Threats to freedom of speech, writing and action, though often trivial in isolation, are cumulative in their effect and, unless checked, lead to a general disrespect for the rights of the citizen. -George Orwell

Thursday, February 28, 2013


This guy is utterly shameless:
During a news conference on Capitol Hill held on the eve of implementation of the cuts, known on Capitol Hill as "The Sequester," a reporter asked Reid: "Can you understand the frustration of the American people that you're blaming the Republicans, the Republicans are blaming you and nobody is talking until the day that these cuts kick in?"  Reid replied:
"You know I read an editorial today, and I don't know whether it was the Times or the Post, where the op-ed writer said, 'You know, let’s call it the way it is. The Republicans aren't willing to deal with the Democrats.

"So all this stuff -- Democrats aren't doing anything, Republicans aren’t doing anything --I believe that you guys have an obligation to report it the way it is," he said.

"This isn’t something that happened yesterday, we've been fighting this for a couple years," Reid added. "They're unwilling to do what the American people want done. And it's as simple as that."
There is a kernel of truth in what Reid says.  This really isn't something that happened yesterday.  This latest farce - like other manufactured farces such as the debt ceiling and fiscal cliff - has been the direct result of Reid's deliberate refusal to even allow a budget to be proposed in the Senate, let alone passed.  

It has now been 1,402 days since the Senate passed a budget back in April 2009.  The budget passed was for Fiscal Year 2010 and it was done at a time when the Democrats held all the cards.  Obama in the White House, Reid controlling the Senate and Pelosi controlling the House of Representatives.  Reid had a filibuster-proof majority to do his bidding. He's been using that Democrat-approved spending baseline ever since through a series of continuing resolutions.

Since the historic Tea Party-fueled GOP midterm victories in 2010 that brought the House back under control of Republicans, Reid's no-budget strategy has also been useful in setting up repeated confrontations designed to demonize House Republicans in the eyes of the public.  The Republicans, according to The Narrative that has been promoted by the Dems and their media allies, are the "Party of No" and the lunatics who are "holding the economy hostage" in order to protect the "evil 1%..."

Once the Republicans had control of the House they passed the so-called Ryan budget on April 14, 2011. That was for FY 2012.  On March 29, 2012 House Republicans passed a budget for 2013 called the "Path to Prosperity."  Meanwhile, Reid has refused to let a budget proposal come out of committee in the Senate and also refuses to vote on House budgets.  So who is the obstructionist here?

UPDATE: I had a proglodyte on Twitter try to tell me that the Budget Control Act of 2011 was "budget."  This was in response to my criticism of Harry Reid for his obstructionism in not allowing a budget proposal, let alone a resolution, to come out of the Senate that he controls.  This same clown also tried to claim that - thanks to the GOP - Reid couldn't get 60 votes to move a budget along.  I got no response when I pointed out that nobody filibusters a budget proposal.  Anyway, the issue of whether or not the Budget Control Act qualifies as a "budget" came up last fall in the New Jersey Senate race between the incumbent, Bob Menendez and his challenger, Joe Kyrillos.
In a heated debate Wednesday on New Jersey 101.5-FM, the Democratic incumbent and Kyrillos argued over whether the U.S. Senate has passed a budget in the last three years. The two candidates will face off in the Nov. 6 general election.

"The Senate hasn’t passed a budget in three years," said Kyrillos, who represents part of Monmouth County. "That’s just a fact, hasn’t done it."

But Menendez said that wasn’t true: "Secondly, there is a budget. It’s called the Budget Control Act and you should look it up. You’d understand then that your statement about not having a budget for the last three years would be wrong."
Who was right?  PolitiFact left no doubt about that:
During last week’s debate, Menendez claimed Kyrillos' statement was wrong and that the Senate has passed "a budget" in the last three years, "called the Budget Control Act."

That Act set limits on discretionary spending, but it is missing other features of a "budget resolution," which is considered a budget plan under the official congressional budget process. The Senate hasn’t passed such a plan in more than three years.

We rate the statement FALSE.


Legendary Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward called a senior White House official last week to tell him about an article he had written that was set to appear in last Friday's Post. In the article Woodward was going to call into question - again - Obama's account of how sequestration came about. 
The finger-pointing began during the third presidential debate last fall, on Oct. 22, when President Obama blamed Congress. "The sequester is not something that I've proposed," Obama said. "It is something that Congress has proposed."

The White House chief of staff at the time, Jack Lew, who had been budget director during the negotiations that set up the sequester in 2011, backed up the president two days later.

"There was an insistence on the part of Republicans in Congress for there to be some automatic trigger," Lew said while campaigning in Florida. It "was very much rooted in the Republican congressional insistence that there be an automatic measure."

The president and Lew had this wrong. My extensive reporting for my book "The Price of Politics" shows that the automatic spending cuts were initiated by the White House and were the brainchild of Lew and White House congressional relations chief Rob Nabors — probably the foremost experts on budget issues in the senior ranks of the federal government.

Obama personally approved of the plan for Lew and Nabors to propose the sequester to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.). They did so at 2:30 p.m. July 27, 2011, according to interviews with two senior White House aides who were directly involved.

