This Week on American Radio Journal: John Fund Talks Presidential Race


Radio Program Schedule for the week of March 28, 2015 – April 3, 2015

This week on Lincoln Radio Journal:

  • Eric Boehm has news headlines from PAIndependent.com
  • David Taylor has a Capitol Watch interview with State Representative Stephen Bloom about ending seniority when determining teacher lay-offs
  • Lowman Henry has a Town Hall Commentary on why the GOP needs to do a better job of messaging

This week on American Radio Journal:

  • Lowman Henry talks with John Fund of the National Review about U.S. Senator Ted Cruz’ entry into the presidential race
  • Andy Roth of the Club for Growth has the Real Story on the GOP and federal spending
  • Eric Boehm and Art Kane have a Watchdog Radio Report on the Small Business Administration giving loans to big business
  • Col. Frank Ryan, USMC (Ret.) has anAmerican Radio Journal commentary on the dangers of deflation

Visit the program web sites for more information about air times. There, you can also stream live or listen to past programs!

http://www.lincolnradiojournal.com

http://www.americanradiojournal.com

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From Perception to Reality


There is an old saying in political circles that “perception is reality.”  Like many old saws there is a lot of truth behind that saying.  Perception is driven by messaging.  It is not necessarily the best policy that prevails, but the policy that benefits from the most effective messaging.  And effective messaging depends on sound arguments, superior strategy and a capable messenger.

Democrats and the GOP have arrived at a split decision when it comes to effective messaging in political campaigns.  Republicans have decimated Democrats at the legislative level.  In congress the GOP holds solid majorities in both chambers.  In the state legislature Republican majorities are at or near historic levels.  The executive branch is a different story. President Obama’s oratorical skills have laid waste to hapless GOP nominees.  Former Governor Tom Corbett was never able to effectively explain his policies to voters, paving the way for a Democratic victory.

Elections behind us, the task now turns to governing.  This is where the outcome of the messaging battle becomes more one-sided.  Congressional Republican leaders have been totally ineffective.  They have squandered their numeric majority by being strategically out-maneuvered, and are losing the perception war.

Despite the fact President Obama’s executive orders relative to illegal immigrants were ruled unconstitutional by a federal judge, and polls showing public opposition to his actions, the Republican congressional majority was unsuccessful in defunding the agencies tasked with implementing that policy.  Why?  They allowed Democrats to spin the defunding as a shutdown of the Department of Homeland Security.  In fact only a couple of small agencies within the DHS would have been affected.  Thus the debate changed from illegal immigration to national security. Congressional Republicans were backed into a corner, caved in, and gave the President a victory.

Now unfolding is a fight over the confirmation of Loretta Lynch as U.S. Attorney General.  Republicans have legitimate concerns relative to her interpretation of the constitution.  But, they have allowed Democrats to portray their opposition as sexist, or racist by opposing the confirmation of an African-American woman.  It was entirely predictable Democrats would play the race and “war on women” cards, but the GOP was unprepared to counter that message.  In the end, a woman who believes the President can effectively re-write the U.S. Constitution will likely be confirmed as Attorney General.

Here in Penn’s Woods the GOP has historically been equally inept at countering executive messaging.  Former Governor Ed Rendell was a master at backing legislative Republicans into a corner, picking off a couple of stragglers at the back of the herd, and winning enough votes for his budgets and policies.

Now, however, there is a new cast of characters in Harrisburg.  Governor Tom Wolf has opted to follow the Obama model and tack far to the Left in his first budget proposal.  New leadership is at the helm of both the House and Senate GOP and they represent caucuses far more conservative than those in office during the Rendell years.

Democrats have already begun spinning their message.  Rick Bloomingdale, president of the state AFL-CIO penned an op-ed calling Governor Wolf’s new budget progressive, conjuring up images of John Fitzgerald Kennedy daring us to be great.  This despite the fact working families will pay significantly higher taxes under Wolf’s budget proposals which amount to nothing either new or progressive, but are little more than a continuation of Rendell-era tax and spend policies.

The ball is now in the GOP’s court.  Republican legislative leaders must shed the yoke of the Corbett Administration’s failure to communicate and become effective advocates for a more responsible approach to governing.  Republicans have proposals that are time-tested, proven governing policies.  The challenge now is to effectively communicate that message and to stand strong against a governor – and mainstream news media – determined to spin false perception into reality.

(Lowman S. Henry is Chairman & CEO of the Lincoln Institute and host of the weekly Lincoln Radio Journal.  His e-mail address is lhenry@lincolninstitute.org.)

Permission to reprint is granted provided author and affiliation are cited.

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This Week on Lincoln Radio Journal: Brad Bumsted Updates Kane Controversy


Radio Program Schedule for the week of March 21 – March 27, 2015

This week on American Radio Journal:

  •  Lowman Henry talks with Jim Phillips of the Heritage Foundation about the impact of the Israeli elections
  • Andy Roth of the Club for Growth has the Real Story behind the resignation of Congressman Aaron Schock
  • Eric Boehm and Tori Richards have a Watchdog Radio Report on how an employee got in trouble for reporting wrongdoing at a Louisiana Veterans Administration hospital
  • Dr. Paul Kengor from the Center for Vision and Values at Grove City College has an American Radio Journal commentary on the latest intolerance of the Left

This week on Lincoln Radio Journal:

  • Eric Boehm has news headlines from PAIndependent.com
  • Lowman Henry talks with Brad Bumsted of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review about developments in the Kathleen Kane scandal
  • Joe Geiger from the First Nonprofit Foundation has Jenny Shifflet from the Sexual Assault Resources & Counseling Center in the Community Benefit Spotlight
  •  Beth Anne Mumford of Americans for Prosperity has a Lincoln Radio Journal commentary on Obamanomics coming to Pennsylvania

Visit the program web sites for more information about air times. There, you can also stream live or listen to past programs!

http://www.lincolnradiojournal.com

http://www.americanradiojournal.com

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This Week on American Radio Journal: Wisconsin Becomes A Right to Work State


Radio Program Schedule for the week of March 14, 2015 – March 20, 2015

This week on American Radio Journal:

  • Lowman Henry talks with Robert Graboyes of the Mercatus Center at George Mason University about the potential impact of King v. Burwell on Obamacare
  • Andy Roth has the Real Story on the new Club for Growth congressional scorecard
  • Eric Boehm and Matt Kittle have a Watchdog Radio Report on Wisconsin becoming the latest Right to Work state
  • Colin Hanna of Let Freedom Ring, USA has an American Radio Journal commentary on the U.S. Senate’s right of advice and consent on treaties

This week on Lincoln Radio Journal:

  • Eric Boehm has news headlines from PAIndependent.com
  • Matthew Brouillette of the Commonwealth Foundation and Neal Lesher from the PA Chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business have a Capitol Watch look at Governor Tom Wolf’s proposed state budget
  • Lowman Henry has a Town Hall Commentary on the governor’s fairy tale budget

Visit the program web sites for more information about air times. There, you can also stream live or listen to past programs!

http://www.lincolnradiojournal.com

http://www.americanradiojournal.com

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Of Rainbows and Unicorns


unicorn and rainbowOnce upon a time in the woods of Penn the benevolent overseer of the land wished to bestow upon his subjects many favors.  Believing in the superior wisdom of his court, he set out to do away with the evil forces that allowed some to rise above others.  To do so he needed more treasure, so he pledged to take from the rich and give to the poor.  But alas, he soon found there were not enough rich to supply the bounty he promised, so he began taking even from the hard working peasants.

And a great sadness descended upon the land.  The benevolent overseer stroked his beard and decreed his populace suffered from a lack of self-esteem.  If only his subjects would think more highly of themselves they would gladly offer up more taxes to the kingdom.  But, upon finding they too would have to render unto the overseer part of their own meager fortune, a great restlessness occurred among the masses.

Seeing this, the knights of the legislature sprang into action and vowed to lead the people to the land of lower taxes and less government.  They promised easier access to wine and liquor to restore the kingdom’s sagging spirits.   And they vowed the government would get out of the way and let people work hard and keep more of their shekels for their own families.

Thus did a great battle take shape over the destiny of his kingdom.

“I will lead you to the land of glittering rainbows and prancing unicorns,” claimed the benevolent overseer.

“We love you!” shouted the scribes and town criers.

“We can’t afford it!” wailed the wage earners.

“We will come to your rescue!” pledged the knights of the legislature.

And the fight commenced.

Governor Tom Wolf has put his first budget on the table. It is a complete redesign of the state’s tax paradigm, with the end result being a $4.6 billion increase in state spending.  He calls his budget progressive and a fresh start for Pennsylvania.  Republicans who control both houses of the General Assembly call it “dead on arrival.”  Many adjectives have been used by the media to describe the spending plan.  I like the term “fairy tale.”

