Friday, September 30, 2011

More reactions to Florida's January 31st primary date

The announcement that Florida's presidential primary would be January 31, 2012 brought cheers from some, jeers from others, and profanities from certain blogger friends of mine:

<-- on the phone trying to convince @rsmccain not to send predator drones to FL. #SomeoneDoesNOTWantToSpendChristmasInIowaFri Sep 30 21:20:02 via web

Message for Seminole County Voters

Here's a message from Seminole County Supervisor of Elections Mike Ertel, regarding Florida's presidential primary:

Herman Cain: Happy Warrior

I heard someone refer to presidential candidate Herman Cain as a "happy warrior," and that reminded me of the poem by William Wordsworth, "Character of The Happy Warrior," that begins with the following lines:

Lawyered! Palin-defamer Joe McGinniss and Random House are in hot water

ICYMI, Joe McGinniss, the alleged journalist who moved in next door to Sarah Palin and then wrote an extremely negative book about her and her family is in a world of trouble. Last week, Andrew Breitbart's Big Government site broke the news that McGinnis had admitted in an email that his book was full of "tawdry gossip" and rumors without any "factual evidence."

Well, now Random House, the publisher of McGinniss' book, is joining McGinniss in the hot water. After it became clear that Random House was aware of the lack of factual support for the accusations in McGinniss' book, the Palins' attorneys sent a letter warning them to preserve evidence in preparation of a potential lawsuit:

Marco Rubio: America Should Stand Up For Religious Freedom in Iran

My Senator, Marco Rubio, is currently in Libya as part of the first Congressional delegation to visit since the Qadafi regime was deposed. Senator Rubio has been speaking out more in foreign policy topics recently and yesterday, National Review posted his op-ed on the subject of religious and political oppression in Iran. 

Rubio highlights the plight of a Christian pastor named Yousef Nardarkhani, who is facing execution for abandoning Islam and refusing to recant his Christian faith:

Scott Plakon: "Government Creates a Business Headwind" [VIDEO]

Here's State Representative Scott Plakon discussing the oppressive effect of government regulations on small businesses:

YouTube | TheFCTA | Government Creates a Business Headwind

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Shameless plug: Some media appearances regarding the Florida Straw Poll

Here's a few media appearances I did over the past week regarding CPAC Florida, the Presidency 5 debate and straw poll, and reaction:

American Spectator | Herman Cain's Magic Moment (quoted in article about Scott Plakon's endorsement of Herman Cain the day before the straw poll)

Flashpoint | 09.25.11 | Guests: Justin Sayfie, Sarah Rumpf, Bill Mick (click link to view video; site does not allow embedding their videos)

YouTube | Sarah Rumpf on Fox 35 Orlando discussing Cain's Florida Straw Poll Win

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I Support Sharon Day and Paul Senft

I've publicly said that I want Florida to have an early presidential primary date. I understand why people in Iowa and New Hampshire like their early primaries, but I don't think it's in the best interest of the country (e.g., Iowa's disproportionate power in the presidential primaries is a large part of the reason why we have the wasteful and destructive ethanol subsidies).

As a Republican, I want Florida to have a prominent role in picking our nominee. We are a large, diverse state with complicated issues, so any candidate who can succeed here has proven the ability to succeed on a national scale.

That being said, news has broken today that the committee in charge of setting Florida's primary date is planning on scheduling it for January 31, 2012. Earlier tonight, Republican Party of Florida's National Committeeman Paul Senft sent out an email criticizing this date and laying out his reasons for opposing it. After reading the email, I agree with Senft that we should wait until early March.

I've cut and pasted the email below the jump. Read, and judge for yourself:

L'Shana Tovah, Y'all!

Tonight at sundown marked the beginning of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. I saw this video on Facebook and it was just too good not to share:

YouTube | Rosh Hashanah Rock Anthem

I love seeing joyful expressions of faith like this. The young men in this video should be proud of themselves for being excellent role models.

The HurriCAIN continues...

It looks like that Zogby poll might not have been a fluke:  
Fox News | Fox News Poll: GOP Race Top Tier Now Romney, Perry, and Cain
Three September debates have shaken-up the race for the Republican presidential nomination. Herman Cain has jumped into the top tier. Rick Perry’s stumbled. Mitt Romney's holding steady.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Adam Hasner's CPAC Florida Speech

CPAC is definitely comfortable turf for Florida Senate candidate Adam Hasner. Here's the video of his can tell he's having a great time:

YouTube | CPACNews | Adam Hasner at CPAC Florida

Join #TeamHasner:

Adam Hasner website
Adam Hasner on Facebook
Twitter: @AdamHasner

White House freaks out over a 30 second car commercial

"Chris," the Ford truck owner who appears in the ad is a real person, and just spoke his mind on the day that they filmed that ad.

