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Veepwatch: Is It Too Early To Speculate About Biden’s Replacement In 2012?

Tuesday, February 10, 2009  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

The Los Angeles Times calls the Veep a punch line. Ouch.

There have been many efforts to dump many veeps over the years as re-election campaigns approach. FDR has three different #2s –Garner, Wallace and Truman. There was a big push to dump RN in 1956. The only thing certain about President Obama’s re-election campaign is that he will cooly assess all of the options. There are already a lot of people under the Obama bus.

VP Biden is already a little long-in-the-tooth and very gaffe prone, and the president will surely not need the “foreign policy credentials” that Joe brought in the summer of 2008 come 2012. Chances are he’ll be looking at a swing state and a dynamic campaigner. Let the speculation begin.

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The Whitman Rollout

Tuesday, February 10, 2009  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

The LA Times’ Andrew Malcolm provides much of what you need to know about candidate for CA Gov Meg Whitman.

One key detail missing: It is whispered that Whitman has inked Pete Wehner to write for her. Wehner is in the very top tier of conservative intellectuals and wordsmiths –a huge signal to conservatives that Whitman’s center-right reputation won’t preclude openness to conservative ideas.

Whitman’s main problem? Two other center-right candidates in the persons of CA Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner and former CA Congressman Tom Campbell (now my colleague at Chapman Law School.) This crowd leaves the conservative faithful open to the appeal of a much more traditional conservative along the lines of former nominee William Simon Jr. On the other hand, a number of serious conservatives have already signed on with both Whitman and Poizner, and in a crowded field the campbell name has a long pedigree in California politics.

Bookmakers have to favor Whitman at this point and not just because of her personal financial resources –Poizner has those as well– but because her story is very interesting and in the Golden State, story matters more than almost anywhere else. Still, with 15 months until the primary, nothing is fixed about this race except that it will be perhaps the most expensive primaries in history.

It goes without saying that all three will be welcomed on the radio show even though the audience is national. No one in the country should be indifferent to California’s economic future. It either drives American prosperity or drags it down.

Meg Whitman former CEO of eBay announces her bid to win the Republican nomination for California governor

Helping Wilmington, Ohio, Part 2

Tuesday, February 10, 2009  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

On yesterday’s broadcast I featured FeedTheChildren’s effort to provide assistance to the hardest hit citizens of Wilmington, Ohio, featured on 60 Minutes a couple of weeks back. Here’s a story on the effort. The response from listeners was very encouraging and I’ll keep reminding the audience throughout the week that a gift of $25, $50 or $100 provides much needed help through the town’s Sugartree Ministries, featured on the CBS broadcast.

Here’s yesterday’s post with the contact info:

As anyone who saw 60 Minutes a couple of weeks back, the town of Wilmington, Ohio has been very hard hit by recession-related cutbacks. The economic toll has been extraordinary, and soFeedTheChildren is sending some supplies to assist the hardest hit families.

If you’d like to contribute to that effort, you can call 1-800-604-0300, or donate online here. Sugartree Ministries, featured in the 60 Minutes piece, is the lead agency for the food distribution effort.

Innovations In Species Protection

Tuesday, February 10, 2009  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

Yesterday’s Washington Post carried a story critical of one Pentagon program in Texas designed to both protect endangered species and allow the military to fully use its various facilities without running afoul of the Endangered Species Act.

Over the past two decades dozens of different approaches to mitigation for impacts to endangered species have been tried throughout the U.S. The Texas A&M-Fort Hood program profiled at Fort Hood is just one of those approaches, and shouldn’t be dismissed because of anonymous criticisms from government staffers who would prefer a more stringent approach. In the complicated world of species and habitat protection, innovation is usually very difficult, and anything other than complete preservation of all potential habitat is usually denounced by environmental activists, even though the property involved is often either privately held or vitally necessary for some other use –in this instance, the Pentagon’s. Property rights and effective governance require balance against the demands from the extreme that species protection trump everything else.

One of President Obama’s most interesting appointments is Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, who as a former Attorney General of Colorado, is familiar with the legal issues surrounding the ESA. If the new secretary pushes innovation in this area, landowners, industry and responsible activists exhausted by 20 years of legal battles will cheer his every step. A good place to start would be with a review of the Fort Hood program, endorsing what works and fixing what doesn’t.

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