Monday, April 25, 2005

Republican Primary For Governor : WinnRock or Asa

By Mark Moore (click "comments" below for article or to comment).

21 Comments:

Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

So who is ahead in the Republican Primary race for Governor, and who should be?

Though both men have excellent resumes, both also have important weaknesses in the conservative base.

In Asa Hutchinson's case, the most glaring trouble spot is his abysmal record on illegal immigration. Though it should not mean so much in a race for state office, the issue has become too explosive to ignore. Asa was in charge of securing our borders at the Department of "Homeland Security". His section did a really lousy job of stopping illegals from Mexico from swarming into this country.

That could be blamed on his boss, President Bush. It is clear that the President, for reasons unknown, wants an open borders policy and favors amnesty for illegal aliens(though he won't call it that). But Asa has not given any hint to the public that he was only following orders. Besides, if the orders are detrimental to our country, wouldn't resigning be the patriotic thing to do? Easy for me to say I know.

Asa could have enhanced his credibility with conservatives by taking a public stand against HB1525 (education benefits for illegal aliens). He choose to remain silent. He could have backed SB206 which would have codified Arizona's proposition 200 (denying some public benefits to illegal aliens). He again declined, leaving the heavy lifting to others.

Recently he asked to be in a photo op with the Minute Man project, which has had so much success in Arizona. Sources say that when he learned that he would need to actually endorse the project to get the photo op, he declined. He will not get to straddle both sides of the fence on this one, and the longer he tries the worse it will be for him.

Clearly, Asa has trouble on the right with the borders issue. He has some stratigic troubles as well. He has been out of state a long time. His opponent has been right here, networking. Asa has a job out of state, his opponent does not need a job, but the job he has is one whose duties are identical to the duties of a person who is campaigning for office. Asa may not be able to use his leftover campaign funds from his Federal races in a battle for a state position. His opponent has a massive finnacial advantage.

Despite all that, Winn Rockefeller may have even bigger troubles. Notwithstanding his alledged recent claims to the contrary, the Lt. Governor appears to favor abortion. As far as we know he has never used one ounce of his vast politcal capital to stand up for any pro-life legislation. He has never given an impassioned, or even reasoned, speech where he defends or advances the pro-life position. "We are the party of life" is the only quote I can find from him that even comes close, and that only vaugely describes his party's position, not his own. After 35 years of unrelenting support, pro-lifers have a right to expect a lot more from their candidates.

Here is the clincher. The Rockefellers once hosted a Planned Parenthood fundraiser in their home. That alone shows that he is so far away from the mindset of the typical Arkansas Republican as to be scary. Has he ever held, or even appeared, at an Arkansas Right to Life fundraiser? Even if he has an election year conversion of questionable sincerity (yes I do question it)a few mumbled pro-life bromides is not enough to put the questions to rest.

That brings us to another issue. The Lt. Governor does not EVER seem to be in the front lines fighting for conservative causes. He does not seem to spend political capital on any conservative cause- only on building good feelings about himself. He never spoke against any of the big spending sprees in state government. He neve spoke against the courts in the Lakeview mess, or any other mess. The only conservative stand we have ever seen him take is on gun issues- that is as safe as safe can be in Arkansas and says nothing about him as a person who will fight for conservative ideals.

I think it is very clear that he WON'T fight for conservative ideals. He hasn't and he won't change now.

So what is the answer for conservatives in the Governor's race? You tell me. I am not yet convinced that there is one.

9:05 PM, April 25, 2005  
Blogger The Partisan Arkansan said...

You right On both points , Im not saying your wrong but I would like more info on that planed parent hood claim. but on Rockefeller he did stand with Jim Holt I know he Had to he was the leader of the state Party , but he still did it rember when Huckabee wouldnt even acknowlege there was a senate race Rockefeller did throw a few jabs for Jim , on Asa it always worries me when guys go to Washington and come back Im afraid they might contract that washington syndrome , on my front down here in little river county where Republicans are out numbered 10 to 1 Rockefeller would fare better his father has a long history down here in Winthrop he kicked off all his campaigns down here and even brought johnny cash once people havent forgotten and still talk about it 35 years later

9:47 PM, April 25, 2005  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

WinnRock did the minimum for Holt that he had to do to avoid critisim of himself. If you will read between the lines of his speech at his lone appearance at Holt HQ you will see that is true. He basically told republicans that they did not have to give Jim money, that he did not need money, he would do it with hard work. Rockefeller then practiced what he preached by refusing all requests from Holt for money.

