Rick Perry

Senator Elizabeth Warren And Senator Rand Paul Gaining Attention In 2016 Presidential Race!

Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren and Kentucky Senator Rand Paul are gaining a lot of attention for the 2016 Presidential race with their recent speeches and campaigning.

Warren, a freshman Senator, who gained fame from her campaign for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, has stirred the imagination of left wing Democrats, who are unhappy with the comparatively centrist campaign of Hillary Clinton.

Warren has made issues of unemployment compensation, raising the minimum wage, attacking Wall Street, and calling for revising the college student loan system, which has effectively enslaved millions of students in unending college loan debt, due to high interest rates.

She comes across as folksy, not bad for a former Harvard professor, and has gained large audiences in red states such as Kentucky and West Virginia, where she has campaigned for candidates Alison Lungergan Grimes and Natalie Tennant for Senate seats. Remember, however, that she was born and lived for years in Oklahoma.

She is a new face, in the sense of national exposure, but only two years younger than Hillary Clinton.

Paul, the son of former Congressman Ron Paul of Texas, has gained attention by his attack on Texas Governor Rick Perry and former Vice President Dick Cheney, who have both called for returning troops to Iraq. Paul makes it clear that America should not return to involvement in Iraq, and he seems to have the American people on his side, based on public opinion polls. He comes across as principled, while neocons attack him as isolationist, which he denies.

It is still hard to imagine either Warren or Paul gaining the nominations of their parties for 2016, but anything is possible, and they are certainly adding a lot of interest into the race!

Republican Governors On The Run!

A number of Republican Governors, who have done a horrible job in office, are on the run, facing major challenges by Democratic opponents in November.

These include:

Rick Scott, facing a challenge from Charlie Crist in Florida.

Tom Corbett, facing a challenge from Tom Wolf in Pennsylvania.

Sam Brownback, facing a challenge from Paul Davis in Kansas.

Paul LePage, facing a challenge from Mike Michaud in Maine.

Scott Walker, facing a challenge from Mary Burke in Wisconsin.

Nathan Deal, facing a challenge from Jason Carter in Georgia.

Additionally, GOP gubernatorial nominee Greg Abbott, successor to Texas Governor Rick Perry, is facing a challenge from Wendy Davis.

Hopefully, many of these despicable GOP Governors, plus Greg Abbott in Texas, will lose in November!

Nations Breaking Up: Could It Happen Among American States?

We are living in a world where nation states have broken up, and where the potential for more such breakups is increasing.

Yugoslavia broke up into multiple nations in the 1990s, as did the old Soviet Union, and Czechoslovakia.

Sudan broke up into two nations in 2011, and Iraq seems on the road to a similar breakup, sadly through religious revolution, fanaticism and loss of life.

There has been the threat in the past of Quebec breaking away from Canada, although that seems less likely now.

Scotland will decide whether to split from the United Kingdom in a referendum this September.

There are threats of the breakup of Belgium and Spain, where strong nationality groups wish for independence.

At the same time, there has been secessionist talk by right wing groups in Texas, and even outgoing Governor Rick Perry talked up the idea a few years back, and then abandoned such talk.

But seriously, without violence, not like the Civil War in the 1860s, there are ideas floating out on the political wilderness of the possible future breakup of eight states, and the theoretical creation of an additional 16 states as a result, requiring an additional 32 US Senators, making the total possibly 132, instead of the present 100, in the upper chamber, while not changing the number of members of the House of Representatives.

These possibilities are as follows:

California–six states instead of one—Jefferson (rural Northern California); North California (centered about Sacramento, the state capital); Silicon Valley (San Francisco and San Jose); Central California (Bakersfield, Fresno and Stockton); West California (Los Angeles and Santa Barbara); and South California (San Diego and Orange Counties).

Texas–five states instead of one—New Texas (Austin, the present state capital and College Station); Trinity (Dallas, Fort Worth, Arlington and Tyler); Gulfland (Houston, Corpus Christi, Galveston); Plainland (Lubbock, Amarillo, Waco, Abilene); and El Norte (San Antonio, El Paso, Brownsville).

New York–three states instead of one—Suburban counties of Southeast New York (Westchester, Rockland, Dutchess and Orange Counties) and Long Island (Nassau and Suffolk); New York City (Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, Bronx, Staten Island); and Upstate New York (including the rest of the state, including Rochester, Buffalo, Syracuse, Binghamton).

Florida—two states instead of one—South Florida (the Keys, Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach); and Northern Florida (the rest of the state).

Illinois–two states instead of one—Chicago and near suburbs; and the rest of the state.

Pennsylvania–two states instead of one—Philadelphia and near suburbs; and the rest of the state, including Pittsburgh and Harrisburg).

