Posts Tagged ‘Mitt Romney’

Michigan Primary Prediction and Statistical Analysis

February 28, 2012

It’s been a while since I updated this, but I figured this would be fun.  I made my primary prediction for Michigan late last night and here’s the breakdown I went with:

Santorum – 40%
Romney – 39%
Paul – 11%
Gingrich – 9%
Others – 1%

Then today, I decided to look at the recent polls for Michigan.  The first poll I went with was starting on February 12, since anything before this wouldn’t factor in Santorum’s triple win in Missouri, Colorado, and Minnesota.  I made a scatter plot of Santorum – Romney:

I then added 2 trendlines. The first one (red) was a linear trendline which I knew wouldn’t be reflective of Santorum’s momentum recently. I plotted the second (green) second order polynomial trendline, which did a decent job at predicting his momentum, but I noticed that the relatively low lead he had right after his triple win was skewing the results a bit lower.  Those polls are so old that they don’t correctly account for what’s going on now with just a simple second order polynomial.  So I put in the third (purple) trendline, which was a third order polynomial.  This correctly factored in his slow start to gain momentum, but looks like it drastically overestimates it at the end.

So I thought, how can I better examine Santorum’s momentum.  I took out the polls right after Santorum’s triple-win, which I thought weren’t representative of the momentum he gained, then lost, and regained, and got this plot, with the red representing a linear trendline, and the green representing a second order polynomial:

This plot matched up almost perfectly with my predictions (which I wasn’t expecting it to turn out just like that), but I think accurately portrays the general momentum Santorum has had since his triple win.

Ultimately, gauging the momentum a candidate has is hard to do, but I think the second order polynomial in the second graph accurately portrays Santorum’s momentum.  Ultimately, both of these models could end up being wrong, and there’s no perfect algorithm to predict voters, but the results of my second model, I believe, accurately portray Santorum’s momentum, and cement my confidence that Santorum will have a close victory over Mitt Romney.

Done Predicting,

Ranting Republican

Mike Huckabee Endorses Mike Cox (R-MI) for Governor

March 3, 2010

Well, in an interesting move that I’m still trying to figure out, former Governor and Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee (R-AR) has endorsed Attorney General Mike Cox for Governor.  Here’s a copy of the press release that I received today.  I’ll give my analysis after the press release:

Mike Huckabee Endorses Mike Cox in 2010 Race for Governor

Huckabee: “Mike Cox best described as Michigan’s Pro-Life, Pro-gun conservative candidate for Governor”

     LIVONIA, MI— One of America’s most respected conservative leaders, former Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee today formally endorsed Mike Cox in the 2010 race for Governor.

     “Mike Cox is best described as Michigan’s Pro-Life, Pro-gun conservative candidate for Governor,” said Huckabee. “Mike is an innovative, strong leader who is not afraid to take a stand on an important issue. He is opposed to the runaway tax and spend policies we are seeing at the federal and state levels.”

     Cox’s message of less spending, lower taxes and reformed government has set him apart in Michigan’s race for Governor. Cox recently drew a crowd of 1,200 families, activists and community leaders to a Rally for Michigan’s Future in Oakland County and hundreds more last weekend to the Grand Opening of his campaign headquarters in Livonia.

     “Mike Huckabee is one of our nation’s most respected leaders,” said Cox. “Mike Huckabee continues to fight for more liberty and less government. I am proud to have his support and am honored he is standing beside me as we fight to bring jobs back to Michigan.”

     Cox announced Huckabee’s endorsement first today via social networking websites like Facebook, Twitter, U-Stream and conservative bloggers across Michigan.

     Huckabee has been called an early frontrunner for the 2012 Republican Presidential nomination scoring well in many polls including last November’s Gallup-USA Today poll. Mike Huckabee polled ahead of President Obama as recently as January 2010.

     “Mike Cox has also fought hard to protect Second Amendment rights in Michigan,” Huckabee continued. “I am proud to endorse Mike Cox for Governor of Michigan.”

     Cox is the only candidate for Governor to release a comprehensive 92 point plan to put Michigan back to work, including proposals to cut billions of dollars out of the state budget, cut taxes on job providers and families by $2 billion, make government more transparent, reform education, and revitalize our cities. The plan is available at www.mikecox2010.com. The Mike Cox 2010 Campaign also recently announced that it raised $1.8 million in 2009 – with roughly $1.5 million cash on hand. The funds came from over 2,500 individual donors – with roughly 1,000 of the contributors donating less than $100.

     For more information on Mike Cox’s campaign for Governor, please visit www.mikecox2010.com or call the campaign office today at 734-525-5035.

     About Gov. Mike Huckabee: Prior to his 2008 presidential campaign, Huckabee served as the 44th Governor of Arkansas from 1996-2007 and as the state’s lieutenant governor from 1993-1996. As a young adult, he served as a pastor and denominational leader. He became the youngest president ever of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention, the largest denomination in Arkansas. Huckabee’s efforts to improve his own health have received national attention. He is the author of 6 books, the most recent being “Do the Right Thing,” which spent its first 7 weeks of release in the top ten of the New York Times Bestseller list. He is currently the host of the top rated weekend hit “HUCKABEE” on the Fox News Channel, and is heard three times daily across the nation on the “Huckabee Report.” Huckabee and his wife, Janet, live in North Little Rock, Arkansas. They have three grown children: John Mark, David and Sarah.

#30#

Alright, so my analysis… this honestly confused me when I saw it.  I’ve been wondering for the past few hours why a Presidential candidate would jump into the gubernatorial race here in Michigan.

