Donald Trump is a Libertarian-Leaning Conservative and Ted Cruz is Hard Core Conservative — Trump/Cruz Ticket? — Conservatives Intellectuals Need To Focus on Results Not Words — The Republican Party Is Not A Conservative Party — Conservatives and Libertarians Voters Have Been Abandoning Both The Democratic and Republican Parties Who Are Bought and Paid For By The Donor Base — The Tyranny of Two Party System — Corrupt Big Government Parties — The Decline and Fall of American Republic — Remembering 9/11 — Videos

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Project_1

The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 531: September 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 530: September 10, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 529: September 9, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 528: September 8, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 527: September 4, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 526: September 3, 2015  

Pronk Pops Show 525: September 2, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 524: August 31, 2015  

Pronk Pops Show 523: August 27, 2015  

Pronk Pops Show 522: August 26, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 521: August 25, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 520: August 24, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 519: August 21, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 518: August 20, 2015  

Pronk Pops Show 517: August 19, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 516: August 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 515: August 17, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 514: August 14, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 513: August 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 512: August 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 511: August 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 510: August 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 509: July 24, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 508: July 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 507: July 17, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 506: July 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 505: July 15, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 504: July 14, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 503: July 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 502: July 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 501: July 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 500: July 8, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 499: July 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 498: July 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 497: July 1, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 496: June 30, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 495: June 29, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 494: June 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 493: June 25, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 492: June 24, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 491: June 23, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 490: June 22, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 489: June 19, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 488: June 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 487: June 17, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 486; June 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 485: June 15, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 484: June 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 483: June 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 482; June 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 481: June 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 480: June 8, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 479: June 5, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 478: June 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 477: June 3, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 476: June 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 475: June 1, 2015

 Story 1: Donald Trump is a Libertarian-Leaning Conservative and Ted Cruz is Hard Core Conservative — Trump/Cruz Ticket? — Conservatives Intellectuals Need To Focus on Results Not Words — The Republican Party Is Not A Conservative Party — Conservatives and Libertarians Voters Have Been Abandoning Both The Democratic and Republican Parties Who Are Bought and Paid For By The Donor Base — The Tyranny of Two Party System — Corrupt Big Government Parties — The Decline and Fall of American Republic — Remembering 9/11 — Videos

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Liberal Party: 10 Reasons You Might Be A Liberal – Learn Liberty

Libertarianism: An Introduction

Murray Rothbard: Six Stages of the Libertarian Movement

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TAKE IT TO THE LIMITS: Milton Friedman on Libertarianism

Jon Stewart’s 19 Tough Questions for Libertarians!

Capitalism Needs Regulation – Why Max Keiser is Correct and Libertarians are Mistaken!

Liberals and Conservatives Will Never Agree – A Conversation with William Gairdner

The History of Classical Liberalism

The Decline and Triumph of Classical Liberalism (Pt. 1) | Learn Liberty

The Decline and Triumph of Classical Liberalism (Pt. 2) | Learn Liberty

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Dennis Prager’s Top 10 Ways Liberalism Makes America Worse

tube.com/watch?v=Uj9qvBwOeMA]

Conservative Review

State Name Party Score Years in DC Next Election Track State Name Party Score Years in DC Next Election Track

Conservatives and Libertarians

(A-C)

UTSen. Mike Lee R A 100% 4 2016

TXSen. Ted Cruz R A 96% 2 2018

KYSen. Rand Paul R A 93% 4 2016

SCSen. Tim Scott R B 85% 4 2016

NESen. Benjamin Sasse R B 80% 0 2020

GASen. David Perdue R B 80% 0 2020

ALSen. Jeff Sessions R B 80% 18 2020

FLSen. Marco Rubio R B 80% 4 2016

IDSen. Jim Risch R C 78% 6 2020

OKSen. Jim Inhofe R C 77% 28 2020

IDSen. Michael Crapo R C 76% 22 2016

IASen. Charles Grassley R C 72% 40 2016

LASen. David Vitter R C 71% 16 2016


Moderates and Progressives

(D-F)

