West Virginia Democratic Gov. Earl Tomblin has issued an extraordinary statement of no support for President Obama’s re-election. There are twice as many registered Democrats in WV as Republicans, Democrats have controlled both houses of the WV legislature for decades. Tomblin, as governor, is the leader of the state’s Democratic Party who should be fully supporting an incumbent Democratic president for re-election. But he can’t. If Obama’s policies are so bad that a Democratic governor has to publicly declare he is not supporting his re-election, then how do Democrats in states bordering West Virginia feel about those same policies? Places like Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia where many believe the general election will be decided.
A second political leader in as many weeks in West Virginia has admitted a struggle on whether to vote for the reelection of President Barack Obama.
Last week, U.S. Senator Joe Manchin said he was not jumping in one way or the other in the race for President. He was letting it play out.
Tuesday, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s campaign released the following statement from the governor on the President’s race:
“I do not believe that either candidate has a real understanding of what is important to West Virginia.
“As Governor, I go to work every day to stand up for West Virginians and create jobs. As Governor, I know that I must work hard every day to earn the trust and the votes of my constituents. Neither President Obama nor Governor Romney has earned my vote at this point.
“On the one hand, Mitt Romney is supporting policies that will end Medicare and Social Security as we know it. His policies will put more burdens on West Virginia families who are simply trying to make ends meet. On the other hand, President Obama has apparently made it his mission to drive the backbone of West Virginia’s economy, coal and the energy industry, out of business. That will not only hurt thousands of West Virginia families, it will destroy the economic fabric of our state.
“As a loyal member of the Democratic Party and as Governor for our State, I will continue do everything I can, including suing the EPA, to get the President to change the misguided policies that are hurting West Virginians.”
Via Heritage | Rebuilding Iraq during the raging insurgency was no easy task. It required ingenuity, courage and innovative ways to get the job done—sometimes with equipment that offered little protection from the car bombs and rocket attacks launched by America’s enemies.
Kachejian told his harrowing story in a book called “SUVs Suck In Combat.” It chronicles some of the war stories that Americans never heard about the readiness challenges facing our military. The Heritage Foundation chose to profile him as part of Protect America Month, which showcases why we must commit to protecting the United States in an increasingly dangerous world.
Breaking into the national spotlight over the last 24 hours. The New York Times reports today, The half-court basketball shot that Senator Scott P. Brown sank on Friday during a visit to a youth center — recorded by his staff and widely circulated on the Web — was just the beginning. So far this week, Mr. Brown, a Republican, has won endorsements by Democratic former mayors of Boston and Worcester, given a speech emphasizing his votes across party lines and released a radio ad calling on Americans to “work together now” despite partisan differences. By contrast, Elizabeth Warren, his main Democratic challenger for the United States Senate seat once held by Edward M. Kennedy, has been engulfed in controversy stemming from accusations by the Brown camp that she sought an unfair advantage in her academic career by claiming American Indian ancestry….“He’s touring the state touting his bipartisanship while she’s on the defensive with a diversity issue,” said Peter Ubertaccio, a professor of political science at Stonehill College in Easton, Mass. “The juxtaposition is not good for her.”…. David Paleologos, a pollster at Suffolk University in Boston, said it seemed unlikely that Ms. Warren could move past the issue unless she addressed it head on. “Now, it’s like every day there’s some new discovery or some new twist,” he said. “It’s not even about ancestry anymore; it’s about gaming the system and why did you do this?”
- And National Public Radio reports that even Warren’s own supporters are growing disenchanted – Warren supporter Paul Venecko of Boston is disappointed that she claimed native heritage at all. He’s also American Indian — part Narragansett. “I’m a quarter, and it’s so far recessed behind me that I really can’t reference it for any particular reason, and I just feel like Elizabeth Warren probably has even less reason,” he says. Venecko had been planning to vote for her. Now he’s less certain.