One thing is for sure, this is by far the biggest endorsement that I can think of for any of the current gubernatorial candidates.  The announcement definitely gives Cox more momentum than he already had (which is quite a bit – he’s been battling Congressman Pete Hoekstra, with both of them leading the polls at one time or another).  But will it help him in the long run?

In the 2008 Presidential Primaries, Huckabee got 16.08% of the vote in Michigan, with Romney winning with 38.92%, and McCain coming in second with 29.68%.  Huckabee did worst in Cox’s area of the state, but better in central and western Michigan, so that might help Cox a little bit, by diversifying his support.  So, I’d say that the best endorsement to get would’ve been Romney’s but Huckabee is still a major player in the conservative movement, and as of now, polling well for 2012.

Now, another thing that I thought about was Huckabee’s stances on law and order issues.  One of the major problems I’ve always had with Huckabee (don’t get me wrong – I like the guy) has been his stances on law and order issues as governor.  He issued a lot of pardons and commutations as governor of Arkansas (most notably, the recent scandal with Maurice Clemons who shot and killed 4 police officers in 2009).  Being an Attorney General, I’m not sure if Huckabee’s endorsement is the best thing for Mike Cox’s law and order record, but I may be reading into this more than I should.

Huckabee’s endorsement will help Cox with social conservatives, a group that may be hesitant to vote for him because of his affair back in 2005, but I think most people have (rightfully) moved on from that issue.  But the pro-life movement in Michigan is very strong, and Huckabee’s endorsement will go a long way for Cox when it comes to social issues.  Then again, with the current emphasis on the economy, social issues probably won’t be the deciding factor in who voters do vote for (although in the Republican primary, it’ll be more of an issue than in the general election).

But the most interesting thing about this, and I’ve been wondering this all day, is why would a Presidential candidate endorse a gubernatorial candidate in a primary race?  There’s 3 answers that I think it could possibly be:

  1. Huckabee has given up running for President (at least for 2012), and is going to focus on his PAC and getting Republicans elected around the country.
  2. He’s gambling that Cox will end up winning, and will help him here in Michigan in 2012.
  3. Huckabee is already counting Michigan as lost to him in 2012, and isn’t afraid of losing a few potential delegates by angering non-Cox supporters.

Option 2 and 3 make the most sense to me.  I don’t think he’s given up on running, but I don’t think Huckabee can win Michigan in 2012 if Romney runs.  Romney’s biggest competition here in Michigan was McCain, and without McCain, I think Romney would’ve gotten close to, if not more than, 50% of the vote in 2008.

He may not be publicly saying it, but I don’t think he plans on winning Michigan.  My guess would be that he’s hoping Cox will bring in some supporters (and money) in 2012, so that can offset the voters that Huckabee may lose because he’s supporting Cox.

But no matter what the outcome is for Huckabee, this definitely gives Cox a decent boost for now.  Whether or not is does anything for him come August 3rd, we’ll just have to wait and see.

Done Analyzing,

Ranting Republican

Analysis of Mitt Romney’s Speech to the RNC

September 4, 2008

Alright.  I’ll now be analyzing former Governor Mitt Romney’s (R-MA) speech to the RNC:

He’s talking about respecting the people there for the views they have.  He’s talking about Washington looking at the elites from the East Coast, such as liberal newspapers, etc….  “If America really wants to change, it’s time to look for the sun in the west, because it’s about to rise and shine from Arizona and Alaska!”  That was a pretty cool imagery – and it got a good response from the crowd.

He’s talking about the DNC speakers talking about change.  He’s talking about the government being liberal: Supreme Court being liberal, giving rights to terrorist prisoners, stopping off shore drilling and nuclear power plants, making inflation rise.  “We need change all right: change from a liberal Washington to a conservative Washington!”  Again, that was a pretty good quote, and he’s now reaching out to the conservative base, which is the part of the party that  Lieberman didn’t appeal to, so they’re hitting all of the members of the party as well as other people watching.

Talking about throwing out the big government liberals.  Now he’s talking about his history in the private sector, and that liberals don’t know how to deal with economic issues.  He’s basically saying that we have a good economy because of the work of the American people.

“We strengthen our people and our economy when we preserve and promote opportunity.  Opportunity is what lets hope become reality.”  Now he’s talking about when opportunity expands – talking about good educations, talking about schools and homes that are moral homes, free from pornography, drugs, etc….  “America cannot long lead the family of nations if we fail the family here at home.”  And again, that’s a great quote that appeals to the Religious Right conservatives.  He’s shoring up the party base, something that on his own, McCain would have a hard time doing.

“It’s time to stop the spread of government dependency and fight it like the poison that it is.  You know, it’s time for the party of big ideas, not the party of Big Brother.”  And that appeals to the economic conservatives – and it helps McCain look better on economics, an area that he won’t appear strong on his own.

Now he’s talking about the housing crisis and gas prices.  He’s talking about the Democrats wanting to take the wrong course, but we should take the right course, the same course that Reagan took over 20 years ago.

“The right course is to rein in government spending, lower taxes, take a weed whacker to excessive regulation and mandates, put a stop to tort windfalls, and to stand up to the tyrannosaurus appetite of government unions.”  And that’s going to hurt with the moderates, but this is where Palin comes in to help.  Her and her husband were union members, so that connection is going to sway over some moderate union members who are undecided as of now.

Talking about pursuing every source of energy security, including drilling for oil off our shores.  “I have one more recommendation for energy conservation: let’s keep Al Gore’s private jet on the ground.”  That was a great quote.

He’s talking about Democrats not talking about the threat from radical Muslims at their convention last week.  Now he’s talking about good an evil, and McCain said (at the Saddleback forum) “hit the nail on head: radical violent Islam is evil and he will defeat it.”  That’s another great quote there.  That really appeals to the military families and people who are mostly concerned with national security.  Although, this is an area that McCain really doesn’t need help in.

And the crowd has now gone into chanting, “USA.”

“People in our party prefer straight talk to politically correct talk.”  Again, another great quote, showing that Democrats are spinning the truth, and that McCain is telling the truth.

He’s now talking about McCain and Palin strengthening the economy, and not retreating in the face of evil extremism.

“Just like you, there’s never been a day when I was not proud to be an American.”  And the crowd has gone into chanting “USA” again.  “We Americans inherited the greatest nation in the history of the earth.  It’s our burden and our privilege to preserve it, to renew its spirit, so that its noble past is prologue to its glorious future.  To this we’re all dedicated, and I firmly believe, by the providence of the Almighty, that we will succeed.  President McCain and Vice President Palin will keep America as it has always been, the hope of the earth.  Thank you and God bless America.”

Alright, so there you have Mitt Romney’s speech, a speech to shore up some more of the base.  It was good speech, but I expected better from him.  He can be a great speaker, and I just didn’t see a great speech there.  I’d give it an 8.5/10.

Done Analyzing,

Ranting Republican
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Live Analysis of McCain’s Speech Officially Making Sarah Palin His Running Mate

August 29, 2008

I’m watching the live speech in Dayton, Ohio, waiting for McCain and Palin to come out.

Until then, I’ll give  some thoughts about the pick of Palin:

  • It definitely puts some of the angry Clinton supporters back into play.
  • I think it hurts McCain’s chances of winning Michigan now.  I think Romney would’ve been a much better pick to help McCain win Michigan.
  • This really takes experience off the table, since she’s in her first term as Governor (although Governor is a better position to have when running for President than a legislator).
  • She’ll secure the religious right voters.
  • She’s going to have some pull with women, and that’ll really help McCain.

Alright, here the speech goes.  John and Cindy are coming out.  And the crowd loves him.  He’s getting birthday wishes.  They’re singing happy birthday to him, for the third time now.

“I’m very happy today, to spend my birthday with you, and make a historic announcement in Dayton.”

“I found someone with an outstanding reputation” for ending corruption, executive experience, using tax dollars well and cutting taxes, reaching across the aisle, “someone with strong principles, a fighting spirit, and deep compassion.”  Well, that was a very good description to sell a VP candidate who’s somewhat of a rookie to politics.

Talking about her and her husband being union members in the past, and knowing what people are going though today.  Talking about her winning “on a message of reform and public integrity.”  Now talking about celebrating the anniversary of women’s suffrage – and that got a great response from the crowd.

“She’s not from these parts, and she’s not from Washington, but when you get to know her, you’re gonna be as impressed as I am.”

“She knows where she comes from and she knows who she works for.  She knows what’s right and she doesn’t let anyone tell her to sit down.”

“She’s exactly who I need.  She’s exactly who this country needs.  To help me fight the same old Washington politics of ‘Me first and country second.'”

“My friends, I am very pleased to introduce to you, the next Vice President of the United States, Governor Sarah Palin of the great state fo Alaska.”

And Sarah is walking out now.  Getting a great reception from the crowd.

“Thank you so much!”  And the crowd continues to love her.

“Senator, I am honored to be chosen as your running mate.”

And I have to go to class – sorry, I’ll post more stuff about this late hopefully.

Done Reporting,

Ranting Republican
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John McCain Picks Alaska Senator Sarah Palin as His Running Mate

August 29, 2008

Well, holy crap!  I never expected to see this.  I was in the bookstore coming back from class and this broke in, so I got what I needed and rushed back to my room.  I mean – holy crap, I never expected this.

I was expecting Mitt Romney or Tim Pawlenty, but NEVER Sarah Palin.  Her Intrade stock has now skyrocketed to 98.3.

I truly am shocked.  I’ve done some quick Googling to find out more about her – she looks like a pretty cool governor, and all the news stations have been talking about her being a reformer and ending corruption in the party and the state.

This was a very last minute thing.  Her Intrade stock opened at 6.1 this morning, and quickly skyrocketed to 80.  Then by 9:30 it was down near 30.  Then it skyrocketed back up in is  nearly at 100.

I’ll try to get McCain’s speech formally announcing this, but the McCain campaign has confirmed that she is the pick.

Here’s a copy of the press release the McCain campaign sent out:

John McCain Selects Alaska Governor Sarah Palin As Vice Presidential Running Mate

 

ARLINGTON, VA — U.S. Senator John McCain today announced that he has selected Alaska Governor Sarah Palin to be his running mate and to serve as his vice president.

Governor Palin is a tough executive who has demonstrated during her time in office that she is ready to be president. She has brought Republicans and Democrats together within her Administration and has a record of delivering on the change and reform that we need in Washington.

Governor Palin has challenged the influence of the big oil companies while fighting for the development of new energy resources. She leads a state that matters to every one of us — Alaska has significant energy resources and she has been a leader in the fight to make America energy independent.

In Alaska, Governor Palin challenged a corrupt system and passed a landmark ethics reform bill. She has actually used her veto and cut budgetary spending. She put a stop to the “bridge to nowhere” that would have cost taxpayers $400 million dollars.

As the head of Alaska’s National Guard and as the mother of a soldier herself, Governor Palin understands what it takes to lead our nation and she understands the importance of supporting our troops.

Governor Palin has the record of reform and bipartisanship that others can only speak of. Her experience in shaking up the status quo is exactly what is needed in Washington today.