WISen. Ron Johnson R D 67% 4 2016

ALSen. Richard Shelby R D 66% 36 2016

WYSen. Michael Enzi R D 64% 18 2020

PASen. Pat Toomey R D 63% 10 2016

KSSen. Jerry Moran R D 62% 18 2016

WYSen. John Barrasso R D 61% 8 2018

LASen. Bill Cassidy R D 60% 6 2020

AKSen. Dan Sullivan R D 60% 0 2020

OKSen. James Lankford R D 60% 4 2016

IASen. Joni Ernst R D 60% 0 2020

MTSen. Steve Daines R D 60% 2 2020

ARSen. Tom Cotton R D 60% 2 2020

TXSen. John Cornyn R F 59% 13 2020

NESen. Deb Fischer R F 56% 2 2018

KSSen. Pat Roberts R F 55% 34 2020

OHSen. Rob Portman R F 54% 16 2016

NVSen. Dean Heller R F 52% 8 2018

SDSen. John Thune R F 52% 16 2016

KYSen. Mitch McConnell R F 52% 30 2020

UTSen. Orrin Hatch R F 52% 38 2018

TNSen. Bob Corker R F 51% 8 2018

ARSen. John Boozman R F 50% 14 2016

NCSen. Richard Burr R F 49% 20 2016

INSen. Daniel Coats R F 48% 22 2016

SCSen. Lindsey Graham R F 47% 20 2020

AZSen. John McCain R F 43% 32 2016

NHSen. Kelly Ayotte R F 41% 4 2016

GASen. Johnny Isakson R F 40% 16 2016

NCSen. Thom Tillis R F 40% 0 2020

AZSen. Jeff Flake R F 38% 14 2018

MOSen. Roy Blunt R F 38% 18 2016

MSSen. Thad Cochran R F 33% 41 2020

MSSen. Roger Wicker R F 30% 19 2018

ILSen. Mark Kirk R F 28% 14 2016

NDSen. John Hoeven R F 26% 4 2016

TNSen. Lamar Alexander R F 24% 12 2020

COSen. Cory Gardner R F 20% 4 2020

AKSen. Lisa Murkowski R F 20% 12 2016

SDSen. Mike Rounds R F 20% 0 2020

WVSen. Shelley Capito R F 20% 14 2020

MESen. Susan Collins R F 16% 18 2020 –

https://www.conservativereview.com/scorecard#sthash.9HLKmHG5.dpuf

State Name Score Years in DC Next Election Track
State Name Score Years in DC Next Election Track
VA-7 Rep. David Brat A 100% 0 2016
AL-6 Rep. Gary Palmer A 100% 0 2016
OK-1 Rep. Jim Bridenstine A 96% 2 2016
NC-11 Rep. Mark Meadows A 96% 2 2016
SC-3 Rep. Jeff Duncan A 95% 4 2016
MI-3 Rep. Justin Amash A 95% 4 2016
ID-1 Rep. Raul Labrador A 95% 4 2016
TX-1 Rep. Louie Gohmert A 94% 10 2016
SC-5 Rep. Mick Mulvaney A 93% 4 2016
AZ-6 Rep. David Schweikert A 92% 4 2016
OH-4 Rep. Jim Jordan A 92% 8 2016
KY-4 Rep. Thomas Massie A 92% 2 2016
FL-19 Rep. Curt Clawson A 90% 1 2016
KS-1 Rep. Tim Huelskamp A 90% 4 2016
CA-4 Rep. Tom McClintock A 90% 6 2016
NJ-5 Rep. Scott Garrett B 88% 12 2016
AZ-8 Rep. Trent Franks B 88% 12 2016
AZ-5 Rep. Matt Salmon B 87% 8 2016
FL-6 Rep. Ron DeSantis B 87% 2 2016
CO-4 Rep. Ken Buck B 86% 0 2016
SC-1 Rep. Mark Sanford B 86% 8 2016
IA-1 Rep. Rod Blum B 86% 0 2016
SC-4 Rep. Trey Gowdy B 85% 4 2016
TN-2 Rep. John Duncan Jr. B 84% 26 2016
CO-5 Rep. Doug Lamborn B 83% 8 2016
TX-14 Rep. Randy Weber B 83% 2 2016
WI-5 Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner B 82% 36 2016
LA-4 Rep. John Fleming B 82% 6 2016
IN-3 Rep. Marlin Stutzman B 81% 4 2016
TN-4 Rep. Scott DesJarlais B 81% 4 2016
CA-48 Rep. Dana Rohrabacher B 80% 26 2016
UT-3 Rep. Jason Chaffetz B 80% 6 2016
AL-5 Rep. Mo Brooks B 80% 4 2016
AZ-4 Rep. Paul Gosar B 80% 4 2016
TX-19 Rep. Randy Neugebauer B 80% 12 2016
OH-1 Rep. Steven Chabot B 80% 18 2016
TX-24 Rep. Kenny Marchant C 79% 10 2016
TX-26 Rep. Michael Burgess C 79% 12 2016
MD-1 Rep. Andy Harris C 78% 4 2016
GA-8 Rep. Austin Scott C 78% 4 2016
FL-8 Rep. Bill Posey C 78% 6 2016
WY-0 Rep. Cynthia Lummis C 78% 6 2016
GA-3 Rep. Lynn Westmoreland C 78% 10 2016
KS-4 Rep. Mike Pompeo C 78% 4 2016
TX-25 Rep. Roger Williams C 77% 2 2016
IA-4 Rep. Steve King C 77% 12 2016
GA-14 Rep. Tom Graves C 77% 5 2016
TX-3 Rep. Sam Johnson C 76% 24 2016
LA-1 Rep. Steve Scalise C 74% 7 2016
TX-2 Rep. Ted Poe C 74% 10 2016
IL-14 Rep. Randy Hultgren C 73% 4 2016
FL-11 Rep. Richard Nugent C 73% 4 2016
WV-2 Rep. Alex Mooney C 71% 0 2016
GA-11 Rep. Barry Loudermilk C 71% 0 2016
MI-2 Rep. Bill Huizenga C 71% 4 2016
FL-15 Rep. Dennis Ross C 71% 4 2016
WV-3 Rep. Evan Jenkins C 71% 0 2016
TX-5 Rep. Jeb Hensarling C 71% 12 2016
FL-1 Rep. Jeff Miller C 71% 13 2016
SC-2 Rep. Joe Wilson C 71% 13 2016
TX-4 Rep. John Ratcliffe C 71% 0 2016
NY-1 Rep. Lee Zeldin C 71% 0 2016
NM-2 Rep. Steve Pearce C 71% 10 2016
TN-7 Rep. Marsha Blackburn C 70% 12 2016
UT-1 Rep. Rob Bishop C 70% 12 2016
PA-4 Rep. Scott Perry C 70% 2 2016
FL-3 Rep. Ted Yoho C 70% 2 2016
GA-6 Rep. Tom Price C 70% 10 2016
NC-3 Rep. Walter Jones C 70% 20 2016
TX-6 Rep. Joe Barton D 69% 30 2016
TN-3 Rep. Chuck Fleischmann D 68% 4 2016
WI-8 Rep. Reid Ribble D 68% 4 2016
VA-5 Rep. Robert Hurt D 68% 4 2016
CA-50 Rep. Duncan Hunter D 67% 6 2016
NH-1 Rep. Frank Guinta D 67% 2 2016
TN-8 Rep. Stephen Fincher D 67% 4 2016
TX-17 Rep. Bill Flores D 66% 4 2016
TN-6 Rep. Diane Black D 66% 4 2016
VA-9 Rep. Morgan Griffith D 66% 4 2016
VA-6 Rep. Robert Goodlatte D 66% 22 2016
NC-5 Rep. Virginia Foxx D 66% 10 2016
MO-7 Rep. Billy Long D 65% 4 2016
GA-9 Rep. Doug Collins D 65% 2 2016
CA-1 Rep. Doug LaMalfa D 65% 2 2016
NC-13 Rep. George Holding D 65% 2 2016
OK-2 Rep. Markwayne Mullin D 65% 2 2016
AL-1 Rep. Bradley Byrne D 64% 1 2016
CA-39 Rep. Ed Royce D 64% 22 2016
CO-6 Rep. Mike Coffman D 64% 6 2016
TX-22 Rep. Pete Olson D 64% 6 2016
OH-5 Rep. Robert Latta D 64% 7 2016
TX-27 Rep. Blake Farenthold D 63% 4 2016
FL-10 Rep. Daniel Webster D 63% 4 2016
KS-3 Rep. Kevin Yoder D 63% 4 2016
NC-10 Rep. Patrick McHenry D 63% 10 2016
TX-32 Rep. Pete Sessions D 63% 18 2016
GA-7 Rep. Rob Woodall D 63% 4 2016
MI-7 Rep. Tim Walberg D 63% 6 2016
TX-8 Rep. Kevin Brady D 62% 18 2016
IN-4 Rep. Todd Rokita D 62% 4 2016
FL-17 Rep. Tom Rooney D 62% 6 2016
OH-2 Rep. Brad Wenstrup D 61% 2 2016
