Good morning everyone! I know there are several Huckabee bloggers out there. THIS MESSAGE IS FOR YOU!!! That's right. Listen up! It's time to get active again. The Summer is almost over and soon enough the general election will be weeks away. Okay so we didn't get our man the nomination. It's okay. There are many candidates and causes worth supporting out there. In the coming days action will be required on the Pro-Life and Defense of Marriage initiatives that Mike and HuckPAC will probably be kicking off soon.
We worked very hard blogging for Mike for many months. I needed a break and I think we all did. I have not been as active lately myself so I completely understand.. However the time has come to come out of hibernation because it's time to answer his call again. There is too much at stake. I urge all the Huckabee bloggers out there to get active again. We've got a lot of work to do!
SO LET'S GET TO IT!!
Monday, July 28, 2008
Good morning everyone! I know there are several Huckabee bloggers out there. THIS MESSAGE IS FOR YOU!!! That's right. Listen up! It's time to get active again. The Summer is almost over and soon enough the general election will be weeks away. Okay so we didn't get our man the nomination. It's okay. There are many candidates and causes worth supporting out there. In the coming days action will be required on the Pro-Life and Defense of Marriage initiatives that Mike and HuckPAC will probably be kicking off soon.
Saturday, July 26, 2008
This one goes out to the Okies in and around Muskogee, Oklahoma! I am very proud to announce my endorsement of George Faught. Faught is the current Oklahoma State Rep for District 14. This fine Republican was first elected in 2006. After doing research I can clearly see that he has served his constituents well and deserves to be re-elected for another term! George is a top notch husband, a loving father, and a man of honor and integrity. He was not afraid to step out of ranks with his fellow Republicans in the State House when he felt they were on the wrong side of the issues. He sponsored a bill to make English the official language of Oklahoma. Even though the bill fell just short of approval, George Faught is committed to stand up for the bill again and to solve the illegal immigration problem. George is pro life without apology and stands firm on that issue. He has also fought against corruption and graft every step of the way.
I could go on and on and on but why don't you take a look for yourself. Please visit George Faught's website. He could use all the help he can get. Since Distirct 14 us a traditionally Democratic district, the Democrats have targeted Faught and will fight him with all the money they can muster up. the good folks in Muskogee, Oklahoma and Cherokee County deserve George Faught's integrity and leadership for another term! He is a shining example of the kind of REpublicans we need winning and keeping office around the country!
Friday, July 25, 2008
The world has just lost a fantastic inspiration today. Randy Pausch, who is famous for his "Last Lecture" has finally succombed to the terminal pancreatic cancer which inspired his lecture (and the insuing best-selling book) this morning at his home in Virginia. Randy has and will always be an inspiration to millions with his indomitable spirit and fantastic attitude despite facing uncureable cancer. His famous lecture is embedded below. If you have an hour this weekend I hope you will watch and listen. Another reason this lecture is close to my heart is because it has a Disney connection.
While we are at it I'd like to share a shorter, but similiarly inspiring speech. Former NC State basketball coach Jim Valvano was battling cancer in 1993 and was presented with an award for his courage. As he accepted the award he gave a fantastic and inspiring speech. Jimmy V, who "Never Gave Up" would pass away a month later.
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Frequent readers to this blog will definitely know I reside near Atlanta, Georgia. However I have many friends in California. In fact I have a few near the city of Fresno. This year the citizens there are selecting a new mayor and I am very pleased to make an endorsement in that race. I am very proud to endorse Ashley Swearengin! I think she will make a fantastic mayor and I hope the people of Fresno will agre with my sentiments. By visiting her website you will see where she stands on the issue and she has a plan to help the city regain its footing as the capitol of the San Joaquin Valley. Ashley's plan includes strengthening the economy of the city, making City Hall more accessable to the people and mroe effecient for the taxpayer. A big part of her plan is to be fiscally responsible. You can't go wrong with that and I don't think the people of Fresno California can;t go wrong by electing Ashley Swearengin as their new mayor this November!
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
I have made an executive decision. For the last three and a half hours of Vertical Day I am going to Live Blog it. I have not blogged this much since Super Tuesday and my eyes are starting to hit the wall. I will give links to the posts but not the posts themselves. Sorry for that but it is either this or I will not be able to finish my pledged obligation to Governor Huckabee.
I am behind so the time stamps will start before I am actually typing this. HERE WE GO!!!
8:01 PM - Missouri Congressman Sam Graves is back with another post. This time he writes about protecting Marriage.
8:23 PM - Next up is another published idea from a fellow supporter. We go out to California to hear energy ideas from Joshua Love from Berkley.
8:39 PM - Phew! If you think I am exhausted I don't even want to know how tired Chris, the webmaster is after this is all over! Kudos dude. You are working overtime!
9:00 PM - GOP Candidate in the 2nd' Congressional District of Indiana, Luke Puckett checks in again with a post on why he is Pro-life.
9:15 PM - Texas Senator "Big John" Cornyn is back with another post. John's latest post is on the current Energy crisis and the bottleneck in Congress.
9:20 PM - Need to take a time out for a few minutes to rest my fingers and eyes. I am also getting a nice cold drink of water. I'll post what I miss with the proper time stamp even though I will likely not post them at the same time.
9:35 PM - Tennessee Senator, Lamar Alexander returns with another fantastic post. this time he opines about the 2nd Amendment. Great post Senator!
9:50 PM - Sam Graves is back again. This time he discusses the need for the United States to be the strongest force for freedom in the world.
10:08 PM - Thanks to Governor Huckabee's Twitter Account for the plug. Are you on Twitter? Mike is! Why don't you follow him? You can also follow me as well! :)
10:17 PM - From Mike's homes state of Arkansas, State Senator Gilbert Baker (District 30) is our next blogger! check out his post, "God's Gift of Life"
10:41 PM - Oklahoma's Senior Senator, Jim Inhofe has returned. this go around he blogs the old fashioned way. Jim writes and tells us that the 2nd Amendment is "The Very Essance of Freedom!" I could not agree more!
10:51 PM -Roy Brown is running as the Republican candidate for Governor in Montana. As we head towards the final hour of Vertical Day, Roy is our latest guest blogger. Go check out his post, "The fight For Values Continues" Very well said! Montana could use a fantastic governor like you.
11:05 PM - We are now in the final hour of Vertical Day. Wow this has been fun! I hope that after a whole new batch of candidates are endorsed by HuckPAC, that we can do this again very soon. Yes it is tiring to blog all day long but the cause is great and I'm all for it. Let's do it again Huck!
11:20 PM: Bob Clegg, from New Hampshire (he was Huckabee's campaign chair in the Granite State), checks in one more time. His latest post is about health care reform.
11:32 PM - We haven't heard an idea from a supporter in awhile. UNTIL NOW! The latest supporter ideas is sent in by Eddie Harper. Mr. Harper writes about his ideas on the current energy situation.
11:44 PM - Here's another Supporter idea. This time we hear an idea on how we can controll spedning. The contributer is Michael Kandoll from Pikeville, NC. Great post Mike! Way to go!
11:54 PM - The procedings were kicked off by Senator Lamar Alexander and I think he has the final word as far as candidates go (I could be wrong). In his final Vertical Day post, Alexander calls for a "New Manhattan Project" om prder for the United States to become completely energy Independent. I'm all for that!
MIDNIGHT - HuckPAC's Vertical Day is now over but before I finish I want to share with you the final blog post by Governor Mike Huckabee.
I had decided earlier this week to conclude Vertical Day with a blog post rallying conservatives to come off the sidelines and join the fight for our ideas.Thank you very much Governor. It has and continues to be an honor to fight for you, and our cause! this was a absolute blast. I hope that we can do this again many times over.