- Meanwhile, Warren continues to get hammered on the home front as her campaign is unable – or unwilling – to address basic questions behind her conflicting stories. As the Boston Herald reports today, Warren’s embattled campaign has been rocked by questions about whether she used her Native American status to further her career. Under fire from the press, campaign aides scrambled late Monday night and found what they claim is a link to her Cherokee lineage — a great-great-great-grandmother on her mother’s side. Warren aides clammed up yesterday and refused to answer questions about why she stopped listing herself in the AALS directory after 1995. Around that time, Harvard Law School started boasting that Warren was their first minority female professor.
- And while there are a number of columns slamming Warren today, don’t miss this one from Boston radio show host Michael Graham who writes this in the Boston Herald – I’ve known for a fact since I was a little boy that I was part Cherokee. I’ve even seen photos of my great-great-grandmother. But, unlike Princess “Rides In Limos” Warren, it never occurred to me to do what “Rides In Limos” Warren has done, and use my distant ethnic background to my advantage…. Goodbye, principled liberal Liz Warren. Hello Princess Pinochio-Hantas.
- Finally, don’t miss this story from The Daily Caller — It would not have been “appropriate” for Massachusetts Senate hopeful Elizabeth Warren to claim to be an American Indian minority if she did so solely to get a professional advantage, says a former U.S. senator who was once the only Native American in Congress. “I think if she used it just to get some kind of advantage — whatever it was — like a job application or something, then that’s probably not appropriate,” former Colorado Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell told The Daily Caller in an interview on Tuesday.
From the Boston Globe (editorial):
Harvard Law School was stretching its credibility when it boasted, in a 1996 press release, that Professor Elizabeth Warren was a Native American; she has, according to family lore and long-ago marital records, some Native American ancestry, but she wasn’t a tribe member and, by her own account, didn’t hold herself out as a Native American. Her ancestry may have been a small point of diversity on a largely white-male faculty, but it was a disservice to students to suggest she was offering the perspective of a Native American.
Now, in the midst of a Senate campaign, the question facing Warren is whether she played any role in Harvard’s decision to tout her as Native American; on Friday, when the story first came to light in the Boston Herald, she said she did not know of the press release, and had not claimed that she was a minority for hiring purposes. If so, it seems likely that Warren, like many other people with some degree of mixed background, was simply enmeshed in an academic culture that values diversity but lacks any standards for who should be counted as a minority.
The story didn’t quite end there. On Monday, when the Globe and other outlets reported that Warren had been listed as a minority professor in the American Association of Law Schools desk book for eight years, her campaign changed its tune slightly: “The simple fact is Elizabeth is proud of her heritage,” her spokeswoman said in a prepared statement.
From the Associated Press:
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana Sen. Richard Lugar’s allies have largely disappeared from the television airwaves just days before Tuesday’s primary, a sign that even friends of the six-term Republican think he’s in trouble and could lose to tea party-backed challenger Richard Mourdock.
Mourdock’s backers, meanwhile, have stepped up their criticism, casting Lugar, 80, as too moderate for the Republican-leaning state and out of touch after 36 years in Washington. Total ad spending intended to benefit Mourdock was pushing toward $2.3 million and could top that in the final week.
“What’s happened to Dick Lugar?” says the narrator of the latest ad by the Club for Growth. “He was a respected statesman, a leader. Then he became part of the problem, joining the liberals in voting for record debt, bailouts and tax hikes.” The conservative national group has spent $1.4 million while Mourdock has spent $790,000.
Lugar, who was elected in 1976 and has forged a Senate career dominated by foreign policy, is one of the most vulnerable incumbents at a time of strong anti-establishment sentiment in some parts of the country. Questions about his residency and time spent in the state have dogged him throughout the primary. Even the endorsement of popular Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels may not spare him from defeat by Mourdock, the state treasurer.
Public polling shows a competitive race, but internal surveys taken by Republicans indicate Mourdock may have a slight edge.
From the Texas Tribune:
Five days before he is scheduled to appear at a Tea Party rally in Austin alongside U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, former Texas Solicitor General Ted Cruz released two new TV ads highlighting supporters from around the state, including several conservative activists.
