Thanks a lot, assholes!
Jeb Bush had a rough day at CPAC 2015.
The crowd booed him during his Q-and-A with Sean Hannity and several conservatives walked out during the session.
Conservatives streamed out of CPAC 2015 when Jeb Bush hit the stage.
It’s a good thing he bussed in supporters to cheer for him.
It sounds like Jeb Bush’s supporters are taking CPAC pretty seriously this year. Emails provided to Slate show that backers of the former Florida governor are busing supporters from downtown Washington D.C. to CPAC in National Harbor, Maryland, and organizing to get them day passes into the event.
One of the emails that went out this morning was from Fritz Brogan, a former advance man for then-President George W. Bush who (per the Washington Post) co-hosted a fundraiser for Jeb’s Right to Rise PAC earlier this month. A Bush insider confirmed to Slate that Bush’s Right to Rise PAC is helping organize the transportation.
“We strongly recommend arriving as early as possible to get a seat,” wrote Brogan in an email sent to undisclosed recipients. “Our ‘Early Rise’ team will be there at 7:30am onward helping reserve seats- if you want to join the early team, let me know.”
Jeb Bush, the former Florida governor whose father and brother have both occupied the White House, announced Tuesday he is considering running for president in 2016.
Bush said on his Facebook page that after talking it over with his family during Thanksgiving, he has decided to formally explore a run.
“As a result of these conversations and thoughtful consideration of the kind of strong leadership I think America needs, I have decided to actively explore the possibility of running for president of the United States,” he wrote. “In January, I also plan to establish a Leadership PAC that will help me facilitate conversations with citizens across America to discuss the most critical challenges facing our exceptional nation.”
Bush said the purpose of his political action committee would be to “support leaders, ideas and policies that will expand opportunity and prosperity for all Americans.”
“In the coming months, I hope to visit with many of you and have a conversation about restoring the promise of America,” he added.
Bush’s decision will likely please some Republicans who are looking for some sort of established leader to win the White House from presumed Democratic frontrunner, former first lady, senator and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. But it will also likely lead to grumbling among conservative Republicans who say Bush is too moderate. The former governor has been outspoken in his defense of the Common Core State Standards, a major conservative sticking point.
On Monday, the Christian Science Monitor reported that radio host Mark Levin called Bush a “very good moderate Democrat,” and that former GOP presidential candidate Pat Buchanan said Bush is “too moderate for the Republican base.”
Clinton has not officially announced that she is exploring a run or that she will run. Bush is the first GOP candidate to explore a run, and former Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.) is the only Democrat to take the same step.
Could Georgia’s 10th Congressional District runoff take a page from the Mississippi U.S. Senate race?
Tim Bryant spoke on the radio the other day about a mailer he received urging Democrats to vote for trucking executive Mike Collins in the Republican runoff in the race to replace U.S. Rep. Paul Broun. Collins is running against minister Jody Hice, whose comments about Islam, women and gays have caused a stir.
A reader sent us the mailer itself, which we present above. It was attached to an absentee ballot application. The argument:
“Due to the gerrymandering of our Congressional district, it is nearly impossible for a Democrat to get elected… We, as citizens of the 10th Congressional District, cannot afford a Congressman like Jody Hice. Why you ask? Here are just a few reasons why Hice is too radical to represent us in Washington.”
The mailer does not say who paid for it – and the only reported outside spending on mailers in the race has been by a gun rights group for Hice – so we can’t say for sure it is the Democrats. Hice was willing to assume in a fundraising appeal:
“Democrats are trying to do in Georgia what they did in Mississippi. We must not allow liberals to decide another Republican election.”
He’s referring to the Thad Cochran-Chris McDaniel GOP runoff last month, in which crossover votes from black Democrats appeared to provide the incumbent senator’s slim margin of victory.
Volunteers working for tea party challenger Chris McDaniel in Mississippi say they have already found 20 percent of the invalid double-votes they need to cancel Sen. Thad Cochran’s business-funded runoff victory.
“We’re finished with Hinds County, and we’re up to 1,500” invalid votes, said Noel Fritsch, Daniel’s press aide.
That’s critical because McDaniel can force another runoff if he can find more invalid votes than Cochran’s roughly 7,000-vote margin-of-victory on June 24. Votes are invalidated if voters cast ballots in both the Democrats’ June 3 primary and the GOP’s run-off on June 24.
However, McDaniel can also force another election even if he can’t find 7,000 invalid ballots, said Fritsch.
“We don’t have to prove that we have 7,000 [invalid] votes… all there needs to be is enough doubt about the election, and we’re confident about that,” he said.
