Friday, August 07, 2015

August 6th Fox News Top Ten Republican Debate

Impressive–Rubio, Bush 
Solid–Walker, Christie, Kasich 
Didn’t help/hurt themselves – Carson, Cruz, Huckabee 
~~Stuart Rothenberg
-I had a great time live tweeting during the debate last night.  It has been 11 years since I've been excited to watch a Republican debate.  There were a lot of great quotes and comments from the candidates and other people tweeting about it.

-I have to admit there are 2 things that "I didn't get" last night.  All this conservative anger that cheers on Trump and trashes Fox News and the Fox News' anchors/moderators.  I find myself at odds with people I used to admire.  As many of my readers know, I used to love Ann Coulter and I've read most of her books.  But she has gone off the rails the past couple of years and her celebration of Trump and trashing other great candidates just doesn't make sense to me.

-I love Megyn Kelly and Bret Baier and 24 million people watched the debate last night.  I thought Trump's comments to Kelly were disrespectful and offensive.

-I was excited that my guy, Marco Rubio shined last night.  Many others agreed with me.  I literally cheered when Rubio said the above quote about God blessing the Republican party.  He came across as optimistic and confident.

-After I saw the above tweet from Dana Perino, I looked up what en fuego means.  Below is the exact description:
Translated from Spanish, literally means, 'on fire'. It's what you call anyone or anything that is awesome. 
-I couldn't think of a better way to describe Marco Rubio.  Below are some more articles praising Rubio's performance:
~~Rubio Wins
~~Mainstream Media surprised by Republican Debate as Rubio, Cruz and Fiorina score
~~Marco Rubio and Carly Fiorina win the Republican debate
-Besides Rubio's stellar performance, I liked Scott Walker and John Kasich last night.  Kasich is getting some traction.  I was a little surprised Walker didn't do better, but like Rothenberg said, he gave a solid performance.  My favorite line was the one about mush.

-Bush did okay, surprised he didn't perform better.

-Carson was funny at the end but seemed lost the rest of the debate.

-Huckabee and Cruz reinforced me cringing every time they talk, can't stand either of them.

-Rand Paul surprised me with some good lines, especially when he called out Christie hugging Obama.  But if I wanted a candidate weak on defense, I'd vote Democrat.

-Trump really made me mad when he attacked Megyn and his response about his women comments wasn't impressive.

-I don't get the support for Trump at all.  He's not a genuine conservative and just seems to be garnering all the angry/hater type people's support.

August 6th Fox News Happy Hour Republican Debate!

Since [Donald Trump] has changed his mind on amnesty, on health care and on abortion, I would just ask, what are the principles by which he will govern?--Carly Fiorina
-The 1st Debate last night, which was dubbed the "Happy Hour Debate" was fairly uneventful except that Carly Fiorina rose to the top of the 7 candidates that didn't make the cut for the "real debate" later that night.

-I have always liked Fiorina but know that she doesn't have much of a shot at the nomination for numerous reasons.  That said, she did a great job last night and was the only candidate of the 7 that did anything for me.

-CNN listed her 5 best lines:
1. "Hillary Clinton lies about Benghazi, she lied about emails, she is still defending Planned Parenthood, and she is still her party's frontrunner."
2. "[T]he potential of this nation and too many Americans is being crushed by the weight, the power, the cost, the complexity, the ineptitude, the corruption of the federal government."
3. "I know more world leaders on the stage today than anyone running, with perhaps the exception of Hillary Clinton."
4. "Since [Donald Trump] has changed his mind on amnesty, on health care and on abortion, I would just ask, what are the principles by which he will govern?"
5. "I didn't get a phone call from Bill Clinton before I jumped in the race ... maybe it's because I hadn't given money to the foundation or donated to his wife's senate race."
-I think Fiorina would make an excellent VP for my favorite candidate, Marco Rubio.  She would also make a great cabinet pick.

-The other candidates didn't impress me at all.  Perry was the only one I liked, but his performance illustrates why he crashed and burned last time around and why he's getting no traction this time.

