Connect with us

Opinions

The most important races of 2018: Part 1

Published

on

The most important races of 2018 Part 1

I don’t normally do article series, but this time I must. I break this up not because of volume but instead because of metrics this because there are different measurements of importance that would yield different results. Both measurements have long term potential but for different reasons. The first one is the more immediate importance, and this focuses on personnel.

Primaries have the chance to nominate ideological champions over “practical” politicians. Nominating the next Rand Paul or Ted Cruz would be a major impact on the Senate, Congress or Governorship for perhaps decades to come, and also a major impact on the state and country. Therefore, much of the races mentioned in this session will focus on the primaries for their higher emphasis on the individuals running as opposed to which party holds or doesn’t hold the seat. This measure of importance brings more Senate seats while the second is more focused on states.

This isn’t about races that are hotly contested, rather it’s about races with a good chance to send a very strong candidate that will shake things up in some way shape for the state or nation as a whole.

US Senate – Missouri

Claire McCaskill won her seat in 2012 against a self imploding candidate. Now she’s in trouble in a high stakes Senate race. Her potential challengers are numerous. A lot of personalities are hedging their bets. Steve Bannon’s horse is State Attorney General, Josh Hawley. Hawley resembles Ted Cruz, in that they both were on the winning sides of a major SCOTUS decision. For Hawley, it was Hobby Lobby. Hawley won the Attorney General seat in 2016 and is already seeking election into a higher, easier, office. Perhaps that’s a character flaw, or perhaps a sign of great ambition. The biggest conservative objection on paper is his over-admiration of Teddy Roosevelt. He is a strong candidate; the only thing holding him back is Bannon.

Then there’s former Libertarian challenger to Gary Johnson, Austin Petersen, a darling of conservative Twitter. Petersen is a pro-life Libertarian who wanted to rebrand the party in the same way, Rand Paul wants to rebrand Republicans. Wanting the best chance at making an impact, he switched parties to run for Senate. Petersen is a disciple of Ayn Rand, and with that comes atheism. Petersen is a grassroots candidate to watch out for.

Other candidates, I wouldn’t suggest are as strong as these two. But also keep an eye on conservative prodigy, Courtland Sykes. Courtland Sykes appears to have conservatism and also a solid military background. The other likable campaign touch is his two term pledge. We’ll see if he has the drive and skill to campaign in a crowded field.

Missouri presents a chance to put a really good conservative in the Senate, something there is a massive shortage of.

US Senate – Wyoming

John Barrasso finds himself facing reelection. Barrasso is a conservative on matters of guns, but is hardly frugal in countering the deficit. Expect a challenger or two… Erik Prince is considering the run. He would be Bannon backed for his informal ties to the Trump administration transition team. Prince very wealthy and could pose a threat if money won races. Then there’s Foster Friess. Friess is a Christian who so happens to be a highly skilled investment manager. The Trump administration decision to betray the Iraqi-Kurds nudged him into teasing a Senate run. Freiss seems like an ideal candidate for conservatives in Wyoming should he decide to run. But odds are, one of these rich guys throws their hat in to upset the incumbent.

US Senate – Arizona

Arizona has sent some terrible senators to DC. Several attempts to primary John McCain turned fruitless. However, anti-establishment now need not campaign against an incumbent seeing as Jeff Flake would rather not seek reelection than lose. This leaves a hotly contested field. Kelli Ward is first to stand out. She lost to McCain but had her sights set on building her base for another try. Ward stands as the current frontrunner in a Flakeless primary.

Another possible name is Martha McSally. Big government republicans are seeking replace Jeff Flake with McSally. McSally is no ally of Trump and resides in swing district that could have her returning to the private sector come 2019 anyway. So a Senate run may the best way to avoid losing should Democrats mount a sizable attack for her seat, which they should.

Another GOP candidate is the extremely young looking Craig Britain is running on an ambitious “Taxation is theft”, end the Fed platform. Then there’s Nicholas Tutora a health care (repeal and replace) focused candidate.

The Democrats will look to compete in this race. Kyrsten Sinema is a more centrist democrat who is in favor of Kate’s Law but not withholding funding for sanctuary cities as the representative from D-9. Expect a more hardline liberal to challenge her. This race may not provide an ideal conservative or liberal but to Republicans, it is more about retaining the seat with an Arizona Senator who won’t be an obstacle.

US Senate – Texas

Ted Cruz doesn’t seem like he has all that much competition but nonetheless keeping him in the Senate is vital to conservatives. Losing him would spell death for conservatism. That being said, expect democrats to throw another Wendy Davis into this fight, not someone who can win, but someone who can diametrically oppose Ted Cruz.

