What Political Issue?

Tax, Health Care, Religion, War, Immigration?

Taxing the Rich?

Warren Buffet, one of the richest people in the world, complained that his secretary pays a higher percent of tax than he does.  The reason for this is the many write-offs that rich people can take advantage of and the use of Tax Lawyers.  Now I agree with Warren Buffet and agree that rich people should pay more tax than the poor, although a Flat Tax or a Consumption Tax would take care of that problem.

What I do not believe in is taxing businesses at all. That might shock most people, but then I have that gift of shocking people most of the time. Let me give you three reasons why you should not tax businesses at all but in fact should do everything possible to help business. I would eliminate the corporate tax all together and tax the dividend to the stock holders even higher than now. 

1. You cannot tax businesses even when you try, because you just end up taxing consumers.

2. Businesses are not people and owners do not always make money even when the business does.

3. Businesses are the source of all wealth, even government wealth.

Lets start with the first one. If you tax a business for their profit, the tax will be added to their cost.  Costs are figured as Overhead, material, labor, sales and tax equals cost of business.  Then they add 2% to 25% for profit depending on the type of business or its volume.  Let us assume a 10% profit.  Assume cost without tax is $1000 and tax is 30%.  That makes costs $1,300.  Profit on $1000 is $100 but profit on $1,300 is $130.  So you see the owner makes a bigger profit when taxed.  But the consumer pays the tax.  Without tax the consumer pays $1,100 but with tax, he pays $1,300.  The owner actually makes more money because of the tax.

 Now let us look at number two, businesses are not people. Let us assume the owner made $100,000 profit last year but used $100,000 to add more equipment and hire more people so that he could expand the business, but he, himself, did not take one penny for himself.  This often happens in the first years of business or at expansion times. 

If that $100,000 was taxed then he could not expand the business as much as he wanted and not hire as many people as he wanted.  The tax slowed the very source of tax, the Gross National Product, the production of all our work.  With the same thinking as Buffet, if that same owner takes money out of the business for his personal consumption, then he should be taxed and taxed higher than the less productive.

Now let us consider number three, businesses are the source of all wealth. Let us consider a town, a State and a Country and what they did in the past 25 years. 

The first is a small desert town in Arizona that had a lot of land but only 35,000 people. 30% were out of work and 25% were on welfare.  The few that worked had low paying jobs. The tax base was so low it was hard to even pay the major.  Now the major had two choices, he could raise tax on the few who worked or find a way to create more jobs and bring in more people – a bigger peace of a small pie or a bigger pie. 

He went out and talked with computer companies, who do not need natural resources and offered them free land, free water and electric for the first 10 years, and all the roads and highways they needed to move to this town. After some negotiations and over a period of time, four computer companies moved into the town, and then followed many other types of business.  Construction of houses boomed.  Tax for the town increased 3000% in ten years and the population increased almost the same.  Today there is no unemployed and almost no welfare.

The State of Kentucky had the same problem in the late 1980s and came up with the same solution.  Kentucky using the same approach as the Arizona city went from 25% unemployed to a large influx of needed labor. It is now a thriving State constantly looking for new people.

The Country of Ireland was the poorest country in Europe in the early 1980s. Its number one product was potatoes and its number one claim to fame was drinking and fighting.  Again the same approach was used as in the case of the Arizona town, and Ireland attracted major companies from all over the world offering free tax, free water and electric and low cost labor.  They cut all the red tape for businesses and became the fasted growing country in Europe for over twenty years.  Today their problem is not the lack of money but of inflation, which they did not hold down with low taxes on the people.     

Since Americans do not save money I prefer a consumption tax over a payroll tax but that is another story.

I also do not think the Federal Government should be in things like Welfare, Schools and SSI but that also is another story.  The object here is to make people think about the people they are going to vote for soon.

What’s a Billion?