Virginia–two states instead of one—Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, DC; and the rest of the state.

Maryland–two states instead of one—Baltimore, Annapolis, and Washington DC suburban counties (including Montgomery and Prince George’s County) and three rural eastern shore counties; and Western Maryland.

Is any of this likely to happen? Probably not, but great food for thought. It would require revolutionary changes in the US Senate, and would create new issues of which party would benefit, the Democrats or the Republicans, since the major metropolitan areas would be separate from the more rural counties in these eight states, and it would create a new dynamic in American politics hard to predict long term!

The Argument For A Midwestern Governor For The Republican Party In 2016 Presidential Race!

There is a growing feeling in the Republican Party, and among prognosticators, that the pool of GOP candidates for President in 2016 is lacking in so many ways.

Chris Christie is in trouble due to the scandal over the George Washington Bridge, and his handling of Hurricane Sandy money.

Scott Walker is in trouble over charges that he was involved in corruption during the 2012 recall campaign in Wisconsin.

Ted Cruz has made enemies every time he opens his mouth, and his push to close down the government in 2013 backfired, and caused division within Republican ranks.

Rand Paul is leading a fight against the “Establishment”, and is unlikely to be able to win support to be the nominee, with his libertarian and isolationist views.

Marco Rubio made enemies with his immigration reform plan, and is seen as having floundered ever since.

Paul Ryan has come across as someone who has no understanding of what middle class people go through, and with little compassion for the poor, and even fellow Catholics are often critical of him.

Bobby Jindal has come across as insincere, uncaring about his own constituents, and has lost whatever luster he once had.

Rick Perry may have gained classy glasses to wear, but he is still a horrible candidate in so many ways.

Rick Santorum is trying to reform his image as well, but he is still a former Senator who lost his seat ten years ago.

Mike Huckabee is an also ran from the 2008 Presidential campaign, and has sounded more looney than ever each month as his Fox News Channel show pushed him much further right than he had been in 2008, when he actually sounded reasonable.

Jeb Bush looks much better by comparison with other Republicans, but he is still a Bush, and has supported immigration reform and the common core education curriculum, both unpopular with his party, and besides, he certainly represents the “Establishment” more than anyone.

Mitt Romney claims not to be interested at all in running again, but yet he is seen by many as the fallback choice, despite his losing the Presidency in 2012.

Jon Huntsman, arguably the best candidate possible, seems to have absolutely no chance to convince the Republican Party that his moderate, practical conservatism is the right path.

The more one thinks about it, it makes sense that the Republican Party should seriously consider finding a candidate, preferably a Governor, from the Midwest, which is the true battleground of the Presidential Election of 2016!

None of the above mentioned candidates for the Presidency are from the Midwest, except for Ryan and Walker, both from Wisconsin, but both have fatal flaws hard to overcome.

But all of the Midwest, except Illinois, is arguably a battleground, although only Indiana and Missouri went Republican in 2012, and only Missouri in 2008!

Ohio and Iowa are true battlegrounds, and Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota are potentially up for grabs by either party.

So what seems to make sense is to give a hard look at two Midwestern Republican Governors, both of whom have served in Congress, and understand Washington, DC, but have also governed key states that are good models for preparation for the White House, at least in theory!

These two Governors are:

John Kasich of Ohio

Mike Pence of Indiana.

A lot more attention will be given to these two men as we get closer to the real beginning of the Presidential race at the end of 2014 and going into early 2015!

If Once You Do Not Succeed, Try, Try Again—Republican Mantra For Presidency

Historically, Republicans who have sought the Presidency have discovered that the first try does not work, and that the old saying–”If once you do not succeed, try, try again!”–applies.

Such is the case in the past 50 years with:

Richard Nixon, 1960 and 1968
Ronald Reagan 1968 and 1976, 1980
George H. W. Bush 1980 and 1988
Bob Dole 1980 and 1988, 1996
John McCain 2000 and 2008
Mitt Romney 2008 and 2012

So such potential candidates as Rick Santorum, Rick Perry, Mike Huckabee, Newt Gingrich, and Jon Huntsman all have history on their side, although it is unlikely to be of much help in their favor, except, possibly for Jon Huntsman, the only “mainstream” candidate of the group!

Texas Republicans Go Far Right Tea Party Extreme! But Wendy Davis And Castro Brothers Make For Democratic Future!

Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick are the most right wing candidates in the country in many respects, as the GOP nominees for Governor and Lieutenant Governor of the Lone Star State, Texas! They make outgoing Governor Rick Perry and Senator John Cornyn look moderate, which they, most certainly, are NOT! Abbott and Patrick are more in the tradition of Senator Ted Cruz, and with many loony Tea Party type Congressmen in Texas, it bodes ill for the future of Latinos, African Americans, women, labor, and environmentalists in the state of Texas!

