Posts Tagged ‘McCain’

21st July
2015
written by Sean Noble

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On November 1, 1950, the 3d Battalion, 8th Calvary Regiment, 1st Calvary Division fought back a vicious onslaught of Chinese Communist forces in Unsan Korea. Though repelled, the enemy soon surrounded them. Those Americans still able to do so were ordered to evacuate.

Captain Emil Kapaun, a Catholic chaplain who courageously ministered to the men throughout the battle, “elected to stay behind,” reads his Medal of Honor Citation, “fully aware of his certain capture.” After his capture, “Chaplain Kapaun…bravely pushed aside an enemy soldier preparing to execute Sergeant First Class Herbert A. Miller. Not only did Chaplain Kapaun’s gallantry save the life of Sergeant Miller, but also his unparalleled courage and leadership inspired all those present.” Kapaun and the other POWs were marched 80 miles, in the Tiger Death March, to a prison camp.

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(Emil Kapuan)

In the camp, Kapaun continued his selfless service, ministering to the men, stealing food, and lifting spirits. “People had lost a great deal of their civility,” a fellow POW told the Washington Post, “…and here is this one man—in all of this chaos—who has kept his principles.” Kapaun died in captivity on May 23, 1951.

“He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren’t captured.” Donald Trump recently told an audience in Ames, Iowa. He was referring to Senator John McCain, but his comments could just as easily have applied to Chaplain Kapaun; or Doug Hegdahl, a young POW during Vietnam who convinced his captors that he was stupid and posed no threat, then proceeded to memorize—to the tune of “Old McDonald”——the names of his over 200 fellow POW’s. Granted an early release, which he was ordered to accept by an American officer being held with him, Hegdahl provided to the American government the names of all the POWs held at the camp along with other invaluable information. Trump could have been talking about Jeremiah Denton, who used a televised Vietnamese propaganda press conference to confirm to the US that he and other American prisoners were being tortured by blinking, in Morse Code, T-O-R-T-U-R-E repeatedly. Trumps comments could be applied to Louis Zamperini, the Olympian-turned-bombardier who refused to allow the brutal treatment by his Japanese captors to break him, demonstrating to all the resolve and strength of the American spirit.

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(Louis Zamperini)

We know all of these men, because they were captured. But it is their heroism, their dignity, and their perpetual dedication to our nation, in the face of terrifying, excruciating conditions that we honor when we call them heroes. Mr. Trump’s failure to understand this disqualifies him to serve as Commander-in-Chief.

In the days following his senseless remarks, Trump’s response to the backlash has revealed much about his character: he is an immature, wannabe bully. He doubled down and tried to claim that his comments have been taken out of context. Saying, “People who fought hard and weren’t captured and went through a lot, they get no credit. Nobody even talks about them; they’re, like, forgotten.” Honoring John McCain does not mean that John Basilone, Audie Murphy, Riley Pitts, Dakota Meyers, Michael Murphy, Ross McGinnis, or countless other heroes do not receive appropriate recognition. There is not a finite amount of honor; celebrating one heroic act does not detract from another.

Trump also said, “I used to like [McCain] a lot. I supported him…but I would love to see him do a much better job taking care of the veterans.” After 5 and a half years of unimaginable pain and torture in service to America and her military, John McCain has paid in full. Anything else that he does is above and beyond. And certainly, someone like Donald Trump who, while John McCain languished in prison was, as the Washington Post pointed out, “living large…He ate in New York City’s finest restaurants, rode in his father’s limousines and began hitting the clubs with beautiful women,” is certainly in no position to demand more of the senator.

Trump’s best excuse for this attack on John McCain is that McCain attacked him—basically, Trump is whining “he started it.” Thin skin and a bad attitude is not going to turn Washington around, after all that’s what we’ve had for the past six years. Republican primary voters owe America—and certainly America’s service members—a better candidate than Donald Trump. It’s time for him to go.

 

9th March
2010
written by Sean Noble

Arizona Republic reporter Dan Nowicki writes that Senators John McCain and Jon Kyl oppose the sales tax increase that the legislature referred to the May 18 election ballot.

I’m not surprised. Both McCain and Kyl have been pretty darn solid on not raising taxes.

What is more surprising, as I have blogged before, is that a Republican Governor is supporting a tax increase, particularly in this economic environment.

Predictably, the Yes on 100 crowd “couldn’t be more disappointed.”

Eh, what do you expect? Did you really think that two Senators with fairly consistent “A” ratings from National Taxpayer’s Union would support a tax increase?

18th June
2009
written by Sean Noble

As I have pointed out before, Greg Patterson over at espressopundit is a really smart guy and has a great, great blog.

But he needs to put the crack pipe down and rethink what he wrote here:

The new schism in the Republican party is not Conservative or Moderate, it’s Conservatives who are part of the establishment versus conservatives who are part of the resistance and it looks to me like McCain, and to a lessor extent even Shadegg and Brewer, are vulnerable in Republican Primaries.

