Monthly Archives: October 2007

Romney Has the Trifecta, Thompson…Done!

Yesterday ARG released Presidential polls from Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina. For the first time, Mitt Romney leads in all three.

Iowa: Romney-27, Huckabee-19, Giuliani-16, McCain-14, Thompson-8

New Hampshire: Romney-30, Giuliani-23, McCain-17, Huckabee-7, Thompson-5

South Carolina: Romney-29, Giuliani-23, McCain-13, Thompson-10, Huckabee-5

Now, allow me to point out that ARG is less than perfect and I have been extremely critical of their polls in the past. So, I am skeptical of these results, but they are telling. If indeed these are even somewhat reliable they tell the following story:

First, the Mormon issue is becoming less and less of an issue and the evangelical endorsements helped Romney in SC and did not hurt him in NH.

Second, Thompson is in deep, deep trouble. Running 4th in South Carolina??? Likely not accurate, however this is demonstrative of Thompson’s continued slide and loss of favor. He’s done.
Third, Huckabee has a real shot in Iowa, if he can pull off a victory there or at least a solid 2nd place, it could indeed propel him to a win in South Carolina. A state that would prefer to vote for a Southerner.

Fourth, Giuliani, while still strong, looks to have leveled off and will likely not break 25% in any of the states. Bad news for him. It appears that in these three states, the first to get to 30% will win.

Fifth, despite his low national polling, Romney is demonstrating that when the voters get to know him, they like him and are inclined to vote for him.

Here is my Presidential rankings (not personal favorites, but likelyhood to win the nomination):

1. Mitt Romney – Early states mean much, much more than national polls. The question is, is will these early wins be able to propel him in California, Texas and Florida? The big wigs.

2. Rudy Giuliani – Big lead nationally, can he translate that to early states? He is starting to realize that he needs to win early and is putting his chips on New Hampshire. Condensed primary schedule may help him hold onto large Super-duper Tuesday states (CA, TX, NJ, NY) and he has a legitimate shot to win the nomination, without winning any of the traditional big 3.

3. Mike Huckabee – Yes, folks, you read that right. Why is he third? Because he is the only other candidate that has a shot at winning a State. If Huck wins Iowa, he will finish top 3 in other states leading up to South Carolina. Will an Iowa victory and strong showing in New Hampshire or Michigan give him a win in South Carolina? If so, it is now a three man race. All of this is a long shot, but not out of the realm of possibility

4. John McCain– A second place finish in New Hampshire may revive his candidacy. He is already improving nationally and is back to being the candidate he was in 2000. He has a slim shot, but I would say he is all but done.

5. Fred Thompson – He has been more than a disappointment on the campaign trail. The only sign of life he has shown was at the debate. His campaign appearances have been dismal and people realize his boat is a sinking one. You heard it here first: FRED THOMPSON WILL NOT WIN SOUTH CAROLINA. In fact, I will be so bold as to predict he finishes third there; and this will be his highest finish. Fortunately, he doesn’t even want to be President so no skin off of his back. ((Why would you vote for someone who doesn’t want it, Thompson supporters?))

Finally, only three of these candidates can beat Hillary: Romney, Giuliani, and McCain. Thompson does not have the work ethic and Huckabee is too nice (does that make sense?).

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Filed under Candidates, Conservative, Democracy, Election 2008, Fred Thompson, Hillary Clinton, John McCain, Media, Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, Mormon, Mormonism, Politics, Republicans, Ron Paul, Rudy Giuliani

Memo to Pres. Bush: Be Wise with Iran

President Bush,

Currently you are riding somewhere between 30% and 39% in approval ratings among the American public, some fairly recent polling has had you as low as 24%. This is nothing to write home about. The cause of this demise stems from alleged mishandling of Iraq and New Orleans, GOP corruption, Harriet Miers (what was that?), and various other small missteps along the way. Throughout the last 4 years of challenging times for you, I am proud to announce that I was one of those 24% and am still one of the 39%. I can’t say that I was not without my doubts in your administration, certainly there were tough times of trying faith, however I have stood by you and apparently so have many more people and some have even started to jump on your bandwagon. The new Iraq strategy provided by Petraeus is providing you more political capital, the complete ineptitude of the democratic congress has largely overshadowed any issues you have had, and the race for the 2008 election is starting to take the front page stories… in short, things are looking up for you and your legacy.