The next time you hear a politician use the word 'billion' in a casual manner, think about whether you want the 'politicians' spending YOUR tax money.  A billion is a difficult number to comprehend, but one advertising agency did a good job of putting that figure into some perspective in one of its releases.

A. A billion seconds ago it was 1959.  B. A billion minutes ago Jesus was alive. C. A billion hours ago our ancestors were living in the Stone Age. D. A billion days ago no-one walked on the earth on two feet. E. A billion dollars ago was only 8 hours and 20 minutes, at the rate our government is spending it!

While this thought is still fresh in our brain, let's take a look at New Orleans.  It's amazing what you can learn with some simple division.  Louisiana Senator, Mary Landrieu (D), is presently asking the Congress for $250 BILLION to rebuild New Orleans Interesting number, what does it mean?

A. Well, if you are one of 484,674 residents of New Orleans (every man, woman, child), you each get $516,528.00

B. Or, if you have one of the 188,251 homes in New Orleans, your home gets $1,329,787.00

C. Or, if you are a family of four, your family gets $2,066,012.00

Washington , D.C . HELLO!!! ... Are all your calculators broken??

What Tax Do You Pay?

Federal, State and Local Taxes are: Accounts Receivable Tax, Building Permit Tax, CDL License Tax, Cigarette Tax, Corporate Income Tax, Dog License Tax, Federal Income Tax, Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA), Fishing License Tax, Food License Tax, Fuel Permit Tax, Gasoline Tax, Hunting License Tax, Inheritance Tax, Inventory Tax, IRS Interest Charges (tax on top of tax), IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax), Liquor Tax, Luxury Tax, Marriage License Tax, Medicare Tax, Property Tax, Real Estate Tax, Service charge taxes, Social Security Tax, Road Usage Tax (Truckers), Sales Taxes, Recreational Vehicle Tax, School Tax, State Income Tax, State Unemployment Tax (SUTA), Telephone Federal Excise Tax, Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax, Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Tax, Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax, Telephone Recurring and Non-recurring Charges Tax, Telephone State and Local Tax, Telephone Usage Charge Tax, Utility Tax, Vehicle License Registration Tax, Vehicle Sales Tax, Watercraft Registration Tax, Well Permit Tax, Workers Compensation Tax

Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago,  and our nation was the most prosperous in the world.   We had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom stayed home to raise the kids. 


Government Health Care?     

Is free government health care  (run by FEMA)  what we want in this country? You should take a few minutes to see how this system is working in Canada.  I received this today from a career Marine, he just happens to be a Canadian. I believe his thoughts on the recent health care proposal might be of interest to some.

Subject: Health Care

Hey Guys; I saw on the news up here in Canada where Hillary Clinton introduced her new health care plan. Something similar to what we have in Canada. I also heard that Michael Moore was raving about the health care  up here in Canada in his latest movie. As your friend and someone who lives with the Canada health care plan I thought I would give you some facts about this great medical plan that we have in Canada.

First of all:
1) The health care plan in Canada is not free. We pay a premium every month of $96 for Shirley and I to be covered. Sounds great eh! What they don't tell you is how much we pay in taxes to keep the health care system afloat. I am personally in the 55% tax bracket. Yes 55% of my earnings go to taxes.  A large portion of that and I am not sure of the exact amount goes directly to health care our #1 expense.

2) I would not classify what we have as health care plan, it is more like a health diagnosis system. You can get into to see a doctor quick enough so he can tell you 'yes indeed you are sick or you need an operation' but now the challenge becomes getting treated or operated on. We have waiting lists out the ying yang some as much as 2 years down the road.

3) Rather than fix what is wrong with you the usual tactic in Canada is to prescribe drugs. Have a pain? Here is a drug to take- not what is causing the pain and why. No time for checking you out because it is more important to move as many patients thru as possible each hour for Government re-imbursement.

4) Many Canadians do not have a family Doctor.

5) Don't require emergency treatment as you may wait for hours in the emergency room waiting for treatment.