UT-2 Rep. Chris Stewart D 61% 2 2016
TX-7 Rep. John Culberson D 61% 14 2016
PA-12 Rep. Keith Rothfus D 61% 2 2016
TX-10 Rep. Michael McCaul D 61% 10 2016
SC-7 Rep. Tom Rice D 61% 2 2016
MO-8 Rep. Jason Smith D 60% 2 2016
FL-7 Rep. John Mica D 60% 22 2016
KS-2 Rep. Lynn Jenkins D 60% 6 2016
TX-13 Rep. Mac Thornberry D 60% 20 2016
VA-4 Rep. Randy Forbes D 60% 14 2016
CO-3 Rep. Scott Tipton D 60% 4 2016
NE-3 Rep. Adrian Smith F 58% 8 2016
TX-21 Rep. Lamar Smith F 58% 28 2016
WI-1 Rep. Paul Ryan F 58% 16 2016
VA-1 Rep. Robert Wittman F 58% 7 2016
NC-6 Rep. Mark Walker F 57% 0 2016
TX-36 Rep. Brian Babin F 57% 0 2016
AR-4 Rep. Bruce Westerman F 57% 0 2016
GA-1 Rep. Buddy Carter F 57% 0 2016
CA-49 Rep. Darrell Issa F 57% 14 2016
NC-7 Rep. David Rouzer F 57% 0 2016
IA-3 Rep. David Young F 57% 0 2016
AR-2 Rep. French Hill F 57% 0 2016
LA-6 Rep. Garret Graves F 57% 0 2016
WI-6 Rep. Glenn Grothman F 57% 0 2016
GA-10 Rep. Jody Hice F 57% 0 2016
UT-4 Rep. Mia Love F 57% 0 2016
LA-5 Rep. Ralph Abraham F 57% 0 2016
NC-8 Rep. Richard Hudson F 57% 2 2016
GA-12 Rep. Rick Allen F 57% 0 2016
OK-5 Rep. Steve Russell F 57% 0 2016
NJ-3 Rep. Tom MacArthur F 57% 0 2016
OH-6 Rep. Bill Johnson F 56% 4 2016
PA-16 Rep. Joe Pitts F 56% 18 2016
IL-6 Rep. Peter Roskam F 56% 8 2016
TN-1 Rep. Phil Roe F 56% 6 2016
LA-3 Rep. Charles Boustany Jr. F 55% 10 2016
TX-31 Rep. John Carter F 55% 12 2016
TX-11 Rep. Mike Conaway F 55% 10 2016
MN-3 Rep. Erik Paulsen F 54% 6 2016
OH-16 Rep. Jim Renacci F 54% 4 2016
MO-6 Rep. Sam Graves F 54% 14 2016
IN-9 Rep. Todd Young F 54% 4 2016
MO-4 Rep. Vicky Hartzler F 54% 4 2016
AL-4 Rep. Robert Aderholt F 53% 18 2016
MI-10 Rep. Candice Miller F 52% 12 2016
CA-22 Rep. Devin Nunes F 52% 12 2016
FL-12 Rep. Gus Bilirakis F 52% 8 2016
AL-3 Rep. Mike Rogers F 52% 12 2016
CA-8 Rep. Paul Cook F 52% 2 2016
NC-2 Rep. Renee Ellmers F 52% 4 2016
IN-8 Rep. Larry Bucshon F 51% 4 2016
OH-7 Rep. Bob Gibbs F 50% 4 2016
MN-2 Rep. John Kline F 50% 12 2016
AR-1 Rep. Rick Crawford F 50% 4 2016
WI-7 Rep. Sean Duffy F 50% 4 2016
NY-23 Rep. Tom Reed F 50% 4 2016
KY-2 Rep. Brett Guthrie F 49% 6 2016
WA-5 Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers F 49% 10 2016
MI-1 Rep. Dan Benishek F 49% 4 2016
TX-12 Rep. Kay Granger F 49% 18 2016
VA-2 Rep. Scott Rigell F 49% 4 2016
MS-4 Rep. Steven Palazzo F 49% 4 2016
FL-16 Rep. Vern Buchanan F 49% 8 2016
MO-3 Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer F 48% 6 2016
IN-6 Rep. Luke Messer F 48% 2 2016
AL-2 Rep. Martha Roby F 48% 4 2016
OH-10 Rep. Michael Turner F 48% 12 2016
NC-9 Rep. Robert Pittenger F 48% 2 2016
PA-9 Rep. Bill Shuster F 47% 14 2016
MS-3 Rep. Gregg Harper F 47% 6 2016
WV-1 Rep. David McKinley F 46% 4 2016
OH-12 Rep. Pat Tiberi F 46% 14 2016
OK-4 Rep. Tom Cole F 46% 12 2016
PA-10 Rep. Tom Marino F 46% 4 2016
FL-13 Rep. David Jolly F 45% 1 2016
OK-3 Rep. Frank Lucas F 45% 21 2016
NE-1 Rep. Jeff Fortenberry F 45% 10 2016
CA-23 Rep. Kevin McCarthy F 45% 8 2016
PA-18 Rep. Tim Murphy F 45% 12 2016
NY-19 Rep. Chris Gibson F 44% 4 2016
OR-2 Rep. Greg Walden F 44% 16 2016
SD-0 Rep. Kristi Noem F 44% 4 2016
PA-3 Rep. Mike Kelly F 44% 4 2016
KY-6 Rep. Andy Barr F 43% 2 2016
MO-2 Rep. Ann Wagner F 43% 2 2016
VA-10 Rep. Barbara Comstock F 43% 0 2016
ME-2 Rep. Bruce Poliquin F 43% 0 2016
FL-26 Rep. Carlos Curbelo F 43% 0 2016
NV-4 Rep. Cresent Hardy F 43% 0 2016
WA-4 Rep. Dan Newhouse F 43% 0 2016
OH-14 Rep. Dave Joyce F 43% 2 2016
MI-11 Rep. Dave Trott F 43% 0 2016
KY-1 Rep. Edward Whitfield F 43% 20 2016
NY-21 Rep. Elise Stefanik F 43% 0 2016
IN-2 Rep. Jackie Walorski F 43% 2 2016
NY-24 Rep. John Katko F 43% 0 2016
MI-4 Rep. John Moolenaar F 43% 0 2016
AZ-2 Rep. Martha McSally F 43% 0 2016
MI-8 Rep. Mike Bishop F 43% 0 2016
IL-12 Rep. Mike Bost F 43% 0 2016
CA-45 Rep. Mimi Walters F 43% 0 2016
PA-6 Rep. Ryan Costello F 43% 0 2016
MT-0 Rep. Ryan Zinke F 43% 0 2016
CA-25 Rep. Steve Knight F 43% 0 2016
MN-6 Rep. Tom Emmer F 43% 0 2016
TX-23 Rep. Will Hurd F 43% 0 2016
MI-6 Rep. Fred Upton F 42% 28 2016
NJ-7 Rep. Leonard Lance F 42% 6 2016
PA-5 Rep. Glenn Thompson F 41% 6 2016
WA-3 Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler F 41% 4 2016
ID-2 Rep. Mike Simpson F 41% 16 2016
FL-4 Rep. Ander Crenshaw F 40% 14 2016
KY-5 Rep. Harold Rogers F 40% 34 2016
IL-16 Rep. Adam Kinzinger F 39% 4 2016
NJ-4 Rep. Christopher Smith F 39% 34 2016
AK-0 Rep. Don Young F 39% 42 2016
CA-10 Rep. Jeffrey Denham F 39% 4 2016
IL-15 Rep. John Shimkus F 39% 18 2016
NJ-11 Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen F 39% 20 2016
AR-3 Rep. Steve Womack F 39% 4 2016
PA-11 Rep. Lou Barletta F 38% 4 2016
NV-2 Rep. Mark Amodei F 38% 3 2016
OH-15 Rep. Steve Stivers F 38% 4 2016
NV-3 Rep. Joe Heck F 37% 4 2016
CA-42 Rep. Ken Calvert F 37% 22 2016
PA-8 Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick F 37% 8 2016
IL-10 Rep. Bob Dold F 36% 2 2016
IL-13 Rep. Rodney Davis F 36% 2 2016
NY-27 Rep. Chris Collins F 35% 2 2016
WA-8 Rep. Dave Reichert F 35% 10 2016
OH-8 Rep. John Boehner F 35% 24 2016
ND-0 Rep. Kevin Cramer F 35% 2 2016
NY-2 Rep. Peter King F 35% 22 2016
IN-5 Rep. Susan Brooks F 35% 2 2016
PA-15 Rep. Charlie Dent F 34% 10 2016
NJ-2 Rep. Frank LoBiondo F 34% 20 2016
FL-25 Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart F 32% 12 2016
PA-7 Rep. Pat Meehan F 32% 4 2016
NY-22 Rep. Richard Hanna F 31% 4 2016
FL-27 Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen F 30% 26 2016
CA-21 Rep. David Valadao F 26% 2 2016