-Graham, Gilmore and Pataki know they have no chance in hell of winning and must be running to create publicity for themselves.

-Jindal just doesn't come across well at all, he makes me cringe.  Santorum didn't have a chance last time and he sure doesn't this time.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

2016 Presidential Hopefuls--Rankings!

This is the strongest field of Republican candidates in 35 years.--Charles Krauthammer
For the first time since Bush got re-elected in 2004, I am excited about the Republican field of candidates for president.  During 2008 and 2012, I was discouraged because there were no stellar options.

In my previous post on the 2016 candidates, I talked about which ones were my favorites and which ones weren't.  Since then, I have watched most of the interviews done by Sean Hannity and Bret Baier on their shows.  As each candidate officially announced they were running, Hannity and Baier would then have them on their shows for the whole hour.

As much as it pained me, I forced myself to even watch the interviews of people I wasn't a fan of.  It was good and either helped me to see them in a better light or reinforced why I don't like them.

Now that I have more information on each of the candidates, I've decided to rank them.

1st--Senator Marco Rubio--
This is no surprise, since I have already done numerous posts about him.  I think he has everything that he needs to win both the Republican primary and the general election.

This is what I said about him in the last presidential hopefuls post:
I can't think of much that I don't like about him.  As I said in my post yesterday, he is a solid conservative, articulate about his views, a good sense of humor, optimistic, good looking, likeable and charming.

What sets him apart for me is that he is a solid conservative, he is strong when it comes to his foreign policy, and he has an attractive personality.  You don't win the presidency by being a moderate and by being boring, just ask Bob Dole, John McCain and Mitt Romney.
--Hannity's Interview with Rubio
--Bret Baier's Interview

My previous posts on Rubio:
--Marco Rubio Enters the 2016 Presidential Race
--Making the Case for Marco Rubio--Part 1
--Making the Case for Marco Rubio--Part 2

2nd--Governor Scott Walker--
This man is impressive!  He took on the unions in a blue state and won.  He is a solid conservative and has some great experience from being Governor of Wisconsin.  I LOVED his announcement speech.

3rd--Jeb Bush--
I wanted him to run in both 2008 and 2012, because he was a conservative governor and much better than both Romney and McCain.

He's not my first choice because of his recent stances on immigration and common core.  But I'm surprised at how many conservatives are overlooking his other conservative stances.  Especially since some so called conservatives like Trump for his immigration stance when he has recently held many other very liberal positions on a lot of important issues.

4th--Governor John Kasich--
I've loved Kasich since the first time I saw him on a Sunday morning news show years ago.  I think he has been a great governor of Ohio, and he is articulate and persuasive.  I just don't think this election cycle is his time.

5th--Carly Fiorina--
She has guts and she isn't afraid to take on Hillary Clinton.  I have been impressed with how she has run her campaign, and she has actually made a little progress in the polls.  That said, she hasn't ever held elected office and she lost running for senator.  She doesn't have a chance of winning, but she has been a valuable part of the process.

6th--Governor Rick Perry--
He is a good guy, and I had high hopes for him in 2012.  Yet, he gained no traction and stumbled.  We have better options this time around.

7th--Dr. Ben Carson--
He is a great guy, but has never held elected office.

8th--Rick Santorum--
Oh, Rick... I used to really love him and was so disappointed when he lost his senate seat in 2006.  But he has never had what it takes to become president.  He should've been a great option for conservatives in 2012.  On paper he looks good, but in person he just doesn't cut it.  If he didn't give Romney a run for his money in 2012, he certainly won't against some great candidates this time around.

9th--Governor Bobby Jindal--
I remember anticipating his response to Obama's SOTU back in 2009.  To say I was disappointed was an understatement.

10th--Governor Chris Christie--
Initially, I loved Christie, I was so impressed with how real and outspoken he was.  I wanted him to run for president in 2012.  He reminded me of Scott Walker.  Yet, he went down in flames for many conservatives when he decided to cozy up to Obama right before the 2012 election.  That didn't sit well with me, and he's done a couple other things that have revealed some of his liberal stances, nope.

