Election 2012: November 2011 Archives

BatesLine is pleased to welcome an ad from the Oklahoma Republican Party for the 2012 Oklahoma Straw Poll:

As we recently announced, the Oklahoma Republican Party is holding our inaugural Oklahoma Straw Poll. Many states hold presidential straw polls every four years creating national publicity and financial support for their respective state, but we thought it was about time the reddest state in the country had one of its own!

Straw polls are important because many times they serve as the first indicator of the strength of a candidate's organization and message.

We want to give Republicans from all across Oklahoma an opportunity to make their voice heard.

From November 21st until December 5th, donate $5 to the OKGOP to vote in the Oklahoma Straw Poll. Many Straw Poll voters can end up paying hundreds with travel costs, etc in order to vote in their states' poll, but we are making a way for you to support your candidate and do it from the comfort of your own living room!

The deadline for voting in the Oklahoma Straw Poll is Monday, December 5, 2011, at 5:00 pm. Click the ad at the top of the page to vote.


This is a great opportunity for Oklahoma Republicans to have a voice, and the money goes to a good cause. Whatever you may or may not like about the national party, the Oklahoma Republican Party is a low-overhead, grassroots-run organization that has produced amazing results.

There's a reason that the Republican nominee won all 77 counties in 2004 and 2008, that Republicans swept all statewide offices in 2010, and controls supermajorities of both houses of the legislature, after decades in the minority. Yes, Oklahoma voters are conservative, but a voter's views make no difference unless that voter turns out on Election Day. After a disheartening defeat in 2002, Oklahoma Republicans elected Gary Jones (now our State Auditor) as chairman, and Jones instituted a massive turnout effort for 2004, involving hundreds, perhaps, thousands, of local volunteers dropping voter information packets on the doorstep and making calls to remind people to vote. Matt Pinnell ran that successful program, and he's now chairman of the Oklahoma Republican Party.

Beyond turnout efforts, the state party provides training for potential candidates and their helpers and runs the state and district conventions that will elect Oklahoma's delegates to next year's Republican National Convention. You can vote in the Oklahoma Straw Poll and contribute your $5 (or more) knowing that the money will be used effectively.

Vote now!

From Rusty Weiss at Newsbusters:

Bill Randall is a candidate for Congress, running in North Carolina's 13th Congressional District. Mr. Randall also happens to be an African-American. In early October, Randall had a campaign billboard vandalized with a spray-painted, vulgar phallic symbol, accompanied by the letters "KKK". It was the kind of message that would normally launch the media into full-blown racial apoplexy.

One small problem. Bill Randall is a Tea Party Conservative Republican.

Randall filed a complaint over a month ago with the local sheriff, issued a news release, but the local daily, the Raleigh News & Observer, has ignored the story, despite having covered similar acts of political vandalism in the past, according to Weiss's research, including one incident that occurred just 10 days after Randall's sign was vandalized.

One TV news station, albeit not in the same market, did cover the story, showing part of the graffiti (the KKK) and obscuring the obscene part. (Via breitbart.tv.)

Randall grew up in the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans and served 27 years in the Navy, rising to the rank of Command Master Chief.

Randall was the Republican nominee in NC-13 in 2010, when the district was heavily Democratic, receiving 44.5% of the vote against a four-term Democratic incumbent. This time around the legislature has redrawn the district to be predominantly Republican (and drawn the incumbent into a different district).

The aforementioned News & Observer scolded the Randall campaign in an October 28, 2010, editorial (Tulsa Library NewsBank link) about the campaign's "overzealous" poll monitors, watching early voting to ensure against voter fraud. Early voting would make it possible for someone to show up and vote in one person's name at the early voting location (no ID was required in NC), then show up again on Election Day and vote in your own name at your usual polling place. The N&O editorial pooh-poohs the risks of this sort of fraud, but Tulsans have heard of this sort of thing happening.


Here's a link to the Bill Randall for Congress website.

Publius Forum has a video from the Randall campaign, spoofing the media double-standard and lack of interest in this case of hateful vandalism. (The video shows the graffiti uncensored.)

Thurber's Thoughts has more about Randall and notes the broader problem with the liberal backlash against the growing number of African-American conservatives who are running for office or are otherwise active in the political sphere. She mentions two speakers at last week's BlogCon '11: Deneen Borelli of the National Center for Public Policy Research and PJTV video humorist Alfonzo Rachel -- both conservatives who happen to be African-American and who spoke at BlogCon about the hostility directed at that combination of characteristics.