 

Done Reporting,

Ranting Republican
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Republican National Convention May Be Postponed Due to Hurricane Gustav

August 29, 2008

There are now rumors flying around that the Republican Party may postpone the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis-St. Paul, because of Tropical Storm Gustav, which is headed toward the Gulf Coast (possibly New Orleans, but almost certainly somewhere in Louisiana), and will most likely be a hurricane by the end of this week (as of now, the National Hurricane Center is saying Category 1 or 2).

Not only would this create a problem for the party, due to a some speakers being unavailable (President Bush, Governor Bobby Jindal [R-LA], and others), but it would also look bad to see news stories about Republicans celebrating and people dying and having homes destroyed in a hurricane.

Although the media would just naturally have to report both stories, and people would correlate this situation with Hurricane Katrina, I hope that Obama (or other Democrats) wouldn’t attack McCain (or Republicans as a whole) for not postponing the convention (ultimately it’s not his choice), because that would be extremely low.  Conventions can’t be postponed because of a natural disaster, and  hurricanes are a common thing in the month of August.  The Democrats wouldn’t have postponed it, but the whole Katrina fiasco (which was actually more of Ray Nagin and Governor Kathleen Blanco’s fault than Bush’s) would seem to be replayed here.

Matt Burns, a spokesman for the RNC told reporters on Tuesday, “We are planning for our convention to open on Monday.  Like all Americans, we are monitoring the situation closely in the Gulf.”

An anonymous GOP official told reporters, “You would have to dramatically change the nature of what you do. Much less partisan. Much less political.  Otherwise, it’s the elephant in the room.”

There is also one other possible reason that the convention would be postponed: Bobby Jindal getting the pick for running mate.  Although unlikely, his name has been tossed in the hat of possible picks.  I won’t be surprised if rumors of a postponement will make his Intrade stock scores take a jump later on today as this story gets picked up by the mainstream media.

However, I have also heard that it would be political gold if Jindal was picked and then left the convention to go back to Louisiana.

Personally, I still think Mitt Romney (R-MA), but maybe Governor Tim Pawlenty (R-MN) will be the choice.

I’ll keep you updated as this situation continues.

Done Reporting,

Ranting Republican
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Focus on the Family’s James Dobson Will Endorse John McCain

July 27, 2008

Early last week (while I was on vacation), I saw a news story about Dr. James Dobson, from Focus on the Family, saying that he might endorse McCain.  So, I dug around and found the whole quote, from Dr. Dobson’s July 21st podcast.  With him is Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.  The podcast is originally available on the Focus on the Family website:

MOHLER: I have to tell you, I find Barack Obama to be a very attractive person, a very attractive candidate. I would want to vote for him. But the closer I look at his positions, the more alarmed I become. He is the candidate who bills himself as a candidate of change, and in an odd way he is, just not the kind of change that I think most Americans now understand. So, Doctor, when I look at this, I have to say we’re looking at the most liberal candidate, I think, to gain a party nomination probably in the history of this country. And on so many of the issues, far beyond even where a Bill Clinton was. That’s what I think most Americans don’t understand. Many evangelicals don’t understand, particularly younger evangelicals. This is a man who has staked out his positions for the last 20 years in a way that is markedly beyond where most Americans believe he is.

DOBSON: I think he’s more liberal and more extreme than most Democrats in the Senate.

[...]

DOBSON: That, and the fact that I’m so very concerned about Senator Obama and what he believes and stands for, as well as the need to rethink some of my views regarding Senator McCain, and that thinking has taken place and continues to do so. This is been the most difficult moral dilemma for me. It’s why you haven’t heard me say much about it, because I have struggled on this issue. And there’s some concerns here that matter to me more than my own life, and neither of the candidates is consistent with my views in that regard. But Senator McCain is certainly closer to them than Senator Obama by a wide margin, and there’s no doubt about — at least no doubt in my mind — about whose policies will result in more babies being killed or who will do the greatest damage to the institution of marriage and the family. I’m convinced that Senator McCain comes closer to what I believe.

So, I am not endorsing Senator McCain today. I don’t even know who his vice presidential candidate will be. You know, he could very well choose a pro-abortion candidate, and it would not be unlike him to do that because he seems to enjoy frustrating conservatives on occasions. But as of this moment, I have to take into account the fact that Senator John McCain has voted pro-life consistently, and that’s a fact. That he says he favors marriage between a man and a woman; I believe that. He opposes homosexual adoption. He favors smaller government and lower taxes, and he seems to understand the Muslim threat, which matters a lot to me. I’m very concerned about that. Therefore — therefore — I have considered the fact that elections always involved imperfect candidates. There are no perfect human beings, and you always have to choose between two flawed individuals. That’s the way we’re all made. So, it comes down to this, and I never thought I would hear myself saying this, but it’s where I am — that while I am not endorsing Senator John McCain, the possibility is there that I might, and that’s all I can say at this time.

Transcript from Media Matters.

I’ve bolded the crucial part of that podcast.  And this is essentially Dr. Dobson saying that he’ll endorse McCain.  Unless McCain picks a liberal, pro-choice running mate (like Lieberman), he’ll get Dobson’s endorsement, which equates to at least 95% of the Religious Right vote.  And McCain won’t pick Lieberman or any pro-choice candidate.  He’ll have a hard enough time securing the party base (Religious Right and others) without picking some liberal.  He won’t pick Lieberman just because of his Iraq stance (as I’ve said before).

