Saturday, June 25, 2016

Charlie Meadows' 2016 primary picks

by Charlie Meadows (former president of OCPAC)

It has become a tradition for me to publish my political tip sheet before important elections.  These are my opinions of who I believe ought to win, not necessarily who I believe will win.  This is a very important election cycle as we have the largest number of open seats since 2004, the first year term limits were fully implemented.

I will be a little more limited this year as I simply have not done the volume of research I have done in the past.  Some folks may have information to which I am not privy and therefore have a different opinion, which is just fine.  I will do the Oklahoma Legislature first, then the congressional seats.

Oklahoma Senate

SD 1  (Vinita, Jay, Afton, etc.)  YOUR CHOICE - Of the three Republican candidates running, none of them came to OCPAC for our grueling interview process.

SD 3  (Stillwell, Grove, Beggs, etc.)  WAYNE SHAW - Senator Shaw is the incumbent with a lifetime average of 70% on the Conservative Index, which is not great, but acceptable to OCPAC.

SD 9  (Muskogee, Tahlequah, etc.)  YOUR CHOICE - I could not endorse either of these candidates as one is arrogant and full of selfish ambition, while the other is one of the radical government education candidates wanting to dump tons of additional taxes down the deep, dark hole of education without the reforms necessary to produce good quality education.

SD 12  (Sapulpa, Bristow, Oilton, etc.)  YOUR CHOICE - Rep. Leewright scored a paltry 53% on the 2015 Conservative Index.  I know nothing about the other candidate.

SD 13  (Ada, Pauls Valley, etc.)  YOUR CHOICE - None of the three candidates came to OCPAC for our interview process.  I would think Jet McCoy (of rodeo and TV fame) would have the best shot at winning.  McCortney is one of the radical government school candidates.  I know nothing about Mr. Howard.

SD 15  (Norman, Moore)  ROB STANDRIDGE - Senator Standridge has a 75% lifetime average on the Conservative Index.  He is one of the better Republican Senators and should be re-elected.

SD 17  (Shawnee, Choctaw, Luther, etc.)  BROOKE McGOWAN - OCPAC endorsed Brooke McGowan after our interview process.  Good lawmakers are people who will read and attend meetings and seminars to educate themselves.  As an example Brooke and her husband attended a seminar hosted by Pastor Paul Blair about a year and a half ago on the Islamic agenda to take over America.  Brooke and Paul already have a working relationship, and I believe they will work well together in the Senate.  On the other hand, Senator Sharp was OCPAC’s RINO (Republican In Name Only) award winner last year.  His score of 50% on the Conservative Index ranked him almost at the bottom—thirty-eight out of forty.  I warned people four years ago that Sharp was not a conservative, but not enough voters listened, and he beat the conservative candidate by less than one hundred votes in the primary run-off.  If you live in the district, please vote for Brooke McGowan to improve the quality of the Senate.

SD 19  (Enid area)  GREG INGLE - OCPAC endorsed Greg Ingle for the seat.  I also met with Dr. Vanhooser, one of the other strong candidates in the race.  Should he win the primary, I think he could also make a fine lawmaker and provide a second opinion to the liberal Dr. Yen in the Senate.

SD 21  (Stillwater)  YOUR CHOICE - I know nothing about the two Republicans, but it would be hard for either of them to be much worse than the retiring Sen. Halligan who turned out to be a disaster.

SD 23  (Blanchard, Tuttle, Chickasha, etc.)  KEVIN CROW - Crow received OCPAC’s endorsement and is an inspiring history professor at the university in Chickasha.  While he was weak on educational choice, he is very principled and will not be a go-along-to-get-along Republican if elected.  The Senate needs an independent personality like Kevin.  He is already well educated on many of the issues faced by the members of the legislature.

SD 25  (Bixby, Broken Arrow, Jenks, etc.)  JOE NEWHOUSE – Joe is a former staffer of Congressman Bridenstine.  As a navy pilot, Newhouse actually has a few more carrier landings than Bridenstine who has about 180.  I believe Mr. Newhouse does not yet have a fully developed conservative ideology, but I found him very open and teachable.