That was until I received this email today. It's a story that I want to share with you, so you may hear from a voice more powerful than my own this evening:
Thank you for caring about us...the people. Thank you for all that you are doing for the people...
...We were already just barely making it, and now that the cost of living and gas prices are so high, we are not making it to the next paycheck, and if we do, we are spread very thin. In fact, this month, some unexpected costs came up causing us to be short. My husband is a minister and gets paid once a month. The church does reimburse him for 50 dollars in gas expenses, but it's not anywhere near enough for what he is spending considering he makes several trips to Abilene a week for hospital visits, bringing people to the doctor, giving people rides to work, taking people to AA meetings, toting kids around, etc. You know what it's about because you have been there. We live twenty minutes from Abilene, so the cost of gas is killing our pocket book.
...The point of this email is that we are hurting, and if Congress doesn't do something soon, we lower middle class people are going to end up as charity cases. We are doing everything in our power not to have to go that route, and besides that, our income probably falls right above the foodstamps income line, so we wouldn't qualify anyway. I'm not saying I want to be on welfare. Not at all. But I feel we are being forced in that direction if something isn't done soon.
Again, thank you so much for what you are doing. I'm glad that people like Senator John Cornyn are helping you. I'm glad that we, the people, can count on you and some others to fight for our values and the economic issues facing our country...
I know from my many long months on the campaign trail meeting with voters nationwide that the writer of this email is not alone. To her and everyone else in a similar situation, please know, I hear you and I will make sure the candidates Huck PAC supports hear you.
There are real problems facing this country. We need to solve our energy crisis. We need to reform our tax code. We need to get a handle on our sky-rocketing health care costs. We need to revitalize our schools.
Washington likes to play a who's up, who's down game with politics. Well when there are hard working Americans writing emails like the one I shared above, let me tell you everyone is down.
Today was about identifying and hearing from the candidates we have endorsed. If you haven't had a chance to read all of the posts I suggest you do. Read the comments as well. We have a community here at www.huckpac.com committed to the issues. We will continue to grow and I hope you will continue to participate.You can count on Huck PAC to fight for these candidates. And you can count on me to continue fighting for you.
thanks to everyone for participating today. As for me I'm heading to bed. I'm exhausted from blogging all day.
AND WITH THAT - VERTICAL DAY IS NOW COMPLETE! - GOOD NIGHT AND GOD BLESS Y'ALL!
the man famous for campaigning in plaid shirts, Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander is back to blog again as the sun sets on Vertical Day. This time Senator Alexander talks about his pro-life stance:
I'm pro-life, and I know that many of you share my deep and abiding respect for life in all of its forms.
I continue to believe what women in crisis need most is our care and support. I support adoption as an alternative to abortion and encourage efforts to make adopting a child easier. And I've fought in the Senate for numerous pro-life measures.
I cosponsored the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003 to end that dreadful and unnecessary procedure. And, through that law was challenged in federal courts, I was heartened that the U.S. Supreme Court did the right thing last year by upholding the ban.
I supported the Unborn Victims of Violence Act – also known as Laci and Conner’s Law – which made it a criminal offense to injure or kill a fetus during the commission of a violent crime against a pregnant woman.
And I was proud to cosponsor and vote for the Child Custody Protection Act, a measure which would make it a federal offense to transport a minor across state lines to obtain an abortion if the intent is to circumvent a parental notification or consent law in the state where the minor lives. In many cases, we’re talking about girls who couldn’t even go on a school field trip without a parent’s permission. And I firmly believe that a young lady should have her parent’s involvement in such a life-changing decision.
Despite strong bipartisan support in both chambers and Senate approval by a vote of 65-34, this bill never became law because the Democratic leadership in the Senate refused to allow the two Houses to meet and agree to a final version to send to the President for his signature.
The inexcusable lack of progress on the Child Custody Protection Act demonstrates how badly our nation needs leaders who share our commitment to the culture of life. If you'd like to learn more, I'd encourage you to visit LamarAlexander.com and sign up to join my team.
Even though the sun is now setting into the West, there are still 3-4 hours left in Vertical Day and more posts coming up. Please stay tuned and do go click the links and comment to these wonderful supporters and candidates! They deserve our support!
When requesting our ideas about the important issues of the day, Governor Huckabee asked about several issues. Well the next guest supporter, a retired teacher from California, tries to answer them all:
Control Spending? Stop spending money that does not exist. Every one must live withing their means including our government. Congress spends tax-payers money and goes into unbelievable future debt that we will have to pay generations down the line. Irresponsible? YES!!!!'
Energy Independent? Use our own countries resources that are within our Nation's borders. We have plenty, and we cannot afford to be held hostage by our enemies around the world.
Improve our Educational System? Stop allowing social agendas to be forced on our kids when we parents disagree full-heartily. Educational basics are still Reading and Writing, and Arithmetic with English, Science, and True US and World History, not re-written to lead our youth into wrong thinking. The Golden Rule has always been easy to understand and to live with. It is scarcely known by our students now. The foundations of a strong work-ethic is essential to make it in this world today financially, and teenagers need to be exposed to skills that they can enter the workforce with and be successful. Families are the basic unit of society, and as they fall apart at the seams, so does this country. We all are losing hope for a better future with the support of family and school working together to prepare our young to become successful and productive adults. A state of hopelessness and depression is taking its toll. So many people are wasting their lives due to their failure to achieve when their opportunities were not taken seriously. Bad Attitude is very difficult to turn around, so we should prevent it at all costs.
Improve our Health Care?
Most of us like to select our own health care and we are willing to pay whatever we can afford. Unfortunately too many others like to think they are "entitled" to have tax- payer supported health care. Many employers now offer health care benefits, but for the unemployed...they miss out on that. So their attitude is the government must provide it for them. They take no personal responsibility for themselves which is another part of Bad Attitude. More and more people are willing to do nothing for themselves but to rely on the tax-paying citizens to take care of them. We have become a nation of people who are depending on their Entitlements. They are not free, in fact people who do not pay have little respect for the value of anything. They are the wasteful ones who throw away good food etc. and litter the common areas with their wastefulness. Families used to take care of their own, but now they let the state governments take care of their problems and provide care for individuals who have serious needs. Family and Education need to work together to reduce the numbers of welfare rolls.
Every family needs to have members who work for a living to support the family. And every family should pay taxes accordingly. Right now less than half of our population pays taxes, and this is sure doom and our society is going broke. I am for tax-reform that is fair to all.
Promotion of concervation and good sterwardship of our environment.?
Education and common sense tells us that wastefulnes will cost us dearly, and when we conserve we also save much money for a better economy at home and in the community. But when people get things for free, they place no personal cost or value, and they are so wasteful it is pitiful. It is an attitude of total ungratittude. They tend to have no personal responsibility nor pride in themselves because they are takers and not givers anyway. The are the product of failing families and failing schools, and they are growning in numbers that are so costly.
Don't we care to fix what is broken? Apparently our Congress is broken too. They are not concerned about what is true and right in the over-all sight of God.
Mrs. Jean Palmer, San Marcos, California, retired high school teacher for over 40 years.