6) Shirley's dad cut his hand on a power saw a few weeks back and it required that his hand be put in a splint - to our surprise we had to pay $125 for a splint because it is not covered under health care plus we have to pay $60 for each visit for him to check it out each week.

7) Shirley's cousin was diagnosed with a heart blockage. Put on a waiting list, and died before he could get treatment.

8) Government allots so many operations per year and when that is done, no more operations. Then you go to your local newspaper and plead your case and embarrass the government.  Then money suddenly appears.

9) The Government takes great pride in telling us how much more they are increasing the funding for health care but waiting lists never get shorter. Government just keeps throwing money at the problem but it never goes away.

But they are good at finding new ways to tax us, but they don't call it a tax anymore it is now a user fee.

10)  My mother needs an operation for a blockage in her leg but because she is a smoker they will not do it despite her and my father paying into the health care system all these years. My Mom is 80 years of age. Now there is talk that maybe we should not treat fat and obese people either because they are a drain on the health care system. Let me see now, what we want in Canada is a health care system for healthy people only. That should reduce our health care costs.

11) Forget getting a second opinion, what you see is what you get.

12) I can spend what money I have left after taxes on booze, cigarettes, junk food and anything else that could kill me but I am not allowed by law to spend my money on getting an operation I need because that would be jumping the queue. I must wait my turn except if I am a hockey player or athlete then I can get looked at right away. Go figger. Where else in the world can you spend money to kill yourself but not allowed to spend money to get healthy.

13) Oh did I mention that immigrants are covered automatically at tax payer expense having never contributed a dollar to the system and pay no premiums?

14) Oh yeh we now give free needles to drug users to try and keep them healthy. Wouldn't want a sickly druggie breaking into your house and stealing your things. But people with diabetes who pay into the health care system have to pay for their needles because it is not covered by the health care system.

I send this out not looking for sympathy but as the election looms in the states you will be hearing more and more about universal health care down there and the advocates will be pointing to Canada. I just want to make sure that you hear the truth about health care up here and have some food for thought and informed questions to ask when broached with this subject.

Step wisely and don't make the same mistakes we have.

Using the same math as above in the example of New Orleans, the present health care plan which is being called “Save the Children” would give health care to those children who do not have it. I could talk about why they do not have it but let us just look at the plan. It would cost $250,000 per child per year forever.

A Moslem For President?

On "snopes.com", we read that U. S. presidential candidate, Barack Hussein Obama was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, to Barack Hussein Obama, Sr., a black MUSLIM from Nyangoma-Kogel, Kenya and Ann Dun ham, a white ATHEIST from Wichita, Kansas.  Obama's parents met at the University of Hawaii . When Obama was two years old, his parents divorced. His father returned to Kenya.  His mother then married Lolo Soetoro, a RADICAL Muslim from Indonesia.?

When Obama was 6 years old, the family relocate to Indonesia. Obama attended a MUSLIM school in Jakarta. He also spent two years in a Catholic school.

Obama takes great care to conceal the fact that he is a Muslim.  He is quick to point out that, "He was once a Muslim, but that he also attended Catholic school."

Obama's political handlers are attempting to make it appear that that he is not a radical.  Obama's introduction to Islam came via his father, and that this influence was temporary at best. In reality, the senior Obama returned to Kenya soon after the divorce, and never again had any direct influence over his son's education.

Lolo Soetoro, the second husband of Obama's mother, Ann Dunham, introduced his stepson to Islam. Obama was enrolled in a Wahabi school in Jakarta. Wahabism is the RADICAL teaching that is followed by the Muslim terrorists who are now waging Jihad against the western world.

Since it is politically expedient to be a CHRISTIAN when seeking major public office in the United States, Barack Hussein Obama has joined the United Church of Christ in an attempt to downplay his Muslim background.

ALSO, keep in mind that when he was sworn into office he DID NOT use the Holy Bible, but instead the Koran.

Barack Hussein Obama will NOT recite the Pledge of Allegiance nor will he show any reverence for our flag. While others place their hands over their hearts, Obama turns his back to the flag and slouches.

Let us all remain alert concerning Obama's expected presidential candidacy.

The Muslims have said they plan on destroying the US from the inside out, what better way to start than at the highest level - through the President of the United States, one of their own!!!!

Would you want this man leading our country? ..... NOT ME!!!

A Mormon for President?

Just want you to know in the Mormon Church there is a prophesy concerning a Mormon who will become President of the United States in the latter days and save the Country from moral collapse.  This prophesy is called the "White Horse Prophesy".  Please look it up! 

By contrast to Christian, Jewish or Moslem Churches, the Mormon Church teaches that there are many Gods (Book of Abraham 4:3ff), and that we can become gods and goddesses in the celestial kingdom (Doctrine and Covenants 132:19-20; Gospel Principles, p. 245; Achieving a Celestial Marriage, p. 130). It also teaches that those who achieve godhood will have spirit children who will worship and pray to them, just as we worship and pray to God the Father (Gospel Principles, p. 302).

By contrast, the Mormon Church teaches that God the Father was once a man like us who progressed to become a God and has a body of flesh and bone (Doctrine and Covenants 130:22; "God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens!" from Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pp. 345-347; Gospel Principles, p. 9; Articles of Faith, p. 430; Mormon Doctrine, p. 321). Indeed, the Mormon Church teaches that God himself has a father, and a grandfather, ad infinitum (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 373; Mormon Doctrine, p. 577).


The Bible teaches and orthodox Christians through the ages have believed that Jesus is the unique Son of God; he has always existed as God, and is co-eternal and co-equal with the Father (John 1:1, 14; 10:30; 14:9; Colossians 2:9). While never less than God, at the appointed time He laid aside the glory He shared with the Father (John 17:4, 5; Philippians 2:6-11) and was made flesh for our salvation; His incarnation was accomplished through being conceived supernaturally by the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin (Matthew 1:18-23; Luke 1:34-35).

By contrast, the Mormon Church teaches that Jesus Christ is our elder brother who progressed to godhood, having first been procreated as a spirit child by Heavenly Father and a heavenly mother; He was later conceived physically through intercourse between Heavenly Father and the virgin Mary (Achieving a Celestial Marriage, p. 129; Mormon Doctrine, pp. 546-547; 742). Mormon doctrine affirms that Jesus and Lucifer are brothers (Gospel Principles, pp. 17-18; Mormon Doctrine, p. 192).


The Bible teaches and orthodox Christians through the ages have believed that Father, Son, and Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost are not separate Gods or separate beings, but are distinct Persons within the one Triune Godhead. Throughout the New Testament the Son and the Holy Spirit, as well as the Father are separately identified as and act as God (Son: Mark 2:5-12; John 20:28; Philippians 2:10,11; Holy Spirit: Acts 5:3,4; 2 Corinthians 3:17,18; 13:14); yet at the same time the Bible teaches that these three are only one God (see point 1).

By contrast, the Mormon Church teaches that Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are three separate Gods (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 370; Mormon Doctrine, pp. 576-577), and that the Son and Holy Ghost are the literal offspring of Heavenly Father and a celestial wife (Joseph Fielding McConkie, Encyclopedia of Mormonism, vol. 2, p. 649).


The Bible teaches and orthodox Christians through the ages have believed that the disobedience of our first parents Adam and Eve was a great evil. Through their fall sin entered the world, bringing all human beings under condemnation and death. Thus we are born with a sinful nature, and will be judged for the sins we commit as individuals. (Ezekiel 18:1-20; Romans 5:12-21).

By contrast, the Mormon Church teaches that Adam’s sin was "a necessary step in the plan of life and a great blessing to all of us" (Gospel Principles, p. 33; Book of Mormon — 2 Nephi 2:25; Doctrines of Salvation, vol. 1, pp. 114-115).


