Coming to A City Near You

Good afternoon readers.  I hope your week has been going well.

I wanted to alert you all to several upcoming events that the Leadership Institute is hosting.  As you may or may not know, The Leadership Institute runs a number of schools for conservative activists that delve into a number of political topics.  Now many of these educational opportunities take place at their headquarters in Arlington, but for those Virginians outside the beltway, I have good news.  Within the coming months, LI will be running their Campaign School at three locations across the state.  The first will be in Arlington on August 14.  The second is in Virginia Beach on September 11.  The third is taking place in Christiansburg on September 18.  Perhaps you’ve near participated in a campaign before, or maybe you’re a longtime regular like myself.  Either way, I’m sure we can learn a tremendous lot from a great opportunity like this one.  The cost is merely $20, and if you register early on their website you can get in for half off.  Yes, lunch is included.

I would recommend reserving your spot now before all the spaces are gone.  Meet with conservative activists from your area and the experts at the Leadership Institute.  I know that I hope to catch the one in Christiansburg.  Check their website for more details.

You know I’ve been encouraging you to get active and get involved.  So what are you waiting for?


Photo from Senator Graham’s website

For a moment I thought about ending this post with no text and only the above picture.  After all, one could write page after page about Senator Graham and only begin to scratch the surface on how he has betrayed the citizens of South Carolina, the nation, the Constitution, and the conservative movement.

When I head the news that four Republican Senators were now supporting the confirmation of Elena Kagan for the Supreme Court, I instantly knew that Snowe and Collins (both from Maine) would be among them.   The other two proved to be a bit trickier.  Lugar (Indiana), I might of guessed but didn’t.  Then we have Senator Lindsey Graham (South Carolina).  This guy keeps making news for all of the wrong reasons.  Certainly there have been some surprises with Supreme Court nominees in the past, nevertheless, Graham’s sad eagerness to readily endorse Obama’s picks of Sotomayor and now Kagan is deeply troubling.  Having twice been censured by the SCGOP thus far, one wonders how he has been able to win the Republican nomination.  One thing is for sure.  If he is a conservative, as he claims, then I assure you the movement is doomed.

Please, please, please South Carolina voters.  I’ve met many of you during my work in your state.  You have elected one of the best and also one of the worst Senators in the country.  Can’t you find someone who better represents your values than Grahamnesty?

For more information try reading a recent post by the Conservative Examiner.

Disgraceful.  Utterly disgraceful.

Working For The Enemy, Part I

Before, during, and since college, I have held a number of jobs in various organizations, some political and some not.  Besides the ones I’ve mentioned earlier, just to rattle off a few more:  I’ve worked in a law office, I was a tour guide at the home of James Monroe, and I was a servant of the federal government during the 2000 Census.  Just the other day I just spoke to a 2010 Census taker.  My, where does the time go?  Ah, but one job though that I rarely discuss, especially to potential employers, was my time as a political pollster.

Leading up to this moment in time, I developed quite an interest in political polling.  During my later years at William & Mary, I took a class on the subject taught by the often hyper-enthusiastic Professor Rapport.  Regressing further, back in high school, I wrote and conducted two polls among my classmates.  The first concerned politics and the second was about religion.  Although my results have long since disappeared, I seem to recall that most of the students polled were rather conservative, like me.  Of course, only a select few were really vocal on topic.  I think it would be very interesting to see if these former classmates retained their views or if they had changed over time.  Then again, I did and still do wonder if at that age (freshmen and sophomore) have most folks formed their own political and religious convictions or are they merely a reflection or rejection of their parents’ ideology?  In either case, I would expect the current crop of students at Harrisonburg High School to be far more liberal than those fifteen years removed.

Let me tell you that polling is not a passive sport nor is it a job for the introvert.  You must actively engage your subjects and ask them probing questions.  Given that some people are secretive about their own political feelings, you must, in a timely fashion, convince them to share their thoughts with you, a perfect stranger.  This effort is particularly challenging when done in real time, either face-to-face or via the telephone.  At all moments you must be polite but firm, professional but understanding.  Depending on the situation, polling can be the most frustrating but also the most fascinating work available in politics today.

Slipping back to my personal story, since graduation, I had been itching to work in politics, to put my degree to some use.  Unfortunately, up until then, my efforts had been for naught.  I literally papered Washington D.C. with my resume, knocking on the door of every Republican politician and organization.  I got a couple of calls back from some people like Senator Warner’s office.  I dashed to a few interviews with Senator Kyl, Representative Goodlatte, and the Department of Agriculture…but nothing panned out.  As you can imagine, when I heard about the prospect of working in political polling, I jumped at the chance.  Best of all, it was in the nearby city of Charlottesville.  My chance had come!  I didn’t take the time to learn more and so I eagerly accepted a position as a political pollster.  How naïve.  At the time, I was living and working in the city of Harrisonburg, so I commuted across the mountain for a couple of months until I relocated to the Charlottesville/Albemarle County area.

