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What Does The Tea Party Represent?—Will Centrists & Independents Support Tea Party Backed Republicans?

Above you see what the Tea Party presents itself to the public. The billboard you see here was paid for by a Tea Party group in Iowa.

Is President Obama as bad as Hitler or Stalin? Is he for genocide and putting people in camps?

I’m very liberal. I’m not going to vote for any Republicans in the upcoming November elections. I’m upfront about this fact.

If you’re somebody who could vote either way depending on the candidates and the office up for election, you’ve got to decide what you’re going to do.

Republican Senator David Vitter of Louisiana, who is up for reelection, recently said that he would support lawsuits looking to see if President Obama was really born in the United States.

The economy is a mess and Louisiana is under siege from all the BP oil, yet this is what Senator Vitter is talking about. This is how beholden Republicans are to the Tea Party/far right wing agenda.

A few days ago the NAACP passed a resolution saying that the Tea Party has racist elements.

Let’s say you don’t agree with this or that you don’t like the NAACP. Fine.

See what you think, however, of the Tea Party response to the NAACP’s assertion

“You’re dealing with people who are professional race-baiters, who make a very good living off this kind of thing. They make more money off of race than any slave trader ever. It’s time groups like the NAACP went to the trash heap of history where they belong with all the other vile racist groups that emerged in our history,”

The NAACP is not some revolutionary outfit.  They don’t profit off race as did slave traders. They are not a “vile racist group” like some other groups in our American history.

The Tea Party, lead by Glen Beck, is going to hold a rally next month at the Lincoln Memorial on the anniversary of Martin Luther King’s I Have A Dream speech.

Why would the Tea Party they do this other than to mock the memory of the day? What’s the point but to anger people? A rally could be held any other day and any other place.

It seems apparent Democrats will lose seats in Congress in 2010.  Democrats are not going to be promoting a big agenda in the next session of Congress regardless of whether they hold on to their Congressional majorities or not.  

The Republicans seem to be almost fully under the thumb of their most extreme ideological supporters.

Such as the Texas Congressman, Joe Barton, who apologized to BP.

Such as Republican Kentucky U.S. Senate nominee Rand Paul who said that private business places should not be forced to serve black people.

Such as Republican Nevada U.S. Senate nominee Sharron Angle who seemingly has called for violence if Democrats hold on to Congress.

I predict that these Tea Party supporters will prove to be far to the right, that many politically centrist and independent Americans will choose not to support Republicans in the 2010 elections.

The Tea Party represents an angry ideological extremism out of step with the majority of Americans.

July 15, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Instead Of Sticking To Guns, Congressman Joe Barton Apologizes For BP Remarks—If Barton Had Been At The Alamo, He Would Have Run Like A Coward

Republican U.S Representative Joe Barton of Texas has said that BP is a wronged party in that it has been forced by the White House to pay $20 billion into a fund to assist persons who have economically impacted by the  BP/Transocean Gulf of Mexico oil disaster.

(Above–Mr. Barton)

He said this because this was his belief.

Mr. Barton was wrong. Our Federal Government has the right to protect citizens from corporate wrongs. Our government has the right to protect and promote the general welfare.

Mr. Barton would have our fellow Americans at the whims of corporations that put money before people.

This said, rather than sticking by his Tea Party/Republican views, Mr. Barton instead apologized.

Gutless.

(Above–A painting of Mr Barton. Look how distinguished he is when not running away from his beliefs. The painting is by Laurel Boeck. )

It seems that Mr. Barton holds no convictions that stand up to public criticism.

Of what use is Mr. Barton to anyone?—Except to the  big money interests he helps when nobody is looking and he can escape the public anger he fears so much.

If Mr. Barton had been at the Alamo, he would have deserted.

Mr. Barton represents the 6th district of Texas. Here is a map of this district. It is a largely rural district.

Here is Mr. Barton’s entry in the informative Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress.

(Below—The 1903 painting “The Fall Of The Alamo” by Robert Jenkins Onderdonk. Mr. Barton would have deserted well before the point you see in the painting.)

June 18, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

What Does Congressman Gene Green Need With All That PAC Money?

What exactly does Houston-area Congressman Gene Green (above), a Democrat, need with$842,656 in PAC money? This is the amount of PAC money Congressman Green raised in 2007-08.  This PAC money was 78% of all the money Mr. Green raised in this election cycle. Overall, Mr. Green was fifth in the entire U.S. House  in 2008 for money given by PACS as a percentage of all campaign funds raised.   

Mr. Green serves the 29th U.S. House District of Texas. The district includes, among other places, much of the Houston Ship Channel and other parts of Houston, portions of Pasadena, Baytown and Humble, as a well as South Houston and Jacinto City. Here is a profile of the district from Mr. Green’s office. 

These PAC statistics are from a recent USA Today story. 

Two Texas Republicans, Joe Barton and Kevin Brady were the PAC champions. Mr. Barton, of Ennis, got 88% of his money from PACS while Mr. Brady, of The Woodlands, came in next at 86%.  Overall PACS spent $416 million on federal elections in 2008.

You can click here and get a picture of where the money Mr. Green raised in 2008 came from. Below is a list of various industry groups that donated to Mr. Green for the most recent election. 

Health Professionals $168,396
Oil & Gas $84,500
Lawyers/Law Firms $77,472
Electric Utilities $57,949
Industrial Unions $52,750
Building Trade Unions $52,000
Chemical & Related Manufacturing $50,538
Transportation Unions $40,500
TV/Movies/Music $40,500
Pharmaceuticals/Health Products $34,600
Automotive $19,000
Beer, Wine & Liquor $17,500
Lobbyists $17,250
Telephone Utilities $17,000
Sea Transport $16,500
Misc Energy $15,000
Public Sector Unions $15,000
Telecom Services & Equipment $14,000
Misc Unions $13,500
Retail Sales $13,000

Just what does Rep. Green need with all this money from all these groups? His 2008 Republican opponent raised just over $14,000. Mr. Green has won reelection with almost 75% of the vote in the last two elections. In 2004 he won with 94%.

Maybe what Mr. Green wishes to do is scare off any potential Hispanic primary challenger in a district that is two-thirds Hispanic. Now I know it would be shocking if Mr. Green was taking advantage of money from the alcohol industry and the pharmaceutical industry to scare off potential Hispanic opposition in a two-thirds Hispanic district, but these things do happen.

(Local gasbag Marc Campos has been trying to stir-up a primary fight   for Congresswoman Shelia Jackson Lee. That’s his right and I don’t care one way or another, but if his goal is to increase Hispanic representation in the Houston-area, a subject he often discusses with varying degrees of bluster, the 29th might seem his better chance. C’mon Marc– Find a candidate for this one! )  

Mr. Green has, according to the 2008 Almanac of American Politics, voted  for a bill to roll back subsidies for the oil industry. It’s not that Mr. Green is at the total beck-and-call of the groups that give him money. It’s rarely that simple with these guys. (At least in any way you can pin down.)  Though I wager campaign contributions may well gain access to speak to Mr. Green and senior members of his staff.

Here is some information on Mr. Green’s voting record.

The issue is that Mr. Green uses his incumbency to scare off challengers and that he is such a willing participant  in a system that, while legal, is rotten. This should not be the program. It would be of value for a primary opponent of any ethnicity to take on Mr. Green in 2010 and to bring these issues to greater public attention.

March 3, 2009 Posted by | Houston, Politics, Texas | , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments