Thursday, February 23, 2012

Illinois to Tax Offshore Drilling?

As if Illinois isn't already the political and economic laughingstock of the country, Governor Quinn is proposing to provide reason for infamy-- a tax on offshore drilling. You know all those oil rigs in Lake Michigan and the Mississippi River that we have "offshore", right? Per the Republic:
Gov. Pat Quinn believes oil rigs off U.S. shores may be key to saving Illinois about $75 million a year.  
The Democrat touched on an unusual proposal during his budget address Wednesday: requiring companies that drill in the outer continental shelf and profit from doing business in Illinois to pay a share of a corporate income tax in the state. He said doing so would close a tax code loophole. 
"For too long, we've had a revenue code that looks like Swiss cheese, with plenty of loopholes for the powerful. Many of these loopholes are based on politics, not economics," he said before legislators. "Why does Illinois give big oil companies the privilege of declaring their oil derricks in the Gulf of Mexico to be foreign countries?"
What does the state of Illinois have to do with the Gulf of Mexico? Well, some argue that the Outer Continental Shelf, underwater land that does not belong any state, but to the federal government. Why doesn't Governor Quinn then claim the treasures from the wreckage of the Titanic which could be claimed as an extension of the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf?

How can closing a supposed tax loophole be considered a savings to the state? Savings come from decreasing spending, not from increasing revenue. Additionally, this proposal provide no savings to the people of Illinois who would pay higher fuel prices. That is in addition to the fuel taxes we pay that are 5th highest in the country. If Governor Quinn wants to really talk about savings--be it the hard earned money of Illinoisans or his own job, he should consider repealing the income and corporate tax hike he signed into law last year.

H/T Illinois Review

Monday, February 20, 2012

New SarahPAC Video Shows the Best of Illinois' History

Today on President's Day, SarahPAC released a video which honored two of the nation's presidents  who  have ties to Illinois--Presidents Lincoln and Reagan. In a state whose recent claims to fame ( or perhaps better said infamy) include our most recent governors either in jail or soon-to-be in jail and a president whose policy have contributed to a credit downgrade, massive debt, and pervasive green cronyism, this recent video highlights what's right about Illinois' past,when so much is wrong about our present. The transcript of the video I believe is from Governor Palin's "Restoring Honor" speech given about a year and a half ago in Washington D.C., but the images highlight her visits to Ronald Reagan's boyhood home and his alma mater as well as her visit to Abraham Lincoln's presidential museum--all in Illinois. Governor Palin's words and the great video and editing by the guys at PassCodeCreative  speak volumes of Governor Palin's appreciation for the great character and accomplishments of these great leaders:


 Over the summer, our Illinois Organize4Palin group put together a heartfelt, but much less well produced and moving video indicating our support for Governor Palin because we saw, and still see, in her connections to those great men who are the best of our state's history:


While the words of support may have been in the context of what we anticipated would be a presidential run in 2012, our support still remains strong for Governor Palin, and we wish to continue to support the principles she espouses and the candidates who espouse those principles themselves.

Thank you, Governor Palin, and happy Presidents Day!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

President Obama AND GOP: Don't Underestimate the Wisdom of Women

On Fox and Friends earlier this week, Governor Palin spoke about the Obama administration’s contraception mandate which requires religious institutions, or any employers for that matter, to provide insurance coverage for contraceptives, even if it violates their consciences. Governor Palin responds with a perspective that few other politicians provide (emphasis added):
[President Obama is] underestimating the wisdom of women. Because women understand there is access to preventative care and contraception out there, and we don't need government to tell our employers that they must provide that for us. 
Truly, it is a war on our religious liberties and that violation of conscience that he would mandate that is un-American because it violates our First Amendment in our Constitution.
Governor Palin is indeed right. A recent CNN poll shows that approval of President Obama’s contraception mandate among women is only at 47% (46% of women opposed it, 7% have no opinion). While there is a 1% difference between approval and disapproval, this is within the 4.5% margin of error. In other words, not even a majority of women approve of the mandate, even though 85% surveyed in the poll approve  of the use of contraception.The issue is not contraception; it's the mandate. Governor Palin, who is not opposed to the use of contraception, recognizes the real issue at stake is individual liberty. Is it any wonder that our Founders not only placed the freedom of religion in the first amendment, they listed it first among the rights described in the first amendment? Would it not seem ludicrous if the federal government began to mandate Muslim grocers to sell pork or orthodox Jews to sell food that wasn’t kosher? Yet, this is the same principle that is being applied to the Catholic Church. President Obama’s supposed compromise puts the burden on insurance companies if an institution is opposed to contraception, but it is unsure how this affects many Catholic hospitals that self-insure. The head of the Catholic hospital system that governs the Catholic hospital in Springfield, Illinois has still “questions and concerns” about how this “compromise” will work.