In his 2nd post today, New Hampshire Congressional Candidate (2nd District), Bob Clegg joins John Linder in writing about his support for the FairTax:
Over the past few months, many of you saw checks in the mail from the federal government. As part of the so-called "stimulus package", the government returned $600 that it originally took from your paycheck. Apparently, Washington politicians came to the realization that more money in your pocket will stimulate the economy and thereby create jobs. The cost of notifying you of the $600 "rebate" was somewhere in the neighborhood of $42 million…and that didn't even cover the cost of printing new checks and mailing them back to you! Imagine if the government had left that money in your paycheck in the beginning. Imagine if the government didn't spend $42 million to let you know it was sending you back some of your hard earned dollars. Imagine if the government didn't spend millions more of your money sending you back your money. That is one of the reasons why I am a proponent of the Fair Tax. Let's leave the paycheck with the family. Let's not tax the worker who takes on a second job to send his daughter to college, and reward those who would rather sit back relying on the government to increase taxes to do it for him. Let's change the system to one where your purchasing decisions determine what taxes you pay and your productivity is rewarded not punished. It's time for America to allow a family to work hard to better itself, to feed itself, to nurture the belief that a self-sufficient, self-reliant population is a better place than one that waits for government to do it all. We need to reward hard work. We need to leave the paycheck in the pocket of those who have earned it. The time has come for a Fair Tax.
To learn more about Bob Clegg's campaign for Congress click here.
Please excuse the lull in posting...I had to break for dinner. Hopefully it won't take me too long to catch up.
The next candidate to participate in Vertical Day is Senator Elizabeth Dole (of North Carolina). Her post, like others, is about Energy Independence:
I am continuing my fight to bring immediate and long term relief to the rising price of gas. I have heard from North Carolinians and people from across the country that are being hurt every day by the increased burden this puts on your lives. I have put forward a real plan that provides immediate and long term relief and I will be fighting for its passage in the United States Senate.
Everyone agrees we need to fix this growing problem, but there is widespread disagreement on just how to accomplish it. I often hear, "Drill for more oil here at home," "Become less dependent on foreign sources for oil" or "Find alternative sources for energy so we don't have to rely on oil.
All of those suggestions are accurate.
In the future, we may have sources of alternative energy that will power all our needs, burn cleanly and render gasoline obsolete. However, we are years, if not decades, away from a solution of this magnitude. The reality of today's world is that we rely on oil in this country to drive to work, harvest crops, transport goods, fly planes, build roads and heat our homes. We must take serious and responsible actions that provide families and businesses with some near-term relief. That is why I have called on the president to immediately release one third of the supply from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, which will immediately provide relief at the pump because of an increased supply of oil available for refinement and will punish the oil speculators who are betting against America. This will not jeopardize national security because the reserve would still contain a 60 day supply.
In addition, I have called on the president to create an Oil and Gas Market Fraud Task Force, which will ensure that energy markets are free from illegal manipulation and corporate corruption. This new Task Force can help restore the confidence of Americans in our oil and gas markets and prevent further harm to our economy.
While we focus on the short-term relief, we must also work towards long-term solutions. Given that the reasons for oil price fluctuation are more complicated than simply supply and demand, I believe our government must have an oil strategy. We need to increase supply by investing at home and increasing or starting environmentally-sound production in areas such as the Gulf of Mexico and ANWR. I also helped introduce the Gas Price Reduction Act, which would allow states, including North Carolina, the option to open areas, at least 50 miles offshore, to energy exploration as long as it is safe, clean and not visible from the land. States would be able to receive 37.5 percent of the revenues from oil and gas found off their coasts. This bill also would lift a moratorium on oil shale in the Rocky Mountain West, where experts estimate there is three times the oil that is in Saudi Arabia.
The liberals in Congress like to argue that if we begin drilling in ANWR it will take ten years to realize the increase in supply. If President Clinton hadn't vetoed legislation in 1996 to open 2,000 of the 19.6 million acres in a remote area of Alaska for exploration, our current energy deficit would already be reduced by roughly one million barrels of oil per day. How long must we wait? The time for action is now.
In fact, since Democrats have taken back control of Congress, gas prices have risen by about $2 per gallon. Now, my opponent wants to point fingers, but she should look no further than her friends in Washington who have blocked responsible oil exploration since I was elected and long before.
However, simply having more oil is not only the long-term solution we need for this country's economic stability. It is vital to also lessen demand through technology and conservation. I support further increasing fuel economy standards for all vehicles and providing point-of-sale rebates for hybrid and clean diesel vehicle purchases, which will save millions of barrels of oil per day. I have co-sponsored numerous bills to pursue those goals, including the Clean Energy Investment Act and Clean Energy Tax Stimulus Act.
Many politicians "talk" about high gas prices support energy plans that do nothing to produce a single barrel of oil or bring the price of gas down a single cent. I have a plan that immediately addresses high gas prices and increases energy independence over the long term. The American people are tired of political gimmicks and empty platitudes. North Carolinians and all Americans deserve better.
Thank you for your support and I look forward to hearing your thoughts on this important issue.
To learn more about Senator Dole's campaign click here.
We are now halfway through Vertical Day and it continues with a post by Mike's daughter, Sarah Huckabee. In fact her post is so long I am not going to quote it here. However I would like everyone reading my blog to CLICK HERE and read it. There are not many people working for HuckPAC but all of them are wonderful and dedicated. Our hopes and prayers are with them. Sarah introduces you to the staff and I enjoyed learning who they were and what they do.
Missouri Congresman, Sam Graves (6th District) checks back in with his 2nd post of the day. This time his topic is Energy Independence:
I don't have to tell you that we are facing an energy crisis. In parts of my district, gas is over $4 a gallon, and that is relatively cheap compared to other parts of the country. Simply put, we have waited for far too long to address our energy crisis and we are all now paying the price for the failed liberal energy policy pushed by the extreme environmental special interests. Twenty five years ago, we were more energy independent, more self reliant, and more safe. In 1983, we produced 8.6 million barrels of oil a day and consumed 15 million barrels a day. Today, we only produce 5 million barrels of oil a day and consume over 20 million barrels per day. In other words, we are now almost 9 million barrels per day more dependent on foreign oil. It is time for Congress to stop bending to the extreme environmentalists and pass an energy policy that ends our dependence on foreign oil. We need an energy policy that will increase our domestic supplies by allowing drilling in ANWR and off our coasts. We must take advantage of the vast natural resources our nation holds to give families relief at the pump. Our energy plan must also look to the future beyond oil. We need to invest in alternatives like ethanol, bio-diesel, wind power, and nuclear power. There is no silver bullet. We must pursue all options in order to Americanize our energy supply, but we cannot afford to wait. We must act now.
To learn more about Missouri Representative Sam Graves click here.
One of the ways a HuckPAC candidate could participate in Vertical Day is by Video. Oklahoma's Senior Senator, Jim Inhofe chose to participate in this fashion. His video is below and in the video Inhofe describes why he is Pro-Life "Without Apology.
Next up is one of Kevin Tracy's favorites, Luke Puckett, the Republican candidate for Congress from the 2nd District. I didn't know too much about Luke before now but I am really liking him now!
Hello, I'm Luke Puckett, Republican candidate for Congress in Indiana’s 2nd Congressional District. I want to first say thank you to HuckPac for making me your first endorsed candidate from Indiana. Working class families nationwide catapulted Gov. Huckabee into the national spotlight because they realized Washington is broken, and they believed in his common sense conservative vision for the future; it is these same families that are the centerpiece of my campaign.
These families work too hard and are taxed too much to be paying the Pelosi Premium on gasoline and spending an average of $4.00 for a gallon of gas every time they fill their vehicle up. They deserve better than a United States Congress that has, time and again, rejected the opportunity to expand drilling and refinement of American oil, a Congress dead set on repealing the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts.
They deserve better than a Congress who refuses to allow the free market to lower the price of health insurance, and they deserve better than a Congress that plays politics with our troops.
Gov. Huckabee and HuckPac have shown us all that a strong leader and dedicated band of followers can affect positive change long before being elected to office. I am honored with the opportunity to follow in his footsteps, and pledge that every day and every decision in Washington will be made with those hard working families in mind.