SD 27  (Woodward, Moreland, and the panhandle)  YOUR CHOICE - Sen. Marlatt has a 62% lifetime Conservative Index score, which is only a couple of points above our RINO nominee threshold.  I know nothing of his challenger.

SD 29  (Bartlesville area)  YOUR CHOICE - Oliver is the radical government education candidate, and I know nothing about Julie Daniels.

SD 31  (Duncan, Elgin, Addington, Cash area)  YOUR CHOICE - Hasenbeck and Kidd are the radical government education candidates, and I know nothing about Mr. Rodriguez.

SD 33  (Broken Arrow area)  NATHAN DAHM - Sen. Dahm was OCPAC’s Senator of the Year for 2015 and was previously our Freshman of the Year.  With a lifetime average of 98% on the Conservative Index, he may be the finest in the Senate.  You can bet the two challengers are liberal compared to Nathan Dahm.

SD 37  (Sand Springs, Tulsa area)  YOUR CHOICE - Senator Newberry scored a 53% on the Conservative Index this year and has a 64% lifetime average.  Mr. Jackson is a radical government education candidate, and Mrs. Patterson got a late start and lacks resources.

SD 39  (East Tulsa)  AMANDA TEEGARDEN - As one of the founders and executive director of OK-SAFE (Oklahomans for Sovereignty and Free Enterprise), Amanda is supremely prepared to be one of the finest senators that could be elected.  She is also one of the finest researchers I have ever met.  She is head and shoulders above the other candidates and was endorsed by OCPAC.

SD 41  (Central & East Edmond)  PAUL BLAIR - This is probably the most important Senate race in the state for this election cycle.  Paul has a well-developed conservative ideology, natural leadership skills, and strong Christian character.  Mr. Pugh is probably a nice fellow, but an interview in the Edmond Sun reveals he would care more about going along with establishment Republican leadership than being an independent lawmaker representing the people of the district.  Mr. Tallent is not a conservative, but a progressive Republican.

SD 43  (Purcell, Washington, Duncan area)  COREY BROOKS - While Senator Brooks’s lifetime average of 67% on the Conservative Index leaves a lot to be desired, his opponent, Mr. Scott, is one of the radical government education candidates.

SD 45  (Southwest OKC & Mustang)  KYLE LOVELESS - Senator Loveless scored an acceptable 80% on the Conservative Index this year.  His work to bring justice to asset forfeiture laws is extremely valuable, and we must keep him in office to continue that fight.

Oklahoma House of Representatives

While we have a good crop of Senate candidates, I was disappointed with the caliber of the House candidates, at least of the ones that came to OCPAC.  Many did not attend; therefore, I will only address races I know something about.  In addition, while there will be a lot of Republican candidates on the ballot in November against Democrats, many of the primaries were not contested.

HD 27  (Tecumseh, Wanette, Norman area)  Representative Cockroft has a 78% lifetime average on the Conservative Index and is one of the most conservative members of the legislature.

HD 36  (Pawhuska, Hominy, Skiatook area)  SEAN ROBERTS - Representative Roberts has a lifetime Conservative Index score of 76%, which is good enough to warrant his re-election.

HD 39  (Northwest Edmond)  MICHAEL BUOY - While I was disappointed that Mr. Buoy did not attend our interview process, he has attended several other meetings, as well as the Patriot Pastors luncheons.  I know he has been given important materials to read to fully develop a strong conservative ideology.

HD 43 (Yukon area)  JOHN PAUL JORDAN - Representative Jordan scored 83% his first year in office.  The other two primary candidates are very liberal compared to John Paul.

HD 50 (Duncan, Comanche area)  DENNIS JOHNSON - Rep. Johnson has a lifetime average on the Conservative Index of 78%, so should be re-elected.

