Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Highlights of coverage of Roskam appointment to Chief Deputy Whip post

Here's a collection of excerpts from various media regarding the naming of Rep. Peter Roskam (R-IL) to the post of Chief Majority Whip in the 112th Congress:

"Rep. Peter Roskam was named chief deputy majority whip of the incoming GOP-controlled House on Monday. The Wheaton Republican will rank fourth among House Republican leaders, giving Illinois a voice at the upper levels of the party’s hierarchy." Crain's Chicago Business, November 29, 2010.

"Mr. Roskam is positioned to be a go-between with the White House for the House GOP leadership. He and President Barack Obama served together in the Illinois Senate and collaborated in Springfield on issues such as death penalty reform." Crain's Chicago Business, November 29, 2010.

"A staunch conservative, he has nonetheless developed a reputation for reaching across the aisle including working with President Obama on death penalty reform while they served together in the state Senate. More recently, at a meeting with the House Republican Conference in January, Obama agreed with Roskam that advancing the South Korea free trade agreement is critical to expanding markets for American manufacturers." Daily Herald, November 29, 2010.

"US Congressman Peter Roskam is adding a new job title to his resume. He is slated to become a republican leader in the newly elected Congress. Roskam is taking the title of chief deputy majority whip so he will be the highest ranking appointed Republican leader. Only Congressman John Boehner, Eric Cantor and Kevin McCarthy rank higher in leadership." ABC 7 Chicago, November 29, 2010.

"[T]his isn't Roskam's first foray into leadership politics. He had a leading role in America Speaking Out, the online grass roots initiative that helped Republicans develop the Pledge to America, the GOP’s agenda document." Politico, November 29, 2010.

"Republicans will try to position Roskam as a go-between, of sorts, with President Barack Obama. The two served together in the Illinois Senate, and Roskam has sought to remind Washington that the president legislative with Republicans as a young legislator in Springfield." Politico, November 29, 2010.

Roskam's elevation to deputy whip could put him on a fast-track for higher leadership positions in the future," and "Roskam could help the GOP better reach out to President Obama: He served with the president when he was an Illinois state senator and is one of the few House Republicans who has a personal relationship with Obama." The Hill, November 29, 2010.

And now a Chicago video mash-up:

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Pure Michigan's winter campaign will be cancelled

The Great Lakes State's Pure Michigan marketing campaign has been generally regarded as a successful one. In fact, they've even changed its "Welcome to Michigan" signs to incorporate the theme. Last year, Forbes Magazine ranked it among its top 10 tourism of campaigns of all time.

Michigan has cold winters. Cold means snow, which brings downhill skiers to the hillier parts of the state, and cross country skiers to the flatter regions. Tourism means money, of which there is not a lot of in Michigan.

The state legislature slashed funds from this fall's Pure Michigan campaign, which is targeted to residents in states such as Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio. There were fewer autumn ads, and the Detroit Free Press is reporting that the winter campaign--the ski lift if you prefer, will be cancelled, barring a drastic turn of events.

Spring and fall Pure Michigan efforts are in peril, too.

But  Pure Michigan worked for me, as you will read below.

Governor-elect Rick Snyder, a Republican, wants to restore the funding as soon as possible.

Related post:

Marathon Pundit Series: Upper Peninsula Upventure

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Dems governing by focus group

Governing by focus group? The Democrats will never learn.

From the Senate Republican Communication Center:

Senate Dems Bring “Focus-Group And Polling Data” Instead Of Economic Data To Yet Another Conference Meeting On Tax Hikes

SENATE REPUBLICAN LEADER MITCH MCCONNELL: “Let’s Get Something Straight. Millions Of Out-Of-Work Americans Don’t Want A Message. They Want A Job. Millions of struggling families trying to make ends meet don’t need the Democrat messaging to improve; they need the economy to improve. Selling bad economic policy to the American people is not an acceptable alternative to creating an environment that will put people back to work and help spur the economy.” (Sen. McConnell, Floor Remarks, 11/30/10)

“Focus-Group And Polling Data” Basis For Dem Tax Hikes

“Schumer Didn’t Grab That Figure Out Of Thin Air. It Had Been The Basis Of Intense Debate Among Democrats For Weeks Before The Election, With Focus-Group And Polling Data Suggesting That It Was The Party’s Best Middle Ground.” (“Man In The Middle,” National Journal, 11/27/10)

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): New Plan Is A “Clearer” Message That “Unites Our Base”

