I Was Wrong About The Election Of Donald Trump

Trump Victory

First, I must say I am very relieved that Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton. There certainly is a delicious pleasure in that victory.

Now, let me get the mea culpa out of the way.

Like many of my colleagues in the professional political consulting class, I was wrong about the election of Donald Trump.

Nearly every polls showed him losing – the pollsters were wrong.

Every time Donald Trump spoke, he polarized and divided groups of individuals. The public relations professionals were wrong.

Nearly every longtime Republican and conservative leader said he couldn’t win using his strategy. They were wrong.

I repeatedly said he needed to learn from the lessons of 2012 when it comes to millennials, women and minority groups and affirm their libertarian and conservative values. The leader of the Grand Old Party needs to pursue a mathematical strategy of addition and multiplication rather than subtraction and division if they want to grow the party. Apparently, there was some “new math” at work in this election.

During the last days of the election, I believed it came down which demographic groups would turn out for Donald Trump. Would women, Latinos and millennials overcome the intensity of angry, aging, white, blue-collar Americans? Donald Trump obviously heard the voices of the latter and hit a nerve.

Donald Trump managed to pull off one of the biggest political shocks in American electoral history and we, the political consulting class were wrong.

But while we may remain wrong on why Donald Trump got elected as our 45th President, we may very well be right about our earlier concerns.

Donald Trump has “caught the bus” and must now grasp the sobering reality of governance.

He must now surround himself with individuals who will help him with the gargantuan task of running the country. Those individuals will most likely come from the establishment. Newt Gingrich, Rudy Giuliani, Jeff Sessions, Chris Christie – all longtime Washington insiders and dare I note, members of the very “Establishment” class Donald Trump publicly excoriated. Will Trump’s die-hard supporters give him a pass over these selections? (Queue up “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.)

There are also the thousands of executive staff Trump will need to replace. Will he pull from the thousands of individuals with Washington experience who work as lobbyists, hill staffers and interest groups to fill those positions? Or will he bring in new blood from the heartland? I believe the former. Do you see where I’m going with this?

If President Trump truly wants to be successful, he needs experienced talent and there’s really only one pool to pull talented individuals – the establishment.

Candidate Donald Trump promised an agenda to make America great again during the campaign. Can President Donald Trump deliver on those promises? I believe he’s going to find it harder than he expected.

Do we really believe President Trump will be able to build an impenetrable wall along the southern border and make Mexico pay for it? Will President Trump sign an executive order banning all Muslims from entering the country? Can we expect President Trump to tear up NAFTA in one swift move?

His establishment cabinet and advisers are about to tell him just how hard governing really is.

The reality is President Trump has nothing to fear from the political left. He’s survived that battle and won. The real threat to a Trump administration is from those who wanted to burn Washington down. We’re about to find out how assimilated Donald Trump will become to the swamp he wants to drain.

Ted Cruz may prove right about Donald Trump’s northeastern values and mid-westerners may not be happy.

There is much to be hopeful and excited about however.

Republicans now control Washington, DC. Let me say that again. Republicans now control the Executive and Legislative branches of government. This is huge!

President Trump and the Republican Congress have a critical time frame to accomplish as much as possible and that starts with securing as much of the Judicial branch of government as possible.

The first 100 days of a Trump Administration means cleaning up the mess from the last eight and even 16 years. The Republican congress finally has a President who will not veto a repeal of the Affordable Care Act. They need to drop that bill on Day 1.

President Trump has other monumental tasks that he can single-handily accomplish: rescinding the hundreds of executive orders of Barack Obama; tearing up the Iran Deal; changing leadership and overhauling the VA; reigning in the powers of the many regulatory agencies, and restoring morale among the men and women of our military branches. It’s a lot to do and he should not meet any resistance from a Republican Congress. In this area, he not only needs to be assertive. President Trump needs to be aggressive.

Getting the “relatively easy” tasks done quickly will allow President Trump to focus on his more long-term and ongoing agenda such as restoring the courts; protecting religious freedom; repealing Dodd-Frank; reorienting energy policy; rebuilding the military; reforming immigration; improving national infrastructure and improving international trade relations.

