Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Mike Lee, Republican Nominee for U.S. Senate
Together, Tim Bridgewater and Mike Lee capitalized on the pent-up angst against Senator Bennett and six weeks ago at the state nominating convention they sent shock waves back to Washington D.C. They unseated three-term Senator Bob Bennett (R-UT) and faced off in yesterday's primary election. It was the first time in a long time a sitting senator seeking re-election from Utah had been denied the nomination.
Many are the articles and posts about the reasons, but it all boils down to this in my opinion: We are in perilous times and those who are aligned with the same old ways of Washington politics are a dying breed. "Change" swept Barack Obama into the White House, and now America has re-awakened to its founding principles and is re-trenching. $13 Trillion in long-term debt for entitlement programs the country cannot afford is at the top of my list of concerns.
A substantive change in direction is in order, and this November must reverse the miscalculations of the electorate in 2008. The current course is unsustainable.
The reason the Constitution is so pivotal in this election cycle and Mike Lee is perfectly positioned to champion that discussion in the halls of Congress (along with what I believe will be a wave of like-minded freshmen legislators) is that it has vouched safe the possibility and hope for a mid-term correction. Historically, mid-term elections never tend to favor sitting Presidents, and this one in particular faces an aroused electorate who will likely strip him of his filibuster-proof majority.
In all his social re-engineering the one thing Barack Obama has not done is to govern from the middle. He has lost middle America, and that is never a good thing for a POTUS.
Mike Lee cannot do it all by himself, but this is not the year to be an incumbent of any stripe. Mike Lee is a rock-solid, limited-government conservative who will make a strong start and engage his colleagues in attempting to fix Washington politics as usual. I fully expect him to join with his colleagues this fall to rein in out-of-control spending, reduce our $13 Trillion national debt and reverse destructive and repressive tax policy. Pay attention: That's $13,000,000,000,000 -- count 'em, twelve zeros!!!
We are a representative republic, and we need informed citizens if it is to thrive, or ultimately even survive. In our times, American freedom is being dismantled, piece by piece, before our very eyes by the current administration in Washington, and few people seem to be concerned about it.
The president's poll numbers are going down because increasing numbers of people are uncomfortable with the results (or lack thereof) he is posting. The stunning and swift damage being done to the fundamental structure of this nation goes far beyond particular counterproductive policies.
I can find nowhere in the Constitution of the United States (and I am NOT Mike Lee) where it says the POTUS has the authority to extract (dare we use the term "shakedown?") $20 BILLION from a private enterprise (even if it is foreign-owned British Petroleum) and then re-distribute that wealth as he sees fit to whomever he deems worthy of compensation. Show me where the Constitution says he can do that without due process. Nowhere.
So why does the Constitution matter this year? Because it was divinely inspired and by abiding in its core principles we can find our way out of the profligate spending swamp we are drowning in. Call me optimistic.
The pundits claimed Bob Bennett wasn't "conservative enough." As I have pointed out before, I never have had a problem with Bob Bennett's conservative credentials overall. However, he seemed to have lost his way in Washington when he asserted the financial institutions who funded his political career were just "too big to fail."
If Mike Lee disappoints and begins drinking from the Potomac fever water trough he won't last very long. But courageous senators who stand on principle are never out of favor with a principled electorate, even when that means we may lose the entitlement programs we can't sustain as a nation.
I think he's the man in this election cycle who can withstand it in the same way Rob Bishop has.
So now the work for Lee begins. First, he must win the general election against a savvy and successful businessman and moderate Democrat, Sam Granato. Some would have you believe it will be a "walk-over" campaign, but do not be misled.
There are substantial reasons a return to the basic guiding principles of the Constitution is not only inevitable but essential. My hope is that Mike will help restore the conversation in the halls of Congress that has been lacking for many years. I expect him to hold the toes of Congress to the fires that burn within him.
If he doesn't, you may rest assured his toes will be on the fire in the next election he faces. I believe he welcomes that degree of scrutiny and accountability.
You can label him an "ideologue" if you like, but for me and my house I like those ideals. I have consistently embraced his candidacy since the moment I was first introduced to his candidacy last January by my good friend Doug Holmes. As I predicted, that little flame became the wildfire producing this nomination.
He instills hope in me that America might still be able to reverse the violent and destructive financial lurch to the left imposed on us since Obama's election.
I invite all Utahns to unite behind him for the victory in November. I'll have more to say about it between now and then.
Congratulations, Mike and Sharon. We're all behind you! Well, at least I am (and 93,135 additional close friends who voted for you).