As stated in the previous post, Governor Romney has had a busy weekend working hard for conservatives as voters in several states seek to nominate the best reformers in their primaries this Tuesday. These have included not only the stop in New Hampshire, where he pledged support for the winner of their Senate primary, but also campaign appearances for several candidates in Romney’s former state of Massachusetts and neighboring Connecticut.
Charlie Baker is running against Deval Patrick for Governor of Massachusetts. This is obviously a race that means very much to Romney, as the past four years have seen the budget surplus and business friendly policies instituted by his administration tossed away by the reckless mismanagement of Patrick’s tenure. Throughout the summer, Baker has been arguing that Massachusetts has “had enough… Enough of the tax hikes, the broken promises, the insider deals, the special interests controlling what gets done on Beacon Hill, the unwillingness to make tough decisions that will help cities and towns save money, the lack of meaningful reforms.” Baker promises to make those tough decisions that have been avoided by Patrick. These include in his early agenda, limited state benefits only to residents of Massachusetts, cutting unnecessary construction projects, and bureaucratic reform designed for making Massachusetts a better place for business. Along with government cuts, Baker will focus on job growth for the state, through lowered sales taxes, lowered income taxes, a simplified tax code for business, and reformed government programs.
Karyn Polito is running for State Treasurer in Massachusetts, where her opponent, determined tomorrow, will be either Steve Grossman or Steve Murphy. Returning to his former state, Romney was able to bring a strong personal endorsement for Polito, stating:
When I was governor, I could count on Karyn Polito to stand with me when it came to keeping taxes low and cutting wasteful spending. She is a fiscal conservative who’s not afraid to take on the political machine. As treasurer, Karyn will be a watchdog for the people, and we need more people like her in state government.
Polito meanwhile states that she intends to bring the fiscal conservative philosophy brought to the state by Governor Romney to her approach as State Treasurer. She will join Governor Baker in her support for reduced taxes and a simplified tax code providing a competitive atmosphere for business in Massachusetts. Meanwhile she will seek alternate means toward fixing the budget deficit in the state, specifically cutting spending and alternate sources of revenue such as expanded gaming contracts.
Jeff Perry has also received Romney’s attention in these final days before the Massachusetts primary as the former Governor has included campaign stops in the 10th Congressional district during his recent visit back in Massachusetts. Containing the south shore and Cape Cod regions of the state, the tenth is among the more conservative parts of Massachusetts, and having been vacated by retiring Democrat Bill Delahunt is very much in play this November. As a State Representative he has fought valiantly against efforts to see taxes raised in the state, opposing higher taxes as the answer to budget shortfalls and actively seeking the reduction of sales and fuel taxes. If victorious in tomorrow’s primary and in the November election he will bring the same philosophy to Washington, favoring low taxes and trusting the growth of small business as the answer to the unemployment problem.
In Connecticut, Thomas Foley has received a great deal of support from Governor Romney. Connecticut has shown a leaning toward its Democratic candidates throughout the summer, but has since tightened considerably as Senate candidate Linda McMahon is now closing on Democrat Richard Blumenthal, and Foley is now within seven points of Dan Malloy. With Malloy still under fifty percent support, Foley’s message still has a solid opportunity to catch on to the voters of Connecticut, and there is significant reason to believe it will. For instance, his effort to make Connecticut “Employer Friendly.” Foley sees a growing unemployment rate as business flees the high taxes and complicated government mandates coming from Hartford. Though Jodi Rell has attempted to keep taxes low, Democrats in the state legislature have on multiple occasions overridden her veto to impose unnecessary fees and regulations on business. As a result, Connecticut’s taxes remain among the highest in the nation. As Governor, Foley will work hard to see the end of this, working to reduce government spending and see a bipartisan plan toward reducing taxes passed so that Connecticut can be more competitive for business.
Foley is also running with Mark Boughton, the popular mayor of Danbury, and a proven reformer who has guaranteed the safety of his constituents while keeping spending under control.
In addition to this, Romney has also focused outside of New England, where he has endorsed eight candidates from Nebraska, complete with financial contributions from Free and Strong America PAC. The many good points of these eight reformers, including popular and effective Governor Dave Heineman will be addressed in a coming post.