HD 58 (Meno, Cherokee, Woodard area)  LUKE DOANE - OCPAC endorsed Mr. Doane after he really impressed our members.  He is very sharp and has a conservative ideology far more developed than most candidates.  His up-side is huge!

HD 60 (Hinton, El Reno, western Yukon area) - YOUR CHOICE - Two of the three candidates, both teachers, came to OCPAC for our interview process.  Neither of the candidates had raised much financial support, and each had ideological strengths and weaknesses.  OCPAC did not endorse a candidate this race.

HD 66 (Sand Springs area)  Rep. Jadine Nollan is the incumbent, scoring a paltry 23% on this year’s Conservative Index.  Mrs. DeLozier, her challenger, came to OCPAC, and our members decided not to endorse her.  Mrs. DeLozier got a late start and has not raised much support, making her chances slim.  Delozier was a very pleasant person.

HD 70 (east central Tulsa area)  KEN WALKER - Rep. Walker has an 81% lifetime average on the Conservative Index and should therefore be re-elected.

HD 82 (OKC, West Edmond area)  KEVIN CALVEY - Kevin scored 80% on the Conservative Index this year and therefore should be re-elected.

HD 83 (Edmond area)  RANDY McDANIEL - Rep. McDaniel scored 90% on last year’s Conservative Index and certainly should be re-elected.  His work to restore the viability of Oklahoma’s retirement funds without a tax increase has been vital.

HD 84 (Bethany, Warr Acres area)  YOUR CHOICE - OCPAC members decided not to endorse Mr. Cagle.  The other candidates support the radical government education agenda.  Look for Tammy West to win this one without a run-off.

HD 85 (North central OKC)  Nick Berry has attended OCPAC meetings on several occasions, and we even had candidate forum between Nick Berry and Matt Jackson.

HD 87  (OKC, Warr Acres area) - I strongly disagree with the members of OCPAC who did not endorse Mr. Granger, though the vote was very close.  Based on our lengthy survey and tough interview process, there were only a couple of issues of concern with Mr. Granger.  It is my hope that our members do not fall into the trap of perfection becoming the enemy of good.

HD 96  (East Edmond, Arcadia, Luther, Jones area) - LEWIS MOORE – Rep. Moore scored 90% on the latest Conservative Index and certainly should be re-elected over the two less conservative candidates challenging him.

HD 101 (Midwest City, Choctaw area) - TESS TEAGUE - OCPAC members endorsed Tess with her conservative positions, energy, and money.  She does work at the Capitol, so if elected she will be ahead of the learning curve for most freshmen lawmakers.

Congress, U.S. House of Representatives

Let me try to make this easy.  What kind of representation do you want to see from our five U.S. Representatives?  Do you want loyal Republican establishment congressmen who go-along-to-get-along and only fight Obama and the progressive Democrats with less-than effective means and oftentimes worthless votes?  If so re-elect Cole, Lucas, Mullin, and Russell.  If, on the other hand, you want someone who will elect a non-establishment Speaker of the House and use the Constitution to rein-in the run-away Executive and Judicial branches of government, then be sure to re-elect Jim Bridenstine and replace the other four congressmen.

U.S. HD 1  JIM BRIDENSTINE - This will be Jim’s last term (he pledged only three, and he is a man of his word).  He is the best we have.

U.S. HD 2  JARRIN JACKSON - OCPAC endorsed Jackson after our interview process.  Of all the challengers, Mr. Jackson probably has the best chance of up-setting an incumbent.  Before filing date he had already raised nearly $100 thousand.  He is charismatic, hardworking, and has a far greater understanding of the Constitution than Representative Mullin.

U.S. HD 3  DESIREE BROWN - OCPAC did not make an endorsement in this race, but I have had an opportunity to visit with Desiree on two different occasions.  I am impressed with her convictions and understanding of the Constitution.  However, without resources and with a late start she has little to no chance of winning.  Frank Lucas has been in congress so long he is the epitome of what is wrong with congress.  His big campaign war chest allows him to hire slick professional ad agencies to produce commercials that effectively portray him as the best thing since sliced bread to an electorate which has little standard by which to measure a good or useless congressman.  Every time I hear his commercial featuring giggling California Valley Girls acting like Frank Lucas groupies, I want to puke.

