Friday, April 29, 2016

Friday Reads

GOP presidential candidate Ted Cruz received a couple of ringing endorsements:

Indiana Governor Mike Pence endorsed him, which should help his chances in the upcoming Hoosier State primary.

Former House speaker John Boehner offered his support of Cruz by recalling he was a "miserable son of a bitch."


Obituary: Former GOP Montana senator Conrad Burns has died. He was 81:

The three-term senator won his seat in 1988 in a close election, but he was re-elected in a landslide in 1994, the first Republican U.S. senator to be re-elected in Montana. Burns used his influence on the U.S. Senate's Appropriations Committee to bolster domestic energy production and manage public lands in the country's Western region.

Burns lost re-election in 2006 after he was linked to the lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who was convicted of fraud and served time in prison. Burns was never charged with any crime, however. He later became a lobbyist himself.

John Kasich Town Hall Medford, Oregon

GOP presidential candidate Governor John Kasich of Ohio arrived on time in Medford, Oregon, last night for a town hall meeting with perhaps 200 people or so, including yours truly.

All of the questions focused on domestic issues, especially student loan debt, "welfare" programs, and the economy in general.

This area of Oregon is very "red," and of course the obligatory self-righteous bitching about food stamps by somebody in the audience got asked. This in an area of the country where it is very difficult for people to find full-time work thanks to a still largely agricultural-based economy.

Kasich answered that question noting he didn't believe people should be thrown out into the streets and be cut off without some alternatives. He walked about policies about working for benefits and that sort of thing. He turned to where I was sitting, and I just happened to pop off with the fact that most people on SNAP benefits are working poor. He agreed with me, of course, but I am sure the poor people haters were not happy with a shot of truth.

Other than that, I kept my mouth shut. After it was over, of course almost everybody left, and I got to shake his hand at the meet and greet before he had to take off to California. Kasich is of average height and build. I didn't bring a piece of paper with me and a Sharpie for him to sign autographs because he did do that.

Kasich emphasized the positive, which made this group quite pleased. There were few or no Trump supporters in the crowd.

Some photos. Note the picture of the "debt clock." Kasich takes this everywhere on the campaign trail. You will recall he was big on cutting the deficit when he was in Congress: