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Beware journalists turning conservatives into a circular firing squad

Beware journalists turning conservatives into a circular firing squad

The hot news today was a story at National Journal about how the Romney campaign supposedly was Declaring Cease Fire on Health Care:

In the aftermath of the Supreme Court health care ruling, the early conventional wisdom was that an unfavorable health care ruling at the court would be good for Republicans politically, even as it was a serious policy setback for conservatives.  But that’s not shaping up to be the case.  Mitt Romney, after giving a brief statement decrying the decision, has been virtually silent on criticizing the health care law.  He’s been on vacation and his campaign has been giving off clear signals that it doesn’t want to make health care a major part of the election….

For an issue that’s supposedly potent against Democrats, Romney’s campaign is declaring a cease fire. This, even as the law polls unfavorably and it proved to be a motivating force for Republicans and disaffected independents in the 2010 midterms.

It’s becoming clear that Romney has decided to focus on the economy at the expense of everything else, even issues that could play to his political benefit….

Needless to say, the headline and verbiage inflamed many on the right side, but when I read the article, it looked like very little fact reporting and a lot of conclusions.

The “declaring a ceasefire” language was that of the author, not the Romney campaign, and the embedded hyperlink where those words appeared was to a Washington Post article about how Romney supposedly “sided” with Obama about whether the mandate was a tax (see my post yesterday).

The Romney campaign is denying any ceasefire, via Byron York:

So is the Romney campaign, in fact, declaring a “cease-fire” on Obamacare?  No, no, no, says Romney spokesman Ryan Williams.  “From our perspective, Obamacare has been and will continue to be a central issue in the campaign,” says Williams.  “It presents voters with a bright line that divides the two candidates.  Gov. Romney is going to repeal Obamacare and President Obama is going to keep it. There is a clear choice in November.”

I have been pretty strong in my criticism of the Obamacare decision, and during the primaries was pretty harsh on what Romneycare might mean for the general election.

But we don’t need concern trolling journalists sowing discord on the right.  Don’t let them turn us into a circular firing squad.


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The Romney campaign may not be declaring a (formal) ceasefire, but they’ve ceded too much to Ogabi. Fine, I’ll still support Romney, lesser of two evils, BUT, it’s time to hold all the GOP congresscritters and wannabes, feet to the fire. Last chance. Support your constituancy, or face either more primary challenges, or a third party. Your choice.

Color me, red. Smokin’ hot and ready.

ObamaCare IS the economy.

It is an economy killer. Like that planet eater in the old Star Trek. All by itself, it could kill a healthy economy…which we ain’t got, BTW.

Some idiot I read in MotherFlucking Jones chirped that the taxes…and he noted there were many…in ObamaCare would fall mostly on corporations and the well-to-do. He was too vacant to get that this means that the middle-class and low income consumers will tend to pay them as part of the price of goods and services, and that this will all mean fewer jobs as American stuff gets priced out of competitiveness.

THEN there is the fact that this is mathematically simply suicidal. As Steyn has noted, there is not enough money in the whole world to pay for our commitments.

The messaging needs to be simple, stark, and consistent. We are screwed if we do not reverse ObamaCare AND the national flirtation with the welfare state.

Conservatives do not do lock-step messaging nearly as well as the Collectivist. In some respects, that is a good thing.

But here, the messaging needs to be uniform, powerful, and crystal clear.

    jimzinsocal in reply to Ragspierre. | July 3, 2012 at 7:12 pm

    Good points about the economic impact of the taxes and other costs contained in Obamacare. Hopefully Romney can point those out as time goes on and after he has listened to folks that suggest he better have a rational, easy to understand alternative to sell to voters. Lowry at NRO makes the same suggestion FWIW.
    As Ive said many times..simply calling for “repeal” isnt enough. Voters are approaching the sort of mindset those of us in the financial sector are experiencing..we call it “Euro fatigue”. Romney has to keep any Obamacare discussion simple and direct.
    Voters arent interested in a short course on Commerce Clause jurisprudence thru the years…unless you like to see glazed over eyes.
    Another point is we Republicans in examining the recent ruling need to be careful we dont pick up on the left’s promised campaign to diminish the Court or the justices. That was their plan for a bad ruling. It doesnt have to be ours after we accept the cards weve been dealt.

      BannedbytheGuardian in reply to jimzinsocal. | July 3, 2012 at 9:25 pm

      Check out the naked ninja zombie in Indianapolis over at Breitbart. Whoah.

      But other than that I agree with you 2. It is about the $$$ but this guy demonstrates just how difficult it is going to be to wrest control back.

      Valerie in the previous thread suggest ‘conservatives’ cannot do it alone. You only have 4 months .

      Quite the Waterloo where the Prussians only came over the hill to outflank Napoleon when the gold had been assured.

Republicans don’t need journalists to turn them into a circular firing squad. They’re perfectly capable of doing it themselves and have proven it over and over.