The Bible teaches and orthodox Christians through the ages have believed that apart from the saving work of Jesus Christ on the cross we are spiritually "dead in trespasses and sins" (Ephesians 2:1,5) and are powerless to save ourselves. By grace alone, apart from self-righteous works, God forgives our sins and makes us worthy to live in His presence (Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5-6). Our part is only to cling to Christ in heartfelt faith. (However, it is certainly true that without the evidence of changed conduct, a person’s testimony of faith in Christ must be questioned; salvation by grace alone through faith, does not mean we can live as we please — Romans 6:1-4).

By contrast, the Mormon Church teaches that eternal life in the presence of God (which it terms "exaltation in the celestial kingdom") must be earned through obedience to all the commands of the Mormon Church, including exclusive Mormon temple rituals. Works are a requirement for salvation (entrance into the "celestial kingdom") — Gospel Principles, p. 303-304; Pearl of Great Price — Third Article of Faith; Mormon Doctrine, pp. 339, 671; Book of Mormon — 2 Nephi 25:23).


The Bible teaches and orthodox Christians through the ages have believed that the purpose of the atoning work of Christ on the cross was to provide the complete solution for humankind’s sin problem. However, those who reject God’s grace in this life will have no part in this salvation but are under the judgment of God for eternity (John 3:36; Hebrews 9:27; 1 John 5:11-12).

By contrast, the Mormon Church teaches that the purpose of the atonement was to bring resurrection and immortality to all people, regardless of whether they receive Christ by faith. Christ’s atonement is only a partial basis for worthiness and eternal life, which also requires obedience to all the commands of the Mormon church, including exclusive Mormon temple rituals (Gospel Principles, pp. 74-75; Mormon Doctrine, p. 669).


The Bible teaches and orthodox Christians through the ages have believed that the Bible is the unique, final and infallible Word of God (2 Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 1:1,2; 2 Peter 1:21) and that it will stand forever (1 Peter 1:23-25). God’s providential preservation of the text of the Bible was marvelously illustrated in the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

By contrast, the Mormon Church teaches that the Bible has been corrupted, is missing many "plain and precious parts" and does not contain the fullness of the Gospel (Book of Mormon — 1 Nephi 13:26-29; Doctrines of Salvation, vol. 3, pp. 190-191).


The Bible teaches and orthodox Christians through the ages have believed that the true Church was divinely established by Jesus and could never and will never disappear from the earth (Matthew 16:18; John 15:16; 17:11). Christians acknowledge that there have been times of corruption and apostasy within the Church, but believe there has always been a remnant that held fast to the biblical essentials.

By contrast, the Mormon Church teaches that there was a great and total apostasy of the Church as established by Jesus Christ; this state of apostasy "still prevails except among those who have come to a knowledge of the restored gospel" of the Mormon Church (Gospel Principles, pp. 105-106; Mormon Doctrine, p. 44).

Conclusion: The above points in italics constitute the common gospel believed by all orthodox Christians through the ages regardless of denominational labels. On the other hand, some new religions such as Mormonism claim to be Christian, but accept as Scripture writings outside of the Bible, teach doctrines that contradict the Bible, and hold to beliefs completely foreign to the teachings of Jesus and His apostles.

Mormons share with orthodox Christians some important moral precepts from the Bible. However, the above points are examples of the many fundamental and irreconcilable differences between historic, biblical Christianity and Mormonism. While these differences do not keep us from being friendly with Mormons, we cannot consider them brothers and sisters in Christ. The Bible specifically warns of false prophets who will teach "another gospel" centered around "another Jesus," and witnessed to by "another spirit" (2 Corinthians 11:4,13-15; Galatians 1:6-9). Based on the evidence presented above, we believe Mormonism represents just such a counterfeit gospel.

