- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 12, 2009

BY THE NUMBERS

Republicans have moved ahead of Democrats by 48 percent to 44 percent among registered voters in the latest update on Gallup’s generic congressional ballot for the 2010 House elections, after trailing by 6 points in July and 2 points last month, the polling firm said Wednesday at Gallup.com.

The Nov. 5-8 update comes just after Republican victories in the New Jersey and Virginia gubernatorial elections, which saw Republicans replace Democrats as governors of those states.

As was the case in the recent gubernatorial elections, independents are helping the Republicans’ cause. In the latest poll, independent registered voters favor the Republican candidate by 52 percent to 30 percent. Both parties maintain similar loyalty from their bases, with 91 percent of Democratic registered voters preferring the Democratic candidate and 93 percent of Republican voters preferring the Republican.

Over the course of the year, independents’ preference for the Republican candidate in their districts has grown, from a 1-point advantage in July to the current 22-point gap, Gallup said.

PELOSI’S ‘WIN’

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi scored a giant gain for feminism last weekend,” Camille Paglia writes at Salon.com.

“In shoving her controversy-plagued health care reform bill to victory by a paper-thin margin, she conclusively demonstrated that a woman can be just as gritty, ruthless and arm-twisting in pursuing her agenda as anyone in the long line of fabled male speakers before her. Even a basic feminist shibboleth like abortion rights became just another card for Pelosi to deal and swap,” Ms. Paglia said.

“It was a stunningly impressive recovery for someone who seemed to be coming apart at the seams last summer, when a sputtering, rattled Pelosi struggled to deal with the nationwide insurgency of town hall protesters - reputable, concerned citizens whom she outrageously tried to tar as Nazis. Whether or not her bill survives in the Senate is immaterial: Pelosi’s hard-won, trench-warfare win sets a new standard for U.S. women politicians and is certainly well beyond anything the posturing but ineffectual Hillary Clinton has ever achieved.

“As for the actual content of the House health care bill, horrors! Where to begin? That there are serious deficiencies and injustices in the U.S. health care system has been obvious for decades. To bring the poor and vulnerable into the fold has been a high ideal and an urgent goal for most Democrats. But this rigid, intrusive and grotesquely expensive bill is a nightmare.

“Holy Hygeia, why can’t my fellow Democrats see that the creation of another huge, inefficient federal bureaucracy would slow and disrupt the delivery of basic health care and subject us all to a labyrinthine mass of incompetent, unaccountable petty dictators? Massively expanding the number of health care consumers without making due provision for the production of more health care providers means that we’re hurtling toward a staggering logjam of de facto rationing.”

GREEN & GREED

“Last spring Tennessee Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn asked Al Gore during a House hearing if his investments in green energy meant he would benefit personally from cap and trade,” Wall Street Journal columnist Holman W. Jenkins Jr. writes.

“‘If you believe that the reason I have been working on this issue for 30 years is because of greed, you don’t know me,’ Mr. Gore responded (and, yes, according to two reporters present, he sighed).

“Mr. Gore is quite right that his arguments should be judged on their merits, not on his investments. He’s wrong to think his investments are irrelevant, and, even more, that sincerity is dispositive of anything. Sincerity is no substitute for disinterestedness,” Mr. Jenkins said.

“Here are a couple questions: When so much of his position and prestige are invested in a predicted climate crisis, is Mr. Gore likely to be open to contrary evidence? Is he likely to be particularly fastidious about whether proposed steps will actually have an effect on global warming if they also happen to benefit his investments?

“Ms. Blackburn’s challenge was in a sense late. Mr. Gore long ago jumped over to the side, where salesmanship, by whatever means, was the trumping priority. As far back as 1989, he insisted there was ‘no dispute worthy of recognition’ about the danger of manmade climate change. By now, he titularly heads a vast establishment with a stake in one side of the argument.

“Notice, for instance, after a decade in which the earth appears to have stopped warming and even cooled, that global warming advocates have rushed to embrace a computer simulation that predicts this cooling (in retrospect, of course) and allows for indefinite future cooling, even while assuring that the world is destined to face disastrous warming anyway. Isn’t this what forecasters of doom have done since time immemorial when their deadlines for doom haven’t been met?”

‘SAVING’ FACE?

“First it was the Associated Press refuting the Obama administration’s claims for jobs saved or created nationwide by February’s $787 billion economic stimulus measure. Then it was the Sacramento Bee refuting the claims that state agencies had made for California. Then it was the Chicago Tribune refuting the claims that state agencies had made for Illinois,” the San Diego Union-Tribune said Wednesday in an editorial.

“The errors were not of a minor or technical nature. They were egregious,” the newspaper said.

“AP reported that ‘some jobs credited to the stimulus program were counted two, three, four or even more times.’ The Bee reported that California State University said ‘the $268.5 million it received in stimulus funding through October allowed it to retain 26,156 employees’ - more than half its statewide work force. The Tribune reported that Illinois education officials grossly inflated job-saved numbers, sometimes saying school districts had saved more jobs than their total number of employees.

“This is a scandal and should be treated as such. It’s not government as usual. Instead, it appears to reflect a decision to distort government data collection to support explicitly political agendas.

“With U.S. unemployment now topping 10 percent, the Obama administration is struggling more than ever to fashion credible counterarguments to the assertion made by this editorial page and many pundits and economists that the massive stimulus measure was a poorly thought-out pork fest that wouldn’t work. What’s the easiest way to defend the stimulus? Make up claims about its glorious results.”

Greg Pierce can be reached at 202/636-3285 or gpierce@washingtontimes.com.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide