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Rally for Romney: Conservatives need to act now, before it is too late.
National Review Online ^ | January 31, 2008 | Mark R. Levin

Posted on 01/31/2008 10:37:41 AM PST by Delacon

I have spent nearly four decades in the conservative movement — from precinct worker to the Reagan White House. I campaigned for Reagan in 1976 and 1980. I served in several top positions during the Reagan administration, including chief of staff to Attorney General Edwin Meese. I have been an active conservative when conservatism was not in high favor.

I remember in 1976, as a 19-year-old in Pennsylvania working the polls for Reagan against the sitting Republican president, Gerald Ford, I was demeaned for supporting a candidate who was said to be an extremist B-actor who couldn’t win a general election, and opposing a sitting president. And at the time Reagan wasn’t even on the ballot in Pennsylvania because he decided to focus his limited resources on other states. I tried to convince voter after voter to write-in Reagan’s name on the ballot. In the end, Reagan received about five percent of the Republican vote as a write-in candidate.

Of course, Reagan lost the nomination to Ford by the narrowest of margins. Ford went on to lose to a little-known ex-governor from Georgia, Jimmy Carter. But the Reagan Revolution became stronger, not weaker, as a result. And the rest is history.

I don’t pretend to speak for President Reagan or all conservatives. I speak for myself. But I watched the Republican debate last night, which was held at the Reagan library, and I have to say that I fear a McCain candidacy. He would be an exceedingly poor choice as the Republican nominee for president.

Let’s get the largely unspoken part of this out the way first. McCain is an intemperate, stubborn individual, much like Hillary Clinton. These are not good qualities to have in a president. As I watched him last night, I could see his personal contempt for Mitt Romney roiling under the surface. And why? Because Romney ran campaign ads that challenged McCain’s record? Is this the first campaign in which an opponent has run ads questioning another candidate’s record? That’s par for the course. To the best of my knowledge, Romney’s ads have not been personal. He has not even mentioned the Keating-Five to counter McCain's cheap shots. But the same cannot be said of McCain’s comments about Romney.

Last night McCain, who is the putative frontrunner, resorted to a barrage of personal assaults on Romney that reflect more on the man making them than the target of the attacks. McCain now has a habit of describing Romney as a “manager for profit” and someone who has “laid-off” people, implying that Romney is both unpatriotic and uncaring. Moreover, he complains that Romney is using his “millions” or “fortune” to underwrite his campaign. This is a crass appeal to class warfare. McCain is extremely wealthy through marriage. Romney has never denigrated McCain for his wealth or the manner in which he acquired it. Evidently Romney’s character doesn’t let him to cross certain boundaries of decorum and decency, but McCain’s does. And what of managing for profit? When did free enterprise become evil? This is liberal pablum which, once again, could have been uttered by Hillary Clinton.

And there is the open secret of McCain losing control of his temper and behaving in a highly inappropriate fashion with prominent Republicans, including Thad Cochran, John Cornyn, Strom Thurmond, Donald Rumsfeld, Bradley Smith, and a list of others. Does anyone honestly believe that the Clintons or the Democrat party would give McCain a pass on this kind of behavior?


As for McCain “the straight-talker,” how can anyone explain his abrupt about-face on two of his signature issues: immigration and tax cuts? As everyone knows, McCain led the battle not once but twice against the border-security-first approach to illegal immigration as co-author of the McCain-Kennedy bill. He disparaged the motives of the millions of people who objected to his legislation. He fought all amendments that would limit the general amnesty provisions of the bill. This controversy raged for weeks. Only now he says he’s gotten the message. Yet, when asked last night if he would sign the McCain-Kennedy bill as president, he dissembles, arguing that it’s a hypothetical question. Last Sunday on Meet the Press, he said he would sign the bill. There’s nothing straight about this talk. Now, I understand that politicians tap dance during the course of a campaign, but this was a defining moment for McCain. And another defining moment was his very public opposition to the Bush tax cuts in 2001 and 2003. He was the media’s favorite Republican in opposition to Bush. At the time his primary reason for opposing the cuts was because they favored the rich (and, by the way, they did not). Now he says he opposed them because they weren’t accompanied by spending cuts. That’s simply not correct.