11th--Donald Trump--
I used to like Trump as a person, and I enjoyed watching The Celebrity Apprentice last year.  That said, he is NOT a conservative.  As many have pointed out,  Trump has held numerous liberal positions, like being pro-choice, giving $ to Hillary Clinton and being for government run health care.

He is also no stranger to offensive comments, as Stephen Hayes points out:
Idiotic statements are nothing new to Trump, who called George W. Bush "evil," who has long advanced birther conspiracies about Barack Obama, and who used his announcement speech to suggest that Mexican illegal immigrants are “rapists.” 
Later in his appearance here, Trump was asked directly by an audience member whether he would rule out running as a third party candidate for president. “No, no,” Trump said. “I won’t go on record as saying that.”
There is no love lost between John McCain and I.  Yet, despite that, what Trump said about him and other POWs was beyond the pale.  People have tried to justify what he said and claim it was taken out of context, but I've seen him make all the comments and he essentially spit in the faces of POWs.

Just because he's taken a strong stance on immigration doesn't mean he's even close to being the right guy to run for president.

12th--Lindsey Graham--
I can't believe he thinks he has a prayer.  

13th--Ted Cruz--
On paper, Cruz looks good, but he makes my skin crawl.  I don't know what it is, but I don't like him.  I forced myself to watch his interview with Hannity and wasn't impressed.

14th--Rand Paul--
As I've made clear on this blog, I am NOT a fan of Ron Paul.  I gave Rand a chance because I thought he might be different than his Dad.  There are some differences, but when it comes to national security, he is just as bad as his Dad.  If I wanted someone who was weak on national security, I'd elect a Democrat. 

15th--Mike Huckabee--
The list of why I'm not a Huckabee fan is extremely long.

Twitter Assessment of the Candidates by @ProducerSusan 's non-political husband (amusing and mostly accurate):

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Making the Case for Marco Rubio--Part 2

The more I learn about Marco Rubio, the more I get excited about him and his chances to not only win the Republican primary, but to win the presidency in 2016.

Some articles that I have found recently that help make the case:
-Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio Solidify Front-Runner Status

-Marco Rubio Lights It Up
Have you seen Marco Rubio?  Marco Rubio is lighting it up, and there are two things that have happened here.  The first thing that happened is that Larry Ellison of Oracle, worth something like $57 billion, is throwing a huge fundraiser for Rubio out in California where he lives.

And then Rubio shows up on the Council on Foreign Relations and literally ran rings around everybody, including Jeb Bush.  I read that Jeb Bush's speech and performance, the Q&A at the Council on Foreign Relations was not inspiring. He appeared unprepared, a little halting and unsure of himself, whereas Rubio was conversant on anything that was brought up.  He was able to answer any question that anybody asked him.  His speech was all-inclusive.
-Why Marco Rubio Could Upend 2016
The headline polls may understate Rubio’s advantage. Alone among candidates on either side, he has positive favourability among Republican and Democratic voters. At 57 per cent among Republican primary voters, he is way ahead of Jeb (37 per cent). Although Jeb leads marginally in voters’ first preference, Rubio tops the second-choice rankings. In a fragmented field, that could count for a lot. Finally, Rubio is neck-and-neck with Jeb in the key swing states, including Ohio and Florida, and comes closest of any Republican to defeating Hillary in a head-to-head match-up.
-The story behind a Rubio campaign video that the campaign didn't make

Pic Credit: @MarcoRubio_2016

Some factors that help make the case:
-Twitter is exploding with accounts supporting him.  I have been shocked at the sheer number.  The other candidates probably have some major support too, but there is GENUINE enthusiasm for Rubio that I think is missing for a lot of the other candidates.