Well, according to a link I found at RedState, Ford has pulled the ad after pressure from the White House:

Should have seen it coming [VIDEO]

Herman Cain's straw poll win at Presidency 5 sent shockwaves through the political world. For those of us who were lucky enough to be in Orlando last week, we really should have seen it coming.

The evidence...

2 + 2 about Adam Hasner's CPACFL straw poll win

Herman Cain wasn't the only big winner last week; Florida Senate candidate Adam Hasner also won the CPAC Florida straw poll, with 34% of the vote in a four-way race.

This post is titled "2 + 2" because I've got two important points about this victory and two great video interviews to share with you:

Monday, September 26, 2011

BREAKING: Herman Cain leads new Zogby poll!

 The "Hurri-CAIN" continues...
Rick Perry has tumbled by more than 20 percentage points over the past month among Republican presidential primary voters and is now second to Herman Cain, who leads the field with 28%. 

Phone call with Herman Cain

After Herman Cain won the Presidency 5 straw poll, I found State Representative Scott Plakon and his wife Susie in the convention center lobby and we called one of the Cain staffers who had set up the meeting where Plakon had endorsed Cain.

A very happy Team Cain was already on their way to the airport, but Herman Cain had time to briefly chat with us on the phone about how pleased he was with the straw poll results and how grateful he was for Plakon's support. They were nice enough to let me record the call, and I'm happy to share it with you here:

A small orange piece of the P5 straw poll puzzle

It is extremely rare to win a straw poll or election for just one reason, and Charlie Crist is not why Herman Cain won the Presidency 5 straw poll, but he was one factor out of many that contributed to the tidal shift this week from Rick Perry to Cain.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

HERMAN CAIN WINS #FloridaP5 straw poll!

"A hurri-CAIN has hit Florida!"
- State Representative Scott Plakon

Scott Plakon endorses Herman Cain [VIDEO]

I was proud to be a witness to State Representative Scott Plakon's endorsement of Herman Cain last night. Representative Plakon is one of my favorite legislators, and it has been great to watch him become a strong, conservative leader in the Florida House. He and his wife Susie and their family are also some of the nicest people you could ever meet, and I am blessed to be able to call them friends.

The impact of this endorsement should not be underestimated. Scott Plakon may not be well known (yet) outside the state of Florida, but he is extremely well-liked here and very active in conservative political causes around the state. Americans for Prosperity's Florida Chapter named him their 2011 State Representative of the Year, and he has been a leader in opposing ObamaCare, sponsoring the Florida Health Care Freedom Act. Plakon is a solid fiscal and social conservative and has owned and operated several successful businesses; he is the exact type of state leader Republican presidential candidates should want on their team.

[more commentary and video after the jump]

Some additional notes on the booing...

After the presidential debate on Thursday night, I wrote a late night post about what I had personally witnessed regarding a few individuals who booed after a gay soldier's question to the candidates. The post got a lot of very passionate responses and has more comments than any other post on this blog.

I received criticism from those who felt I didn't condemn the booing strongly enough and from those who did not believe my depiction of what happened. As to the first issue, my apologies. As I mentioned at the beginning of the post, it was very late at night and my goal was to just write and publish my observations about the booing at the debate, not take the time to discuss broader issues.

So let me be clear: I absolutely, positively do not support booing a soldier for asking an honest question, period. I absolutely, positively do not support booing a gay man for asking an honest question, period. I strongly believe that the few individuals who booed were awful, classless, jerks. They were an embarrassment to my state, my Republican party, and all the wonderful people who worked so hard to plan the Presidency 5 events this week, and they should be ashamed of themselves.

And, for the record, I stated my opinion about DADT back in June 2010:

Friday, September 23, 2011

BREAKING: State Rep Scott Plakon is endorsing Herman Cain for President!

AFP State Representative of the Year Scott Plakon has decided to endorse Herman Cain for the Republican nomination for President!

I was lucky enough to be in the room as the two of them discussed being business owners and the presidential race. Both Cain and Plakon are committed to retiring Barack Obama and bringing new conservative leadership to Washington. 

This is yet another example of how CPAC Florida & Presidency 5 are shaping the narrative for Florida Republican politics!

I have a short video I'll post later. Stay tuned!

