Archive for the ‘Powell’ Category

Republicans Are Not Dead Yet (And Not Extremists Either, Polls Show)

May 10, 2009

Within hours of Arlen Specter’s Democrat defection last Tuesday, the press pronounced the Republican Party dead.

All three broadcast evening news programs told their viewers that Specter was forced out by the right-wing of the GOP, with NBC’s Kelly O’Donnell calling the moment “a seismic shift.”

By Noel Sheppard
Associate Editor, Newsbusters.org

Her colleague Chuck Todd said on the following morning’s “Today” show, “[F]or the Republican Party it’s devastating, not just to their hopes of slowing President Obama’s agenda in Congress, but for what it says about the future of the GOP.”

Two days later, Newsweek’s Evan Thomas proclaimed on PBS’s “Inside Washington”: “I don’t think the Republicans would appreciate the comparison, but they’re exactly like the Labor Party in England in the 1970s. They’re letting their extremists take them straight down.”

Related:
Cheney Joins Limbaugh, Excludes Colin Powell From Republican Fold; McCain, Gingrich Favor “Bigger Tent”

But the critical diagnoses didn’t just come from liberal media members. Former Reagan speechwriter Peggy Noonan said in a Wall Street Journal piece Saturday, “In the party now there is too much ferocity, and bloody-mindedness.”

On the following day’s “Meet the Press,” former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough told David Gregory, “We have not been conservative as a party, we’ve been radical.”

Yet, all this hand-wringing ignored some realities about the current American ethos that have absolutely nothing to do with Specter’s act of self-preservation, for on the same day the senior Senator from Pennsylvania announced his latest strategic metamorphosis, Rasmussen Reports revealed Republicans leading Democrats in a generic tracking poll of the 2010 Congressional elections.

In something practically out of a Marx Brothers movie, while the press performed last rites over the GOP’s supposedly rotting corpse, 41 percent of Rasmussen’s respondents said they’d vote for their district’s Republican candidate as opposed to 38 percent backing an unnamed Democrat.

According to Rasmussen, “Democrats are currently at their lowest level of support in the past year while Republicans are at the high water mark.”

Sound like the GOP is dead to you?

Further evidence of the premature nature of last week’s post mortems came Thursday when the Pew Research Center released findings of its must recent survey concerning the nation’s views on abortion and gun control.

Quite contrary to the conventional wisdom that Obama’s election and Specter’s defection signaled an end to conservatism, Pew, for the first time in its history, found almost as many Americans believing it’s more important to protect gun rights than legislate stricter laws over such (45 percent to 49 percent respectively).

This represented – using Kelly O’Donnell’s words! – a seismic shift, for a year ago 58 percent felt controlling gun ownership was more important, while only 37 percent took the NRA’s view.

Similar changes in the nation’s attitude towards abortion were identified by Pew as the number saying it should be legal in all or most cases now stands at 46 percent. This was down from 54 percent last August, and represented the first time since at least the mid-’90s that such responses weren’t in the majority.

Read the rest:
http://foxforum.blogs.foxnews.c
om/2009/05/07/sheppard_specter/

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Cheney Joins Limbaugh, Excludes Colin Powell From Republican Fold; McCain, Gingrich Favor “Bigger Tent”

May 10, 2009

Former Vice President Dick Cheney denounced former Secretary of State Colin Powell saying that Powell was no longer a Republican.

Cheney said he’d go with the advice on being a Republican from Rush Limbaugh.

Read more and see video:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2
009/05/10/cheney-swipes-p
owell-side_n_201324.html

This should come as no suprise as Dick Cheney had a hand in sending Powell to the United Nations to make the case for the invasion of Iraq on February 5, 2003; then Cheney had a hand in getting Powell out of the Bush Administration a few years later.


Colin Powell

In September 2005, Powell was asked about the speech during an interview with Barbara Walters and responded that it was a “blot” on his record. He went on to say, “It will always be a part of my record. It was painful. It’s painful now.”

We are not sure the Cheney “my way or the highway” view of the Republican party will be helpful.  Cheney and Rush represent a shrinking party if polls are to be believed.

Today on ABC’s “This Week,”  John McCain said the Republicans needed a “bigger tent” and he said he loved and welcomed even his daughter’s pro gay views into the Republican Party.
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“We’re in a word game here,” McCain said about critical comments from former Vice President Dick Cheney and others that the party shouldn’t “moderate.”

Asked if Republicans should welcome candidates and voters who support abortion rights or gay marriage, McCain said, “It means that we can have people in our party who do not have the same views on specific issues as long as we share common principles.”

“We have to understand that maybe a candidate that can win in one part of our country, like the South, may not be able to get elected in Pennsylvania,” McCain said.

McCain’s daughter Meghan won headlines for criticizing conservative Republicans for fighting to deny marriage rights to gay couples.

“I don’t agree with my daughter on specific issues,” McCain said on Sunday, “but I do believe there is a place for her in the Republican Party.”

Newt Gingrich made similar noises about a bigger tent on “Fox News Sunday,” with Chris Wallace.


Gingrich recently on Meet the Press

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From Fox News

Colin Powell has left the Republican Party, former Vice President Dick Cheney charged Sunday. 

Cheney had tough words for the Bush administration’s former secretary of state when asked about the controversy over Powell’s recent suggestion that the GOP move more to the center. He was asked specifically about conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh’s call for Powell to join the Democrats. 

“I think my take on it was Colin had already left the party. I didn’t know he was still a Republican,” Cheney said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.” 

Asked to clarify, Cheney noted that Powell endorsed Barack Obama, a Democrat, for president shortly before the general election. 

“I assumed that that is some indication of his loyalty and his interest,” Cheney said. 

Limbaugh criticized Powell last week for saying the Republican Party is in trouble and needs to be more moderate, urging Powell to officially switch parties. Powell had also said divisive figures like Limbaugh are hurting the party. 

Asked which spokesman better stands for the GOP, Cheney said he’d go with Limbaugh over Powell. 

Read the rest:
http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009
/05/10/cheney-powell-left-republican-party/

See also Politico:
http://www.politico.com/blogs/politicolive/