US House – Paul Ryan’s seat

This 1st District of Wisconsin is safely Republican, for now. Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan faces general unpopularity and a big name primary challenger Paul Nehlen. Nehlen lost embarrassingly last time and is looking to try again, much like Kelly Ward, though not as bad. Nehlen is a hardcore Trump MAGA spout who has reportedly gone off the Alt-Right deepend even for Breitbart folks. The Paul alternative is Nick Polce. Polce is running on opposing career politicians, which Paul Ryan certainly has become as opposed to a hardlined MAGA approach. This more grassroots approach could make this primary quite interesting.

Governor of California

This race seems solidly in the hands of liberals as its gearing to be a competitive primary between union favorite, Lt. Gov Gavin Newsome, and former LA mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. Unless Peter Thiel runs or a Roy Moore sized scandal erupts conveniently before the election, one of these two is the likely next governor. This race is important because of California’s continued sprint into liberalism. Although perhaps this the years of Jerry Brown will make a republican candidate a viable option much like how Larry Hogan became Governor of liberal Maryland. It’s hard for people to knowingly vote for higher taxes. And with Trump tax cuts, an anti-tax Republican may find themselves in a more formidable position.

US Senate – Maine

This seat was won by independent candidate, Angus King, in 2012. The state of Maine politics is currently in a heated partisan gridlock. 2018 is a big year for Maine, and the Senate race could very well be wide open. Angus King won in 2012 with a majority vote likely due to his history as Governor. King may seek to straddle the partisan fence, but it won’t be as easy now that he has a Senate record of voting staunchly liberal. It would be strategic for Democrats to let their ally go uncontested but it seems a further left candidate could divide liberal voters. Zak Ringelstein, is pro medicare for all which is a further sign of the left moving left.

This opens the door for GOP candidate Erick Brakey. Brakey is a State Senator with a solid conservative record and is also a libertarian turned Republican. Brakey would be a solid conservative Senator for Maine to make up for the RINO Susan Collins. This race is early and has the capability of a three way split that favors Brakey the most since King can’t really run on a bipartisan record that appeals to Republicans.

US House – Illinois

Generally speaking, Senate races are almost always more important than House races. However, this Democratic seat looks like it could be upended by a leftist candidate. Rep. Dan Lipinski of Ill-03 is regarded as one of the most conservative Democrats in Congress. He faces a challenger whose pro-abortion and far more anti-Trump. Marrie Newman is a fearsome primary challenger getting loads of support including Daily KosYou don’t often hear about Democrats being primaried for being too moderate or conservative. The ideological splits in the Democrats are sure to increase as they veer towards socialism. This primary looks to be the first battle in a potential intra-party war.

Economy

To those who don’t care about the national debt, consider this

Published

on

To those who dont care about the national debt consider this

The national debt has been growing dramatically for decades. It’s so great that most Americans seem to dismiss it altogether; if we haven’t been harmed by it already, it obviously can’t hurt us, right? This sort of “head in the sand” thinking is why lawmakers refuse to tackle it. As long as the people don’t seem to care, why should they?

It’s time to care. It’s been time to care for a while but the collective ignoring of it has brought it to the level that now, in 2018, we are nearing the point of no return.

Why? Because the astronomical interest is now going to noticeably affect how the government operates. We’ve spent years pretending like the interest isn’t a big deal even though it was growing to unsustainable levels during the Clinton administration. Now, we’re seeing it reach levels that are tangible. Why? Because the cost to cover it is now great enough that other areas are going to need to be cut.

In 2017, the interest on our debt was $263 billion. That’s 6.6% of federal government spending. We’re on track to spend more on interest than Medicaid in 2020 and more on interest than defense by 2023. Let me repeat that:

By 2023, we will spend more in interest on the national debt than we spend on national defense.

Normally, we can take CBO predictions with a grain of salt because they’re usually off (see Obamacare predictions for CBO’s epic failures) but this one relies on simple math. Even in a humming economy with the best case scenarios in play, you can’t overcome interest without paying down the debt.

Neither Democrats nor Republicans have any intention of paying off the debt. This is why candidate Trump went from promising to pay off the national debt in eight years, then ten years, then paying part of it off, then finally proclaiming himself the “king of debt” – all within the period of one month on the campaign trail.

To get the national debt in line will require an ironclad commitment backed by irrevocable legislation that spans two- to four-decades. It means entitlement reform, budget limits, cutting entire agencies and possibly even departments, and commitments to rein in all forms of discretionary spending.

In other words, the only way to get the national debt to a manageable level – not even getting it to zero but somewhere much lower than it is – would require commitments by politicians that none of them are willing to make. Oh, there might be a couple of Senators and a handful of Congressmen who would embrace such measures, but even those ones won’t buck the system to the point that they’d push hard for it without a mandate by voters.

We are the only hope for the very near future. If Americans don’t care that our tax dollars are being used to pay interest on the mountainous debt that has been accumulated in recent years, let alone the debt that preceded it, then we shouldn’t expect politicians to care, either. This can has been kicked down the road for decades, but the road is coming to a very abrupt end soon. It’s beyond unsustainable. We’re on the verge of collapsing under the weight of our own mistakes.

