What you and Carter Page and Donald Trump have in common.

Any American Citizen File

Who allowed FISA surveillance abuse? New attorney general must find out

BY: FRANCEY HAKES, OPINION CONTRIBUTOR, The Hill

When I worked at the Office of Intelligence Policy and Review at the Department of Justice (DOJ), the procedure for obtaining a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant was an object lesson in checks and balances. Given the near-daily revelations about the underpinnings of the various investigations into President Trump and his inner circle, those checks and balances weren’t just ignored — they were thrown permanently out the window in the name of securing his election defeat or later removal from office.

We are privileged to live in a country where the rule of law and our tradition of professional law enforcement protect us from the kind of corruption rife in many other countries. But the conduct of the FBI and the Department of Justice in opening multiple investigations into President Trump and his inner circle calls that professionalism into question in a way that should concern us all, regardless of our political leanings.

In 1975, the Church Committee was formed by Congress to investigate whether the intelligence community was using its various surveillance technologies to target political enemies. Three major agencies — National Security Agency (NSA), CIA, and FBI — were all found to be illegally targeting Americans such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Muhammad Ali without court supervision, permission or warrants as required by the Constitution. In response to this shocking finding, Congress in 1978 passed the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which was designed to impose strict controls on the use of clandestine surveillance tools against Americans to ensure they were never again used for political purposes.

There were strict guidelines and procedures in place for obtaining a FISA surveillance warrant when I was on special detail to the Office of Intelligence Policy and Review inside the Department of Justice in 2004 and 2005. Before the FBI brought an application to me as the department attorney who would swear to it and present it to the FISA Court, the application went through a series of reviews inside the FBI. These reviews are designed to ensure that a neutral person agrees there is sufficient evidence that the target of the warrant is an agent of a foreign power engaging in espionage or terrorism.

Generally, these warrants are never intended for use in criminal courts. They largely are used to gather intelligence that will aid in protecting national security. They also mostly are used to target foreign nationals in this country. If the target is a U.S. person, the department attorney must establish in the application for a warrant that the person is acting as the agent of a foreign power and, additionally, that he or she likely engaged in conduct that violates U.S. criminal statutes. As with criminal warrants, the factual assertions made to support the allegation that the target is an agent of a foreign power engaged in possible criminal activity must be reliable. That is, a bare assertion is not enough; it must be supported by reliable information and evidence.

Once the review is complete at the FBI, the agent presents the application to a department attorney for review and submission to the FISA Court. At this stage, the attorney must verify every paragraph of the application. This is done in consultation with the agent. I was trained to ask the agent how he or she knew each “fact” asserted in every paragraph. Importantly, I would be swearing to the application’s accuracy before the court, so I had a critical incentive to ensure the facts were accurately portrayed. My license, my reputation were on the line.

But, I had to rely upon the representation of the agent, and the FBI, CIA or NSA, to give me accurate information. I certainly couldn’t go out and verify the assertions myself. Once I was confident that each paragraph was accurate, and that the requirements of the statute were met, that application then went through several more people above me, supervisors who also were professional DOJ career attorneys, before it reached the final level of approval by the deputy attorney general. Only then, after purportedly neutral review inside the FBI and DOJ, would a FISA application be submitted to the court for approval.

We now know that the unverified allegations in the so-called Steele dossier were asserted as reliable facts in the original FISA warrant and three renewals against former Trump campaign volunteer adviser Carter Page. Former FBI director James Comey admitted as much in testimony long after the FISA warrant was issued. How could this happen? That is what the new attorney general must find out.

How could all the controls in place to protect Americans from clandestine surveillance fail so miserably? It is important to note that many more Americans beyond Carter Page likely were surveilled by the FBI. Every person with whom Page communicated had their emails or text messages captured and reviewed, potentially going back years.