This past week has seen new polling regarding several strong Republican gubernatorial candidates endorsed by Mitt Romney. Himself a former Governor of Massachusetts, Romney understands the sort of executive capability it takes to make a strong governor. Therefore, it is no surprise that the following polls generally show good news for these Republicans.
First, in California, where the early trend favoring Jerry Brown has faded according to two polls released this month showing Meg Whitman moving into the lead. Survey USA, polling early in the month, was the first to show Whitman moving ahead, though only narrowly, taking a 44-43 lead over Brown in a poll of 602 likely voters.
This past week, Rasmussen has followed up on this with a poll of 750 likely voters showing Whitman ahead by a more significant eight point margin. In this poll Whitman leads 48-40, and breaks the 50% barrier when “leaners” are included, leading 51-43. The toplines of the poll also show an advantage for Whitman in favorability ratings. 30% hold a very favorable opinion of Whitman, to 25% very unfavorable. Brown meanwhile is underwater at 25/38. Good news for Meg Whitman all around.
For South Carolina, Rasmussen Reports has released a poll just today that shows Nikki Haley leading Democrat Vincent Sheheen by a solid sixteen point margin, 52-36. This is consistent with the July poll in the state, although this month shows Haley up over the crucial 50% mark. The poll also shows Haley with stronger favorability ratings than Sheheen, and stronger name recognition.
On top of these, today has brought another gubernatorial endorsement from Mitt Romney, as he has turned his attention toward the state of Oklahoma. Mary Fallin headlines the Republican ticket for Sooners, in her quest to become the state’s next governor. Fallin is a former Lt. Governor in Oklahoma and currently represents the 5th district in the U.S. House of Representatives. In July, she defeated Randy Brogdon and two other candidates to win the Republican nomination for governor. She proudly runs on her strong conservative voting record as a member of the House Republican minority during these past four years, reminding voters in Tom Coburn’s state that when faced with a leftist agenda, there is nothing wrong with the word “No.” Her gubernatorial campaign centers around making Oklahoma a strong state for doing business. With low taxes and reduced spending , Fallin intends to keep Oklahoma away from the economic stagnation that is facing New York, and the high unemployment of Granholm’s Michigan.
As for the polling, Rasmussen Reports today shows Fallin leading by a solid 52-37 margin over her rival Jari Askins. This is consistent with previous surveys and shows a race maintaining steadily as a solid Republican gain in the conservative state. Democrat incumbent Brad Henry is unable to run due to term limits. Despite his fairly strong job approval rating in the state, the Republican trend, Fallin’s strong economic message, and Oklahoma’s penchant for conservatives is making this a difficult state for Democrats to hold.
Fallin is not the only Oklahoma candidate to receive an endorsement from Romney today. Five others, including Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb and four Congressional candidates will be receiving support from Romney’s Free and Strong America PAC this year. Previews on these five will come in the next post.
Today, Governor Romney is back in his childhood home state of Michigan, where he will attend campaign events backing Michigan Republican primary winner Rick Snyder in his continuing campaign to become the state’s 48th governor. As those who have followed the race through the summer are aware, before the August 3 primary, Romney had endorsed the more conservative Republican candidate Pete Hoekstra. Now that the people of Michigan have spoken in favor of the moderate Snyder over Hoekstra, Cox, and Bouchard, Romney is leading the way in unifying conservatives behind the better candidate for the general election.
In his endorsement of Snyder, Romney succinctly explained why conservatives, Republicans, and fiscally responsible independents now need to unite behind Snyder:
“Rick Snyder is a successful businessman, manager, and job creator, which makes him uniquely qualified to lead Michigan through these challenging economic times. Rick will promote pro-growth policies that will put people back to work and get Michigan back on the right track”
Although conservatives are uncertain about some of Snyder’s views on social issues, Snyder is an outsider and reasoned fiscal conservative who will work to the benefit on economic issues. With a state as hard hit by the recession as Michigan, this is not something voters should take lightly. Snyder understands the many challenges that face Michigan today. While Bernero represents the big union interests and continuance of failed Granholm policies that have made the economic climate so severe in the state – Michigan unemployment stands upward of 13 percent – Snyder has a sweeping ten point plan to “reinvent” and “create an era of innovation in Michigan.” These include the elimination of the punishing Michigan Business Tax in favor of a simple flat corporate tax in the model of Utah or Virginia, and an effort toward government efficiency that aims to reduce more than $2 billion in government spending.