  The Independent Women’s Forum notes, if this mandate were to be overturned, it would change nothing from how things currently operate where employers have the freedom to choose insurance plan options for their employees. As I argued earlier this week, if we had a health insurance system divorced from employment and based on the free market, it would provide the vehicle for individual freedom in general and religious freedom specifically. Is it any wonder why Governor Palin has recently been juxtaposing the 2012 political debate as one between the party of freedom vs. the party of government?

Governor Palin is not the only conservative politician who realizes what is truly at stake. Last week, Senator Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire spoke on the Senate floor in opposition to the mandate:


Today, during the Congressional hearing regarding the mandate, Congresswoman Ann Marie Buerkle noted:
"I really find it so objectionable," Buerkle said at a hearing of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. "This is a fundamental assault on all religions. It is an affront to each and every American…This is a fundamental assault on our First Amendment rights."
Contrary to Nancy Pelosi’s false assertions, there were female panelists who appeared during this hearing. What the GOP needs to realize is that they are winning the ideological battle, but they are struggling to win the messaging battle. Governor Palin has artfully framed the debate as a battle between freedom and government. Senator Ayotte and Rep. Buerkle have also realized the freedoms that is at stake. The Republican party would do well to realize that President Obama indeed does not recognize the wisdom of women, but a few ladies in their own party are quite wise and should serve as messengers of freedom.

Crossposted here and here.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Palin, Reagan, Thatcher, and the Political Second Coming of 1976

Today, February 11, 2012,  Governor Palin gave the closing address at CPAC. Today also marks 37 years since Margaret Thatcher was elected to be the head of British Conservative party ousting former Prime Minister Heath. That same year, 1975, Thatcher was given that leadership, Ronald Reagan gave his famous "bold colors, no pastels" speech to that year's CPAC convention. Three leaders whose principles and passion drive them, not their political party.

Governor Palin's barnburner of a speech hit on everything from her call to stand for life to highlighting how Obama's policies led to the MF Global's disastrous loss of billions of dollars of people's money to criticizing how the Obama administration is sharing nuclear intelligence with the Russian Kremlin . She carved out every leg of the stool.  She hit on the permanent political class who, rather than viewing Washington D.C. as a cesspool that needs drained, see Washington as a hot tub to lounge in. She called for not a red or a blue America, but a red, white, and blue America--unity against a president who is not trying to win the future, but lose our country. She also called for the presidential candidates to stick to the issues and to the need to replace President Obama in the issues. Perhaps drawing (in a bit of a softer way) from her recent Facebook post about the cannibalistic methods of GOP Establishment, Governor Palin called on the candidates to avoid the personal attacks and misrepresentations and lies of each other's records. There's no need for the Republican Party to become the political Donner party to only make the Democratic machine's job easier in the general election.