-The All-Star Panel on Special Report with Bret Baier considers him to be 1 of the 3 top tier candidates in the Republican race.  Charles Krauthammer is probably his biggest fan.
-Making the Case for Marco Rubio--Part 1
-2016 Republican Presidential Hopefuls

Sunday, June 14, 2015

The Roosevelts: An Intimate History!--A Review (Part 5)

5-The Rising Road (1933-1939)
There have been 3 presidents who were larger than the office they inherited.  One was Washington, who fairly invented the office; there was Lincoln who preserved the country at the center of which sits that office; and then there was Roosevelt, who fundamentally changed the relationship of the citizen to the central government.--George Will
Franklin Roosevelt
-When FDR took office, 15 million were unemployed.  A sense of fear pervaded the country. It was the 3rd year of the crippling depression, and people wondered how long it would last.
-FDR connected with the American people over the radio in his fireside chats.
-He appointed the first woman to a cabinet position.  He appointed Frances Perkins to be Secretary of Labor.
-President Herbert Hoover's mail was handled by only one clerk.  The Roosevelts needed 50.  During the week following FDR's inauguration he received 450,000 letters.
-Most of the American people didn't know that FDR was in wheelchair.  The press wasn't allowed to to take pictures or video FDR in his wheelchair or getting assistance standing and/or getting in and out of vehicles.
The best of the New Deal programs was FDR's smile.  He was armored with Christian faith that the universe is well organized and with the American faith that history is a rising road and things are going to be all right.--George Will
-FDR's critics accused him of bringing socialism to the U.S. with his New Deal programs.
-He was re-elected in 1936 carrying 46 of 48 states and getting 60% of the popular vote.  Many think that the passage of the social security act was what ensured FDR's re-election.
-He became a type of "savior" to the American people.  Many families had his picture on their walls.
-FDR was upset about the conservative members on the supreme court.  They overturned several of his New Deal programs.
-He then arrogantly tried to find a way to change the make-up of the court by introducing legislation that would force justices to retire at age 70.  Even one of his own friends admitted that FDR was trying to pack the court.  The legislation never passed.
-Yet, he was eventually able to pack the court to his liking.  By the time he passed away, he had replaced 8 of the 9 justices.
-The American public was against the U.S. getting involved in World War II.  So, FDR moved very slowly towards what he realized was the inevitable.

Eleanor Roosevelt
-She starts having weekly press conferences of her own.  She only allowed female reporters because only men could attend her husband's.  No previous first lady had ever done anything remotely like this.
-She started writing a syndicated newspaper column called, My Day. She also had a network radio program of her own as well.
-The Roosevelts were more sympathetic to African Americans than their predecessors.  Eleanor even more than FDR fought for them.
-Eleanor had a total of 6 children with Franklin.  One son, Franklin Jr. died in infancy.  Later they had 4 more sons, one of them was also named Franklin Jr., and the others were Elliott (named after Eleanor's father), James and John.  They had one daughter named Anna.
-Even though the Roosevelt's marriage was troubled, they never divorced.  Yet, it seemed to have a big impact on their children.  Between the 5 children that survived, there was a total of 19 marriages.

Episode 1-Get Action (1858-1901)
Episode 2-In the Arena (1901-1910)  

Episode 3-The Fire of Life (1910-1919)
Episode 4-The Storm (1920-1933)

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

A Review of I Am Malala

I was a girl in a land where rifles are fired in celebration of a son, while daughters are hidden away behind a curtain, their role in life simply to prepare food and give birth to children.

I was named after Malalai of Maiwand, the greatest heroine of Afghanistan.--Malala Yousafzai
-I have been impressed with Malala Yousafzai since I first heard about her.  She is an outspoken young woman who grew up in an area where women are supposed to be quiet. 

-Malala has a strong mother, and a father who always encouraged her to speak the truth and to stand up for girls getting an education.  Although her father didn't have much money, he took a lot of risks to start schools in Pakistan to provide an education for many.

-Malala and her father knew that by being outspoken about the rights of people to get an education, they were risking their lives.  The taliban was executing people on a regular basis if they didn't toe the line on women obeying every aspect of sharia law.

