Democrat Debate Lowlights + More – Daily Digest

Posted on Wed 10/14/2015 by


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“Here comes the orator! With his flood of words, and his drop of reason.” —Benjamin Franklin, 1735


Democrat Debate Lowlights

By Nate Jackson

Maybe it was chivalry, but last night we witnessed four men refuse to hit a woman. The first Democrat presidential debate — all too appropriately held in “Sin City” — featured frontrunner Hillary Clinton outpacing her four male challengers by a wide margin, and re-establishing her claim to “inevitability” status.

In truth, only Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders can even be considered a “challenger,” and even he will fade. Former Virginia Sen. Jim Webb, former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley and former Republican Lincoln Chaffee are mere props. Webb spent his time complaining about not having more time, while Chaffee’s most memorable moment was griping that a question about one of his earliest votes in the Senate was unfair. Thanks to CNN’s rules, Clinton and Sanders far outpaced the other candidates in air time in part because they scrupulously avoided naming Webb, O’Malley or Chaffee so as to eliminate the latter’s rebuttal opportunities.

So we’ll also focus our attention on Clinton and Sanders, after one other brief note: CNN’s Anderson Cooper is listed as a “notable past member” of the Clinton Global Initiative. And he promised before the debate that he would give these “serious people” a chance to “talk about the issues” — almost surely an effort to protect Clinton from attack.

Class warfare and economy

Clinton: “I have been very consistent over the course of my entire life. … Take the [Trans-Pacific Partnership] trade deal. I did say, when I was secretary of state, three years ago, that I hoped it would be the gold standard. It was just finally negotiated last week, and, in looking at it, it didn’t meet my standards.”

Actually, she said the TPP “sets the gold standard in trade agreements,” not that she hoped it would. And she publicly lobbied for it often.

Clinton: “I never took a position on Keystone until I took a position on Keystone.”

Boy, there’s a great reason to trust her after yet another flip-flop.

Sanders: “I think most Americans understand that our country today faces a series of unprecedented crises. The middle class of this country for the last 40 years has been disappearing. … What this campaign is about is whether we can mobilize our people to take back our government from a handful of billionaires and create the vibrant democracy we know we can and should have.”

What a ringing endorsement of the Obama “recovery,” along with some good class envy red meat.

Clinton: “Bill and I have been very blessed. Neither of us came from wealthy families and we’ve worked really hard our entire lives. And I want to make sure every single person in this country has the same opportunities that he and I have had, to make the most of their God-given potential and to have the chances that they should have in America for a good education, good job training and then good jobs.”

Not only is that a long way from her lament last year about being “dead broke” upon leaving the White House, but if she considers making $300,000 speeches “hard work” she’s really not connecting with working Americans.

Sanders: “[W]hat democratic socialism is about is saying that it is immoral and wrong that the top one-tenth of 1% in this country … own almost as much wealth as the bottom 90%. … That when you look around the world, you see every other major country providing health care to all people as a right, except the United States. … I think we should look to countries like Denmark, like Sweden and Norway, and learn from what they have accomplished for their working people.”

National Review’s Kevin Williamson notes, “For those of you who are keeping score, the Heritage Foundation, which literally keeps score, rates Denmark’s economy as slightly more free — slightly more capitalistic — than that of the United States. … What Denmark does have — what all the Nordic countries have — is relatively high taxes on the middle class, which gets double-whammied with income taxes and a value-added tax.” Perhaps Sanders would like to make the case for that.

Sanders: “Do I consider myself part of the casino capitalist process by which so few have so much and so many have so little, by which Wall Street’s greed and recklessness wrecked this economy? No, I don’t. I believe in a society where all people do well. Not just a handful of billionaires.”

Again, the only way to make socialism’s equal misery even remotely attractive is to couch it in populist envy as Sanders does.


Clinton: “We have to look at the fact that we lose 90 people a day from gun violence. This has gone on too long and it’s time the entire country stood up against the NRA.”

Her gun control plan would do nothing to save lives, but that doesn’t stop her from demonizing the NRA — whose members aren’t the ones out killing people or advocating for doing so.

Sanders: “I come from a rural state. And the views on gun control in rural states are different than in urban states, whether we like it or not.”

He’s correct, though he also loves to boast of his D- rating from the NRA.