“At $250,000, [Schumer] Said, The Message Is ‘Too Muddled. It's Much Clearer At $1 Million. It Unites Our Base…’” “Schumer said the higher threshold also would make it far more difficult for Republicans to say no. ‘There's a strong view in the caucus that if we make the dividing line $1 million, it becomes a very simple argument: We are for giving the middle class a tax break; they're for tax cuts for millionaires,’ Schumer said Sunday. At $250,000, he said, the message is ‘too muddled. It's much clearer at $1 million. It unites our base and the independent voters we lost in this election.’” (“Democrats Push Obama On Tax-Cut Compromise,” The Washington Post, 11/29/10)

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Euro protests: France, Greece, Ireland...Latvia

In addition to the protests against government cutbacks in France, Greece, and Ireland, you can add Mrs. Marathon Pundit's Latvia to the league of the angry.

According to the Baltic Times, protesters waived signs reading "No to austerity!", "Yes to growth!", and "Will the banks also pay for the crisis?"

Just 200 people attended the rally, but it was held outside the cabinet minister's building in Riga in a driving snowstorm.

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Senate votes to continue ObamaCare 1099 nonsense

"And it was inevitable that some of these people pushed back..."
Ray Bradbury, The Martian Chronicles.

A majority in the Senate still does not get it. Americans are furious about government overreach.

The vengeance will belong to voters in 2012 and beyond.

From The Hill:
The Senate on Monday night defeated two amendments designed to ease the tax-filing requirements for small businesses.

Senators voted 61-35 — six votes short of the necessary 67 — to reject an amendment by Sen. Mike Johanns (R-Neb.) that would strip a provision from the new healthcare law that requires businesses to report supply purchases of $600 or more with a single vendor. Likewise, the chamber voted 44-53 to defeat Sen. Max Baucus' (D-Mont.) amendment, which would accomplish the same provision but is unpaid-for. That amendment also required 67 votes.

At issue is a section of the new healthcare law that requires businesses, charities and state and local governments to file 1099 reports for all transactions above $600 per year. The votes also represented a noteworthy showdown between Johanns and Baucus, who presented a similar idea but did not fund it through offset spending cuts.

Johanns said his approach was wiser since it was funded through unspent federal monies, directing the federal Office of Management and Budget to cut $39 billion in funds that would have been generated by the 1099 mandate.
The burden business faces because of the 1099 mandate means fewer jobs--heck, it means fewer businesses. Some will simply just shut their doors.

Senate rejects earmark ban

Despite a growing uproar against runaway government spending in general and earmarks in particular, the Senate voted down a two year earmark ban, 56-39.

Several Republicans voted to preserve earmarks, including Thad Cochran of Mississippi, Bob Bennett of Utah, Thad Cochran of Mississippi, Susan Collins of Maine, James Inhofe of Oklahoma, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Richard Lugar of Indiana, Richard Shelby of Alabama, and George Voinovich of Ohio.

Two Democrats, Claire McCaskill of Missouri and Mark Udall of Colorado, voted for the ban.

Our newest senator, Republican Mark Kirk of Illinois, voted opposite to what his predecessor, Rod Blagojevich-appointee Roland Burris, surely would have done. Kirk was sworn in last night and voted against earmarks this morning.

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Boehner and McConnell on where the GOP and Dems can work together

President Obama hosts Congressional leaders at the White House this morning. Two of them, Speaker of the House-designate John Boehner (R-OH) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), share their thoughts in the Washington Post:

While Americans have been asking "where are the jobs?" for more than two years, our friends across the aisle have clung for too long to the liberal wish list, including a job-killing health-care law, a "cap-and-trade" national energy tax and an out-of-control spending spree. The November elections represented a wholesale rejection of these policies.

Now we have a real chance to move away from the misplaced priorities of the past two years and work together on common-sense proposals that will build a foundation for the economic rebound we all want.

Despite the president's comments about focusing on job creation, Democrats in Congress are working feverishly to move legislation on everything except stopping the tax hikes and lowering spending. Their focus for the brief post-election "lame duck" session is on controversial items such as immigration, a repeal of "don't ask, don't tell," more spending and environmental regulations. Indeed, their actual legislative plan for the rest of the lame-duck session is to focus on anything but jobs.

Time is running out. This Friday, funding for the government runs out. And at the end of December, every single taxpayer will get hit with one of the largest tax hikes in American history - unless we put aside the controversial items and work together on the things we know Americans want and our struggling economy needs.
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