It has been pointed out that if one claimed to be a Mormon but denied all the basic tenets of Mormonism — that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God, that the Book of Mormon is true and divinely inspired, that god was once a man who progressed to godhood through keeping the laws and ordinances of the Mormon Church, and that the Mormon Church was divinely established — the Mormon Church would reject such a person’s claim to being a Latter-day Saint. One cannot fairly call oneself a Mormon if one does not believe the fundamental doctrines taught by the Mormon Church. By the same token, if the Mormon Church does not hold to even the basic biblical truths believed by the greater Christian community down through the ages, how can Christians reasonably be expected to accept Mormonism as authentic Christianity?

If the Mormon Church believes it is the only true Christian Church, it should not attempt to publicly present itself as a part of a broader Christian community. Instead it should tell the world openly that those who claim to be orthodox Christians are not really Christians at all, and that the Mormon Church is the only true Christian Church. This in fact is what it teaches privately, but not publicly.

Statements of 5 Christian Denominations on Mormonism

Christian churches teach belief in God as an eternal, self-existent, immortal being, unfettered by corporeal limitations and unchanging in both character and nature.  In recent years, several Christian denominations have made studies of Mormon teaching and come to the conclusion that there are irreconcilable differences between LDS doctrine and Christian beliefs based on the Bible.

Huck’s Immigration?

When evangelicals embraced Jimmy Carter during the 1976 presidential campaign, they didn’t know he would repudiate the Southern Baptist Convention a generation later.  Today the very same constituency has glommed onto Mike Huckabee, and I can’t help but lament how history truly does repeat itself. 

One can see why the man I dubbed “Huck the Huckster” would appeal to evangelicals.  He’s a pro-life Southern Baptist minister with charm, wit and a good-ol’-boy, yuck-it-up style.  Yet this resplendent exterior only serves to obscure the stain of liberal sin.

Huck would be a disaster – a disaster – on immigration.  In fact, in 2006 he compared those who would crack down on illegals to antebellum slave masters, saying,

“One of the great challenges facing us is that we do not commit the same mistakes with our growing Hispanic population that we did with African Americans 150 years ago and beyond. We're still paying the price for the pathetic manner in which this country handled that.”

Outrageously, it seems Huck can’t distinguish between denying citizens the protection of the law and requiring non-citizens to follow it.

According to Roy Beck, president of the immigration reform group NumbersUSA, this isn’t out of character for Huck.  Says Beck,

“He was an absolute disaster on immigration as governor.  Every time there was any enforcement in his state, he took the side of the illegal aliens.”

This was evident when Huck condemned Immigration and Customs Enforcement raids on chicken plants in Arkansas.  But his stance was no surprise.  The chicken industry’s powerful lobby was said to be a supporter of Huck’s, and he and Tyson Foods Chairman John Tyson partnered in pandering when speaking to the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), a group sympathetic to illegal immigration.  While advocating what seemed to be an “open-door policy,” Huck espoused the Golden Rule, saying, “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”

My response?  Huck, if I were in another country illegally, I would fully expect its citizens to demand I go home.

But I wouldn’t prevail on Huck.  This is the man who said that Arkansas needed to cherish diversity in culture and language.  He’s the man who opposed a ban on providing state services to illegals and supported in-state college tuition rates for them.  He’s the man who criticized an Arkansas measure to require proof of citizenship to vote.  Like President Bush, he’s a man who would compassionately conserve us into Mexico North.

But, much like Hillary and the flip-flop over drivers’ licenses for illegals, Huck sees the writing on the wall and now preaches holier doctrine.  He has promised to complete a border fence and just released a plan mandating that illegals must return to their native lands to be considered for citizenship (this, too, is a form of amnesty, but Huck’s version of accountability).  Yet, in this interview, he is clearly tepid about even the latter and seems to mock the idea of a border wall.  What did he stress instead?

A path to citizenship.

