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Posts tagged ‘Rick Perry’

Ted Cruz Hints He Might Vote for ‘Terrific’ Rick Perry in 2016.


Image: Ted Cruz Hints He Might Vote for 'Terrific' Rick Perry in 2016

By Lisa Barron

Sen. Ted Cruz says Texas Gov. Rick Perry is “terrific,” despite the Republican governor’s past swipes at the state’s junior senator for his involvement in the government shutdown, among other things.

Cruz told the Dallas Morning News in a recent interview that under Perry, the Lone Star State‘s economy has been “remarkable.” He even suggested he might vote for Perry in the GOP primary should the governor decide to repeat his 2012 bid for the White House in 2016.

“Rick Perry’s been a terrific governor,” he said, adding: “I can tell you this: as a voter, the person for whom I intend to vote in the 2016 Republican primary is whoever is standing up and leading, effectively fighting for free-market principles and the Constitution.”

Perry, who has not announced whether he will seek the presidency again, has insulted Cruz in recent months. During a trip to Israel and England in October, he called the government shutdown in October that was championed by his fellow Republican “political theater” and told the Washington Times that the senator’s name had not been mentioned overseas.

Cruz has also been mentioned as a possible 2016 GOP presidential candidate, but a November survey by Public Policy Polling found both good and bad news for the tea party favorite.

While he is by far the top choice of Texas Republicans to be the party’s presidential candidate in 2016, 50 percent of all Texans say Cruz has been bad for the state’s reputation, compared to 37 percent who think he’s been good for it.

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© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

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Dallas Billionaire, GOP Supporter Harold Simmons Dead at 82.


Dallas billionaire and heavyweight GOP political donor Harold Simmons, who has given millions of dollars to Republican candidates, including Texas Gov. Rick Perry, has died. He was 82.

Simmons, born to two school teachers in East Texas, became one of the richest men in the country with interests ranging from energy to chemicals. A spokesman for Simmons, Chuck McDonald, says Simmons died Saturday in Dallas. He says he does not know the cause of death.

Simmons’ wife, Annette Simmons, tells The Dallas Morning News her husband died at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

Perry called Simmons “a true Texas giant” who rose from humble beginnings.

Over the years, Simmons has donated tens of millions of dollars, including to charities, education groups and a Dallas medical center.

Simmons, along with Texas businessman Bob Perry, were among the last of an era of GOP megadonors. Perry died earlier this year at age 80.

While the overwhelming amount of Simmons’ donations were to Republican candidates and conservative causes, he recently donated to Planned Parenthood and to a Dallas LGBT center.

The Center for Public Integrity ranked him the second highest donor in the 2011-12 election cycle, giving almost $31 million along with his wife. They also gave to super PACS supporting Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry, Politico reports.

He started his business career with a single drug store that he developed into a chain before selling it to Eckerd. His net worth at the time of his death was $10 billion, according to Forbes, which ranked him the 40th richest person in America.

Simmons also saw his share of trouble. He was fined $19,800 for contributing above the then-federal limit of $25,000 per person. And in the mid-1990s he almost lost his fortune when his daughters sued him over a trust he had established and named himself the sole trustee.

In 2010, D magazine reported that a subsidiary of his company, Contran, had multiple lawsuits filed over environmental practices.

“Harold Simmons was one of my best friends, and it’s never easy to say goodbye to close friends,” businessman T. Boone Pickens told The Dallas Morning News. “Harold accomplished so much in his life. He was a passionate person — passionate about his family, his business, philanthropy and politics.”

“Harold Simmons was a true Texas giant, rising from humble beginnings and seizing the limitless opportunity for success we so deeply cherish in our great state,” Texas Gov. Rick Perry said.

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Source: Newsmax.com

Gov. Walker’s ‘Third Way’ Medicaid Plan Criticized as 2016 Maneuver.


Image: Gov. Walker's 'Third Way' Medicaid Plan Criticized as 2016 Maneuver

By Melissa Clyne

 

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s proposed “third way” Medicaid option to make sure his state’s residents have insurance coverage is a maneuver some political pundits claim is designed to lay the groundwork for a 2016 presidential bid by the Republican.

Walker’s plan to turn down federal dollars offered to expand Medicaid coverage in the Badger State would actually increase its rolls by more than 80,000 adults, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Currently, Wisconsin offers one of the most sweeping Medicaid programs in the country, covering adults making up to twice the federal poverty level. The proposed Walker plan would cover only those earning at or below the poverty level — $11,490 annually for a single person — freeing up money to open enrollments, which have been frozen since 2009, when spending caps forced the suspension of new enrollees.