-If women in the middle east are ever going to be ushered into the 21st century, they need many more women who are willing to risk their lives like Malala did.  She was shot by the taliban in the head, and yet, survived to carry her message around the world.

-In reading her story, I learned a lot about what life is like in Pakistan & Afghanistan for girls.   I was inspired by her courage, and look forward to seeing what the future has in store for her.  She has already won the Nobel Peace Prize at 17 years old (the youngest ever to receive the award),  so the sky is the limit.

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

The Roosevelts: An Intimate History!--A Review (Part 4)

4-The Storm (1920-1933)
Great suffering can change a person.--Eleanor Roosevelt
Franklin Roosevelt:
-1920 was the first election where women could vote.  James M. Cox was the Democrat nominee for president and he picked Franklin to run as his vice presidential running mate.  They lost to Warren G. Harding & Calvin Coolidge in a landslide.
-Harding appointed Teddy Roosevelt Jr. to be Assistant Secretary to the Navy.
-On August 10, 1921, Franklin felt funny, after this day he would never walk without help again.
-Eleanor and Louie Howe took care of him, and then also hired a nurse.
-He was 39 years old when he was finally diagnosed with polio.
-Eleanor and Sara (Franklin's mother) disagreed on what Franklin should do to get better.
-On October 9, 1922 Franklin went back to work.
-He spent a lot of time away from Eleanor trying to rebuild his legs.  He also ignored his children during this time.
-He thought he could improve his legs & walk again even though his doctors told him it was unlikely.
-During 1925-1928, he would spend 116 weeks away from home trying to fix his legs.
-He and Eleanor were living separate lives, and their children were being ignored and indulged.
-Teddy could outrun his depression demons, but FDR couldn't walk, so he was stuck with them.
-Franklin didn't want the public to know he was crippled.  Yet, it was the polio that gave him the gift of empathy.
-He bought Warm Springs, Georgia and used it as a place for polio patients to recover.
-On June 26, 1924 FDR gave the introduction for Al Smith who was running for president at Madison Square Garden.
-Al Smith persuaded Franklin to run for Governor of New York.  He did, and campaigned in all 62 counties, something no other candidate had ever done before.  Democrats lost big that year, but FDR won the governorship.
29 years earlier Teddy Roosevelt had promised the American people a "square deal".  Now, 11 years after polio seemed to have crushed his political hopes, FDR made a promise of his own, a "new deal".--The Roosevelts
-In 1932, FDR was the front runner for the Democratic nomination for president.  He won against 9 contenders.
-On election night, November 8, 1932 FDR won by 7 million votes.  He won 42 of 48 states, and the Democrats won a majority of seats in both houses of Congress.
The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself.--FDR
Eleanor Roosevelt:
-After finding refuge in work during the war, she refused to give it up after the war, even though her Mother-in-law wanted her too.
-She would always crave action liker her husband and her Uncle.
-In June of 1922, Nancy Cook (from the Women's Division of the state Democrat party), called and asked Eleanor to speak at a fundraising luncheon.  Cook and Marion Dickerman became good friends of Eleanor's.
-Eleanor began organizing the Democratic women of Duchess county.
-Louie Howe not only coached FDR, but also Eleanor and helped her with public speaking.
-She began her own career after FDR was struck with polio.
It is always disagreeable to take a stand, it is always easier to compromise.--Eleanor Roosevelt
-Franklin was proud of Eleanor having her own career.
-After FDR was elected Governor of New York, she toured hospitals and prisons on her husband's behalf and attended political functions.
-When FDR was elected president, she was happy for him, but she was troubled for herself.  She knew this would be the end of any personal life of her own.

Episode 1-Get Action (1858-1901)
Episode 2-In the Arena (1901-1910)  

Episode 3-The Fire of Life (1910-1919)

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Making the Case for Marco Rubio--Part 1

Recently, I did a brief post on the Republicans who are likely to run for president in 2016.  I expressed how I really like Governor Scott Walker, but Marco Rubio is the guy that has me most excited. 