U.S. HD 4  JAMES TAYLOR - OCPAC endorsed James Taylor, though candidate Shawn Roberts was also an impressive candidate.  Representative Cole is the biggest problem with the Republican party in the State of Oklahoma.  He is not a conservative, but rather a moderate who is now a major player in the Republican establishment in Washington.  Shaking down big-government advocates in Washington, Cole had $1.5 million in his war chest before this election cycle even began.  James Taylor is principled and would never become a go-along-to-get-along congressman.  He is a true conservative and a constitutionalist.

U.S. HD 4  FRANK VOLPE - Two years ago OCPAC endorsed Steve Russell.  In the primary run-off, I worked very hard to get Steve elected, even making robo-calls on Steve’s behalf.  While I personally love Steve and really appreciate some of the things he is trying to accomplish, I can no longer support him.  Unfortunately, Steve fell in with the Republican establishment from day one, instead of working alongside Jim Bridenstine.  His reasons for supporting Speaker Boehner are insulting to close political observers.  Also, his answer to me at a town hall meeting about his understanding of the difference between revolutionary and evolutionary Islam was insulting and was intended to pacify listeners.  OCPAC members endorsed Frank Volpe, who is also an accomplished retired military man.  Frank is running against Steve for all the right reasons.  He is very principled and would make a very good congressman if elected.

Thanks for your time and attention.  Again, some folks will have different opinions with some of my picks and that is fine.  I hope these picks are helpful to those looking for information.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Endorsement: Jarrin Jackson for Congress

When it comes to electing our public officials, integrity is important. When an elected official says they will do something, we need to be able to trust that they will keep their word. In the 2nd Congressional District race, we now face a crisis of integrity.

When Congressman Mullin first ran in 2012, he made a pledge to the voters that he would only serve three terms. Now that he is seeking his third term in Congress, Mullin has decided that the allure of power is too much to give up. He refuses to say he will keep his term limits pledge, because he's already made up his mind to break it.

That's why conservative leaders like Dr. Tom Coburn and Rep. George Faught have strongly endorsed Jarrin Jackson for Congress. Jackson is a former Army captain, a West Point graduate and Army Ranger with two Bronze Stars earned on tours in Afghanistan. He's a conservative who will make us proud.

Jarrin Jackson knows a thing or two about giving and keeping his word. He gave an oath to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic" -- and he's kept his pledge.

Honesty and integrity are important. On Tuesday, Republican voters have the opportunity to choose from two candidates: one who keeps his word, and one who won't. I hope that you will join me in voting for the integrity candidate, combat veteran Jarrin Jackson.

Jamison Faught

Thursday, June 23, 2016

BREXIT: UK votes to leave the European Union

In a historic referendum, the United Kingdom has voted to leave the European Union. As of 11:50pm CT, the vote total was 16,468,162 (51.7%) for Leave, and 15,387,695 (48.3%) to Remain.

I'm not expert on British/European politics, so I don't exactly know what the fallout will be, but essentially the UK is reclaiming their sovereignty from the EU government in Brussels. The UK has been a member-state of the European Union since 1975.

Results from the BBC (click link for live - screenshot is from 11:50pm):

InsideSources Poll Shows Mullin, Jackson in Close Race

Exclusive InsideSources Poll Shows Mullin, Jackson in Close Race
Mullin up 11, but “Informed Ballot” has Jackson leading by 6 points

Oklahoma Congressman Markwayne Mullin should have been set for an easy reelection campaign, but an exclusive poll conducted by InsideSources shows the race is unexpectedly tight leading into Tuesday’s primary.  Moreover, the more voters know about each candidate, the worse it is for Rep. Mullin.