At least Mike Huckabee did a fundraiser for Holt. It was true that it just got him to "even" because of his earlier comments about how well he worked with Blanche Lincoln.

Both of those guys left Holt to twist in the wind. They only sent the minimal signals they had to send to avoid crisim and be able to say "but I supported him". Its duplicitous hogwash.

6:13 AM, April 26, 2005  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

The bottom line on Asa and WinRock is that both of them want to be the leaders of conservatives, but neither of them has done any leading for years. They let others take the media heat for advancing the conservative agenda. They keep silent when we need our leaders to speak up. Then elction time rolls around and they put themselves forward as "leaders". Where have they been when the battles were raging in the legislative session we just had? Where have they been while the battle rages to protect our borders?

6:17 AM, April 26, 2005  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

Bear in mind I am not saying Asa is better than WinnRock. I am not endorsing either of them and reject the idea that I "must" choose one. If a given party does not put up a candidate worth backing then I am not obligated to back them.

Sure Winthrop got votes by bringing in Johhny Cash 35 years ago. It is pitiful when people vote for someone just because he brought in a performer to entertain them. That is how a people with conservative values keep getting hoodwinked into electing big government liberals to rule them.

If they vote for WinnRock because his daddy threw them a concert 35 years ago instead of his position on the issues then they sold their vote cheap. It scares me to hear that a lot of my fellow citizens are so easily manipulated.

6:23 AM, April 26, 2005  
Blogger The Partisan Arkansan said...

It is sad That down here who ever throws the biggest party gets the most votes , Clinton knew it , bumpers knew it , and even Huckabee Knows it , who ever will come to sw arkansas more than once spend some money , give some free food they have the sw cornor locked up its sad , but its the way the game is played , On the other hand you think Huckabee will endorse either of them or just be quit until the dust settles

12:01 PM, April 26, 2005  
Anonymous DeDonnerPass said...

These two do present significant problems for conservatives in our state. Neither one turns on my burners. Isn't there anyone else who could be persuaded to run for governor? What is Mike H. going to do? Move to DC?

4:11 PM, April 26, 2005  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

I think Mike Huckabee will work behind the scenes for Rockefeller, but not openly. There was some tension between the Huckabee and Hutchinson factions a few years back. Each wanted to wear the mantle of leadership for religious conservatives in Arkansas. In my view, later events proved that neither side deserved that mantle- even though both were great improvements over the Clinton Crime Machine.

Mike Huckabee has national aspirations, and I think aiding Rockefeller on the sly will help him with the East Coast Republicans.

6:34 PM, April 26, 2005  
Blogger Mark West said...

ASA

8:55 AM, April 30, 2005  
Blogger nwagolfer said...

You guys aren't the sharpest tools in the shed, are you? Partisan Arkansan, you don't need to make any comments about consolidation because your grammar indicates you didn't get a fair education, regardless of where you received it.

As for Win, Asa, or Huckabee standing up with Jim Holt - why should they? Holt has done nothing since being elected. He is an ethically challenged, race baiting, unemployed legislator who can turn out the vote in a small election. Holt's small group of committed supporters helped him narrowly make it into the 2000 primary run-off and then he out worked his opponent in the run-off; he narrowly defeated a democrat in overwhelmingly Republican Springdale in the 2002 general election; and, finally, he beat Andy Lee, the de-frocked former sheriff who didn't really run a campaign in the GOP primary. He hasn't given the party, it leaders, or statewide organization a reason to stand up for him.

8:17 PM, May 01, 2005  
Blogger nwagolfer said...

As for the Republican Primary for Governor - both candidates are better options than what the democrats are offering. This LEAD program is a nice marketing idea, but it is empty promises.