BOOM! @AdamHasner wins #CPACFL straw poll

I'll post more when I get the rest of the details, but I have confirmed that Adam Hasner has won the CPAC Florida straw poll by a convincing 34% to LeMieux's McCalister's 24%. Congrats to #TeamHasner!

UPDATE: My apologies, in the excitement I made an error in the original post about who came in second in the CPAC straw poll. Correction above.

The Truth About the Booing at the Debate

It's after 3:00 am and I have to get up early for another fun-packed day tomorrow (CPAC FLORIDA!) but I want to put this on the record now about an incident that happened at tonight's Republican debate. It's important that the truth is shared, because I have already seen liberal bloggers and some people on Twitter completely distorting what happened.

The debate included video questions that were submitted on YouTube, and one came from a soldier serving in Iraq who is gay and asked about the candidates' opinions on don't ask don't tell. There was audible booing after his question...however, please note that it was not the crowd booing. It was only one or two people.

I was at the debate, in the audience on the right hand side about halfway back (here's my tweet of the video screen that was right in front of us). The person who booed was just a few rows in front of us. The booing got an immediate and angry reaction from nearly everyone sitting around him, who hissed and shushed at him. Lots of loud gasps, "Shhhh!" "No!" "Shut up, you idiot!" etc.

My tweet right after it happened:

FTR that was ONLY 1 or 2 people who booed at the gay soldier's question & LOTS of people shushed at him. #FloridaP5 #gopdebate #sayfieFri Sep 23 02:17:55 via UberSocial for BlackBerry

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Tonight's Debate: What I Want To See

I'm heading down to the Orange County Convention Center for all the Presidency 5/CPAC Florida excitement, and definitely looking forward to tonight's debate. 

I'm a voting delegate for Presidency 5, and for the record, my mind is not made up yet who is getting my vote in Saturday's straw poll. I've been getting lots of mail and robocalls and email messages from most of the candidates but tonight's debate is going to be key in my decision. I know I'm not alone in not feeling completely tied to a candidate yet.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Former RPOF Chair Carole Jean Jordan Endorses Adam Hasner for Senate

September 21, 2011
Contact: Douglass Mayer

Carole Jean Jordan Endorses Adam Hasner For U.S. Senate 
Boca Raton, FL - Today the Adam Hasner for U.S. Senate campaign announced the endorsement of former Republican Party of Florida Chairman and longtime Republican activist Carole Jean Jordan.  
"I am extremely proud to announce my endorsement of Adam Hasner for United States Senate. He is the only candidate in this race Floridians can trust to faithfully represent their core values on a daily basis," said Carole Jean Jordan. "While others in this race once sought to undermine the defining principles of our Party for personal gain, Adam has always been loyal and steadfast in defending and promoting our bedrock values. I have no doubt that when elected to the U.S. Senate, he will continue his dedicated fight and be a strong voice against the policies of President Obama and Senator Nelson which have weakened our state and our country." 

Have a Coke Float with Jeff Atwater

Continuing his tradition of having ice cream sundae parties at Republican events, CFO Jeff Atwater is hosting a "Coke and a Float Party" to wrap up Presidency 5 (which starts tomorrow! Get excited!) on Saturday, September 24, from 8:30 pm to 10:30 pm. Details below:

(Click image to enlarge)
Find this and lots of other great events at the "Events" tab at the top right of this page.

Reality check on LeMieux's "conservative" voting record

As the Republican primary battle to be Florida's next Senator has developed over the past few months, one claim that I have seen over and over is that George LeMieux had a "conservative" voting record during his short tenure as a Senator. 

I have heard many Republicans express hesitation because of LeMieux's long association with former Governor and former Republican (and current Morgan & Morgan spokesman) Charlie Crist, but then cite his allegedly conservative voting record as if that might be able to cancel out the rest of it. Well, I know I'm not alone in thinking that LeMieux's years of being Crist's "maestro" aren't so easily dismissed (not to mention the ongoing debacle of L'Affaire de Greer), but even if you don't agree with me on that, LeMieux's voting record isn't really as conservative as he likes to claim, and here's why:

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Adam Hasner Townhall column on Israel

Florida Senate candidate Adam Hasner has written a powerful op-ed for Townhall on the topic of Israel, and how the Obama administration has failed our ally:
Townhall | Adam Hasner | A Time to Act: Defending Israel and Doing What is Just

Florida: Kind of a Big Deal

You stay classy, Orlando!
Ron Burgundy liked to say that he was "kind of a big deal," but the reality is that as the 2012 election cycle heats up, it's Florida that really is a big deal.