Any words I could type about this speech would not do Governor Palin justice. The best thing to do is watch it for yourself. There are some who, even after this speech, which required 4 overflow rooms to be open at the event with who knows how many watching at home, downplay Governor Palin's influence. There are some who say that if she was a real fighter she would have thrown her hat into the ring for 2012. However, Governor Palin's flame has not be snuffed out, as Adrienne Ross noted yesterday. She is still a fighter. None of the current presidential candidates went to Madison, Wisconsin in the midst of one of the fiercest reform battles in modern American history. None of the others stood with the Tea Party when we were essentially deemed accomplices to murder following the horrible Tucson shooting in January of 2011, yet Governor Palin did--even while she was the main target. Today, she stood with us fighting a two front ideological and strategic battle with both the GOP Establishment and the Left. Governor Palin has always stood with us, not in front of or behind us. She has spoken with us, not at us or to us. She has done so, not to score political points and not to gain political power. She has done so because it is who she is. She happily clings to principle; she doesn't bitterly cling to power. What you cling to is what guides you.

 Personally, I've always thought of Governor Palin has the political lovechild of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. Ronald Reagan's "bold colors, no pastels" speech came when he was not an office holder, nor had he launched his 1976 presidential campaign. Margaret Thatcher's position as head of the British Conservative party came when her party was in the minority. She wasn't running for prime minister at this time. In the timeline of conservative political history, so many have tried to correlate this year's upcoming election with that of 1980. While there is indeed a Jimmy Carter like figure in this election; there is not a Reagan like figure. While there are no perfect political parallels, perhaps this election year begs the question if  it is really the second 1980? Perhaps instead it is the second 1975-1976--when the conservatives in America and in Britain called their parties to be bold in their principles and in their foundation. After all, what good is a "big tent" if the tent pegs are driven into a mushy ground?  Conservatism is often described as a three legged stool, and indeed it is, but it's that stool won't hold together unless it is bound by the seat of character and the glue of the optimism and good humor. This is the principled bond of Thatcher, Reagan, and Palin. Because these principled leaders reasonated with so many people, they were often tried to be silenced by their critics. However, they all possessed that "glue" of optimism and good humor in the face of hecklers, as Rubegonia has captured in this clip of Palin's speech today and one of both Reagan's and Thatcher's speeches:


 Thank you, Governor, for being principled and passionate, and happy birthday!

Crossposted here and here.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

American Grizzlies United Highlights Danielle Rowe's Candidacy for Illinois State Representative

In her speech in Iowa last September, Governor Palin highlighted the need to take on the permanent political class—people who have turned public service into self service. This kind of permanent political class does not just exist in Washington D.C.. It is present in state houses and city halls all across this country. There are politicians who cling bitterly to power and influence without respecting the very people who they are supposed to serve. This kind of attitude is the very reason why we need to elect citizen candidates at every level of government—candidates who realize that they are servants, not masters of their constituents. This is the kind of candidate American Grizzlies United wants to highlight and support—candidates who believe in the sudden and relentless reform that Governor Palin enacted and espouses.

