Cap and trade to pass in a lame-duck session?

This sounds typical, knowing what we know about scared politicians who refuse to face their constituents:

Mike Allen’s POLITICO Playbook reports: Phil Schiliro, the White House congressional liaison, has told the Senate to aim to take up an energy bill the week of July 12, after the July 4 break (and after the scheduled final passage of Wall Street reform). Kagan confirmation will follow, ahead of the summer break, scheduled to begin Aug. 9. The plan is to conference the new Senate bill with the already-passed House bill IN A LAME-DUCK SESSION AFTER THE ELECTION, so House members don’t have to take another tough vote ahead of midterms.

Hey, Tom Ganley! Add item number seven to your to-do list: repeatedly challenge Betty Sutton to pledge in writing that if you defeat her, she will not pass a cap and trade bill in a lame-duck session. If she says no or ignores you, hammer her in TV ads.

NPR battleground survey

Good news, Democrats! Maybe that anti-incumbent frenzy isn’t as bad as you’ve heard. National Public Radio conducted a poll in 70 U.S. House Districts they identified as battlegrounds (60 Democrats and 10 Republicans). The very reliable survey of likely voters yielded the following results:

Do you approve or disapprove of the way [your incumbent House representative] is handling [his or her] job as a member of the U.S. Congress? (Skipped if open seat)
Margin of error: +/- 3.5 percentage points

NPR poll incumbents
Rejoice, Betty Sutton! Cheer up, John Boccieri! Smile, Zack Space! Whistle a happy tune, Charlie Wilson! Dance a happy jig, Mary Jo Kilroy! Hoist a tall frosty one, Steve Driehaus! Do … whatever it is you do, Marcy Kaptur! It’s good to be a Democrat Representative in 2010, baby.
I wonder what else those fine progressive folks at NPR unearthed?

Betty Sutton, Underpants Gnome (Updated)

Great news! President Obama wants another $50 billion bailout, this one for public sector unions.

President Obama is pressing Congress to approve emergency aid money to support economic recovery and help avoid widespread layoffs of public workers, the Washington Post reported Saturday.
Congressional leaders received a letter from the president asking for almost $50 billion for distribution to state and local governments, saying that increased spending is “urgent and unavoidable,” the Post reported. The money would protect the jobs of teachers, police and firefighters.
“Because the urgency is high — many school districts, cities and states are already being forced to make these layoffs,” Obama wrote, “these provisions must be passed as quickly as possible.”
Obama’s plea comes despite last year’s $787 billion economic stimulus package, which worked to stabilize the failing economy [Riiiiiight. — Ed.], but did little to help the country’s high unemployment rate. At 9.7 percent, unemployment is nearly the same as it was a year ago.

What could possibly go wrong? America’s in the best of hands. Our Democrat Congresswoman here in Ohio’s 13th District, Representative Betty Sutton, has been in charge since 2006. It’s been rainbows and unicorns ever since.
Unemployment under ObamaStill, let’s take a look back. Naturally, you completely forgot that $787 billion stimulus that Obama and Congress rammed through last year, didn’t you? It was a spending orgy that was supposed to “create or save” gazillions of jobs. Remember that? It’s the brilliant job-creating scheme that didn’t actually, um, work. Who could’ve seen that one coming? Total shocker.
Here in Ohio, unemployment is much worse than the national average … but that’s not all. There’s still $381 billion of that money lying around unspent, collecting dust in Washington. Why do you suppose Congress isn’t redirecting that money to this new “emergency” instead of extracting another $50 billion from your pocket?
This new plea for another “emergency” bailout demonstrates (again) that there’s no reason to trust the Democrats when they talk about fiscal responsibility. They’re as trustworthy as a drug addict squeezing his relatives for money: “This is the last time I’ll ask. I promise. I’ll check myself into rehab, first thing tomorrow, but just this once I’ve gotta have this fix. It’s an emergency and I’ll die without it. Pinky swear!” If you think this is a one time deal, then there’s some lovely oceanfront property in Death Valley that’s got your name on it.
Congress lives in a strange alternate universe where your money is their money. When the economy’s booming, the Congressional Fantasyland response is to “invest in America” by taxing The Rich™ (people who create wealth and hire you) because they’re easy targets for class warfare rhetoric and the politics of envy. When the economy’s crashing, the Congressional Fantasyland response is to suck more money into Washington so they can spread it around.
Hey, wait a second. Where have we heard that idea before?

