7:25 AM, Apr 23, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
The Republican National Committee has released a brutal memo on Senate majority leader Harry Reid, savaging him for repeatedly lying. The memo, under the name of press secretary Kirsten Kukowski, is titled "Nothing’s Too Unethical for Harry Reid."
"Harry Reid is having a bad month," the memo begins. "He was caught funneling campaign money to his relatives. His Senate Majority PAC was caught lying to voters. And he was caught hypocritically accepting money tied to people he calls 'un-American.' As he desperately clings to power, is there anything Harry Reid won’t do to promote his own self interests?"
As Jon Ralston outlines in Politico, FEC reports revealed Harry Reid funneled $31,000 to his granddaughter’s jewelry company for what a spokesperson claimed was holiday gifts of “jewelry” and “knick knacks.” (Thirty grand must buy a lot of knick knacks.)
Why does this matter? First, because when an initial payment of $17,000 was found, Senator Reid dismissed it, paid his campaign back, and insisted there was nothing to more to see. But there was: $14,000 more. So what else is he hiding?
Second, the FEC requires that gifts paid for by campaign funds be of “nominal value.” Either Reid is buying boatloads of “nominal” gifts or he clearly violated that standard. Or a third option: he’s just using campaign dollars to prop up his granddaughter’s business.
As Ralston reports, Reid has a long record of nepotism:
“…e lobbied a local city council to help land his son Josh a city attorney’s post. He has also been accused of helping another son—Ryan Elisabeth’s father, Rory—get legal clients, and of taking a special interest in Asian investors represented by Rory.”
Liar, Liar PAC on Fire
Harry Reid’s Senate Majority PAC doesn’t believe in facts. It’s running a barrage of attack ads that fact-checkers all agree are false. The Washington Post’s Glenn Kessler gave “four Pinocchios” to ads the PAC is running in Louisiana and in Arkansas. In other words, they’re complete lies.
About one Louisana ad, Kessler writes, “Television stations in Louisiana should be ashamed of falling for such an obvious gambit.” On the Arkansas ad, he says, “None of the allegations made about Cotton or his policies are factually correct.”
PolitiFact gave the Arkansas ad a “false” rating and the Louisiana ad a “mostly false” rating.
The Republican establishment needs the grassroots, and vice versa.Apr 28, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 31 • By JAY COST
Jeb Bush’s recent musings on a possible presidential run—and his comments on immigration, rankling many in the Republican grassroots—sparked a familiar clash. Jeb, the establishment’s preferred candidate, some said, could neutralize the fiery GOP base in 2016. Conservatives shot back that Jeb would depress conservative turnout, and his last name would play poorly with the general electorate.
Hosted by Michael Graham.4:35 PM, Apr 17, 2014 • By TWS PODCAST
THE WEEKLY STANDARD Podcast with editor William Kristol on the GOP's prospects in 2014 and 2016.
This podcast can be downloaded here. Subscribe to THE WEEKLY STANDARD's iTunes podcast feed here.
The Republicans’ struggle in Northern Virginia.Apr 21, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 30 • By MICHAEL WARREN
It’s hard to believe, but the rebirth of the Republican party in Virginia may be happening in the unlikeliest of places: the liberal bastion of Northern Virginia.
5:19 PM, Mar 28, 2014 • By MARK HEMINGWAY
In a surprising move, the influential Tea Party group FreedomWorks has withdrawn its endorsement of former Nebraska state treasurer Shane Osborn and is now endorsing former Bush administration official and Midland College president Ben Sasse in the GOP Senate primary. According to a statement from Freedomworks president Matt Kibbe:
Says we can't afford to be war weary.3:45 PM, Mar 27, 2014 • By STEPHEN F. HAYES
Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice accused Barack Obama of dramatically weakening the United States' position in the world, drawing a straight line between Obama’s ever-yielding foreign policy and the increasing troubles around the world.
3:02 PM, Mar 27, 2014 • By THOMAS DONNELLY
As Vladimir Putin reminds us that hard power, military power – not “soft” or “smart” power – is the ultima ratio in international affairs, who speaks for the Republican party?
Mar 31, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 28 • By FRED BARNES
Democrats are waiting. They’re waiting to see if Paul Broun is the Republican nominee for the Senate in Georgia. They’re waiting to see if challenger Matt Bevin and the Senate Conservatives Fund lacerate Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell sufficiently in Kentucky’s Republican primary to make him vulnerable in the general election against Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes. They’re waiting to see if Republicans nominate beatable Senate candidates in Alaska, North Carolina, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Colorado.
Republicans can’t afford to write off African-American voters. Mar 31, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 28 • By JAY COST
When pundits talk about the Republican party’s troubles with the “nonwhite” vote, they usually mean the Latino vote. There are reasons for this. In 2004 George W. Bush won an estimated 44 percent of the Latino vote; in 2012 Mitt Romney won just 27 percent. What’s more, the Latino share of the electorate rose from 8 percent to 10 percent in those eight years, magnifying the impact of the Democrats’ inroads.
8:04 AM, Mar 5, 2014 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
The House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on Wednesday to reduce the fine/“tax” for violating Obamacare’s individual mandate this year to $0. It will be interesting to see how Democrats in both the House and Senate react. President Obama has plainly violated the law—and the constitutional separation of powers—by unilaterally delaying the individual mandate for some people (those who liked their health plan but got a cancellation notice) and by unilaterally delaying the employer mandate.
Hosted by Michael Graham.4:45 PM, Feb 20, 2014 • By TWS PODCAST
The WEEKLY STANDARD podcast, with Sean Trende, a Senior Elections Analyst at RealClearPolitics on what the 2014 landscape looks like for Republican senate hopefuls.
Feb 24, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 23 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
On February 11, writing for the Washington Post, Republican lobbyist Ed Rogers ably summarized the latest “bad week for Obamacare.” The Congressional Budget Office concluded that Obamacare will cause “a decline in the number of full-time-equivalent workers of about 2.0 million in 2017, rising to about 2.5 million in 2024.” The CBO also found that Obamacare would—after all the spending and disruption and coercion—still leave about 31 million Americans uninsured a decade after implementation.
10:01 AM, Feb 11, 2014 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
I understand House Speaker John Boehner has just announced to his conference that he intends to bring the floor of the House a clean debt limit increase. Conservative members of the conference had argued for this course. Conservatives will vote against "Obama's debt increase," but expect it to pass with mostly Democratic votes, and some Republicans. This should take the prospect of government default or shutdown off the table, and with it one of the few Democratic talking points that might help save them this year.
11:13 AM, Feb 10, 2014 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
New York Democratic senator Chuck Schumer, an author of the Senate immigration bill, may have succeeded in helping Republicans kill his own bill.