Last week, CNN and the Tea Party Express hosted a Republican presidential debate in Tampa, and now this week will see both CPAC Florida and the Presidency 5 debate and straw poll.

Governor Rick Scott was interviewed on Fox & Friends yesterday, and remarked that Ronald Reagan, George Bush, and Bob Dole all won Florida's straw poll and then went on to win the Republican presidential nomination, so he believes that whoever wins the Presidency 5 straw poll will be the 2012 Republican nominee:

Monday, September 19, 2011

I'm now posting at Truth About Bills

Back in April, I linked to Truth About Bills in a post titled "Stuff You Should Be Reading." TAB is a great conservative site founded by  Andrew Staroska and Mike Simpkins, and they have have been adding additional authors in the past few months, including yours truly.

I just cross-posted my discussion and video from Newt Gingrich's speech at the Seminole County Reagan Day Dinner, and will continue to post content at TAB from time to time. They have a lot of great content that I encourage you to check out, especially their detailed discussion of pending Congressional bills.

Link to my posts at Truth About Bills
Truth About Bills home page

Words Have Meaning: LeMieux's Palestinian Faux Pas

Here's your #facepalm moment of the day: George LeMieux, the once-and-would-be-future-Senator, sent an email to his supporters in which he referred to "Palestine," which is not a recognized country.

The timing is especially troublesome, coming the week of a crucial United Nations vote on the very subject of an independent Palestinian state. Supporters of Israel have stood strong and refused to accept a Palestinian state as long as they continue to engage in terrorism and deny Israel's right to exist. Referring to "Palestine," as if it were already a country with legal status, is, at best, imprudent.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Allen West's Weekly Video Address

Congressman Allen West has started releasing weekly video addresses. Here's the latest edition, in which West critiques Obama's so-called "jobs" bill and discusses a variety of topics including the economy, the NLRB vs. Boeing dispute, the upcoming vote at the United Nations regarding Palestine, and his support for Israel:

YouTube | AllenWestFL | West's Weekly Video Address 9/16/2011

You can help Allen West's reelection campaign for only the cost of a postage stamp, by signing a petition to put West on the ballot (link here). Until redistricting is complete, a registered voter anywhere in Florida can sign a petition for a Congressional or state legislative candidate.

Friday, September 16, 2011

More about that awesome Ford ad

Last week, I posted a great Ford commercial in which a customer named "Chris" states that one of the reason that he bought a Ford truck was because the company was "standing on their own" instead of taking government bailouts like GM and Chrysler.

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air has an excellent write-up about the commercial, including a followup video from Chris:

Adam Hasner on Fox & Friends Monday

Fox and Friends will be broadcasting live from The Villages, Florida, on Monday, September 19, 2011 in celebration of the 15th anniversary of the Fox News Channel, and Florida Senate candidate Adam Hasner will be one of their special guests.

Tune in to the Fox News Channel at 7:30 a.m. next Monday to see Hasner participate in a panel discussion on some of the challenges currently facing our country.

Gotta Love Gingrich

There are two things that Newt Gingrich does extremely well: tell a good story, and give a direct answer to a question. I got to see him do both of those things on Wednesday evening in Lake Mary as the keynote speaker at the Seminole County Reagan Day Dinner, sponsored by the Ronald Reagan Republican Assemblies of Florida, Inc.

Before the dinner, Newt and Calista Gingrich took photos with everyone who was in attendance. State Representative Scott Plakon was nice enough to invite me and two other members of the Orange County Young Republicans to join his family at his table. Representative Plakon's very talented daughter Jeanne sang the national anthem and several other songs during the evening's program. (Check out this video of Jeanne singing at the 2009 Opening Session of the Florida House of Representatives.)

Gingrich's speech was mostly anecdotes about Ronald Reagan (ahem, it was a "Reagan Day Dinner," after all), some of Gingrich's own memories with the former President, but also many other great stories from throughout Reagan's life. Some highlights:

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Adam Hasner on Running for the Senate

Florida Senate candidate Adam Hasner released another "Conversation with Adam Hasner" video today. This latest video discusses his decision to run for U.S. Senate and why he believes "America is at a critical crossroads and in desperate need of conservative reinforcements:"

YouTube | adamhasner | Adam Hasner On Running For The Senate

To learn more about Adam Hasner:

Adam Hasner website
Adam Hasner on Facebook
Twitter: @AdamHasner

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

CPAC FL - All The Cool Kids Are Doing It

Wow. Oh wow.

The American Conservative Union released the agenda for CPAC Florida today, and it is definitely going to be a don't-miss event.

