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David Perdue for U.S. Senate In Georgia

Wednesday, July 23, 2014  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

Breaking my vacation routine to comment on the Georgia Senate race.

I supported Jack Kingston from the start of this race. I’ve known him a long time and he’s a good man. But he came up short yesterday, and that means I am all for David Perdue now. It is vital that the GOP hold this seat if the effort to recover the Senate from Harry Reid is to be successful.

I’ll contribute to Perdue’s coffers when I am back and hope you’ll do so at least with a small  contribution asap, and I will have him on the show often, and perhaps Jamie Weinstein or Ed Morrissey will host him in my absence.  The late run-off gave Democrats an advantage here, and the Dems will try and swipe a seat here using a legacy candidate as they have done in Arkansas with the Pryor name and Colorado and New Mexico with the Udall name.  Legacy candidates in the Senate are almost always mere shadows of their more famous forerunners.  If you like Mark Pryor, you’ll love Michelle Nunn –a rote yes vote for Harry Reid and thus way out of step with the states they are supposed to represent.

David Perdue is a self-made man and will make a fine senator.  Perhaps The Varsity will allow me to do a remote broadcast from its fine environs on his behalf given that he’s a Georgia Tech alum and this great eatery is across the street.  We’ll see but the point is that everyone in the Georgia GOP and the national party has to rally to David Perdue, just as Jack Kingston already has.  The days of going home mad when your candidate comes up short have to be over, and Perdue is a conservative with valuable private sector experience.

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The 2016 GOP Field, Romney, and The Western Conservative Summit

Monday, July 21, 2014  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

Western Conservative Summit

I left Denver Saturday night for vacation, after attending and speaking to/teaching for the Western Conservative Summit 2016 and the Young Conservative Leadership Summit. I was especially encouraged by the impressive turnout –3,500 Saturday night– for what has become the “CPAC of the Summer in the Rockies,” and by the quality of the 120 16-20 year olds I spent teaching for the entire week prior.  Next year I expect the numbers for both WCS and YCLS to double and more, and for the WCS ’15 to actually explode in attendance as every major would-be president figures out what Ben Carson, Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, Bobby Jindal and Sarah Palin figured out this year: If you want to be in the mix for 2016 and among conservative leadership, you have to attend and speak to thousands of activists assembled.  Memo to candidates, consultants, and activists all: Book early for next year.

As part of the #YCLS I ran four mock Iowa caucuses of approximately 30 students each time.  Cruz won a narrow majority of the young folks after they all argued and debated each other for an hour each time, but with respectable showings for Chris Christie, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Rick Santorum, and Scott Walker.  Two of the 120 were die-hard Rick Perry people.  One lone fellow argued Ohio Governor John Kasich’s case (no, it wasn’t me) and everyone else struck out.  Seems the young folk liked the Cruz filibuster –a lot.  Of course it is very early, but like other straws in the wind, this Cruz-centric crowd left an impression because these folks committed a week of their summer (sure there was white-water rafting and afternoons off) to politics and Con Law for smart young people.  Early indicators are encouraging for the Texas senator who keynoted the big Summit on Saturday night and brought the crowd to its feet.  (As did Jindal the night before, and my students found me on Saturday to talk about just how impressed they had been with Jindal who had not a single supporter in all the mock caucuses.  That is what campaigning does.)

Thanks to Senator Bill Armstrong who is president of Colorado Christian University and Senator John Andrews who is the head of the Centennial Institute that sponsors both the Youth Leadership and Western Conservative summits.  They have spent five years building an important event which is now growing exponentially.  Visit CCU.edu, The Centennial Institute website, the Western Conservative Summit 2015 webpage as soon as it is up and running, but if you are part of Team Anyone hoping to be the nominee in 2016, track down John Andrews and ask for the Saturday night slot now. Next year’s straw poll will be a news event –the new “Ames poll.”