Foreign policy, Benghazi and Clinton’s emails

Clinton: “[The Benghazi] committee is basically an arm of the Republican National Committee. It is a partisan vehicle, as admitted by the House Republican majority leader, Mr. McCarthy, to drive down my poll numbers. Big surprise. And that’s what they have attempted to do. … I’ve been as transparent as I know to be.”

It’s true McCarthy’s blunder worked to Clinton’s advantage, but her role in the Benghazi scandal is undeniable and the committee is doing solid work getting to the bottom of it.

Sanders: “The American people are sick and tired of hearing about your damn emails. … Enough of the emails. Let’s talk about the real issues.”

It works to Sanders’ advantage with his own constituency to downplay Clinton’s email scandal, and it also undercut any possible criticism coming from other candidates on stage last night. Chafee came closest, saying of Clinton, “We need someone that has the best in ethical standards as our next president.”

Not surprisingly, the debate didn’t tell us anything we didn’t already know. Democrats support income redistribution in the name of “social justice,” they oppose the Second Amendment and they (particularly the Clintons) lie for personal gain. And the party is scared enough of Hillary to avoid any serious challenge to her terrible candidacy.


Planned Parenthood’s ‘Fix’? Making Fetal Harvesting ‘Free’

It’s hard to consider this good news when the core issue remains the same. On Tuesday, Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards informed National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins that her organization is amending, albeit diminutively, its controversial fetal harvesting program. Unfortunately, the practice itself remains intact. We wish the same could be said of the victims. In a letter to Collins, Richards attacked the Center for Medical Progress and other “extremists” for allegedly smearing Planned Parenthood in a backdoor effort “to ban abortion in the U.S. and block women from getting any health care from Planned Parenthood.” She explained, “In order to completely debunk the disingenuous argument that our opponents have been using — and to reveal the true political purpose of these attacks — our Federation has decided, going forward, that any Planned Parenthood health center that is involved in donating tissue after an abortion for medical research will follow the model already in place at one of our two affiliates currently facilitating donations for fetal tissue research. That affiliate accepts no reimbursement for its reasonable expenses — even though reimbursement is fully permitted under the 1993 law.”

In other words, Planned Parenthood didn’t really change anything, except to make fetal harvesting “free” for prospective buyers. The said videos show Planned Parenthood representatives openly discussing profits — the main point of contention — and even ways to spend that money, like on a Lamborghini. Sounds to us like Richards’ decision is a concession of wrongdoing. Moreover, the organization may have just opened a can of worms. As Twitchy observes, “There’s an unasked question in all this reporting: if Planned Parenthood no longer receives reimbursement for its baby parts business, who pays? There are still costs involved. They think this solves the problem, but what it does is raise additional questions that the overhead associated with the fetal tissue donations will be paid for with taxpayer money.” In the letter, Richards contends, “Our decision is first and foremost about preserving the ability of our patients to donate tissue, and to expose our opponents’ false charges about this limited but important work.” The only thing being exposed is just how rotten this organization is.

Ending Life Is Great; Saving It, Not So Much

Just days after signing assisted suicide into law in California, Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed “Right to Try” legislation. In other words, he told his citizens to drop dead. Right to Try is the idea that terminally ill patients should be able to access medicines that are certified as safe but have not yet survived the gauntlet of approval from the bureaucrats at the Food and Drug Administration. So if you are terminally ill and suffering in California, the governor thinks it’s a great idea for you to commit suicide with the help of your doctor. If, however, you wish to try all avenues to avoid suffering and extend your life, well, tough luck. Brown argued that the FDA already has a compassionate use program to meet this need, but it’s cumbersome to apply and very few people benefit from it. Brown’s seemingly clear preference for suicide here is not terribly compatible with Catholic teaching — a faith he loves to cite when it suits him. But California’s legislature passed the bill by large enough margins to override a veto, so we’ll see what happens.

On a final note, health care economics are going to play an increasing role in end-of-life decisions, and that may explain Brown’s move. Specifically, The Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto observes, “What accounts for that inconsistency? Here’s one factor that may play a role: California is on the hook for millions of state employees’ and retirees’ generous medical benefits. When one of them receives a terminal diagnosis, it’s a lot cheaper to hasten his death than to attempt to prolong his life.”