As Rick’s “One Tough Nerd” campaign argues, the next governor of Michigan will need the dedicated efforts that only a tough nerd such as Rick Snyder can bring to the state. That is, nerds “seek input from many sources. Nerds pay attention to what’s going on around them. They develop plans, and follow though, no matter what. Nerds know how to work with others to get things done. Nerds don’t take “no” for an answer.” With this nerd philosophy, Rick will see his plan of reduced taxes, reduced government, and reduced unemployment brought through for Michigan. After eight years of failed left-wing governance from Jennifer Granholm, the state desperately needs it.
Along with the six candidates from Colorado, Free and Strong America PAC proudly announced the endorsement of Senate candidate Dino Rossi in Washington and two candidates in Wyoming.
Dino Rossi took 34% of the vote in Tuesday’s open primary in Washington to earn himself a bid to take on incumbent Democrat Patty Murray this November. This has been a closely watched race all summer, as polling has continuously shown Murray as surprisingly vulnerable. If Republicans are to have any chance at winning back control of the Senate in just over ten weeks, this Washington race is one of the many dominoes that will need to fall in the right direction. Rossi has experience in a statewide campaign, having lost a controversial recount battle to Christine Gregoire in the race for Governor in 2004.
Regarding Rossi, Romney has said the following in his endorsement:
A successful businessman and former state senator, Dino Rossi is committed to restoring fiscal discipline and transparency to Congress. Dino will stand up to the Washington culture of higher spending, higher debt, and higher taxes, and will make the tough choices necessary to get our economy back on track.
Rossi’s tenure in the Washington State Senate back this endorsement, as in 2002, he famously led an initiative to cut unnecessary programs that saw the closing of a $2.7 billion deficit in the state budget. As a State Senator, Rossi was a bipartisan leader, able to find consensus on fiscal conservative issues in the normally left-leaning state. Accomplishing such a feat is far more difficult inside the Beltway, but Rossi has shown the principles necessary to move the country forward, and out of the mess created by the tax and spend policies of D.C:
The problem isn’t that taxes are too low; it’s that spending is too high… If Congress keeps spending your money at this unprecedented pace, our national debt will reach $19.6 trillion by 2015. Both Republicans and Democrats are guilty of running up our nation’s credit card without considering how they’re going to pay the bill. Congress is putting our economic future in jeopardy by continuing to spend money they don’t have.
Rossi follows up these arguments with specific aims regarding this nation’s spending and tax policy, including extending the Bush tax cuts, eliminating the death tax, stopping the misguided aim of establishing a consumption tax, canceling unspent “porkulus” funds, and as with many of the other candidates previewed on here, seeking a balanced budget amendment.
Dino Rossi has a strong message and an ability to see it through. This is what he will need over the coming months, that he can gain the opportunity to bring his skills to D.C. Unified, the Republican candidates gained more votes in the open primary than Patty Murray; it is now Rossi’s challenge to unite those voters behind his banner and win over others who are still undecided. In that effort, Rossi has this solid fiscal conservative message behind him. Patty Murray meanwhile has the accomplishments of runaway spending, a health care takeover, the automatic tax hike that will come into effect in January, and the remaining far left agenda that she endorses. This race is currently ranked as a toss up. Dino Rossi needs all of the help Washington voters and citizens nationwide can bring him.
In the great state of Wyoming, Matt Mead has earned Mitt Romney’s endorsement in his campaign to become the Equality State’s next governor. On Tuesday, Mead rose to the top in a narrow three way Republican primary, on his message of bringing the common sense of the private sector into a field dominated by career politicians. Currently, Wyoming fares reasonably well in the midst of this recession. As Mead points out on his campaign site, this is due to the strong pro-business and pro-taxpayer atmosphere within the state. Mead’s aim as governor is to see that this stays that way:
Wyoming is financially sound not just by good fortune but by frugality and by law. We should continue to be fiscally conservative.