The move, which could help raise his profile during a presidential run, allows Walker to tout the conservative position of opposing Obamacare while appealing to a broader base of voters concerned with getting healthcare coverage.

Walker’s political capital increased after surviving a 2012 recall election brought on by Democrats angry over Walker’s decision to limit the collective bargaining rights of state employees.

Medicaid expansion became optional under a 2012 Supreme Court ruling. The federal government has guaranteed financing states’ expansion costs through 2016 and at least 90 percent afterward.

But some GOP governors, including Rick Perry of Texas, don’t trust the promise. Perry rejected the expansion, arguing that states would ultimately get stuck footing the bill. Ohio’s John Kasich is taking the federal money while governors in Pennsylvania and Tennessee have tried to get the federal Medicaid money but use it to expand private coverage, the Journal reported Wednesday.

Though Walker’s plan reduces the number of Wisconsin residents who would qualify for Medicaid, the 77,000 people losing coverage would qualify for subsidies with monthly premiums less than $20, Kaiser Health News reports.

“You’re going to hear some detractors claim that moving people to the private market or to the exchanges isn’t affordable,” Walker says. “I think most people would find it hard to imagine that with the tax subsidies, that $19 a month is somehow not affordable. I think it is.”

Walker’s “third way” option “allows him to combat criticism either for accepting the federal money or blocking a Medicaid expansion,” according to the Journal.

“In our state, we didn’t take that false choice,” Walker said. “We picked a third option. For the first time in our state’s history, everyone in poverty will be covered.”

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© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Walker Seen As GOP’s Alternative to Christie in 2016.


Image: Walker Seen As GOP's Alternative to Christie in 2016

Many Republican activists, citing Congress‘ deep unpopularity, say they want a governor to be their next presidential nominee. The buzz centers on New Jersey’s Chris Christie for now, but Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is using a national book tour to try to climb into the 2016 conversation.

A small but potentially potent group of GOP insiders say he’s a can-do governor with Christie’s good qualities, and few of Christie’s downsides.

Everything depends on Walker winning re-election next year. If he does, he can join Christie in casting himself as a two-term Republican governor who thrived in a Democratic-leaning state.

Then, Walker’s supporters say, his more conservative stances on several issues would help him in GOP primaries. And Walker’s calm Midwestern demeanor, they say, will play better in Iowa, South Carolina and other places than would Christie’s penchant for bombast and confrontation.

Plenty of potential hurdles stand in Walker’s way, as they do for other Republican governors, such as John Kasich of Ohio. They are not well-known outside their states. And they are untested on national stages, which have chewed up many once-promising governors, including Texas’ Rick Perry and New York’s Rudy Giuliani.

Still, some well-known Republicans say Walker deserves a bit of the attention that showered Christie after his easy re-election this month.

“Walker is the type of leader who is the future of our party,” said Fred Malek, a Republican fundraiser and activist since the Nixon administration. He said Walker can appeal to an array of Republicans and unite the party, which has lost the popular vote in five of the last six presidential races.

Walker has used TV, radio and other forums this week to promote his new book, “Unintimidated,” while also subtly pushing his presidential potential. At a conservative gathering Thursday in Washington, a friendly interviewer helped him make his best possible contrast with Christie.

Marc Thiessen, Walker’s co-author, said Christie “is moderate in policy and immoderate in temperament. You are very moderate in temperament but immoderate in policy.”

Walker didn’t quarrel with the premise. “Chris and I are good friends,” he said, and both of them stay true to their principles.

“The demeanor you have does have an impact,” Walker said. In New Jersey, he said, “the way that Chris has reacted to things actually fits.”

“I just have a Midwestern filter, that’s the difference,” Walker said. “I’m willing to speak out, but I’m not going to call you an idiot. I’m just going to say ‘That’s a ridiculous question,’ and move on.”

Walker brought up Hillary Rodham Clinton without being asked, calling her the likely Democratic nominee for president. She is “a product, by and large, of Washington, not just of late, but for decades,” he said. The way to defeat her, he said, is with a Republican team that’s “completely focused on being outsiders, taking Washington on, successful reformers in states.”

Walker uses similar language to downgrade the political prospects of members of Congress. That would include such potential GOP presidential candidates as Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas, Rand Paul of Kentucky and Marco Rubio of Florida and Rep. Paul Ryan, a fellow Wisconsinite.