... A majority of Republicans did vote for the Budget Control Act that summer, which included the sequester. Key Republican staffers said they didn’t even initially know what a sequester was — because the concept stemmed from the budget wars of the 1980s, when they were not in government.

At the Feb. 13 Senate Finance Committee hearing on Lew's nomination to become Treasury secretary, Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC) asked Lew about the account in my book:
"Woodward credits you with originating the plan for sequestration. Was he right or wrong?" 

"It’s a little more complicated than that," Lew responded, "and even in his account, it was a little more complicated than that. We were in a negotiation where the failure would have meant the default of the government of the United States."

"Did you make the suggestion?" Burr asked.

"Well, what I did was said that with all other options closed, we needed to look for an option where we could agree on how to resolve our differences. And we went back to the 1984 plan that Senator [Phil] Gramm and Senator [Warren] Rudman worked on and said that that would be a basis for having a consequence that would be so unacceptable to everyone that we would be able to get action."

In other words, yes.
As Woodward later told Politico, the aide "yelled at me for about a half hour."


In addition to the revelation that a White House staffer threatened Woodward, the Politico article offers this mild but nevertheless significant criticism of Obama:
The Woodward reporting has caused the White House spin machine to sputter at a crucial time. The president was running around the country, campaign-style, warning that Republicans were at fault for the massive cuts set to hit Friday. What Obama never says: it was his own staff that proposed sequestration, and the tax hikes he now proposes – aimed at replacing half of the cuts — were never part of that very specific plan. [Obama moved the goalposts.]

The White House instead has, with great success, fudged the facts. The administration has convinced a majority of the country that Republicans are more to blame by emphasizing that Republicans voted for the plan. Which they did — after Obama conceived it.
In addition to his appearance on Wednesday's edition of Morning Joe, Woodward was also a guest of CNN's Wolf Blitzer:
WOLF BLITZER, CNN: You're used to this kind of stuff, but share with our viewers what's going on between you and the White House.

BOB WOODWARD: Well, they're not happy at all and some people kind of, you know, said, look, 'we don't see eye to eye on this.' They never really said, though, afterwards, they've said that this is factually wrong, and they -- and it was said to me in an e-mail by a top --

BLITZER: What was said?

WOODWARD: It was said very clearly, you will regret doing this.

BLITZER: Who sent that e-mail to you?

WOODWARD: Well, I'm not going to say.

BLITZER: Was it a senior person at the White House?

WOODWARD: A very senior person. And just as a matter -- I mean, it makes me very uncomfortable to have the White House telling reporters, 'you're going to regret doing something that you believe in, and even though we don't look at it that way, you do look at it that way.' I think if Barack Obama knew that was part of the communication's strategy, let's hope it's not a strategy, that it's a tactic that somebody's employed, and said, 'Look, we don't go around trying to say to reporters, if you, in an honest way, present something we don't like, that, you know, you're going to regret this.' It's Mickey Mouse.
Woodward has been a hero to liberals for nearly 40 years since he and fellow WaPo legend Carl Bernstein helped take down the Nixon administration during the Watergate scandalBut even Woodward's icon status is not enough to protect him from the savagery of the Obama Media Group, which has dutifully leaped to Obama's defense and targeted Woodward for treatment normally reserved for Republicans.

The reason for the mockery by the JournoList crowd is that Woodward is ruining the Obama strategy of demonizing the Republicans.  Obama wants all of the blame for sequestration to fall on the House GOP.  Having been taken by surprise that John Boehner and the House GOP have finally chosen to stand and fight rather than cave yet again to Obama, the media have been forced to run interference for Dear Leader in an unexpected way.  

While Obama has been pointing fingers at Republicans, they have been pointing out again and again that sequestration was originally proposed by Team Obama.  Woodward's book and subsequent articles and TV appearances provide the proof that the Republicans are correct.  And Woodward's liberal street cred is so unassailable that when he says the sequester was Obama's idea, people take it very seriously.

On Tuesday of last week, Michael Tomasky of the Daily Beast admitted that sequester was Obama's plan but still managed to blame Republicans for it.
So fine, the White House proposed it. It did so only after months of Republicans publicly demanding huge spending cuts and refusing to consider any revenues and acting as if they were prepared to send the nation into default over spending. In other words, this was the administration's idea in much the way that it's a parent's "idea" to pay ransom to a person who has taken his child hostage. There was a gun to the White House's head, which was the possibility of the country going into default.
On Thursday, Chuck Todd of NBC echoed that sentiment:
CHUCK TODD: So, Republicans, they spent the day yesterday passing around this video of a Montana Democratic senator, Max Baucus, by the way who's up for reelection in 2014, who was saying this about the sequester.

SEN MAX BAUCUS (D-Montana): The President is a part of this, the sequester. The White House recommended it, frankly, back in August of 2011. And, so, now we're feeling the effects of it.