So began my employment with Cooper & Secrest.  Some of you have heard of this organization and are already groaning, though most of you have likely not.  Given the title of the article, I would expect you can guess, at least in part, how this story will unfold.  Therefore, I hope you’ll join me for part 2 as we delve deeper into this chapter of my political life.

The Feds v. Arizona

You’ve likely already heard the news by now.  The federal government has filed suit in Phoenix against Arizona’s illegal immigration policy.  They claim that their new law is discriminatory and will result in the harassment and detainment of scores of new immigrants and legal aliens.  This update comes as politicians across the nation prepare to enact similar legislation in their own states.  It comes as no surprise to me that the individual states look to defend their own borders given D.C.’s failure to do so.  National leaders like Senators McCain, Graham, and the late Ted Kennedy support amnesty and porous security at the expense of citizens and those who enter the country legally.  Regardless of your opinion of the specifics of the Arizona law, something must be done to solve this growing crisis.  I don’t know how this situation will ultimately resolve, but I’m glad to see a resurgence of responsibly at the state level.  That’s not to say that I support differing immigration policies across the nation, but, to restate the point, something must be done! The actions of lawmakers in Phoenix are bringing this long neglected issue to the forefront of American politics.

If Washington continues to do nothing, or, even worse, encourages foreign nationals to break our laws, then we will have to rely on the states to solve the immigration question.  So what will be Richmond’s response?

Obama Eats Babies!

Earlier this week I received a rather troubling email entitled “This is not made up, he did say it loud & clear”.  Within, the email contains a portion of then Senator Obama’s comments from the September 7, 2008 episode of Meet the Press.  It reads as the following:

“‘As I’ve said about the flag pin, I don’t want to be perceived as taking sides”. “There are a lot of people in the world to whom the American flag is a symbol of oppression.” “The anthem itself conveys a war-like message.  You know, the bombs bursting in air and all that sort of thing.’


Obama continued: ‘The National Anthem should be ‘swapped’ for something less parochial and less bellicose. I like the song ‘I’d Like To Teach the World To Sing’. If that were our anthem, then, I might salute it. In my opinion, we should consider reinventing our National Anthem as well as ‘redesign’ our Flag to better offer our enemies hope and love. It’s my intention, if elected, to disarm America to the level of acceptance to our Middle East Brethren.  If we, as a Nation of waring people, conduct ourselves like the nations of Islam, where peace prevails – – – perhaps a state or period of mutual accord could exist between our governments.’

‘When I become President, I will seek a pact of agreement to end hostilities between those who have been at war or in a state of enmity, and a freedom from disquieting oppressive thoughts.  We as a Nation, have placed upon the nations of Islam, an unfair injustice which is WHY my wife disrespects the Flag and she and I have attended several flag burning ceremonies in the past.’

‘Of course now, I have found myself about to become the President of the United States and I have put my hatred aside. I will use my power to bring CHANGE to this Nation, and offer the people a new path.. My wife and I look forward to becoming our Country’s First black Family. Indeed, CHANGE is about to overwhelm the United States of America.’”

Pretty disturbing stuff, don’t you think?  How could anyone support a president who holds such views?  There is only one problem to these quotes.  They aren’t true.  I searched the transcript from Meet the Press on Sept. 7 2008 and I couldn’t find these words anywhere.  In fact, Barack Obama wasn’t even on the program that day, Joe Biden was.  Although I haven’t been able to discover the origins of the entire speech, John Semmens wrote at least a portion of it as a satire on the blog back on October 27, 2007.

Unfortunately, in the partisan conflict to demonize either President Obama or the Republicans, truth is often the first causality.  I could write something utterly ridiculous like “Obama eats babies!” and a segment of the population would just nod their heads in approval without a single shred of evidence.  If misrepresentation or outright lies are necessary to drag our opponents down, so be it.  The ends justify the means!  Bring on the slander and libel.  After all, isn’t that the new America way?  Recklessness now masquerades as responsibility.  I’d like to think that both conservatives and liberals would share my outrage, but I’m really expecting only more of the same.

By the way, I contacted the fellow who sent me this email asking for either proof of his claims or a retraction.  So far I have gotten no response.  No big surprise there.