Dr. Dobson sent a written statement to the Associated Press, saying, “There’s nothing dishonorable in a person rethinking his or her positions, especially in a constantly changing political context.  Barack Obama contradicts and threatens everything I believe about the institution of the family and what is best for the nation.  His radical positions on life, marriage and national security force me to reevaluate the candidacy of our only other choice, John McCain. … If that is a flip-flop, then so be it.”  He did that to keep the AP from saying what I’m saying now – that his statements are essentially and endorsement.  I do see where he’s coming from – he doesn’t want to endorse him until he picks a VP, just in case, but that VP will be Mitt Romney, and Dobson will be fine with that, and endorse the Republican ticket.

McCain will get almost all of the Religious Right vote, as I’ve previously said, and ultimately, he’ll win the election.

I’ll keep you updated on the Dobson endorsement, as time goes on.

Done Predicting,

Ranting Republican
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Religious Right Movement Leaders Leaning Toward Supporting McCain

July 3, 2008

So, I just saw an Associated Press article that really encouraged me.  I have always considered myself to be a member of the “Religious Right” or the “Conservative Evangelicals” or whatever you want to label that group of people like James Dobson (president of Focus on the Family).

But then came Mitt Romney, and a lot of Christians said they wouldn’t vote for a Mormon, and I said that if Romney lost because the RR wouldn’t vote for him, I would disassociated myself from them.  Well, Romney lost because the media fell in love with John Sydney McCain III.  But, the RR didn’t exactly put up a fight for McCain’s love, in fact, RR leaders such as Dobson have said that they may not vote for McCain.  I did a post a couple months ago about why pro-lifers should vote for McCain, so I won’t go into details about why I think conservative evangelicals should vote for him.  If you want to read more, see the link above.

I’ll highlight some points from the AP article:

90 RR leaders (Phyllis Schlafly, head of the Eagle Forum; Tim LaHaye, co-author of the Left Behind series; Beverly LaHaye [Tim's wife], founder of Concerned Women for America; David Barton, founder of WallBuilders; Rick Scarborough, from Vision America; and Don Hodel, a former interior secretary and the former president of Focus on the Family; Dr. Dobson was not there – he was at a book signing in California) met in Denver, Colorado on Tuesday night, at a meeting hosted by Mathew Staver, head of Florida’s Liberty Counsel legal advocacy group.

Staver told reporters, “Our shared core values compel us to unite and choose the presidential candidate that best advances those values.  That obvious choice is Sen. John McCain.  I think people left the meeting in unity the likes of which have not been evident through the primaries.  Obama is a considerable threat to our values.  At the same time, Senator McCain recently has been reaching out to evangelicals and conservative voters that we represent.”

The leaders signed a letter to McCain that asked McCain to pick Mike Huckabee as his VP candidate.  Staver, one  of the signers, had endorsed Huckabee earlier in the year.

Phil Burress, the  leader of an Ohio group that was involved in an anti-gay marriage ban in 2004 described the letter as more of a “suggestion, not a demand.  This is a man you don’t threaten.  His principles are his principles.  The last thing you want to do is try to force him to do something he doesn’t want to do because he’d probably do the opposite.”  I think that Burress is overreacting, but McCain does have somewhat of a firey personality, and a list of demands probably wouldn’t come across too well.

Burress went on to say that choosing Huckabee is not the main goal, but that McCain should choose a “pro-life and pro-family” candidate, whether that is Huckabee or not.  He then went on to say that some RR leaders don’t like Huckabee, because of his populist stances (social conservativism mixed with economic liberalism).  And that’s one reason that I disliked Huckabee.  Christians often use a populist message claiming that “Jesus wanted us to help the poor, so let’s have the government help the poor with welfare.”  Well, Jesus wanted US to help the poor, but the “us” wasn’t the government, but the church.  The reason that Christians turn to the government to help the poor is because the church has failed in its duty to the poor and elderly.  If the church did it’s job, we wouldn’t need Medicare and Medicaid.  And who do I mean when  I say “the church”?  I mean every Christian, including myself.  We should at least be giving a tenth of our income, and that would provide a huge resource to churches all over.  A lot of people give to the church, but it’s often just a bare minimum.  OK, back on topic…

Burress told reporters, “People are not saying, ‘Let’s all go out and support John McCain.’  It’s more like, ‘We have to do what we have to do for our country.’  Basically, that boiled down to John McCain.  The only evangelicals that will support Obama are the ones who haven’t read their Bible.  The more and more we learn about Obama, the closer and closer we get to McCain.  We have agreed that we’ll be working hard the next few months.”

“The only evangelicals that will support Obama are the ones who haven’t read their Bible” – THAT’S AN AWESOME QUOTE!  I’ve never heard of that guy, but I like him!  I will say that that  shouldn’t be taken to mean that anybody who votes for Obama isn’t a Christian, but anybody who can support somebody who CLEARLY violates basic Biblical principles (anybody who isn’t pro-life) has some issues with their Christianity (not that mine, or anybody’s spiritual life is anywhere NEAR perfect).

I would like to see McCain stop supporting embryonic stem cell research, but I’d be willing to take the lesser of 2 evils on this one, and I’d like to see Dr. Dobson support McCain.

I’m glad to see the Religious Right coming around and trying to do the right thing here.

Done Ranting,

Ranting  Republican
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Hillary Clinton Drops Out of the Race (FINALLY!): A Look At Her Concession Speech

June 13, 2008

Alright, I know this is a few days old, but my life got hectic over the weekend, so here’s my commentary of Clinton’s concession / endorsement speech:

Thank you so much. Thank you all.

Well, this isn’t exactly the party I’d planned, but I sure like the company.

I want to start today by saying how grateful I am to all of you – to everyone who poured your hearts and your hopes into this campaign, who drove for miles and lined the streets waving homemade signs, who scrimped and saved to raise money, who knocked on doors and made calls, who talked and sometimes argued with your friends and neighbors, who emailed and contributed online, who invested so much in our common enterprise, to the moms and dads who came to our events, who lifted their little girls and little boys on their shoulders and whispered in their ears, “See, you can be anything you want to be.”

I must say – although she raisedsignificantly less, I’ve heard more stories where some little girl donated her lemonade stand money to Clinton than stories like that about Obama.  I think more college kids gave small amounts to Obama.  Myself, I gave to Romney, and bought a lapel pin from McCain after he  got the nomination.

To the young people like 13 year-old Ann Riddle from Mayfield, Ohio who had been saving for two years to go to Disney World, and decided to use her savings instead to travel to Pennsylvania with her Mom and volunteer there as well. To the veterans and the childhood friends, to New Yorkers and Arkansans who traveled across the country and telling anyone who would listen why you supported me.

It’s like she read my mind (scary).

To all those women in their 80s and their 90s born before women could vote who cast their votes for our campaign. I’ve told you before about Florence Steen of South Dakota, who was 88 years old, and insisted that her daughter bring an absentee ballot to her hospice bedside. Her daughter and a friend put an American flag behind her bed and helped her fill out the ballot. She passed away soon after, and under state law, her ballot didn’t count. But her daughter later told a reporter, “My dad’s an ornery old cowboy, and he didn’t like it when he heard mom’s vote wouldn’t be counted. I don’t think he had voted in 20 years. But he voted in place of my mom.”

I hate to be cruel and say this, but honestly, the vote shouldn’t count.

To all those who voted for me, and to whom I pledged my utmost, my commitment to you and to the progress we seek is unyielding. You have inspired and touched me with the stories of the joys and sorrows that make up the fabric of our lives and you have humbled me with your commitment to our country.

18 million of you from all walks of life – women and men, young and old, Latino and Asian, African-American and Caucasian, rich, poor and middle class, gay and straight – you have stood strong with me. And I will continue to stand strong with you, every time, every place, and every way that I can. The dreams we share are worth fighting for.

Remember – we fought for the single mom with a young daughter, juggling work and school, who told me, “I’m doing it all to better myself for her.” We fought for the woman who grabbed my hand, and asked me, “What are you going to do to make sure I have health care?” and began to cry because even though she works three jobs, she can’t afford insurance. We fought for the young man in the Marine Corps t-shirt who waited months for medical care and said, “Take care of my buddies over there and then, will you please help take care of me?” We fought for all those who’ve lost jobs and health care, who can’t afford gas or groceries or college, who have felt invisible to their president these last seven years.

Our military needs to be taken care of better – and I do think McCain is the man for that job.  Say what you want about his stance on the Iraq War, but you can’t deny that he would dedicate a HUGE part of his administration to bettering the Department of Veterans Affairs.

I entered this race because I have an old-fashioned conviction: that public service is about helping people solve their problems and live their dreams. I’ve had every opportunity and blessing in my own life – and I want the same for all Americans. Until that day comes, you will always find me on the front lines of democracy – fighting for the future.

The way to continue our fight now – to accomplish the goals for which we stand – is to take our energy, our passion, our strength and do all we can to help elect Barack Obama the next President of the United States.

You don’t really mean that.

Today, as I suspend my campaign, I congratulate him on the victory he has won and the extraordinary race he has run. I endorse him, and throw my full support behind him. And I ask all of you to join me in working as hard for Barack Obama as you have for me.

And that’s a lie too.

I have served in the Senate with him for four years. I have been in this campaign with him for 16 months. I have stood on the stage and gone toe-to-toe with him in 22 debates. I have had a front row seat to his candidacy, and I have seen his strength and determination, his grace and his grit.

In his own life, Barack Obama has lived the American Dream. As a community organizer, in the state senate, as a United States Senator – he has dedicated himself to ensuring the dream is realized. And in this campaign, he has inspired so many to become involved in the democratic process and invested in our common future.

Now when I started this race, I intended to win back the White House, and make sure we have a president who puts our country back on the path to peace, prosperity, and progress. And that’s exactly what we’re going to do by ensuring that Barack Obama walks through the doors of the Oval Office on January 20, 2009.

I really don’t think that will happen – with or without your support, but I can pretty much garantee that it won’t happen after you dragged this primary season out for a few extra months.

I understand that we all know this has been a tough fight. The Democratic Party is a family, and it’s now time to restore the ties that bind us together and to come together around the ideals we share, the values we cherish, and the country we love.

We may have started on separate journeys – but today, our paths have merged. And we are all heading toward the same destination, united and more ready than ever to win in November and to turn our country around because so much is at stake.

We all want an economy that sustains the American Dream, the opportunity to work hard and have that work rewarded, to save for college, a home and retirement, to afford that gas and those groceries and still have a little left over at the end of the month. An economy that lifts all of our people and ensures that our prosperity is broadly distributed and shared.

Again – the goal should NOT be cheap gas people!  The goal should be to get OFF gas!

We all want a health care system that is universal, high quality, and affordable so that parents no longer have to choose between care for themselves or their children or be stuck in dead end jobs simply to keep their insurance. This isn’t just an issue for me – it is a passion and a cause – and it is a fight I will continue until every single American is insured – no exceptions, no excuses.

Health care for all is a good idea, but it’s not the government’s job to provide that.

We all want an America defined by deep and meaningful equality – from civil rights to labor rights, from women’s rights to gay rights, from ending discrimination to promoting unionization to providing help for the most important job there is: caring for our families.

