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Debating Ex-Im With Jeb and Jim

Thursday, June 26, 2014  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

Congressman Jeb Hensarling is a great conservative from Texas who chairs the House Financial Services Committee.  Jim Talent is the terrific former senator from Missouri.  I spoke with both of them on Wednesday’s show about a number of subjects, but about the reauthorization of the Ex-Im Bank with both.  I hope you read or listen to boh conversations:

Audio: Hensarling


Audio: Talent


Transcript Hensarling:

HH: I want to begin today with Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, Jeb Hensarling from the great 5th Congressional district of Texas. Mr. Chairman, welcome back, it’s always a pleasure to speak with you.

JH: Thanks, Hugh.

HH: The RNC announced today that the finalists for the convention in 2016 are Cleveland and Dallas. I think we can agree that Cleveland is a preferable place to be in late June/early July, can’t we?

JH: Well, I knew we were going to disagree on Ex/Im. I didn’t know we’d disagree so early in the interview on something. No. Dallas. Big D. People need to know what free enterprise and freedom is all about. Come to Texas. It’s a wonderful place. Our barbeque and our Mexican food is better. Continue Reading

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2014: Triumph Of The Buckley Rule, Suspension of the Limbaugh Corollary

Wednesday, June 25, 2014  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

The Buckley Rule, named for William F. Buckley Jr., counsels voters to cast their ballots for the most conservative Republican who could win in November.

The Limbaugh Corollary seems to add the requirement that voters allow for modern campaigns to make up perceived gaps that put more conservative candidates behind more moderate candidates early in an election cycle.

The Limbaugh corollary carries high returns –Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz– when it works.  Bad losses when it doesn’t –Christine O’Donnnell v. Mike Castle being the most prominent example.

It seems to me that in this cycle the GOP electorate is overwhelmingly endorsing the Buckley Rule and is risk averse to the Limbaugh Corollary, which seems suspended pending a safer America in which the urgency of electing a GOP Senate and as many GOP governors as possible in 2014 to do the most to stop the terrible effects of the deadly combination of President Obama’s ideology, incompetence, and contempt for the rule of law.

Thus Thad Cochran’s win in Mississippi and Bob Beauprez’s triumph in Colorado.  I also think the same set of circumstances will power Jack Kingston to the GOP nomination for Senate in Georgia and Doug Ducey into the finals of Arizona’s race to replace Jan Brewer in the statehouse.  Both Kingston and Ducey are trough-going conservatives who can win in a walk, and who will govern as reformers in the case of Ducey and as an internationalist pro-defense senator like Marco Rubio when it comes to Kingston.

The GOP is close to having made it through the entire 2014 primary cycle without allowing Democrats to foist on them a gaffe-prone candidate who could cripple candidates across the country.  Great news for the GOP and the country.  bad news for President Obama and Harry Reid.

When will a willingness to embrace the Limbaugh Corollary return?  When the country is through this very dangerous period.  How dangerous is it?  Just read yesterday’s interview with former Vice President Dick Cheney to get a sense of that.

Truth be told, we need both the Buckley Rule and the Limbaugh Corollary because the latter makes the former work to keep conservatives conservative.  The losses of 2010 and 2012 that resulted from lousy candidates and campaigns didn’t repeal either rule but rather argues for their very careful consideration in every cycle and every race, which is what the GOP is doing this time around.

And when two great conservatives run against each other –as was the case in Oklahoma– bet on the candidate with the deeper grassroots network and retail politics experience, as was the case with James Lankford, soon to be Oklahoma’s new senator, and a great one in time.  T.W. Shannon will be back in national politics soon –he is too talented not to be, but Lankford is a superstar in the making who is helping the GOP reload on talent in the World’s Greatest Deliberative Body.


Vice President Cheney On The Collapse Of The Obama Foreign Policy

Tuesday, June 24, 2014  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

Former Vice President Dick Cheney joined me for a wide-ranging conversation about American foreign policy on today’s show, which including his sobering assessment that American likely faces another devastating attack on the homeland before this decade is out. He and his daughter Liz Cheney, former Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State of Near Eastern Affairs and chair of the Iran Syria Policy and Operations Group have launched The Alliance for a Strong America to keep national security and defense issues front and center heading in 2014 and 2016: \

The audio: 06-24hhs-cheney

The transcript:

HH: Very pleased to have back as a special guest today, Vice President Richard Cheney, of course not just that, former Secretary of Defense, former chief of staff to the President, former member of the House, president of the Senate, husband of Lynne, father of Liz and Mary, grandpa, author of My Life. Welcome back, Mr. Vice President, always a pleasure to have you.

DC: Well, it’s good to talk to you, Hugh.

HH: I want to begin with an overview. I’ve got a lot to ask you about. The overview, though, is I think this is the foreign policy equivalent of a bridge collapse, or maybe many bridges collapsing in Iraq, al-Shabaab in Somalia, attacks in Kenya, Boko Haram in Nigeria, there were new abductions today, the Taliban attacked the Karachi Airport, killed 18 people. And now we’ve got Iraq falling apart. Am I not correct that this may be the low point of American foreign policy post-the disillusion of the Soviet Union, or at least since 9/11?

DC: Well, certainly since 9/11. Of course, we got hit here at home on 9/11, the worst attack on the homeland ever. But no, the thing that’s striking about it, and everybody’s sort of been focused in on Iraq, is how widespread this problem is. And one of the things I’ve always been amazed by is the extent to which this administration has gone out of its way to claim the problem was solved because they got bin Laden, or they keep talking about al Qaeda’s been decimated, the only thing left is Zawahiri, and he’s on his last legs kind of thing, when in reality, both from a factual standpoint as well as the anecdotal stuff you’ve just cited, it’s a bigger problem than ever. I don’t know if you saw the Rand study that came out here a couple of weeks ago that said in the four year period of time there had been a 58% increase in the number of al Qaeda type organizations out there, Salafi jihadist organizations. 58% in only four years, and a doubling of the number of people, an estimate, obviously, doubling of the number of people that are involved in these organizations. And they’re all like al Qaeda in terms of their basic outlook, their goals and objectives and so forth. And the administration has been wandering around saying that we don’t have a terrorist problem. Continue Reading

How POTUS and Hillary Opened The Door To The Return Of Al Qaeda To Iraq

Monday, June 23, 2014  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

My Monday Washington Examiner column is on the consequences of the failure of President Obama and then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to secure a Status of Forces Agreement with Iraq in 2011.

The consequences are terrible for the people of Iraq, for its neighbors and eventually for us.  There is no rewriting the hard facts of history as both the president and Hillary attempted to do last week.  Bolting Iraq completely without leaving a residual force to provide the glue to keep Iraq’s army together and the resurgence of Al Qaeda in Iraq was a massive strategic error.  Team Obama didn’t see that then, but then again it sees nothing that isn’t obviously in its own political best interests.

The Washington Post notes the weekend’s developments:

The latest conquests give the radical Sunni Muslim insurgents unchecked control of hundreds of miles of territory spanning the Iraqi-Syrian border, erasing the line drawn between the two countries by colonial powers and advancing the extremists’ goal of establishing a pan-Islamic state.

This is the key Obama-Clinton legacy:  Undoing George W. Bush’s major achievement and allowing al Qaeda a base in which to grow and from which to metastasize.

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