But that is the Church of Huck: Our Lady of Political Expediency.  He is more old-time politics than old-time religion.

Perhaps this is why Huck is sometimes treated more kindly by liberals than traditionalists who really know him.  While left-leaning pundits Jonathan Alter and Gail Collins have praised him, John Fund writes,

“Betsy Hagan, Arkansas director of the conservative Eagle Forum and a key backer of his early runs for office, was once ‘his No. 1 fan.’ She was bitterly disappointed with his record. ‘He was pro-life and pro-gun, but otherwise a liberal,’ she says. ‘Just like Bill Clinton he will charm you, but don't be surprised if he takes a completely different turn in office.”

Expanding on the Clinton comparison, Fund also wrote,

‘He’s just like Bill Clinton in that he practices management by news cycle,’ a former top Huckabee aide told me. ‘As with Clinton there was no long-term planning, just putting out fires on a daily basis. One thing I'll guarantee is that won't lead to competent conservative governance.’

The kind of governance it did lead to gave Arkansans a net tax increase of $505 million during Huck’s tenure as governor, prompting some to call him “Tax Hike Mike.”  It’s the kind that caused traditionalist icon Phyllis Schlafly to say,

“He destroyed the conservative movement in Arkansas, and left the Republican Party a shambles.”

Getting back to that pandering speech to LULAC, Huck also said, “Pretty soon, Southern white guys like me may be in the minority.”

If he means Southern white guys exactly like him, I can only hope they already are.  Otherwise, he may just have the votes to capture his party’s nomination.  As to this, do we really want a choice in 2008 between a former Arkansas governor’s wife and a former Arkansas governor? 

If my evangelical friends can’t answer that one, I can only say, forgive them, Lord, for they know not what they do.

Pro-Abortion for President?

By Selwyn Duke  SD@SelwynDuke.com     http://www.SelwynDuke.com 

1980 was a watershed year for the Republican Party. The importance of social conservatives to the coalition Ronald Reagan was assembling was such that George H.W. Bush had to renounce his pro-choice past to become Reagan’s running mate. Since that time, every presidential and vice-presidential nominee of the GOP has been pro-life. There is room for debate about what social conservatives have gotten from the GOP; many now complain that they are consigned to the back of the Republican bus. But there is no doubt what the support of social conservatives has brought the GOP: electoral victory after victory, including the re-election of George W. Bush in 2004.

Without the support of social conservatives in Ohio for Bush, we would now be approaching the end of John Kerry’s first term. In fact, in the 28 years since the elder Bush became pro-life to become Reagan’s running mate, the GOP has controlled at least the White House, the House, or the Senate—and often several of these—in 26 of those years.

All of this may be about to change: polls indicate that Rudy Giuliani is the frontrunner to be the next Republican presidential nominee. If Giuliani becomes the party’s standard-bearer and is then elected, the informal prohibition against pro-choice candidates within the GOP will be shattered, and the power of social conservatives within the party will inevitably decline. The bar for future candidates will be set not by the Gipper, but by the former mayor of New York who proudly told CNN in 1999, “I’m pro-choice, I’m pro-gay rights.”

Giuliani’s self description was accurate. As mayor, he marched in gay-pride parades and proclaimed “Out in Government Day.” In 1997, he signed a bill providing to city employees in “domestic partnerships” the same benefits enjoyed by married employees. Giuliani described the legislation as a “significant step forward in the human rights continuum.”

With respect to abortion, Giuliani opposed all efforts to provide legal protection to the unborn. He spoke out in opposition to requiring minors to obtain parental consent for abortions and favored taxpayer funding. When asked on “Meet the Press” in 2000 if he supported Clinton’s veto of a partial-birth abortion ban, he responded, “I would vote to preserve the option for women,” positioning himself to the left of many Democrats. Giuliani told Phil Donahue in 1989, “if the ultimate choice of the woman—my daughter or any other woman—would be in this particular circumstance to have an abortion, I’d support that. I’d give my daughter the money for it.” He went so far as to proclaim Jan. 22, 1998—the 25th anniversary of Roe v. Wade—“Roe v. Wade Anniversary Day.”