Finally, President Trump needs to avoid picking fights with Congress over politics. There is no time to waste on grudges or personality conflicts. The American people want major action and no drama. These types of antics will only send the GOP down a box canyon where they will be massacred in the 2018 mid-term elections.

While I was wrong about the election of Donald Trump, I hope I’m not wrong about President Trump. Like many movement conservatives, I will remain steadfast on principles and policy and speak up when I believe his administration is wrong.

Donald Trump deserves our congratulations, prayers and well-wishes. He has been chosen to carry out the single-most powerful job in the world and we must support him as the leader of the free world.

Congratulations President-Elect Donald Trump.

 

Martha McSally Releases Two New Ads in CD-2

As the General Election approaches, Republican Congresswoman Martha McSally has released two new ads in the race for Arizona’s Second Congressional District.

In her ad, “John Ladd,” longtime southern Arizona rancher, John Ladd, gives his personal testimony why voters should support Col Martha McSally. “[she’s] trying to get the border secured. She brought the first and biggest delegation from Homeland Security down here last year. Nobody ever did that before… She is leading the charge in Washington right now.”

Here’s the video for the ad:

In her second ad, “Helen,” World War II veteran Helen Anderson tells her story of service in the Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service (WAVEs), where she serviced combat planes. Ms. Anderson says she joined the Navy for patriotism. Anderson notes that she is “extremely proud that Martha McSally can represent women veterans and veterans as a whole. It’s not just lip service, it’s actual service. She puts her whole heart and soul into it and that’s the reason I support Martha McSally.”

You can view “Helen” here:

Martha McSally will face off against liberal Democrat Dr. Matt Heinz in the General Election.

Wendy Rogers to Paul Babeu: Come Clean to Pinal County

Wendy Rogers

Wendy Rogers to Paul Babeu: Come Clean to Pinal County

(Flagstaff, AZ) – Today, Col. Wendy Rogers, Republican candidate for Congress, issued the following statement calling on Sheriff Paul Babeu to make amends to the citizens of Pinal County for using his position to play politics:

“Sheriff Babeu displayed a profound lack of judgment. He showed poor faith and a callous disregard for the people of Pinal County and the 1st Congressional District.” Col Rogers said.

“Mere hours after warning the citizens of Pinal County about a grave threat to their safety from Mexican cartels on local television, Sheriff Babeu sent out a fundraising email to capitalize on the threat. Then Sheriff Babeu later admitted to a reporter that his warning was a calculated element of his campaign for Congress.”

“For an elected official, especially a member of law enforcement, to prey upon the fears of good people to advance his own political agenda is absolutely base and reprehensible. He exploits as a political football the very citizens he swore to protect. Sheriff Babeu must atone and come clean to the people of Pinal County.”

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Lt Col (ret) Wendy Rogers was one of the Air Force’s first women pilots. She and and her husband Hal are both retired career US Air Force officers. Since 1997, they’ve owned a home inspection business covering four counties spanning northern to southern Arizona. Col Rogers is a businesswoman, teacher, social worker and grandmother. She and Hal own their retirement home in the midst of where they do business in Flagstaff, Arizona.

SheriffCandidateBabeu

Fear and Fundraising in AZ01

Elected law enforcement officials are in the precarious position of approaching their job from either a half-empty or a half-full position. As we’ve seen from many a sheriff, fear is a tremendous motivator when it comes to driving an agenda. Some sheriffs might cast their office as the object to be feared. Other sheriffs cast the outside world as the source of all danger.

The latter is what we witnessed in the public arena from Sheriff Paul Babeu on Tuesday.

Babeu Press Conference

In a press conference (which turned into a political speech), Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu claimed he has “additional intelligence” that Mexican hit men or “sicarios” were heading into Arizona to assassinate rival drug cartel members. Those attacks would likely take place over Memorial Day weekend. He cited several incidents south of Pinal County and advised campers and hikers to be fully armed and prepared to protect themselves. The press conference turned political when Babeu blamed the Obama Administration for not protecting our southern border (a point we agree on).