But don’t screw it up! You are starting to scare me with much of the Iran rhetoric of late, statements from within the Administration (as well as my favorite GOP Presidential candidate) are sounding very much like the rhetoric leading up to the Iraq war in 2002-03. Resorting to force in Iran too soon is the worst thing you could do and would completely ruin your legacy. I understand you want to be doer for good in the world, but this is not the way to go about it. I agree with you that Iran cannot have nuclear weapons, there is no arguing that here. I also agree that Iran is actively pursuing such weapons (as demonstrated by the appointment of hardliner Jalali as the new nuclear negotiator for Iran). However, there is still plenty of time to try diplomatic or, perhaps, other subversive means to quell their quest.

It is obvious that the Ayatollah and Jalali will play the diplomatic game for as long as possible.  They will string us, the UN, and the IAEA along as we try to talk through the issue, all the while developing weapons under our noses. Most conservative pundits and Israel would argue that this is enough to justify a strike. It is not, at least not yet. You have not tried everything, or you have not put enough time into some strategies.

First, continue with severe diplomatic pressure and sanctions. The latter of these will have minimal impact as Russia and China will completely ignore them, but it is the point that matters. Press the UN for more action and insist that the IAEA get unfettered access to all Iranian sites. Basically, do everything you have done up to now.

Second, and most importantly, use what you already have in place to your advantage. A couple of years ago in your state of the union address, you spoke to the Iranian people and gave them your support. Your policy has been to support opposition groups inside and outside of Iran. This is what you are not doing enough of. You need to realize how unique the Iranian people are. About 75% of the Iranian public is under the age of 30, meaning they do not remember the revolution of 1979. It is not personal to them; they don’t have the revolutionary spirit. A majority of these young people despise their government and want a new democratic on in its place. A good percentage even like the U.S. and support you. Do you realize how much power this gives us in Iran? But don’t be foolish into thinking that you cannot lose that support. The Iranian people are also very proud and nationalistic. They still relish in the Persian Empire that was around in 500 BC, they despise being called Arab and Middle-Eastern. An attack on their country from an outsider, regardless of one’s intention will ruin all good will. They will turn to their government and uphold them. Why waste such an opportunity with a premature attack.

You have massive amounts of troops in countries on both of Iran’s eastern and western fronts, you have a large Navy contingent in the Persian Gulf and the Indian ocean. All of this gives you a significant show of force. Additionally, you have the Kurds and Iranian internal opposition groups; your greatest weapons. The Kurdish areas in norther Iraq are, for all intents and purposes, autonomous and doing well economically. This allows them some freedom of movement and shows that they are capable enough for strategic involvement. Northwestern Iran has a province called Kurdistan and is full of Kurds, who would like nothing more than to overthrow the Islamic Republic. Further south in Ahwaz you have Arabic opposition groups, while these groups are likely not pre-disposed to like us, they will likely take our support against the mullahs. Use them. There are Baluchi opposition groups in SE Iran and other Persian groups throughout the country that you can use to our advantage. And, finally, there are moderates in the government that will quitely support you. Perhaps people like former President Khatami.

You have so much opportunity for positive peaceful, or not-so-peaceful but at least without American intervention, change. Do not even consider going to war until these options have been exhausted. Even if there is a violent revolution in Iran like in 1979, at least the Iranian people were the ones to do it. They will be personally invested in it and will hopefully take care to uphold a new democratic government. That is one of the struggles in Iraq, the people don’t own it; it was not their revolution. Do you think the American revolution would have been as strong had France fought our battles for us? Of course not, revolutions are always more successful when brought on by the people themselves. Even if it is with foreign support. Remember the Iranian people are smart, educated, and sophisticated compared to most of the rest of that region. They are not Iraq. It is a whole new ballgame.

In closing, President Bush, I implore you to be wise here. Do not ruin another possibility for change in the Middle-East. I will not support you in a war with Iran without a dire, dire need, and there is not anywhere near enough evidence yet. As of now I predict that in the long term your Presidency will be remembered as one of the best and most influential. It will be Trumanesque – despised in office, yet revered 50 years later. A pre-mature attack against Iran will ruin that.