It should come as no surprise that Betty Sutton, a big fan of Barack Obama, has the same strategy for healing all that ails us.

Phase One: Throw taxpayer money at problem.
Phase Two: ?
Phase Three: Miraculous results.

Think of it as the Underpants Gnome Theory of Government:
underpants gnomes
Now here’s the kicker. Not only does Betty Sutton genuinely believe that the Underpants Gnomes are worth imitating, she personally benefits from Obama’s new “emergency” $50 billion bailout of public sector unions.

A spending proposal everyone can oppose (Updated)

In an effort to help Representative Betty Sutton (D-OH) break her streak of relentless profligacy with her constituents’ money (including stimulus packages for terrorists), I invite her to take a look at a Federal Trade Commission scheme to prop up failing newspapers with revenues from taxes on internet news sites, cell phone bills, iPads, Kindles, and computers.

C’mon, Betty. This one’s a no-brainer. Be brave.

11:15 Update: Welcome, Sutton staffers!

Will Betty Sutton oppose Obama’s terrorist stimulus? (Updated)

Look, Congresswoman Sutton, I know you’re not exactly renowned for your fiscal discipline, but can you at least muster an objection to giving a $400,000,000 terrorist stimulus package to Hamas?

The United States will contribute $400 million in development aid to the Palestinian territories and work with Israel to loosen its embargo on Gaza, President Barack Obama said Wednesday.

Surely there are better things to do with taxpayer money:

Let me get this straight. Our economy has cratered. Unemployment is nearly 10 percent. The national debt is expected to exceed our gross national product by next year. And we’re giving $400,000,000 to our mortal enemies in Gaza?
$400,000,000 to the Hamas-led death cult allied with Iran and Syria? $400,000,000 to the people who celebrated the destruction of the twin towers? $400,000,000 to rain thousands more rockets upon Israeli women and children?
The Right, the Left and everyone in between needs to raise hell. This. Cannot. Happen.

Consider it a throwaway gesture of self-preservation goodwill towards your bitter, gun- and Bible-clinging constituents in an election year. Your radical progressive “populist” base will forgive you for throwing a bone to those nutty right-wing kooks who hold to the quaint notion that we shouldn’t fund terrorism man-caused disasters with their money.

12:20 PM Update: Welcome, Sutton staffers! Nice to see you’re awake.

Tom Ganley has a Cash For Clunkers problem

Cash For Clunkers is Betty Sutton’s baby. She touts the wasteful program as the crown jewel of her dubious achievements in office. Under normal circumstances Cash For Clunkers would be a big fat target for any Sutton opponent to hit, but unfortunately our nominee seems unable to pull the trigger.
Judging from his lackluster performance to date, it will take a minor miracle for car dealer Tom Ganley to erase his earlier praise for the program:

Tom Ganley, owner of the Ganley Auto Group, estimates the government owes him $3 million for the cars he’s sold.
“In essence, I and other car dealers are loaning money to the federal government, interest free,” Ganley said. “I feel for some of the smaller dealers across the country. They could actually sell themselves out of business.”

And despite being owed millions, Ganley called the program an overwhelming success.
“It has certainly primed the pump and accelerated auto sales,” Ganley said.

That’s bad. Blatant flip-flopping for political advantage is worse, and that’s exactly the accusation that the Sutton campaign will use to tar her opponent. The Ganley campaign has so far made one weak attempt to backpedal:

Ganley and Renacci both maintain the sales program was a clunker and that they only participated to meet customers’ expectations. They said it sparked a temporary sales spike followed by a slowdown, and had negative long-term effects on the industry and used-car consumers who could have bought trade-ins the program destroyed.
“The program was, at its basic level, an unnecessary intrusion of government into the private business sector,” says Ganley campaign manager Jeff Longstreth, contending that the government payments helped car buyers, not dealers. “It was unnecessary federal spending that is indicative of the current administration’s policy of spend, spend, spend.”

