Lisa Murkowski

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Phyllis Schlafly maintains that “nobody’s stopping [gay couples] from shacking up,” the “problem is they are trying to make us respect them.”
  • Religious Right leaders continue to lavish praise on potential presidential candidate and Indiana Congressman Mike Pence (R-IN).
  • Ralph Reed and talk show host Mike Gallagher are headlining a pro-school vouchers event in Orlando to lead “the revolution to restore America’s exceptionalism” in January.
  • After the Alaska Supreme Court ruled against his appeal, Joe Miller said he won’t stop Lisa Murkowski’s reelection from being certified but will continue to appeal his case.
  • Elaine Donnelly says that Don’t Ask Don’t Tell repeal “means that others will have to get used to the idea of being exposed to people who may be sexually attracted to them.”
  • Coral Ridge Ministries’ Karen Gushta takes to the AFA's news site to blast the National Science Teachers Association for their “bias” against teaching creationism in public schools.

FRC To "Endorse and Fund" Primary Challenges to Any Senator That Supports DADT Repeal

The other day we noted that members of the Freedom Federation had sent another letter to members of the Senate urging them to delay any vote on repealing Don't Ask, Don't Tell until next year (when Republicans would have enough votes to kill any such effort).

Today, The Daily Caller printed a memo written by Freedom Federation founder Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel that was distributed to his Religious Right allies laying out the ten senators they intended to target: 

Senators need to know that they will be held accountable for how they vote on this issue.

Within the next 48 hours be sure to communicate with your constituencies that the following ten Senators in the following states must be contacted, urging them to vote against overturning DADT:

Ben Nelson – Nebraska

Jon Tester – Montana

Kent Conrad – North Dakota

Joe Manchin – West Virginia

Jim Webb – Virginia

Claire McCaskill – Missouri

Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe – Maine

Scott Brown – Massachusetts

Lisa Murkowski – Alaska

These ten Senators need to get the clear message that each of them will have to choose which set of supporters they want in 2012 when they run for reelection. We need to make the choice very clear.

Today, the Family Research Council took it a step further and officially announced that they will "endorse and fund conservative primary challengers to any U.S. Senator who votes to overturn 'Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell' during the lame-duck session":

FRC Action PAC President Connie Mackey made the following comments:

“We are pledging today to endorse, and help fund, conservative primary challengers to any U.S. Senator who votes during the lame-duck session to overturn ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’ FRC Action PAC will work to remove any U.S. Senator who would place liberal special interests ahead of the priorities of the American people.

“The U.S. Senate has twice rejected the overturn of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’ Despite this, Majority Leader Harry Reid continues with his obsession while failing to address the essential responsibilities of the federal government. As three of the four service chiefs have made clear, the men and women of the Armed Forces who are engaged in fighting two wars should not be distracted by Congress using them to advance a liberal social agenda. Using the Senate’s time in the lame-duck session to pay back his liberal political base is simply absurd and demonstrates once again Senator Reid’s misplaced priorities. Members of the Senate should refuse to become accomplices in helping Harry Reid advance his agenda over the American people’s agenda,” concluded Mackey.

What was that I was just saying yesterday about FRC completely losing it over the prospect of seeing DADT repealed?

Right Wing Leftovers

  • The Associated Press has called the Alaska Senate race for Sen. Lisa Murkowski.
  • This New York Times profile reveals Sarah Palin to be remarkably petty, petulant, and uninformed. Not that any of that is a surprise.
  • The Christian Family Coalition is demanding that Republican Gov.-elect Rick Scott divest from QuePasa Corp., on the grounds that the company sells "pornography to Latinos."
  • Shockingly, none of the conservative Tea Party leaders in Congress want to take a seat on the Appropriation Committee because they might be required to actually take responsibility for their rhetoric.
  • Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire won't display the nativity scene that was sent out by the Catholic League.
  • Finally, isn't it amazing how the Religious Right sees no need for accommodating religious beliefs when those beliefs are held by non-Christians?

Right Wing Round-Up

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 11/16/10

Newt Gingrich

Obama: Calls President’s policies “very dangerous” but believes “he loves this country” (CBN News, 11/15).