As long as voters ignore the national debt, neither party will pay attention to it, either. We will drown in our own ignorance if we don’t act soon. In the past, they said the debt will affect our children and grandchildren. Now, the debt is starting to affect us.

Continue Reading

Opinions

Orange County didn’t turn blue because of Trump. It turned blue because of fiscal irresponsibility.

Published

on

Orange County didnt turn blue because of Trump It turned blue because of fiscal irresponsibility

The “angry suburban backlash” against President Trump is what many analysts and commentators blame for the reversal in control of the House of Representatives. It’s partially correct, but there’s a bigger challenge for the GOP: red-leaning population centers like Orange County that seem to be shifting blue as well.

The suburbs may have the voters the Republicans need, but heavily populated affluent areas like Orange County have the money Republicans need.

Orange County just went from mostly red to totally blue in the House of Representatives. It has as many or more congressional districts than over half the states in the country. And until this year, four of them could be counted as “leaning-” or “solid-Republican.”

Now, they are all blue.

Democrats Complete Sweep of Orange County, Once a GOP Haven

https://www.rollcall.com/news/politics/democrats-sweep-orange-county-once-a-gop-strongholdWith Democrat Gil Cisneros’ victory in California’s 39th District, Democrats have defeated all four Republicans in Orange County, an area former President Ronald Reagan once referred to as the place “where the good Republicans go before they die.”

Cisneros, a Navy veteran and lottery winner, defeated former GOP state Assemblywoman Young Kim in the increasingly diverse 39th District. He had garnered 50.8 percent of the vote compared to Kim’s 49.2 percent when the Associated Press called the race nearly two weeks after Election Day. He won by roughly 3,500 votes.

This is a bigger deal than most realize and has national implications. It demonstrates two things quite clearly. First, the organizational structures of the party in California and the local area are abysmal. They have been for a while, but Orange County survived their bumbling because the GOP held a favorable fiscal reputation here. Second, President Trump’s influence is limited in areas where higher education and income levels make up the bulk of voters.

Tax cuts weren’t the big winner in places like Orange County because they weren’t accompanied by spending cuts. Fiscal responsibility is more important in areas like Orange County than other Republican strongholds. Local publications lambasted Congress and the White House when they passed spending bills that would make President Obama blush.

In California, we live with a state government that spends incessantly. We don’t want a federal government that does the same.

If the GOP doesn’t start acting like the party that wants lower spending, they have no chance of regaining a foothold in areas that are less concerned about kneeling football players and more concerned about budget deficits and the national debt.

Continue Reading

Guns and Crime

Gun rights activists: Stop acting like we don’t hold every high ground

Published

on

Gun rights activists Stop acting like we don't hold every high ground

Forgive me if I offend any of my fellow gun rights activists. It’s my intention to educate, not irritate. But I’ve become increasingly annoyed by arguments that play into the leftist agenda. We have the high ground. When you have the high ground, you don’t go down to the enemy’s level. We hold the high ground.

We hold the moral high ground. For every mass shooting incident that takes lives, there are dozens of stories that don’t get nearly the same attention but demonstrate how gun owners prevent crimes. They’re out there defending themselves and others from people who would do them harm.

We hold the intellectual high ground. Where do most gun crimes occur? Where gun laws are obtuse. Chicago is the shining example of how obtuse gun laws prevent citizens from defending themselves. How often do we see gun violence in gun free zones?

We hold the historical high ground. The first thing a government does before turning against its people is take away the people’s ability to defend their rights. One of the most common leftist arguments is that Americans have no reason to fear oppression from the government. This is a backwards argument as it has been shown on multiple occasions that the government was hampered from oppressing American citizens because of the presence of weapons. It’s naive to think the government would never try to oppress us. History shows they already have at times and certainly will again in the future.

We hold the constitutional high ground. This needs no explanation.

We hold the emotional high ground. This is hard for most to understand since it’s emotional responses to mass shooting that usually prompt calls for gun control. That’s exactly why we hold the emotional high ground. As long as we remain consistent and stop operating in the leftists’ emotional echo chambers, we can maintain control of the emotional argument. It’s easy for people to be affected by senseless violence, but that’s no reason to ignore common sense or logical discipline.

What gets to me is when gun rights activists start making arguments such as logistics. I cringe every time I see stats about how many AR rifles are owned. The argument that there are so many out there it would be impractical to take them away is ludicrous. It’s like saying, “You may be right to want to take away guns but it would be too hard.”

The push for gun control is gaining momentum. We cannot give the gungrabbers an inch. We don’t need to. Our arguments are righteous. The only way they’ll win is if we let them distract us and bring us down to fighting on their level.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement Donate to NOQ Report

Facebook

Twitter

Trending

Copyright © 2018 NOQ Report