The Obama administration was unveiling the names of Americans captured in FISA surveillance at record rates. This spider web of captures and potential invasion of privacy is exactly why it is so serious to utilize clandestine surveillance tools against Americans. And, it is why there are so many steps required to surveil Americans using those tools. Regular criminal warrants against criminal suspects have disclosure requirements so targets eventually know they have been surveilled. In contrast, clandestine surveillance may go undisclosed forever. So, many Americans may never know — and likely don’t to this day in the case of those with whom Page communicated — that they have been surveilled by government agents.


Why do we care that Page and many other Americans had their emails or other messages intercepted and reviewed based upon unverified allegations? If you think President Trump and his associates are dangerous, evil, stupid, or unqualified, then you might not care. The ends justify the means to you. But what if this supposedly dangerous, evil, stupid, unqualified president uses those same failures to his advantage and against his own enemies?

The new attorney general must investigate how this happened by tracing each person in the chain of the Page FISA warrants. Each must be asked about the factual assertions made under oath.  Someone is accountable. Someone inside the Justice Department must answer for the abuse of our surveillance assets and sworn misrepresentations to the FISA Court. If they don’t, it will happen again. And again.


Francey Hakes was a prosecutor for 16 years and now consults on national security and the protection of children. As a former assistant U.S. attorney, she appeared before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, presenting applications for counterterrorism and counterespionage warrants on a special detail to the Department of Justice Office of Intelligence Policy and Review. She served as the first National Coordinator for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction from January 2010 to March 2012. Follow her on Twitter @FranceyHakes.

https://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/425913-who-allowed-fisa-surveillance-abuse-new-attorney-general-must-find-out

Trump and His Followers Explained By Hanson

Editor’s note – Victor Davis Hanson deftly compares the hypocrisy on the left and does a remarkable job comparing the actions and words of current candidates against Donald Trump and provides and his insights to give us a clear look at the interesting campaign Mr. Trump is running.

This in no way denotes an endorsement of any candidate but rather shows the bones of the body politic now in full view. Now that Iowa is over and New Hampshire becomes the showcase, expect many more examples of double standards, mean words, dirty tricks, and outright mis-characterizations to abound at Mr. Trump and emanating from him.

Forget Trump but Not the Trumpsters

By Victor Davis Hanson — National Review

Memo to RNC: Stop ridiculing Trump and look at what voters see in him.

A disclaimer: Trump is not my preferred candidate. I hope he does not win the Republican nomination. But I understand why millions seem to be mesmerized by his rhetoric.

I certainly wish that Trump would not insult rivals and newspeople in callous and uncouth fashion. I would prefer that he come prepared to interviews, with detailed positions rather than his banal “Make America great again” refrain, so akin to the “Hope and Change” nothingness.

BIRCH RUN, MI - AUGUST 11: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at a press conference before delivering the keynote address at the Genesee and Saginaw Republican Party Lincoln Day Event August 11, 2015 in Birch Run, Michigan. This is Trump's first campaign event since his Republican debate last week. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

I notice that he often pauses in midsentence, that he interjects “awesome” and “tremendous” ad nauseam, that he completely abandons his original thought and detours to an extraneous topic.

He is a tough brawler, but oddly hypersensitive when his own brand of invective is turned against him. Trump may be an audacious captain of industry, but he certainly pouts a lot.

Trump’s use of I, me, my, and mine rivals Obama’s. By now it is thematic that Trump is likely to erupt into anger if he perceives observers as hostile — the anger often in contrast to his earlier praise of these same targets.

An ignoramus who adores Trump will be dubbed “brilliant”; accomplished people who criticize Trump are caricatured as ignoramuses.

Yet the question is not whether Trump comes across as a scatter-shot speaker, a bully, an adolescent, and a narcissist — he does — but whether, by the standards of our postmodern, 21st-century culture, he is, as is usually alleged, an aberrant political figure, so beyond the pale that he cannot be taken seriously as a presidential candidate.

In relativist terms, I’m afraid that is just not true.

So far, Trump’s slash-and-burn style is working because, despite a few notable exceptions, he for the most part has slandered and smeared political and media elites of both parties, whom millions apparently neither respect nor worry much about.

For a Trump supporter, fretting whether a zillionaire media celebrity was justifiably offended by Trump is analogous to losing sleep because multimillionaire celebrity Will Smith is unhappy that he did not win an Oscar and alleges that he was robbed of his laurels by the ultra-liberal but apparently racist Hollywood community.

Sure, there is principle involved, but it rates below worry over the nation’s $20 trillion in debt, the Iran deal, and sanctuary cities.

Yes, Trump despicably caricatured a handicapped person. One would hope that he regrets those frequent off-the-cuff smears and will never stoop so low again.

But his supporters believe that his crudity is hardly worse than the calm and composed president of the United States caricaturing the Special Olympics in a softball interview, or Joe Biden unthinkingly asking a man in a wheelchair to “stand up.” Did the media ostracize either?

Trump used insensitive and inexact language in outlining his opposition to illegal aliens — though in a manner far less illiberal than what is written about immigration in the Mexican constitution. But did he ever appeal directly to his largely white audiences and tell them he was going to “punish our enemies,” in the way Obama did with a Latino group? Was Obama thereby declared a demagogue?

Is Trump’s crude use of “bimbo” — as in the Clintons’ use of “bimbo eruption” —  a bookend to Obama’s habitual “sweetie”? Has Trump, in Eric Holder fashion, referred to whites as “my people,” or has he ridiculed a “typical black person,” or weighed in on a hot-button criminal case, siding, racially, with the deceased by stating, “If I had had a second daughter, she would have looked like this girl”?

Trump has not said that Obama is “clean” and does not speak in “a Negro dialect,” as Harry Reid and Joe Biden once did. He has not talked of women as trailer-park trash, as Clinton advisers have in their efforts to destroy victims of Bill Clinton’s wantonness. He did not chortle about successfully defending a rapist or gloat about Qaddafi being torn apart by a mob.

These comparisons to major Democratic figures could be easily expanded, but the issue is not tu quoque. The point is only that Trump is well within today’s political norms — at least the debased norms established by our corrupt media and by public perceptions of what is said and done by supposedly caring and empathetic progressives such as Obama, Clinton, Biden, and Reid. The battle to create a polite and courteous society in 21st-century America was lost some years ago — often by hypocrites who now both engage in and deplore political smear and slander.

Trump is certainly vague on the issues, both deliberately so and because of his lack of preparation. But does anyone think he is any more unpredictable on, say, illegal immigration than what a President Jeb Bush might actually do in office?

Does Trump, like Obama, really believe that FDR as president addressed the nation on television in 1929? If Trump were to say that, wouldn’t he be written off as a buffoon? If Trump, who apparently slips up when referring to the Bible, tomorrow praised some soldiers as “Corpse-Men,” wouldn’t the Washington Post dismiss him as half-educated? Would he lie to the families of the men killed in Benghazi about the cause of their loved ones’ deaths?

“Who knows what a President Trump might do or say?” is a legitimate concern, given the daily Trump flip-flops and his liberal past and core. But did Obama in 2008 voice his support for gay marriage or confess that he would double the national debt, would serially lie about his health-care bill in order to pass it, and would dismantle the post-war role of the United States abroad?

On the debt, illegal immigration, the Iran deal, and tax reform, is a vague Trump worrisome while an explicit Hillary Clinton is reassuring?

Trump is a wheeler-dealer and seems to relish the idea that he predicates his behavior on the law of the jungle in “business.” Would he then preside over a corrupt IRS in Lois Lerner fashion, turn the EPA into an arm of his green donors, reduce the Secret Service, DHS, ICE, and GSA to caricatures of themselves, define NASA’s “foremost” mission as outreach to Muslims, run guns to Mexico, politicize the Justice Department, or turn a blind eye to abject corruption and criminal (and lethal) incompetence at the VA?

Would he set up a private e-mail server in Trump Tower, and cut and paste classified documents so he could send them without scrutiny to his political hatchet men? At some point, cannot Republicans run against what has happened rather than what they fear might happen? We are worrying about aftershocks in the midst of an earthquake hitting 8.9 on the Richter scale.