Sicario

Members of the media immediately picked up on the sheriff’s advisory and ran with stories of impending threats and attacks to American citizens in the Arizona desert. Several media outlets didn’t quite take the bait (KTAR, KPNX)

What was barely mentioned was that hours after the warning, congressional candidate Paul Babeu sent out a fundraising letter mentioning his press conference and advisory. The timing couldn’t be more obvious: Fear is a tremendous motivator for fundraising.

Babeu even appeared on Your World with Neil Cavuto talking up the threat and danger of Mexican assassins running rampant through the Arizona desert.

Babeu Cavuto

Photo courtesy of Paul Babeu’s Twitter feed.

[pullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]The timing couldn’t be more obvious: Fear is a tremendous motivator for fundraising.[/pullquote]

Some of us aren’t buying Sheriff Babeu’s ploy. Here’s why:

First, any threat of this nature would be announced from the Department of Homeland Security, FBI, Border Patrol and Arizona Department of Public Safety. When a threat is this serious and credible, it is vetted at all levels of government and is passed through multiple chains of command and communications. Governor Doug Ducey would be one of the first to know and to issue warnings through Arizona DPS. The Sheriff claims he was informed about the threat but failed to share it with other law enforcement agencies?

Second, Paul Babeu is a candidate for congress running on a single-issue – immigration and border security. Even though Pinal county does not border Mexico, illegal border crossers still make their way through his jurisdiction – just like they do in every other county in Arizona. We certainly won’t disagree that immigration and border security has become a national security issue we should take seriously, but some politicians have used the issue as a fear-for-votes political strategy. For Paul Babeu, it’s the only issue he knows and he’s using it at every opportunity for pure political gain. Multiple media appearances and fundraising letters from Babeu are evidence of this.

Finally, in law enforcement matters, every serious credible threat demands a serious credible response or action plan. According to reports, during his press conference, Sheriff Babeu made no request for assistance from the Governor’s office, Arizona DPS, Homeland Security, the National Guard, the FBI, etc. Instead, he told private citizens to arm themselves. A review of several Arizona law enforcement agency websites including the Governor’s office, shows no mention of public safety threats by sicarios in the Arizona desert.

We’re not buying it.

The truth is, we have a county sheriff running for Congress who is sensationalizing on the only issue he knows in order to grab media attention and raise money for his political campaign.

In the meantime, private citizens have been told to pack heat in the badlands of Arizona by a sheriff who apparently is finding it difficult to protect his own constituents.

This Memorial Day weekend, we recommend being vigilant of all threats – whether they’re credible or presented for pure political profit.

But most importantly, we ask that you remember and honor those, who against all fear and personal gain, paid the ultimate price through their selfless sacrifice to protect and preserve our freedoms.

Reps Franks, Schweikert, Salmon, McSally Vote to Fund Obama’s Executive Amnesty

gop_surrender_monkey_1_400_pxlw The House has voted 257-167 to pass what the Leftist media is calling a ‘Clean’ DHS Funding Bill which fully funds Obama’s unconstitutional Executive Amnesty.   While the majority of the 257 Congressmen and women who passed the bill were Democrats, this falls on the feet of all those who voted to retain John Boehner as the Speaker of the House.

It was only a few months ago that hundreds of thousands of Americans jammed the US Capitol’s switchboard demanding a change in house leadership due to Boehner’s unwillingness to stop Obama’s move toward ‘fundamental transformation’. These calls and emails were ignored by establishment Republicans namely Rep Trent Franks, Rep Schweikert, Rep Matt Salmon, and Rep Martha McSally who chose Boehner’s PAC money over the American tax-payers.  For several years now these same politicians have told us at LD meetings or Tea Party rallies that ‘DC is broken’ and they need our support.  Well, to borrow a phrase from Pottery Barn, ‘you broke it, you bought it’.

By keeping the current leadership in place these Republicans are just as responsible for the passage of today’s Amnesty funding bill just as much those who actively lobbied for it. We’ll say it again for clarity; Mr Franks, Mr Schweikert, Mr Salmon, Mrs McSally, You. Own. This. Crap. Sandwich.