Least trusted professionsThe argument’s right on target, but how does Ganley plan to credibly criticize a program that reportedly paid him $20 million for selling somewhere north of 800 cars? Ignoring the problem won’t make it go away. If he intends to pursue the “it was a temporary spike” line of attack, he’ll have to cast doubt on a Maritz Automotive Research Group report that suggests otherwise (hint, hint). Ganley’s campaign site makes no mention of the Maritz report, which was released three months ago. Nor is there any mention of Cash For Clunkers. Is the Ganley campaign waiting for an engraved invitation to deal with the elephant in the room?
Tom, I’ll be blunt. You’re a used car salesman looking to become a politician. That means you’ve got more than the usual public relations handicap to overcome. Unless you stop deluding yourself that you’ll win simply because you’re not Betty Sutton, and do it soon, you’re doomed. A lazy campaign is a losing campaign. Get off your butt and convince your potential constituents that you’re worth our votes.

How much spending is enough, Betty?

In the spirit of my Simple Questions For Progressives series, I have a question for Congresswoman Betty Sutton: how do you decide whether any given government spending proposal is too big? My best guess is that the only “bad spending” in your book is military spending; I could be wrong, but I doubt it. I’d love to hear if you have ever voted against a non-DoD spending bill since your election in 2006, and if so, why you voted “no.”
Nichole Reynolds, please tell your boss I’ll post the entirety of her response here, unedited. I know your office reads this blog.

Medina GOP: send Betty Sutton “back to the kitchen”

This document is purportedly a copy of a mailer from the Medina County Republican Party. Look for the section headed by “Had enough hope & change?” and read the second bullet.
Medina County GOP mailer on Rep. Betty Sutton (D-OH)
Here’s the text:

  • Let’s replace Pelosi’s Puppet John Boccieri with a good solid conservative. Let’s see — he was against ObamaCare before he was for it!
  • Let’s take Betty Sutton out of the House and put her back in the kitchen!
  • Let’s fire Harry Reid from his job as Senate Majority Leader by putting Republicans in the majority!
  • Let’s put Governor Strickland in the unemployment line by electing a fiscal conservative who will tear down the barriers to job creation in Ohio!

If this is a real mailer, then the people who approved it need to be tossed out on their ears. This is 2010, geniuses, not an episode of “Mad Men.”
First of all, homemakers deserve honor and respect. Wise cracks about sending a woman back to the kitchen are just plain offensive. Claiming that a move from Congress to “the kitchen” is a demotion has it precisely backwards. To say that I have more respect for the average homemaker than for the average congresscritter is an understatement on a par with saying I prefer strawberry ice cream to cockroach soufflé.
Second, this is just dumb politics. Only an oblivious tool would think that the contents of a public mailer will never get into the opposition’s hands. Even internal documents (especially the stupid ones) find their way to the press. This was a public mailer, you morons. Way to play right into the Democrats’ stereotype of Republicans as knuckle-dragging misogynists. All they need is one juvenile and insulting wisecrack from you and they’ve got ammo for attack ads all summer long. Never mind that the conservative movement is home to Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Liz Cheney, Laura Ingraham, Star Parker, Anita MonCrief, Michelle Malkin, Jill Stanek, S.E. Cupp, Kathryn Jean Lopez, and millions upon millions of women just as independent and hard-working as they are. The media and the Democrats are longing to play the victim card to defend Betty Sutton’s uncertain seat in the House, and now they think they have an excuse.
Way to go.
4/29/10 Update: It took him a week, but Tom Ganley finally responded to the uproar.