Even worse than denying his own record, McCain is flatly lying about Romney’s position on Iraq. As has been discussed for nearly a week now, Romney did not support a specific date to withdraw our forces from Iraq. The evidence is irrefutable. And it’s also irrefutable that McCain is abusing the English language (Romney’s statements) the way Bill Clinton did in front of a grand jury. The problem is that once called on it by everyone from the New York Times to me, he obstinately refuses to admit the truth. So, last night, he lied about it again. This isn’t open to interpretation. But it does give us a window into who he is.


Of course, it’s one thing to overlook one or two issues where a candidate seeking the Republican nomination as a conservative might depart from conservative orthodoxy. But in McCain’s case, adherence is the exception to the rule — McCain-Feingold (restrictions on political speech), McCain-Kennedy (amnesty for illegal aliens), McCain-Kennedy-Edwards (trial lawyers’ bill of rights), McCain-Lieberman (global warming legislation), Gang of 14 (obstructing change to the filibuster rule for judicial nominations), the Bush tax cuts, and so forth. This is a record any liberal Democrat would proudly run on. Are we to overlook this record when selecting a Republican nominee to carry our message in the general election?


But what about his national security record? It’s a mixed bag. McCain is rightly credited with being an early voice for changing tactics in Iraq. He was a vocal supporter of the surge, even when many were not. But he does not have a record of being a vocal advocate for defense spending when Bill Clinton was slashing it. And he has been on the wrong side of the debate on homeland security. He supports closing Guantanamo Bay, which would result in granting an array of constitutional protections to al-Qaeda detainees, and limiting legitimate interrogation techniques that have, in fact, saved American lives. Combined with his (past) de-emphasis on border-security, I think it’s fair to say that McCain’s positions are more in line with the ACLU than most conservatives.


Why recite this record? Well, if conservatives don’t act now to stop McCain, he will become the Republican nominee and he will lose the general election. He is simply flawed on too many levels. He is a Republican Hillary Clinton in many ways. Many McCain supporters insist he is the only Republican who can beat Hillary Clinton or Barak Obama. And they point to certain polls. The polls are meaningless this far from November. Six months ago, the polls had Rudy winning the Republican nomination. In October 1980, the polls had Jimmy Carter defeating Ronald Reagan. This is no more than spin.

But wouldn’t the prospect of a Clinton or Obama presidency drive enough of the grassroots to the polls for McCain? It wasn’t enough to motivate the base to vote in November 2006 to stop Nancy Pelosi from becoming speaker or the Democrats from taking Congress. My sense is it won’t be enough to carry McCain to victory, either. And McCain has done more to build animus among the people whose votes he will need than Denny Hastert or Bill Frist. And there won’t be enough Democrats voting for McCain to offset the electorate McCain has alienated (and is likely to continue to alienate, as best as I can tell).

McCain has not won overwhelming pluralities, let alone majorities, in any of the primaries. A thirty-six-percent win in Florida doesn’t make a juggernaut. But the liberal media are promoting him now as the presumptive nominee. More and more establishment Republican officials are jumping on McCain’s bandwagon — the latest being Arnold Schwarzenegger, who has all but destroyed California’s Republican party.

Let’s face it, none of the candidates are perfect. They never are. But McCain is the least perfect of the viable candidates. The only one left standing who can honestly be said to share most of our conservative principles is Mitt Romney. I say this as someone who has not been an active Romney supporter. If conservatives don’t unite behind Romney at this stage, and become vocal in their support for him, then they will get McCain as their Republican nominee and probably a Democrat president. And in either case, we will have a deeply flawed president.

Mark Levin, a former senior Reagan Justice Department official, is a nationally syndicated radio-talk-show host.

TOPICS: Editorial; Politics/Elections; US: Virginia
KEYWORDS: 2008; elections; hillarylite; marklevin; mccain; primaries; romney
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To: DoughtyOne

History does not have to repeat itself, and people change. You would throw away a gamble in exchange for a sure loss?