    Karen Sacandy in reply to creeper. | July 4, 2012 at 4:18 am

    Yes, just like the good professor last week criticizing Santorum out of the blue. The man worked harder in the race than anyone else, and he’s out there working for candidates all over the place, but Professor Jacobson being unaware of that, just unloaded on him.

    Our enemies criticize our allies enough. If we are going to criticize our allies, it should be thoughtful, considered, and not merely arising from personal animus. Though with Spector, I always made an exception. ;^)))

Henry Hawkins | July 3, 2012 at 7:53 pm

Romney doing his best to solidify his more conservative base, I see.


Yeah I read both articles and was wondering where this “cease-fire” came from. And I agree with creeper, we don’t need journalists, I’ve got plenty of ammo and a happy trigger finger!

For example we should be demanding Romney hit a little harder on things like Fast and Furious, Solyndra et al, leaks, as well as taxes and the economy.

To a greater extent than I had expected, in order to defeat Obama conservatives have proven willing to set aside their differences with each other and with RINOs.

In the SCOTUS aftermath, the main problem is not concern trolling by leftist journalists; it is the lack of a prompt and forceful response from the presumptive nominee.

I’m not suggesting that the circular firing squad divert its fire to the nominee, but denial does more harm than good. The Romney campaign is not handling this well.

    Team Romney is not handling this well. Is it Obamatax or Obamapenalty? Why not attack Obama on F&F? What’s the deal on immigration?

    They need to get it together.

It’s the old Soviet trick: disinformation. Sow confusion and disorder through phony “facts.”

It shows two things.
1. They realize Obamacare is a HUGE vulnerability.
2. They’re sweating.

But it should be perfectly clear by now that actual conservatives ARE Romney’s target.

They don’t like us. In fact, they loathe us. They would get rid of “conservative, religious hicks” in a heartbeat if they could.

    creeper in reply to WarEagle82. | July 3, 2012 at 8:51 pm

    What about us conservative atheists? Do we get off scott free?

    It’s tough being both. The general assumption is that all conservatives are hard-rock Christians. I’m living proof that’s not the case.

    Balance the damn budget and get the hell out of my bedroom, Washington. That goes for both parties.

      Henry Hawkins in reply to creeper. | July 3, 2012 at 10:01 pm

      Two atheist myths: (1) that conservatism and atheism are mutually exclusive, and (2) that the in-the-media, in yer-face atheists out there knocking down Christmas decorations, shooting elves, and clearing government property of anything religious are representative of all or most atheists.

      Two atheist truths: (1) that the same philosophy of thought that leads to atheism also supports and cn lead easily to conservatism, and (2)that most atheists are not at all activist, care not a whit about public religious displays, and want nothing more than to live and let live. To judge “all atheists” by the atheist activists is like judging all African Americans by the New Black Panther Party or all white people by the KKK.

      So, you are not alone, creeper. I’m a conservative. I’m not an atheist exactly, but I worship no God. I AM God*.


      I am atheist, agnostic, however folks might wish to label me, for two very simple, basic reasons: (1) I was not indoctrinated with any religious belief as a child, and (2) I’ve never observed or experienced anything that could only be explained by the existence of God, the 1969 NY Mets notwithstanding.

      WarEagle82 in reply to creeper. | July 3, 2012 at 10:48 pm

      No, atheists don’t get off “scott free.” Establish Republicans hate you too, but I have found that much of the establishment GOP has a special disdain and contempt for Christians.

Consider: l feel the left as represented by its media is experiancing a form of ‘penis envy.’ Up thru 3 years ago the left mindset thought of themselves as the cock of the walk. At that time everywhere they looked they finally saw the triumph of their 70 year effort. They saw that their agenda could finally show its superiority, When opposition cropped up they both ignored & mocked it. As time passed , reality with a lugwrench took more & more of the lugnuts off. More & more wheels come off. The contradictions & shallowness of their agenda & programs were exposed. Now they find themselves on the outside looking in. They are incapable of back & forth discussion because their minds are stunted through conformity to dogma. They are dull & boring. Their audiance & numbers are melting. How can one be hip when it is apparent you are stupid. Even if they somehow cheat out a win it is clear to all they are liars , corrupt & frauds. 3 years of effort have stuck.

romney not really able to defend against the very attack most pf us said he would not be able to defend himself against.
who knew.
I see more complaints about higher costs, longer waits in MA since romneycare was started (largely funded by ALL us taxpayers through medicaid) and he still won’t own up to it being bad.
friends of mine down there in airline business hated it, and he is proud of it.
its his Achilles tendon and its just been sliced.
he needs to get with all the other candidates right NOW and formulate a scorched earth attack and he needs to destroy obama with prejudice at EVERY opportunity.

Where is Mitt Roberts — I mean, Romney?

And is he still running for president, or is he hiding out under a bed somewhere, next to John Boehner?

Last one to run out of (other people’s) bullets wins?

Yea, I’ve been seeing it for the last two days.
“Romney is going to do squat…he’s waffling.”


Ask yourself-who are these people that are trying to convince you that maybe that vote for Romney could be all for not?

Staunch conservatives?
Libs sowing seeds of doubt?