There is no reason to expect anything substantially different from a President Giuliani. Whatever grudging concessions Giuliani may make to social conservatives to get elected will not result in a president willing to speak out in defense of traditional morality or in support of innocent human life. And the compromises Giuliani has offered so far are meager. His principal concession to social conservatives has been his pledge to “appoint strict constructionist judges.” But waiting for judges to win the culture war has not been a successful strategy, which explains why some social conservatives have begun to wonder what they have earned by steadfastly supporting Republicans. After all, David Souter, Sandra Day O’Connor, and Anthony Kennedy were all presented as “strict constructionists” to the GOP electorate, and they are the reason the Supreme Court reaffirmed Roe v. Wade in 1992.

In the first GOP presidential debate this year, Giuliani explained that it would be “okay” if a “strict constructionist” justice voted to overturn Roe v. Wade, and “It would be also [okay] if a strict constructionist judge viewed it as precedent, and I think a judge has to make that decision.” Such a laissez-faire attitude to the judiciary will not bring about the overturning of Roe v. Wade. It is useful to recall that Harriet Miers would most likely have voted to reaffirm Roe, and the main reason Miers didn’t make it onto the Supreme Court was that George W. Bush was so beholden to social conservatives that he could not ignore their outrage over his nominee. Giuliani would feel no such pressure.

Giuliani’s supporters trumpet the talking point that the abortion rate in New York City declined while he was mayor. They ignore the facts that Giuliani did nothing to even discourage abortion and that the abortion rate actually underwent a steeper decline in the rest of New York state. Giuliani could as reasonably take credit for the regularity of the tides during his mayoralty. His campaign website also vows to maintain “the sanctity of marriage between a man and a woman.” One needn’t take into account how Giuliani treated the “sanctity” of his own marriages to conclude this is meaningless. Giuliani has not demonstrated any serious commitment to the natural law, traditional morality, or religious principle, and it is easy to see how someone who viewed domestic-partner legislation as a “logical step forward” would someday view gay marriage in much the same way.

By demonstrating how unimportant social conservatives had become to the GOP, Giuliani’s nomination could well transform American politics. Millions of Americans vote Republican in spite of the party’s economic views, not because of them. There is no doubt a Giuliani candidacy would alienate many of these voters, pushing some to their ancestral Democratic home, some to a possible pro-life third party, and some to stay home on election day. Those who remain in the GOP would be part of a party that viewed the war on terror as the premier social issue, as Jonah Goldberg has argued it now is. Quite a descent from 1980.

As dispiriting as it is to contemplate a Giuliani presidency as a social conservative, it is even more depressing to consider it as a Catholic. The last Catholic nominated by the GOP for national office was Barry Goldwater’s running mate, William Miller, a dutiful Catholic and public servant untouched by scandal, who returned to practice law in his hometown of Lockport, New York after the 1964 election, successfully resisting the temptation to cash in on public service by starting a high-priced consulting firm employing dubious associates and serving questionable clients. The only Catholic to be elected president, John F. Kennedy, did have a personal life as scandalous as Giuliani’s, but at least avoided public conflict with Church teaching and had enough wit, grace, and charisma to remain a popular figure decades after his death. Giuliani lacks Miller’s decency and Kennedy’s charm. His election as president would be an embarrassment to American Catholics who agree with what the Church teaches and a disaster for all Americans who believe in traditional morality and the sanctity of innocent human life. 

Now Vote?

I hope the above helps you vote but suspect that it just makes things harder.  What I do believe is that the next president and congress will face civil wars in Lebanon, Pakistan, Sudan, Iran and Palestine.  I hope we pick correctly. 

Richard Salbato 1-1-2008 Mother of God Feast Day