CHUCK TODD: Of all the dumb things Washington does, this "who started it" argument has proven to be one of the dumber ones, especially since we're so close to the actual cuts going into place.
It's easy to see how the sleight-of-hand works.  In his last statement Todd complains about how dumb it is for the politicians to argue over "who started it."  He says it as if he thinks maybe both sides are to blame. In reality, the context makes it clear that he thinks it's really only the Republicans who are dumb.  But undoubtedly if asked, Todd would claim that he wasn't taking sides.

The very next day, Todd provided this little soundbite:
Alright, the President has been using his outside game to sell his position on sequester, talking to local TV affiliates, and there's radio shows, surrounding himself with first responders. Meanwhile Republicans have been playing, well, an inside game, the inside the Beltway game, trying to build support for their position against the cuts and begging the media to say it's Obama that started the sequester, not them.
Woodward's article was published on Friday.  He appeared on TV over the weekend.  And this week suddenly he's a target.  Obama campaign adviser David Plouffe has insinuated that Woodward is a has-been.

Breitbart has a round-up of the various comments made by Obama's apologists about Woodward:
It began with Politico itself, which downplayed the entire incident, even as it acknowledged that Woodward's "play-by-play is basically spot on" with regard to reporting the sequestration. "White House officials are certainly within their rights to yell at any journalist, including Bob Woodward," said official Obama buddies Mike Allen and Jim VandeHei. Allen and VandeHei merely suggested that the battle with Woodward was "a major distraction at a pivotal moment for the president." They added, "Watching and now having interviewed Woodward, it is easy to see why White House officials get worked about him." Poor Obama, having to deal with such issues.

Next, the White House went to its favorite outlet, Buzzfeed, and their favorite BenSmithing reporter, Ben Smith, to leak the source of the Woodward "regret" email. It’s clear why they did it – Smith spun the entire incident for the White House. After announcing that the email came from Gene Sperling, director of the White House Economic Council, he proceeded to pretend that the threat email wasn't a threat email at all – actually, Woodward was making a rookie mistake by misinterpreting a kindly tip as a threat: "Officials often threaten reporters that they will 'regret' printing something that is untrue, but Woodward took the remark as a threat." Nothing to see here. Move along. Just to clarify, Smith later added via Twitter, "Am I crazy to read 'regret' here as 'regret being wrong'? This is something flacks yell at reporters a lot."

That meme was picked up by the White House's favorite palace guards, including Dave Weigel at Slate (he retweeted Smith, tweeted, "Theory: Woodward is trolling," then added via retweet that the whole situation was "boring"); BuzzFeed’s Andrew Kaczynski, who mockingly tweeted, "Every reporter who deals with flacks/campaign advisors/politicos/ on a daily basis finds that less than threatening"; Justin Green, who edits David Frum's blog at The Daily Beast, tweeted, "I rarely rarely report, and I've had flacks say worse. Not that rare"; Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic tweeted, "As a reporter, I don't think this was a threat"; Dylan Byers of Politico tweeted, "tweets, I'm no Woodward but broadcast/cable TV PR reps use that 'regret' tactic a lot"; Josh Marshall of Talking Points Memo tweeted, "Who goes birther first, Scalia or Woodward?" The messaging was universal from the leftist Obama-supporting media: Woodward hadn't been threatened, and was an amateur or a crazy old coot to think he was being threatened. Matt Yglesias of Slate summed up the general Palace Guard Media take: "Woodward's managed to make me suspect Nixon got a raw deal."
If I had to guess, I would say that Sperling's hostility and the threats he made are proof that he was one of Woodward's original sources (keeping in mind that Woodward has steadfastly tried to protect the names of his sources for the book).  It would make sense that Sperling is feeling quite a bit of pressure from inside the White House if he was a source.  That kind of thing would make a man start issuing threats to the person he blames for his predicament.

Notice the common theme in the above tweets.  Rather than focusing on the spectacle of a White House staffer issuing threats of any kind to a legendary investigative journalist who had been given access to the White House precisely because of his impeccable reputation, the JournoList brat pack claims that Woodward is crying wolf and that the "threat" was really just a figure of speech and not really "threatening" at all.  That, of course, completely (and deliberately) misses the point.

It's bad enough that Team Obama has long waged a cold war against Fox News.  But when a liberal icon like Bob Woodward finds himself on the enemies list simply for accurately reporting the facts, the increasing paranoia of Obama and his minions becomes impossible to dismiss.  And Woodward isn't the only one.  Lanny Davis, another solid liberal and Clintonista, has now come forward to say that the White House threatened the Washington Times because of columns written by Davis.

Keep in mind that these same propaganda units of the Obama Media Group went so far as to promote the notion that Bill and Hillary Clinton were "racists" prior to the 2008 South Carolina Democrat primary.  So naturally even well-known liberals in the media are not immune from attacks if they dare speak truth to power with regards to the Dear Leader in the White House.

As Juan Williams, yet another liberal, stated recently:
"I always thought it was the Archie Bunkers of the world, the right-wingers of world, who were more resistant and more closed-minded about hearing the other side ... In fact, what I have learned is, in a very painful way — and I can open this shirt and show you the scars and the knife wounds — is that it is big media institutions who are identifiably more liberal to left-leaning who will shut you down, stab you and kill you, fire you, if they perceive that you are not telling the story in the way that they want it told." 