“I think both the presidential and the vice presidential nominee should either be a former or current governor,” Walker told ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday. “People who have done successful things in their states.”

Walker’s biggest achievement as governor was curbing the powers of government-sector unions, which triggered a ferocious backlash. Walker survived a bitterly fought recall election, making him a hero to conservatives who oppose unions.

Walker says he wasn’t intimidated by death threats against his family, thus the name of his book.

Walker takes a more conservative stand on some issues than do fellow Republican governors such as Christie and Kasich. Unlike them, Walker refused to expand Medicaid in his state with new federal funds under President Barack Obama’s new health care law. Democrats accused him of putting political ambition above the best interests of low-income Wisconsin residents.

“Accepting Medicaid expansion through Obamacare would be an anathema to Walker’s tea party base and his corporate backers,” said the liberal Daily Kos website.

Walker joined many other governors in criticizing congressional Republicans who prompted a 16-day government shutdown last month in a failed bid to block the Affordable Care Act. Chief among them was Cruz, who establishment Republicans fear will appeal to hard-line conservatives in Republican primaries but not to general election voters in November 2016.

Campaign strategists say Walker is trying to carve a middle path between Christie’s moderation and Cruz’s staunchly right positions.

Walker “is best positioned to unite the conservative and establishment wings,” said Texas-based consultant Matt Mackowiak. “Winning victories over public unions and beating back a recall attempt,” he said, can help Walker build a national image for conservative voters.

At least one liberal group is taking note of Walker. Progressives United is criticizing his record and seeking donations “to stop his political career dead in its tracks.”

Even Walker’s biggest fans note that the 2016 election is far off, and any number of unforeseen events can boost or doom potential candidacies.

Christie planted himself in the middle of Republican speculation by winning two terms in a state that hasn’t backed a Republican presidential nominee since 1988. Walker, several other governors and a few members of Congress will see if they can join him.

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Source: Newsmax.com

Gov. Scott Walker: GOP Must Win ‘Walker-Obama’ Voters.


Image: Gov. Scott Walker: GOP Must Win 'Walker-Obama' Voters

Thursday, 21 Nov 2013 11:03 PM

By Cathy Burke

To make a conservative comeback, Republicans will have to win the “Obama-Walker” voters who embrace a message of hope and reform, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said Thursday.

“There are independent, reform-minded voters in every state,” Walker wrote in an opinion piece for the Wall Street Journal.

“In times of crisis, they want leadership—from either party.”

Despite a contentious recall effort in 2012 over a law curbing collective bargaining powers for public sector workers, Walker said he won over voters at the center of the political spectrum.

“… we won the recall by a bigger margin than in the gubernatorial election in 2010,” he said. “And here is where the results get intriguing: Exit polls showed that roughly one in six voters who cast their ballots for me in the June 2012 recall also planned to vote for [President] Obama a few months later.”

Calling them “Obama-Walker voters,” Walker claimed 11 percent of Wisconsin voters support both their Republican governor and Democratic president.

“There are probably no two people in public life who are more philosophically opposite—yet more than one in 10 approve of us both,” he said. “To make a conservative comeback, Republicans need to win these Obama-Walker voters and their equivalents across the country.”

Walker said it’s foolish to think the only way the GOP can win the center is to move toward the center.

“If this were true, Barack Obama would not be president today—and I would not be governor of Wisconsin,” he said.

“The way Republicans can win those in the middle is not by abandoning their principles. … The way to win the center is to lead.”

If conservative principles were the problem, he added, “then why are so many Republican governors winning elections by campaigning on them?”

Since Obama took office in 2009, Walker wrote, “the GOP has gone from controlling both the legislature and governor’s mansion in nine states to 23 states today. Not one sitting Republican governor has lost a general election since 2007.”

“Republicans did not win those races by running from principles,” he argued. “They won by applying principles in ways that are relevant to the lives of citizens.”

“Republicans need to do more than simply say no to Mr. Obama and his party’s big-government agenda,” he wrote. “They can offer Americans positive solutions for the nation’s challenges—to reduce dependency, and create hope, opportunity, and upward mobility for all citizens. They need to make not just the economic case for conservative reforms but the moral case as well…”

“Americans reward leaders who offer positive solutions, keep their promises and get results,” he wrote. “If Republicans do that, Americans will stand with them. I know because they stood with me.”

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© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Alan Dershowitz: Constitution Doesn’t Guarantee Right to Abortion.


The Constitution doesn’t guarantee a woman’s right to an abortion, self-professed liberal Alan Dershowitz admits.