It’s like people are being handed a 50-dollar casino coin, and told they can put it in the slot machine if they want. And some people are saying, “Well, there’s a good chance I’ll lose if I put it in the machine, so here, have it back”.

121 posted on 01/31/2008 11:33:01 AM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: Zevonismymuse

You met them. Oh okay, that erases everything he’s done over the last five years. Whew... I can vote for him now. /s

122 posted on 01/31/2008 11:33:25 AM PST by DoughtyOne (PARTY WANTED: Full Time, Cons exp a must. Refs 20 yrs. No Amnesty sptrs. 1 vote per 4 yrs negotiable)
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To: Antoninus

You don’t need a theory, Mark listed his objections in the article. If you have an argument against it, why not post it, instead of changing the subject?

123 posted on 01/31/2008 11:33:45 AM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: Petronski
hemlock and cyanide.

LOL. Like that one.
124 posted on 01/31/2008 11:34:29 AM PST by papasmurf
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To: CharlesWayneCT

Charles, I’m not voting for a RINO. Period! That should make it clear what my thoughts are on each of the current candidates.

125 posted on 01/31/2008 11:34:57 AM PST by DoughtyOne (PARTY WANTED: Full Time, Cons exp a must. Refs 20 yrs. No Amnesty sptrs. 1 vote per 4 yrs negotiable)
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To: Delacon

Sorry Mark,

You list plenty of reasons to not vote for McCrazy, but NO reason to vote for Mutt Romney!

Huckabilly is a poor candidate that would likely lose but even He is better than Romney!

126 posted on 01/31/2008 11:36:28 AM PST by Beagle8U (FreeRepublic -- One stop shopping ....... Its the Conservative Super WalMart for news .)
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To: Petronski

“The problem with this article—and I have great respect for the author—is that a similar litany of awfulness could easily be assembled to describe Slick Willard.”

Here are a few that were posted this AM at MSDNC. Romney is extremely smart, but I have little faith that he is anything more than a fair-weather conservative. And I don’t like the feeling that gives me.

No matter how much he spends Mitt can’t fun from his record. He is not honest and he is a conservative only in presidenbtial elections.

Abortion rights

“I will preserve and protect a woman’s right to choose and am devoted and dedicated to honoring my word in that regard.”
Boston Herald Debate, 10/29/02

“Roe v. Wade continues to work its destructive logic throughout our society This can’t continue.”
Speech to the Massachusetts Citizens For Life Mother’s Day Pioneer Valley Dinner, 5/10/07

Immigration reform

“With these 11 million people [here illegally], let’s have them registered, know who they are....those that are here paying taxes and not taking government benefits should begin a process towards application for citizenship.”
Lowell Sun, 3/30/06

“One simple rule: no amnesty.If that [Kennedy-McCain bill] is not a form of amnesty, I don’t know what is.”
New York Times, 6/4/07

Gun laws

“We do have tough gun laws in Massachusetts; I support them. I won’t chip away at them; I believe they protect us and provide for our safety.”
Romney in 2002 gov. debate, Boston Globe, 1/14/07

“I have a gun of my own. I go hunting myself. I’m a member of the NRA and believe firmly in the right to bear arms.”
Boston Globe, 1/14/07

Amendment to ban gay marriage

“Mitt does not support it...As far as Mitt is concerned, it goes farther than current law, and therefore it’s unnecessary.”
Romney spokesman, Boston Globe, 3/22/02

“When I was Governor, we took every conceivable step within the law to stop, block or slow down this unprecedented court decision.”
Speech to National Right to Life Convention, 6/15/07

“No new taxes” pledge

“I’m not intending to, at this stage, sign a document which would prevent me from being able to look specifically at the revenue needs of the commonwealth”
Associated Press, 3/27/02

“Signing the pledge now sends a very clear message to those in Washington who have voted against tax relief and for tax hikes that such actions will never grow our regional and national economies.”
Romney spokesman, Boston Globe, 1/5/07

Minimum wage

“I think the minimum wage ought to keep pace with inflation. I think the minimum wage is a good thing to have in our economy and I think it ought to be updated.”
Boston Globe, 10/17/94