Instead of talking about creating jobs, Betty Sutton wants to talk about a newsletter sent out by the Medina County Republican Party. I’m sure you all have heard about the newsletter and the idiotic comment about Betty Sutton included in the newsletter. For the record, I had nothing to do with the newsletter or the comment. My campaign, along with several other candidates, paid for an advertisement in an insert included in the newsletter. No one involved in our campaign saw the comment until it appeared in a Plain Dealer article last week. This is the equivalent of buying an ad in a newspaper and then being held responsible for the editorial content the next day. Further, we have not been endorsed by the Medina County GOP or the Chairman Bill Heck, and we have made it abundantly clear to them we do not support this kind of inappropriate language.
I believe the comment was very offensive, and I do not support it. I also think it was offensive how Betty Sutton’s first response was to send out a fundraising letter. I hate stereotypes, and I do not tolerate them. As I am not an elected official or a member of the Central or Executive Committees and do not have any influence over the Medina County GOP, I cannot control what they decide to do about this situation. The only thing I can control is how my campaign conducts itself, and I am very proud of the race we are running. This will serve as our last comment on this subject. We should be talking about creating jobs, not this fake outrage.

Good reply, but way late.

Betty Sutton loses The Morning Journal’s endorsement

That’s gotta sting:

Sutton received our endorsement in 2008 among a lackluster field of challengers. But her subsequent participation in the liberal Democratic train wreck now bankrupting the nation and bloating the size of the federal government must be stopped in the November election.

[Republican challenger Tom] Ganley hates wasting money, especially the way President Obama and Democrats in Congress including Sutton are throwing it around. Ganley foresees the high cost of Obamacare destroying small businesses.
Ganley is correct when he argues that it’s time to replace lawyer lawmakers such as Sutton, who love spending other people’s money, with businessmen like himself who spent their lives making money and producing jobs.

America needs to take Congress back from the wrecking crew there now. Our support, and endorsement, goes to Tom Ganley in the May 4 Republican primary, and we look forward to his victory in the Nov. 2 general election for Ohio’s 13th Congressional District.

Are the long knives out for Betty?

Questions for OH-13 challenger Justin Wooden

Mr. Wooden, how on God’s green Earth can you continue as a member of the Democrat Party after its headlong dive last night into socialism, taxpayer-funded abortion, and blatant corruption?
Justin WoodenYou attend Tea Party rallies. You claim to be pro-life. You claim to be pro-free markets. You claim to be anti-corruption. You claim to be pro-military. You claim to be pro-gun rights. You claim to be anti-Obamacare, for Heaven’s sake. Nevertheless, your party stands in opposition to all of your proclaimed stances. Talk about cognitive dissonance! This ain’t your father’s Democrat Party. Scoop Jackson’s influence burned away decades ago.
If you first defeat Betty Sutton in the primary election for Ohio’s 13th Congressional District, and if you then defeat your Republican opponent and become our Congressman, will you caucus with your party? Will you support its leaders, like Nancy Pelosi? What’s to keep you from being the new Bart Stupak, Mary Jo Kilroy, Marcy Kaptur, or … Betty Sutton?
If your party has decisively left you, if you are who you claim to be, then how can you reconcile that with your continued membership in the Democrat Party? Are you naïve? Are you hiding your true beliefs? Do you lack the courage to leave a socialist party bent on destroying our republic? Why are you a Democrat in 2010?
Explain it to me. Please.
—-
5:00 PM Update: How about you, Dan Moadus?

Betty Sutton (OH-13) will vote “yes” on Obamacare

Unless you’ve spent the last four years living in a cave, this is no surprise at all. In a statement e-mailed to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Betty Sutton said:

Obama medalEvery year more than 40,000 people die because they don’t have health insurance coverage, and in this great nation it should not be that way. The legislation is not perfect and indeed contains provisions that I will continue to strive to improve, but I will vote for the bill. By passing this legislation we will take the long overdue step toward ending the egregious, discriminatory practices of insurance companies that deny care based on pre-existing conditions and impose outrageous premium increases. This legislation will also strengthen the solvency of Medicare, lower drug costs for our seniors, and make health insurance more affordable and accessible for small businesses and individuals.

The bosses of the big labor unions want this bill passed, and what union bosses want, Betty Sutton delivers.
By the way, Betty, that “40,000 deaths” statistic is a complete crock of poo:

So, how did these political doctors come up with the 44,000 figure? They used data from a health survey conducted between 1988 and 1994. The questionnaires asked a sample of 9,000 participants if they were insured and how they rated their own health. The federal Centers for Disease Control tracked the deaths of people in the sample group through the year 2000. Drs. Himmelstein, Woolhandler, and company then crunched the numbers and attributed deaths to lack of health insurance for all the participants who initially self-reported that they had no insurance and then died for any reason over the 12-year tracking period.
At no time did the original researchers or the single-payer activists who piggy-backed off their data ever verify whether the supposed casualties of America’s callous health care system had insurance or not.