Yes, we should aspire to absolutes and not define morality down, but before we lose our collective heads over Trump, it is valuable to take a deep breath and look hard at the alternative reality that we now assume is normal in the age of the Obama administration and its enablers in the media.

If Trump were to call his opponents fascists likely to replicate Nazi Germany if they came to power, then he would be in good company with FDR in 1944.

If he were caught on an open mike joking about bombing nuclear Russia, then would he be Reaganesque? If he really flipped out and claimed that he had to battle an amphibious rabbit with his paddle, then he would be resonating Jimmy Carter. Does he, in adolescent fashion, boast to his adoring crowds that he is taking his gun to a knife fight, tell his people to get in the faces of his enemies, or belittle the inner city as a bunch of scared people who cling to their superstitions and phobias? If so, then he would be in full Obama mode.

Trump monotonously talks of “deals,” suggesting that the presidency could be reduced to a Manhattan land swap. I suppose, then, he would dismiss his congressional opponents shortly after he entered office with a curt “I won.” Would his advisers then compare Democratic legislators to terrorists “with bombs in their vests” or caricature them as bookends to hard-core Iranian theocrats?

The presidency is not a priesthood. And Trump is about as sinful or saintly as many who have run for it — and held it — in the present and past.

Rather than demonize Trump as an aberrant figure in the long history of American politics — which includes the populist demagogue Huey Long, the ego-driven outsider Ross Perot, and the street brawler Jesse Jackson — we should wonder why he is so popular and listen to those who support him.

The answer is fairly simple and hinges on two considerations. One, in stylistic terms, Trump is blunt, energetic, a member of the elite openly contemptuous of the elite and the politically correct — at a rare moment when half the country despises not just all that but also those who know better but are too timid to voice their own similar contempt.

He plays by no campaign or media rules in an age when one out of two voters thinks such rules are constructs set up by careerists. Trump took the idea of a hypocritical limousine liberal and turned it on its head: He claims to be everyman’s elite champion, who has the tools and who knows best how to smash elites.

In this age, half the country wants someone — apparently anyone, even a Manhattanized former Democrat, real-estate barker, and former reality-TV host — to express their contempt for a corrupt and hypocritical government culture.

Too many people are tired not just of illegal immigration, but of the enablers of illegal immigration, who smear as racists and xenophobes those who just want existing laws enforced, while the enablers predicate their own agendas on racist assumptions and ethnic chauvinism.

Does anyone believe that news anchor Jorge Ramos would be an advocate for a mass influx of Russians flooding illegally into East Los Angeles? Do his children go to schools where half the students do not speak English?

Forget Trump and consider instead Trump’s constituencies. They are weary of being lectured that they deserve presidential rebuke for their supposed Islamophobia because they are angry about the terrorist killings of Americans.

The middle classes are exhausted from being sermonized that they do not “pay their fair share,” when their state and federal tax bite is nearly 50 percent — especially when half the population pays no income tax, and massive federal entitlements have done little to address the pathologies of the underclasses.

The contractor and the insurance salesman are furious at being scolded that “they didn’t build” their businesses, when those doing the scolding are pampered elites like Elizabeth Warren and Barack Obama, who never built anything other than grievance careers.

Every demagogue, real or fictional, from Cleon to Catiline to Lonesome Rhodes to Ross Perot, owes his career to a fossilized, arrogant ruling class and its impotent opposition that fails to address the anxieties of the middle classes.

Second, is there an antidote offered by any other candidate to Trump’s vague and shifting agenda? Could any Republican promise to end racial quotas and base affirmative action on class rather than skin color, and thus suggest that Eric Holder’s kids should not have a leg up on the offspring of an unemployed Appalachian miner?

Could Republicans reform the tax code without conflating the upper middle class with the multimillionaire class, as if a couple earning $2 million a year needs the same sort of tax relief as those earning $200,000?

Instead of serially ridiculing Trump’s admittedly strange suggestion that Mexico must pay for the completion of the fence (ca. $3 to $5 billion), could they instead agree to a 10 percent federal surtax levied on all remittances sent abroad by undocumented U.S. residents — which would raise just about $3 to $5 billion?

Trump has done the Republican party lots of damage, but he has also done it some good by reminding its leaders that victory lies in swinging a ball and chain through the flimsy glass mirror of political correctness and the current liberal spectacle of very wealthy people projecting race and class injustice onto others as a way of excusing their own privilege.

Far better than ridiculing Trump as a showboat would be to show more constructive passion than does Trump and to discover what makes sane citizens see him as their last resort. Rather than dismissing his empty populism, it would be wiser to fill it in.

Respect and listen to and learn from Trump voters — and they will not vote for Trump.


NRO contributor Victor Davis Hanson is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the author, most recently, of The Savior Generals.

Trump: Obama is a Clear and Present Danger to America

Editor’s Note – This article was republished by Special Operations Speaks.

Obama welcomes an Islamist Trojan horse: Consider who is selecting our refugees

By Jeffrey T. Kuhner – World Tribune

“President Obama is a threat to our country,” Donald Trump told me in a recent interview.

He’s right. Mr. Obama now poses a clear and present danger to America.

His stubborn insistence on resettling so-called “refugees” from Syria threatens to Balkanize our country and subvert it from within. The president is willing to potentially sacrifice countless Americans on the altar of liberal multiculturalism. He is gambling with our lives.

Obama’s resettlement plan is replete with lies and progressive propaganda. At first, the administration said it only wanted 10,000 refugees to enter the country. Now, the White House is openly talking about allowing 250,000 per year.

In fact, the president recently announced that his goal is an “open-ended” refugee resettlement effort — meaning millions could be allowed to flood our country.

If-you-dont-defend-liberty-get-UN-Islam-or-communism

Moreover, who are these refugees? The answer is simple: They are predominantly young Muslim men. In Europe, nearly 80 percent of the migrants pouring into countries, such as Germany, Sweden and France, are Muslim males in their teens and 20s. In other words, they are the very profile of potential Islamic Jihadists.

Yet, while Europeans are waking up to the civilizational invasion taking place, our morally arrogant liberal elites continue to peddle the fiction that only “widows and orphans” will be allowed to enter.

The administration also claims that the Muslim Syrian refugees are the “most thoroughly screened and vetted category of travelers” who can come into the United States.

That is another lie. For the Obama regime and its media allies are deliberately leaving out one salient fact: We do not pick the asylum-seekers, the United Nations does. In particular, it is the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Antonio Guterres, in coordination with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) that selects which refugees can be settled within our country.

It is not the State Department, Homeland Security or even the White House that chooses the refugees, but an anti-American leftist bureaucrat and a global Islamist organization.

Mr. Guterres is a self-described “socialist,” who champions open borders and repopulating First World nations with Third World peoples as part of a radical internationalist agenda to redistribute wealth. From 1999 until 2005, he was the president of Socialist International, a global network of over 160 Marxist and far-left-wing parties active in about 100 countries. Their goal: “one-world government” through unlimited immigration.

The OIC is an international Islamic body that consists of 57 Muslim nations. It has deep links to the Muslim Brotherhood. Based in Saudi Arabia, the OIC’s founding charter openly espouses the expansion of Sharia Law and defends what it calls “legitimate Jihad.” In other words, it is an Islamist front group.

Think about this: Obama is entrusting the security of Americans — enabling the very “refugees” who could be coming to a town or community near you — to U.N. leftist globalists and radical Islamists. His policy is not only irresponsible and reckless; it borders on the criminal.

trump-obama-christiansThe Islamic State of Iraq and Levant has already boasted it has infiltrated the waves of Muslim migrants with thousands of Jihadists.

In the Paris attacks, which killed 130 and wounded over 350 persons, ISIL made good on its threats: One of the terrorists managed to enter France posing as a “refugee” with a fake Syrian passport.

As Investor’s Business Daily reports, what Islamists are engaging in is what they call “hijra” — immigration Jihad. The aim of radical Muslims is to invade and conquer Western lands through mass migration.