Denial of health care to millions, and promotion of creationism and denial of global warming, and shaping their own distorted view of American history is also part of the cancer of the right wing tilt going on in Texas in the Republican Party!

But the Democrats are not giving up on the possibility of their Gubernatorial nominee, Wendy Davis, being triumphant this fall, and already, there is discussion of Congressman Joaquin Castro of San Antonio, challenging Senator Ted Cruz for his Senate seat in 2018.

At the same time, a campaign for his identical twin brother, outgoing San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, newly selected to be Housing and Urban Development Secretary for President Obama, to be a possible Vice Presidential running mate in the 2016 Presidential election is being seriously discussed.

It could be that the Castro twins could be the redemption of a state rapidly moving toward a likely “Blue” or Democratic status by 2020, with the chance it could happen with a possible Wendy Davis victory in 2014, followed by Julian Castro being on the team of any Democratic Presidential nominee, not just Hillary Clinton or Joe Biden, in 2016!

War On The Liberal Arts In Florida, Texas, North Carolina: The Promotion Of Dumbness!

The right wing Republican Governors of Florida, Texas, and North Carolina have declared war on public funding of the liberal arts at the state university level in their states!

Considering that poverty is very high in these states, and educational attainment is lower than in the Northeast, Midwest, and Western states, it is clear that the Republican Party in these Southern states wants to keep people dumb, and prevent the promotion of skills that are essential for a good productive life–like reading, writing, analyzing, and simply THINKING!

A person who gains a college education with little or no exposure to the liberal arts is a person denied basic knowledge and appreciation of the great contributions of mankind over the millenniums!

To say that no one needs to major in anthropology, or literature, or history, or classics, etc is to declare war on intellectual pursuits, and it is clear that we have many people coming out of college ready for the technical and business worlds who have no basic communicative skills, but are simply robots who cannot read, write, analyze or think clearly!

And to say that different fields of knowledge are unworthy is to declare war on the whole point of education, to make people better human beings, not just train them for a field of work that might, very likely, disappear over the course of a work life!

To gain intellectual skills is to gain vision, gain a sense of humanity and compassion, and to have a quality life, not one only judged and based on materialism and greed!

These governors—Rick Scott, Rick Perry (and his likely successor, Greg Abbott), and Pat McCrory–prefer stupidity and ignorance, as that makes it easier for them to pursue their right wing goals to undermine the future of their states, among the lowest in achievement, and bound to get worse with this kind of damaging attack on the liberal arts! They are only out to promote the top one to two percent, and want a work force that is unable to compete in a way to advance and, actually, challenge the establishment elite!

Those who do not know the past are doomed to repeat it! We still need anthropologists, historians, poets, playwrights, artists, musicians, and others in the liberal arts, as part of a humane society, and no student should be denied the opportunity to major in any of these or other liberal arts fields, and they are often better educated than those who come out of colleges with no exposure to the liberal arts!

There is a need for a strong reaction to this detrimental attack on basic human knowledge by the scholarly community!

Texas And Florida: Two States With Two Competing Presidential Candidates For The GOP!

Texas is the second largest state in population, and Florida is soon to be the third largest state.

Texas is “red”, but seen as turning “purple” and eventually “blue” by 2020 or after.

Florida is “purple”, strongly Republican, but won by Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012.

Both are extremely important battlegrounds for the future of the Presidency, with a total population of about 45 million combined, and becoming more Hispanic and Latino annually.

And both have two competing Presidential candidates for the Republican nomination for President in 2016.

Texas has outgoing Governor Rick Perry and freshman Senator Ted Cruz, while Florida has former Governor Jeb Bush (whose brother and father were elected to public office from Texas), and freshman Senator Marco Rubio.

Cruz and Rubio are the new generation, while Perry is the longest serving Governor of Texas, and one of the longest serving Governors in American history, and Jeb Bush was last in public office eight years ago, and last competed in an election 12 years ago.

Bush and Perry both have ties to George W. Bush, one his brother, and the other his Lieutenant Governor, who succeeded him when he was elected President.

One would have to say that Bush and Rubio seem far more likely contenders than Perry and Cruz, with both ranked higher on lists by political prognosticators.

It seems clear that Rubio is unlikely to run if Bush does, while Perry and Cruz will both compete, neither one wishing to give in to the other.

As far as becoming President, it will be very difficult for any Republican, but the best betting money is on Jeb Bush if he announces, as his overall image, despite his last name, puts him near the top of the potential list of nominees for the White House!

What If Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, And Jeb Bush Do Not Run For President?

So much attention has been paid to the concept that Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, and Jeb Bush will run for President, but what if none of these three career politicians choose to run?