Check it out here:

I am so excited about having CPAC come to my hometown. Can't wait to see all of you here in Orlando, and this is going to be a truly memorable week, with Presidency 5, the FoxNews debate, and now this epic-levels-of-awesomeness CPAC FL schedule.

More information about the speakers, programs, and registration after the jump:

Monday, September 12, 2011

Getting ready for the CNN/Tea Party Express Debate

I'm at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa, Florida and ran into Americans for Prosperity's Statewide Director for Florida, Slade O'Brien (pictured).

There is a huge crowd here, both waiting to get into the debate and at the Tea Party Express Dinner & Debate Watch Party.

You can follow my comments during the debate on Twitter @rumpfshaker ( and I'll post blog updates when I can.

I'll also be giving some live post-debate commentary with Fox 35 Orlando (@myfoxorlando) at 10 pm so make sure to watch!

- Sarah

Is George LeMieux working with Guetzloe?

Why would George LeMieux willingly work with Doug Guetzloe, the man who spent last year engaged in a direct assault on both the Republican party and many tea party movement organizations and activists around the state (see my post from last month here with lots of links about Guetzloe)?

Or - and maybe this is worse - is LeMieux really that ignorant about the tea party? That doesn't seem that farfetched, considering the swirling gossip about LeMieux's contempt for grassroots conservatives. Or is he so desperate for positive press as L'affaire de Greer grinds on, that he'll take it from any source, no matter how low he has to stoop?

Here's what we know so far:

Town Hall with Newt Gingrich on Wednesday in Orlando

The East Side Tea Party and Central Florida Tea Party Council are hosting a Town Hall Event with Newt Gingrich on Wednesday. Here's all the info:

Morning Coffee Reading for September 12, 2011

Here's your morning coffee reading for today:
  • L'affaire de Greer continues to burn, and it hasn't escaped the notice of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. In a recent post, the DSCC lands some devastating blows on George LeMieux, including link after link after link to news articles showing the years of connections between LeMieux, former Governor (and former Republican) Charlie Crist, and former RPOF Chairman Jim Greer:
DSCC | Adam Hasner Says You Broke The Law. What Say You, George LeMieux? --& (Crickets)
  • The New York special election to fill Anthony Weiner's Congressional seat is shaping up to be more of a challenge than the Democrats expected:
Michelle Malkin | Doug Powers | Race to Replace Anthony Weiner Update: Poll Finds Republican Leading by 6 Points
RedState | PPP (D) Poll: Turner (R)/Weprin (D) 47/41 in NY-09

Sunday, September 11, 2011

More thoughts on the day

I've been spending the day like many of you probably have - quietly reading articles and blog posts online and watching the news coverage. As I posted earlier this morning, it seems surreal that it's been a decade since that awful day that changed America forever.

I thought I'd share with you some of what I've been reading and watching today:

Never Forget

It has been ten years since September 11, 2001, but it often seems like it just happened yesterday.

It is a sad reality that every modern American generation has been united by its own horrific tragedy. For our grandparents, it was Pearl Harbor. For our parents, JFK's assassination in Dallas. And September 11th will forever define my generation. These are the "I will always remember where I was when I heard" moments that draw a brutal demarcation across our history: the Before and the After. We can rebuild, we can find our own ways to cope and heal, but life is never, ever the same.

In 2001, I was in law school at the University of Florida, engaged in the mundane task of getting ready for class, when my roommate called out that a plane had hit the World Trade Center. How could this be? What had happened to the pilot that the plane couldn't avoid such a tall building? What a terrible accident...

Then the second plane hit.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

I think the next car I buy will be a Ford

An amazing story of courage from September 11th

September 11th, 2001 will go down in history as a day of tragedy, but also a day of heroism. Here is a story of one of those heroes:
Washington Post | F-16 pilot was ready to give her life on Sept. 11 
Late in the morning of the Tuesday that changed everything, Lt. Heather “Lucky” Penney was on a runway at Andrews Air Force Base and ready to fly. She had her hand on the throttle of an F-16 and she had her orders: Bring down United Airlines Flight 93. The day’s fourth hijacked airliner seemed to be hurtling toward Washington. Penney, one of the first two combat pilots in the air that morning, was told to stop it. 
The one thing she didn’t have as she roared into the crystalline sky was live ammunition. Or missiles. Or anything at all to throw at a hostile aircraft. 
Except her own plane. So that was the plan...
[Click here to read the rest of the article]

Memorial Service for David Bitner

RPOF sent out an email announcement regarding the scheduling of memorial services for our Chairman, David Bitner, who lost his battle with ALS this week.