“Muhammad told his followers to migrate and spread Islam in order to dominate all the lands of the world,” Ann Corcoran, the author of “Refugee Resettlement and the Hijra to America,” said in an interview with IBD.

“He said they were obliged to do so — and that’s exactly what they are doing now with the help and support of the U.N.”

The Boston Marathon terrorist bombings should have taught Americans the folly of welcoming “refugees” from Muslim hotspots. The Tsarnaevs were from Chechnya. They were allegedly “screened” and “vetted.”

Yet, this did not stop them from blowing up pressure cooker bombs at the finish line, murdering four innocent civilians and wounding over 260 — dozens of them maimed and crippled.

Their massacre was part of a larger war against the West to establish a global Islamic caliphate.

We are about to drink from a poisoned chalice. Obama is deliberately — and dangerously — bringing in an army of Muslim migrants. Like the Tsarnaevs and in France, some of them are bound to be Islamist butchers.

It is collective suicide masquerading as compassion. Americans must block his Trojan horse before it’s too late.


Jeffrey T. Kuhner is a columnist at WorldTribune.com and the host of “The Kuhner Report” weekdays 12-3 pm EST on WRKO AM-680 in Boston.

Be Sociable, Share!

And You Think Trump Is Going To Destroy The Republican Party?

Editor’s Note – It’s a bizarre thing existing in a Netherworld where you neither support nor despise Republican frontrunner Donald Trump.

The benefits of this new media world of ours, this awe-inspiring world of social media and instant online publishing, far outweigh the negatives.

One obvious negative is that our politics are becoming a bit more shrill, sometimes to the point where if you haven’t yet taken a side, one will be assigned to you.

An Open Letter To Jonah Goldberg – RE: The GOP and Donald Trump

By Sundance – The Last Refuge

A few days ago I took the time to read your expressed concerns about the support you see for Donald Trump and the state of current conservative opinion.  Toward that end I have also noted additional media present a similar argument, and I took the time to consider.

goldberg-headshot

While we are of far lesser significance and influence, I hope you will consider this retort with the same level of consideration afforded toward your position.

The challenging aspect to your expressed opinion, and perhaps why there is a chasm between us, is you appear to stand in defense of a Washington DC conservatism that no longer exists.

I hope you will indulge these considerations and correct me where I’m wrong.

On December 23rd 2009 Harry Reid passed a version of Obamacare through forced vote at 1:30am.

The Senators could not leave, and for the two weeks previous were kept in a prolonged legislative session barred returning to their home-state constituencies.

It was, by all measures and reality, a vicious display of forced ideological manipulation of the upper chamber.

I share this reminder only to set the stage for what was to follow.

Riddled with anxiety we watched the Machiavellian manipulations unfold, seemingly unable to stop the visible usurpation.

Desperate for a tool to stop the construct we found Scott Brown and rallied to deliver $7 million in funding, and a “Kennedy Seat” victory on January 19th 2010.

Unfortunately, the trickery of Majority Leader Harry Reid would not be deterred.  Upon legislative return he stripped a House Budgetary bill, and replaced it with the Democrat Senate version of Obamacare through a process of “reconciliation”.

Thereby avoiding the 3/5ths vote rule (60) and instead using only a simple majority, 51 votes.

Angered, we rallied to the next election (November 2010) and handed the usurping Democrats the single largest electoral defeat in the prior 100 years.  The House returned to Republican control, and one-half of the needed Senate seats reversed.

Within the next two election cycles (’12 and ’14) we again removed the Democrats from control of the Senate.

Within each of those three elections we were told Repealing Obamacare would be job #1.  It was not an optional part of our representative agreement to do otherwise.

From your own writing:

[…]  If you want a really good sense of the damage Donald Trump is doing to conservatism, consider the fact that for the last five years no issue has united the Right more than opposition to Obamacare. Opposition to socialized medicine in general has been a core tenet of American conservatism from Day One. Yet, when Republicans were told that Donald Trump favors single-payer health care, support for single-payer health care jumped from 16 percent to 44 percent.  (link)

With control of the House and Senate did Majority Leader Mitch McConnell or House Speaker John Boehner use the same level of severity expressed by Harry Reid to put a repeal bill on the desk of Obama for veto?  Simply, NO.