As I continue to follow the race, I let out a BIG groan when I saw that Huckabee is going to make his announcement about getting into the race on May 5th.  I thought he was smart enough not to run this time, so much for wishful thinking.  Yet, despite his high hopes, I think that Cruz, Paul and Huckabee will all be fighting for the fringe vote.

Meanwhile, I have discovered some articles that make the case for Rubio and thought I would do a rundown of them:
-Marco Rubio leads GOP field in new national poll

-The Talented Mr. Rubio
David Brooks makes the case for Rubio and has a lot of great points.  Below are just a few excerpts:
Along comes Senator Marco Rubio of Florida. Rubio, 43, doesn’t just speak in the ardent patriotic tones common to the children of immigrants like himself. His very life is the embodiment of the American dream: parents who tended bar and worked at Kmart with a son who rose to become a United States senator. His heritage demonstrates that the American dream is open to all who come here legally and work hard. He is what many Republicans want their country to be.

1-He is, for starters, the most talented politician in the race.  In most primary battles, the crown goes to the most talented plausible candidate.
2- Rubio gives a very good speech.
3- He has an upbeat and pleasant demeanor. 
4-He has a great personal story. 
5-His policy agenda is more detailed and creative than any of his rivals. 
6-He has an overarching argument — that it is time for a new generation to reform and replace archaic structures.

Can Rubio win a general election? Well, he believes more in expanding the party than in just mobilizing the base. In his past races, he’s done better than generic Republican candidates because of his success with Hispanics. Youth is America’s oldest tradition. Who’s to say that voters won’t side for the relative outsider over the know-what-you’re-getting Hillary Clinton?
-The GOP Racing Form: First Edition
Charles Krauthammer loves Rubio as much as I do, and puts him in the top tier of candidates.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

The Conscience of a Conservative (A Review)

Thus, for the American Conservative, there is no difficulty in identifying the day's overriding political challenge: it is to preserve and extend freedom.  As he surveys the various attitudes and institutions and laws that currently prevail in America, many questions will occur to him, but the Conservative's first concern will always be: Are we maximizing freedom?--Barry Goldwater
I've heard a lot about Barry Goldwater, but had never taken the time to read much about him.  During my study of the civil rights movement in the 50's and 60's, Goldwater's name came up.  Some accused him of voting against the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and thus being against civil rights for African-Americans.

I did some research.  While researching, I came across his short book that I knew outlined the conservative movement.  I decided to read, Conscience of a Conservative and find out for myself his stance on civil rights.

While he did vote against the Civil Rights Act of 1964, he wasn't a racist nor was he against African-Americans having civil rights.  Yet, I found his view on this lacking in compassion.

He argued in Chapter 4, that the Federal government shouldn't be involved in forcing states to abide by civil rights' laws.  But in the next chapter, he argues for federal legislation to "fix" the problem with farmers getting subsidies.

Why was it okay to push for new federal laws for farming, but not for the much more important issue of civil rights?  While studying the civil rights' movement, I was shocked at how racist some of the southern governors were.  There is no way African-Americans would've been treated equally in the south had they not be forced to by the federal government.

Yet, for the most part, I agreed with the rest of what he laid out in the book.  Below I will list the Chapters and a short description of them.  It is amazing how this book was written 55 years ago, and yet most of it still applies today.

Chapter 1--The Conscience of a Conservative
Chapter 2--The Perils of Power
Chapter 3--State's Rights
Chapter 4--And Civil Rights 
I've already addressed this issue.
Chapter 5--Freedom for the Farmer
Not much has changed on this issue in the past 55 years.  Most Republican Representatives are against subsidies for farmers (or anyone for that matter), but farmers make up a big percentage of conservative voters.  Thus, the representative continues to support farm subsidies to keep his constituents happy.
Chapter 6--Freedom for Labor
Goldwater was spot on in describing the problems with Unions, we are still having the same problems, although they have been weakened in some states like Wisconsin.
Chapter 7--Taxes and Spending
This too, of course, is the same today except the numbers have gotten drastically larger.
Chapter 8--The Welfare State
Again, the same today, except the number of people dependent has risen sharply.  We have implemented some reforms, but not even close to enough.
Chapter 9--Some Notes on Education
Chapter 10--The Soviet Menace
While the Soviet Union no longer exists, and the Cold War has been won, Goldwater's views on how to deal with them could be applied to today's War on Terror.