To learn more about Luke Puckett's campaign for Congress click here.
On his mission trip to Rwanda for the One Campaign, Mike Huckabee was joined former Tennessee Senator, Bill Frist (among others). Dr. Frist happens to be the next guest blogger on Vertical Day. His post discusses the importantance of Africa in the equation to winning the War on Terror:
September 11 changed the lives of every American, in ways that none of us could have imagined. As we all tried to cope with the terrible tragedy that took place on that day, we began to realize that our world had changed forever and the war on terror has been ongoing since. This battle has taken us to countries all over the world, from Afghanistan to Iraq to the mountainous regions of Pakistan to Yemen to the remote islands of the Philippines and many other places. It's become clear to all of us that we are in a long-term struggle and that our very survival depends on winning.
As a doctor and a Senator I have had an opportunity that few people ever have - to see how helping the poorest and most needy third world countries can actually help us win the global war on terror. Nowhere is this more evident than it is in Africa.
Africa is home to many of the world's poorest countries -- states in crisis-- and it is in these countries and regions that we find Al Qaeda and other equally dangerous groups sending representatives to recruit and train. We must get ahead of this deadly growing web of evil by standing firm in Africa.
Former Secretary of State Colin Powell recognized this when he said "The United States cannot win the war on terrorism unless we confront the social and political roots of poverty." He is right. In Africa, it is into regions wracked by drought, extreme poverty and crippling diseases that we have seen the spreading influence of Al Qaeda. In places like Sudan, Somalia and Eritrea.
We can stop them and it can be done with the help of the healing hands of doctors and nurses.
Since 1998 I have made annual medical mission trips to Africa and have seen first hand how the efforts of the United States government and the American people can and do make a difference.
In the past, American foreign aid was distributed without any consideration for how it would be used. As a result the United States wasted much of the foreign aid we gave to Africa. That has changed. In 2003, when I was the Majority Leader of the United States Senate, we passed a bill creating the Millennium Challenge Corporation. The purpose of MCC is to help the United States reduce global poverty through economic growth. MCC represents a fundamentally different way of giving American development aid to the world's most deserving nations. Providing accountability and generating real results on the ground in these countries is critical. We focus on simple but crucial efforts like providing mosquito netting to prevent the spread of malaria and empowering volunteer groups to deliver the aid and life-saving resources directly.
I have said many times people don't go to war with someone who has just saved the life of their child. That is an important thing for all of us to remember.
That is why when I speak to my former colleagues in Washington, I urge them to look ahead and see Africa for what it can be with our help: developing prosperous nations and friends of America.
This past weekend, Mike Huckabee joined me, Senator Daschle, Cindy McCain and a number of other individuals in Africa to learn more about the good work that is being done there by American charities such as Samaritan's Purse, our doctors and nurses and the American taxpayers who have poured billions of dollars into programs to combat the spread of HIV/Aids. I was very pleased that Mike was able to be a part of this leadership team. We need more American leaders to recognize the importance of our work in Africa on a humanitarian level and a national security level. Mike understands that.
During our trip he suggested I blog about this very issue as part of his Vertical Day forum, with the hope that the participants, candidates and individuals, would come to see why Africa matters.
I thank him for the opportunity to post here today and I encourage you to learn more about these efforts on my website's blog at www.hopethroughhealinghands.com.
So far more than any issue Education has been on the minds of the guest bloggers. The third idea shared by a Huckabee supporter is also about this important topic:
First, I think we must all be clear that the purpose of educating our children is to is to prepare them to be good citizens. They should know our history, our english language and our values. They should be proud of their country, for while we are not perfect we have undeniably achieved a level of freedom and justice which every day leads thousands of people to want to come here. They should understand the value of service and of sacrifice as exemplified by so many persons in our history, from the founders of the republic all the way up to people like Dr. Martin Luthor King. They should know that faith has always been a part of American life though we will never force belief on anyone because freedom of belief is part of what makes us great. They should know it is each American's privilege and responsibility to become the best person they can be, fully developing each and every talent endowed to them.
Having achieved this clarity, we must find ways to share our educational resources, allowing creative new interfacing between traditional schools and home schools. American families seeking to conscientiously teach their children at home should have access to school facilities and staff. In the same way, the public schools would benefit from the energy of home schoolers. Given the technology available, it might be possible to create an entirely new model of American school. We should also frankly assess the financial value of home schooling and consider providing compensation to families in lieu of the money they would have cost the public school system. In exchange, the home school parents might be tapped as resources, guides, leaders for various aspects of the public schools, giving public school kids some of the role models they so desperately need.
In the new model, education would be seen not as focusing on buildings, school or home, but as a network and the community should be involved, too. Why not utilize local business as a support? Why not incorporate lessons in conservation, nature, citizenship out of direct engagement with the people working right around us? Why not have kids help at nursing homes and parks? Why not help keep cities clean? Let them see that they are needed, no matter how young to save this beautiful country.
I believe that our educational system is so badly in need of hope, just as Governor Huckabee has said. We need to teach each child to believe in him or herself and to find their place in American society and in the world as a whole. We must teach them to respect their elders even as they dare to move into a world none of us will see. They must be prepared to deal with technology and science but not to lose their soul to it. They must find the artist in themselves, they must be given the chance to be physically strong and healthy for their own sake and for those they serve. They must learn that what makes an American is quiet faith and generosity, the ultimate courage to pursue our own happiness ever wary that all that we have and are may need to be laid down in service.
Rev. Gregory Limongi
Hospice Spiritual Director
Altamonte Springs, Florida
Stephanie and I were blessed with our first child in the fall, Addison
Addison is a sweetheart, a very good-natured little girl and her
presence has truly reaffirmed and strengthened my belief that we must
defend the traditional family. Marriage and the family unit are under
assault in America today.
The courts, from Massachusetts to California, are working to redefine
marriage out of existence. Our government is spending too much, making
it harder for families to afford the necessities, like gas and food, and
burdening our children with debt. In an era of tremendous
challenges-from international terrorism, to a weakening economy, to
skyrocketing oil prices- we need to make sure we get the fundamentals
We must begin by strengthening the family, not tearing it down.
The November election will be a defining election for our children's
future. Let us not forget who we are fighting for.
Brad Lager from Missouri, is a candidate for State Treasurer. You can learn more about his campaign here.
There were not many Politicians who stood up on principle and stood beside Mike Huckabee during his presidential campaign. However I am very proud of my Reprentitve in the House because he was of those few. With that said the next guest blogger today is John Linder (GA-7). Linder writes to us today about the need to enact the FairTax:
Since 1998 I have advocated for the FairTax. A simple bill--in fact, a mere 132 pages long--that will abolish all Federal income taxes, including personal, estate, gift, capital gains, alternative minimum, corporate, payroll, and self-employment taxes, and replace them with one simple, visible, personal consumption tax. The FairTax taxes what we take out of society rather than what we put into it.
Every household will get cash distribution at the beginning of each month that will be based on the size of the household and will allow that household to buy its essentials untaxed. Beyond that we are all voluntary taxpayers paying taxes when we choose as much as we choose by how we choose to spend.
Our nation has coped with this tax code for 95 years and it has failed. Our tax code has driven $2 trillion into the underground economy costing us about $50 billion in tax collections. Our tax code has driven $12 trillion into offshore financial centers that should be parked in our markets and banks. We are spending between $400 and $500 billion each year just complying with the code. That is like paying for a dead horse. We get nothing for that expenditure but a headache.