“[T]he challenge with raising the minimum wage excessively is it is a hurt to those that are entering the work force, the very poor, those that are trying to get early jobs, get those first jobs.”
Associated Press, 7/25/06

Cutting Social Security

“I don’t think you go back and rewrite the contract the government has with people who’ve retired.”
Boston Globe, 10/17/94

“Personal accounts would be a big plus.”... [Romney]also said changing the retirement age could be considered, as well as basing the Social Security cost of living adjustment on a different inflation gauge.
Union Leader, 6/7/07

Adoption non-discrimination

Governor Mitt Romney and a legislative leader yesterday delivered unwelcome news to the Catholic bishops of Massachusetts, who plan to seek permission from the state to exclude gay and lesbian parents from adopting children through its social service agencies. The governor said he was not authorized to give such an exemption...
Boston Globe, 2/17/06

“And then another slide along the slippery slope. The Catholic Church was forced to end its adoption service, which was crucial in helping the state find homes for some of our most difficult to place children... Now, even religious freedom was being trumped by the new-found ‘right’ of gay marriage.”
Speech to National Right to Life Convention, 6/15/07

Stem cell research

[Romney]endorsed embryonic stem cell research, saying the controversial science might one day help treat his wife’s multiple sclerosis....”I am in favor of stem cell research. I will work and fight for stem cell research. I’d be happy to talk to [President Bush] about this, though I don’t know if I could budge him an inch.”
Boston Globe, 6/14/02

“FACT: Governor Romney Opposes Using Taxpayer Money to Fund Embryo-Destructive Research.” A Record of Protecting Life

Bush tax cuts

Governor Mitt Romney refused yesterday to endorse tax cuts at the heart of President Bush’s economic program...In addition to refusing to endorse the president’s tax cut, the governor surprised several people at the meeting by saying he is open to a federal increase in gas taxes.
Boston Globe, 4/11/0

[Romney] said it was “absolutely critical” to renew tax cuts proposed by President George W. Bush. Letting them expire would result in a “massive tax increase” that would retard economic growth, Romney said.
Detroit Free Press, 2/8/07

Reagan Republicanism

“I was an independent during the time of Reagan-Bush. I’m not trying to return to Reagan-Bush.”
Boston Herald, 10/27/94

“Ronald Reagan is ... my hero. ... I believe that our party’s ascendancy began with Ronald Reagan’s brand of visionary and courageous leadership.”
Boston Globe, 1/19/07

Desire to serve in Vietnam

“I was not planning on signing up for the military. It was not my desire to go off and serve in Vietnam...”
Boston Herald, 5/2/94

“I longed in many respects to actually be in Vietnam and be representing our country there and in some ways it was frustrating not to feel like I was there as part of the troops that were fighting in Vietnam.”
Boston Globe, 6/24/07

Peter from NH (Sent Thursday, January 31, 2008 7:13 AM)

127 posted on 01/31/2008 11:36:54 AM PST by freespirited (Still a proud member of the Stupid Party. It beats the Evil Party any day of the week.)
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To: claudiustg

Excellent. How many?

128 posted on 01/31/2008 11:36:57 AM PST by redgirlinabluestate (Unite 4 Mitt --- Stop McCain)
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To: CharlesWayneCT

Charles, if Romney(D) was running, would you cross party lines to vote for him with his record?

129 posted on 01/31/2008 11:37:12 AM PST by DoughtyOne (PARTY WANTED: Full Time, Cons exp a must. Refs 20 yrs. No Amnesty sptrs. 1 vote per 4 yrs negotiable)
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To: BoBToMatoE
I dont get it either - especially since we are talking about a man who claimed to be to the left of Ted Kennedy on abortion, gun control and gay rights

If you believe that, no wonder you don't get it. Romney NEVER claimed to be to the left of Ted Kennedy on ANYTHING.

He WAS never to the left of Ted Kennedy on ANYTHING.

And his positions on all those issues now is mainstream conservative.

I don't get why people would allow someone who we KNOW opposes us to get elected because someone else who promises to be with us on every issue USED TO BE against us.