Speaking of 2016, my Washington Examiner column today reflects the growing Romney buzz.  The Romney-haters have already told me how terrible an idea this is, but I merely report what is real: There is a growing demand among not just his hardest core supporters but by influencers across the ideological spectrum who see the need for an experienced candidate to take on Hillary and the left.  As the column notes, I haven’t spoken or emailed with Governor Romney for months, and all I’ve ever heard him say is “No, no, no, no, no,” on my show and in every venue.  But there it was all week in Colorado and especially this weekend among the activists: “What do you hear about Romney?”  The answer is in the column.  What I also hear is a selective reading of history when people bring up Stassen and not Reagan when it comes to multiple nominations, and when people forget the repeated tries of Nixon, Dole, Taft and Dewey.  The record is mixed for those who had the nomination once and lost, but the idea that it is impossible, well, that just doesn’t reflect the record or the fact that everything has changed except, per usual, the conventional wisdom.

As noted, I am off for two weeks, painting sunflowers and reading Michael Oren (see below).  The world is in crisis and I haven’t left you alone, however, with the Daily Caller’s Jamie Weinstein and Hot Air’s Ed Morrissey doing back-to-back weeks of guest hosting so that the breaking news is always covered.  My thanks in advance to both gentlemen, pros of the first order, though Ed is sadly a Steelers fan and on the wrong side of history.  Of course I dropped this new Romney-related column and  Politico Magazine border kids article on them and then bolted for the back porch.  Not all of the hundreds of comments on the latter have been positive.  Only fair to set up the shows this way.

One last island of diversion amid the war that Israel must win and the pariah status that Russia and Putin have earned: The SI story on LeBron.  Enjoy.  And pray for the IDF and civilians as the battle terrorists who use civilians as shields and would not hesitate to use any weapon it could obtain to kill as many Jews as they could.  If anyone lacks clarity on the morality of Israel’s action, they are sadly without a compass as to what faces the world in western Iraq –and in Moscow.

Michael Oren Spells It Out For You: “Essentially, Hamas invaded Israel first.”

Friday, July 18, 2014  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

Professor Michael Oren was formerly Israel’s ambassador to the United States, and is a widely read and respected scholar of Middle East history who has taught at Harvard, Yale and Georgetown and is now living and teaching full-time in Israel after his retirement from his diplomatic post last year.

Oren has written histories of both the 1967 and Yom Kippur wars and his Power, Faith, and Fantasy: America in the Middle East: 1776 to the Present is must reading for serious commentators on the  Middle East (and re-reading for my vacation ahead.)  He is also a veteran tank commander in the IDF.

Buried deep in today’s lead story in the New York Times on the current battle in the long-running Israeli-Hamas war are these words from Oren which should be spread far and wide:

Michael B. Oren, Israel’s former ambassador to Washington, said in a late-night interview that Mr. Netanyahu had “exercised extraordinary restraint up until now” by not engaging ground troops and “paid a heavy political price for it.” Thursday’s tunnel attack, he said, “was a game changer,” adding, “Essentially, Hamas invaded Israel first.”

In contrast to the Iron Dome missile-defense system that Israel says has stopped some 300 rockets from hitting populated areas over the last 10 days, Mr. Oren said, “We don’t have a response to the tunnels.”

He added, “They are reinforced concrete tunnels, basically impregnable from the air and their openings are camouflaged.”

Israel will stay until the tunnels are destroyed.  Fences have worked elsewhere.  Perhaps Israel ought to build a moat.  A very deep moat. Someday when Hamas is gone and peace does come, it could become a canal of extraordinary beauty and commerce.  But now Israel needs a moat.

“The Border Kids”

Thursday, July 17, 2014  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

 

My Politico Magazine piece on the border kids has generated quite a bit of email –pro and con– and tweets of every variety.  As with everything I have ever written on the subject, people see in it what they want to but I see the picture above and argue that the churches of America be given a chance to solve the problem of the children who are already here while the construction of a long, strong, high, double-sided fence be begun immediately to send the message that it has to stop.

 

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