Wednesday, February 16, 2011

We Need a Tea Party Senator, Not Lugar

Recently, a group of Indiana Tea Party leaders wrote a letter to Indiana Senator Dick Lugar asking him not to run for Senate in 2012. He replied with a letter mailed to Indiana voters:

“I am running for reelection because I believe America’s best years are ahead of us. The United States is blessed with God-given advantages that are the envy of the world. We have the benefit of two oceans, a temperate climate, abundant natural resources, and the most productive land.

We also possess numerous advantages that have stemmed from our deep traditions of freedom that are embedded in the Constitution. No other country has benefited more from a devotion to personal achievement, entrepreneurial energy or scientific advancement. Our country has succeeded because Americans have enjoyed the freedom to unleash their personal energy and ingenuity to create a robust economy and a resilient society grounded in liberty.”

These lines remind me of something the Senator might have written before terrorists crossed one of those oceans and killed about 3000 Americans in protest over our personal achievements, entrepreneurial energy and scientific advancement. Is he living in the past; has he forgotten that those advantages have been slowly undermined by the policies of a President that he has done very little to oppose; a President that he boasts of having worked with on a variety of matters? He seems to think that these principles still hold when, in fact, our President is doing everything he can to diminish those values and turn this once-great nation into a “utopia” of re-distribution.

The Senator is telling us is that we should vote for him because he believes that America’s best years are ahead of us. I too believe that America’s best years are ahead of us but I don’t see people beating a path to my door. I’m sure you believe it too but is that a reason that people should vote on an important position such as Senate of the United States?

According to the Senator from Indiana, we should also vote for him because the United States is blessed with God-given advantages. Perhaps that might be a good reason to vote for God but He won't be running. We need men of principle who understand what it takes to create great government and a great economy, men who do not sell their principles to the highest bidder and do not ask for people to vote for them because of America’s natural advantages. We need to vote for good government not natural advantages.

Senator Lugar continues:
“But as we enter 2011, we know that in many critical areas, the country is off course in ways that threaten our security and prosperity. This divergence has grown during the last two years. The Obama administration and the large Democrat majorities in Congress have increased our national debt, multiplied regulations, imposed a disasterous health care bill on the country, and threatened to raise taxes.

Hoosiers and the entire country have struggled with a national economy that is failing to create sufficient jobs and is encumbered by debt. As one of the few federal elected officials who has managed both a small business and a family farm, I can say with certainty that the stated desires of many Democrats to eliminat the Bush era tax cuts would be especially damaging to job creation because raising these taxes would undercut rewards for productive investments and risk taking.

I stood with Republicans in voting against all amendments and final passage of President Obama’s health care bill. I voted against all amendments and final passage of the Obama financial regulation bill. And I opposed the Obama stimulus package.”

Notice, he didn’t say he voted against the Obama stimulus package. You will recall that Senator Lugar voted for the $192B additional "anti-recession" "stimulus" spending bill in July of 2009. You have to ask him why he thought that this bill, in particular, would provide stimulus to our economy when he voted against virtually every other such bill of the administration. Is this a contradiction or a vote that had a specific “reason” such as an earmark? In other words, is the Senator a man of principle or is he a man of expediency? Is he willing to increase government spending if it will help him get re-elected? Could it have something to do with earmarks set aside about that time to help fund the production of lithium-ion batteries in Indiana? Did Senator Lugar sell his vote? Did he not realize that this spending bill would be just as ineffective as all the others and that the long-term damage to Indiana jobs would be the result? Or was he just giving us smoke and mirrors, sliding through his words, hoping that no one would notice the hypocrisy?

I think anyone in the Indiana Tea Party Movement understands that this is not the kind of person we need as a Senater. We need people who will take a stand against government spending and “investment” of the taxpayer’s dollars. We need someone who will not finesse his language by calling his favorite earmark an “investment” in jobs while at the same time calling the administration’s massive spending bills job killers. We need someone who will say “No” to government boondoggles and insist that investors in Indiana companies, even if they are from Russia, invest their own money. We need a Tea Party Senator not an establishment Republican.

We are still waiting for a candidate who understands the basic principles of republican government, who knows the value of the Constitution; a person who can articulate individual rights in such a way that his or her arguments are clear, principled and can be contrasted to the ideas of the coercive, spend-happy progressives. We don’t need a progressive Republican as Indiana Senator.

Certainly, Senator Lugar is a highly intelligent and skilled politician. And that’s the problem. He has no principles. If what you are rebelling against is a generation of smug, out-of-touch professional politicians, then it is time to vote for an amatuer who will not sell us down the river in return for a few precarious jobs that may last a few months...and who then complains about the administration destroying jobs.

We must reduce spending, cut the budget and get rid of massive waste. Lugar’s business-as-usual bi-partisanship will not accomplish these goals. The progressives want compromise, they want the Republicans to give in on the principles that are at the heart of the Tea Parties; the insistence that coercive government must stop, that re-distribution must stop, that inflationary borrowing and spending must stop.

That is how to increase jobs.

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