“We found that the more likely voters found out about Rep. Mullin and Mr. Jackson, the more they tended to support the challenger, Mr. Jackson,” InsideSources publisher Shawn McCoy said.  “Now it’s just a matter of whether Mr. Jackson has the time and resources to inform the voters.”

Mullin, a two-term Republican incumbent, is facing a primary challenge from Jarrin Jackson, a combat veteran who recently won the endorsement of Tom Coburn, the popular former senator. Mullin has also recently drawn strong criticism from conservative groups aligned against legislation he’s proposed to bring federal regulation to Mixed Martial Arts competition. In a conservative House district, these challenges from his right have left Mullin on shaky ground.

Our exclusive poll found Mullin leading Jackson 51.7 percent to 40.2 percent, with 8 percent undecided in initial polling.

However, InsideSources asked a series of follow-up questions about candidate biographies and the attacks being lodged by conservatives opposing Mullin. Mullin has been mute in criticizing his lesser-known opponent, so attacks on Jackson were not included. In this test, known as an “educated ballot,” which is intended to simulate how voters may react to what they hear in the media and from other voters leading up to the primary, Jackson was catapulted to a lead of 45.8 percent to 39.6 percent, with 14.6 percent unsure of how they will vote.

The educated ballot test does not mean Jackson has the momentum to win. As is often the case with primary challengers running against incumbents, Jackson may not have the resources to reach voters with his message. Jackson has raised and spent a small fraction of Mullin’s war chest. According to the most recent filings to the Federal Election Commission, Mullin spent over $300,000 in the two-month period ahead of the primary. Jackson has spent less than $50,000.

While Senators Jim Inhofe and James Lankford have both endorsed Mullin for reelection, the surprise endorsement from Coburn seems to be in response to Mullin walking back a pledge he made in 2012 to run for no more than three terms in the House.

InsideSources told survey respondents about the endorsements, and read language to voters similar to what is found on each campaign’s website about candidate biographies and issue positions. Hearing positive biographical notes on Mullin made 64.7 percent of likely primary voters say they would be more apt to support him, while 58.4 percent found themselves more likely to support Jackson based on the lesser-known opponent’s military service and policy goals.

Voters were told of major conservative criticisms of Mullin, including his support for the Export-Import Bank, which critics argue supports corporate welfare for large companies. Respondents were also told Mullin is facing an ethics investigation for earning too much income outside Congress, and his business received hundreds of thousands of dollars in Obama Stimulus funding. Nearly 50 percent of likely voters said hearing this made them less likely to support Mullin. Conservative groups, including Heritage Action, have in the past made calls to voters in the district critical of Mullin on some of these points.

The InsideSources poll of 521 registered Republican voters in Oklahoma’s 2nd Congressional District was conducted June 20-22, and has a margin of error of +/-10% after applying a likely voter screen and demographic weighting.  Data was gathered via interactive voice response (IVR) calls. Out of 1,622 partial responses, 521 complete responses were gathered. Poll analysis was conducted by Praecones Analytica. InsideSources will be tracking races nationwide ahead of November’s elections.


Coburn talks Jackson, Bartlett, Bridenstine endorsements with Pat Campbell

Tulsa talk radio host Pat Campbell had former senator Tom Coburn on his program this morning to discuss Coburn's endorsements of Jarrin Jackson (2nd District), Dewey Bartlett (Tulsa mayor) and Jim Bridenstine (1st District).

The interview begins with the 2nd District race, and Coburn's reasoning on why he came out against incumbent Markwayne Mullin and supports his challenger, Jarrin Jackson.

Regarding Mullin, Coburn said, "Integrity is the only thing that really counts in politics. and when you tell somebody, you make a commitment to somebody that you're going to do something, and then you start wavering on that commitment, you have no standing with me at all after that." Coburn called Mullin after news broke that he was wavering on his term limits pledge, and Mullin still refused to say he would keep his pledge. In the interview, Coburn goes on to say "[Markwayne Mullin] doesn't have the integrity to keep his word, and to me that's the most important thing."