Why not? According to you it’s the “core tenet of American conservatism”.

If for nothing but to accept and follow the will of the people.  Despite the probability of an Obama veto, this was not a matter of option.  While the method might have been “symbolic”, due to the almost guaranteed veto, it would have stood as a promise fulfilled.

Yet you speak of “core tenets” and question our “trust” of Donald Trump?

We are not blind to the maneuverings of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and President Tom Donohue.  We are fully aware the repeal vote did not take place because the U.S. CoC demanded the retention of Obamacare.

Leader McConnell followed the legislative priority of Tom Donohue as opposed to the will of the people.   This was again exemplified with the passage of TPPA, another Republican construct which insured the Trans-Pacific Trade Deal could pass the Senate with 51 votes instead of 3/5ths.

We are not blind to the reality that when McConnell chooses to change the required voting threshold he is apt to do so.  Not coincidentally, the TPP trade deal is another legislative priority of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Yet you question the “trustworthiness” of Donald Trump’s conservatism?

Another bill, the Iran “agreement”, reportedly and conveniently not considered a “treaty”, again we are not blind.

Nor are we blind to Republican Bob Corker’s amendment (Corker/Cardin Amendment) changing ratification to a 67-vote-threshold for denial, as opposed to a customary 67 vote threshold for passage.  A profound difference.

Yet you question the “ideological conservative principle” of Donald Trump?

Perhaps your emphasis is on the wrong syllable.  Perhaps you should be questioning the “ideological conservative principle” of Mitch McConnell, or Bob Corker; both of whom apparently working to deny the will of the electorate within the party they are supposed to represent.

Of course, this would force you to face some uncomfortable empirical realities.  I digress.

Another example – How “conservative” is Lisa Murkowski?  A senator who can lose her Republican primary bid, yet run as a write-in candidate, and return to the Senate with full seniority and committee responsibilities?

Did Reince Preibus, or a republican member of leadership meet the returning Murkowski and demand a Pledge of Allegiance to the principles within the Republican party?

Yet you question the “allegiances” of Donald Trump?

Perhaps within your purity testing you need to forget minority leader Mitch McConnell working to re-elect Senator Thad Cochran, fundraising on his behalf in the spring/summer of 2014, even after Cochran lost the first Mississippi primary?

Perhaps you forget the NRSC spending money on racist attack ads?  Perhaps you forget the GOP paying Democrats to vote in the second primary to defeat Republican Chris McDaniel.  The “R” in NRSC is “Republican”.

Perhaps you forget.  We do not.

Yet you question the “principle” of those who have had enough, and are willing to support candidate Donald Trump.

You describe yourself as filled with anxiety because such supporters do not pass some qualified “principle” test?

Tell that to the majority of Republicans who supported Chris McDaniel and found their own party actively working against them.

Principle?  You claim “character matters” as part of this consideration.  Where is the “character” in the fact-based exhibitions outlined above?

Remember Virginia 2012, 2013?  When the conservative principle-driven electorate changed the method of candidate selection to a convention and removed the party stranglehold on their “chosen candidates”.  Remember that?  We do.

What did McConnell, the RNC and the GOP do in response with Ken Cuccinelli, they actively spited him and removed funding from his campaign.   To teach us a lesson?  Well it worked, we learned that lesson.

Representative David Brat was part of that lesson learned and answer delivered. Donald Trump is part of that lesson learned and answer forthcoming – yet you speak of “character”.

You speak of being concerned about Donald Trump’s hinted tax proposals.

Well, who cut the tax rates on lower margins by 50% thereby removing any tax liability from the bottom 20% wage earners? While simultaneously expanding the role of government dependency programs?

That would be the GOP (“Bush Tax Cuts”)

What? How dare you argue against tax cuts, you say.  The “Bush Tax Cuts” removed tax liability from the bottom 20 to 40% of income earners completely. Leaving the entirety of tax burden on the upper 60% wage earners. Currently, thanks to those cuts, 49% of tax filers pay ZERO federal income tax.