To boil it all down in plain English: The single-payer scientists had no way of assessing whether the survey participants received insurance coverage between the time they answered the questionnaires and the time they died. They had no way of assessing whether the deaths could have been averted with health insurance coverage. A significant portion of those classified as “uninsured” may not have even been uninsured, based on past studies that actually did verify insurance status. But the Himmelstein team just took the rate of uninsurance from the original study (3.3 percent), applied it to census data, and voila: more than 44,000 Americans are dying from lack of insurance.

At least do your constituents the favor of using honest data when you try to support your socialist initiatives, Betty.

Betty Sutton decides ACORN needs more money

Rep. Betty Sutton just introduced a warm-and-fuzzy-sounding piece of legislation. It’s called the Foreclosure Mandatory Mediation Act of 2010:

Rep. Betty Sutton (D-OH13) joined Ohio Reps. Marcia L. Fudge (D-OH11) and Mary Jo Kilroy (D-OH15), as well as Reps. Maxine Waters (D-CA) and Kendrick Meek (D-FL) to introduce H.R. 4635–a measure to combat foreclosures. Ohio has been particularly impacted by the foreclosure crisis and projections indicate no signs of change. In Ohio’s 13th Congressional District alone, 17,555 homes are projected to be foreclosed upon over the next four years. This legislation will require lenders of Federal loans or guarantees to enter into mediation with homeowners prior to placing the property in foreclosure or a sheriff’s sale.

Since anything advocated by Maxine Waters automatically gets my antennae twitching, I went to the bill’s text, which contains this key nugget (the emphasis and links are mine):

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, before a qualified mortgagee may initiate a foreclosure proceeding or a sheriff sale, the qualified mortgagee shall conduct, consistent with any applicable State or local requirements, a one-time mediation with the affected mortgagor and a housing counseling agency, at the expense of the qualified mortgagee.
For purposes of this section the term ‘housing counseling agency’ means a housing counseling agency certified by the Secretary under section 106(e) of the Housing and Urban Development Act of 1968 (12 U.S.C. 1701x(e)); or a neighborhood housing services program established by the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation under section 606 of the Housing and Community Development Amendments of 1978 (42 U.S.C. 8105);

The parties are forced into mediation (even if it’s a slam-dunk case of delinquency by the borrower), and look who foots the entire bill for the mediator’s fees: the lender trying to foreclose on the delinquent borrower. When the government keeps forcing a company to incur new costs, the company must eventually pass on those costs to its customers. Otherwise the company will go bankrupt.
If this law passes, it will end up costing you more to get a mortgage. Care to guess which legislators will then wail and gnash their teeth about “predatory lenders screwing the poor” and “fat cat bankers jacking up fees” when those inevitable effects occur? Now, this is par for the course among politicians who have no clue how a free market works. They think the solution to every government-imposed problem is more government regulation and spending. What’s unusual is that this isn’t the worst part of the bill.

Charlie Rangel’s influence extends to OH-13

Charlie Rangel asleep on a beachSo, it seems Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-NY) will step down fight the rush to remove him from his chairmanship of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee. His fellow progressives have decided to leave Corruptocrat Charlie twisting in the wind. That’s no surprise.
What does surprise me is the mild reaction from Rep. Betty Sutton (D-OH), my Congresswoman. Maybe that’s because Rangel gave Sutton $5000 in 2006. Heck, if it weren’t for the sudden danger to her cushy job from Republican Tom Ganley, she likely wouldn’t have gotten out in front of Rangel’s immolation at all.
I’m sure she’s grateful, Charlie, but you’re just too toxic these days.
 
3/3 12:45 AM Update: Spin, Betty, spin.

Quite a lot of blinking in that segment. I guess it was seven grand Rangel gave her, which Sabrina Eaton reports is to be donated to local charities.