Sunday, April 22, 2012

Jon Huntsman talks about today's GOP.

Former Presidential candidate and U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman, who has endorsed Mitt Romney for President, was brutally frank in his assessment of the GOP in an interview tonight with Jeff Greenfield.

Huntsman, whose campaign lived and died in the New Hampshire primary, started off by making it clear this would not be an ordinary interview by making it clear that he realized at the start of the campaign that he was in a field of political midgets:

"Recounting his first experience on the presidential debate stage in Iowa last August, Huntsman says he was struck by the question "Is this the best we could do?"

Huntsman went on to describe the way the GOP is run to 'communist China' and to claim (which I believe is right on the mark) that Ronald Reagan would not be able to win the GOP nomination in today's political climate. He stood by his not very enthusiastic endorsement of Mitt Romney but had a message for Mitt that he needs to find something to run on besides fear and articulate a positive message. The most amazing lines in this story are these:

"Huntsman jokingly blamed his failed candidacy in part on his wife, Mary Kaye, who told him she'd leave him if he abandoned his principles.

“She said if you pandered, if you sign any of those damn pledges, I’ll leave you,” Huntsman recounted.

"So I had to say I believe in science — and people on stage look at you quizzically as though you're was an oddball," Huntsman said, explaining why he was "toast" in Iowa."

Imagine that. If you're a Republican and admit you believe in science, then you are 'toast.'

Monday, April 02, 2012

Daniel Patterson End of the Line

According to recommendation in the Patterson report by a team of legal investigators hired by the House Ethics Committee (which Ted at his Rum, Romanism and Rebellion blog posted earlier today) the investigative team is recommending that Rep. Patterson be expelled from the legislature.

The investigation, prompted by a long, documented history of run ins with the police and violence against others on his part (and more specifically his latest physical assault on a woman as I wrote about a little over a month ago when it happened,) details misbehavior at the legislature itself, including verbal and physical threats of violence against other members of that body (of both parties,) offering to trade his vote on legislation for sexual favors and his repeated denials and outright lies, claiming that everyone else is conspiring against him.

The conclusion is very plain:

"Accordingly, based on our investigation, the results of which are more fully described below, we reluctantly recommend that, in light of his extraordinary and very predictable pattern of disorderly, indecorous, and deceptive behavior, coupled with the ineffectiveness of earlier counseling, reprimand, and discipline, Rep. Patterson should be expelled from the House."

Over the past couple of days, with the writing on the wall, Rep. Patterson's behavior has grown increasingly bizarre. First he resigned from the Democratic party (good riddance) and became an independent, railing against excessive partisanship and suggesting that he could bring the sides together. Well, he may be onto something. I suspect that maybe as early as tomorrow morning we will see an amazing show of bipartisanship and unity in the state House of Representatives as all of the other members vote to expel Daniel Patterson. For that matter, as critical as I've been of the GOP members of the legislature, I'm willing to give them another chance-- after all, it would be difficult to cooperate with the other side even if one was inclined to if one of their members was running around making personal threats against people who disagreed with him. So I'm willing to give it a few days and see if expelling Patterson clears some of the air at the legislature.

Then today, Rep. Patterson showed up in the legislature, and conspicuously sat directly behind Rep. Katie Hobbs, who formally brought the ethics complaint to the panel. As Patterson is known to carry a gun and has threatened other members of the legislature before with physical violence it was a tense situation and security was put on alert. Fortunately Katie (who has always been one of my favorite legislators, even before taking the lead on this) was surrounded by friends who made sure she was safe until she left the premises.

Honestly, I believe that Daniel Patterson needs some very serious mental therapy. However, as he is in denial that he even has an issue I only hope that he figures it out before he seriously injures or kills someone else.
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