Additional memorial services will also be held at a later date in Port Charlotte.

WHAT:           Celebration of Life memorial services 
WHEN:           Thursday 3:00 PM, Sept. 15, 2011 
WHERE:        WC Dover Farms, 534 Dover Road, Havana, FL 32333
Please remember to keep David's wife Wendy, and the entire Bitner family in your thoughts and prayers.

Senator Rubio's reflections on September 11th

Friday, September 9, 2011

Obama has a campaign plan. Ted Cruz has a JOBS plan.

Texas Senate candidate Ted Cruz introduced his twelve-step "Jobs and Growth Agenda" earlier this week, winning praise from conservative stalwarts like Senator Jim DeMint.

Today, the day after President Zero's campaign stunt alleged jobs speech, the Cruz campaign has released a video in response. Quite a contrast, hmmm?

More information available at the Ted Cruz for Senate website.

Reactions to Obama's Jobs Speech

Last night, President Zero gave a campaign speech jobs speech. I've collected the reactions of several Republicans to our Teleprompter-Reader-in-Chief ordering Congress to "pass this bill right away!" 

Read and watch the videos, after the jump:

AIPAC Orlando Reception and Policy Briefing

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is hosting a reception and policy briefing on September 19, 2011 here in Central Florida.

The program is titled “Showdown at the United Nations: Diplomacy or Delegitimization?” and will feature Dr. Tal Becker, the lead negotiator during the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations under the Annapolis Peace Process. Dr. Becker also served as a Senior Policy Advisor to Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs from 2006-2009, and his recent book, Terrorism at the State: Rethinking the Rules for State Responsibility, received the 2007 Guggenheim Prize for Best International Law Book. Dr. Becker's discussion will focus on the ramifications that the Palestinians’ efforts to unilaterally declare a state at the United Nations will have for Israel and for the greater Middle East. Their first real push in the U.N. Security Council is scheduled to take place the very same week as this event.

Event flyer with RSVP instructions after the jump:

Morning Coffee Reading for September 9, 2011

Here's your morning coffee reading for today:
  • Yesterday was a sad day for Florida Republicans, as RPOF Chairman David Bitner died after a valiant battle with ALS. Saint Petersblog has done an excellent job collecting messages from leaders around the state in reaction to Bitner's passing:
Saint Petersblog | Rest in peace, Mr. Chairman: RPOF's Dave Bitner has died after battle with ALS
Ted Cruz | Blog | Sen. DeMint, Others Weigh in on Jobs and Growth Agenda
  • The myth that moderates are more "electable" is debunked in this American Thinker article, with a discussion of the 1964 Goldwater-Johnson race, the 1980 Reagan-Carter race, and several recent Senate races:
The Road to Hell is Paved with 'Electable' Candidates

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Win a Free Dinner! Egobamania Contest!

State Representative Scott Plakon is having a very funny contest on his Facebook page: whoever guess the number of times that President Obama uses the words "I," "me," and "my" in his speech tonight will get free dinner for two with Plakon and his wife:

Win Free Dinner for 2! How many times will POTUS use "I", "Me" or "My" in Thurs speech? #sayfie #tcot Pls RTThu Sep 08 03:50:34 via HootSuite

Enter your guess here. You have until 7 pm Eastern time!

And for the record, Plakon isn't the only one to notice our Teleprompter-Reader-in-Chief's tendency to focus speeches on himself. Check out this video (hat tip: Jason Hoyt):

YouTube | AforP | You Probably Think This Speech is About You

Last Night's Debate at the Reagan Library

Here we go again. The Republican presidential candidates squared off last night at the Reagan Library, so once again, I did an analysis of the trending topics on Twitter immediately after the debate ended. (Don't miss my previous posts on the New Hampshire debate and Ames debate.)

The only debate-related topic that was trending nationwide was "Did Ron Paul." Yes, you read that correctly. Unfortunately for Paul, the vast majority of the tweets for that topic were along the lines of "Did Ron Paul really just say that crazy thing?" Many of these tweets centered on Paul's comments that a border fence could also be used to keep Americans in, and that we should save money by taking away the air conditioning units from our troops in Afghanistan. Huh?

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Scott Plakon named AFP Florida's Legislator of the Year

Americans for Prosperity's Florida chapter released their "Legislative Scorecard" today, grading Florida's State Representatives and Senators on their voting records during the 2011 session.

