Archive for the ‘Jim DeMint’ Category


Saturday, November 13th, 2010
  • The Wall Street Journal
    • NOVEMBER 12, 2010

    Sen. Jim DeMint is offering Republicans a chance to prove they meant what they said on spending.


    • Senate Republicans ran to midterm victory last week hitting every single high note. One week in, they risk ruining the aria with some off-key grunge.

    What issue could prove so important that senators would risk blowing up the vision of a GOP unified against spending? Earmarks, of course. You know, the ugly little spending perks that have grown into one of Washington’s biggest political liabilities. The pork that earlier this year was unilaterally sworn off (to public praise) by House Republicans, who appear to be ready to do the same even in their new majority.

    In the Senate, not so much. South Carolina’s Jim DeMint is offering his party its first opportunity to prove it meant what it said, by offering up a moratorium on Republican senators’ earmarks. Fifteen GOP senators—including six senators-elect—are co-sponsoring the ban, which will get its vote on Tuesday. At least 13 Senate Republicans—spearheaded by Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Sen. Jim Inhofe—are going to the mat to keep the spending privileges. Twenty senators are apparently still mulling over the complex decision of whether to demonstrate some principle.

    And so, instead of the GOP leading the debate on spending freezes or ObamaCare, the newspapers and radio programs are filled with Mr. Inhofe declaring an “all out war” against those in his party trying to demonstrate some spending restraint. The Oklahoman, who is looking forward to the upcoming highway spending bill, went further to lament that so many Americans have become “brainwashed” on the earmark issue. That’s it. Blame the voters. It worked so well for Democrats.

    Instead of Republicans using their air time to pressure President Obama over taxes, they are using precious hours to explain why earmarks are good, moral, even a constitutional duty. Americans are told, on the one hand, that earmarks are too small a budget item to merit this much attention yet, on the other hand, are too important for funding big, vital projects to relinquish. Untangle that one. Another favorite is that the earmark debate is siphoning attention away from more “serious” budget debates. Because Republicans can’t walk and chew gum at the same time?

    Instead of the GOP giving its grass-roots something to cheer about, it has created its first fault line. The antagonized Tea Party Patriots, an umbrella group, has now sent out an email to 134,000 members urging them to do “battle” with a Republican Senate. The conservative blogs are already slamming the party.

    Sen. Jim DeMint is offering Republicans a chance to prove they meant what they said on spending.




    Friday, November 12th, 2010

    Published on The Weekly Standard (

    Stephen F. Hayes

    November 11, 2010 4:45 PM

    Ben Smith has a good piece on John Thune’s vulnerabilities as a 2012 presidential candidate. Smith’s post raises the central question: Is Thune too “establishment” for the current political environment?

    That question is surfacing well before the start of real 2012 policy jockeying thanks to an effort by Senator Jim DeMint to reinvigorate his push for a moratorium on earmarks. DeMint is pushing for a vote on the moratorium next week. Several of his colleagues in the GOP caucus, including some of its leaders, are pushing back. And Senator Jim Inhofe, the conservative from Oklahoma, after “weeks of planning,” is launching a “campaign” to save earmarks, according to an article in the Tulsa World.

    Some of the opposition to DeMint’s proposal is pro-earmark. Some of it is anti-DeMint. The net result is something even the most optimistic Democratic strategists could not have imagined: One week after Republicans scored historic victories in the 2010 mid-term elections thanks to growing concern about the size and scope of government, prominent Republicans are spending their time and resources defending earmarks – often in public.

    THE WEEKLY STANDARD is contacting Senate offices in an effort to put together a running tally of support for DeMint’s moratorium. The response so far is not encouraging. Some offices have not responded to our inquiries and several others have provided only vague statements about earmarks.

    John Thune is in a tough spot. He has been a defender of earmarks but also a supporter of an earmark moratorium. In an interview with me in August, he specifically mentioned “the DeMint amendment” and reiterated his support for it. “I think we ought to completely stop it for a while and figure out what we’re going to do,” said Thune. (more…)



    Thursday, November 4th, 2010
    • The Wall Street Journal
    • NOVEMBER 3, 2010

    Welcome, Senate Conservatives

    Remember what the voters back home want—less government and more freedom.


    Congratulations to all the tea party-backed candidates who overcame a determined, partisan opposition to win their elections. The next campaign begins today. Because you must now overcome determined party insiders if this nation is going to be spared from fiscal disaster.

    Many of the people who will be welcoming the new class of Senate conservatives to Washington never wanted you here in the first place. The establishment is much more likely to try to buy off your votes than to buy into your limited-government philosophy. Consider what former GOP senator-turned-lobbyist Trent Lott told the Washington Post earlier this year: “As soon as they get here, we need to co-opt them.” (more…)

    Search All Posts