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Mitt and My Boy

March 2, 2007 | By | One Comment


The Dude was with us at CPAC today as the youngest blogger on the scene. He snagged an interview with Mitt Romney. . . and gives us Mitt’s take on bloggers vs. the mainstream media here.

UPDATE: Here’s the Dude blogging down the row from Captain Ed and Michelle Malkin.


R to L: The Dude from Panzer Commander, John Tabin from The American Spectator, Michelle Malkin, Ed Morrissey at Captain’s Quarters.

Giuliani Getting Rock Star Welcome

March 2, 2007 | By | One Comment

Cross-post from FRC Blog:

He’s speaking now to a standing-room only crowd in the Regency Ballroom here at the Omni-Shoreham. I’m in the exhibit hall where there are at least 3 big-screen televisions with crowds jammed around them watching intently.

He’s getting a rock stars reception.

He started off slow and seemed nervous. And also almost immediately launched into the “What I Learned From Ronald Reagan” schtick.

He’s concluding now . . . without having said one word about social issues.

Sam Brownback at NRB

February 18, 2007 | By | No Comments

Senator Sam Brownback

For some reason, there seem to be a few politicians here at NRB this year. Sam Brownback was greeting attendees standing just outside the door as the opening General Session concluded. A friend attended a reception held in his honor earlier in the evening and she reported back that the room was full to capacity.

Mitt Romney is slated to be here this afternoon; tomorrow, John McCain.

Update 21 Feb 2007: see Randy Thomas who was also at NRB. Is he an Ex-Gay for Pay as Pam Spaulding claims?

NRI: Charles Murray

January 28, 2007 | By | No Comments

If you want to know how to construct a conservative agenda, let’s look back to the last time we were successful.

Ronald Reagan. (Ah, I’m going to like this talk.)

What did the Gipper say? “Government is not the solution, it’s the problem”


How many Presidents since then have been willing to say that?

How many of the candidates now running will be willing to say that?

I think none, says Murray.

When was the next time conservatives were successful? The Contract with America.

Many, he notes, attributed the success of that lower-government agenda to clever packaging.

But it wasn’t packaging, it was the substance.

National Review Institute: James Woolsey

January 28, 2007 | By | No Comments

I’m not usually that interested in energy policy, and man, I haven’t had any caffeine yet this morning. So we were headed out to get some Earl Grey, when Jim Woolsey made this comment and I just had to turn the computer back on:

“If you want to know who is paying for the other side in the War on Terror, next time you are at the gas pump, filling up your tank, turn the rear-view mirror. . . and look at yourself in it. That’s who is paying for our opponents in this war. (paraphrased.)”

Hmm. We’re about to get testy this rainy morning.

National Review Institute: Mike Huckabee

January 28, 2007 | By | One Comment

Mike Hucakabee Speaking to National Review

Mike Huckabee is an instantly likeable speaker. As I walked in after driving through rainy, Sunday morning Washington DC streets, he was telling a story about getting a “whuppin'” from his dad when he was a kid. He made the point that when you get a whuppin’, you need to know why. . . and you need to avoid doing whatever it was that got you the whuppin’ again. Republicans, he said, need to understand why they got a whuppin’ in November.


To my surprise, the media is back this morning. There are at least three cameras in the back covering the speech. Not as many as for Romney last night, but still, a good turnout.

Jack and I met him yesterday afternoon and talked about running marathons. He ran the New York Marathon last year while injured and we compared notes on the pain of crossing mile twenty. . . and gutting it out to mile 26.2. He might get my vote just for being a marathoner. It’s a nice analogy for a presidential race that’s for sure.

So, interesting that he is talking about health care now, from a very different perspective. Story of Starbucks (owner?) who told Huckabee that he spends more on health care each year than he does in buying coffee for the entire nationwide franchise. Amazing. Told the good joke about NFL football — 22 people on the field who need a rest, and 70,000 people who desperately need some exercise.

Catching up a little — he’s just been interrupted by the largest round of applause yet. Jack tells me he just said that Steve Forbes is right and that we need a flat tax.

National Review Institute: Robert George, Maggie Gallagher, and Ed Whelan

January 27, 2007 | By | No Comments

Liveblogging a Conservative All-Star Lineup!

Robert George: “Truth is luminously powerful.”

Making the case that “each of us once an embryo.” Incrementalism, as a strategy, can be entirely honorable. As long as it isn’t a euphemism for surrender. Small victories can help to get public opinion moving in the right direction. The debate around “Born Alive” survivors of abortion and “partial birth abortion” have focused attention on the realities of abortion and that it truly is a child, and not a choice. Sonography, also showing the “wondrously human life of the child in the womb.”

The movement must work to make high-quality sonography more available. Pro-abortion movement, of course, is fighting this. Why? “Might hurt the fetus.”

Much appreciative laughter.

Abortion is an issue of profound moral significance. But another shadow looms: biotechnology. No one should be against the advance of technology. In the long run, the issue is not about spare embryos, the real issue is the pratice of creating human embryos for cloning. There are not nearly enough spare embryos for the uses scientists want to put them to. Hundreds of thousands will soon be needed. In vitro embryos are products of the genetic lottery. They aren’t a match of the patient in need. Cloning is a match.

Legislation in NJ considers funding fetal farming. Which is where all this leads.

Most Americans are repulsed by the idea of gestating a baby and harvesting it. At least for now.

(Editorial comment: that is an important caveat!)

We should all support stem cell research but insist that human life not be destroyed in the process.

Turning to marriage: conservatives should be clear about why it is important. Marriage is a pre-political institution. It is not created by the law; it is recognized by the law.

There is a reason all cultures recognize and regulate marriage. Governments rely on famlies to produce something they cannot produce: decent, upright citizens.

Where the family fades, the state will enter. Everyone suffers when the family fails. Someone has to pay for increased public services and that someone is the taxpayer.

National Review Institute: Panel on Religious Conservatives

January 27, 2007 | By | No Comments

We’re spending the day at the National Review Institute gathering. Great fun — every time you turn around there’s another old friend and someone you’d like to meet as a new friend.

The panel on religious conservatives just concluded, featuring Ralph Reed debating Ryan Sager, a columnist for the New York Post who wrote a book called The Elephant in the Room Evangelicals, Libertarians, and the Battle to Control the Republican Party.

Ralph acquitted himself well, except for the cringe-worthy moment when he mentioned the role of corruption in November’s election. . . might be a topic/word he would want to avoid.

The key point in Sager’s presentation was his comment that evangelicals are “on the wrong side of the biggest civil rights issue of our time.”

This is the framing of the same-sex marriage issue that is the challenge confronting marriage defenders today. The Human Rights Campaign (there it is, right in their name!) is steadily gaining ground with their catchphrase: “writing discrimination in the Constitution.” Very disciplined message; very effective.

Jeb Bush coming up at lunch-time. Gingrich was here for breakfast. Mitt Romney tonight at dinner. Huckabee speaking tomorrow.

Tony Perkins’ Response to State of the Union

January 24, 2007 | By | No Comments

“During his State of the Union Address on January 23, 2007, President Bush received applause for his commitment to providing healthcare and for his unwavering words about the war on terror. Unfortunately, on a number of critical issues, the same resolve was missing. . .” More here.

State of the Union: Bush Ignores Family Issues

January 24, 2007 | By | One Comment

state of the union address chart.jpg

This graphic — courtesy of my colleagues at the Family Research Council — says it all.

Check out FRC’s blog for more commentary on the big hole in the heart of the President’s speech. . .