The challenges facing African-Americans who move from left to right is documented in an upcoming film, which was previewed at Blogcon. A Runaway Slave focuses on the Reverend C. L. Bryant, a Baptist minister who served as president of an NAACP chapter and is now active in the Tea Party movement in Shreveport. The slavery Bryant calls all Americans to escape is an enervating dependency on government. Here's a preview:

freedomworksforamerica.pngIt's been an exciting two days here at BlogCon11, FreedomWorks' 2nd annual conference for conservative bloggers. The sessions have covered policy, politics, and technology. Beyond the formal sessions, I've been renewing old acquaintances and building new friendships with bloggers, think-tankers, columnists, and activists from all over America.

I hope to do a summary of the event later, but one particular session pleased me no end, and I want to pass it along.

FreedomWorks for America is the FreedomWorks-affiliated Super PAC, and they're in the process of vetting candidates for the 2012 federal election.

FreedomWorks for America is trying to ensure that the new president is backed by (or faced with) a tough-minded majority of senators and congressmen who will do what we need to do to solve our fiscal crisis before we wind up like Greece. They want to make fiscal conservatives the majority of the majority party, controlling the agenda in both houses of Congress. This effort can't wait for the general election. It has to start well before the primary, helping solid fiscal conservatives to prevail over conservatives-of-convenience in Republican primaries.

This PAC won't be buying TV time. Instead, it will work to connect fiscally conservative Tea Party-type activists and donors with candidates who are worthy of their support, a "force multiplier for the Tea Party," as FreedomWorks political director Russ Walker put it. The website will help connect activists with any campaign in the country.

"You have to get your own house in order before you can get out there and start taking on the Democrats," commented Dick Armey, Chairman of FreedomWorks. "Our Super PAC is not about buying television ads, it's about engaging the American public, and getting them outside talking to their neighbors and putting up yard signs. We want to build a grassroots army of active volunteers that will work to retire Democrats in the House and Senate, but also hold Republicans accountable to the principles upon which they got elected."

Features on the website include candidate profile pages, official endorsements, interactive ranking systems for candidates on the issues, links to pledge time towards community organizing efforts, links to pledge money to a specific campaign, phone banking, grassroots training videos, and downloadable activist toolkits and door-to-door Get Out The Vote (GOTV) materials. It also features a "grassroots lab" where politically-minded volunteers can submit ideas on how to defeat President Obama in 2012, and rank the ideas already submitted.

"The website is designed to empower the leaderless, decentralized community of the tea party movement. There is no leader, no community organizing Czar. It's simply a political toolkit for individuals across the country to use as they see fit, with unique knowledge of their community and circumstances," commented Matt Kibbe, President of FreedomWorks.

It's a tough job to find candidates who will remain faithful to conservative principles once they get to Washington. Executive director Max Pappas noted that, with the popularity of the Tea Party movement, every candidate knows the right words to say, so FreedomWorks for America dives deep into the candidate's record and philosophy to find the candidate's fundamental beliefs. Without strong roots in the philosophical and economic basis for limited government, a public official is easily swayed by the prevailing winds of lobbyist pressure and Washington conventional wisdom.

Checking a candidate's roots means digging back through a candidate's complete public record, going all the way back to earliest part of a candidate's career, votes taken, endorsements made, and contributions given. If a politician endorsed, say, a city sales tax increase or a crony-capitalist state tax credit, it's going to count against him when he tries to move up to federal office.

In addition to the abundant amount of searchable online data (e.g., news stories, minutes of public meetings), FreedomWorks for America looks to local free-market, limited-government activists and bloggers to dig up information on candidates and to provide context. Local grass-roots opinion matters.

PACs connected with groups like FreedomWorks and Club for Growth played an important role in the election of strong conservative freshman senators like Mike Lee (UT), who defeated an squishy incumbent Republican, Marco Rubio (FL), who won over an ex-Republican governor who showed his true colors, and Rand Paul (KY). In each case, the national free-market PACs influence helped a consistent fiscal conservative prevail over a wishy-washy or weak Republican.