Steven Swint, Editor-in-Chief

Dry Fly Politics & Mitt Report

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Filed under Afghanistan, Air Force, Anti-War, Army, Conservative, Democracy, Election 2008, Hillary Clinton, Iran, Iraq, Liberal, Liberalism, Military, Mitt Romney, Navy, Politics, Progress, Progressive, Republicans, terrorism, War

This is Why I Like Mitt

Mitt Romney’s Campaign sent out the following press release today about the American home and family.  This, coupled with his uncomparable success in the private sector, is the precise reason why I am supporting him for President.  Many people call Mitt fake and refer to him as lacking substance.  Certainly, I think there is adequate evidence to support such a claim, however on the issue of family there is not.  His family may seem “beaverish”; from a different area, but they are not fake.  What you see is really what it is.  I have met various people who know Mitt from his time as an LDS Stake President in Boston; they have nothing but positive things to say about his family and he a man.  This is what we need in Washington.  A man of integrity and who will stand up for the basic structure of American society: the Family.

STRATEGY FOR A STRONGER AMERICA:
THE FOUR WALLS OF THE IOWA HOME

“And it is the strength of this nation’s families that ultimately determines America’s strength in the family of nations.  That is why I believe that the most important work for the future of America is the work that goes on within the four walls of the American home.” – Governor Romney (Gov. Mitt Romney, Remarks At The Family Research Council, Washington, D.C., 10/19/07)


Governor Romney’s Conservative Plan To Strengthen And Empower Iowa Families:

Today, In Iowa, Governor Mitt Romney Outlined His Conservative Plan To Strengthen Families In Iowa.  There is much our nation can do to strengthen families because our future is determined not just by heads of state but also by heads of households.  As President, Governor Romney will ensure that Washington stands alongside parents in Iowa who are building stronger families.

  • Governor Romney Believes Our Nation And Iowa Are Stronger When We Have Stronger Families.  The source of most of society’s social problems can be traced to a breakdown of the family.  Iowa is wealthier, healthier and stronger when it has strong families.  It is the strength of our families in Iowa and across the country that ultimately determines America’s strength in the family of nations. 

WALL #1:  Championing Marriage:

Governor Romney Will Champion A Federal Marriage Amendment To Protect Marriage As The Union Of A Man And A Woman.  In Massachusetts, Governor Romney fought to promote traditional marriage after the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court legalized same-sex marriage.  The importance of defending marriage was made even more critical with the recent Iowa court decision on same-sex marriage.  Governor Romney believes marriage is primarily about the development and nurturing of children.  Every child deserves a mother and a father. 

  • Governor Romney Is The Only Major Republican Candidate Who Supports A Federal Amendment Because It Is The Only Way To Truly Protect Marriage.
  • Governor Romney Spoke Out Against The Iowa Court Decision Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage.  “The ruling in Iowa today is another example of an activist court and unelected judges trying to redefine marriage and disregard the will of the people as expressed through Iowa’s Defense of Marriage Act.    This once again highlights the need for a Federal Marriage Amendment to protect the traditional definition of marriage as between one man and one woman.”  (Romney For President, “Governor Mitt Romney On Iowa’s Defense Of Marriage Act,” Press Release, http://mittromney.com/News/Press-Releases/Iowa_DOMA , 10/25/07)

Governor Romney Will Realign Government Incentives To Encourage Marriage, Not Penalize It.  Today, a single mother with child care who marries the father of her child can lose as much as $6,000 a year in government benefits.  Their combined incomes can disqualify them for Medicaid, housing vouchers, food stamps, and welfare. It is time to make fathers responsible for their child’s health and care. Furthermore, we need to end the tax penalty on married couples. 

WALL #2:  Protecting Our Children:

Governor Romney Will Fight The Modern Plague Of Internet Pornography.  We must clean up the culture that surrounds our children across the country.  Computer pornography has given new meaning to the words “home invasion.”  As President, Governor Romney will work to ensure that every home computer has an easy to engage pornography filter so that parents can protect their children. 

  • Governor Romney Has Proposed A New “One Strike, You’re Ours” Law Toughening Sentences Against Online Predators.  Predators who use the Internet to sexually assault children will be subject to a new “One Strike, You’re Ours” law of imposing long prison sentences followed by lifetime GPS tracking.  According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, as of April 2007, there were over 6,000 convicted sex offenders in Iowa.

