Posts Tagged tea party

This Week on Lincoln Radio Journal: Governor’s Jobs Summit

Radio Program Schedule for the week of August 16, 2014 – August 22, 2014

This week on Lincoln Radio Journal:

  • Eric Boehm has news headlines from
  • David Taylor from the PA Manufacturers Association has a Capitol Watch interview with Pennsylvania Labor & Industry Secretary Julia Hearthway on the upcoming Governor’s Jobs Summit
  • Lowman Henry has a Town Hall Commentary on tough love for Philadelphia city schools

This week on American Radio Journal:

  • Lowman Henry talks with Lori Sanders of the R Street Institute about Rep. Paul Ryan’s plan to overhaul the nation’s anti-poverty programs
  • Andy Roth of the Club for Growth has the Real Story on who won the intramural GOP battle between the establishment and the TEA party
  • Eric Boehm and Matt Kittle have a Watchdog Radio Report on the EPA and Alaska’s proposed Pebble Mine
  • Colin Hanna of Let Freedom Ring, USA has an American Radio Journal commentary on dirty tricks in the Mississippi GOP run-off election for U.S. Senator

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

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Moving the Goal Posts

A football field is 100 yard long.  That makes the 50-yard line the center of the field.  Suppose we were to change the rules and make the football field 120 yards long.  That would make the center of the field the 60-yard line.  Despite changing the center, the 50-yard line is still 50 yards from the goal line even though it is now ten yards away from the middle of the field.

Simply put, we moved the goal posts.

That is what has happened to American politics.  Policies and positions that at one time were considered moderate, are now denounced as extreme.  This is because the field was not lengthened ten yards on each side; rather all 20 yards were added to the Left side of the field making formerly centrist positions seem further to the Right.

Conservatives who espouse low taxes, personal freedom and a strong national defense are now portrayed as the “radical Right,” despite the fact such positions occupied the nation’s mainstream for generations.  The Democratic Party, establishment Republicans and a liberal dominated news media all view it in their best interests to claim the center is now the extreme.

But voters are not buying the argument.

The upset of this year’s primary season was the defeat of U.S. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in Virginia’s 7th congressional district.  It was the first time in history a sitting Republican majority leader lost his own party’s primary.  Many factors contributed to Cantor’s defeat, but the fact is a TEA party conservative put together a message that resonated with voters and despite being massively outspent won the election.

Another incumbent is on the verge of being ousted in Mississippi where long-time U.S. Senator Thad Cochran has been forced into a run-off election by TEA party conservative Chris McDaniel who actually received more votes than Cochran in the first round of balloting. McDaniel has been ahead in polls leading up to the run-off election.

For his part, Cochran has laid waste to establishment claims that TEA party candidates must be defeated in primaries because they suffer from foot-in-mouth disease causing them to lose winnable general elections.  At a recent campaign appearance Cochran claimed he grew up “doing all kinds of indecent things with animals.”  His claims of barnyard exploits proved candidates from all parts of the political spectrum can say stupid things.

Here in Penn’s Woods even Democrats are not buying the progressive spin. In what one Left wing blog termed “the worst Primary night for PA progressives in recent memory,” Democrats nominated a wealthy “one percenter” over more Leftist candidates for governor.  Self-described liberal lion state Senator Daylin Leach finished third in a congressional primary in which the most centrist candidate on the ballot prevailed.  Progressive rising, now fallen star State Representative Erin Molchany lost to an old-line Democrat and State Representative Margo Davidson, a pro-life Democrat defeated her progressive challenger.

The bottom line is this: although the progressive/mainstream Republican/news media echo chamber would have you believe conservative positions are now extreme voters in both parties are, at the ballot box, proving otherwise.  Essentially, both political parties have become disconnected from their grassroots.  Thus the political division in America today is more between those who govern and those who are governed than it is between Republicans and Democrats.

For Republicans this is an opportunity to appeal to Democrats turned-off by their party’s ultra-progressive wing much as Ronald Reagan did in assembling a winning coalition back in the 1980s.  The war establishment Republicans are waging against the GOP’s TEA party base provides a division that can be exploited by Democrats.