How do we make the claim these four voted for Obama’s Amnesty?  To know this, you must learn one of the procedural games the GOP Leadership play all too often:

    INSIDE BASEBALL: HOW DC PLAYS YOU

The House Leadership forwards whatever the Chamber of Commerce wants while simultaneously trying to pacify the base.  That’s where things like the pointless ACU ‘scores’ come in to play.  Let’s take today’s vote for example:

  • STAGE 1 – THE DISTRACTION: Boehner decides in mid Feb that this bill should be postponed until today during the fog of Netanyahu’s speech in order to mitigate the number of grassroots phone-calls to DC offices.  They are betting that we’d be too distracted fighting the Anti-Semites on the Left today.
  • STAGE 2 – THE BROKEN PROMISE: Knowing that he could not get the support of a majority of Republicans, he strikes a deal with Pelosi for a Clean Bill in violation of his Hastert Rule promise.
  • STAGE 3 – QUID PRO QUO: After a backroom deal is struck with the Dems, Boehner creates a strategy with Pelosi to use ‘regular order’ to ensure the bill gets passed in spite of the results of the 2014 elections.
  • STAGE 4 – WHIPPING UP SUPPORT: Pelosi then dispatches House Dem Whips to do a head count to ensure Boehner gets the votes to pass Obama’s Amnesty without GOP support.  Pelosi tells Boehner they have votes needed plus a little extra for padding
  • STAGE 5 – THE SHOW VOTE: GOP Leadership calls a closed-door conference to give border hawks the green light on voting ‘NO’ knowing it will pass anyway.  This way the Leadership/Chamber gets what they want and the faux-Conservatives keep their bona fides among the grassroots come election time.
  • STAGE 6 – RIGGING THE NUMBERS: The ‘Border Hawks’ vote NO knowing they can do so without jeopardizing Boehner’s plan.  It’s little more than a show vote done so representatives can be graded on a single vote as ‘SOLID’ and be able to tout their valued ACU/Club For Growth, FreedomWorks/Whatever org scores in campaign ads while screwing the American tax-payer under the radar. We now know that it is far worse to support a Speaker who does this than a faux-NO vote on a bill that has been predetermined by the donor class to pass.
  • STAGE 7 – THE BAIT & SWITCH: Come election time, they tell us that they voted AGAINST Amnesty and that we NEED them to stay in DC to ‘fight for us’, with the truth being that nothing will change while they remain in DC.  This is precisely how someone like John McCain can serve (themselves) in office for decades as things get worse.

The well-fed right will state “THIS HEADLINE IS DISHONEST! Schweikert, Franks, et al actually voted against this bill, blah.. blah.. blah…” but in reality, now that we know similar parliamentary tricks were practiced with regularity under Speaker Boehner before his reelection in January and since these representatives voted to retain GOP leadership, it’s reasonable to conclude those who backed Boehner for Speaker approve of these tactics and the results. Therefore, we at ArizonaInformer will now score EVERY unpopular bill that Speaker Boehner passes from the floor and will publicize them as a YES vote for the Representatives mentioned above.

Governor Brewer Calls President Obama A ‘Failed President’

FoxNews has posted an interview with outgoing Governor Brewer in which she assesses President Obama’s performance as a ‘failed president.’

In the interview, conducted by FoxNews correspondent William La Jeunesse, Brewer calls Obama a ‘very big disappointment’ and ‘thin-skinned.’

She recalls the January, 2012 encounter in which she and the President had words on the tarmac at Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport. During that confrontation, Obama voiced his objection to Brewer’s presentation of him in her book Scorpions for Breakfast. When Brewer asked Obama why the federal government continued to fail in protecting Arizona’s border, Obama rudely walked away from her. The desert dust-up video went viral and made Governor Brewer a hero with conservatives.

The interview further summarizes Brewer’s battle with the federal government and judges over SB1070 and issuing driver’s licenses to DREAMers.

When La Jeunesse brings up critics allegation of racism, Brewer responds, “Those of us born and raised in the southwest are not racists. Those people are our neighbors. We go to church with us. Their children go to school. They marry into our families. This has nothing to do with racism. The bottom line is the rule of law and what it is doing to our country.” 

Brewer is also asked about states rights and her battle against Obamacare in the courts and weighs this against conservative criticism of her expansion of Obamacare’s Medicaid $2 billion program in Arizona. When confronted by La Jeunesse about the hypocrisy of taking a federal handout, she replies, “We have to have our hand out and accept those dollars because a lot of those things we’re delivering services for are mandated on the State of Arizona.”

