends on youtube reveals a relative lack of NJ Political savvy, a local “up-front-ness” which I find refreshing even if impractical.

A popular maxim makes the claim that if voting really made any difference “they’d” outlaw it.  In recent elections I’ve been afraid to vote outside the box because I’d be “throwing my vote away.”

As I check my email account, I notice that I’ve not received one request for money from Troy Webster.  Like many of us, I receive several requests for political contributions from different sources every day.  

And so, I’m wondering if “impractical” might not be preferable to “savvy.”  I’m wondering if it isn’t time to vote “outside the box.”

Republicans Stuck in A Pothole

promoted by Rosi

When the House GOP refused to take up relief for homeowners, businesses and local government reeling from Hurricane Sandy there was an outcry from the right, left, middle, up, down, around and many other aspirationally prepositional directions. It was stunning to see right wing stalwart Representative Peter King of New York suggest that anyone from NY or NJ (mentioning NJ at all was shocking) donating to Republicans was an idiot.  

Less stunning but still noteworthy was Republican Presidential hopeful Chris Christie attacking House GOP leadership – folks he’ll need to get the nod in 2016 or 2020 – for abandoning his state.  

Not stunning was that former maverick Leonard Lance (NJ-7) barely barked, though he did pose for group photos with people who did. This is a guy sold as a radically independent state Senator, and principled politician.  

But that’s beside the point.  What’s truly shocking is that anyone is surprised that the Republican House leadership refused to provide government help to people in need…

I was going to finish that sentence with “in three Northeastern blue states.”  But they didn’t blow off voting for Sandy relief because we’re Democrats.  Not because we like gay people, or at least think they should be treated as citizens.  Not for opposing stupid wars, supporting entitlements, loving the New Deal and Great Society, etc.

Nope.  They blew off a vote to provide life-saving support to devastated American citizens because they believe government should not do anything.

Joe Kyrillos: (modifier) Republican & Leonard Lance: (adjective) Conservative

Used to be, during the rise of neo-conservatism, that right-wing politicians proudly and directly claimed the identifiers of Republican and conservative. This is when so many voters were still bamboozled by the empty promise of trickle-down economics. Nancy Reagan wore red and Ronnie drove up the nation’s credit card. Before George W. Bush and his chickenhawk handlers war-whooped us all into debt and embarrassed a critical mass of us with avarice and stupidity.

What do we have now from some of New Jersey’s leading Republicans up for office? Now, we get modifiers in front of those right-wing identifiers:

Joe Kyrillos: (“a different kind of”) Republican.

Leonard Lance: (“principled”) conservative.

I find this amusing, and a sign of weakness in their position; a failure of strength in the way both campaigns self-present.

Kyrillos, whose campaign is wholly-dependent on the twin crutches of Chris Christie and Sheldon Adelson, is introduced by his wife Susan as a “different kind of Republican” in this a gauzy, beach-strolling ‘n blue jeans TV spot, playing up her opinion of the candidate as a dad. Now, why should I care that he “sees a world of possibility in our children, Max & Georgia”? I mean, good for the kids. But stop pandering to me. There’s a reason Republicans, including you, have a big gender gap to overcome. We’re smart cookies, and we pay more attention to your voting record than your papa-credentials before we vote. And we do vote. And you, Joe Kyrillos, are not a different kind of Republican. You’re pretty standard issue, and if you’re elected, you’re just party-disciplined enough to take your congressional marching orders from the GOP’s deep-tread antagonism toward women. No thanks.

I’ll leave most of the analysis of Leonard Lance’s campaign to others. A member of my household is campaign manager of Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula’s congressional campaign against Lance (a DCCC “Emerging Race”). But I will say Lance’s current TV spot features a lot of shots of wife Heidi standing by his side, speaking of pandering when your voting record sucks. Lance’s primary ad featured crutch Christie, plus a roster of tea party-approved and other GOP demi-stars. His 2012 (and 2010) primary challenger was tea partier David Larsen. The Leonard Lance of his legislature days posed himself as a moderate (he wasn’t really). Congressional Leonard Lance is a garden-variety GOP lock-stepper who has sold his soul and lowered himself to neo-conservative levels to try and stay in Congress. (Don’t even take our word on it, the bible on this is The Curious Transformation of N.J. Congressman Leonard Lance, by Tom Moran in Star-Ledger).

As you can see, a lot of “modifying” going on.