Clinton ‘Transparent’ With Name of CIA Source

During last night’s Democrat presidential debate, Hillary Clinton said of her emails, “I’ve been as transparent as I know to be.” She’s got that right. Her emails were so unsecure and transparent that security experts said a low-skilled hacker could have defeated her security measures. The server was set up so that Clinton could access its information remotely, which opened the server to prying eyes. She used software notorious for vulnerabilities and she did not use a method of communicating with the server that protected against eavesdropping. Hey, didn’t Clinton say she set up the server for “convenience”?

We know at least one hacker accessed the server, although he or she didn’t know just what they stumbled into at the time If they did, the hacker would have discovered some of the most hallowed information the U.S. government protects. On March 18, 2011, Clinton forwarded an email to her aides containing the name of a member of the CIA working in Libya. “Even inside CIA, in internal emails or cables, or even conversations you never mention, you never talk about the true name of a human source,” said CIA veteran John Rizzo. “You use a pseudonym. I mean, honestly, it was quite stunning.” Rizzo continued, “If this is a foreign-based source, living in Libya let’s say … you get outed as a CIA source over there, you’re a dead man. So it couldn’t be more serious.”

Meanwhile, Barack Obama backtracked on his recent comments dismissing security concerns over Clinton’s server. Now that he’s read the news, he’s not so sure it doesn’t pose a threat to national security as he alleged Sunday. Imagine that: The sitting president didn’t recognize a security threat who sat in his own cabinet.



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Ed Feulner: “Not many people make a habit of carrying large amounts of cash around. After all, thieves could steal it. How ironic, then, that a growing threat to your money is the people you’d call if your money was stolen: the police. And all because of a little-known law-enforcement tool known as civil forfeiture. It allows police departments to keep the proceeds from whatever property they seize in the course of conducting an investigation or making an arrest. You might think this means the police are simply taking huge wads of cash off drug dealers who merit little sympathy. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work like that. Many victims of forfeiture abuse are not criminals at all, but ordinary people who happen to be carrying a large amount of cash at the wrong time and place. … Civil forfeiture has its place, but reform is long overdue (beyond the progress made by several states). … Innocent citizens should never be deprived unjustly of their property. It’s time to stop civil-forfeiture abuse.”


Insight: “The American Republic will endure, until politicians realize they can bribe the people with their own money.” —Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859)

Upright: “If you watched that debate last night it looked like something from the early ‘80s. It was basically a liberal vs. liberal debate about who was going to give away the most free stuff.” —Marco Rubio

Good questions: “Will you say anything to get elected? … Do you change your political identity based on who you’re talking to?” —Anderson Cooper to Hillary Clinton

“[W]hat really stands out about the Democratic debate is how there was no diversity of idea or diversity of ethnicity. It was a bunch of old white people on stage who all largely agreed on government policies, government spending, taking people’s guns away, and killing children. Contrast these Democrats with the Republicans running. The Republicans disagree on immigration, they disagree on taxes, they disagree on college funding, they are white, Hispanic, Indian, male, and female. Where there is diversity of skin and thought on the right, there is none on the left.” —Erick Erickson

“The fact that the biggest national security news out of the debate [last night] was Bernie Sanders emphasizing that he is not, in fact, against all military action, under all circumstances, at all times, tells you about all you need to know about the national security policy of the Democratic Party. These candidates are much more comfortable in discussing their dismay over the 2008 financial crisis, or the 2003 invasion of Iraq, or, in Sander’s case, their opposition to the war in Vietnam than they are in speaking frankly about the foreign policy legacy of the Obama administration.” —Aaron MacLean

“Having Bernie Sanders play Clinton’s chief foil may excite the left, but, as much as I hate to say it, David Brock is right: The man is unelectable. It’s not just that he’s proposing $18 trillion in new spending and trillions in new taxes. It’s his personal demeanor, which will turn off most Democrats long before it turns off swing voters in the general election.” —Matthew Continetti

“[Y]es, the candidates sounded like hard-Left, pie-in-the-sky, free-ice-cream-for-everyone, Socialist pander bears. But they do so because that is what the Democratic Party’s primary voters demand. Don’t blame them; blame the party rank-and-file that craves these promises, rhetoric, and worldview.” —Jim Geraghty

And last… “Socialism is the idea that violent force is an appropriate response to peaceful, voluntary exchange.” —Frank Fleming

Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis!
Managing Editor Nate Jackson

Join us in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families.

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