Tuesday 17th October 2017

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Singer Campbell Became Contrite . . . Why Can’t The McCains Of The Political World Do Likewise?

August 13, 2017 Frontpage No Comments


PHOENIX — Country-music giant Glen Campbell felt small back in 2003 after he was arrested for a drunken-driving incident here. A performer made famous with some everyman sort of music themes, he was humbled and contrite after committing the same kind of alcohol offense that hourly wage-earners might.
Having taken the road to fortune with chart-toppers like By the Time I Get to Phoenix, Campbell ended up living among millionaires here north of thoroughfare Camelback Road, but later took his life’s route away from Phoenix, apparently still stung by embarrassment over the incident that started at a strip mall, and deciding to go live elsewhere.
The strip mall wasn’t a high-end location but served everyday commerce like haircuts, dry cleaning, and groceries for folks like me. Nice neighborhood restaurants there, too.
Campbell died of Alzheimer’s August 8 at age 81 in Tennessee.
Just 10 blocks west of that Phoenix strip mall and just south of Camelback Road lives another celebrity, one who doesn’t seem so vulnerable to feeling embarrassment and contrition. He’s “maverick” Sen. John McCain, who sometimes appears to delight at hurting his own Republican Party and cuddling up with liberal Democrats so he can do “bipartisan” deals with conservatives’ foes.
McCain sent shockwaves and raised gasps in the Senate chamber in the early hours of July 28 when he unexpectedly voted no on the “skinny” repeal of Obamacare after having voted no on the full repeal July 26.
He’d campaigned as a leader out to repeal and replace Obamacare, but those were words to gull voters.
Don’t worry, McCain said later. We’ll do “bipartisan” work instead with the Dems on Obamacare. Which, of course, means no repeal. And if he tinkers hand-in-hand with leftist Democrats, expect to see Planned Parenthood lose its fat taxpayer funding about the same time that McCain’s luxury Phoenix condo freezes over in July’s swelter.
When GOP Sen. Ron Johnson, of Wisconsin, tried to throw McCain a lifeline on August 9 by suggesting that the Arizonan’s aggressive brain cancer and the lateness of the hour perhaps affected McCain’s judgment in voting against the skinny repeal, a McCain spokesman snapped right back that he knew exactly what he was doing.
Instead of McCain being grateful that he wasn’t left holding the bag of blame after all, it was GOP colleague Johnson who got slapped around for trying to lift the Grand Canyon State senator out of his abyss.
After a McCain spokesman growled that Johnson’s comments were “bizarre and deeply unfortunate,” an embarrassed Johnson squirmed that “I’m disappointed I didn’t more eloquently express my sympathy for what Sen. McCain is going through,” according to The Hill political news site.
Sometimes it seems that McCain is more than willing to bite off an extended hand, at least if it’s another Republican’s.
Meanwhile, many GOP politicians seemed to have no clue why they should stand up for Americans’ medical well-being by insisting that Obamacare repeal remain an urgent issue.
Repeal Obamacare? Over my dead body, say national Democrat leaders. As for how many ordinary people’s dead bodies need to pile up because collapsing Obamacare destroyed their health-care coverage, that doesn’t matter to these pols unless dominant media were to start putting them on the spot over the victims.
However, these media heaved a sigh of ideological relief that Obamacare was staying in place, at least for now. They had no urge to undo their delightful Democrat Barack’s disaster.
And McCain, having left the Obamacare burden nailed to wage-earners’ backs, headed back to Phoenix for the highest-quality medical care for himself and his tumor.
Political analyst Scott Rasmussen pointed out on August 9 how unpopular Obamacare remains, noting that 6.5 million Americans in 2016 paid a fine rather than sign up for insurance on the program’s exchanges.
This mandate “has always been the most unpopular part” of Obamacare, Rasmussen added. “In addition to those who pay the fine rather than buy the mandated levels of insurance, 15 million people would drop their Obamacare coverage if it were legal to do so.”
No matter how imperiled Obamacare is by its own dysfunction, there may be an even greater danger afoot to the future of Republican pols, the danger that disgusted voters next year will conclude time has run out for these fumblers, who can’t find much useful to do with their congressional majorities.
Conservative pundit Dan Bongino declared in exasperation that if the GOP even had a majority of 70 members in the 100-seat Senate — instead of its actual 52 — the party still would manage to find a way not to accomplish its goals.
Meanwhile, the shrinking Democrat Party at the national level throws its weight around as if it actually has clout. Well, maybe the perception of clout — aided by media distortion — is even more important than the real thing.
Amid sighs of media relief that Obamacare was spared, congressional Republicans sighed in relief that they could take their precious August recess after all instead of getting serious, staying in D.C., and hammering out a plan that would give them cred with voters.
The TV news hours, after all, didn’t report serious storm warnings flying over Obamacare being left intact. Just let these Republicans snooze away until November 2018, when public outrage that liberal pundits always fail to perceive might for a change actually help the donkey party.
Let August slip past then come back to D.C. and — what do you know? Why, Thanksgiving and Christmas are practically around the corner. Not enough time to repeal Obamacare and do tax reform and work on budgets. Let’s wait until 2018. Ooops, that’s an election year; gotta hit the campaign trail. Say, what about promising to get things done in 2019? Or 2020? Ooops, that’s an election year.
Here’s a shell game that’s completely a hollow shell.
Conservative GOP campaign consultant Constantin Querard on August 7 told The Wanderer that Republicans will get the results they deserve in 2018.