Finally, the media clip features an assessment by long-time Arizona political journalist Howard Fischer who refers to Brewer as a “political animal.”

Here’s the entire interview:

Ann Kirkpatrick Repeatedly Picks Party Over National Security

Andy Tobin

Whether it’s transferring terrorists to U.S. soil or extending rights to foreign combatants, Kirkpatrick votes the party line. 

As the War on Terror continues in the Middle East against the Islamic State and other terrorist groups, Arizonans are looking for their representatives in Congress to do everything they can to keep them safe and secure back home.

In Washington, Ann Kirkpatrick chooses to secure the party line instead.

When it came time to choose between defending President Obama or making a statement about America’s security priorities, Kirkpatrick chose to defend the President when she voted against condemning him for breaking the law with the Bowe Bergdahl prisoner transfer. (Roll Call #485, 9/9/2014)

When Nancy Pelosi asked her to, Kirkpatrick voted to allow the transfer of terrorist detainees from Guantanamo Bay to American soil. (Roll Call #254, 5/30/14)

She even voted to extend Constitutional rights to foreign terrorists who are not U.S. Citizens captured within the United States. (Roll Call #228, 6/13/2013)

“Ann Kirkpatrick has had plenty of opportunities to prove her commitment to national security, but time and time again she votes with Nancy Pelosi and President Obama, even when its against Arizona’s interests,” Tobin campaign manager Bill Cortese said in a statement. “With everything going on abroad, Arizonans deserve to know why Kirkpatrick wants Guantanamo Bay detainees to be transferred and tried within the United States and why she wants to extend Constitutional rights to foreign terrorists.”

NRCC Launches New Ads in Arizona’s CD-1 and CD-2

Two new ads just launched in Arizona’s first and second congressional districts. The National Republican Congressional Committee posted these on their independent expenditure YouTube channel. We thought you’d appreciate them.

Also note that Republicans are now messaging a strong national security theme with voters.

First the AZ01 ad:

And the AZ02 ad:

The Shocking Link Between Tom Horne and An Alleged Fast & Furious Co-Conspirator

Campaign finance reports occasionally reveal a donation or two that can place a political candidate in the awkward position of having to defend a donor. Oftentimes the candidate is unaware of the controversy until notified by a persistent pesky reporter or the opposing campaigns.

However, it’s also not often that a donor rises to the level of being at the center of what many believe is the biggest scandal of the scandal-plagued Obama administration.

Once such donation is to Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne, who accepted a political contribution of $500 from Patrick Cunningham on February 13, 2014. If Cunningham’s name sounds familiar it’s because he was named as a co-conspirator in the Fast and Furious scandal.

The Chair of the House committee that investigated the Fast and Furious scandal, Congressman Darrell Issa, went as far as to say that “Mr. Cunningham may have engaged in criminal conduct with respect to Fast and Furious…” and that his refusal to testify before congress was a “…major escalation of the department’s culpability.”

Justice Department officials even claimed Cunningham misinformed them about Fast and Furious. The conservative local blog SeeingRed AZ previously covered the scandal here.

The Operation Fast & Furious “gun walking” saga placed hundreds of guns into the hands of Mexican drug cartels. The scandal had a distinct Arizona connection. The firearms were sold and bought in the Phoenix and Tucson metro areas, and ultimately one the guns was used to murder Arizona Border Patrol agent Brian Terry.

Arizona U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke, the former Chief of Staff to former Governor Janet Napolitanoran the Fast and Furious operation. Burke eventually walked away from charges and resigned from his post despite his fingerprints being all over the scandal. Many considered Burke to be the sacrificial lamb for the Obama Administration.

Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa criticized the U.S. Attorney’s office including Cunningham and Burke for their obstruction in the case:

“The U.S. Attorney’s Office advised ATF that agents needed to meet unnecessarily strict evidentiary standards in order to speak with suspects, temporarily detain them, or interdict weapons,” Chairman Issa said. “ATF’s reliance on this advice from the U.S. Attorney’s Office during Fast and Furious resulted in many lost opportunities to interdict weapons.”