With internal strife abundant in both parties, the one which does the best job of minimizing their internal divisions will prevail at the ballot box both in this November’s race for Governor of Pennsylvania and in the 2016 Presidential campaign now getting underway.

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

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

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Haight-Ashbury Meets Wall Street: A Politically Fueled Woodstock?

It is interesting how a dispirit group of malcontents with nothing better to do than hang out on Wall Street all of a sudden are branded by the media as a “national movement.”

The “Occupy Wall Street” protest is the latest incarnation of the Haight-Ashbury gang transported from San Francisco to New York. Loosely gathering under a mutual disdain for the nation’s financial community, the group appears to be a hybrid between Woodstock and a college political science class. The lawlessness and arrests have it tilting more toward the former.

Since the rise of the Tea party movement two years ago the Leftist news media has been looking for a “spontaneous” citizen movement to counter the conservative wave that has swept the country. Thus, they have seized on “Occupy Wall Street” as a counter to the Tea party. It is nothing of the sort. “Occupy Wall Street” is little more than a group gripe session Astro-turfed by the nation’s labor unions which otherwise have lost their reason for being.

The news media’s handling of “Occupy Wall Street” is vastly different than the coverage given to the Tea party movement during its early days. As public revulsion with the big government policies of the new Obama Administration began to surface, the media at first ignored, and then dismissed, the Tea party movement. When the Tea party became too big to ignore it was attacked as a bunch of racist, Right wing nut cases.

And then, the Tea party lifted Scott Brown – a Republican – into the late Teddy Kennedy’s Massachusetts U.S. Senate seat. That began a string of Tea party-inspired electoral victories that culminated in a wave election last November sweeping Republicans into a majority in the U.S. House of Representatives.

All along the way the Left-leaning news media kept searching for a counter to the Tea party. There was a glimmer of hope as a “coffee party” tried, but failed to gain traction. Now, with President Obama looking like a cross between Herbert Hoover and Jimmy Carter, desperation has set in as the liberal agenda faces annihilation in 2012.

Enter a small group of dissidents who decided it would be easier to stage a sit-in on Wall Street than actually go out, get an education and look for jobs. Before long they were joined by the professional protest elements of the Democratic Party’s ultra-Left wing. Dressed as zombies, spouting rhetoric calling for a “change in America’s cosmic consciousness” (don’t ask me what that means), and egged on – in some cases even paid by – union organizers, “Occupy Wall Street” has been built-up by the media as a supposed spontaneous outpouring of Plebian anger aimed at the rich in America.

Now “Occupy Wall Street” protestors are digging in for months of demonstration. Assumedly during those months they won’t be looking for jobs. Tea party activists don’t do that because they actually go to work. And when they aren’t working, the Tea party is busy engaging in the type of political activism – registering voters, learning about the issues, working on campaigns – that actually does bring about real change.

And that is why “Occupy Wall Street” will fail while the Tea party will continue to succeed. This odd-ball collection of anti-war activists, environmental extremists and socialists will never gel because their stock in trade is protest and bluster, not actual work and activism.

Had these protestors approached the situation in a more mature way they might have made a valid point. In fact, they might even have common cause on a number of issues with the Tea party. After all, the Toxic Asset Relief Program (TARP) and subsequent Obama “stimulus” – both of which were massive transfers of taxpayer dollars to the special interests “Occupy Wall Street” is protesting – are also reviled by many in the Tea party movement. The lingering economic recession and unacceptably high national unemployment rate concerns all Americans, regardless of their political persuasion.

The difference, however, comes in the solution. “Occupy Wall Street” seeks the soft Socialist “cure” of redistributing wealth. The Tea party wants to empower individuals to create more wealth. A glance over the pond at Greece and many European nations tells us the redistributionist approach will not work. A look back at the history of our own nation demonstrates an economy based on growth and opportunity results in a higher standard of living for all.

While “Occupy Wall Street” fills the media’s need to cover something other than the Tea party, its patchwork collection of economic and political goals can never and will never work. But, the protesters’ efforts have not been in vain. At least they have really good costumes ready for Halloween.

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