I highly recommend this book for all conservatives.  Goldwater is said to be The Most Consequential Loser in American Politics.  I think that is true.  Goldwater influenced Reagan (who had a lot more charisma), and Reagan ended up being able to apply a lot of Goldwater's principles and make the Republican party more conservative.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

2016 Republican Presidential Hopefuls

As I said in my Rubio post, it is nice to finally have some good options this time around.  When I looked at the field of candidates in 2008 & 2012, it left me depressed.

This year we have some great picks, and as always some less appealing ones as well.  I will admit that my assessment of some of these is more of a gut check reaction.  Yet, I have found my gut to be pretty reliable.

1) My Favorites
Senator Marco Rubio--
I can't think of much that I don't like about him.  As I said in my post yesterday, he is a solid conservative, articulate about his views, a good sense of humor, optimistic, good looking, likeable and charming.

What sets him apart for me is that he is a solid conservative, he is strong when it comes to his foreign policy, and he has an attractive personality.  You don't win the presidency by being a moderate and by being boring, just ask Bob Dole, John McCain and Mitt Romney.

My only concern about Rubio is he doesn't have a ton of experience.

Governor Scott Walker--
Walker isn't as likeable as Rubio, but he does have an incredible track record and some great experience.  Who else has taken on the Unions and not only survived, but came out stronger?  He not only survived a recall election, but then won a second term.

He too is a solid conservative and a great governor.  A long time ago I thought Chris Christie was the same type of guy, but he turned out to be way too liberal.  Walker is a tough guy and a conservative, I like that A LOT!!

2) Acceptable Candidates
Governor John Kasich--
It isn't clear that Kasich is going to get in the race, and I'm not sure how much of a chance he has, but I have always really liked him.  He has great governor experience in the swing state of Ohio.  He is a fairly solid conservative.

Governor Mike Pence--
I love this guy, but don't think he will run.

Governor Jeb Bush--
I have always loved Jeb, even apart from him being W's brother.  But he is definitely too moderate for me.  That said, I wouldn't freak out if he ends up being the nominee.

3) People that I like, but don't think they have a chance
Dr. Ben Carson
Governor Bobby Jindal
Governor Rick Perry
Rick Santorum 
Carly Fiorina
Donald Trump--
He says he is seriously considering it this time.  He is a great businessman, and would do a much better job of running things than Hillary, but I don't see how he gets the conservative vote.

4) Not a Fan
Rand Paul--
He has several strikes against him.  He is Ron Paul's son, most of you know how I feel about Ron Paul.  I tried to give him a chance, but he is weak on foreign policy.  If you are going to be weak on foreign policy, we might as well have a Democrat in office.

Ted Cruz--
This is definitely a gut check problem for me, there is something about him that I just don't like.  Apparently, he is very popular among Evangelicals, well, not with this Evangelical he's not.  I watched his interview with Hannity after he announced he was getting in, and he didn't impress me at all.  I guess you could call it the Huckabee Syndrome--where a candidate makes your skin crawl.  I also don't think he has a prayer of getting the nomination.

Mike Huckabee--
I have been extremely open about my lack of support for both Ron Paul and Mike Huckabee on this blog.  I don't think Huckabee has a prayer of getting the nomination and would be shocked if he ran this time around.

Chris Christie--
When I first started learning about him, I was a big fan.  He stood up to the teacher's union and he reminded me of Rudy Giuliani.  But it wasn't long before he got cozy with Obama and did several other things that showed he was way too liberal.