Meanwhile, the mockery of Woodward in the Obama Media Group continues today.  As you can see in the clip below, Obama's Kool-aid intoxicated defenders are deliberately missing the point. It's not about Woodward being "scared" of the "little White House aide."  Is anybody really saying that Woodward is in actual physical danger?  No, of course not.  This is about a White House that is panicking and issuing threats, verbally as well as in writing.  Who cares whether the threats are credible?  The fact is, threats are being made by this administration because it's credibility is being shredded and The Narrative is being disrupted!


Monday, February 25, 2013


Across the Atlantic, Americans see European economies faltering under enormous debt, overburdened welfare states, governments controlling close to 50% of the economy, high taxation, heavily regulated labor markets, aging populations, and large numbers of public sector workers. They also see a European political class that is unable -- and, in many cases, unwilling -- to implement economic reform.

This timely and sobering video explains why Americans cannot ignore the "canary in the coal mine" across the pond in determining our future. We must ask the question: "Is America becoming Europe?"

To learn more read Dr. Samuel Gregg's Becoming Europe: Economic Decline, Culture, and How America Can Avoid a European Future

"This is a book that every economist, historian, and politician should read." --Amity Shlaes, syndicated Bloomberg News columnist

"Europe is a terrifying example of what happens when the state gets too large and the money runs out. Don't imagine that it couldn't happen to you." --Daniel Hannan, British Conservative Member of the European Parliament

Sunday, February 24, 2013


As always, V-POTUS Bill Whittle does an excellent job of explaining the Conservative - no, the common sense - view of an issue.  In this case, the topic involves gun rights.  

One of the cutesy "arguments" that proglodyte gun-grabbing wingnuts of the Left like to employ these days to counter the reality of our Second Amendment rights is to say: "But don't children have a right to not be murdered in their school?" Or in the case of this MSNBC discussion, "Shouldn't we also have freedom from people who have guns?"

Whittle reminds us that this argument works both ways:
In October of 2007, Amanda Collins was walking to her car after a night class at the University of Nevada at Reno. Amanda had a concealed carry permit for her 9mm Glock that she carried for self-defense. Unfortunately for Amanda, UNR is, like most college campuses, a gun-free zone. So, like the law-abiding citizen that she is, she did not have her gun with her in this gun-free zone when she was attacked by James Biela. Biela raped her on the UNR campus, less than 300 yards from the Campus Police Office. He then walked away, and a few months later, this human predator went on to murder 19-year-old Brianna Dennison.  Amanda Collins went on to say, quote, "I know, having been the first victim, that Brianna Dennison would still be alive, had I been able to defend myself that night." Unquote.

Therefore, I am directing the Virtual Attorney General to aggressively challenge any gun control laws that violate Amanda Collins's right not to be raped, and Brianna Dennison's right not to be murdered.  You are not forced to abandon your First Amendment right when you enter Chicago and New York , or your Fifth Amendment right when you walk onto a college campus.  As Virtual President I will veto on the spot, without hesitation but with a great deal of pleasure, any and all attempts to destroy any of the Bill of Rights of the Constitution of the United States of America.

Because their arguments are so simplistic and child-like, it's not hard to anticipate a proglodyte's response to the premise that if Amanda Collins had been able to carry her gun on campus that she could have defended herself and prevented the rape.  They'll say: The rapist caught her by surprise and had his gun to her head before she could reach for hers.  Therefore, what's the point of carrying the gun?  It didn't help her defend herself, did it?  That's true enough.  But that very same argument can be applied to the squishy, ineffective alternatives offered by the Left.  Having been caught by surprise, how would a call box or a whistle have done Amanda any good?  

This is Brianna Dennison.  Didn't she have a right to NOT be raped and murdered?

Saturday, February 23, 2013


"ObamaCare is actually a wealth-redistribution system in the most regressive manner possible.  Young workers, who find it increasingly more difficult to find jobs, will end up subsidizing the health care of older workers, who are hanging onto jobs longer and longer.  The politics of this wealth transfer is nothing short of perverse..."

ObamaCare sticks it to the young and healthy.  Don't blame me. I voted for Romney.

Thursday, February 21, 2013


The GOP is currently undergoing the process of regrouping in the aftermath of last year's disappointing elections.  Part of that process involves a new generation of leaders stepping up and taking charge, both for the sake of the party, the sake of the Conservative movement and, of course, their own presidential ambitions.  The group runs the gamut from Texas Tea Partier Ted Cruz to New Jersey RINO Chris Christie; from Libertarian/Conservative hybrid Rand Paul to Florida golden boy Marco Rubio.  And there are many others as well.

On Tuesday Michael Barone had an article in the Washington Examiner titled "Republicans struggle to agree on candidates who can win."  He points out that while the GOP has lost the presidential election four out of the last six cycles the Republicans have had quite a bit of success on the state level.  For instance, the GOP has won control of the House of Representatives eight of the last ten cycles.  Success on the downticket has more to do with the quality of the candidate than anything else.
The fact is that some candidates who rise up from nowhere turn out to have good political instincts, like Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson, while others make game-losing mistakes.