– See more at: https://www.conservativereview.com/scorecard#sthash.7BNr4KT7.dpuf

Party Affiliation

Trend: Party affiliation in U.S. plus leaners

NATIONAL REVIEW’S JONAH GOLDBERG: ‘COUNT ME OUT’ OF ANY CONSERVATIVE MOVEMENT WITH DONALD TRUMP

By  BEN SHAPIRO

On Saturday, National Review senior editor Jonah Goldbergpenned a controversial column in which he rejected Donald Trump and his followers from the conservative movement. “Well, if this is the conservative movement now, I guess you’re going to have to count me out,” Goldberg writes.

Goldberg goes on to suggest that the embrace of Trump perverts conservatism itself, broadening the definition of the movement in order to include Trump.

Goldberg, whom I consider a friend and a brilliant commentator, is right to label Trump insufficiently conservative. I have specifically argued that Trump ought not be the nominee thanks to his insufficient conservatism—so has Michelle Malkin, so have numerous other conservative commentators.

But here is the sad truth: Many of the same people appalled by Trump made Trump’s candidacy possible.

Trump is a product of a conservatism-less Republicanism, prepared for and championed by the intellectual elites who told us to ignore Mitt Romney’s creation of Romneycare and

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) 43% ’s campaign finance reform, who told conservatives to shut up and get in line, who explained that conservatives had to throw over Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) 96% and his government shutdowns in favor of
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) 52% and his pathological inability to take a hard stand against President Obama using the tools at his disposal.

Over at National Review, even as Goldberg condemns Trump for his non-conservatism, another columnist simultaneously urges a ticket with Governor “God Told Me To Use Obamacare Money To Expand Medicaid” John Kasich (R-OH) and Sen. Marco “Immigration Gang of Eight” Rubio (R-FL). Goldberg himself championed Romney’s candidacy because he wasn’t a conservative, writing back in 2012:

Even if Romney is a Potemkin conservative (a claim I think has merit but is also exaggerated), there is an instrumental case to be made for him: It is better to have a president who owes you than to have one who claims to own you. A President Romney would be on a very short leash.

Why wouldn’t the same logic apply to Trump?

And while Goldberg today raps Trump on the knuckles for his support of socialized medicine, going so far as to label opposition to such policy a “core tenet of American conservatism from Day One,” Goldberg used Romneycare as a point in favor of Romney in 2012: “He is a man of duty and purpose. He was told to ‘fix’ health care in ways Massachusetts would like… He did it all. The man does his assignments.”

Goldberg today says that Trump doesn’t deserve to be a part of the conservative movement, and his followers have excised themselves from the conservative community. But in 2012, he warned that anyone saying the same of Mitt Romney threatened the possibility of conservative victory. In 2012, Goldberg explicitly opposed purges and purity tests:

That’s certainly reason enough to be mad at the establishment. But replacing the current leadership with even more ardent, passionate and uncompromising conservatives is far from a guaranteed formula for making the Republican Party more popular or powerful. To do that, the GOP needs to persuade voters to become a little more conservative, not to hector already-conservative politicians to become even more pure as they go snipe-hunting for the Rockefeller Republicans.

What requirements did Mitt Romney, and John Kasich, and John McCain, and Mitch McConnell fulfill that Trump does not? Goldberg is right that Trump has “no ideological guardrails whatsoever” when it comes to taxes and “knows less than most halfway-decent DC interns about foreign policy.” Goldberg could have added that Trump has made an enormous amount of money utilizing eminent domain, that he supports affirmative action, and that he opposes free trade, among other pernicious positions. There is a reason that this weekend full-fledged economic idiot Paul Krugman endorsed Trump’s economic policies.

The question is: Why are so many Republicans backing him? There are two answers: first, he’s tough on illegal immigration, the only issue many conservatives believe matters. The second answer is more telling, however: Trump has heavy support because Republicans rejected ideological purity a long time ago. And here’s the irony: Goldberg and others can’t call Tea Partiers to Jesus on Trump because, according to polls, Tea Partiers don’t support Trump in outsized numbers. The reality is that the same people who don’t like ideological litmus tests support Trump. Just a few weeks back, the Washington Post concluded that Trump’s fans “are more moderate than Tea Partiers were,” significantly more likely to call themselves Republicans than Tea Partiers were, far younger and less religious and blue collar than Tea Partiers.

As Sallah from Raiders of the Lost Ark would put it, “Jonah, you’re digging in the wrong place.”

If you want to target Trump supporters for failing to take conservatism seriously, try starting with those who don’t take conservatism seriously. Most of them were trained in the acceptability of “victory before conservatism” Republicanism by the some of the same folks now deriding the poll-leading Trump.

I’ve lived this story before: I’m from California. Trump is Arnold Schwarzenegger without the Austrian accent. He’s a know-nothing with a huge name and a Teflon personality, and people get behind him because he’s a celebrity and because victory matters more than principle. I know that’s so, because I made the same mistake with regard to Schwarzenegger, explicitly endorsing him in spite of his insufficient conservatism on the grounds that voters in California would get used to voting Republican.