No matter.

I’ll march down to my precinct and whole heartedly vote for Romney, anyone with an “R”, and against any libtard measure on the ballot.

And be grateful that the Almighty allowed me enough time on this Earth to do so.

stevewhitemd | July 3, 2012 at 9:58 pm

Patience, everyone.

This is not a circular firing squad. This is a loyal member of the MSM and Democratic Party (but I repeat myself) spreading FUD.

You see, the Democrats always tell you what they’re afraid of. In this case they’re afraid of being necklaced by Obamacare and the fact that now everyone knows it’s a tax, the largest middle-class tax in our history.

They have to persuade Romney to get away from that somehow. Hence this article.

I’m not worried. Romney has made clear in his ‘Day One’ ads that repealing Obamacare is what he wants to do on day one. I take him at his word.

The economy is issue number one. Obamacare is issue number one-A. They work hand in glove for Mittens (how that for a metaphor?).

So I don’t see Mitt being dissuaded from going after Obamacare. The key is to go at it the right way. Emphasize the tax, how it was jammed down our throats, the tax, how the Democrats disregarded the American people, the tax, etc. Don’t let the Democrats try to deflect the issue by talking about insuring ‘children’ to age 26, etc., stick to the tax.

I think the Romney campaign is smart enough to see this. I think.

Don’t overestimate the Romney campaigns’ smarts, especially in light of Eric Fehrnstrom putting his foot in his mouth — yet again — and the likes of Jack Welsh and Rupert Murdoch scratching their heads about the amateurishness of the people running it.

BannedbytheGuardian | July 3, 2012 at 11:00 pm

How much does anyone know about Masscare? It is still the case that the OCA is modelled on Mass & that the designer was consulted for OCA.

I can understand the logic that this is a state issue but I have read whereby a hospital in Martha’s Vineyard received rural status & thus receives federal funds to maintain /attract staff. Martha’s Vineyard ? Poor ? Isolated ?

It is a risky strategy to have Masscare in your camp whilst you fly a freedom banner & rail against taxation /mandate /penalty meanings.

Anybody care to explain ?


    Your snippy, British, smug little attitude towards Americans is wearing thin.

    Your “Empire” crumbled at the hand of peasant “colonialists” the world over-

      BannedbytheGuardian in reply to Browndog. | July 4, 2012 at 12:41 am

      I disagree . History shows that Britain immediately went on to bigger & better things. Thats the thing about battles -you have to know when to withdraw when to attack etc. I would consider both America & The British Empire to be the big success stories of modern history.

      The British Empire did not crumble but re organised post WW2 . Almost all were granted independence & indeed some eg Zimbabwe might be better as a colony. Plus Mozambique & Ruanda actually asked to join up.

      Besides my point is that the medical industry will like Obamacare for it gives them more access to federal funds eg my example. They have no high principles & will play their best cards first & that is not their customers necessarily.

      Example one -The Catholic Bishops were salivating at the $$$ until they got punked.

      Yeah Boston has a public health Scheme & they learnt it from their letters to England.

Plenty of correspondence from Massachusetts to your former King that may or may not explain away your confusion, dude.

    BannedbytheGuardian in reply to Browndog. | July 4, 2012 at 12:48 am

    Plenty of Americans on the Guardian & Telegraph websites with plenty of advice. Why so snippy?

      stevewhitemd in reply to BannedbytheGuardian. | July 4, 2012 at 1:07 pm

      I’m one of those who comment occasionally at the Guardian (I am the lone voice of reason there :-), so I’m sure you’re welcome here.

      What I like about the Guardian is that it is not afraid to tell you just how left they are.

      Of course, the problem with the Guardian is how left it is.

      But do understand that when you poke American conservatives with a sharp stick, we respond with facts, logic, reason and really, really biting humor. Be prepared.

BannedbytheGuardian | July 4, 2012 at 1:48 am

BTW I just went over to the Tele to seean article ..”Mitt Romney struggles with Obamacare. Problem ”

It goes on to say pretty much what I stated & MCleo above.

99 replies of which about 40% are American. Many also with my pov.

So tell me I am so uninformed & don’t understand Americans.

What circular firing squad? We saw this coming YEARS ago! This is completely Romney’s fault. It would be so simple for the contentiousness to end. All Romney has to do is to:

1) Come out and CALL THE INDIVIDUAL MANDATE A TAX! (which he hasn’t done) and

3) Reveal in specific in detail what he means by “Replace”.

OF COURSE, the MSM is all over this. WE were all over this years ago!

The GOP just stuffed the very architect (and primary lobbyist to Obama) of ObamaCare. Why is it so hard for Republicans to admit that it was a mistake? It’s 2008 all over again when they stuffed Kennedy Republican and architect of amnesty Juan McCain right after voters punished Republicans for pushing hard for amnesty in 2006.

What many “conservatives” are learning (yet again) is that there is no intellectual nor political traction in trying to meld “Republican” with “conservative”. The GOP is hopelessly the Assistant Democratic Party. The Stupid Party doubling down on stupid.