But long term it’s much worse. The “Bush Tax Cuts” were, in essence, created to stop the post 9/11/01 recession – and they contained a “sunset provision” which ended ten years later specifically because the tax cuts were unsustainable.

evil obama

The expiration of the lower margin tax cuts then became an argument in the election cycle of 2012. And as usual, the GOP, McConnell and Boehner were insufferably inept during this process.

The GOP (2002) removed tax liability from the lower income levels, and President Obama then (2009) lowered the income threshold for economic subsidy (welfare, food stamps, ebt, medicaid, etc) this was brutally predictable.

This lower revenue higher spending approach means – lower tax revenues and increased pressure on the top tax rates (wage earners)  with the increased demand for tax spending created within the welfare programs.

Republicans focus on the “spending” without ever admitting they, not the Democrats, lowered rates and set themselves up to be played with the increased need for social program spending, simultaneously.

Is this reality/outcome not ultimately a “tax the rich” program?

As a consequence what’s the difference between the Republicans and Democrats on taxes?   All of a sudden Republicans are arguing to “broaden the tax base”.

Meaning, reverse the tax cuts they created on the lower income filers?  This is a conservative position now?  A need to “tax the poor”?  Nice of the Republicans to insure the Democrats have an atomic sledgehammer to use against them.

This is a winning strategy?  This is the “conservatism” you are defending because you are worried about Donald Trump’s principles, character or trustworthiness.

Here’s a list of those modern conservative “small(er) government” principles:

• Did the GOP secure the border with control of the White House and Congress? NO.
• Did the GOP balance the budget with control of the White House and Congress? NO.

• Who gave us the TSA? The GOP
• Who gave us the Patriot Act? The GOP
• Who expanded Medicare to include prescription drug coverage? The GOP
• Who created the precursor of “Common Core” in “Race To the Top”? The GOP

• Who played the race card in Mississippi to re-elect Thad Cochran? The GOP
• Who paid Democrats to vote in the Mississippi primary? The GOP
• Who refused to support Ken Cuccinnelli in Virginia? The GOP

• Who supported Charlie Crist? The GOP
• Who supported Arlen Spector? The GOP
• Who supported Bob Bennett? The GOP

• Who worked against Marco Rubio? The GOP
• Who worked against Rand Paul? The GOP
• Who worked against Ted Cruz? The GOP
• Who worked against Mike Lee? The GOP
• Who worked against Jim DeMint? The GOP
• Who worked against Ronald Reagan? The GOP

• Who said “I think we are going to crush [the Tea Party] everywhere.”? The GOP (McConnell)

mcconnell-and-boehner

 

And, you wonder why we’re frustrated, desperate for a person who can actually articulate some kind of push-back? Mitch McConnell and John Boehner are what the GOP give us? SERIOUSLY?

Which leads to the next of your GOP talking points. Where you opine on Fox:

“Politics is a game where you don’t get everything you want”

Fair enough. But considering we of questionable judgment have simply been demanding common sense, ie. fiscal discipline, a BUDGET would be nice.

The last federal budget was passed in September of 2007, and EVERY FLIPPING INSUFFERABLE YEAR we have to go through the predictable fiasco of a Government Shutdown Standoff and/or a Debt Ceiling increase specifically because there is NO BUDGET!

That’s a strategy?

That’s the GOP strategy?  Essentially:  Lets plan for an annual battle against articulate Democrats and Presidential charm, using a creepy guy who cries and another old mumbling fool who dodders, knowing full well the MSM is on the side of the other guy to begin with?

THAT’S YOUR GOP STRATEGY?

Don’t tell me it’s not, because if it wasn’t there’d be something else being done – there isn’t.

And don’t think we don’t know the 2009 “stimulus” became embedded in the baseline of the federal spending, and absent of an actual budget it just gets spent and added to the deficit each year, every year.  Yet this is somehow smaller fiscal government?

….And you’re worried about what Donald Trump might do?

Seriously?