Mead is also a champion of Wyoming’s small state rights. As he argues, too often the Beltway mentality sees D.C. politicians trampling over smaller states with sweeping intrusive federal legislation. Mead recognizes the value that Wyoming brings to the rest of the nation: its abundance of mineral resources, its parks and natural reserves, its open spaces and atmosphere for economic growth. As governor, Mead will protect these advantages, and devote himself to the rights of his state and its citizens.
Wyoming represents a strong opportunity for a Republican state house pickup. Incumbent Democrat Dave Freudenthal, though likely eligible to seek a third term has opted not to do so. Polling by Rasmussen Reports from just after the primaries shows Mead with a tremendous thirty-four point lead on his opponent, easily more than doubling her prospective percentage of the vote. Cook rates this race as “Likely GOP,” while Rothenberg and Real Clear Politics actually consider this seat “Safe” for the Republican candidate. Even so, the fight must continue until the race has been won.
Cynthia Lummis Wiederspahn, the at-large Representative in the House is the other Wyoming candidate to attract Romney’s attention, as she seeks reelection. Lummis is a freshman Republican, who won her seat against the Democrat wave in 2008 upon the retirement of Barbara Cubin. Lummis is a self described “idealist and an optimist” whose positive small-government message in Congress should receive new support in the coming Republican majority. As a former State Treasurer, she is experienced with bringing taxpayers the best for what is taken of their earnings, and ensuring that government take is kept low, that the government does not unfairly infringe upon its citzens’ finances.
Wyoming’s at-large district has been guided wisely by Republican hands for more than three decades, since the beginning of Dick Cheney’s tenure in the seat. With the Republican trend of 2010 and the wise stewardship of Cynthia Lummis, that trend will not change this November. Polling gives the incumbent Republican a thirty point edge over her challenger, and considered “very safe.” Nevertheless, as with Matt Mead above, no race is won until the last vote is counted, and the active support of conservatives is needed through Election Day.
In his endorsement of the Wyoming candidates, Mitt Romney said:
Too many of our leaders are intent on enacting policies that will grow the size of government and further stall our economic recovery. Wyoming – and our nation – needs fiscally conservative leaders like Mead and Lummis who will work to turn our ailing economy around, and put people back to work.
Mead, Lummis, as well as Rossi in Washington are only three of a tremendous conservative wave that is about to strike hard across this nation. For entirely too long, the tax and spend policies of Beltway minded politicians have expanded our debt, weakened our dollar, while failing to repair our economy and create jobs. This is because the government cannot repair the economy, or creating lasting private sector employment. Such can only be done within the private sector, with the government taking the initiative only in getting out of the way of business. The intrusive policies of the Obama administration have done exactly the opposite, imposing government on even the smallest details of business big and small, crippling opportunities for growth.
It is time for conservatives to stand proud on fiscal issues, and demand the end of runaway government spending and regulation. The first step in doing so is actively supporting candidates such as Rossi, Mead, and Lummis, the six Colorado candidates previewed in the post below, and the dozens others endorsed by Governor Romney. In doing so, we will replace Beltway politicians, who believe themselves entitled to do as they will, with true American leaders who understand, live, and fight the challenges facing this nation and will do their best to see the rights and goals of the American people protected.
Well, the ongoing theme of razor thin continues to apply to the Georgia gubernatorial primary runoff between Karen Handel and Nathan Deal. Last night finished with Deal holding onto a narrow lead of fewer than 2500 votes. Handel has not conceded the race, as some absentee ballots are yet outstanding and Georgia does have a fair share of military voters. Nevertheless, claiming enough of a majority among the few thousand remaining absentee votes to win the election will be a tall order for Handel. While it is a strong enough possibility to warrant a wait and see attitude until the final numbers are in, closing a 2500 vote gap is somewhat of a long shot.