Governor Romney Will Take The Campaign Against Drugs To A New Level.  We can do a better job educating our kids on the perils of drug use.  Parents may be the best anti-drug there is.  A study last month showed that young children who come from homes where families had dinner together five times a week or more were 1/6th as likely to have used drugs.

Governor Romney Will Work To Better Schools And Better Education For Our Children.  Governor Romney believes in school choice and that every child should have an equal opportunity to have a good education.  He supported school choice and fought for charter schools in Massachusetts, and he will do the same thing in Washington.

  • For Parents Home-Schooling Their Children In Iowa, Governor Romney Proposes A Federal Tax Credit To Help Defray The Cost Of Home-Schooling Expenses.
  • Governor Romney Will Help Iowa Parents Save For Their Children’s College Education.  He has proposed a middle-class tax-free savings program for every Iowa family earning $200,000 a year or less.  Under his plan, their tax rate on interest, dividends and capital gains will be absolutely zero.

WALL #3:  Strengthening And Empowering Families:

Governor Romney Will Convene A White House Summit On Strengthening Families.  As President, Governor Romney will act to strengthen the family, particularly in the inner cities of America.  This White House Summit will be a springboard to develop new initiatives to strengthen families across the country. 

Governor Romney Will Reinstate The Family Impact Statement.  In an effort to keep government from doing things that hurt and weaken families in America, President Ronald Reagan issued an Executive Order establishing a requirement that new government policies and programs be subject to the Family Impact Statement.  However, this Executive Order was rescinded by President Clinton.  As President, Governor Romney will reinstate the Family Impact Statement and initiate an audit of all current programs and policies which may negatively impact families. 

  • Governor Romney Will Support The Rights Of Iowa Parents Who Are Not Always Consulted About Decisions Affecting Their Children.  The work of being a parent is hard enough without the government making it harder.   

Governor Romney Will Ensure That Families In Iowa Have Health Insurance.  Using proven, free-market principles, Governor Romney’s plan will ensure every citizen has health insurance, without new taxes, a government-run HillaryCare style system or socialized medicine.  More than 270,000 people, or nine percent of Iowa’s population, lacks health insurance.  In Massachusetts, Governor Romney put conservative principles to work and the number of uninsured has been cut in half.

Governor Romney Will Defend Our Religious Heritage.  As President, Governor Romney will ensure that his Attorney General defends the free exercise of religion.  The United States is a nation under God and should remain that way. 

As President, Governor Romney Will Lead By Example.  The First Family represents America to the world and represents America to our children and grandchildren.  As President, Governor Romney’s family will live up to a higher standard and always try to make the American people proud.

WALL #4: Promoting A Culture Of Life:

Governor Romney Will Be A Pro-Life President.  Governor Romney will appoint and fight for judges who follow the law and Constitution, who understand judicial restraint and will not legislate from the bench.  As President, Governor Romney will promote pro-life polices.  He will oppose taxpayer-funded abortion, partial-birth abortion, abortion in military clinics and funding of abortion in international aid programs.  He will work to ban embryonic cloning.  He will work to increase adoptions by making the adoption tax credit permanent and raising awareness about embryonic adoption, or snowflake babies.

Read Governor Romney’s Full Strategy For A Stronger America :

To read more about Governor Romney’s agenda to change Washington, please click on the Strategy for a Stronger America, a compilation of his policy proposals for conservative change and to meet the new generation of challenges confronting our nation.  Since January 2007, Governor Romney has outlined more than 50 different policy proposals.  From defeating violent Jihadists to protecting traditional values, Governor Romney believes we can build a stronger America by taking Washington apart and putting it back together based on conservative principles that strengthen our national defense, our economy and our families.