Advice and management from people like Dennis Burke and Patrick Cunningham.

Patrick Cunningham worked directly under Burke as the chief of the criminal division. Cunningham was called before Issa’s committee to testify, but ultimately he plead the 5th rather than incriminate himself, Burke, and members of the Obama Administration. Cunningham was allowed to resign his position and eventually he accepted a position working for HighGround Public Affairs in Phoenix. Ironically, HighGround now serves as a campaign consultant to Tom Horne’s re-election bid.

Cunningham provided the inaccurate (or false) information to Senator Grassley and the Justice Department that the ATF (which was overseeing the program with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Arizona) never intentionally allowed the the guns to cross the border or knowingly allowed the sale of weapons to suspicious straw buyers. That was obviously later proven false and the Justice Department later took the unprecedented step of pulling the letter they sent to Congress.

While Tom Horne attacks his Republican opponent, Mark Brnovich, for a $120 donation made to a Democrat back in 2006, Tom Horne is actively soliciting donations from Democrats.

Tom Horne is running on a message of border security and fighting back against Obama this cycle, but how can you truly trust Tom Horne to secure the border and fight the overreach of the federal government when he’s receiving financial support from the very people who were engaged in the Obama Administration’s Fast and Furious cover up?

Editor’s note and correction: This post was in error regarding the political affiliation of Patrick Cunningham. A representative of High Ground clarified Cunningham has been a registered Republican since the early 70’s.

Scott Smith sends mixed message on immigration crisis

Scott SmithTuesday, gubernatorial candidate and former Mesa Mayor Scott Smith announced he would race to the border Wednesday in order to meet with Nogales Mayor Arturo Garino. The reason for their meeting? – to hold a joint press conference to discuss the transportation and “dumping” of immigrant children by the Border Patrol in an old refurbished produce warehouse in Nogales.

In his statement, Mayor Scott Smith called the Obama Administration’s policy of dumping immigrants in Arizona a “failure of leadership” and “the absolute height of stupidity.” The former Mesa mayor also called for Washington to fix our broken border and immigration system.

Smith’s “rush to the border” and his subsequent message following the presser, seem to conflict with his longstanding position on immigration issues and even statements made by Nogales Mayor Garino who was supposedly at the same press conference as Smith.

It was Mayor Scott Smith who opposed Arizona’s effort to enforce federal immigration law through the passage of SB1070 in 2010. This is the same mayor who ran into trouble with Sheriff Joe Arpaio when it was discovered that the City of Mesa was contracting with companies who hired illegal immigrants. Apparently, now that Smith is running for higher office, he’s having to finesse his position to attract hard-line anti-immigration voters. A little pandering only goes so far. Well, maybe not so far in Santa Cruz County.

Smith was also in conflict with Mayor Garino’s statements on Monday when Garino said that all the children being held in the temporary warehouse were in good care and he was comfortable with their living conditions. Keep in mind that Mayor Garino’s record on immigration is quite dismal.  During a private meeting with President Obama, Garino told the president, “I have your back” on comprehensive immigration reform. Garino also argued that the border was secure and criticized illegal crossing prosecution. Yesterday, Garino told the Nogales International that federal officials informed him more children would be processed through the Nogales facility throughout the rest of the summer. He noted after a tour of the facility that, “Border Patrol was doing a great job.”

While the Obama Administration handed the State of Arizona another election year issue, Scott Smith is only nine days late to weigh in on the crisis. Since it was revealed that DHS and the US Border Patrol began the operation over two weeks ago, Arizona officials have already called for federal action. In fact, last Monday, Congressman Paul Gosar at the urging of Governor Brewer and State Treasurer, Doug Ducey, called for a congressional investigation with the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee into the shipping and detention of immigrants in Arizona. Congressman Darrell Issa, chairman of the committee, has pledged to look into the situation as quickly as possible.

Where gubernatorial candidate Scott Smith stands on this issue is anyone’s guess. His opposition to enforcement of immigration law as a mayor tells one story. His support for stronger enforcement as a candidate tells another story. It is an election year after all and finding the right message to appeal to voters is foremost in the mind of most candidates. Let’s hope the voters choose based on proven leadership rather than on finessed messaging.