But Dershowitz, considered one of the most well-known Constitutional experts in the country, told MSNBC‘s Larry Kudlow that he still favors a woman’s right to choose.

“I can’t find anything in the Constitution that says you prefer the life of the mother or the convenience of the mother, if it’s an abortion by choice, over the potential life of the fetus,” Dershowitz. “Everything I favor I don’t think is necessarily constitutionally based.”

Story continues below video:

Dershowitz said that if women aren’t allowed to have abortions even if their lives are in danger, then he favors a woman’s right to choose.

But Calvin Freiburger, of LiveActionNews, said while he appreciates Dershowitz’ objectivity, he is “tragically wrong” in considering a fetus’ potential, not actual life.

Freiburger said that true pro-life principles do not intend that women be forced to continue life-threatening pregnancies.

According to Freiburger, Dershowitz’ opinion on the constitutionality of abortion is a point he’s made before, as far back in 2001 concerning Roe v. Wade, and Bush v. Gore, when he said the cases “represent opposite sides of the same currency of judicial activism in areas more appropriately left to the political processes. Judges have no special competence, qualifications, or mandate to decide between equally compelling moral claims (as in the abortion controversy).”

Dershowitz is not the only legal expert critical of the high court’s Roe v. Wade decision, with even Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg recently remarking that the decision was one made of judicial activism and made by “unelected old men,” Breitbart reports.

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© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

By Sandy Fitzgerald

Some Skip Conservative Conference, Cite DC Work.


Republicans’ divisions over the best tactics to use in Washington were apparent Saturday as more than a thousand conservatives gathered in the Midwest for a day-long pep rally with politicians and activists.

The regional Conservative Political Action Conference featured fiery rhetoric against taxes and the federal Affordable Care Act, signed in 2010 by President Barack Obama. It also included calls for conservatives to unite instead of fight among themselves.

The event was headlined by a pair of former presidential candidates — Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum. But many of the U.S. senators and representatives who had been scheduled to speak canceled at the last moment. Convention organizers said the lawmakers stayed in Washington, where they face a midnight Monday deadline to pass a funding plan to avert a partial government shutdown.

The lone U.S. senator to show up at the event sponsored by the American Conservative Union was Republican Sen. Mike Lee of Utah. He received a standing ovation for aiding Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in this past week’s unsuccessful filibuster against funding for the federal health care law.

“We must assert our rights to live in a land that’s free from an oppressive, distant national government,” Lee said. But he later told the conservative crowd, “We need to remember there’s more that unites us than divides us.”

Others were far less conciliatory toward those who don’t strictly adhere to conservative principals.

“Republican elected officials who vote for tax increases are rat heads in a Coke bottle,” declared Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform.

Louisiana state Sen. Elbert Guillory, who switched from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party in May, referred to Obama as “the head termite” who is “destroying the fiscal integrity of this nation.”

American Conservative Union Chairman Al Cardenas opened the event by praising Cruz’s filibuster and said conservatives are done “playing nice.”

“Conservatives are angry and rightly so,” Cardenas said. “We’re witnessing the first generation of Americans who instead of asking what they can do for America are far too eager to meekly accept liberal blandishments of what America can do for them.”

For Perry and Santorum, the conservative political conference marked their second appearance in the past month in Missouri, a traditional swing state that has increasingly leaned GOP in presidential elections. Santorum also spoke two weeks ago in Kansas City at a Republican leadership event.

Perry came to the St. Louis area last month to denounce Democratic Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of an income tax cut and recruit businesses to Texas. The governor, who isn’t running for re-election in 2014, arrived at the CPAC convention a day early to watch the St. Louis Cardinals and hold a Missouri press conference touting his creation of a nonprofit group focused on spreading his message of lower taxes and less government regulation.

Perry, noting he lived in Missouri 1969, sidestepped questions Saturday about whether he was laying the groundwork for a potential 2016 presidential bid. He steadily criticized Obama but not fellow Republicans.

“Obamacare is a failure before it even gets out of the gate. So defund it,” Perry told reporters. But he also said: “I don’t think anybody thinks that shutting down the government is a good option.”

Santorum said Republicans need to adopt new tactics — not new positions — if they are to defeat Democrats in national elections.

“We tell the American public that we are right, and we prove it to them by numbers, facts and figures,” Santorum said. “They tell the American public they understand, they relate and they care. … Like it or not, the best communicator, the best storyteller, that’s who wins.”

 

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Source: NEWSmax.com

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