There are some hints that Hillary will not run, and there has been concern about her health, her age, and whether she wants to go through the “hell” of running for President, knowing that she is soon to be a grandmother, and will be in her 70s nine months into her Presidency. There seems to be the belief that she wants to be President, but does not relish running for the job. The vicious attacks have begun anew, as when she was First Lady, and she could have more leisure time, and make more money by writing more books, doing more lectures, and being a “statesman”, instead of being a politician.

The problems to be faced by the next President in domestic and foreign affairs are overwhelming, and cannot make her feel that there will be any sense of peace or tranquility, with the total chasm between the Democratic and Republican Parties. And despite lack of criticism openly by the Left in the Democratic Party, many would rather see Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, or Governor Martin O’Malley of Maryland, running as fresh faces. Some even imagine Socialist Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont as an alternative, although both he and Warren are not good on the age factor, with Sanders in his 70s, and Warren entering it late in the next term of the Presidency.

Vice President Joe Biden faces the same situation–age and health issues, and the desire to spend more time with his family, with him reaching the age of 74 shortly after the next Presidential election. Biden loves his job, but is he, maybe, having second thoughts as well about the challenges ahead, and after 44 years of public service, it would not be surprising if he decided not to run.

Jeb Bush is being promoted by his brother, George W. Bush, and his dad, George H. W. Bush, while his mother, Barbara Bush, advises against his running for President. Jeb has a quandary, as the “establishment” in the party wants him, as Chris Christie flounders with his scandal in New Jersey, but it is clear that he has strong doubts, as to the wisdom of running, and facing vehement opposition from the Tea Party Movement and others in the right wing dominated GOP, that it would be a tough battle to win the nomination, and he is behind, even in Florida, to Hillary Clinton. Also, remember that Jeb has not been public office for ten years by 2016, and will not have faced a campaign since 2002, by 2016, and his experience does not come anywhere near that of Hillary and Joe.

But the question arises, what happens if these three “leaders” do not run for President? Who would benefit, come out of the shadows, and become the new John F. Kennedy, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, or Barack Obama for the Democrats (all not considered front runners in the second year of the Presidential term before they were elected)? And who would become the man able to demonstrate the experience and ability of Richard Nixon, George H. W. Bush, Bob Dole, and John McCain, which led the GOP to pick people with foreign policy expertise as their candidates (even if Dole and McCain did not win the White House)?

Would another woman be likely to run if Hillary did not run, and to have a real chance to win–such as Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, or Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota? Or would a Northeastern Governor, such as Martin O’Malley of Maryland or Andrew Cuomo of New York be the best bet? Or would another African American Senator, Cory Booker, be the way to go? Or would the Democratic Party go to the moderate center, and pick Senator Mark Warner of Virginia, or go out to the Mountain West and pick former Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer? Or could Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont really have a chance to be the nominee?

For the Republicans, would former Utah Governor and Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman, easily the most qualified in foreign policy and effective in domestic matters while governing Utah, be able to gain “establishment” support, and overcome the Right Wing extremism of the Tea Party Movement? Or would the party go to a Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin, or John Kasich of Ohio, or Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, or Rick Perry of Texas? Or would they go for the newcomers in the Senate–Ted Cruz of Texas, Rand Paul of Kentucky, Marco Rubio of Florida, or go for 2012 Vice Presidential nominee, Congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin?

The reality is that IF Hillary, Joe, and Jeb were to choose not to run, the 2016 Presidential campaign would be wide open, and probably chaotic, path breaking, and historic, and no one could possibly predict the ultimate outcome!

A Great Moment For Progressives: Sean Hannity, Rand Paul And Other Right Wingers On The Defensive Over Racist Comments Of Cliven Bundy!

This is a glorious time for progressives, as the Cliven Bundy story becomes one not only anarchism, law breaking, and tax evasion, but also one of pure and simple racism!

Any sane person would see that Cliven Bundy is a piece of crap, and that the government MUST enforce the law against this anarchistic lawbreaker, and use whatever federal intervention is necessary, so that he does not get way with breaking federal law with impunity, as that will only stir up others to think they can defy their government, when there is no just cause to do so!

It has been fun watching Sean Hannity, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee, Dean Heller, Rick Perry, Greg Abbott and others squirm and try to escape their endorsement and support of this garbage!

The answer is that Fox News Channel is to be blamed for backing Cliven Bundy, and the answer should be to fire Sean Hannity as losing all credibility, and promoting disrespect for our laws, and being an advocate of anarchism and violence!

And those Republicans who have backed Bundy have lost all credibility to be our Commander in Chief, and any Republican who backed Bundy should be promptly defeated for any more terms in Congress or state government!