I’ve been out of town for a couple of days. Time to catch up.
While I was on vacation, I finished reading Thomas Sowell’s marvelous book The Vision of the Anointed. It was a fantastic read! Many of my favorite current affairs books leave me wanting to strangle some liberal, just to make me feel better. So, I balance them with the heavy scholarly books, which are much more about principles, and take a lot longer to read. I get two benefits from these books–a grounding in true conservative principles, and time to cool off. Dr. Sowell’s book is a good balance of both.
In it, he explains that a good number of our population, especially of the academic variety but also many of those who simply have higher degrees, feel that they are exclusively qualified to lead us into the future; that only they have the vision to see what America really needs to be great. Right now you’re thinking, “Cool! A good book about Liberals.” Well, you won’t be entirely disappointed, but Dr. Sowell only occasionally mentions Liberals or Liberalism and does not point to them as the sole focus of his book. I came to realize, while reading the last few chapters of the book, that Dr. Sowell’s focus is on anyone who can be counted among the self-anointed, including Conservatives. No-one is immune from this self-aggrandizing vision.
Well, how interesting that Chris Cannon refers to the everyday folks here in Utah as boors (props to Brad Reneer at reneer.org). Here is a fine example of what Dr. Sowell writes about. Chris Cannon thinks the reason he was beaten in the primary was the low voter turnout. That Utahans don’t care enough to vote in numbers great enough to ensure a cannon victory. Well, after doing some analysis on the Utah County clerk’s Statement of Votes Cast, it appears that low voter turnout had little to do with Cannon’s ouster.
For example, in Provo’s 8th voting precinct, of 1366 registered Republican voters, only 6 made it out to vote and all 6 voted for Cannon. Conversely, in one American Fork precinct, the voter turnout was over 40%, yet Jason Chaffetz won that precinct with 60% of the votes.
Some other interesting results came out of Mapleton. You’d think that Mapleton would have been locked down for Cannon, but Cannon won in only two precincts there (I’m guessing the one in which he lives). Additionally, the Mapleton precinct with the highest and lowest turnout rates (24% and 16%) went to Cannon, but the 2nd and 3rd highest (21% and 17%) went to Chaffetz.
Overall, voter turnout was very low at less than 10%. But when the results are broken down by precinct, it becomes obvious that it would not have mattered if the voter turnout were higher. Cannon still would have lost. Perhaps Mr. Cannon should reflect on this truth. Over the years he has become one of the “anointed,” and out of step with reality. One of the things Thomas Sowell teaches us is those with the vision of the anointed find myriad ways to insulate themselves from reality. Chris Cannon is doing exactly that now.
I said in an earlier post that it was time for Mr. Cannon to step aside, in large part because he had reached the pinnacle of his power. Judging from his reaction to the election, I’m comfortable knowing I called it right.
(On a side note, I told Jason that we was going to win the nomination back at the Convention)
On a great win in the face of tremendous odds.
Chris Cannon seemed to have everything going for him: endorsements of most of Utah’s Republican leadership, name recognition, a bigger budget, experience from previous campaigns, PAC money from outside Utah, all that and yet volunteerism and a great grass roots effort were able to unseat him in a near landslide.
Everyone thought that the 59%-41% vote at the State convention was a fluke, but here it is again repeated in the Republican primary. Obviously Jason has something to say that resonates with voters. Too bad Chris Cannon was more interested in listening to outside voices.
I spent the evening at Chaffetz Headquarters in Springville. At about 11:00 PM, Chris Cannon called to offer his congratulations, and to concede the race for Utah’s Third congressional District.
The totals as of right now (with all but one rural precinct reporting) are:
- Jason Chaffetz – 59.96% (27,266)
- Chris Cannon – 40.04% (18,208)
In his acceptance speech, Mr. Chaffetz thanked Mr. Cannon for his service to the community, which was a nice gesture.
There was a point during the evening where Mr. Cannon said something that served to solidify our feelings about him. He told a local reporter that he was disappointed in the low turnout, and said that it aserved as a lesson to the people of Utah; that if they want good representation, they’re going to have to get out and vote. The comment drew a lot of cat-calls from people at Chaffetz headquarters.