Having this kind of scrutiny from influential national conservative organizations will give local activists leverage in keeping Republicans from turning into RINOs on local issues. At the same time, it places a burden on us to ensure that key pieces of the record don't disappear into the ether. Campaign websites (and endorsements) often vanish from the web quickly after election day. In some cases, they never show up online. Local activists can help by scanning and posting candidate mailers and key documents and recording public meetings and political ads, tagging video and audio with the names of those involved, so that later searchers can find the information.

The FreedomWorks for America candidate browser lets you see the list of all announced and incumbent candidates and 2012 candidates already endorsed. Registered users of FreedomConnector can rate and leave comments on the candidates.

So far FWA has endorsed five Senate candidates Ted Cruz in Texas, Jeff Flake in Arizona, Adam Hasner in Florida, Richard Mourdock in Indiana, and Don Stenberg in Nebraska. I got to meet Mourdock and Stenberg at a reception Saturday night. Both serve as treasurers of their respective states, making real budget cuts to their departments (not just cuts from the previous rate of growth).

FWA isn't the only group taking this approach. Sen. Mike Lee has set up a leadership PAC called the Constitutional Conservative Fund, using similar criteria to identify candidates worthy of support. So far they've endorsed Cruz, Flake, Stenberg, and Dan Bongino in Maryland.

Stay tuned for more blog entries in coming days about more force multipliers that FreedomWorks and its affiliates will be making available to conservative activists for this important 2012 election cycle.

The Tulsa County Republican Party is holding a fundraising estate sale this Friday and Saturday, November 4-5, 2011, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days, at 3635 S. Louisville, Tulsa, OK, 74135.

For a $5 donation, you can attend a come-and-go preview party on Thursday night, 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Proceeds will go to cover the county party's operating expenses, which include running a headquarters office, which provides the party an ongoing presence and point of contact for voters and candidates, and holding next year's Tulsa County Republican Convention, at which delegates to congressional district and state conventions will be elected and a county platform will be considered, the planks of which may ultimately wind up in state and national party platforms.

It's important to keep in mind that the Tulsa County Republican Party is a grassroots organization The county party's officials are elected by Republican voters who attend precinct caucuses and the county convention, and they receive no compensation. The national and state party organizations provide absolutely no funding for the county party.

They're still looking for large items to sell, such as furniture. They also need volunteers:


To donate items or arrange for special pickup of larger items, call Rich Fiedler (918-742-4503); To volunteer to make calls, setup or run the sale, call Alana Duvall (918-294-3780) or GOP Headquarters (918-627-5702)


If you can help, please call the numbers above. Otherwise, please plan to stop by and purchase some items in support of a good cause.


Some links and notes about presidential candidate Herman Cain, related to Politico's thinly-sourced barely-a-story about decades-old sexual harassment allegations.

I got to know Karol Markowicz at the 2004 Republican National Convention. She had just served as a staffer on Cain's 2004 bid for U. S. Senate in Georgia. (Cain lost the July 2004 primary to Johnny Isakson.) I remember her speaking with glowing admiration for Cain, for his intelligence, character, and political views. Here's what she said about Herman Cain back on July 25, 2004, in her post-mortem of the Cain campaign (interesting reading in its own right):

If you work or volunteer in politics, I hope you will someday have the opportunity to work for someone that you admire as much as I admire Herman Cain. He is a breath of the freshest air, he is honest, direct, engaging, brilliant, funny and very, very real. He will never forget your name after meeting you. He will never try to pretend to be something he isn't. It takes guts that I can barely understand to do what he did down here in Georgia. He shaped the debate, his opponents ended up using his language and positions as their own. He is a force, if you ever have the opportunity to hear him speak, go do it. You will never forget it. You will not be the same when it's over. I know he will do great things and I will be watching closely.

In April 12, 2006, she asked for prayers for Cain, undergoing treatment for colon cancer:

Whenever I'm disenchanted with politics and politicians, whenever I think they're all the same and nothing matters, thinking of Herman Cain makes me remember that there are very real exceptions.

Powerline blog links to a Minneapolis Star-Tribune story about Herman Cain's years as an executive at Pillsbury

"My career spans 38 years and I've worked for 26 different managers," said Frank Taylor, a recently retired Burger King financial executive whom Cain hired as his regional controller in 1983. "Herman was far and away the best I've worked for in terms of getting a team together, sharing a vision and accomplishing the goals. And nothing diverted him."