The Republican Party has benefited on balance from the infusion of new people symbolized by the Tea Party movement, just as the Democratic Party benefited on balance 40 years ago from the infusion of people from the peace movement.

But such outsider movements also produce some candidates with a gift for campaign-losing gaffes. And they produce primary electorates who prefer a disastrous purist over someone not far off in views but also capable of winning an election.

Assessing whether a candidate has good political instincts is a matter of judgment about which reasonable people will disagree.
There will come a time to cull the herd and make decisions as to which of the contenders is going to carry the banner of the GOP into battle with the Democrats in the 2016 presidential race.  And before that, the crucial 2014 midterm elections will determine whether or not the GOP can continue to hold the line against the Obama agenda.  Elections have consequences.  And when decision time comes you can be certain that the Buckley Rule will be invoked.

Everybody seems to agree that the Buckley Rule has been around for a long time.  Beyond that, however, there seems to be a great deal of confusion about its origins and true meaning.  Here is an example from 2010:
Conservative author and commentator William F. Buckley (1925-2008) was asked, in 1967, whom he would support in 1968 for U.S. president. Buckley responded with what would later be called the "Buckley Rule" for primary voting: "The wisest choice would be the one who would win. No sense running Mona Lisa in a beauty contest. I'd be for the most right, viable candidate who could win. If you could convince me that Barry Goldwater could win, I'd vote for him."

The term "Buckley Rule" wouldn't be popularly used until the 2000s, but the language "rightward-most viable candidate" (not the exact words) has been often repeated. The word "viable"—a candidate who is the most likely to win the general election—adds an element of pragmatism to the conservative philosophy.

Conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh disagreed with the "Buckley Rule" and established a new "Limbaugh Rule" on September 14, 2010. Limbaugh said that it requires clairvoyance to determine who will win the general election, so one should just simply vote for the most conservative candidate.
While debating the true meaning of the rule may seem rather academic and abstract it is, in fact, a very important concept to understand.  It goes straight to the heart of the matter as to whether it's better to nominate a stalwart or a centrist; a grassroots favorite or an establishment darling.  It's important to remember the context in which Limbaugh instituted his rule:
We still have people who think that professional Washington politicians are the way to fix this, and clearly it isn't. Some of these people are citing the Buckley Rule. Now, I can honestly say that I know what the Buckley Rule is. I can honestly say I knew William F. Buckley and Buckley was a friend of mine. The Buckley Rule is, ostensibly, that you vote for the most electable conservative option against a Democrat in November. You vote for the Republican, slash, conservative who can win. To me, this requires clairvoyance, as is being currently applied in the Mike Castle-Christine O'Donnell race in Delaware, to use an example. The polling data is that Castle will win big and O'Donnell will lose big. If she gets the Republican nomination today, if she wins the election she'll lose big. The polls say she'll lose by 25 points; that Castle will win by 20 points. But who knows this? The election's a long time off. In a year like this, it seems to me that Americanism versus socialism can make up 25 points. Why the hell not try to? Is what I don't understand. Why not try to make up the 25 points?

Okay, let's just assume that it's correct. Let's assume that Christine O'Donnell is down in the polls, Democrat polls, by the way, by 25 points. Okay, fine. If she's the best option we have to stop what's going on once she gets to Washington, why not try to make up the 25 points? We got socialism, communism, liberalism on the ropes. It's too risky? Let me tell you something. It's worth the risk. We're talking about saving the [blank] damn country. What do you mean, too risky?
Limbaugh complained that Castle had, among other things, voted to investigate George W. Bush for lying about Iraq.  Rush wanted to support feisty grassroots favorite, O'Donnell, whom he felt could win in a year when the Republicans seemed assured of a strong showing (he wasn't wrong about the strong showing).  So he came up with his rule:
So we have professional Washingtonians now telling us that Mike Castle's the only option we've got. Well, it's time, ladies and gentlemen, for the Limbaugh Rule to supplant and replace the Buckley Rule, because the Buckley Rule requires clairvoyance. The Buckley Rule requires people who can't possibly know the outcome of anything in the middle of September to support or not support somebody based on what they think's going to happen in early November. Christine O'Donnell can't win, she's 25 points down. Can't win? If a constitutional conservative can't win in this climate coming down from 25 points, we need to find that out, find out where we are. Why not go for it? The stakes dictate it, do they not? Here's the Limbaugh Rule: In an election year when voters are fed up with liberalism and socialism, when voters are clearly frightened of where the hell the country is headed, vote for the most conservative Republican in the primary, period.
Of course with the support of the Tea Party, Limbaugh, Palin, DeMint and other staunch Conservatives, O'Donnell did defeat Castle in the remarkably bitter primary.  

Following her upset win, O'Donnell continued to face a split reaction from the leaders in the local, state, and national Republican Party. Castle said he would not support O'Donnell. The National Republican Senatorial Committee released a statement almost immediately following O'Donnell's win, stating that they would not spend money to support her or her campaign. John Cornyn, chairman of the NRSC, released his own statement claiming he had not authorized the issuing of the first statementHe then offered the maximum $42,000 donation to her campaign; Cornyn acknowledged, however, that he was not sure if she could win. 

Mitt Romney also contributed to O'Donnell's general election funds. However, former White House adviser and Republican strategist Karl Rove said following O'Donnell's victory, "This is not a race we're going to be able to win." His remark triggered a fusillade of criticism from conservative talk radio.  

The morning after the primary, Public Policy Polling released a tweet indicating that their polling found that primary voters who voted for Mike Castle supported Chris Coons, the Democrat opponent, over O'Donnell 44% to 28% in a general election"Bottom line is, if she’s nominated, Republicans lose the election automatically," Castle said in an interview with NBC's Kelly O'Donnell. "It’s that simple."

Charles Krauthammer was disappointed by the primary result.  He wrote:
Tuesday in Delaware was a bad day not only for Republicans but also for conservatives. Tea Partyer [sic] Christine O'Donnell scored a stunning victory over establishment Republican Mike Castle. Stunning but pyrrhic. The very people who have most alerted the country to the perils of President Obama's social democratic agenda may have just made it impossible for Republicans to retake the Senate and definitively stop that agenda.  Bill Buckley -- no Mike Castle he -- had a rule: Support the most conservative candidate who is electable. 
After O'Donnell lost the general election to Coons by nearly 17 points, there were numerous discussions within Republican circles regarding whether the party had blown a sure thing by nominating her instead of Castle. The pragmatists said that this had happened, and pointed to other races in Nevada and Colorado where Tea Party-favored candidates had lost races against Democrat rivals.  

The purists rejected that assumption and said that running candidates who supported fundamentally conservative values was always worthwhile - essentially, the Limbaugh Rule. For her part, O'Donnell felt betrayed by the GOP establishment and said the consequent lack of support had led to her defeat.

Two years later the GOP blew another opportunity to take back the Senate in 2012.  Clumsy and foolish statements about rape cost the GOP wins in Indiana and Missouri and even managed to undermine the Romney campaign.  The debacle in Indiana was preceded by a GOP primary result that was strikingly similar to the 2010 Delaware race.  The defeated establishment incumbent, Dick Lugar, was unapologetically bitter about losing to upstart Richard Mourdock and was unhelpful in the general election.  As of last week Lugar is STILL bitter!  The Republicans also lost seemingly winnable races in North Dakota, Montana, Wisconsin and Virginia.

The Democrats are still in control of the Senate. 

So what would Bill Buckley have done?

Last week Neal Freeman, a former National Review staffer and editor who was there when the Buckley Rule was created, wrote an article titled "Buckley Rule - According to Bill, not Karl" intended to clarify its origins and meaningWhat exactly did supporting "the rightwardmost viable candidate" mean to Buckley?  And what was the point of it at the time?

According to Freeman, the rule was originally formulated to settle the debate at National Review as to who would win the magazine's endorsement for the 1964 GOP presidential nomination. The contenders were Nelson Rockefeller (supported by the formidable editor James Burnham along with Priscilla Buckley and Arlene Croce) and Barry Goldwater (supported by editors Bill Rusher, Bill Rickenbacker and Freeman himself).  Burnham laid out the case for Rockefeller:
First, Rockefeller was running well ahead of Goldwater in the trial-heat polls against incumbent Lyndon Johnson. Second, Rockefeller was an Ivy Leaguer, a well-connected establishmentarian, a sophisticated candidate who could expect more positive treatment from the eastern press. Third, Rockefeller had the financial resources. (Even Rusher conceded this point.) Fourth, the influence of Rockefeller’s family was marbled through institutional New York — Wall Street, medicine, the real-estate moguldom, big philanthropy, a rainbow array of well-endowed ethnic and racial groups, the cultural centers. (Every New York museum worth visiting seemed to be chaired by one Rockefeller or another.) Burnham’s political point? As governor of a northeastern state, Rockefeller could put at least parts of the region in play, a rare and highly valuable asset for any GOP hopeful.