The press release included this statement from State Director Slade O'Brien:
The legislative scorecard allows our 86,000 members to see how their elected officials voted on issues affecting individual liberty and economic prosperity. The 2011 legislative session was one of the most business-friendly in years, with successful reform measures addressing unsustainable pensions and Medicaid, health care freedom, and burdensome regulations stifling job growth. These are the issues that will move our state forward and guarantee continued economic growth for Floridians.
Americans for Prosperity-Florida applauds all 79 Legislators - six Senators and 73 Representatives - that received A+ scores for advocating for less government, less taxes, and decreasing burdensome regulations on businesses. These are critical policies our lawmakers must support in order to ensure Florida can compete on the national and international level. The elected officials that received scores of D and F show hostility towards the free market and protecting the individual liberties on which our country was founded.
AFP also awarded State Representative Scott Plakon its "Legislator of the Year" award, noting that he had "repeatedly proven to be a principled leader set on protecting liberty with his sponsorship of vital legislation including the Health Care Freedom amendment." State Senator Joe Negron was chosen from the Senate.

View AFP Florida's Legislative Scorecard here.

November elections for Altamonte Springs & Lake Mary

Seminole County Supervisor of Elections Michael Ertel sent out an email today with information about the upcoming municipal elections in Altamonte Springs and Lake Mary (Oviedo and Longwood were originally scheduled to have elections as well, but the incumbent city commissioners were reelected without opposition):
  • Election day will be November 8th for both Altamonte Springs and Lake Mary.
  • If you just moved to Altamonte Springs or Lake Mary, October 11, 2011 is the last day you can register to vote and participate in this year's city elections.
  • Altamonte Springs residents can vote at the City Hall building at 225 Newburyport Avenue.
  • Lake Mary residents can vote at the City Hall building at 100 North Country Club Road.
  • Early voting will be 10 am to 6 pm on Friday, November 4, noon to 4 pm on Saturday, November 5, and noon to 4 pm on Sunday, November 6 at the Seminole County Supervisor of Elections office at 1500 East Airport Blvd., Sanford, FL 32773.
  • You can get an absentee ballot by calling 407-585-VOTE (8683) or at

Dear Republican candidates, please plagiarize from Ted Cruz

Texas Senate candidate Ted Cruz had a conference call for bloggers earlier today, to discuss a new "Growth and Jobs Agenda" plan he published today at National Review Online and answer our questions.

The plan (also available at has twelve steps.  Contrasting himself with the Obama administration, Cruz stated that he believes that "government doesn't create jobs, but it can kill jobs," characterized the first six steps of his plan as defensive against the President's "war on jobs," and the last six as proactive, designed to spur growth and stimulate job creation in the private sector. 

Here's the twelve steps in a nutshell, but make sure to read the full article:

Adam Putnam recalls spending 9/11 with President Bush

On the morning of September 11, 2001, President George W. Bush was visiting an elementary school in Sarasota, Florida. Accompanying the President was then-Congressman Adam Putnam, now Florida's Commissioner of Agriculture. 

Here's an interview the St. Petersburg Times did with Putnam about what he remembers from that terrible day:
St. Petersburg Times | During Sept. 11th attacks, then-Rep. Adam Putnam was with President George W. Bush 
..."It's hard to believe it's been 10 years," said former U.S. Rep Adam Putnam, now Florida's agriculture commissioner, who was at the school. 
Putnam, a Bartow Republican the president nicknamed "Red," and the others were preparing for a feel-good event: a visit with students that would highlight the school's improvement. 
The call Bush took was startling, but no one knew what was really going on. Officials first thought a small propeller plane had hit one of the World Trade Center towers. 
Bush continued with the program, reading along as second-graders recited The Pet Goat, a story in a workbook. Then Card walked over and whispered in his ear, "A second plane hit the second tower. America is under attack."

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

What "L'affaire de Greer" is really about

I've decided to start referring to the whole Jim Greer controversy as "L'affaire de Greer," in homage to "l'affaire du collier," also known as "The Affair of the Necklace," which involved Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette in the lead up to the French Revolution. Both scandals involve political intrigue, extravagant spending, public outrage, and the betrayal of former allies.

Watergate was much more than a burglary ("It's not the crime, it's the coverup"), and likewise, l'affaire de Greer is about so much more than just the excessive spending. While I'll concede the point to Greer that you cannot give a big-time donor some cheese and crackers and then ask them for a five-digit check, the spending was absolutely ridiculous and weakened the party by undermining donors' trust and depleting the coffers as we approached a crucial election. The frequent use of private planes and limo services was especially inexcusable.

