Political Gum Hockey

Political Commentary and Humor

Has the Republican party already picked its nominee?

It’s all over but those pesky primaries and caucuses.  Or it seems that way.  The Republican road to the nomination may actually be much shorter than expected.  The winner?

Mitt Romney, of course.

This really isn’t much of a surprise given that Mitt is clearly “the next one in line” and the Republican party pretty much always nominates “the next one in line.”

But wasn’t this time supposed to be different?  I mean, the tea party is running the show and the tea party hates Mitt Romney.  With a passion.  Much passion.

But the writing is on the wall…the view is clear in the crystal ball…we can all read the tea leaves. [And other spectacularly numbing pundit phrases.]  There really isn’t anyone else that even comes close to being a credible candidate for the Republican nomination.  For those who haven’t been paying attention – or are in deep denial of reality – this weekend will make this fact abundantly clear.  That’s because this weekend, tomorrow in fact, the covers close on the quarterly cash hauls and the candidates have to tell the world how much money they raked in to fund the campaign.  And by all reports the results are not going to be pretty.  Let’s see what those tea leaves are going to tell us.

Mitt Romney: Probably in the vicinity of $10-15 million.  Not bad.  Not as much as last quarter.  But hey, this was summer and people are too busy barbecuing cows in Texas and burning their backs in Hawaii (Hi Newt!!).

Rick Perry: Probably less than $10 million.  Maybe much less. Maybe more.  Bottom line is that he pretty much looked like he thought he could wing it at the last three (or was it four?) Republican debates, as if he thought he was up there with a bunch of junior high school kids.  Rick, Rick, Rick…see that guy with the funny middle (and first) name? This is the second time around for this guy.  It’s now or never for Mitt.  And you looked silly up there.  Which is why all everyone can talk about is how fast you imploded.  Admit it.  Even the Red Sox looked better than you this past month.  And that is not a compliment.

Chris Christie: Wait, he’s not even running.  You got it.  The field of candidates is so inspiring that once again – for the 4th or 5th (or 10th) time – the tea party held Republican caucus is desperately looking for its savior of the week.  When the guy who isn’t running is looking better than the guys (and woman) who are running, then Houston, we have a problem.  Hence the reason why…

Michele Bachmann: Ever been to Disneyland?  They have a ride there that straps you into a seat, suddenly shoots you straight up to the top of a huge pedestal, then just as suddenly drops you like bad pun.  Bachmann’s fantasy league run for the presidency ended when the tea party got their last savior in Rick Perry.  Imagine winning the Ames straw poll and the very same day going from the top of the heap to just a heap.

Jon Huntsman: Not sure how much money he’ll bring in but he’s already laying off people (so much for “job creation”).  Huntsman is going to bet the farm (and at least a half million of his own lettuce) on making a showing in New Hampshire.  You know, that place in the northeast US that Huntsman’s political dopplelganger Mitt Romney owns.  Huntsman’s goal at this point is to seem credible enough to become “the next one in line” for 2016.

Herman Cain: Cain won the recent Florida straw poll.  Yep. Bye Rick.

Newt Gingrich: Yes, he is still running.  I think.  Oh wait, apparently he plans release a new “Contract with America.”  Nothing better to say “new ideas” than to roll out a copy of an almost 20 year old political gimmick. Good one Newt. [How was Hawaii?]

Ron Paul: He won some straw poll. I think.

Rick Santorum: Almost forgot him. ‘Nuf said.

There are some other folks you’ve probably never heard of or seen in a debate because, gee, we already have to give 30 seconds to each person for a response to such mundane questions as “How would you deal with nuclear insecurity in Pakistan?”

So, getting back to the whole “It’s all over but the primaries” thing.  It’s become crystal clear that as Rick Perry flames out like half of his state over the last 9 months, Mitt Romney will be the last man (or woman) standing.  Kind of awe-inspiring to see a man rise to the top purely because he was less dense then all the others as they sank into oblivion.  It’s a shame really, that all those states running the political roller derby for first dibs at casting ballots will have no one to vote for but Mitt.  And all that careful planning to dump the “all or none” delegate counts that allowed the Republican party to anoint a nominee after only getting input from three of the least representative states in the Union will go for naught.

Of course.  I could be wrong.

Next up.  Why the tea party despises Mitt Romney.  For good reason.

September 29, 2011 Posted by | 2012, Herman Cain, Jon Huntsman, Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The tea party hypocrisy revealed – they want to expand taxes for the middle class and working poor and give it to the rich

By now I’m sure you’ve noticed the patten in the tea party’s deceit about taxes.  They really only want low taxes for the richest 1% of Americans and want to expand tax loopholes so that the most profitable corporations can continue to avoid paying taxes (while moving jobs overseas).  But they are for more taxes for the middle class and the working poor.

Back in December 2010 when the Bush tax cuts were scheduled to expire, and long after the President and the Democrats had already agreed to extend the tax cuts for the middle class, the tea party held all of us hostage – even eager to let the middle class tax cuts expire – just to make sure that the richest 1% and the biggest corporations got to avoid taxes.

During the debt ceiling fiasco, again the tea party held the country hostage – even turning down trillions of dollars in spending cuts offered by the President and the Democrats – again all to ensure that the richest 1% and the most profitable corporations can avoid paying taxes or pay less taxes than the middle class on most of their income.