That was a failure. Schwarzenegger was terrible, and what followed him was a shift to radical leftism unthinkable in the early days of his candidacy. I learned that lesson, and in January 2012, I said that the conservative embrace of Mitt Romney would pervert the movement itself, in the same way Goldberg now accuses Trump of perverting conservatism:

Yes, defeating horrible politicians like Barack Obama is the top goal — but that doesn’t justify redefining conservatism entirely…. When we deliberately broaden conservatism to encompass government-forced purchase of health insurance or raising taxes or appointing liberal judges or enforcing same-sex marriage or using taxpayer money to bail out business or pushing trade barriers, we destroy conservatism from within. If we do that, why would our politicians even bother to pay lip service to the standard?

Like Goldberg, I fear the same from Trump: I fear that he’ll be a wild card with no governing principle, that even if he were to win, he’d irrevocably split conservatism. But I also recognize that Trump isn’t a departure for Republicans abandoning principle: he’s the political love child of Mitt Romney and Barack Obama, a combination of the non-conservative “victory mentality” and the arrogance of a dictatorial left many conservatives want to see countered with fire.

In sum, I’m happy to welcome establishment Republicans who want to revivify conservative litmus tests to the party. But from now on, let’s be consistent: if we’re going to oust Trump based on his ideology, those requirements can’t be waived for others.

http://www.breitbart.com/big-journalism/2015/09/07/national-reviews-jonah-goldberg-count-me-out-of-any-conservative-movement-with-donald-trump/

The Words Trump Doesn’t Use

by JIM GERAGHTY

Did you ever think you would see the day when the GOP front-runner rarely uttered the words “freedom” and “liberty”? Perhaps some Republicans can be accused of loving liberty and freedom too much — or at least using those words as rhetorical crutches. Donald Trump is not one of them. The current GOP presidential front-runner rarely uses the words “freedom” or “liberty” in his remarks at all.

Trump didn’t use the words “freedom” or “liberty” in his announcement speech. He didn’t use those words in his Nashville speech on August 29, or his Nashville rally on August 21, or his appearance at the Iowa State Fair on August 15, or his rally and news conference in New Hampshire on August 14, or his news conference in Birch Run, Mich., or his press conference in Laredo, Texas, on July 23.

He didn’t use those words while discussing his signing of the Republican National Committee’s pledge last Thursday, or in his contentious interview with Hugh Hewitt the same day.

Trump did use the term “free-market” once during his Meet the Press interview with Chuck Todd, in a defense of his qualified support for affirmative action: “Well, you know, you have to also go free market. You have to go capability. You have to do a lot of things. But I’m fine with affirmative action.” The word “liberty” didn’t even come up.

This is an unusual vocabulary for a Republican front-runner. It wasn’t that long ago that grass-roots conservatives showed up at Tea Party rallies with signs reading, “Liberty: All the Stimulus We Need.” The Tea Party named itself after an event organized by the Sons of Liberty. The GOP platform declares the party was “born in opposition to the denial of liberty.”

Trump’s lexicon is another indicator of the dramatic shift he would represent in moving the Republican party from a libertarian-leaning one to a populist one. During the Obama era, self-identified libertarians have asked whether the Tea Party and the GOP are truly dedicated to liberty and individual rights, or if their real objection to big government is that it’s controlled by Democrats. The embrace of Trump suggests their skepticism was well-founded.

It’s no accident that Trump has been labeled a populist by outlets across the political spectrum, from The American Interest to NPR. His speeches and off-the-cuff remarks make clear that he doesn’t see the world through the lens of free and unfree; he sees it through the lens of strength and weakness: For me, conservatism as it pertains to our country is fiscal. We have to be strong and secure and get rid of our debt. The military has to be powerful and not necessarily used but very powerful. I am on the sort of a little bit social side of conservative when it comes — I want people to be taken care of from a health-care standpoint. But to do that, we have to be strong. I want to save Social Security without cuts. I want a strong country. And to me, conservative means a strong country with very little debt.

The man whose slogan is “Make America Great Again” doesn’t seem particularly worried about a Leviathan state infringing upon its citizens’ liberties. He sees a disordered society whose people are threatened by violent criminals coming across the border, undermined by poor negotiation in foreign-trade and security agreements, and asked by free-riding allies to shoulder way too much of the burden in a dangerous world.

That philosophy is dramatically different from the liberty-focused message Republicans have become accustomed to since the rise of the Tea Party in 2009. And, at least for now, it has made Trump the front-runner by a wide margin.

 http://www.nationalreview.com/article/423819/donald-trump-speeches-no-liberty-freedom?target=author&tid=814

Donald Trump on Abortion
Click here for 7 full quotes on Abortion OR other candidates on Abortion OR background on Abortion.

  • I have evolved on abortion issue, like Reagan evolved. (Aug 2015)
  • Ban late abortions; exceptions for rape, incest or health. (Jun 2015)
  • I am now pro-life; after years of being pro-choice. (Apr 2011)
  • I changed my views to pro-life based on personal stories. (Apr 2011)
  • I am pro-life; fight ObamaCare abortion funding. (Feb 2011)
  • Pro-choice, but ban partial birth abortion. (Jul 2000)
  • Favors abortion rights but respects opposition. (Dec 1999)
Donald Trump on Budget & Economy
Click here for 6 full quotes on Budget & Economy OR other candidates on Budget & Economy OR background on Budget & Economy.

  • If debt reaches $24T, that’s the point of no return. (Jun 2015)
  • Prepare for upcoming crash, bigger than 1929. (Jul 2000)
  • Optimistic about future of Atlantic City. (Jul 1990)
  • Rent control only benefits a privileged minority. (Jul 1987)
  • One-time 14.25% tax on wealth, to erase national debt. (Nov 1999)
  • Predicts 35% boost to economy from eliminating national debt. (Nov 1999)
Donald Trump on Civil Rights
Click here for 5 full quotes on Civil Rights OR other candidates on Civil Rights OR background on Civil Rights.

  • Disinvited from RedState gathering for misogynistic comments. (Aug 2015)
  • Political correctness is country’s problem, not my problem. (Aug 2015)
  • Same-sex marriage is a state issue. (Jun 2015)
  • No gay marriage; no same-sex partner benefits. (Mar 2011)
  • Tolerate diversity; prosecute hate crimes against gays. (Jul 2000)
Donald Trump on Corporations
Click here for 5 full quotes on Corporations OR other candidates on Corporations OR background on Corporations.

  • I’ve used bankruptcy laws to do a great job for my companies. (Aug 2015)
  • 2002: Participated in development boom of Jersey City. (Apr 2012)
  • 0% corporate tax would create millions of jobs. (Dec 2011)
  • Fight crony capitalism with a level playing field. (Dec 2011)
  • Wealthy move assets around globally based on tax incentives. (Apr 2011)
Donald Trump on Crime
Click here for 4 full quotes on Crime OR other candidates on Crime OR background on Crime.