But, frankly, overspending on a company card is not a unique problem. Most people's spending habits are different when they are spending their own money versus being able to write off a meal or travel to their employer. Greer took it to an extreme, but what sets this scandal apart, and what I believe deserves the most attention and investigation, is the usurpation of RPOF resources and power to interfere in primaries - most egregiously, the 2010 Senate race. 

Monday, September 5, 2011

Morning Coffee Reading for September 5, 2011

Here's your morning coffee reading for today:
Red County | Dr. Richard Swier | The Score Cards are In: Senator Marco Rubio 93% and Senator Bill Nelson 10%
St. Petersburg Times | The Buzz | Winner and Loser of the Week in Fla politics

Thank you @DaveBitner for your service to the GOP- your courage to serve the cause while battling an illness is an inspiration to us all.Wed Aug 31 21:17:51 via Echofon

Sunday, September 4, 2011

9-11 Memorial Events in Central Florida

The 10th anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks is a week from today.

Bess Auer, who is the editor of the excellent Central Florida Top 5 blog, has compiled a list of events in the Central Florida area. Check it out here:

Central Florida Top 5 | 9-11: Central Florida Remembers

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Ed Schultz Calls Rubio "Stupid" - Seriously?!

Just in case there was any doubt that liberal and conservative brains are different, here comes MSNBC's Ed Schultz to remind you.

As you may have heard, my Senator, Marco Rubio, gave an incredibly moving speech at the Reagan Library about a week and a half ago. (If you haven't seen it yet, click here.) Normal people and journalists watched that speech and felt that it was an excellent followup to his maiden speech on the Senate Floor, and the speculation about Rubio being the GOP's Vice Presidential nominee became nearly deafening.

Well, Ed Schultz watched the same speech that you and I did, but had a much different reaction. Here's a two-part YouTube video where Schultz calls Rubio "stupid," "offensive," and "psycho talk", among other pleasantries:

[Video and discussion after the jump]

Friday, September 2, 2011

If I were any more transparent, I'd be invisible

Blogging is a wonderful but often weird and wacky hobby. The ability to contribute my ideas and opinions to the political discussion, not to mention the chance to potentially shape that discussion, is a privilege, and not one that I take lightly. Lately, there has been a lot of debate about the proper role for political bloggers and the controversial influence of advertising money and other conflicts of interest, so I thought I would share a few thoughts.

President Zero

The new jobs report just came out this morning, and...ouch.

Unemployment remained stagnant at 9.1%, which means that the economy gained zero jobs in August. CNBC noted that this was the first time since World War II that the economy had created net zero jobs.

Drudge Report headline this morning

Obama's problems with Jewish voters

Here's a video from the Miami Herald a few weeks ago interviewing South Florida Jewish residents about whether they would vote for Obama in 2012:

Note that many of those who supported Obama in 2008 have lost faith in him; more specifically, they have lost faith in his administration's support for Israel. South Florida has the third highest concentration of Jews in the country, and it's clear that Middle East foreign policy issues are a priority for this group of voters.

For more on this topic:

Sunshine State Sarah | Excellent video explanation of why Israel cannot withdraw to its 1967 borders
Sunshine State Sarah | A historical perspective on why Obama is wrong about Israel
Sunshine State Sarah | Krauthammer on Israel, and a history lesson

Morning Coffee Reading for September 2, 2011

Here's your morning coffee reading for today:
  • The Jim Greer situation continues to slog on through the courts and the media, causing nightmares for a number of Florida politicians, including Florida Senate candidate George LeMieux:
Miami Herald | Jim Greer TV Tell-all is bad news for George LeMieux 
And that's bad news for LeMieux as he runs in a crowded Republican primary where he's trying to shake the legacy of calling himself and acting like a "Charlie Crist Republican." Judging by the first night's installment, the TV piece won't have much new in it. But it raises the issue of Greer and it specifically highlighted LeMieux, thereby making the old story news again. And campaigns are all about examining a candidate's past to help determine his future. 
LeMieux has tried to distance himself from his old boss (and Greer) by saying that Crist drifted left after he left the governor's office as chief of staff. But Greer told us a while back that he inked a little-known $10,000 monthly Republican Party of Florida contract — ultimately worth $150,000 — to pay LeMieux to continue giving Crist advice through a company called MTC Strategies. 
Greer owes a measure of his chairmanship to LeMieux, who was Crist's top campaign and gubernatorial advisor early on and therefore rounded up the votes on the Republican Executive Committee of RPOF to help make Greer chairman.

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