“I’m Standing with Cruz” is set to air statewide on both cable and broadcast networks starting Wednesday, a campaign spokesman said. While Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and former Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert have already aired ads on the more expensive broadcast networks, this is the Cruz campaign’s first ad that won’t air solely on cable.
The ad shows a series of people affirming their support for Cruz in the U.S. Senate race, including Dave Nalle, chairman of the Republican Liberty Caucus, and Konni Burton, vice president of the NE Tarrant Tea Party.
A second ad, called “Conservatives on Dewhurst,” features many of the same people from the first ad as well as former Texas Republican Party Chairwoman Cathie Adams criticizing Dewhurst for his record and his campaign’s recent attacks on Cruz for Cruz’s work as an appellate lawyer representing a Chinese tire firm against an American businessman.
“David Dewhurst thinks I care more about Chinese tires than his tax-and-spend record,” Maggie Wright of Burleson says in the ad.
At the end of March, we learned members of the United States Congress were looking into drafting a bill that would disallow employers from asking potential hires for private login information for their Facebook accounts. States had been instituting laws on their own, but after more and more stories came out about people feeling pressured to hand over their private information by someone in the position of giving them a job, Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal said enough was enough — this is something that needs to be dealt with on a national level. And now, the Social Networking Online Protection Act has made it to the House of Representatives while the Senate continues to work on its own version. Important question: Do we get to call it SNOPA? I’m going to call it SNOPA.
SNOPA was introduced on Friday by Reps. Eliot Engel (NY) and Jan Schakowsky (Illinois) and would ban employers from requiring someone to hand over their username or password to a social networking account. In case you’re keeping track of party lines, Engel and Schakowsky are Democrats, but Rep. Patrick McHenry of North Carolina is a Republican and was also working on a draft. So, this could very well have a lot of bipartisan support. We can all agree on this: human resources should not have the right to demand to poke around in our private business. More
Skywatchers take note: The biggest full moon of the year is due to arrive this weekend.
The moon will officially become full Saturday (May 5) at 11:35 p.m. EDT. And because this month’s full moon coincides with the moon’s perigee — its closest approach to Earth — it will also be the year’s biggest.
The moon will swing in 221,802 miles (356,955 kilometers) from our planet, offering skywatchers a spectacular view of an extra-big, extra-bright moon, nicknamed a supermoon.
And not only does the moon’s perigee coincide with full moon this month, but this perigee will be the nearest to Earth of any this year, as the distance of the moon’s close approach varies by about 3 percent, according to meteorologist Joe Rao, SPACE.com’s skywatching columnist. This happens because the moon’s orbit is not perfectly circular.
This month’s full moon is due to be about 16 percent brighter than average. In contrast, later this year on Nov. 28, the full moon will coincide with apogee, the moon’s farthest approach, offering a particularly small and dim full moon. More
Life insurance is a crucial part of financial planning no matter your stage of life.
An up to date, sensible policy can keep your family from financial disaster if you die, but deciding which type is best for your life situation can be tricky. Both whole and term life insurance policies allow you to lock in the same monthly payment over the life of a policy (at your choosing), with a lump sum to be paid to the beneficiary upon death. But whole life insurance policies also come with stock, bond and money market investments, and some tax advantages.
Life insurance policies get more expensive as we age, and those over age 50 should keep close track of when their policies expire, advises Scott Page, CEO of life settlement provider Lifeline.
You should reevaluate your policy every few years to make sure it still fits your lifestyle. For instance, a spousal death or divorce changes the need for protection, and grown children may lessen the need for insurance coverage, according to Page.
Experts say there are often better ways to invest funds than in expensive, whole life insurance policies, and that a term life insurance policy tends to make the most financial sense if:
You seek only a death benefit. When the insured dies, the policy pays the face amount to a beneficiary, says Philip Cioppa, managing principal and chief investment officer of Arbol Financial Strategies. You can buy term life insurance for periods of one to 30 years, and the sum is guaranteed. More