8:50 PM, May 01, 2005  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

Hey NWA golfer, why do you say Jim Holt is "ethically challenged"? The guy is as clean as they come.

How is Jim Holt a race baiter? Isn't it possible to oppose ILLEGAL ALIENS entering our country without being a racist? What has the man done that would indicate he is a racist? BEING OPPOSSED TO ILLEGAL ALIENS DOES NOT COUNT IN ITSELF AS RACE BAITING. If it did, it would be impossible to have a responsible discussion on the issue.

I also don't see how he is "unemployed". The State Senate is at least a pretty big part time job, right? Depending on the committees that one is on, it could even be a fairly robust full time job. Isn't Holt on one of those committees that meets all the time?

You make it sound like he can only turn out the vote in a small election. The 2004 election was the biggest turnout in Arkansas History and he got 44% despite being outspent 70-1, getting virtually no help from the GOP establishment, and being savaged in the state's slimey print media for months. I think Holt actually got more votes than Mark Pryor did in his winning senate campaign. How is that a guy who can only turn out the vote in a small election? If he had only been outspent 10-1 by Blanche Lincoln he would likely be in DC as a Senator right now, but the party did not back him.

Andy Lee ran as strong a campaign as he could, it was just that Holt outclassed him. 30% of the Republican Primary vote statewide has traditionally been from Benton County. Andy Lee was hoping to win big there and stay close everywhwere else. After all, I don't think Lee ever lost an election in Benton County- until Holt blew him out.

You also claim Holt has "done nothing" since being elected. Do you call straight A's from the NRA, a 100% Pro-Life Voting Record from Arkansas Right to Life, and a "top five" rating from the Eagle Forum "nothing"? How about the fact that he was the sole senater sponsor of the bill that mandated financial transparancy in Political Party finances? That bill exposed a lot of missing money in the state GOP. So did the FEC investigation. Some may not count that as a plus, but if corruption or incompentence is in there then it is best to expose it. He was also insturmental in getting the former Senate Chamberlin out for various irregularities. Being a corruption-fighter does make one some enemies, but the go along to get along types have gotten us in a big mess.

For a conservative, "getting things done" is often best described by what bills one is able to STOP, not what new laws one is able to pass. If Holt has not done enough here it is only because there are not more like him, not because he has failed. He was the lead force in stopping HB 1525 (education benefits for illegal aliens).

Your grammer may be fine, but the substance of your statements is lacking, to put it mildly.

9:59 PM, May 01, 2005  
Blogger Mr. Toast said...

Actually, his grammar isn't all that good either:

...you don't need to make any comments about consolidation because your grammar...

He hasn't given the party, it leaders, or...

Perhaps he should double-check his syntax before childishly criticizing others for theirs.
How typical that a dissenting poster would resort to ad hominem attacks rather than effectively wielding facts; I've become accustomed to that from empty-hat liberals-- Republican or Democrat in stripe.

Now..
...according to establishment pols and media elites, Holt was supposed to get blown out of the water during last year's primary. Then it was going to be a slaughter in the general election. Oh, and he wasn't even supposed to win his state senate seat to begin with!

They have yet to accurately call just one of his elections!

The truth of the matter is, the 'commoners' relate with Holt much more than they do with the likes of the kool-aid drinking party hacks like nwagolfer. You just go on wasting good money by betting against Holt; you won't be hurting my feelings.

4:46 PM, May 02, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Received request for early donations from both Hutchinson and Rockefeller.

Neither even touched on the issue of illegals.

19th Generation

9:34 AM, May 08, 2005  
Anonymous Maumelle03 said...

Since his departure from Homeland Security, Asa has been outspoken on immigration. he went on the Dave Elswick show and spent an entire hour taking phone calls on immigration. He also testified before congress against a work visa program until we have successfully closed our borders. He has come out publicly against Huckabee's bill to give college scholarship's to illegals. what more does he have to do. Win is for Huckabee's bill and has never talked about immigration ... EVER. the choice is clear. ASA over flip flop Rock.