To me, it was reminiscent of another comment that was made several years ago. When Al Gore lost the presidential election in 2000, one of the Democratic leaders was interviewed at the State Capitol. Her comment made my blood boil. She said, as closely as I can recall, “The people have spoken, and if they want to drive this ship of state into the ground, that’s their business.”
Now I know Mr. Cannon didn’t say exactly that, but it certainly felt a lot like it. I am convinced that Washington has historically attracted people who think like that; who think they know better than us benighted masses. Chris Cannon has called for transparency in earmarks. What is really needed to overcome this effect is transparency in government. Washington needs to be a fishbowl, not an opaque bubble. Then nobody could say, “Well, you just don’t understand how things work back there.” That’s always a red flag for me. It says three things, 1) Washington is a closed society that, 2) the politicians think we aren’t bright enough to understand, and 3) we couldn’t get things done there because we aren’t part of the clique.
Here’s hoping Jason Chaffetz breaks it wide open!
Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R-Ga.) is circulating a pledge among House members that signifies their willingness to rely more heavily on our own, domestic resources.
As of 4:00 PM MDT on June 17, 2008, Congressman Chris Cannon’s name is not on the list. Why not? Maybe he’s just too busy talking about it.
Those who have signed to date:
Lynn Westmoreland (R-Ga.)
Tom Price (R-Ga.)
Paul Broun (R-Ga.)
Phil Gingrey (R-Ga.)
Patrick McHenry (R-NC)
Wally Herger (R-Calif.)
George Radanovich (R-Calif.)
Pat Tiberi (R-Ohio)
Mike Conaway (R-Texas)
John Culberson (R-Texas)
Tom Reynolds (R-NY)
Greg Walden (R-Ore.)
Bill Shuster (R-Pa.)
Thaddeus McCotter (R-Mich.)
Dan Burton (R-Ind.)
Judy Biggert (R-Ill.)
Tom Feeney (R-Fla.)
Tom Latham (R-Iowa)
Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.)
I got an email earlier today from my friends at the Utah Republican Assembly. It was forwarded from Bay Buchanan, a nationally known Conservative pundit and author of The Extreme Makeover of Hillary Rodham-Clinton. Ms. Buchanan was US Treasurer from 1981-1983, and she was awarded 2007 Woman of the Year by the Claire Booth Luce Policy Institute. She converted to the LDS Church in 1976 (not that it makes any difference to us folks here in Utah…end sarcasm).
The letter says it all.
The race in Utah is heating up and our man, Jason Chaffetz, is closing in on one of La Raza’s favorite congressman, Chris Cannon. You remember the Cannon-he’s famous for saying that in Utah, “We don’t often times make the distinction between legal and illegal [immigrants]”
Two weeks ago, when in Utah for my son’s wedding, I made of point of having lunch with Jason and his wife. I wanted to be certain he was the kind of candidate who deserved the endorsement of Team America and your support as well.
I am excited to tell you he is all that and more. Solid on the issues, Tancredo-good on immigration-Jason is also tough and gutsy. He will not buckle under pressure. Jason is exactly what we need in Washington.
I just spoke with Jason and he is really thrilled with the feel of the campaign. As well he should be-he has closed to within 2% of Cannon!!!
But he needs our help if he is to beat Cannon. The establishment, ethnic lobbyists, and corporate buddies are once again pouring money into Cannon’s coffers. They know he is a solid vote for their amnesty and guest worker bills. They will do all they can to keep Cannon in Congress-and Jason out.
Jason’s knows he needs to get his message right to the people with strong radio ads. He has already cut the ads-now he needs to raise the money to get them on air!
And Chris Cannon is up to his old tricks. His website has an outrageously misleading video on immigration in which Cannon claims to be against amnesty!! We need to help Jason get the facts out about Cannon’s record and Jason will win this congressional seat.
He needs our help and he needs it now. If there is anyway you can make a contribution to him please do so TODAY. Jason has promised me that all the money Team America raises for him will be used to buy radio Your generous contribution will be used for Jason’s radio buy.
If you want to make your contribution directly to his campaign at his website. Otherwise contribute to Team America and mark in the comment section “For Jason”. We will then send Jason-overnight-a check for the total amount of earmarked contributions. (Team America keeps no portion of contributions earmarked for candidates.)