GOP: Says Republicans can “replace the left” with a ten-year plan (CBS News, 11/12).

Mike Huckabee

Congress: Like Romney, launches petition to support earmark ban (HuckPac, 11/15).

Defense: Open to cutting defense spending to reduce the deficit (Think Progress, 11/15).

Religious Right: Confusion over form of Huckabee’s speech to Iowa Family Policy Center (RWW, 11/11).

Sarah Palin

Reality TV: Premier of new show draws close to 5 million viewers (WSJ, 11/15).

Alaska: Lisa Murkowski criticizes Palin’s leadership capabilities (CBS News, 11/15).

Language: “Refudiate” declared the year’s best new word by the New Oxford American Dictionary (LA Times, 11/15).

Economy: Reuters analyst explores Palin’s “free-market populism” (Reuters, 11/12).

Book tour: Releases schedule for latest book tour with focus on “the heartland” (LA Times, 11/12).

Tim Pawlenty

Health Care: Files amicus brief to support lawsuit calling health care reform unconstitutional (Gov Monitor, 11/15).

Electability: Nate Silver dubs Pawlenty a “league-average politician” (NYT, 11/15).

New Hampshire: Writes anti-spending Op-Ed for state’s foremost conservative newspaper (Union Leader, 11/14).

Mitt Romney

Congress: Like Huckabee, launches petition to support earmark ban (The Hill, 11/15).

Fundraising: Has edge among early fundraisers (NYT, 11/12).

Tea Party: Tea Party Express leader says conservatives “not going to let go of the health care” law in Massachusetts (ABC News, 11/11).

Rick Santorum

2012: Building infrastructure in key states for 2012 run (Sunshine State News, 11/12).

Tea Party: Dubs himself the only authentic Tea Party presidential prospect (Politico, 11/10).

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 10/26/10

Newt Gingrich

2010: Campaigns with GOP gubernatorial candidate John Kasich in Ohio (Columbus Business First, 10/25).

Iowa: Holds “American Solutions” rally in Sioux City, Iowa (Sioux City Journal, 10/22).

Mike Huckabee

GOP: Defends Christine O’Donnell and hits “elitist” establishment (Raw Story, 10/25).

Religious Right: Sarah Posner looks into Huckabee’s ties to anti-gay groups (Religion Dispatches, 10/25).

Economy: Defends the “Fair Tax” on Fox News (Fox News, 10/25).

Sarah Palin

2010: Slams Lisa Murkowski, lauds Joe Miller, in facebook post (Facebook, 10/25).

Arizona: Sheriff Joe Arpaio presents her “pink underwear” as gift (Washington Independent, 10/25).

2012: New York Magazine says that Palin is gearing up presidential campaign (New York Magazine, 10/24).

Tim Pawlenty

Iowa: Has donated over $114,000 to Iowa Republican candidates (Des Moines Register, 10/26).

2010: Stumps for gubernatorial candidates in eight states before election (CNN, 10/25).

2012: Trails Obama in Minnesota in hypothetical race (GOP12, 10/25).

Mitt Romney

Tea Party: Hopes to pursue economic message with Tea Party activists (WSJ, 10/25).

Fundraising: Mega-donors line up behind Romney (Politico, 10/23).

Rick Santorum

Iowa: Campaigns for a GOP majority in the Iowa State House (KTIV, 10/25).

Religious Right: Speaks to Tennessee Right to Life Convention (Knoxville News, 10/21).

Judges: Joins bus tour with NOM, FRC, others to oppose retention for judges who backed same-sex marriage (On Top, 10/21).

Sarah Palin’s Endorsement (?) of Christine O’Donnell

Last night, Sarah Palin retweeted radio talk show host Tammy Bruce’s endorsement of Christine O’Donnell, the Tea Party Republican challenging Rep. Mike Castle for the GOP’s Senate nomination:

Palin, through her infamous twitter account, appears to be backing another Tea Party darling fresh after her candidate Joe Miller upset Sen. Lisa Murkowski in Alaska. With O’Donnell’s far-right, fundamentalist stances on sex and abortion-rights, campaign trail paranoia, record of using campaign funds for personal spending, and contempt of “gotcha” media personalities who challenge fibs and falsehoods, is it really all that surprising that she has won the support of Sarah Palin?