“Everyone in Congress, but especially the GOP, seems unaware of just how upset voters are and how little patience they have, particularly for broken promises,” Querard emailed. “If the GOP (Congress and the president) can’t show that they can govern and keep promises, GOP voters will stay home and they will pay a price in 2018.
“If the GOP can govern and keep promises, then the GOP base will turn out and the Democrats may actually stay home in anger at their party’s inability to stop Trump. At this point, it is safe to say that the GOP will get the election results they deserve in 2018,” he added.
Word spread that disgusted donors to the GOP were withholding their money. Giving an example, the conservative Washington Free Beacon site reported on August 8 that Texas-based donor Doug Deason had been quoted by the Associated Press that his checkbook was closed.
“Get Obamacare repealed and replaced, get tax reform passed. You control the Senate. You control the House. You have the presidency. There’s no reason you can’t get this done. Get it done and we’ll open it back up,” Deason was quoted.
Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel sounded a kindred warning on Laura Ingraham’s national radio program on August 7, saying “there is a jeopardy in 2018” for the GOP if it hasn’t delivered on its promises.
McDaniel said she was hearing in response to GOP mailers and from big donors that there’s discontent over the GOP in Washington failing to support President Trump.
The RNC chairwoman and Ingraham also lobbed a specific warning against disloyalty by Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake. Flake is an open-borders, globalist Republican currently preening nationally about his purity and his animosity to Trump.
“There are so many people who will never pull the lever for Flake” next year in his campaign for a second Senate term, Ingraham said.
Interestingly, while claiming to be conservative despite his voting record, Flake also is dismissing conservative voters as backward for disagreeing with him.
Querard, the conservative GOP consultant, told The Wanderer:
“It is difficult to explain Jeff Flake’s actions if you’re trying to explain why someone up for re-election is doing what he’s doing. My sense is that he has decided he’s going to lose, so he’s going to go out guns blazing, which for him means attacking the party, its president, and conservatism itself, all while calling for failed policies like amnesty which are to blame for the current environment. He is likely thinking of his next job more than the one he has.”
With at least one GOP primary challenger guaranteed against Flake, The Wanderer asked Querard if it looks like Flake’s in trouble over being primaried. Querard replied, “Flake’s not in trouble because he’s being primaried, he’s being primaried because he’s in trouble.”
Running for his first Senate term in 2012, Flake growled about how tough he was on border issues until he was safely elected, then reverted to his previous well-known open-borders stand — using the same backflipping strategy as his amigo McCain.
Flake’s tough talk and pro-life stand may have been all that saved his narrow three-point victory over Democratic candidate Richard Carmona. A couple of months after that victory, an analysis in the politics-focused Arizona Capitol Times reported that “Carmona over-performed in several Republican-leaning areas in greater Phoenix, his home base of Tucson, and even rural areas such as Prescott.
“That over-performance helped keep the race close. His three-point loss was the strongest showing by an Arizona Democrat in a U.S. Senate race since 1988,” the article said.
San Francisco-area conservative commentator Barbara Simpson told The Wanderer that “Flake was elected to the Senate in 2012 on a platform of basic conservative values — less government, fiscal awareness, personal liberties — all political virtues appealing to Arizona’s traditional conservatism.
“But once in office, Flake swerved — actively speaking out against Donald Trump even before he was the GOP candidate, and that opposition hasn’t stopped,” she said. “He also tells Arizonans he doesn’t think the health-care act will be repealed or replaced in this term, or perhaps ever. That isn’t music to the ears of Arizonans, who pay some of the highest premiums in the country, if they can even find an insurer.
“Before he ran for the Senate, Flake had an open-borders reputation, which he pretended he repudiated until he got elected to the upper chamber. But then he swerved back to ‘a pathway to citizenship’ for nearly all immigrants, and increasing the annual numbers. He blasts Republicans as ‘nativists’ who criticize illegal immigrants, saying they should be ‘purged from the party’,” Simpson said.
“It’ll be a rough primary.”
The Wanderer asked a Phoenix GOP activist, Rob Haney, about the possibility of Republicans losing their majorities in 2018. Haney, retired chairman of the local Maricopa County Republican Party, focused on whether GOP conservatives would lose.
“The Republicans In Name Only (RINOs) believe they have demonstrated, with overwhelming success during the last 60 years, the strategy to maintain power over the GOP. Therefore, they do not fear losing RINO seats to conservatives. The strategy is simple,” he said.
“The Republican National Committee will back the RINO in the primary against the conservative. They may also ‘encourage’ another Republican to run to split the conservative vote. The RINO usually wins these contests and then the unity strategy card is played,” Haney said. “‘We can’t allow a far-left liberal to win the seat. Conservatives must unite with moderates for a Republican victory.’
“It seems to work every time. McCain has used it repeatedly,” he said. “In those rare instances where a conservative wins the primary, he/she can count on diminished support from the RNC, and socially liberal Republicans have demonstrated they have no qualms about supporting the Democrat. The establishment wins with a RINO or Democrat and maintains their power. And that is why the political spectrum continually moves left.”

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Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

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Catholic Replies

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