Cain also shared the wealth. When Burger King distributed $50,000 apiece to the regional vice presidents as reward for good performance in 1985, most of the regional bosses spent it on a trip to a posh resort for themselves and other managers and spouses. The enlisted troops got a dinner. Cain took everybody in his office, including administrative staff, on the same three-day reward cruise, Taylor recalled....

"I worked with him fairly closely at Burger King," recalled George Mileusnic, a former Pillsbury executive, now a Twin Cities consultant. "He was good strategically and good with people, including working long hours in Burger King stores to get that bottom-up experience. He had about 500 stores in that Philadelphia region and he did a great job."...

Along with his analytical skills, Cain brought an entrepreneurial fervor to the hurried turnaround at Godfather's in 1986-87. He listened, asked questions and acted, including closing stores, shifting people and even cooking and testing new products in the company's kitchen.

"I'm Herman Cain and this ain't no April Fool's joke," he told Godfather's employees when he arrived on April 1, 1986. "We are not dead. Our objective is to prove to Pillsbury and everybody else that we will survive."

An accomplished singer and pianist, Cain occasionally led the headquarters crew in after-hours song, and performed charitable gigs in Omaha, backed by a chorus of managers. He also demanded that senior managers know every employee working for them on a first-name basis and occasionally quizzed executives on that and other personnel issues.

"That was pretty unique," Mileusnic said. "Those stories got around Pillsbury. Herman was very quantitative and analytical, but he demanded that everybody be engaged and every employee must be appreciated and respected."

Michael Warren of the Weekly Standard spoke to aides and assistants to Herman Cain, including Karol Markowicz, longtime executive assistant Sibby Wolfson, and 2004 campaign political director Matt Carrothers -- none of whom currently work for Cain:

"It's just not Herman," says Sibby Wolfson, who was Cain's executive assistant from 1997 through his first campaign for office in 2004, in a phone interview. "He's got a lovely wife, a lovely family."

Did Wolfson ever see Cain act in a way that could be construed as sexual harassment? "No, God, no," she says. "Nothing. Absolutely nothing. In fact, I think Herman was careful to act in the opposite way."...

"Never once have I ever seen anything but professional behavior" from Cain, says Matt Carrothers, who was Cain's political director from December 2003 to July 2004. "I find [the allegations] extremely hard to believe," Carrothers says in a phone interview....

"This is a man of incredible character," Carrothers says. "He has nothing but respect for women."

Other veterans of the 2004 campaign agree. "The allegations seem completely unbelievable to me," says Karol Markowicz, who was Cain's assistant press secretary in '04. "He was never anything but a completely perfect gentleman." She says many who worked on that campaign have the same assessment.

"Sometimes someone is nice or good to you personally but you know they behave a different way toward other people," Markowicz says. "Herman is not like that. I never saw one moment where he wavered from being an upstanding, solid person."

Karol called into last night's Mark Levin show, starting at 31:25 for about 3 minutes. And she has a column standing up for Herman Cain in today's New York Post:

With Cain, however, his electricity comes from his authenticity. People fall for him because he is so unpolished and real. He is a serious, solid man who speaks often of the importance of family and faith. He never seems as if he is selling a line or covering up his true self.

MORE: I'm impressed that Herman Cain is willing to speak the truth about Planned Parenthood's racist roots, and not backing down an inch when challenged:

"Here's why I support de-funding Planned Parenthood, because you don't hear a lot of people talking about this: When Margaret Sanger--check my history--started Planned Parenthood, the objective was to put these centers in primarily black communities so they could help kill black babies before they came into the world," Cain responded.

"You don't see that talked that much about," Cain said. "It's not Planned Parenthood. No, it's planned genocide. You can quote me on that."...

"It's carrying out its original mission," said Cain. "I've talked to young girls who go in there and they don't talk about how you plan parenthood. They don't talk about adoption as an option. They don't say bring your parents in so you we can talk to you before you make this decision.

"Talk to some young lady who has gone into some of these centers to see what kind of conversation takes place," said Cain. "They have basically carried out their original mission. There's not any planning other than to abort the baby.

"When they have an objective to put 75 percent [Planned Parenthood facilities] in African American communities, says to me they are targeting blacks," Cain said....

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Election 2012 category from November 2011.

Election 2012: June 2011 is the previous archive.

Election 2012: December 2011 is the next archive.

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