On Jarrin Jackson, Coburn said "He'll be another Jim Bridenstine if he's elected."

Campbell and Coburn talked about the Tulsa mayoral race. Coburn endorsed Dewey Bartlett in his first race, and supports him for reelection. Coburn appreciates Bartlett's business background and desire to serve Tulsa without making a career in politics. He went on to say "The criticisms I've heard of Dewey are minor in comparison to the risks of having some young guy with really no real world experience except politics - I mean, that's all there is, there's nothing there except politics - being the mayor of Tulsa."

When the conversation moved to the 1st District race, Coburn said "Bridenstine was the easiest endorsement I've ever done in my life. He votes right. Every time. I don't have to worry about how Jim Bridenstine votes, because he's going to look at the Constitution, he's going to look at limited government, he's going to vote that way. Every time, no matter what the rest of the Oklahoma delegation does."

Listen to the whole interview below:

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Bob Coburn, Arthur Hulbert endorse Hammons for SD9

John Tyler Hammons, former mayor of Muskogee and a Republican candidate for Senate District 9, has released endorsements from Muskogee Mayor Bob Coburn and former HD14 representative Arthur Hulbert.

Bob Coburn:

"John Tyler Hammons and I were competitors but then we became friends. We've worked together to improve our community. It's a testament to his faith, his character, and his ability to work together to bring about positive change. He's a hard worker, diligent, and smart. I am pleased to endorse John Tyler Hammons to be our next State Senator.

Arthur Hulbert: 

"John Tyler Hammons is a conservative Christian who shares our values and who works hard to defend them. He's the kind of young leader who does what is right even when nobody is looking. I got to know him when I was State Representative and I am pleased to endorse him to be our next State Senator."

Hammons is facing Dewayne Pemberton in the June 28th Republican primary for Senate District 9. Pemberton recently retired from a 36-year career in public education, which included being principal at both Hilldale High School and Muskogee High School.

Senate District 9 covers north and east portions of Muskogee County (excluding the Fort Gibson area) and southeast and central portions of Cherokee County. The heavily-Democratic seat is currently held by Earl Garrison (D-Muskogee), who is term-limited. Two Democrats are running - Tahlequah city councilor Stephen Highers and former HD14 candidate Jack Reavis.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

BROKE: Trump has less cash-on-hand than TOM COLE

One of Donald Trump's biggest claims during the primary was that he was self-funding, and wouldn't be needing campaign donations because he is so rich. That is, until he completely flip-flopped and started asking for donations and fundraising. Turns out that self-funding is easier said than done when most of your wealth is not in liquid assets.

Now, his campaign is practically broke. Want some illustrations?

At the end of May, the last reporting period, Trump's campaign had $1,289,507.76 in cash on hand. He raised $3,104,619.98 during the month of May (and personally donated or loaned $2,293,966.27). In contrast, in May of 2012 Mitt Romney raised $16,002,050.79 and had $16,999,665.75 in cash on hand, not counting RNC money or Romney Victory committee cash.

Additionally, Trump's campaign is carrying a lot of debt, in the form of personal loans amounting to $45,703,185.39.

Contrast Trump's situation with his Democratic counterpart. Hillary Clinton's campaign raised $26,285,740.90 in May (not counting $102,860.92 from the candidate), and has $42,461,785.99 on hand.

Another comparison. Oklahoma Congressman Tom Cole has $1,697,875.84 in cash on hand. That's $408,368.08 more than THE REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE HAS.

Really, it's not that hard. Donald Trump is the presumptive nominee of one of the two major political parties in the nation. By all measures he's a very wealthy businessman with lots of connections. Raising money should not be this difficult.

Way to go, Republican voters. Not only does Trump have to overcome a major self-created polling deficit, but he has to overcome a massive self-created money deficit. Say hello to President Hillary Clinton. It's almost as it he's doing this for a friend...