It is a fairy tale because Governor Wolf’s proposals completely ignore the reality of the political situation in Harrisburg.  Even with complete control of the governor’s office and the legislature Republicans were unable to come to grips with pension reform, liquor privatization, and a systemic budget deficit.  As a result of last November’s election, the General Assembly has become more Republican and more conservative and the Governor’s office has been transformed into a virtual Left wing think tank.

For reasons too numerous to detail here, Pennsylvania state government is one that makes change incrementally.  Bold, sweeping action of any type on any issue happens rarely and then only when there is some level of agreement between factions of the two political parties.  Currently, Democrats are a unified and unbending block, and the capitulation wing of the Republican caucus has been rendered impotent by the sheer number of more conservative members elected in recent election cycles.

As if this were not enough of a prescription for gridlock, the Governor has opted to double down on his so-called progressive agenda. The only possible outcome is an extended period of confrontation.   This will happen because neither side will be able to back down without paying a hefty political price.  The governor is beholden to labor unions and will block Republican efforts to address budgetary cost drivers like public employee pensions.  Across the aisle, Republicans enjoy their current large majorities because of conservative legislators sent to Harrisburg to cut spending and prevent tax hikes.

By making his opening bid confrontation rather than compromise Governor Wolf has created a climate in which acrimony and gridlock will flourish.  That is unless one or both sides abandons the constituencies which elected them to office.  That could happen; if you believe in fairy tales.

(Lowman S. Henry is Chairman & CEO of the Lincoln Institute and host of the weekly Lincoln Radio Journal.  His e-mail address islhenry@lincolninstitute.org.)

 

Permission to reprint is granted provided author and affiliation are cited.

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This Week on Lincoln Radio Journal: Leo Knepper Talks the Wolf Budget


Radio Program Schedule for the week of March 7 – March 13, 2015

This week on Lincoln Radio Journal:

  • Eric Boehm has news headlines from PAIndependent.com
  • Lowman Henry has a Newsmaker interview with Leo Knepper from the Citizens Alliance of Pennsylvania about Governor Tom Wolf’s proposed tax and spending increases
  • Eric Montarti and Frank Gamrat have an Allegheny Institute Report on the impact of the proposed extraction tax on natural gas
  • Beth Anne Mumford has a Lincoln Radio Journal commentary on Governor Wolf’s desire to improve the state’s self-esteem

This week on American Radio Journal:

  • Lowman Henry talks with Lewis Uhler of the National Tax Limitation Committee about a proposed constitutional amendment requiring a balanced federal budget
  • Andy Roth of the Club for Growth has the Real Story behind the GOP cave-in on funding President Obama’s amnesty orders
  • Eric Boehm and Mark Lagerkvist have a Watchdog Radio Report on state employees reaping huge pensions
  • Col. Frank Ryan, USMC (Retired) has an American Radio Journal commentary on the importance of a nation’s core values

Visit the program web sites for more information about air times. There, you can also stream live or listen to past programs!

http://www.lincolnradiojournal.com

http://www.americanradiojournal.com

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This Week on American Radio Journal: Colin Hanna Wants to Sunset the Tax Code


Radio Program Schedule for the week of February 28, 2015 – March 6, 2015

This week on American Radio Journal:

  • Lowman Henry talks with Colin Hanna of Let Freedom Ring, USA about a proposal to sunset the U.S. tax code
  • Andy Roth of the Club for Growth has the Real Story on key dates for congressional action this year
  • Eric Boehm talks with Aloysius Hogan of the Competitive Enterprise Institute for a Watchdog Radio Report on whether labor unions are worth the expense to workers
  • Dr. Paul Kengor of the Center for Vision & Values at Grove City College has an American Radio Journal commentary on the optimism of Ronald Reagan

This week on Lincoln Radio Journal:

  • Eric Boehm has news headlines from PAIndependent.com
  • David Taylor from the PA Manufacturers Association and Matthew Brouillette of the Commonwealth foundation talk about the resignation of State Treasurer Rob McCord and corruption in Pennsylvania
  • Lowman Henry has a Town Hall Commentary on why the GOP should not fear a long Presidential primary season.

Visit the program web sites for more information about air times. There, you can also stream live or listen to past programs!

http://www.lincolnradiojournal.com

http://www.americanradiojournal.com

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