  • Capital punishment isn’t uncivilized; murderers living is. (Jul 2000)
  • Death penalty deters like violent TV leads kids astray. (Jul 2000)
  • Hold judges accountable; don’t reduce sentences. (Jul 2000)
  • For tough anti-crime policies; not criminals’ rights. (Jul 2000)
Donald Trump on Drugs
Click here for 4 full quotes on Drugs OR other candidates on Drugs OR background on Drugs.

  • Legalize drugs and use tax revenue to fund drug education. (Apr 2011)
  • Never drinks, smokes, nor does drugs. (Feb 2011)
  • Fired Miss USA crown winner due to drug over-indulgence. (Dec 2006)
  • Never touched drugs, nor alcohol, tobacco, or coffee. (Jul 2000)
Donald Trump on Education
Click here for 8 full quotes on Education OR other candidates on Education OR background on Education.

  • Common Core is a disaster. (Jun 2015)
  • Cut the Department of Education way, way down. (Jun 2015)
  • Founded Trump University to teach the art of deal-making. (Jun 2015)
  • Opposes Common Core. (Feb 2015)
  • Teach citizenship; stop “dumbing down”. (Jul 2000)
  • End “creative spelling,” “estimating,” & “empowerment”. (Jul 2000)
  • Bring on the competition; tear down the union walls. (Jul 2000)
  • School choice will improve public schools. (Jul 2000)
Donald Trump on Energy & Oil
Click here for 7 full quotes on Energy & Oil OR other candidates on Energy & Oil OR background on Energy & Oil.

  • Climate change is a hoax. (Jun 2015)
  • No Cap-and-Tax: oil is this country’s lifeblood. (Dec 2011)
  • Jobs will slump until our lifeblood–oil–is cheap again. (Dec 2011)
  • Enough natural gas in Marcellus Shale for 110 year supply. (Dec 2011)
  • Libya: No oil, no support; no exceptions. (Dec 2011)
  • It’s incredible how slowly we’re drilling for oil. (Mar 2011)
  • Oil is the lifeblood of all economies. (Apr 2010)
Donald Trump on Environment
Click here for 2 full quotes on Environment OR other candidates on Environment OR background on Environment.

  • Good development enhances the environment. (Jan 2008)
  • FactCheck: Yes, hybrid family vehicles are available in US. ()
Donald Trump on Families & Children
Click here for the full quote on Families & Children OR other candidates on Families & Children OR background on Families & Children.

  • Stress importance of a strong family, & a culture of Life. (Jun 2015)
Donald Trump on Foreign Policy
Click here for 9 full quotes on Foreign Policy OR other candidates on Foreign Policy OR background on Foreign Policy.

  • More sanctions on Iran; more support of Israel. (Jun 2015)
  • China is our enemy; they’re bilking us for billions. (Dec 2011)
  • When you love America, you protect it with no apologies. (Dec 2011)
  • By 2027, tsunami as China overtakes US as largest economy. (Dec 2011)
  • Criticized Buchanan’s view on Hitler as appeasement. (Jul 2000)
  • Post-Cold War: switch from chess player to dealmaker. (Jul 2000)
  • Support Russia, but with strings attached. (Jul 2000)
  • China: lack of human rights prevents consumer development. (Jul 2000)
  • Be tougher on China-we’re too eager to please. (Jul 2000)
Donald Trump on Free Trade
Click here for 11 full quotes on Free Trade OR other candidates on Free Trade OR background on Free Trade.

  • We don’t beat China or Japan or Mexico in trade. (Aug 2015)
  • China and Japan are beating us; I can beat China. (Jun 2015)
  • 35% import tax on Mexican border. (Jun 2015)
  • Stupid people negotiate our trade bills, & trade won’t work. (Jun 2015)
  • 20% tax on all imported goods. (Dec 2011)
  • Fair trade instead of embarrassing deal with South Korea. (Dec 2011)
  • Repatriate jobs that China has been stealing. (Dec 2011)
  • Embrace globalization and international markets. (Jan 2008)
  • Renegotiate tougher & fairer trade agreements. (Jul 2000)
  • President should be nation’s trade representative. (Dec 1999)
  • World views US trade officials as ‘saps’. (Dec 1999)
Donald Trump on Government Reform
Click here for 6 full quotes on Government Reform OR other candidates on Government Reform OR background on Government Reform.

  • I give to politicians; and they give back: that’s broken!. (Aug 2015)
  • Two-term limit on NYC mayor is a terrible idea. (Sep 2010)
  • Government scrutiny is greatest threat to American Dream. (Jul 2000)
  • Ban soft money; but allow unlimited personal contributions. (Jul 2000)
  • Government should do public works & safety & little else. (Jul 2000)
  • Rebuilt Wollman Rink in 4 months; city failed for 6 years. (Jul 1987)
Donald Trump on Gun Control
Click here for 4 full quotes on Gun Control OR other candidates on Gun Control OR background on Gun Control.

  • A very strong person on the Second Amendment. (Jun 2015)
  • I am against gun control. (Feb 2011)
  • Dems and Reps are both wrong on guns. (Jul 2000)
  • For assault weapon ban, waiting period, & background check. (Jul 2000)
Donald Trump on Health Care
Click here for 8 full quotes on Health Care OR other candidates on Health Care OR background on Health Care.

  • The insurance companies have total control over politicians. (Aug 2015)
  • ObamaCare is a catastrophe that must be repealed & replaced. (Jun 2015)
  • Don’t cut Medicare; grow the economy to keep benefits. (Jun 2015)
  • ObamaCare deductibles are so high that it’s useless. (Jun 2015)
  • Save Medicare & Medicaid without cutting them to the bone. (Jan 2015)
  • Kill ObamaCare before it becomes a trillion-ton weight. (Dec 2011)
  • Increase insurance competition across state lines. (Dec 2011)
  • We must have universal health care. (Jul 2000)
Donald Trump on Homeland Security
Click here for 8 full quotes on Homeland Security OR other candidates on Homeland Security OR background on Homeland Security.

  • Our nuclear arsenal doesn’t work; it’s 30 years old. (Jun 2015)
  • Increased Veterans Day parade audience from 100 to 1 million. (Jun 2015)
  • Defeat ISIS and stop Islamic terrorists. (Jan 2015)
  • American interests come first; no apologies. (Dec 2011)
  • All freedoms flow from national security. (Dec 2011)
  • 3% of GNP for military is too low. (Jul 2000)
  • Missile defense is inappropriate; focus on terrorism. (Jul 2000)
  • Prepare for bio-terrorism attack. (Jul 2000)
Donald Trump on Immigration
Click here for 14 full quotes on Immigration OR other candidates on Immigration OR background on Immigration.