Thanks again for everything you do to protect and secure this nation.
2% is likely within the statistical margin of error. Jason can win this election. The people of Utah are tired of Cannon’s empty rhetoric and constant inaction. Glenn Beck told his listeners today about the 6,000 people who have been killed along our border with Mexico over the past couple of years by violent gangs. Our legislators knew almost nothing about it. This is why we need strength in Congress. We need someone who can shake those dullards out of their sleepy comfort. Congress needs a new spine. Chris Cannon has failed us in that regard.
Let’s really hit Cannon hard in the next few weeks. Go Jason!
I got an email from Chris Cannon’s campaign today. In it he says, “While I have represented the Third District for several years, I firmly believe I must earn your support anew with each election.” I wonder if he thought that one through first. Of course it’s true: he’s had to convince us anew every two years.
And earlier today I was listening to Glenn Beck (man, I love listening to him). He was talking about how stupid we are, always electing the same people to represent us in Washington, as if somehow things are going to be different this time.
I was reminded of Einstein’s definition of insanity, i.e. repeatedly doing the same thing, but expecting a different result. Are we collectively insane? Why do we send the same people back time after time, only for them to give us excuses for why they couldn’t change something. It wouldn’t have to be a lot–just something…anything!
So instead we get Chris Cannon telling us that insanity would be voting him out of office at the pinnacle of his power and influence. I’m saying that insanity is keeping people in power when they have reached the pinnacle of power and influence. That’s why we don’t have constitutionally mandated term limits. We are supposed to use the elections box to enforce the unwritten term limits, which is determined when those people have amassed too much power.
The Constitution is all about checks on, and balances of, power. If we are not using our vote to remove those who have been there too long, we are becoming insane. We are asking for someone to stay in office and continue to give us things we want at the expense of the rest. It’s got to stop!
We need a change. I’m not talking about Barak Obama’s change for change’s sake. I’m talking real change; the kind of change where things happen that make life better. For the last umpteen years, Congress has been working hard to make sure our lives become more and more miserable. You can thank the Liberal Democrats for that. And you can thank the weak-kneed Republicans for not putting a stop to it when they had the chance.
We could have been drilling in ANWR by now, and selling the gas to other countries for a hefty profit. We could have been drilling off the continental shelf by now, and telling Saudi Arabia and other producing nations, “No thanks! We don’t need your oil…We have plenty of our own.” We could still be paying under $2.00/gallon for gas. But Congress apparently believes that we should be paying record prices for gas, that we ought to be miserable.
It’s time to stick it to them. Throw all the bums out and lock the doors behind them. If they cannot come to an agreement where we get unfettered access to the natural energy resources in our own backyard, if they cannot agree on using the cleanest, must efficient source of power available today (that’s nuclear power), then it’s time to throw them all out and put new ones in.
The Environmental Special Interests are running Congress now, and it’s time to take it back. The Declaration of Independence says we can; Sanity and Duty say we must. Tell Chris Cannon we’re not buying it this time; were sending him home. Send Jason Chaffetz to Congress.
Jason Chaffetz scored a huge political victory today at the Utah State Republican Convention. Despite having been outspent 9 to 1 by Chris Cannon, Chaffetz handed Cannon a stunning upset and missed the nomination outright by only 6 votes. A candidate who wins 60% of the delegates does not have to face an opponent in a primary election. Cannon and Chaffetz are expected to face off in the primary election later this year.
David Leavitt was eliminated in the second round of voting, leaving Cannon and Chaffetz to battle it out for the nomination. After his defeat, Leavitt immediately encouraged his supporters to vote for Chris Cannon. Similar things occurred in the Presidential race between Romney, McCain, and Huckabee that left Utahns generally with a bitter taste, and it showed at the convention–delegates openly booed when Leavitt supporters appeared on the floor carrying Cannon campaign signs, and would not immeidately leave when instructed to do so. Things were only made worse when Leavitt and Cannon themselves appeared together on the delegate floor during the final round of voting.
Many delegates were heard to say that the stunt cost Leavitt his political career, and may have cost Cannon his congressional seat. It was certainly out of order. But it really stood Jason Chaffetz in good standing, able to capitalize on the Cannon/Leavitt gaffe.