Burnham’s most powerful argument, his closer, was that on the overriding issue of the day Rockefeller would stand with us against our mortal foes: the capitulationists in the twilight struggle with international Communism. In Burnham’s telling, Rockefeller had shown himself to be a reliable anti-Communist in his tenure at the State Department. His family’s businesses around the world had cooperated with what were euphemistically known as “agencies of the U.S. government.” And most significantly for Burnham, Rockefeller had retained as his principal foreign-policy adviser a young academic with impeccable anti-Communist credentials named Henry Kissinger. Burnham concluded by suggesting that, because of the depth of his experience and the range of his contacts, Rockefeller might be even more effective in prosecuting the Cold War than the boisterously anti-Communist Goldwater.
It was a very powerful argument.  But it must be remembered that William F. Buckley, Jr. and the magazine he founded were part of the Conservative movement within the Republican Party.  The goal was not simply to win this election or that election but to advance certain principles.  One cannot understand the Buckley Rule without understanding this point.  The case for Goldwater was this:
First, the polls were to be dismissed. As well as he ran against Goldwater, Rockefeller was still trailing Johnson by open-water margins. There was little chance that the American people were going to want a third president in less than a year: Johnson was the beneficiary of a halo effect as the country came together in the aftermath of JFK’s assassination a few months earlier. Second, Goldwater would make our brand-new conservative case — a case that most Americans had never heard — with verve and impact. Third, a Rockefeller nomination would mute both the social issues and the limited-government issues and, as a consequence, might stunt or splinter our fragile fusionist coalition. (Rockefeller was a social liberal and, quintessentially, a big-government Republican.) Finally and most important, we argued that Goldwater would advance our cause strategically. He would rip the Republican party from its roots in the eastern establishment and push it into the future — toward the West and toward the South.
The implications are clear.  There was virtually no difference between East Coast millionaire Republican Nelson Rockefeller and East Coast millionaire Democrat Jack Kennedy. (Ironically, Buckley himself was an East Coast millionaire and, like Kennedy, a Catholic - but with a political philosophy at odds with the liberal consensus espoused by both Kennedy and Rockefeller.)  And now that Kennedy was a martyred hero there was essentially no chance of his successor, LBJ, being defeated less than a year after the assassination.  This meant that with no chance of winning, Rockefeller's "electability" argument was effectively nullified.

If victory in November was no longer a possibility, was there anything to be salvaged from the campaign?  From the perspective of the Conservatives at National Review the answer was a defiant YES!  And that's when Buckley issued his ruling:
These intramural arguments, as I say, were protracted, begun in the winter and carrying on into the early spring. WFB sat at the head of the table, encouraging others to speak, keeping his own counsel. In early June, after Rockefeller had won the Oregon primary and Goldwater had won California, after all of us had had our say, after rumors had begun to creep out of 35th Street that NR might shift its support to Nelson Rockefeller — the equivalent, today, of word leaking out of 15th Street that the Washington Post might endorse Michele Bachmann — Bill, who rarely proposed, decided that it was time to dispose. With each of us in our assigned seat and with six pairs of eyeballs staring at him unblinkingly, Bill announced that "National Review will support the rightwardmost viable candidate."

Victory for Team Goldwater! We all knew what "viable" meant in Bill's lexicon. It meant somebody who saw the world as we did. Somebody who would bring credit to our cause. Somebody who, win or lose, would conservatize the Republican party and the country. It meant somebody like Barry Goldwater. (And so it came to pass. For the next 40 years, the GOP nominated and elected men from the West and the South. Nixon won twice, Reagan twice, the Bushes thrice. Only in recent cycles has the GOP reverted to its habit of nominating "moderates" favored by the establishment. Dole, McCain, Romney — all of them were admired by the fashionable media until they won the GOP nomination, at which point they were abandoned in favor of the liberal nominated by the Democrats.)
Bill Buckley was careful with words. If he had opted on that June day for the words "rightwardmost electable candidate," we would all have recognized it as a victory for Team Rockefeller. And life might look very different today. If there had been no Goldwater, National Review might not have become so influential, and if there had been no Goldwater, no National Review, there might have been no Reagan.
One thing that Freeman did not mention in his article was a fact with which everybody at National Review would have been familiar at the time.  Four years earlier, during the 1960 GOP primaries, when Vice President Richard Nixon, a staunch anti-Communist from the West, was trying to succeed his boss, President Eisenhower, Rockefeller had stood in the way.  Although Rockefeller had officially dropped out of contention in December of 1959, it was well known that he was still manipulating things behind the scenes.  There was still a chance he could mount a challenge to Nixon at the convention, which was held in Chicago.
Two nights before the convention was to open, the party's platform was a mess. Nixon panicked. He had his men call Rockefeller and held an all-night meeting with party leaders to come up with a coherent policy. What came to be called "The Pact of Fifth Avenue" contained 14 points--seven concerning foreign policy and seven domestic--mostly Rockefeller's agenda and a promise not to challenge Nixon or raise a fight on the convention floor. Rockefeller announced the plan to the press on the eve of the convention.
Convention leaders were appalled and saw this as a weakness on Nixon's part. The convention was on the verge of being out of control, which prompted Nixon to fly to Chicago to meet with delegations and smooth things over.
Buckley wanted the Pact of Fifth Avenue to be the last hurrah of the Eastern establishment wing of the Republican Party.  It's fair to say that in this he and National Review were successful. 