 UpdatePalin Confirms O’Donnell Endorsement

The Inscrutable Sarah Palin

In the wake of Sarah Palin's abrupt resignation announcement last week, I have been trying mightily to avoid all of the speculating, bloviating, and predicting about what it all mean because, frankly, nothing about her meteoric rise or her subsequent erratic behavior has ever made any sense to me. 

I vividly recall staring at the television last year on the day that John McCain plucked her for obscurity by naming her his running mate, slack-jawed and wondering what on earth was going on.  And I had exactly the same reaction last week when she announced that she was resigning.

But even by low standards by which Palin is normally judged, her incoherent explanation of her decision has only become more confusing in the ensuing days, particularly her insistence that even though she was leaving her post with a year left in her term, she was not quitting.  In fact, she went so far as to claim that staying in the job to which she was elected was itself a form of quitting:

Life is too short to compromise time and resources... it may be tempting and more comfortable to just keep your head down, plod along, and appease those who demand: "Sit down and shut up", but that's the worthless, easy path; that's a quitter's way out. And a problem in our country today is apathy. It would be apathetic to just hunker down and "go with the flow" ... Some Alaskans don't mind wasting public dollars and state time. I do. I cannot stand here as your Governor and allow millions upon millions of our dollars go to waste just so I can hold the title of Governor.

Considering that this makes no sense whatsoever, it is not surprising that just about every commentator has pointed out that this explanation makes no sense and so Palin, in an interview with the Anchorage Daily News, sought to explain it yet again while, of course, portraying herself as a victim of some nefarious double-standard:

Palin responded Monday by saying there's a double standard. She brought up the fact [Lisa] Murkowski left the Legislature when her father, then-governor Frank Murkowski, appointed her to the U.S. Senate seat he gave up to become governor.

"The double standard that's applied here is a bit perplexing. ... Didn't Lisa Murkowski leave office to go take her dad's seat? (Govs.) Huntsman left, Napolitano just left ... ," Palin said, referring to governors who took positions in President Obama's administration.

Indeed, but there is a pretty obvious difference:  Lisa Murkowski left to become a US Senator; Jon Hunstman left to become the US Ambassador to China: and Janet Napolitano left to become the Secretary of Department of Homeland Security.

They didn't just leave - they resigned their positions to take higher-ranking positions.  Palin, on the other hand, just left. 

Is it possible that she really doesn't understand this rather obvious and important difference? 

I have to say that, with this announcement, Palin's career has now come full-circle, at least to my mind:  I didn't understand what was going on when McCain chose her, and still don't ... and now I don't understand what she is doing suddenly announcing her resignation.  

I may not agree with the likes of Mike Huckabee or James Dobson or Tony Perkins or any other leader of the Religious Right, but there is a coherence and purpose to the things that they do and the positions that they take. 

With Palin, it is entirely a mystery. 

Draft Palin Movement Gets an Early Start

President-Elect Obama hasn't even been sworn-in yet and, as we noted a few weeks back, Sarah Palin hasn't even agreed to attend this year's CPAC, but none of that is deterring the 2012 Draft Sarah Committee from promising a big showing for itself and its preferred candidate at the upcoming conservative conference:

While not confirmed, Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska is expected to be a key note speaker at 2009 CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conference) in Washington on Feb. 26-28, 2009.

This conference has featured the heavyweights of the Republican conservative movement.

The 2012 Draft Sarah Committee will have a booth at the Conference. We will distribute flyers, buttons, placards and bumper stickers. We intend to make sure that the GOP and the United States knows that Gov. Sarah Palin is an overwhelming favorite to be the Republican Candidate in 2012 for U.S. President. And that she will occupy the White House the next year.

Considering that a newly released poll out of Alaska shows that, were Palin to run for Senate in 2010, she'd lose badly to Lisa Murkowski,it might be a little premature to start proclaiming her to be the "overwhelming favorite to be the Republican Candidate in 2012." 

Speaking of Palin, she's back in the news, this time complaining to irate "filmmaker" Jason Ziegler about how poorly she was treated by the media during the campaign and a bunch of other stuff: