Saturday December 6, 2004 is the Houston run-offs. Right now the talk is turnout will be low. Certainly, political spending in the run-off is down significantly from the November first round.
TCR's advice is first make sure you and your political allies vote. As for who to support, some suggestions:
Mayor: Orlando Sanchez will bring common sense values and ideas to City Hall.
Controller: Bruce Tatro - in a city where spending and taxes go up and up we need a fiscal conservative, he is the one.
City Council At-Large Place 3: Shelley Sekula-Gibbs is the choice over Peter Brown - a Lee Brown friend.
City Council District F: M.J. Khan - long time GOP activist is the choice over Terry McConn who seems like a good guy but hasn't been involved as much.
City Council District G: Jeff Daily - a strong conservative leader who has the experience to help clean up City Hall.
Campaign Finance Reform (Which TCR Opposed)
Has Not Killed Big Political Donations
Remember when McCain - Feingold passed primarily with Democratic support? We were told the big money and the soft money would be out of politics - guess what, it's not happening and in fact it has gotten worse.
The "old" system was party centered and as a former party chair I like that. Now, instead of the parties the money is going to groups created by the same special interests we wanted out of politics.
So now, lets look to see what the democrats are up to - they have set up a coordinating group "America Votes" led by our old friend Cecile Richards (who led an anti-Christian group in Texas). The group will encourage new organizations as well as traditional liberal groups like Planned Parenthood, the Trial Lawyers and the Sierra Club to work together. Also getting involved here is big labor and Emily's list.
They plan on raising $50 - 100 million to support the policies of the Democratic nominee.
On the GOP side - The RNC is doing well with hard money and will come close to replacing the lost soft money. So at this point the Democrats are the ones who have to replace the old soft money with the new soft money.
President Bush Surprises Troops
In Thanksgiving Visit To Iraq
TCR takes its hat off to President Bush for the thoughtful and brilliantly executed visit to Baghdad on Thursday.
We join the President's closing remarks,
"On this Thanksgiving, our nation remembers the men and women of our military, your friends and comrades who paid the ultimate price for our security and freedom. We ask for God's blessings on their families, their loved ones and their friends, and we pray for your safety and your strength, as you defend America and to spread freedom."
Medicare Drug Bill - Short Term Victory
Long Term Problem or Both?
Politically you have to admire President Bush's success of stealing a Democrat issue, prescription drugs for seniors and then passing it over Democratic objections.
At the same time it's important to look at what we have passed. Club For Growth, a staunchly conservative PAC, says the bill does nothing to avoid Medicare's oncoming bankruptcy and would cause many seniors to lose their private prescription drug coverage.
The bill has some possible reforms but they were toned down to attract Democrat support. On balance, we could have done a lot better. Plus with the budget deficit expanding we did not need more in spending. The budget is up 27% in the last two years, far exceeding anything Clinton did.
One congressman who opposed it said "we Republicans seem to have forgotten who we are and why voters sent us here." TCR agrees - we are not Democratic lite.
TCR would like to congratulate the two Texas GOP Congressmen who voted no despite enormous pressure - Ron Paul and John Culberson.
Some GOP leaders say we can improve and fix the problems with the bill after the 2004 election. The Democrats say they can make it more like they want - more government control and expanding benefits later. Whoever proves to be right will be the ultimate test.
One is reminded what Ronald Reagan once said "The closest thing to eternal life on earth is a government agency."
Gay Marriage - Defining The Issue For 2004?
With the Massachusetts Supreme Court effectively legalizing civil marriages for gays will this be "the" issue in 2004?
First, it goes without saying TCR's recent articles about legislating courts and how Lawrence vs. Texas (the sodomy case) could be the basis for gay marriage. Read the Massachusetts's court's opinion, they cite Lawrence vs. Texas!
Second, the GOP base strongly is in favor of traditional marriage. The GOP voters are looking for national leadership on this issue.
Key GOP social conservatives led by James Dobson. Gary Bauer, the Family Research Center and others are working tirelessly to stop this state court decision and ensuring it doesn't apply in the other 49 states.
This will be an issue - how big will depend on the big two - the war against terror and the economy.
About Your Editor
is a long time Republican spokesman, fund-raiser and leader who
recently completed three terms as the Harris County Republican
Chair. During his time as Chairman, Gary was described as the
most successful county Chairman in America by Human Events.
For six years, Gary put out a bi-weekly newsletter which he has
continued due to requests from many Republican activists.
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