Archive for the ‘Republicans’ Category

Bob McDonnell: Cad or Rotter?

August 25, 2014

Bob McDonnell: Cad or Rotter?

Former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell testified on his own behalf last week in his corruption and bribery trial. The devoted husband and father of five of the 2009 gubernatorial campaign explained that all the unfortunate events in question could be blamed on his screaming lunatic harridan of a wife, Maureen McDonnell.

There’s no real political downside for Mr. McDonnell, who already lost any chance of getting women’s votes when he backed a vaginal probe clause in a proposed Virginia bill. On the other hand, what Real American Guy wouldn’t want to drive a Ferrari and own a Rolex and doesn’t blame stuff on his wife?

Right before the trial, Mr. McDonnell moved out of the house he shared with his wife of 38 years. He’s been living with his priest at the rectory of St. Patrick’s Church in Richmond. He’s probably thinking that, if the couple are convicted, he can claim sanctuary and Maureen can plead insanity.

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Saint Ronald

August 13, 2014

Saint Ronald

Rick Perlstein wrote a book about Barry Goldwater in 2001; William Buckley praised it. George Will praised Perlstein’s 2008 best-seller Nixonland. Today’s conservatives are not fond of Perlstein’s new publication, The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan.  They’re attacking it, and its author.

“What changed?” asks David Weigel. “This time Perlstein is writing about Ronald Reagan. Goldwater, Nixon, Reagan—Perlstein has moved from covering a minor saint, to a martyr, to God.”

Besides this charge of blasphemy,  conservatives chastise Pearlstein for paying attention to the facts and not making up his own, like they do. How unoriginal. He must be a plagiarist.

More:

“It’s Not Rick Perlstein’s Scholarship that Seems to Be in Question. It’s His Politics,” Peter Charles Hoffer, History News Network

“A Question of Character: Craig Shirley’s Scurrilous Attack on Liberal Historian Rick Perlstein,” Adele M. Stan, The American Prospect

“Rick Perlstein: ‘Ronald Reagan absolved America almost in a priestly role not to have to contend with sin. The consequences are all around us today,’” David Dayen, Salon

 

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McDonnell Trial: All In The Family

August 11, 2014

McDonnell Trial: All In The Family

Before he was Virginia’s Governor or Attorney General, Robert Francis McDonnell wrote a Masters Thesis at CBN (Christian Broadcasting Network) University, now called Regent University. The thesis: “The Republican Party’s Vision for the Family: The Compelling Issue of The Decade” (1989). It’s in the Regent U Library, but the Washington Post posted it online during the 2009 Virginia gubernatorial campaign.

On page 65 of the thesis (page 71 of the PDF) Mr. McConnell lists the “real enemies of the traditional family” as “materialism, irresponsibility, feminism, lust, and ultimately selfishness….” Well, the McDonnell corruption trial hasn’t involved feminism so far, anyway. On the other hand, the author of that thesis did acknowledge that his wife Maureen provided “expert clerical support” for the 94-page document ….

More:

“Focus on the Family,” Daliah Lithwick, Slate

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Image (“McDonnell Defense, In One Bumper Sticker”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Virginia Snake Oil: Love Potion?

August 7, 2014

Virginia Snake Oil: Love Potion Number 9?

In the soap opera that is the public corruption trial of former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and his former NFL Cheerleader wife Maureen, the defense claims the couple’s relationship was bad, so the Gov didn’t know the Mrs. had a crush on “diet supplement” peddler Jonnie Williams and tried to trade government favors in return for his high-priced gifts. Today, however, the focus shifted to the patent nostrum sold by said Mr. Williams, a snake oil named Anatabloc.

The active ingredient in Anatabloc is Anatabine, an alkaloid derived from tobacco. Star Scientific, Mr. William’s company at the time, sold discount cigarettes and smokeless tobacco through a subsidiary, but sales weren’t too good, so … right. Anatabloc was said to “reduce inflammation and support a healthy metabolism” but was marketed as a “dietary supplement” to avoid those pesky clinical trials required of drugs. That didn’t keep the firm from claiming that the crap could mitigate Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, thyroiditis and traumatic brain injuries. You know, like a drug. Finally, the FDA caught them at it and issued a stern letter. Heavens to Betsy.

So that’s what Virginia First Lady Maureen McDonnell was shilling in the Executive Mansion in 2011 on behalf of love interest Jonnie Williams.  Mr. Williams claims he viewed the gifts of luxury items and loans of his vacation resort home and Ferrari sports car to the Governor and his wife as part of a business relationship, but Mrs. McDonnell’s lawyer claims she was smitten with Mr. Williams.

Wait a minute. Is romantic attraction a result of taking Anatabloc? That’s worth billions.

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McDonnell Trial: The Soap Opera Defense

August 1, 2014

McDonnell Trial: The Soap Opera Defense

The former NFL cheerleader had feelings for the shady millionaire snake-oil salesman, who gave her gifts, favors, and cash in order to influence her husband, the state’s Governor. That’s the Exculpatory Soap Opera Theory introduced by the defense in the corruption trial of former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and his wife Maureen, and they’re sticking to it.

Political tragedy? Please. More like campy, middle-age melodrama.

More:

“Ex-First Couple’s Defense in Virginia: The State of Their Union,” Trip Gabriel, New York Times

“McDonnells pin acquittal hopes on bad marriage in Virginia trial,” Michael Muskal, Los Angeles Times

“Testimony seems to back up ‘bimbo defense’ in McDonnell corruption trial,” Mark Holmberg, WTVR-TV News

“Trial of Virginia Ex-Governor and His Wife Is an Amazing Soap Opera,” Erin Gloria Ryan, Jezebel

“Star witness in Bob McDonnell corruption trial refutes ‘crush’ defense,” David Sherfinski, Washington Times

Related:

“10 gifts U.S. wants ex-Va. governor, wife to forfeit,” USA Today

“Virginia’s First Lady-elect Maureen McDonnell was a Former Redskins Cheerleader,” UltimateCheerleaders.com

“Of Course! Disgraced Gov. McDonnell Is Now Teaching At Liberty U,” karoli, Crooks & Liars

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Image (Midday Melancholy, after Constance Charpentier) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Sarah Palin Launches TV Network

July 28, 2014

Sarah Palin Launches TV Network

Sarah Palin, former Miss Wasilla, once part-time Temp-Governor of Alaska, losing GOP Vice Presidential candidate and failed Fox News commentator, is launching her own on-line TV network, the Sarah Palin Channel. Run on free-market principles, it’ll cost you $9.95 a month or $99.95 a year. A comment on Gawker suggests you go monthly, since Palin will probably quit after 6 months, like she did as Governor of Alaska.

More:

“Sarah Palin Launches Her Own Channel Online,” Todd Spangler, Variety

“Sarah Palin begins her own online channel,” Catalina Camia, USA Today

“Sarah Palin Launches Subscription-Based Online Video Channel,” Andrew Kirell, Mediaite

“Millions Pay for Rare Opportunity to Hear Sarah Palin Speak,” Andy Borowitz, The New Yorker

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Bachmann Eyes 2016 Presidential Run

July 25, 2014

Bachmann Eyes 2016 Presidential Run

Congress-creature Michele Bachmann, the “Crazy Eyes” Republican currently representing the 6th District of Minnesota, the Planet Mars, the Tea Party Caucus, and the voice of the Lord, is considering another run for the presidency of the United States. God Bless America.

 More:

 “Michele Bachmann: ‘There’s a chance I could run’ for President in 2016,” Terence Cullen, New York Daily News

“Michele Bachmann on running for president: ‘There’s a chance,'” Scott Conroy, RCP via CBS News

“What’s behind Michele Bachmann’s 2016 tease,” Abby Ohlheiser, Washington Post

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Top image (“The Eyes Have It”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Ted Cruz: Canadian, Eh? No More.

June 17, 2014

Ted Cruz: Canadian, Eh? No More.

The father of Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), rabid evangelical preacher Elmer Gantry Rafael Cruz, has been questioning the U.S. birth status of Barack Obama. Then the Dallas Morning News discovered that Senator Cruz was born in Alberta, Canada and officially had Canadian as well as U.S. citizenship.

Awkward.

Senator Cruz finally renounced his Canadian citizenship so he’s 110%-by-God-American but it sure took a long time for the Harvard-Law-educated Cruz to get those legal papers inked.

So can Ted Cruz legally be U.S. President? His Mom is a Yank, so yeah. But that won’t stop the questions. Or the jokes.

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Red-Meat Republicans

June 13, 2014

Red-Meat Republicans

In the 2014 Republican primary, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s campaign and PAC spent nearly $170,000 at DC power steakhouses, chiefly Bobby Van’s and BLT Steak. His victorious opponent Dave Brat’s entire campaign cost $122,000.

“”It’s rare that you would see a fundraiser at a Ruby Tuesday or a Chipotle,’ said Lisa Spies, a veteran GOP fundraiser …. ‘You’ve got to spend money to raise money.’

In the 2014 cycle, all federal candidates have spent just over $9,000 on Chipotle, and $1,229 at Ruby Tuesday, according to numbers compiled by CQ Moneyline. In the same span, they have spent more than $400,000 at Bobby Van’s.”

–  “Why Eric Cantor chose Bobby Van’s,” Eric Tau, Politico

It works. Cantor’s campaign raked in $5.5 million and his PAC took in $3.5 million more while Brat raised $206,663.

But the median annual household income in Virginia’s 7th District is $64,751, the value of the average family home is $188,400, and it’s a pretty long drive to Bobby Van’s.

Related:

“Elites Beware: Eric Cantor’s Defeat May Signal a Populist Revolution,” Ron Fournier, National Journal

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Eric Cantor Ousted

June 11, 2014

Eric Cantor Ousted

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R, VA-7), a 13-year congressional veteran, was defeated by Tea Party loon David Brat in the June 10th Republican Primary. Mr. Cantor is the first sitting House majority leader to lose a primary election since the position was created in 1899.

David Brat is a professor at Randolph-Macon College with degrees in economics and divinity, Director of the BB&T Moral Foundations of Capitalism Program and, as a complete political unknown, was the perfect vehicle for the anti-incumbent vote. He also benefited from the strong xenophobic sentiment of Virginia’s Republican party. Henry Blodget summarizes Mr. Brat’s platform: “No government, no immigration, no tax, no schools, fusion of church/state….”

Dave Brat will face fellow Randolph-Macon professor Jack Trammell in November’s general election.

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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