McCain vulnerable in a primary?  Maybe.  Depends a lot on who it is.

Brewer vulnerable in primary?  Uh, oh yeah – you know, the whole demanding a tax increase thing?  Yes, Greg, Brewer is vulnerable, very, very vulnerable.  No “lessor extent” about it.

Shadegg vulnerable in a primary?  What are you smoking?  Seriously.  Yes, McCain has not been the most solid of conservatives – you know, campaign finance, global warming, and, you know, immigration.  Yes, Brewer is following in George H.W. Bush’s footsteps.  But Shadegg?

This is a guy that conservatives (you know, like, Mike Pence, Tom Tancredo, Duncan Hunter, Ron Paul, et al.) begged to stay in Congress when he announced retirement last year.  This is a guy who consistently ranks among the most conservative in the U.S. House by Club for Growth, National Taxpayer’s Union, American Conservative Union and Americans for Tax Reform among others.

If the argument is that some elected officials are potentially vulnerable because they are not conservative enough, then I get it.  But saying that Shadegg isn’t conservative enough is a little bizarre.

17th June
2009
written by Sean Noble

Sen. John McCain is buying a Ford Fusion Hybrid to replace his Cadillac in Washington, D.C.

Now, a politician buying a car really isn’t news, is it?  And is it really news that McCain is buying a hybrid?

The most intriguing part of the whole story was this:

The Arizona senator said on his Twitter feed Monday…

McCain twitters?!?  Now that’s news.  Hit me anytime @snoble37, Senator.

29th May
2009
written by Sean Noble

The Arizona Guardian is breaking yet another story on a GOP operative in trouble with the law.  This one is a staffer for Senator John McCain, Carlos Sierra, who has a couple DUI’s and speeding violations.

So we’ve had the AZ GOP Executive Director Brett Mecum arrested a couple weeks ago, and now this.  My guess is that McCain will NOT follow Pullen’s example and actually show Sierra the door.

Updated: McCain staffer wanted by Phoenix authorities

Friday, 29 May 2009 18:17 Dennis Welch

 

By Dennis Welch
The Arizona Guardian

Phoenix authorities have issued arrest warrants for a staff assistant to U.S. Sen. John McCain who is accused of skipping two court appearances on separate DUI charges this year.

Carlos Sierra, who works at McCain’s regional office in Tempe, was arrested twice within a five-week period on suspicion of DUI, according to records from Phoenix Municipal Court.

Each time, the court records show, Sierra didn’t show up for his assigned court date.

Sierra, 27, says there must be a mix-up because he thought his attorney took care of the matter. He declined to release the name of his lawyer.

“I haven’t received any notices in the mail,” Sierra said Friday during a phone interview. “My lawyer told me he took care of it and I believe him.”

Officials with the court said it was possible the case was resolved and the paperwork hasn’t been changed. But as of Friday afternoon, they said, the arrest warrants were still live and there are no records indicating Sierra and his attorney fixed the legal problem.

McCain’s office wasn’t waiting to find out.

“The matter is currently under review,” said McCain spokeswoman Brooke Buchanan. “However, he has been suspended immediately.”

Sierra was first arrested about 2 a.m. March 28 on suspicion of DUI after Phoenix police clocked him going 60 mph in a 35 mph zone near Missouri and 14th Street. Sierra, who drives black, 2006 four-door Cadillac, also is accused of running a red light.

Records do not show exactly what his blood alcohol content was at the time of the arrest, only that it was more than .08, which is the legal limit.

Phoenix police arrested Sierra again about 9 p.m. May 2, this time for the more serious accusation of extreme DUI, according to court records. Once again, documents don’t say precisely what his blood alcohol level was at the time, only that it exceeded .20.

In addition to the DUI, Sierra is accused of driving 60 mph in a 40 mph stretch near 24th Street and Camelback Road. Phoenix police also cited him for not having proof of insurance or registration and driving on the sidewalk.

Although Sierra listed on a Phoenix police report that he was employed by the U.S. Senate when he was first arrested, he told authorities he was unemployed when he was arrested the second time.

Officials at McCain’s offices in Phoenix and Tempe on Friday confirmed he still works for the Arizona senator and former presidential contender. When asked about this discrepancy, Sierra declined to comment.

27th March
2009
written by Sean Noble

Maybe it’s because it is really late at night as I write this, or it’s because I have been really, really busy and not able to focus, but this story is really confusing to me.  I mean, talk about something right out of the twilight zone.  Things are not as they appear, or just the opposite of what you would expect.

The Hill has a story headlined “Napolitano says thanks, but no thanks, DHS has funds” and then reports on a Senate hearing about border security.  Here is a quick synopsis.

Chairman Lieberman (D-CT) said he requested $380 million for enhanced border protection.  But Napolitano said that she had already found the money within the agency to make sure such enhancements are “budget neutral.”

Senator McCain jumped into the discussion and suggested that Napolitano take the money.  She said she didn’t need it – that we are in difficult times and need to make do with current funds.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) jumped in and criticized Napolitano for not taking the money and said that he would support sending military to the border to deal with the drug cartel violence.