Both of those tea party choices increased the debt and hurt the vast majority of middle class Americans while rewarding corporations for sending jobs overseas.

And now that the President has proposed ways to help grow jobs while also giving tax cuts to the middle class and to small and medium sized businesses who hire workers, guess what the tea party is already saying.  Yep.  The same old story.  No one gets a tax break unless the richest 1% get even more tax breaks.  No small and medium sized businesses (who are the real job creators) get tax breaks unless the most profitable corporations get additional tax loopholes that allow them to hide even more of their massive incomes from taxation (while they ship jobs overseas).

The tea party has called for the poor to pay more taxes, all so the rich can pay even less taxes.

The tea party is against payroll tax breaks that would help the vast majority of working Americans.  Why?  Because the rich don’t pay much in payroll taxes, so the richest 1% wouldn’t benefit.  The tea party wants the middle class and most Americans to finance tax cuts for the richest 1%.

The story is the same every single time.  The tea party is only interested in cutting spending that help the middle class while they fight for spending that helps the big corporations.  The tea party is only interested in reducing taxes for the richest 1% and for the most profitable corporations while they fight to have the poor pay more taxes and against payroll tax relief that disproportionately burdens the working class.

And it is what the Koch brothers want – the tea party working to expand their wealth and the wealth of all their billionaire friends.  All by taking money from the middle class and working poor.

September 13, 2011 Posted by | Tea Party | , | 2 Comments

Abraham Lincoln on the half-score anniversary of 9/11

For some reason this anniversary of 9/11 brings to mind these words spoken by Abraham Lincoln as part of his Gettysburg Address:

“But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate—we cannot consecrate—we cannot hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom— and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

September 10, 2011 Posted by | 9/11 | , , | Leave a comment

Dispelling Myths the Tea Party Tells Itself

Tea partiers like to convince themselves that they are morally superior to everyone else and the only true “right kind of” Americans.  All despite virtually none of what they argue against being true and none of what they say they are arguing for being true either in practice.  Here are some of the myths tea partiers tell each other, and the reality:

The tea party wants to eliminate excessive taxes

False.  The tea party only wants to eliminate taxes for the richest 1% and the biggest corporations. The tea party refused to continue the tax breaks for 98% of Americans unless the rich got their taxes reduced. The tea party wants to tax the working poor (because they all have refrigerators!) and the middle class in order to pay for tax cuts for the richest few. The tea party has refused tax breaks for small and medium sized companies while fighting to continue and even expand tax loopholes that allow the most profitable corporations to avoid paying taxes.

The tea party wants to eliminate the National Debt

False. The tea party has increased the national debt several times already. The latest was the tea party caused credit downgrade, which increased the interest rates the US has to pay on obligations already incurred during the Bush presidency.

The tea party wants to end deficit spending

False. The tea party turned down at least $3 Trillion in spending cuts, all because they wanted to increase the debt by extending temporary tax breaks the Republican party set to expire for the richest 1%.

The tea party wants to protect free markets

False. The tea party has consistently fought to protect subsidies and corporate welfare for the largest and most profitable corporations, even as they send jobs overseas and use tax loopholes to avoid paying taxes.

The tea party wants our Government to abide by the Constitution

False. The tea party has argued many times to repeal or make moot several Constitutional amendments. The tea party also believes that people should have a right to discriminate against others based on their color, in direct violation to both the 14th Amendment of the Constitution and the Civil Rights Act.

The tea party wants the size of the Government reduced

False. The tea party has been more than happy to increase the size of government, as did Reagan, GW Bush, and other Republican Presidents. The Republican-controlled Congress and Presidency of the first 6 years of the 2000s passed several unfunded government mandates, started two wars, and increased government size.  The tea party argues to increase Defense spending despite well documented waste and abuse totaling hundreds of billions of dollars. The tea party also has called for additional Constitutional amendments that would usurp the powers given by the Constitution to Congress.

The tea party believes in the power of the American people

False. The tea party consistently demonstrates that they believe in the power of the richest 1% of Americans and the most profitable corporations. The tea party is constantly calling on the government to require the narrow views of “the right kind of Americans” to be forced on the rest of Americans. The tea party is constantly attacking the power of Americans to have the right to be free from bigotry.  And the tea party wants to repeal the 17th amendment of the Constitution, which guarantees the power of the American people to vote for their representatives in the Senate; the tea party wants to take that power of the people and give it to state lawmakers who are influenced by corporate campaign funding.

The tea party believes Citizens can set their own platform and agendas at a local level

False. The tea party has been quite vocal about setting their narrow agenda and platform to force all of us to conform to their view of what is “right.” The tea party takes its marching orders, was founded by, and is funded by the rich corporate Washington lobbyists.

The tea party wants to end entrenched political parties that are doing nothing but taking our money to keep power

False. The tea party is fighting to increase the wealth of the richest 1% (like the Koch brothers) and the most profitable corporations (like Koch Industries, ExxonMobil, etc). Everything that the tea party has done has been geared toward helping the wealthiest hide more of their money and forcing the middle class and the working poor to carry more of the burden.

Sorry, but facts and actions show what the tea party conservatives are all about. Not bumper sticker platitudes.

September 7, 2011 Posted by | Tea Party | , , , , , , | 4 Comments