Getting rid of the IRS fixes everything. Keeping it in place and nibbling around the edges of the current system fixes nothing. As former Secretary of the Treasury told me, “You have just proposed the largest magnet for capital and jobs in history.” Why wouldn’t we want the United States to be the outsource destination for jobs? Why wouldn’t we want our nation to be the world’s safest and most stable tax haven? The FairTax will give us these results as well as create an environment that will expand freedom.
We have amassed millions of supporters across the country, all of whom are hungry for change. That said, we have millions more to go and we need to grow this grassroots army. I hope you will go to my website, www.johnlinder.com. There you will find much more information on the bill, and you can join the fight by signing up to become a “Citizen Co-Sponsor” for the FairTax. You can play an active role in bringing change to Washington.
The next candidate to post today is Brian Walker who is running to be the State Representative for the 11th Distirct in Texas:
Life is a precious gift and a sacred right. Our forefathers knew this when they crafted the Declaration of Independence; for without life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness cannot be achieved. Some people in this country seem to have forgotten this lesson and would deny life to those who cannot speak for themselves, those who are still in the womb. Using the courts, they attempt to define when life may begin according to their own callous standards and ignore the beating hearts of growing individuals who cannot as yet speak for themselves. The danger inherent in this philosophy is that it attacks the foundation of our rights and liberties. Once they can determine whether or not a person can live, then they can determine how your other rights can be restricted. If we do nothing to stand in the face of this form of tyranny, then we are forfeiting the sacred honor entrusted to us by our Founding Fathers so long ago. Like them we must stand up to those who would deny us our rights and resolutely drive them back. The protection of life is a fight we cannot afford to lose, and we must use all our resolve to fight the injustice that is abortion. We must let people know that life begins at conception and educate those who have become convinced by the other side that they can end the life of their child. We must take every step in legislatures and courts to roll back the “progressive” abortion policies that have been put in place over the years that make it easier for women and young girls to get an abortion. Life is worth preserving and our goal must be to convince Americans that life is not something we can casually throw away on a whim.
Brian K. Walker
To learn more about Brian, visit his website at www.voteforwalker.com.
Another supporter idea has been published to coincide with Vertical Day. The following post is an idea for Health Care reform:
I have worked for family practice physicians for 27 years. My idea
came from one of the physicians who paid off his student loans by
working somewhere near Indonesia. He was a public servant, and his
service was transferred into payments on his student loans. This
seemed like something that would translate into helping with the
health care crisis here in the 50 states.
A. Do not interfere with people who already have health care
coverage. Leave them as is.
B. Gradually, increase the number of public health clinics, and
include hospitals, laboratories, occupational and physical therapy
units, etc. until all counties are covered. Use mobile health
C. NO insurance claims, etc., - as processing these claims is one
of the major costs in health care. Instead, each patient would pay a
$5.00 co-payment (amount could change according to income) so that
the system would not be abused. Each billing would translate into
payments on the student loans of doctors, nurses, therapists, lab
personnel, etc. who would serve in the public system.
D. Personnel serving in this system would be paid a minimal base
salary to cover their living expenses. They would also receive
credits toward paying off their student loans. Once their loans were
paid off, they would go into private or group practice.
D Clinic costs, such as electric, gas, supplies, malpractice, etc.
would be government funded.
This is the bare bones idea, and probably oversimplified, but could
be developed into a workable health care solution.
The latest HuckPAC Candidate to check in today is Rep. Sam Graves from Missourri. He writes to us about the threat of Illegal Immigration:
But more than just terrorism, our unsecured borders are allowing many violent criminals to enter our country illegally. Violent gangs come here to commit violent crimes and smuggle millions of pounds of cocaine, meth, heroin and marijuana, all brought through our unsecured southern border.
People just can't understand why Congress can't get its act together and secure our borders. To me it is just plain commonsense. We need to secure our borders so we know who is coming into the country.
But politicians in Washington just aren't serious about securing our border. First, they tried to pass off amnesty as comprehensive immigration reform, which I am proud to say that I fought to stop. Now, Nancy Pelosi is blocking a bi-partisan bill that will make it tougher for illegal immigrants to get across the border, find a job, and stay here once they get caught.
We have to secure the border. And we have to do it now. Until we secure our borders, we will be vulnerable to terrorists and violent criminals not to mention the impact illegal immigration has on our economy.
You can learn more about Congressman Sam Graves here.
While taking a break to grab a bit to eat and rest my fingers two new posts were published as HuckPAC's Vertical Day continues. First up is the Republican candidate for Congress (NH-2) and longtime Huckabee backer Bob Clegg:
The Right to Life is not simply a modern idiom used for political purpose and mainstream media. It is one of the significant foundations of our nation and it must honored.
The “Pro-Life” issue is not one that can be addressed with a simple black/white answer. Though I am pro-life, that is not the only discussion that we must have. We must address parental notification, for example, and whether these discussions should take place at the federal or state level.
I served in the New Hampshire state legislature for 14 years. During which I worked hard to protect parental rights and to keep life decisions out of the hands of politicians and placed where they belong--with the family. Current law, here and in many states, allows for a minor child to be taken to a clinic to end her pregnancy without a parent knowing. This lacks clear common sense. A 13 year old cannot go to a tanning booth without the consent of a parent, and yet can have a medically intrusive procedure, such as an abortion, without the parent even being made aware.
We see on the news far too often young teenagers meeting older men on line and beginning a relationship. However with the removal of the rights of a parent to care for his or her child, a 13 year old girl in New Hampshire can be brought to an abortion clinic by a 30 year old who caused the pregnancy and the parents will never be the wiser. To allow this lacks common sense. The government has taken over where family belongs.
It is time these discussions take place with the people. Life and the right to life is an issue that should not live within the court system, nor within the federal government. The state government is the best place to hold discussions. Those elected locally by the people have a better and stronger understanding of the needs and philosophies of the people than the federal government—who creates broad stroke laws that can never truly represent the individual issues and dynamics of states. It is a matter of state rights and it is a matter of individual and family rights.
We must remember to respect life at every stage, from childbirth to old age. It is a sacred gift that is to be cared for and nurtured until it expires.
Please visit my website at www.CleggforCongress.com for more details on my campaign.
The next post is by Texas Senator "Big John" Cornyn and he writes about the importance of the appointment of Federal Judges:
Presidents come and go, but federal judges are appointed for life. There is no more pressing concern about a future Obama presidency than his potential influence on the federal bench, particularly through his appointments to the U.S. Supreme Court. The outlook is not reassuring.
With the addition of Chief Justice Roberts and Associate Justice Alito, President Bush has restored some balance to the high court. The two new justices are jurists of impeccable character and record. Sen. Obama voted against both. The Washington Post reported that Sen. Obama was
advised to oppose Roberts by his staff, who feared that a "yes" vote would harm Obama among left-wing activists and interfere with his presidential primary prospects.
If history is any guide, the next President may have two or more appointments to the U.S. Supreme Court. Sen. Obama, speaking to a Planned Parenthood conference last year, faulted the current judicial confirmation procedure, which relies heavily on legal experience and reputation among peers. Sen. Obama had a different outlook on the qualities needed on the federal bench: " We need somebody who's got the heart, the empathy, to recognize what it's like to be a young teenage mom. The empathy to understand what it's like to be poor, or African-American, or gay, or disabled, or old. And that's the criteria by which I'm going to be selecting my judges."