  • We need wall on Mexican border, but ok to have a door in it. (Aug 2015)
  • Mexican government is sending criminals across the border. (Aug 2015)
  • OpEd: businesses & Republicans condemn anti-Mexico terms. (Jul 2015)
  • Half of the undocumented residents in America are criminals. (Jun 2015)
  • Mexico & Latin America send us drugs, crime, and rapists. (Jun 2015)
  • Build great wall on southern border; have Mexico pay for it. (Jun 2015)
  • We need strong borders; we need a wall. (Feb 2015)
  • Citizenship for illegal immigrants is a GOP suicide mission. (Mar 2013)
  • 351,000 illegal aliens are in our prisons; costing $1.1B. (Dec 2011)
  • Anchor babies were NEVER the intent of the 14th Amendment. (Dec 2011)
  • Invite foreigners graduating from college to stay in US. (Dec 2011)
  • Triple-layered fence & Predator drones on Mexican border. (Dec 2011)
  • Control borders; even legal immigration should be difficult. (Jul 2000)
  • Limit new immigration; focus on people already here. (Dec 1999)
Donald Trump on Jobs
Click here for 4 full quotes on Jobs OR other candidates on Jobs OR background on Jobs.

  • Real unemployment rate is 20%; don’t believe 5.6%. (Jun 2015)
  • Raising business tax causes businesses to move jobs overseas. (Dec 2011)
  • Unions fight for pay; managers fight for less; consumers win. (Jul 2000)
  • Foreign companies are taking jobs from US. (Dec 1999)
Donald Trump on Principles & Values
Click here for 26 full quotes on Principles & Values OR other candidates on Principles & Values OR background on Principles & Values.

  • I want to win as a Republican, but might run as Independent. (Aug 2015)
  • In NYC almost everyone is Democrat, but I’m Republican. (Aug 2015)
  • Attended military academy & Wharton Business School. (Jun 2015)
  • Stoked Tea Party suspicions about Obama’s legitimacy. (Jan 2012)
  • No more morning in America; we’ll be mourning FOR America. (Dec 2011)
  • 5-point plan to return America to her former greatness. (Dec 2011)
  • USA is the greatest force for freedom world has ever known. (Dec 2011)
  • Bad students (like Obama) shouldn’t go to Harvard. (Apr 2011)
  • One hour to produce my birth certificate; Obama should too. (Feb 2011)
  • If I run & win, our country will be great again. (Feb 2011)
  • Never give up; look at the solution, not the problem. (Jan 2008)
  • To negotiate well, prepare and know as much as possible. (Jan 2008)
  • In the best negotiations, everyone wins. (Jan 2008)
  • Failure is not permanent. (Jan 2008)
  • Tell people you’re successful or they won’t know it. (Mar 2004)
  • Good management requires hiring good people. (Mar 2004)
  • Lessons: stay focused on big picture. (Mar 2004)
  • Surround yourself with people you can trust. (Mar 2004)
  • 3 principles: One term, two-fisted policies, zero excuses. (Jul 2000)
  • Non-politicians are the wave of the future. (Jul 2000)
  • In business & politics, stands for getting things done. (Jul 2000)
  • Burned by press too often to be available any more. (Jul 1990)
  • Rules for surviving the perils of success. (Jul 1990)
  • Separated from Ivana after long less-than-perfect marriage. (Jul 1990)
  • Toughness is equally strength, intelligence, & self-respect. (Jul 1990)
  • Appealing to middle Americans leery of political elite. (Nov 1999)
Donald Trump on Social Security
Click here for 6 full quotes on Social Security OR other candidates on Social Security OR background on Social Security.

  • Cannot change Medicare or Soc.Sec. and still win elections. (Mar 2013)
  • Social Security isn’t an “entitlement”; it’s honoring a deal. (Dec 2011)
  • Disability Racket: $25B in fraudulent disability filings. (Dec 2011)
  • Pay off debt; put $3T interest savings into Trust Fund. (Jul 2000)
  • Let people invest their own retirement funds. (Jul 2000)
  • No government investment of retirement funds. (Jul 2000)
Donald Trump on Tax Reform
Click here for 10 full quotes on Tax Reform OR other candidates on Tax Reform OR background on Tax Reform.

  • One-time 14% tax on wealthy to pay down national debt. (Jun 2015)
  • 4 brackets; 1-5-10-15%; kill death tax & corporate tax. (Dec 2011)
  • Cutting tax rates incentivizes a strong national work ethic. (Dec 2011)
  • Previously supported wealth tax; now supports Bush tax cuts. (Apr 2011)
  • Repeal the inheritance tax to offset one-time wealth tax. (Jul 2000)
  • Simplify tax code; end marriage penalty & other hidden taxes. (Jul 2000)
  • Opposes flat tax; benefits wealthy too much. (Jul 2000)
  • Personally avoids sales tax, but knows many people like it. (Dec 1999)
  • One-time 14.25% tax on wealth, to erase national debt. (Nov 1999)
  • Tax assets over $10 million, paid over 10 years. (Nov 1999)
Donald Trump on Technology
Click here for 3 full quotes on Technology OR other candidates on Technology OR background on Technology.

  • Rebuild our infrastructure on time & on budget. (Jun 2015)
  • Emmy award & Hollywood Walk of Fame for “The Apprentice”. (Jun 2015)
  • China threatens US with cyber warfare & industrial espionage. (Dec 2011)
Donald Trump on War & Peace
Click here for 12 full quotes on War & Peace OR other candidates on War & Peace OR background on War & Peace.

  • Opposed Iraq war in 2004 & predicted Mideast destabilization. (Aug 2015)
  • Disgraceful deal gives Iran a lot & gets nothing for us. (Aug 2015)
  • Boots on the ground to fight ISIS. (Jun 2015)
  • I said “don’t hit Iraq,” because it destabilized Middle East. (Jun 2015)
  • Hit ISIS hard and fast. (Feb 2015)
  • Take $1.5T in oil from Iraq to pay for US victims. (Mar 2013)
  • Iraq should pick up the tab for their own liberation. (Dec 2011)
  • Stop Iran’s nuclear programs by any & all means necessary. (Dec 2011)
  • John McCain’s actions in Vietnam were not “heroic”. (Sep 2000)
  • Use force to stop North Korean nuke development. (Jul 2000)
  • Support Israel, our unsinkable Mideast aircraft carrier. (Jul 2000)
  • No humanitarian intervention; only to direct threats. (Jul 2000)
Donald Trump on Welfare & Poverty
Click here for 4 full quotes on Welfare & Poverty OR other candidates on Welfare & Poverty OR background on Welfare & Poverty.