Lieberman concluded saying that he was going to work to get more funding whether Napolitano thought she needed it or not.  “This is kind of war,” he said referring to the border violence.

So let me get this straight, the Chairman of the committee says he is requesting more money for border security, he is supported in that by two Republican Senators (whose position on immigration is no secret) and Napolitano says, no, wouldn’t be prudent.

I only have one question: Where in the h*** was this prudent, fiscal responsibility from Napolitano when she was the Governor?!?!?

3rd March
2009
written by Sean Noble

My family was getting ready for a game night.  My oldest son, Adam, had been acting like a typical three-year-old (even though he is about to turn 10) and was sent to his room.  My wife decided that she would have the other kids vote on whether to allow Adam to come back down and play.  Seven-year-old Jenna immediately blurted, “I vote for Adam.”  My wife then asked five-year-old Kate how she voted, to which she responded, “I vote McCain.”

I love that my kids paid enough attention this last election cycle to even answer in that way.  It struck me, with what Obama has done so far with the stimulus bill, his housing bill, his proposed budget, and what has happened to the stock market – now under 7,000, and down 1,200 since Obama’s inauguration – I think there are a lot of people thinking, “I vote for McCain.”

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19th January
2009
written by Sean Noble

Last Friday, the Yellow Sheet Report, which is the equivalent of an “inside the beltway publication” for the Arizona capital, reported that Arizona GOP Chairman Randy Pullen claimed that the Arizona Delegation was “neutral” in his race against Lisa James for Chairman.  Huh?

I’ve known Randy for a number of years, and we have a cordial relationship, and, just as I have said to newly-elected Maricopa County GOP Chairman, Rob Haney, if Pullen is reelected, I’ll work on finding common ground.  In the meantime, I strongly support Lisa James.

But even as a James partisan, I’m taken aback by Pullen’s comment.  It’s a whopper so big that it isn’t even remotely believable.  Usually, if you are going to push the envelope, you at least have an envelope to push.   What mystifies me is why Pullen would say something so demonstrably inaccurate.

McCain, Kyl, Shadegg and Flake have been open about their support for Lisa James, and Trent Franks is officially neutral.  So maybe Pullen believes that Franks is the entire delegation.

Yesterday, Lisa James put out a statement from Kyl:

“I support Lisa James for Chairman of the Arizona Republican Party because she will provide the leadership to increase Republican voter registration, raise funds, recruit candidates and execute a successful get out the vote effort.”

I second Senator Kyl’s comments.  I have seen Lisa in action, and know her capabilities. I’ve done enough major get-out-the-vote efforts, fundraising, grassroots organizing and messaging to recognize who gets it and who doesn’t. 

Lisa James gets it, and would be a great asset as GOP Chairman going into the 2010 election.

18th January
2009
written by Sean Noble

Following the 2004 election, President Bush launched an effort to reform Social Security.  It has been an article of faith for conservatives since Barry Goldwater wrote “The Conscience Of A Conservative” that Social Security is destined to failure.  Goldwater’s position was particularly courageous, given that insolvency was still decades away.

Bush knew that the future obligations of Social Security would far outstrip ability to pay with millions of baby boomers beginning to retire in the next few years.  As those boomers retire, the spending obligations will drive our country further and further into unfathomable debt.  It’s not like we can’t see this coming.  When Social Security was created, there were literally dozens of workers paying into the system for every person receiving benefits.  That ratio is now three workers for each retiree and it will soon be two workers per retiree.

Unfortunately, Democrats have used the scare tactic of Republicans wanting to destroy Social Security in every election since 1964, making substantive reform politically impossible.  There is a reason Social Security has been called the third rail of politics.

So it was very interesting when, in his final press conference, Bush said, “I believe that running the Social Security idea right after the ’04 elections was a mistake. I should have argued for immigration reform.”

Consider how different that last four years would have been had Bush pushed for immigration reform right after the 2004 election.  First, Bush had a strong showing at the polls on Election Day 2004, so while he may not have had a “mandate” he clearly was in a strong position to push an agenda.  In fact, pundits figured he had enough mojo to push Social Security reform. 

Had Bush picked immigration reform, conservatives would have had a larger role in crafting the bill, and avoided some of the most divisive rhetoric that has created so much angst among party faithful. 

Democrats would have been much more likely to work with Bush on immigration reform than on Social Security, and giving Bush a success on a bipartisan issue.

And, how would that have changed the overall make-up of the Presidential race?  I’d venture to speculate that had Bush successfully shepherded immigration reform through Congress, the tone in Washington would have been much different, and we would not have had Obama even in the primary.  It is clear that the anti-Bush crowd was the driver on Obama, and had that been tempered, we may have seen a McCain/Clinton general and it would be McCain getting sworn in as the 44th President on Tuesday.

This is the kind of mental exercise that makes me wish I could see the parallel universe.