Empathy should not be the prime qualification for the bench. Ability to apply the law fairly, without favor or prejudice, should guide this process. Sen. McCain has been responsible and constructive in judicial confirmations, reaching across party lines as a member of the Gang of 14
to break a partisan logjam over President Bush's judicial nominations. His success, quite frankly, surprised me. He has generally supported nominees of good character, men and women who have shown the ability to follow the law as written, and to avoid substituting their own views for
The stakes are high in this election. Sen. McCain has numerous attributes, including a strong record on cutting wasteful government spending. Some conservatives are irked because he's also shown an independent streak on events of the moment. But federal judges appointed in the next Presidential term will be serving, and rendering decisions, for decades. I would feel very comfortable if a President McCain were making those nominations. Thanks to Governor Huckabee, HuckPAC, and all the bloggers for inviting me to take place in "Vertical Day."
You can learn more about Senator John Cornyn at www.johncornyn.com.
Vertical Day Continues with a post from the Republican Candidate for Lt. Governor of Montana, Steve Daines. He is running on the same ticket as the GOP candidate for Governor, Roy Brown. Steve's post is about Energy Production:
MONTANA'S BRIGHT FUTURE INCLUDES ENERGY PRODUCTION
By Steve Daines
Montana is in a unique position to be a national leader in our country's quest to be energy independent. We have an opportunity to be our nation's leader in both renewable energy resources, like wind, as well as oil and coal. In addition to our huge reserves of oil, Montana sits on the largest coal reserve in the nation. With all this resource potential, it's no wonder why Montana in called the "Treasure State."
Unfortunately, we've seen an increase in bureaucracy, litigation, and gas prices, rather than production of Montana's oil, gas, and coal reserves. Rather than develop our natural resources like our neighboring states, extreme environmental interests prefer to sue to keep our resources in the ground. Neither Montana nor the United States can take another four years of these backwards polices.
Roy Brown and I will bring state regulators and business leaders together in a boardroom, not a courtroom, to find long-term solutions so that we can develop our natural resources responsibly. Affordable gas prices and energy independence are important for our economic stability, and national security.
Now, I know this isn't easy. Roy and I both come from the private sector. We've created jobs, and we've signed both sides of a paycheck. I know that business and government can work together for the common good, and I know we can find solutions to the tough challenges we face because I've been working for common sense solutions for over twenty five years. It's time we use a little private sector innovation in state government. It's time we start seeing results, not just the rhetoric.
It is every state's responsibility to do their part in securing energy independence for the nation. We in Montana have been blessed in many ways, especially when it comes to our vast supply of natural resources. Through innovation and cooperation I see a very bright future for Montana as a leading energy provider, not just for our own, but for our nation.
Steve Daines is a candidate for Lt. Governor of Montana. You can learn more about him here.
OH MY GOODNESS! As I said yesterday, Mike sent out a request for supporters to submit ideas on key issues of the day. Not only was my entree selected but I am the very first to be published!! My ideas follow:
It is clear as day to me that our education system is in desperate need of reform. Our children are our nation's future. They deserve much better than the mess we have now. Ever since the Soviets launched Sputnik, more and more taxpayer funds have been dumped into Education from the Federal level. As the funding has increased the quality of education has gone down. Our children are continuing to lag behind the rest of the world. How long are we going to accept this? It should be clear as crystal that what we are doing isn't working but we haven't seemed to get that message. Now is the time to not only realize there is a problem but to demand positive change and reform to the current failing system. I may not be an expert or have a degree in the field of education (for I am a simple man), however I have a few ideas to improve our current plight in this area.
1. I was not old enough to vote in 1994 during the Conservative Revolution. Despite that fact I remember one of the broken promises of Newt Gingrich's Contract With America. The promise I am referring to the disbanding of the Department of Education. The DoE is a big convoluted mess that is failing us and increasing our amount of debt. It is about time to finally fulfill that promise for America.
2. With the Department of Education shuttered, I think we should focus on transferring more responsibility in educating our children to the states. Doing so would result in some good old-fashioned competition. The citizens in any given state will demand higher standards in education for their students, especially in those states that lag behind the rest. I believe that the competition will result in an increased quality of education across the board, even in the states that happen to lag behind.
3. Speaking of competition, Public schools should not be treated as the only game in town as an option for parents to have their children educated. Charter schools, private schools, and even homeschooling should have equal footing as options. Does that mean I support school vouchers? Not exactly, at least in their current state. For example, I volunteer a lot of time with the Special Needs Schools of Gwinnett, a local private school for children with special needs. The State of Georgia passed a bill last year that allowed parents of special needs children to get vouchers for their education.
While the intentions were great the system has been nothing short of a travesty. The staff is now burdened with increased red tape and paperwork for people who don't seem to care about these students at all. The state now has the ability to have their say in what is and isn't taught to the children (which will no doubt decrease the quality of education these wonderful children receive), and there is no help for parents who send their children to escape the public schools because to qualify for the voucher those students must be put back into the public school system for a certain amount of time. The vouchers have made a mess, a mess that makes you wonder why liberals aren't pushing for vouchers to increase the amount of red tape parents must go through and force Government involvement in schools that they had no access to before!
That is not to say that I am against vouchers. For a voucher system to work, reform is needed from its current form. There is do doubt that parents raise better children than Government can.Therefore every parent in America deserves the ability to choose how and where their children should be educated whether that choice is at a Public, Charter, Private, or a homeschool environment. If the parents of a child decides that the public school setting is not appropriate they should be provided with a voucher to provide for their child's education where they see fit. The voucher should have no strings attached. If a private school is selected the state should have no right to impose their will on said school.
4. Lastly I am in total and complete agreement with Governor Huckabee on the fact that there should be an increase of funds for arts and music education. If it wasn't for classes like Band, Drama and others My mind would not have been stimulated and school would have completely bored me. The more stimulation in the arts and music the better my grades were in areas like math and science because I didn't become as bored during the day. I don't have and can't give you any hard stats but I wouldn't be surprised if the same is true nationwide.
In conclusion, I feel we have a responsibility to give our children the opportunity to have the best education that we can give them. these children are our future leaders. While it is true that we are failing them right now I feel that in four steps that we can greatly improve our education system: Disbanding the Department of Education, encouraging competition between the individual states, reforming the voucher system to give parents more freedom of choice, and making sure arts and music play more of an integral part in education. I could go on forever on this and other subjects but I will hand the floor back to Governor Huckabee, our fine HuckPAC candidates, and other citizens like myself. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to participate in Vertical Day!
The first guest blogger today is Tennessee Senator, Lamar Alexander. He will be posting more today but his first entree is on the need for our children to be taught American History and lessons in Civics:
First of all, I want to thank Governor Huckabee and the community here at HuckPAC for letting me participate during Vertical Day.
I'll be posting on the blog several times throughout the day, but I wanted to begin by discussing the importance of a truly "vertical" issue: American history and civics.
From the founding of our country, we have always understood how important it is for citizens to understand the principles that unite us as a country. Other countries are united by their ethnicity. If you move to Japan for example, you can't become Japanese. Americans, on the other hand, are united by a few things in which we believe. To become an American citizen, you subscribe to those principles.
Still, the sad fact is that too many of our children are growing up as "civic illiterates," not knowing the basic principles that unite us as a country.
It's time to put the teaching of American history and civics back in its rightful place in our schools, so our children grow up learning what it means to be an American. That's why my first legislative act as Senator was to work across the aisle to establish Presidential Academies for teachers and Congressional Academies for students to train our best and brightest in these vital subjects.
And it's time to recognize that one of America's greatest accomplishments is the manner in which we unite our magnificent diversity. Of course, one very important way that we've done that is by speaking a common language, English. Accordingly, I've written legislation to protect English in the workplace and I've cosponsored legislation to establish English as the national language of the United States.
If you'd like to learn more about my efforts to ensure that our children and those who immigrate here legally can better learn what it means to be an American, I'd encourage you to visit LamarAlexander.com and sign up to join my team. Thanks again.