2:25 PM, May 24, 2005  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

We are glad to have your input, and I hope you are right, but it really does not mean much that he spent an hour on the Elswick show taking phone calls on illegal immigration. The callers were the ones driving the agenda of that show, along with Elswick.

I missed the part where Asa came out against M. Huckabee's plan to give scholarship money and tution breaks to illegals. Did he do it after the vote in the state senate had already been taken? That is hardly a profile in courage.

I know he did not lift a finger to help SB 206 by Holt, which would have undone Huckabee's bill, among other things.

What more does he have to do? To be better than Rockefeller, not much. Few have avoided "combat" to the extent Rockefeller has. But to fire up the conservative base into actually working for him, he has to do a lot more.

A lot of people I know are just sickened by Washington's seeming deliberate effort to destroy our borders. Issuing a few belated press releases that take marginal stands is not going to erase the fact that he was in charge of border security during the debacle.

9:53 PM, May 24, 2005  
Anonymous Maumelle03 said...

He did come out against the scholarship bill long before the bill came up for a vote. What should he have done for Holt's bill besides speak for it - he's not in the Senate and has no official role. Why strain yourself to find problems with Asa when there are so many with Rockefeller and Beebe.

11:23 AM, May 25, 2005  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

Let's just say I know more than I care to type on this forum. I really need to ask a man some questions before I elaborate.

11:48 PM, May 25, 2005  
Anonymous maumelle03 said...

Another public Asa statement just last week.

BY DENA BUNIS
The Orange County Register


WASHINGTON - (KRT) - Sen. Dianne Feinstein said Tuesday she opposes the kind of sweeping immigration reform being contemplated in Congress this year and plans to introduce her own measure that would provide a path to legalization only for longtime undocumented agriculture workers.

Feinstein, D-Calif., said any new guest worker program - even one that required employees to eventually return to their home country - would be a "magnet for illegal immigration" and something she could not support.

"There are plenty of workers here who will work legally if given the opportunity to do it," Feinstein said. "And I think the first step should be taken in the one industry that most assuredly needs it."

Under Feinstein's idea, which hasn't yet been finalized, longtime agricultural workers would get a "blue card," allowing them to continue to work in agriculture. After a period of years of continued agricultural work, they would be entitled to trade their blue card in for a green card.

Feinstein's comments came in an interview after the immigration and terrorism subcommittees held a hearing Tuesday afternoon on the border security implications of immigration policy.

She said she could not support the bill introduced last week by Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., that would also give the 10 million to 12 million illegal immigrants in the United States now as well as future guest workers a path to legalization.

Her comments highlight the split in Congress and on the immigration panel between those who want to put tougher border security measures in place and those who want to see sweeping reform.

At the hearing, Asa Hutchinson, a former under secretary of homeland security, urged the panel to first put workable border security and workplace enforcement systems in place and then consider a guest worker program.

A prerequisite for a new worker program, Hutchinson said, must be the need to "satisfy the American public that we are capable of securing our borders."

Hutchinson said people in other countries have to believe they would have a two-thirds chance of being caught if they tried to enter the United States illegally, a deterrent that is not the case now.

And, he said, they have to believe they will be detained. Now the majority of those caught at the border end up being allowed to stay in the United States while their deportation cases are being adjudicated.

Sen. John Cornyn, chairman of the immigration subcommittee, believes in a comprehensive solution.

"Our history has been to approach this in a fragmented and piecemeal way that rather than solving problems creates two or three other ones," Cornyn said after the hearing.

"I don't think an industry-specific program addresses those concerns," Cornyn said, referring to Feinstein's approach.

Feinstein did suggest at the hearing that senators look into raising the number of immigrants who can come into the country legally each year.

Cornyn went a step further and said after the hearing that the mechanics of immigration also need to be reviewed.

"I think we need to find a way to make legal immigration and legal entry into the country easier," Cornyn said, adding that he believes many people who enter the country illegally do so because they get frustrated with trying to enter through legal channels.

---

© 2005, The Orange County Register (Santa Ana, Calif.).

Visit the Register on the World Wide Web at http://www.ocregister.com

4:07 PM, May 26, 2005  
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