Gays have the SAME rights as everybody else.  Where they differ is privileges.  Marriage BENEFITS area privilege.  Marriage the ceremony is a freedom of religion right.  I could care less if a gay couple kisses in some chapel, but the government should NOT reward them with a tax break.

We all want to restore America’s standing in the world, to end the war in Iraq and once again lead by the power of our values, and to join with our allies to confront our shared challenges from poverty and genocide to terrorism and global warming.

EVERYBODY (including McCain) wants to end the Iraq War, not just Democrats – stop acting like it’s exclusive to YOUR party.

You know, I’ve been involved in politics and public life in one way or another for four decades. During those forty years, our country has voted ten times for President. Democrats won only three of those times. And the man who won two of those elections is with us today.

We made tremendous progress during the 90s under a Democratic President, with a flourishing economy, and our leadership for peace and security respected around the world. Just think how much more progress we could have made over the past 40 years if we had a Democratic president. Think about the lost opportunities of these past seven years – on the environment and the economy, on health care and civil rights, on education, foreign policy and the Supreme Court. Imagine how far we could’ve come, how much we could’ve achieved if we had just had a Democrat in the White House.

Well, you had Jimmy Carter, and look how that turned out!

We cannot let this moment slip away. We have come too far and accomplished too much.

Now the journey ahead will not be easy. Some will say we can’t do it. That it’s too hard. That we’re just not up to the task. But for as long as America has existed, it has been the American way to reject “can’t do” claims, and to choose instead to stretch the boundaries of the possible through hard work, determination, and a pioneering spirit.

It is this belief, this optimism, that Senator Obama and I share, and that has inspired so many millions of our supporters to make their voices heard.

So today, I am standing with Senator Obama to say: Yes we can.

There’s a big difference between can and will.

Together we will work. We’ll have to work hard to get universal health care. But on the day we live in an America where no child, no man, and no woman is without health insurance, we will live in a stronger America. That’s why we need to help elect Barack Obama our President.

Ehh – you really should’ve chosen Edwards as your nominee.  He’d have been your best candidate.

We’ll have to work hard to get back to fiscal responsibility and a strong middle class. But on the day we live in an America whose middle class is thriving and growing again, where all Americans, no matter where they live or where their ancestors came from, can earn a decent living, we will live in a stronger America and that is why we must elect Barack Obama our President.

Fiscal responsibility – like giving out $600 to people who make stupid financial decisions?  No Mrs. Clinton, you are NOT fiscally responsible (not that McCain is exactly great when it comes to money either).

We’ll have to work hard to foster the innovation that makes us energy independent and lift the threat of global warming from our children’s future. But on the day we live in an America fueled by renewable energy, we will live in a stronger America. That’s why we have to help elect Barack Obama our President.

McCain is a huge advocate for alternative energy, as am I.  We need to build more nuclear power plants.  On another note, as a meteorologist, there’s no evidence that global warming is human caused.  Will it hurt to clean up the earth?  No, but global warming threats are not as bad as the media and politicians say.  Even the National Climatic Data Center hasn’t found that global warming is human caused.

We’ll have to work hard to bring our troops home from Iraq, and get them the support they’ve earned by their service. But on the day we live in an America that’s as loyal to our troops as they have been to us, we will live in a stronger America and that is why we must help elect Barack Obama our President.

This election is a turning point election and it is critical that we all understand what our choice really is. Will we go forward together or will we stall and slip backwards. Think how much progress we have already made. When we first started, people everywhere asked the same questions:

Could a woman really serve as Commander-in-Chief? Well, I think we answered that one.

So, since you lost is the answer no?  You weren’t anywhere close to becoming the Commander-in-Chief.

And could an African American really be our President? Senator Obama has answered that one.

Alan Keyes?

Together Senator Obama and I achieved milestones essential to our progress as a nation, part of our perpetual duty to form a more perfect union.

Right – you did things together – that’s believable.

Now, on a personal note – when I was asked what it means to be a woman running for President, I always gave the same answer: that I was proud to be running as a woman but I was running because I thought I’d be the best President. But I am a woman, and like millions of women, I know there are still barriers and biases out there, often unconscious.

I want to build an America that respects and embraces the potential of every last one of us.

I ran as a daughter who benefited from opportunities my mother never dreamed of. I ran as a mother who worries about my daughter’s future and a mother who wants to lead all children to brighter tomorrows. To build that future I see, we must make sure that women and men alike understand the struggles of their grandmothers and mothers, and that women enjoy equal opportunities, equal pay, and equal respect. Let us resolve and work toward achieving some very simple propositions: There are no acceptable limits and there are no acceptable prejudices in the twenty-first century.

You can be so proud that, from now on, it will be unremarkable for a woman to win primary state victories, unremarkable to have a woman in a close race to be our nominee, unremarkable to think that a woman can be the President of the United States. And that is truly remarkable.

I really don’t think it was remarkable this time.  It was simply that no woman seemed very interested before (other than Geraldine Ferraro’s Vice PResidential run).

To those who are disappointed that we couldn’t go all the way – especially the young people who put so much into this campaign – it would break my heart if, in falling short of my goal, I in any way discouraged any of you from pursuing yours. Always aim high, work hard, and care deeply about what you believe in. When you stumble, keep faith. When you’re knocked down, get right back up. And never listen to anyone who says you can’t or shouldn’t go on.

That’s right young people.  When you know you’re beaten, keep getting up and making a fool of yourself so that you have to be told when to quit for the good of others.  Go ahead, make a fool of yourselves!

As we gather here today in this historic magnificent building, the 50th woman to leave this Earth is orbiting overhead. If we can blast 50 women into space, we will someday launch a woman into the White House.