"yes, I know my boat is sinking because it has holes in it. But your boat used to have holes, and I'm not sure if you patched them very well, so I'll just stay in my sinking boat, rather than take a chance on your floating boat".

If Hunter was put in Romney's position, with Romney's speeches, campaign promises, debates, and appearances, we'd have overwhelming support.

It's time to put the past behind us. We have ONE candidate running on a solid conservative platform. Don't reject the platform to spite the messenger.

130 posted on 01/31/2008 11:37:23 AM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: Cecily
I am already not planning to renew my NR subscription, and I have had it for many years. In terms of true conservatism, it is becoming a pointless magazine. The Romney cheerleading and endorsement are two cases in point. I can read Mark Steyn online, and if I feel the need to check out NR, I will do it at the library for free.

Me too. After this election cycle, I'm done with NR and with several radio hosts I used to listen to regularly.
131 posted on 01/31/2008 11:37:41 AM PST by Antoninus ("Make all the promises you have to." --Flip Romney)
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To: Shadow44


132 posted on 01/31/2008 11:37:56 AM PST by Mister Politics (
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To: DoughtyOne
Romney: State run healthcare - done - False, It's private insurance, and it was crafted with the help of the Heritage Foundation.

Romney: State funded abortions under the plan - done- Imposed by the Mass. courts

Romney: Liberal court appointments - done- Some were better than others, yet Romney is endorsed by Robert Bork, Jay Sekulow, Mark Levin, etc.

Romney: Reasoned gun control - done - - What gun laws did he actually champion? Anyway, if that's what Mass. wanted then fine, it's their guns. That's Federalism!

Romney: Support for homosexual marriage - done- Romney Supports Federal Marriage Amendment.

Romney: Change the marriage license form from 'Husband and Wife' to "Party 1 and Party 2" - done I don't know whether this is true, but if it is, is it really the reason you would rather have Hillary Clinton as president?

133 posted on 01/31/2008 11:38:18 AM PST by americanophile
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To: jan in Colorado

Is no one listening to talk radio?

I just don’t get why there is so much support for someone who has already run his campaign into a deficit, what more can he do for the country than he’s had the opportunity to do while in the senate for the last 20 years or so?

134 posted on 01/31/2008 11:39:10 AM PST by Apple Blossom (...around here, city hall is something of a between meals snack.)
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To: greyfoxx39; Delacon; JRochelle; colorcountry; ejonesie22; Graybeard58

Is this the hillary clinton/barack obama fan club ping list?

Or the “let’s destroy the country to punish the republicans” fan club?

Or the “if I stomp my feet enough, will a real conservative magically appear on my ballot” fan club?

135 posted on 01/31/2008 11:39:28 AM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: CharlesWayneCT

“You don’t need a theory, Mark listed his objections in the article. If you have an argument against it, why not post it, instead of changing the subject?”

It’s interesting, isn’t it? They kinda sound like McCain in the debate last night. Just saying the same thing over and over and over.......not really addressing the questions.

136 posted on 01/31/2008 11:39:28 AM PST by Minn. 4 Bush
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To: Delacon

I sent this email out to all of my family!

137 posted on 01/31/2008 11:39:46 AM PST by JFC (I am now a MITTEN)
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To: Delacon
Should we bring these to the rally?

138 posted on 01/31/2008 11:39:58 AM PST by Arcy
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To: Delacon
It was my honor and pleasure to cast my vote for Fred during the Iowa caucuses.

I don't envy the rest of you one little bit.

All I can say is I would NOT cast a vote for McCain anytime in the lifetime of this universe.


139 posted on 01/31/2008 11:40:02 AM PST by HeartlandOfAmerica (Don't blame me - I'm a FredHead!)
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To: lady lawyer
Yet, some here persist in trying to demonize him.

Yeah, sorta like a "scortched earth" policy. Which is why I am afraid we will wind up with the greater of two evils -- Obamarama or The Beast. Probably The Beast.

140 posted on 01/31/2008 11:40:12 AM PST by dashing doofus (Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber)
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