Officially HuckPAC's Vertical Day doesn't start for another 10-15 minutes (At Noon Eastern). However the site redesign is up and running now! CHECK IT OUT HERE. the blog posts are now at the bottom, new tools to help share and spread the HuckPAC message now appear on the page, Twitter updates are on the side panel and the following video is posted at the top of the page. Obviously the video was created before Mike Huckabee was scheduled to take off from Rwanda (which we now know didn't happen).
VERTICAL DAY IS HERE FOLKS! STAY TUNED FOR ALL THE ACTION!!
HuckPAC's Vertical Day is minutes away from starting. However Governor Huckabee will be unable to participate as much as he had hoped. There was a problem with the airplane that he was going to be taking off in from Rwanda yesterday. As you can read (following the previous link) it is very lucky that the plane was able to come to a stop before things went catastrophically wrong. You can read more about Mike's trip to Rwanda and his experinces HERE and HERE
However as they say in Showbusiness, "The Show Must Go On!" & it indeed will go on! Stay tuned. I'll be here all twelve hours to blog about it from cover to cover!
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
We are almost Twelve hours from HuckPAC's Vertical Day. It all gets under way at Noone Eastern tomorrow. As with the first one last year I will be all over it from start to the finish at Midnight. Not only will we be hearing from Governor Huckabee (at the start and finish) and several fantastic HuckPAC Candidates, Supporters will also be featured as well! A few days ago HuckPAC asked for our ideas on several key ideas and eight entrees will be published. So far over 1,000 people have submitted ideas (1 K in 12 hours today alone!). I submitted an entree on Education reform. If it is selected I will share it tomorrow. Even if it isn'tshared I will publish it myself later this week. Wish me luck
Get a good night's sleep everyone - Tomorrow is going to be an awesome day!
Friday, July 18, 2008
I am very proud to make another endorsement this afternoon. Cindye Coates is running for the Georgia State House in District 37. the district is in Cobb County. I live in Gwinnett County (to the East). She is running against the cousin of Former Governor Roy Barnes this November. That should do it right there. We don't need any more Barnes' anywhere near the Gold Dome!
Followers of Mike Huckabee's Presidential Campaign will recognize her slogan (as it was his during his 2008 Presidential run) Faith, Family, & Freedom! This is as it should be because Cindye served alongside me as a volunteer for his campaign through Meetup. We also both serve as advocates for the FairTax. We also are alike in that we serve our communities by volunteering for causes and worthwhile organizations that are close to our hearts.
So why do I think Cindye Coates would make a great State Rep? She will stand firm on the issues that are right. She will fight to protect our 2nd Amendment rights. She will fight to reform the health care system with tax credits to allow us to choose what kind of care we want. Cindye will fight for the right of Georgia parents to choose how to educate their children, She will also fight to keep our waters clean and our land green because (just as Mike Huckabee believes) God has blessed us with our planet and it is a sin to abuse it.
That is just the top of the iceberg. You can find out more about Cindye at her new campaign website. I urge all the people in Cobb County and especially in GA House District 37 to visit the above website. It is my hope that you will come to the same conclusion that I have.
The following are post-campaign reflections from Ray McKinney. I have no regrets endorsing this politician. He stands for the right things. He fought hard against a tide of money and support from the establishment. There is a long, uphill battle occuring to take back to Republican Party for the people. His defeat the other day was a testament to this fact and that we will soon win. It is very difficult to face big money and the establishment and come out with a third of the vote. I again thank you Ray. You fought the good fight and ran for all the right reasons. You have my respect and my support in whatever your future endeavors are!
So the race is over. Sigh. But so many questions remain.
Was it worth it? Would I do it again? How does it feel to lose? Did I learn anything? What am I going to do next?
Well, first things first. Was it worth it?
Yes it was. I got to meet a lot of people I would never have otherwise. Take Dave Cutbirth, my press secretary, a guy living in Reidsville that has served on two congressional staffs. Slightly eccentric, in a cool way, great writer and tons of political wisdom, without this we would have never met. Maybe even my assistant Rick Spurgeon learned a few things about politics and what needs to be changed. Then there are Bob Popowski, Jack Smith, Mike Gibbs and Kevin Parker, Pat Tippet, Gene Smith, Lynn Derriso, Mike Bohannon, Tamra Hadden, Ali, George, Kevin, Frank, and so many others. People I would have never met had I not embarked on this adventure.
Would I do it again?
If I had known how disappointed so many people would be at the end, maybe not. So many people around this district believed that they could finally make a difference. In the end, they did. They just don't realize it.
After all, I wasn't supposed to win anyway because I wasn’t a "serious" candidate (just kidding John, I was serious as a heart attack.)
Those of you on the outside have no idea what went on during this campaign. I mean, what kind of a person leaves his job and put his family through the trials of a campaign with NO support whatsoever from the party establishment?. No candidate in his right mind would spend 6 weeks walking through every county through whatever weather mother-nature had on schedule for that day. Do you have any idea how many pit-bulls are in southeast Georgia? I do.
I think my wife bore the hardest burden of all by supporting our family for the last 8 months while I ran around the district and "played" politician 12-16 hours a day. For any out there who do not think I was taking this seriously, you are sadly mistaken.
This campaign was run on the heart and soul of a handful of people. Talk about seeing grassroots in action, this little team put on a pretty good show.
Just to let ya'll in on a few secrets, the web-work was done by one young man out of Texas, all of the printed materials were designed by another man who handled press and scheduling. Appointments, meetings, and a whole lot of calling was handled by, of all people, my mother. The entire team consisted of one candidate, his mom, a retired man in Reidsville, and 3 volunteers. There were several other people that joined up in the last 2 weeks to help with signs and what not, but this was probably the leanest congressional campaign in modern history.
There were lots of other volunteers like Craig and Tammi, Wayne and Sandra, and many others. All with full time jobs but they took time out of their schedule to call friends and do what they could. These were not politicians, but plain ordinary folk like most of us and they drove a campaign. We had no major financial backers, state or federal endorsements, network of contacts and yet we managed to make a pretty tough showing from scratch.
How does it feel to lose?
I’m disappointed, of course, but when I consider how much we accomplished with little resources, I don’t really feel like a loser. After all, with a low turnout, only the most dedicated Republican voter went to the polls and even with a blast of mailers, robo-calls, and radio over 40% of the voters chose one of the "little guys" and over 1/3 of all of the voters chose our team. Not bad without a single National endorsement, a single legislative endorsement, or a dime of PAC money. Consider that a Georgia State Senator, with years of name recognition, and a pre-existing machine was hammered in their primary.
We too should have been hammered into the ground. John Stone had Max Burns to walk in a parade with him, he had PACs making robo-calls, he got endorsements from the press and almost every state elected official who could fit in the bandwagon. and sent out more mailers than John Barrow. But over 40 percent of the voters chose someone other than John. Without those voters on board in November, no candidate can win the general.
What did I learn?
I have learned that we can make a difference and we can make more of a difference if we keep at it. Rome was not built in a day, Lincoln failed multiple times, and Ford beat out Reagan in '76.
I learned that we have officials that should be replaced. We have some officials that are less than honest. On the other hand we have officials that truly want to do the right thing and our deserving of our support. I have a lot of respect for many of the people I have met in the party and I know others that should be ashamed to call themselves Republicans.
More importantly I have learned that people in this country really do care, but they are looking for leaders they can believe in. There are many of those that do not want to be told who to vote for, they want judge for themselves. They want leaders they can trust, not someone who says one thing and does another. If people do not trust us, they will not vote for us. We have to earn their respect and support. Failing that, they will not vote just to cast a vote.