That “cancel by doubt” strategy gives the McDaniel campaign an incentive to collect evidence about possible vote-buying and other potentially unethical behavior by Cochran’s campaign.
So far, there are many reports about shady outreach to Democratic voters supposedly undertaken by Cochran and his allies, particularly done by relatives of former Gov. Haley Barbour.
For example, The Daily Caller reported that Henry Barbour, the head of the Mississippi Conservatives PAC and the nephew of Haley Barbour, paid Democratic operative Mitzi Bickers “to make paid calls to potential Cochran supporters.” Those calls may have spurred many loyal Democrats to cast invalid votes.
In the search for improper votes, GOP officials who are affiliated with Cochran’s campaign are trying to block McDaniel’s search for invalidated votes that are recorded in the poll books, Fritsch said.
“They’re stalling in at least half of the counties across the state,” he said.
Some are “asking for large fees, and throwing up every roadblock you can imagine to stop us from seeing the poll books,” Fristch stated.
That resistance “tells us they don’t want us to see the poll books,” he added.
Roughly 84,000 voters cast ballots in the Democratic primary. To find 7,000 invalid votes, more than 8.5 percent of the 84,000 people who cast votes in the Democratic Primary would also have to have cast votes in the GOP runoff.
However, 19,000 absentee voters cast ballots in the GOP run-off, and many of those votes may be improper, say McDaniel’s allies.
“We haven’t gotten into them yet, but we’re confident that is where a lot of their effort was concentrated, and that’s where we’ll find a lot more ineligible votes,” Fritsch said.
The 1,500 invalid votes already detected were found in Hinds County, which is a heavily populated and predominately Democrat county. That’s because – in a state where partisan loyalties are particularly polarized by race – 69 percent of its large population is African American.
There are many other counties with mostly Democratic and African-American populations, but they’re much smaller than Hinds County.
The House GOP conference elected Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) Thursday afternoon to be their leader, once current Majority Leader Eric Cantor – who was unexpectedly defeated in his primary last week by a relative unknown – steps down in late July.
McCarthy overcame a late challenge from Rep. Raul Labrador (R-ID), a Tea Party congressman from the more conservative wing of the party, after Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) balked at running for the position and Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions (R-TX) dropped out last week.
The California congressman is currently majority whip, the third most powerful House Republican, elected to the position by his peers in 2010. He was first elected to Congress in 2006.
McCarthy, who hails from a blue state, has put a premium on fiscal and economic issues but is seen by some as not sufficiently conservative.
“Since gaining control of the House in November 2010, Kevin and his Republican colleagues have blocked the largest tax increase in American history, cut out-of-control government spending by historic levels and passed numerous pieces of legislation that will help create jobs in America,” his official biography boasts.
McCarthy – viewed by many as another establishment Republican – has a current Heritage Action rating of 42 percent and a lifetime 50 percent (compared to Labrador’s 77 percent and 82 percent respectively) and a 2013 72 percent rating from the American Conservative Union and a 90.4 percent lifetime rating (compared to Labrador’s 100 percent and 97.2 percent respectively).
The California Republican in recent months raised the eyebrows of anti-amnesty advocates with his co-sponsorship of the ENLIST Act, which would have provided a pathway to citizenship for certain undocumented youth who serve in the military.
Both McCarthy and Labrador are seen as soft on amnesty.
Numbers USA, an immigration reduction group, gave McCarthy an “F-,” compared to Labrador’s “C+,” this Congress. McCarthy’s low score this year, however, appears to be largely due to his co-sponsorship of the ENLIST Act. Overall, McCarthy’s lifetime rating is an “A” (compared to Labrador’s “B”).
Ironically, many political pundits have speculated that Cantor lost his Virginia primary election due to squishiness on amnesty.
I know it’s not fun to pick on people for their age. Unfortunately, Thad Cochran’s refusal to let go of power all too long past his prime mitigates my concern in that regard. Sources on the ground in MS tell me the Cochran campaign is looking increasingly cartoonish in trying to eek out a win in what most are coming to realize is a lost cause. So, no, it doesn’t surprise me that Team Cochran would hire a Democrat named “Scooby Doo” to work for him at this point.
This is just getting sad…
A Democratic political operative says he is working with Mississippi Conservatives PAC to drum up votes for U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran.
James “Scooby Doo” Warren said he has put together a get-out-the-vote GOTV plan and is “putting it in place across the whole state.” Warren said he is not working with the Cochran campaign itself but for the PAC and Bishop Ronnie Crudup Sr.
Crudup is the pastor at New Horizon Church, which shares an address and chief financial officer with a newly formed super PAC that ran print advertising in the primary supporting Cochran.
More via The Clarion Ledger.