Um – what does being an astronaut have anything to do with being President?  We’ve put monkeys and dogs in space too.

Although we weren’t able to shatter that highest, hardest glass ceiling this time, thanks to you, it’s got about 18 million cracks in it. And the light is shining through like never before, filling us all with the hope and the sure knowledge that the path will be a little easier next time. That has always been the history of progress in America.

Think of the suffragists who gathered at Seneca Falls in 1848 and those who kept fighting until women could cast their votes. Think of the abolitionists who struggled and died to see the end of slavery. Think of the civil rights heroes and foot-soldiers who marched, protested and risked their lives to bring about the end to segregation and Jim Crow.

I don’t get the big deal about a woman ever being elected President.  I’ll vote for the most qualified person – woman or man, black or white.  If we never have a woman President, I’m fine with that.  If we only have women President after 2008, I’ll be fine with that too.  The fact that YOU are emphasizing this so much shows that you still have biases.

Because of them, I grew up taking for granted that women could vote. Because of them, my daughter grew up taking for granted that children of all colors could go to school together. Because of them, Barack Obama and I could wage a hard fought campaign for the Democratic nomination. Because of them, and because of you, children today will grow up taking for granted that an African American or a woman can yes, become President of the United States.

When that day arrives and a woman takes the oath of office as our President, we will all stand taller, proud of the values of our nation, proud that every little girl can dream and that her dreams can come true in America. And all of you will know that because of your passion and hard work you helped pave the way for that day.

So I want to say to my supporters, when you hear people saying – or think to yourself – “if only” or “what if,” I say, “please don’t go there.” Every moment wasted looking back keeps us from moving forward.

Life is too short, time is too precious, and the stakes are too high to dwell on what might have been. We have to work together for what still can be. And that is why I will work my heart out to make sure that Senator Obama is our next President and I hope and pray that all of you will join me in that effort.

To my supporters and colleagues in Congress, to the governors and mayors, elected officials who stood with me, in good times and in bad, thank you for your strength and leadership. To my friends in our labor unions who stood strong every step of the way – I thank you and pledge my support to you. To my friends, from every stage of my life – your love and ongoing commitments sustain me every single day. To my family – especially Bill and Chelsea and my mother, you mean the world to me and I thank you for all you have done. And to my extraordinary staff, volunteers and supporters, thank you for working those long, hard hours. Thank you for dropping everything – leaving work or school – traveling to places you’d never been, sometimes for months on end. And thanks to your families as well because your sacrifice was theirs too.

All of you were there for me every step of the way. Being human, we are imperfect. That’s why we need each other. To catch each other when we falter. To encourage each other when we lose heart. Some may lead; others may follow; but none of us can go it alone. The changes we’re working for are changes that we can only accomplish together. Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are rights that belong to each of us as individuals. But our lives, our freedom, our happiness, are best enjoyed, best protected, and best advanced when we do work together.

That is what we will do now as we join forces with Senator Obama and his campaign. We will make history together as we write the next chapter in America’s story. We will stand united for the values we hold dear, for the vision of progress we share, and for the country we love. There is nothing more American than that.

And looking out at you today, I have never felt so blessed. The challenges that I have faced in this campaign are nothing compared to those that millions of Americans face every day in their own lives. So today, I’m going to count my blessings and keep on going. I’m going to keep doing what I was doing long before the cameras ever showed up and what I’ll be doing long after they’re gone: Working to give every American the same opportunities I had, and working to ensure that every child has the chance to grow up and achieve his or her God-given potential.

I will do it with a heart filled with gratitude, with a deep and abiding love for our country– and with nothing but optimism and confidence for the days ahead. This is now our time to do all that we can to make sure that in this election we add another Democratic president to that very small list of the last 40 years and that we take back our country and once again move with progress and commitment to the future.

There’s a reason that in a country with more liberals than Democrats we’ve had more conservative Presidents over the past 40 years.  And a big reason there is Jimmy Carter.

Thank you all and God bless you and God bless America.

So, that’s Clinton’s speech.  I was actually surprised she talked about Obama as much as she did.

I got annoyed at all the talk about women in the future accomplishing stuff – it shows she still has biases and makes decisions based on race and encourages others to do the same.

I don’t think that speech (or any in the future) will be enough to mend the wounds in the party.

Hello President John Sydney McCain III!

Done Ranting,

Ranting Republican
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Montana, South Dakota, and New Mexico June 3rd Primary Predictions: Clinton, Obama, and McCain to Win

June 2, 2008

First, I’d like to apologize to the Idaho Republicans.  While in the midst of a house crisis, I completely forgot about your primary, and  for that, I am sorry.  Yours was the only primary/caucus that I did not post a prediction for.

Now, on to the June 3rd primaries…

South Dakota:

Democrats:

  1. Clinton 53% 8 delegates
  2. Obama 46% 7 delegates
  3. Uncommitted 1%

Republicans:

  1. McCain 80% 24 delegates
  2. Paul 12%
  3. Huckabee 4%
  4. Romney 2%
  5. Uncommitted 1%

Montana (Democrats only):

  1. Obama 56% 10 delegates
  2. Clinton 43% 6 delegates
  3. Uncommitted 1%

New Mexico (Republicans only):

  1. McCain 87% 29 delegates
  2. Paul 13%

I may or may not be available to live blog the event, but I will post if anybody does reach the delegate count needed to win (Obama has been trying to get pledged delegates for “The Flood” tomorrow – where supposedly 30 Superdelegates will hopefully come out for him and give him the unofficial win).

Done Predicting,

Ranting Republican
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