As with last week’s outcome in Michigan, should our favored candidate not find numbers on our side, the only proper move for conservatives is to rally behind Nathan Deal for Georgia governor. Although some principled conservatives are uncomfortable with the notion of falling in line behind the less desirable candidate, it is often a necessary move. While many Romney supporters have hoped, and still hope that Karen Handel will be the Republican candidate in Georgia, the fact remains that Nathan Deal will be a stronger conservative leader, and better for the state of Georgia than Roy Barnes or anybody the Democrats bring to the table. Remember, too, that with redistricting on the agenda after 2010, this is an extremely important cycle for state governments. Polling shows the potential for the statehouses to trend back toward the Republicans at a crucial time, but only if we avoid division within the party.
As for that polling, it speaks fairly well for the people of Georgia, giving the Republican candidate a narrow advantage over Roy Barnes. Rasmussen Reports polling from before the runoff showed Deal ahead of Barnes 49-43. Should Handel manage to find enough votes to claim victory in the runoff, her lead over Barnes was a bit more narrow, at 45-44. Either way it would not be surprising to see the numbers by the end of August somewhat better than these, as the divisive nature of the primary runoff is behind the voters and Republicans rally around their candidate in stronger numbers.
Republicans are almost certain to elect another Governor in South Dakota as well. In the wake of last week’s poll that showed SD At Large Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth Sandlin in deep trouble against Romney endorsed candidate Kristi Noem, Rasmussen has released a poll on the gubernatorial race showing how truly bad things can be for Democrats in the Mount Rushmore State. Dennis Daugaard, another beneficiary of Romney’s endorsement, has jumped out to a stunning thirty-two point lead over Democrat Scott Heidepriem. This race was never particularly close, and yet the latest poll shows Daugaard’s lead nearly doubling over the past month. If this news is bad for anybody who may have believed Heidepriem still had an outside chance, it is terrible for Herseth Sandlin. Closing her current nine point deficit will be near to impossible, with the candidate at the top of the ticket losing by such a margin. In fact, considering the fair degree of fondness South Dakota has historically shown for Democrats, such a margin should send shockwaves throughout the west.
In Michigan, where Rick Snyder took the primary victory last week, the moderate Republican now finds himself with a respectable twelve point lead in a Rasmussen poll taken the day after the primary. Whether the strong lead is due to Snyder’s recent primary victory is still in question until the numbers are backed by further polling. With the level of dissatisfaction in Michigan for current Democrat Governor Jennifer Granholm and the less than stellar numbers reflected within the poll for President Obama, a steady twelve point lead for Snyder is far from inconceivable. The poll also shows strong favorability ratings for Snyder, compared to a more evenly balanced favorable/unfavorable ratio for the Democrat Virg Bernero. RealClearPolitics and the Cook Political Report both currently see the Michigan gubernatorial race as “Leaning Republican.”
Finally, polling released today has touched on the strong campaign, backed by Mitt Romney, of Tennessee candidate Bill Haslam. Rasmussen reports takes the first post-primary look at the gubernatorial race and shows Haslam leading McWherter by a powerful 56-31 margin. Less than one week removed from the primary, this could also reflect something of a temporary post-primary bounce. Even so, it is hard to say this race will be close once the margin has settled. Factor in less recent polling by Mason-Dixon Polling and Research and by Crawford, Johnson and Northcott for WSMV-Nashville have also shown Haslam up by double digits, and it is safe to say that Republicans will be victorious in the Volunteer State come November.
Congratulations to candidates Bill Haslam and Diane Black, both endorsed by Governor Romney who jumped in front of their primary competitors and never looked back Thursday night. The two will go on to challenge Mike McWherter and Brett Carter in the general election, in which conservatives will likely see victory yet again. Both races are considered as trending strongly in favor of the Republicans.
Both offices are open seats currently held by Democrats. Haslam headlines the Republican slate for the state of Tennessee in his bid to become the state’s next governor. Incumbent Democrat Phil Bredesen is unable to seek reelection due to term limits. Polling from before the primary has shown Haslam with a double digit lead over McWherter. Black, meanwhile, will fight to claim the seat of Representative Bart Gordon in the sixth district, who has chosen to retire after his strained arguments in favor of the health care takeover were not well received by his constituents. The sixth is Al Gore’s old district, now become a prime pickup opportunity for Black and the GOP.