One such candidate is Danielle Rowe ,who is running for state representative in the 52nd District in Illinois. She is up against the permanent political class in Illinois—taking on an incumbent who first took office after being appointed by GOP bosses. She is committed to fiscal conservatism, reform, and free market principles in a state that desperately needs reform and fiscal sanity. Danielle shares her story in this statement to American Grizzlies United:
My name is Danielle Rowe, and I am a Republican candidate for Illinois State Representative in the 52nd District. I am a conservative leader and tea party activist who puts our country first, supports our troops and believes we need to take back our country at the local level. I have been endorsed by the Illinois Tea Party. I am the first state representative candidate ever endorsed by the Illinois Tea Party, and I am the first woman they have ever endorsed. But what makes me most proud of receiving a statewide endorsement from the tea party is that it is the people's endorsement. When you're supported by the tea party, you are supported by the people. 
I believe in the capacity for self-governance and that government is best when it's closest to the people. I was born in raised and the small town of Wauconda, which is the Native American word for "spirit water". I believe I can represent the spirit, principles and values of Sarah Palin in the Illinois General Assembly. I believe in American Exceptionalism. I believe in the principles that founded this country and that it's the people who have made this country exceptional, not our politicians. The principles that made this country great include faith, hard work, patriotism and public service. My strong work ethic and personal belief in faith, family and community began to take shape at a young age in working in our family construction business. I am proud of my commitment to organizing, planning and creating ways to better our community and support our troops. I was a key volunteer for the United States Marine Corps where I educated children about being respectful and honoring our veterans and country. I currently volunteer to support the families of active duty military men and women, the defenders of our freedom, and work with a group to help find them find jobs when they come home. It's the people in the community I serve who have urged me to run for office and challenge the political establishment. 
Sarah Palin is known as a reformer not afraid to take on the political establishment of both parties - which is exactly what I'm doing in Illinois. I am running against an incumbent Republican State Representative who was appointed to his seat by party bosses and a former Bank of America executive making his third run for political office. When Barack Obama ran for State Senate here in Illinois, he won his election by knocking all of his opponents off the ballot. One of my opponents tried the same tactic against me and my campaign. He thought he could use his vast personal wealth and resources to kick me off the ballot and bleed our campaign dry, but he was wrong. We were victorious because of our hard working team of volunteers who collected twice the number of required signatures to get on the ballot. I've earned my opportunity to be on the ballot and run for office, but I stood with Sarah Palin before I even thought about running. 
I stood with Governor Palin, Governor Scott Walker and Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch in Wisconsin. Not only did I travel to Madison to support Governor Walker and attend the rally Sarah Palin spoke at, but I returned to Wisconsin to work on the senate recall elections. We knew that if we stood together and Wisconsin passed their pension reform bill we could push to get needed reform done here in Illinois. Pension reform is one of the steps in my Rowe Roadmap to get Illinois moving in the right direction to economic revitalization. The roadmap includes: 
• Repeal the Democrat's Tax Increase 
• Reform Public Sector Pensions 
• Reduce Runaway State Spending and Borrowing 
• Restore a Business Climate that Respects the Entrepreneur and Bring Jobs Back to Illinois 
Jobs for Illinois is my number one priority as a state representative and energy independence is a key to that goal. I strongly advocate responsible drilling for oil and natural gas and providing proper stewardship of the people’s resources. I support an all-of-the-above approach to energy resource development: oil, natural gas, coal, nuclear, wind, geothermal, to sustain and grow our economy and keep and create more jobs. We need to keep our current energy forms until renewable forms of energy are more efficient, affordable, practical and able to meet our economy's energy needs. Another area where bold leadership is badly needed is entitlement reform. 
I agree with Sarah Palin. We owe it to our children and grandchildren to make tough decisions on entitlement reform so they might inherit a strong and prosperous America like the one we were given. We need to restructure Medicaid in Illinois, one of the most resource-intensive systems in state government. We should do a complete redetermination of our Medicaid rolls to remove persons the program was never intended to serve. 
I am pro-life, and I am the only consistently pro-life candidate in the state representative race in the 52nd District. Additionally, I believe that marriage is between one man and one woman. I am also a strong supporter of the Second Amendment and fully support the recent McDonald v. Chicago decision of the United States Supreme Court overturning Chicago's unconstitutional handgun ban. Illinois is the last state in the country that restricts their citizens' right to defend themselves by carrying a gun. I will go to Springfield to change that. 
It would be an honor to represent the spirit and principles of Sarah Palin in Springfield, Illinois. It is always a compliment to be compared to Sarah Palin and not just when I'm riding my ATV or my motorcycle. I recently spoke at an endorsement session for a conservative political action committee here in Illinois. After my presentation, one of the members of the committee remarked that I "sounded like Sarah Palin". One of my supporters on the committee replied, "Sarah Palin started out on the PTA, ran for city council, then mayor, then became Governor of the largest state in the union. If Danielle can start as State Representative and accomplish what Sarah Palin has, she's exactly who we need to support." 

                       Danielle Rowe, candidate for the Illinois state house, 
                    receives "grizzly support" while campaigning in January
If you would like to know how you can support Danielle’s campaign, please visit her website here. You can follow her on Twitter here and on Facebook here. Her primary election will be on Tuesday, March 20th.

Above image courtesy of Essex and Orange.

Crossposted from Illinois4Palin.