Avik Roy responded to Freeman's article, claiming that by nominating Goldwater the Republicans had handed a victory to LBJ and the Dems, which resulted almost immediately in the passage of the Great Society:
This “Goldwater’s defeat begat Ronald Reagan and the conservative movement” thesis is common among a certain vintage of conservative thinkers, all of whom are wiser than I. But it’s worth pointing out that the landslide defeat of Goldwater to Lyndon Johnson led to the enactment of the Great Society, and most notably, Medicare and Medicaid. In other words, the very fiscal crisis we face today — for which, at our most courageous, we recommend but modest reforms — was a direct result of the disastrous Goldwater campaign.
We may all prefer the policies of Goldwater to those of Rockefeller. But it’s at least debatable whether or not the conservative movement was better off, or worse off, for having nominated Barry Goldwater in 1964. Indeed, the 1964 election may be the most salient example of what happens when we don’t pick the most conservative candidate who can win.
When quickly reminded that LBJ was more or less unbeatable in 1964, given the circumstances, and thus Rockefeller's defeat in the primaries was not the deciding factor of the general election, Roy came back with this argument:
However, it is certainly true that anti-Goldwater sentiment led Democrats to achieve far larger majorities in Congress than they would have otherwise; the resultant electoral rebuke led many Republicans—who had been resisting Medicare up to that point—to go along with the plan. 
As DrewM at Ace of Spades HQ pointed out, the Social Security Act amendments of 1965 that created Medicare and Medicaid passed with significant support of Republicans in Congress:     
The House adopted a conference report -- a unified House-Senate version of the bill -- on July 27, 1965, and passed it by a 307-116 margin. That included 70 Republican "yes" votes, against 68 "no" votes.

Then, on July 28, 1965, the Senate adopted the bill by a vote of 70-24, with 13 Republicans in favor and 17 against.
It's a bit silly to think that 70 Republicans in the House and 13 in the Senate were "shamed" into supporting the legislation because of Goldwater.  The margin of the victory might have been slightly less if Rockefeller had been the GOP candidate in 1964 but clearly it was always going to be a triumphant year for the Democrats.  

Furthermore, if Rockefeller had been the nominee and had found a way to defeat Johnson, there's no evidence to suggest that he would have opposed the legislation.  There is, on the other hand, plenty of evidence to suggest that he wouldn'tRockefeller was promoting a version of Medicare as early as 1962.  His record as governor of New York indicates that he did not oppose the proliferation of government bureaucracy.  Nor was he interested in cutting spending, as his approach to Medicaid demonstrated.

Rockefeller enjoyed a great deal of personal popularity in the media.  He was the "cool" candidate.  He was viewed as being much cooler than Goldwater (despite Goldwater's cool glasses, which would now be classified as "hipster").  But this was mostly due to the fact that Rockefeller was essentially a liberal who merely called himself a "Republican" because that was his family's traditional party affiliation.  Men like Rockefeller and his fellow New Yorker, Senator Jacob Javits, were "Republicans" who were far to the left of many prominent Democrats.

William F. Buckley was as familiar with the Rockefeller-type "Republican" as anybody.  Buckley understood that while Rockefeller's habit of attacking other members of the GOP made him popular with the media establishment (in much the same way that Chris Christie has recently boosted his popularity), in the end Lyndon Johnson was unbeatable.   

Thus the dilemma that led to the Buckley Rule was NOT whether Republicans should win with Rockefeller or lose with Goldwater but rather should Republicans lose with Rockefeller and leave the status quo of the liberal consensus alone or lose with Goldwater but only after having used the opportunity of a general election to powerfully present the case for Conservatism.

So yes, the Goldwater campaign did begat the Reagan Revolution.  Yes, the Goldwater campaign laid the groundwork for GOP victories in five of the next six presidential election cycles.  Yes, Buckley and the National Review made the right choice.

Now do I think that Bill Buckley would have endorsed Christine O'Donnell over Mike Castle in the 2010 Delaware primary?  The answer is no, he wouldn't.  He would have recognized that there's a difference between a watershed moment like the 1964 presidential election and a midterm Senate primary.  

Presidential elections are unique in a variety of ways.  They require special consideration.  Congressional elections, on the other hand, are about capturing majorities in the House and Senate.  The best thing for Conservatism, ultimately, is to prevent the other party from having the ability to ram through harmful legislation as happened during the 111th Congress.  Would a moderate Republican from a blue state have a perfect voting record from the perspective of a diehard Conservative?  Probably not.  But it will always be better than that of the Dem-witted alternative.

For me the issue comes down to ability, not electability.  Electability should be the reward for those who have the ability.  We need candidates who have the ability to bring the Conservative message not just sincerely but effectively.  We need Conservative candidates who are able to skillfully defend themselves and the message from the relentless hostility and bias of the Establishment Media.  We need Conservative candidates who can relate to and communicate with all the demographics of the electorate.  We need for all the party leaders - local, statewide and national - to always remember that yes, politics is about winning.  Obama and his degenerate handlers understand that all too well.  

It's still a relatively free country and so people are able to debate political ideology whenever they feel like it.  But for those who want to step up and play the political game they had better be prepared to play to win. And they had better have the skills to win.  Ideological sincerity is admirable, of course.  But all else being equal, I'll take the candidate who has the sincerity and the political skills to defeat the enemy.

The Buckley Rule was established during a time of political revolution.  It was the right thing to do.  But I feel confident in assuming that Buckley understood that there's a time for revolution and a time for governing.  And you can't govern if you can't get elected. Clumsy, inept candidates are no longer welcome in our party.  We simply can't afford them anymore.

Call it Moira's Rule.