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Filed under Candidates, Election 2008, Family, LDS, Mitt Romney, Mormon, Mormonism, Politics, Religion, Republicans

Mitt Needs Your Help

Good morning folks, I have a few friends in Virginia who are working hard to make sure that Mitt Romney gets on the ballot for the Virginia primary.  In Virginia, unlike most states, candidates are placed on the ballot by petition.  I believe 10,000 signatures are needed, including a set amount from each county.   As all of us are (or should be) ardent supporters of democracy, it behooves us to ensure that all serious candidates for office are on the ballot.   I ask you and implore you to help make sure that Mitt Romney is on the ballot so that the people of Virginia have a choice in who is their next President.    So if you are a resident of Virginia, a Mitt supporter or not, a Republican or Democrat, please contact the following email to sign the petition.   It should be pointed out that signing the petition is not an endorsement of a candidate.  

Contact: Virginia@mittromney.com

Thanks,

Steve Swint, Editor-in-Chief mittreport.com; dryflypolitics.com

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Filed under Candidates, Conservative, Democracy, Democrats, Election 2008, Law, Mitt Romney, Politics, Progress, Progressive, Republicans, Romney

Iran’s New Hardline Nuclear Negotiator

Last week, Iran’s nuclear negotiator, Ali Larijani, resigned his post due to a complete inability to work with President Mahmud Ahmadinejad. This alone is terrible news for those seeking a peaceful resolution to the nuclear standoff. While Larijani is not considered a reformer and is indeed among the more conservative officials in the government, he is very pragmatic and firmly believed that the best resolution was through negotiation. To lose a person like this in the negotiations is quite detrimental. (Contrary to American belief, not all Iranian officials are nuts like Mahmud.)

To compound the problem is the person chosen to replace Larijani, Said Jalali. Jalali is a close ally to Ahmadinejad; perhaps even considered a right hand man. He fully supports Mahmud’s hard line stance on the nuclear program; intending to pursue it regardless of the cares of the outside world. Currently, Jalali is saying all the right things; fully intending to cooperate with the IAEA and international community to find a diplomatic solution. However, if indeed he is from the Ahmadinejad school of diplomacy, he will say one thing and do the opposite.

Said Jalali

In Ahmadinejad’s administration there have been two camps of Iranian political power; the Ahmadinejad wing and the Larijani wing. The latter, while still conservative, is much more pragmatic and really wielded the true power in Iran. Included in this wing are such prominent Iranian politicians as former President Rafsanjani and Hassan Ruhani, Iran’s National Security Advisor. In between these two camps is Ayatollah Khamenai, occasionally siding with the hardliners and occasionally with the pragmatists. Sadly, now it looks as if he has committed to Ahmadinejad and his ilk; indeed there is now a consolidation of power around the President.

The thing most American’s (including the President of Columbia University) failed to realize about the Iranian government is that the President is really just a figurehead. He has limited real power. He has no right to dictate foreign policy or be involved in internal affairs. His is primarily domestic authority, of which most decisions have to be ratified by the Council of Experts and the Ayatollah. So for people in America to have been so afraid of Ahmadinejad and for the President of one of America’s most prestigious universities to call him a dictator, was really ignorant and reflected poorly on us as a people. However, now there is reason to fear, not because of Ahmadinejad per se, but because the Ayatollah seems to have completely joined his camp, and the Ayatollah is the true arbiter of Iranian power and foreign policy. The chance for a peaceful resolution to the nuclear crisis has diminished extensively.

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Filed under Atomic, Bush, Election 2008, Iran, Law, Military, Nuclear, Politics

Romney Surges in S.C., Florida

In vastly underreported election news, recent polls are showing a Romney surge in both South Carolina and Florida. Of course no one knows this because no one has mentioned it. We would all think that Romney was flopping around like a fish out of water in the Southern states according to some recent posts that have been written about each state. Of course, logic would tell us that Romney should not be doing well in either of these states: He is Mormon, Slick, and a NorEaster. Nevertheless, he is polling well and will likely be right in the thick of the races come January. Here are the recent polls:

South Carolina

Oct 02, Insider Advantage Poll: Thompson 21%, Romney and Giuliani 16%

Sep 26-29, ARG Poll: Romney 26%, Giuliani 23%, Thompson 10%

Sep 26-27, Rasmussen: Thompson 24%, Giuliani 20%, Romney 15%

Additionally, the Romney campaign performed an internal poll, here are the results:

Romney Internal Poll: Thompson: 24%, Romney 20%, Giuliani 15%

So, in South Carolina Romney is right in the thick of the fight. It appears that the recent condemnation of Giuliani by Christian Right leaders is having a detrimental effect and that the advertising that Romney has been airing over the last month is causing some movement. However, it should be noted that the same article that reported the Romney internal poll caveats the results by saying that this was before the Bob Jones endorsement. A separat poll says that 27% of South Carolinans are more likely to support Romney due to this, but 32% are less likely. It will be interesting to see what effect the evangelical endorsements will have.

