Tuesday, April 10, 2012

To: Friends & Supporters

From: Gary L. Bauer

COUNTDOWN TO VICTORY: 210 DAYS TO THE 2012 ELECTIONS

Santorum Suspends

Senator Rick Santorum suspended his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination just a few hours ago in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The decision came after another weekend at the bedside of his daughter Bella, who faced another medical crisis. Watching this wonderful family and its commitment to the sanctity of life has been an incredible blessing.

As you know, I endorsed Senator Santorum and helped rally conservative leaders to his banner. I am saddened that he has not prevailed. But I am as sure today as I was when I endorsed him that his unambiguous message of smaller government, lower taxes, a strong national defense, pro-family and pro-life values is a the winning message for the conservative movement and the right message for America's future.

Those who believe we should drop values issues in this campaign are dead wrong. If the GOP and its nominee fall into the trap of believing that these issues are an impediment to victory, they will ensure that the Obama nightmare lasts for another four years.

I urge Governor Romney to accept Senator Santorum's advice and counsel in the weeks ahead and to be magnanimous in reaching out to the senator, as well as to other conservative favorites who have competed in this contest. A united Republican Party can prevail.

To Senator Santorum and his family I say, God bless you! Thank you for defending our values in the political arena against long odds. We are proud of you. And we look forward to continuing to fight the good fight with you!

Obama's War On Women

By now you've probably heard about the recent meeting in Washington between senior Obama Administration officials and the Muslim Brotherhood -- the radical Islamic group that will soon control Egypt. Given what Obama said to Russian President Dmitri Medvedev recently about cutting deals after he is reelected, it would be interesting to know what was said to the Muslim Brotherhood.

I couldn't help thinking about the irony of this meeting given all the Democrats' rhetoric about a Republican "war on women." Aside from the absurdity of attacking a majority of the population, the only war on women I see in America is the one waged by the left against conservative women like Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann.

But there is a very real war on women being waged throughout the Islamic world, and it is led by groups like the Muslim Brotherhood. The Muslim Brotherhood is committed to Sharia law, fundamentalist Islamic law that treats women like cattle.

For example, women seeking a divorce in Sharia councils must bring two male witnesses to testify on their behalf. There is no such requirement for men. And this happens in Sharia councils in England! Just imagine what it must be like for women in Egypt and the rest of the so-called "Muslim world."

Eric Trager of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy writes in The New Republic about a forum he attended last week with members of the Muslim Brotherhood delegation. Consider this excerpt about what he heard there:

"It remains unclear ... how the Muslim Brotherhood's longtime opposition to legislation banning female genital mutilation, which a Brotherhood parliamentarian recently reiterated, plays into the Brotherhood's supposed concerns for women's social role. And when CNN's Brianna Keilar pressed al-Dardery on the Brotherhood's clitorectomy stance, the parliamentarian suddenly got defensive. 'The Egyptian people will decide for themselves what is good for them,' I overheard him telling Keilar. 'It is not acceptable for anyone to tell the Egyptian people how to think this way or the other way.'"

The Obama White House is clueless. When pressed to explain why the administration was negotiating with the Muslim Brotherhood, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said this:

"It's a fact that Egypt's political landscape has changed, the actors have become more diverse, and our engagement reflects that. The point is that we will judge Egypt's political actors by how they act, not by their religious affiliation."

The actors may have changed, but it is laughable to suggest they have simply become "more diverse." And while Carney seemingly implied that those concerned about the Muslim Brotherhood were anti-Islamic bigots, the fact is the Muslim Brotherhood's actions will be dictated by its religious affiliation.

ObamaCare A Budget Buster

A new report from George Mason University suggesting that ObamaCare would add as much as $500 billion to the national debt is making headlines and prompting a fierce counterattack from the White House. But this really shouldn't surprise anyone.

Critics of ObamaCare have always contended that the new entitlement would cost more. The government has a horrible track record of cost estimates. And Obama's argument that you could cover everybody, offer better coverage and save money in the process was nonsense. Not surprisingly, Obama now says he wants us to run our cars on algae too.

But here's something many Americans have likely forgotten. When Obama pitched his plan to Congress in 2009, he made this bold statement: "First, I will not sign a plan that adds one dime to our deficits -- either now or in the future.  I will not sign it if it adds one dime to the deficit, now or in the future, period." But like so many of Obama's promises -- from not raising taxes on middle class families to closing GITMO to cutting the deficit in half -- it was a lie.

Speaking of ObamaCare, check out my Politico column today taking Obama to task for his seriously flawed view of the Constitution.

The Buffett Rule: Rhetoric Over Substance

Barack Obama hit the campaign trail today. He went to the critical swing state of Florida to make his case for raising taxes. In his speech, Obama highlighted the so-called Buffett rule, which aims to guarantee that individuals making $1 million a year or more pay at least 30% of their income in taxes. While it may make for a good sound bite to suggest that a billionaire like Warren Buffett should pay a higher tax rate than his secretary, it is nothing more than rhetoric over substance.

The Buffett rule is not a serious proposal. The Associated Press reported that it would raise $47 billion over ten years. That's less than $5 billion a year when Obama's running deficits well in excess of $1 trillion a year! Moreover, it would only further complicate the tax code by creating yet another alternative minimum tax.

But it is also comparing apples to oranges, and it demonstrates how willing Obama is to demagogue any issue. Warren Buffett isn't paying a 15% tax on his earned income. That is the rate that every American pays on investment income, which is taxed differently for very good reasons than earned income such as salaries. But Obama is counting on most Americans not realizing this critical difference and falling for his class warfare rhetoric that preys on envy.

As today's Wall Street Journal notes, capital gains taxes are scheduled to go up to 20% on January 1, 2013. ObamaCare includes a 3.8% tax on investment income, taking the rate to 23.8%. And if Obama succeeds in imposing the Buffett rule, the tax on investment income would double to at least 30%. Yet history has repeatedly demonstrated that lower capital gains rates -- not higher rates -- yield more revenue.

Unfortunately, our community organizer-in-chief doesn't understand fundamental economics nor does he care too. During a 2008 debate, he told ABC's Charlie Gibson that he supported raising capital gains taxes as a matter of "fairness," regardless of whether it is sound economic policy or not.  

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