Right now, the Republican brand is tainted. That happened because our leaders abandoned the conservative principles that gave them control of Congress in the ‘90s. The country as a whole has suffered as a result. We will have to earn the right to lead in the future.
As for me and my supporters: we aren’t going to just fade into the sunset. We are watching, we will NOT be taken for granted any longer, and we are NOT going away. You will have to earn our vote. Most importantly, we will continue to work to bring return the Republican Party to its principals of less government, fiscal responsibility, preserving the rights of individuals and families, and upholding the Constitution.
The hurdle for John is to show that he is more than just a candidate with Washington, D.C. connections and big-money support. He has to convince the voters, and I am one of them, that he will listen to them, not just say what he thinks they want to hear. We already have a Congressman who does that—John Barrow. To win the independents that make the difference in elections, John will have to show that he represents real change, not more of the same. I sincerely hope he can do that.
To all of you that have been watching, supporting, silently rooting, and voted for me, you have my most humbled thanks. It has been an honor and a privilege to be part of this effort to restore our party. I have so much respect for so many of you, for your hard work, your support and your faith in me as a candidate. I look forward to working with you in the future to make a difference in the Republican Party.
On a closing note, I received a note and a quote from a self described conservative Democrat. I thought I would pass the quote onto my "critics" who feel this was a waste of time.
It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better.
The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again, who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause, who at best knows achievement and who at the worst if he fails at least fails while daring greatly so his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Unfortunately Ray McKinney's bid for Congress in Georgia's 12th District came to an end last night as he was defeated in the Primary by John Stone. He did very well considering he was running against a big money establishment candidate. Here are the actual results:
John Stone - 56.7%
Ray McKinney - 31.9%
Ben Crystal 11.4%
McKinney did have a significant amount of grassroots support and he did end up winning the vote in Effingham, Montgomery, & Toombs Counties. Big money wins again and I see little chance of Stone's ability to win over the 12th District in November.
Thanks for fighting the good fight Ray. I'm sorry I could not do more for ya. God's speed to you and best of luck with your future endeavors!
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Today is Primary Day in Georgia, thank God! All the political junk in my mailbox is going to go away for a few months. Bleh! Anywho I hope that all my fellow Peach State readers will do their civic duty and go vote today. In Gwinnett County on the Republican primary ballot is a State FairTax straw poll question. If your county has a similar one please vote yes!
Also if you are reading my blog in the 12th Congressional District, please go out and vote for Ray McKinney. He is just the kind of Republican we need to win back that seat. Click HERE for my endorsement of Ray back in April. Go Ray Go! :)
Monday, July 14, 2008
One of the coolest initiatives during the 2008 Mike Huckabee Presidential Campaign was Vertical Day on September 24-25, 2007. For 24 hours Mike Huckabee's website featured video blogs from Mike, and guests blogs from supporters and endorsers. I was one of of those supporters. You can read the post that became my guest blog HERE It is very hard to believe that almost a year has passed but in reality it has. It was such an honor to be chosen as a Guest blogger for that day and it may not be the best moment from the campaign but it sure does rank up there near the top.
Back to the present. HuckPAC and Mike Huckabee are planning to do it all over again. HuckPAC's Vertical Day will be held Noon-Midnight on Wednesday, July 23rd. The purpose of Vertical Day is to promote HuckPAC supported candidates to conservatives across the nation. There are several confirmed participants already - Senator Cornyn, Senator Inhofe, Senator Dole, Senator Alexander, Roy Brown, Steve Daines, Gilbert Baker and Bob Clegg - And each will produce a post (either via text or video) about the important issues of the day. It is hoped that 4-6 other candidates will participate.
At this time I would like to give a shout out to my fellow Huckabee Bloggers - While we may not be doing the heavy work on the HuckPAC blog next Wednesday it is very important to spread the word around. I plan to cover Vertical Day (as I did the first one) and I hope you will do the same. If you are not a blogger please tell your friends and family about Vertical Day and come and see what these fine candidates have to say.
To coincide with the busy schedule this week Governor Huckabee is a new user on the microblogging tool Twitter. You can now follow Mike Huckabeee and his "Tweets" HERE. Speaking of Twitter I am also a user there and you can follow me HERE.
this is probably the biggest, busiest week for Governor Huckabee on the scene since he dropped out of the 2008 Presidential race back in March! the week began last Saturday in Des Moines, Iowa. Huck returned to the site of our big January Caucus win. He was originally scheduled to be there in mid June but the Iowa GOP Convention had to be postponed due to the terrible flooding they were experiencing at the time.
As at the GOP conventions in North Carolina and Texas, Governor Huckabee made an excellent speech and was enthusiastically received. You can read a report about his appearance, listen to the speech, and listen to an interview with Mike over at Radio Iowa. More coverage can be found in a live blog from the event from John Deeth, HERE.
From Des Moines it was off to New York City for Huck. He is up in the Big Apple at the Fox News studios. He appeared on Fox And Friends this morning and will on Hannity & Coumes this evening. Tomorrow night he'll be in the "No Spin Zone" with Bill O'Reilly. He is also in discussion with the Fox News people about the show he will be hosting at a later date. I can't wait. Unfortunately I am without Cable so I will not get to see Huck on TV this time but I can't wait to hear about the new show!
EDIT: the following is an update from an E-mail I recieved from Huck that he sent to his supporters:
Saturday I was back in Iowa for the first time since we won the caucuses on January 3. Seeing dear friends and “family” that we came to truly love during the process was such a wonderful reminder of how hard our friends there worked to give us such a boost. I spoke at the GOP State Convention and at a fundraiser for the Iowa Family Policy Council headed by Chuck Hurley.
I’m in New York for a few days to meet with Fox News officials and discuss a show I would host as well as appear on numerous Fox programs in the next few days. On Tuesday and Wednesday, a really special opportunity for me—I’ll be subbing for the legendary and immortal Paul Harvey on the ABC Radio Network. As someone whose first job was in local radio in Hope, AR at the age of 14, the thought of subbing for Paul Harvey is truly a special honor.
I get home Wednesday just in time to catch a flight on Thursday to Rwanda, where I’ll be part of a bi-partisan delegation that will include Cindy McCain, former Senators Bill Frist and Tom Daschle, John Kasich, and Leon Panetta and John Podesta. I’m sure it will be an enlightening week and I will try to report to you from there as time and technology allows.
As is usual, my flight to New York was delayed (welcome to the world of airline travel) and it felt much like summer a year ago when I spent many an evening in airport terminals waiting on word of flights grounded by weather, crew issues, or air traffic. I hope you will say a few prayers for me this week---for travel mercies, wisdom in being on shows like Hannity and Colmes and O’Reilly, and for clarity when substituting for Paul Harvey---then start praying some more as we travel to Rwanda for a week.
Of course, remember Tony Snow’s family in your prayers. He was a class act.
All the best,
P.S. Vertical Day is July 23rd so be sure to mark your calendars. Eight candidates have confirmed their participation including Senators Dole, Cornyn, Inhofe and Alexander.
Also, I am now using Twitter to keep my supporters updated on the latest news. So be sure to start following me on Twitter today.
In addition Mike Huckabee is being blessed with opportunity to fill in for the immortal and legendary Paul Harvey on Tuesday and Wednesday. In addition Mike has written a guest blog on Texas Senator "Big John" Cornyn's website this morning on Energy Independence.
If that wasn't enough, later this week Mike Huckabee with be traveling with Cynthia McCain, Bill Frist, Tom Dascle, and others on a bipartisan trip to Rwanda for the ONE Campaign - A Campaign that supports the elimination of the AIDS epidemic and a solution to global hunger and poverty.
Good luck and God's Speed this week Governor!