In Florida, Romney also continues to surge, and Florida is arguably more important a victory for any of the candidates. Here are the recent polls:

Oct 1-8, Quinnipiac: Giuliani: 27%, Thompson 19%, Romney 17%

Oct. 2, Insider Advantage: Giuliani 29%, Thompson 19%, Romney 16%

Granted, these polls are nothing to get thrilled over as Giuliani has a sizeable lead. However, all previous polling had Romney hovering between 7% and 10% in Florida. So a 6-7 point jump in a month is significant and he is really the only one gaining steam in these states, whereas Giuliani and Thompson are plateauing.

It should also be mentioned that all the hubub about Huckabee or Thompson surging against Romney in Iowa should be somewhat muted by the most recent Iowa poll that gave Romney an impressive 14 point lead:

Oct 10-14, Strategic Vision Poll: Romney-27, Giuliani-13, Huckabee-12, Thompson-10.

I wonder if this will get the coverage that the poll placing Huckabee within 6 points will get. I doubt it.

All in all, while Romney has stalled in some places, so have all the candidates. The race is a real crap shoot, there is far from a difinitive front runner. However, it still looks to be a Giuliani-Romney finale.

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Filed under Democracy, Election 2008, Fred Thompson, John McCain, Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, Mormon, Politics, Religion, Republicans, Rudy Giuliani

Dr. Don Wilton of the So. Baptist Convention Endorses Mitt Romney

This morning the evangelical support continues to roll in for GOP Presidential candidate Mitt Romney.  Dr. Wilton is the former President of the Southern Baptist Convention.

Boston, MAToday, Dr. Don Wilton, the immediate-past President of the South Carolina Baptist Convention, announced his support for Governor Mitt Romney and his campaign for the presidency.  Dr. Wilton’s endorsement is another indication of Governor Romney’s growing support among faith and values leaders in South Carolina and across the nation.

“I am proud to stand alongside Governor Romney as he pursues our nation’s highest office.  His values are my values – protecting the sanctity of human life, defending marriage and strengthening the family.  We need someone in Washington who will stand up for traditional families and Governor Romney is that person,” said Dr. Wilton.  “While we may not agree on theology, Governor Romney and I agree that this election is about our country heading in the right direction.  Governor Romney is the best candidate to stand for conservative values in Washington.”

With today’s announcement, Governor Romney said, “As conservatives, Dr. Wilton and I believe that our nation is stronger when we build stronger families.  I look forward to working with him in South Carolina to ensure that Washington stands for families, life and marriage.”

Background On Dr. Don Wilton:

Dr. Don Wilton Is Senior Pastor At The First Baptist Church Of Spartanburg, South Carolina, And The Immediate Past President Of The South Carolina Baptist Convention.  Dr. Wilton was the 2006 South Carolina Baptist Convention President.  He has served in churches in South Africa, Mississippi and Louisiana.  He began his pastorate at the First Baptist Church in Spartanburg in 1993.  His church currently has 6,900 members.  A former faculty member at the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, he currently teaches at the Billy Graham School of Evangelism and the Billy Graham Training Center at the Cove.  Additionally, Dr. Wilton serves as President of the Encouraging Word Broadcast Ministry, which televises nationwide.

In addition to having authored numerous articles, he has written and published five books, including his most recent The Absolute Certainty of Life After Death.  Dr. Wilton and his wife Karyn have three children. 

It will be interesting to see what impact these evangelical endorsements have on the Romney campaign.  Some may be turned off by them, however I think far more will be turned on to Mitt.  Look for Romney to have a significant bump in the South.  Also, pay attention to New Hampshire voters. They are far less positively affected by the evangelical movement, does this have a negative effect there?

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Filed under Candidates, Christian, Christianity, Democracy, Election 2008, Mitt Romney, Politics, Religion, Republicans, Romney, Rudy Giuliani