  • I don’t like firing people; work makes people better. (Dec 2011)
  • Food stamps should be temporary; not a decade on the dole. (Dec 2011)
  • Apply welfare-to-work to 76 other welfare programs. (Dec 2011)
  • Let “saints” help teen moms; restrict public assistance. (Jul 2000)
VoteMatch Responses
(Click here for VoteMatch quiz)
VoteMatch Question & Answer
(Click on question for explanation and background)
Based on these stances:
(Click on topic for excerpt & citation)
Opposes topic 1:
Abortion is a woman’s unrestricted right
(-3 points on Social scale)
Ban late abortions; exceptions for rape, incest or health: Strongly Opposes topic 1
Stress importance of a strong family, & a culture of Life: Opposes topic 1
I am now pro-life; after years of being pro-choice: Strongly Opposes topic 1
I changed my views to pro-life based on personal stories: Opposes topic 1
I am pro-life; fight ObamaCare abortion funding: Opposes topic 1
Pro-choice, but ban partial birth abortion: Favors topic 1
Favors abortion rights but respects opposition: Favors topic 1
Strongly Opposes topic 2:
Legally require hiring women & minorities
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Political correctness is country’s problem, not my problem: Strongly Opposes topic 2
Bad students (like Obama) shouldn’t go to Harvard: Opposes topic 2
Opposes topic 3:
Comfortable with same-sex marriage
(-3 points on Social scale)
Same-sex marriage is a state issue: Opposes topic 3
No gay marriage; no same-sex partner benefits: Strongly Opposes topic 3
Tolerate diversity; prosecute hate crimes against gays: Favors topic 3
Strongly Favors topic 4:
Keep God in the public sphere
(-5 points on Social scale)
Teach citizenship; stop “dumbing down”: Favors topic 4
End “creative spelling,” “estimating,” & “empowerment”: Favors topic 4
Let “saints” help teen moms; restrict public assistance: Strongly Favors topic 4
Opposes topic 5:
Expand ObamaCare
(+2 points on Economic scale)
ObamaCare is a catastrophe that must be repealed & replaced: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Don’t cut Medicare; grow the economy to keep benefits: Favors topic 5
ObamaCare deductibles are so high that it’s useless: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Save Medicare & Medicaid without cutting them to the bone: Favors topic 5
Kill ObamaCare before it becomes a trillion-ton weight: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Increase insurance competition across state lines: Strongly Opposes topic 5
We must have universal health care: Strongly Favors topic 5
Favors topic 6:
Privatize Social Security
(+2 points on Economic scale)
Cannot change Medicare or Soc.Sec. and still win elections: Opposes topic 6
Social Security isn’t an “entitlement”; it’s honoring a deal: Opposes topic 6
Pay off debt; put $3T interest savings into Trust Fund: Opposes topic 6
Let people invest their own retirement funds: Strongly Favors topic 6
No government investment of retirement funds: Strongly Favors topic 6
Strongly Favors topic 7:
Vouchers for school choice
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Common Core is a disaster: Strongly Favors topic 7
Opposes Common Core: Favors topic 7
Bring on the competition; tear down the union walls: Favors topic 7
School choice will improve public schools: Strongly Favors topic 7
Favors topic 8:
EPA regulations are too restrictive
(-3 points on Social scale)
Good development enhances the environment: Favors topic 8
Strongly Favors topic 9:
Stricter punishment reduces crime
(-5 points on Social scale)
Capital punishment isn’t uncivilized; murderers living is: Strongly Favors topic 9
Death penalty deters like violent TV leads kids astray: Favors topic 9
Hold judges accountable; don’t reduce sentences: Favors topic 9
For tough anti-crime policies; not criminals’ rights: Favors topic 9
Favors topic 10:
Absolute right to gun ownership
(+2 points on Economic scale)
A very strong person on the Second Amendment: Strongly Favors topic 10
I am against gun control: Strongly Favors topic 10
Dems and Reps are both wrong on guns: Neutral on topic 10
For assault weapon ban, waiting period, & background check: Opposes topic 10
Favors topic 11:
Higher taxes on the wealthy
(-3 points on Economic scale)
One-time 14% tax on wealthy to pay down national debt: Strongly Favors topic 11
Raising business tax causes businesses to move jobs overseas: Strongly Opposes topic 11
4 brackets; 1-5-10-15%; kill death tax & corporate tax: Strongly Opposes topic 11
Repeal the inheritance tax to offset one-time wealth tax: Opposes topic 11
Simplify tax code; end marriage penalty & other hidden taxes: Opposes topic 11
Opposes flat tax; benefits wealthy too much: Strongly Favors topic 11
Personally avoids sales tax, but knows many people like it: Opposes topic 11
One-time 14.25% tax on wealth, to erase national debt: Strongly Favors topic 11
Predicts 35% boost to economy from eliminating national debt: Favors topic 11
Tax assets over $10 million, paid over 10 years: Strongly Favors topic 11
Strongly Opposes topic 12:
Pathway to citizenship for illegal aliens
(-5 points on Social scale)
Mexico & Latin America send us drugs, crime, and rapists: Strongly Opposes topic 12
We need strong borders; we need a wall: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Citizenship for illegal immigrants is a GOP suicide mission: Strongly Opposes topic 12
351,000 illegal aliens are in our prisons; costing $1.1B: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Anchor babies were NEVER the intent of the 14th Amendment: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Invite foreigners graduating from college to stay in US: Favors topic 12
Triple-layered fence & Predator drones on Mexican border: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Control borders; even legal immigration should be difficult: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Limit new immigration; focus on people already here: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Opposes topic 13:
Support & expand free trade
(-3 points on Economic scale)
35% import tax on Mexican border: Strongly Opposes topic 13
20% tax on all imported goods: Strongly Opposes topic 13
Repatriate jobs that China has been stealing: Opposes topic 13
Embrace globalization and international markets: Strongly Favors topic 13
Renegotiate tougher & fairer trade agreements: Opposes topic 13
President should be nation’s trade representative: Favors topic 13
World views US trade officials as ‘saps’: Opposes topic 13
Foreign companies are taking jobs from US: Strongly Opposes topic 13
Strongly Favors topic 14:
Support American Exceptionalism
(+5 points on Economic scale)
More sanctions on Iran; more support of Israel: Favors topic 14
American interests come first; no apologies: Strongly Favors topic 14
Use force to stop North Korean nuke development: Strongly Favors topic 14
Strongly Favors topic 15:
Expand the military
(-5 points on Social scale)
Our nuclear arsenal doesn’t work; it’s 30 years old: Strongly Favors topic 15
All freedoms flow from national security: Strongly Favors topic 15
3% of GNP for military is too low: Strongly Favors topic 15
No opinion on topic 16:
Make voter registration easier
(0 points on Social scale)
(No votes on which to base response)
Favors topic 17:
Avoid foreign entanglements
(+2 points on Social scale)
Opposed Iraq war in 2004 & predicted Mideast destabilization: Strongly Favors topic 17
I said “don’t hit Iraq,” because it destabilized Middle East: Strongly Favors topic 17
Hit ISIS hard and fast: Strongly Opposes topic 17
Defeat ISIS and stop Islamic terrorists: Opposes topic 17
Take $1.5T in oil from Iraq to pay for US victims: Strongly Opposes topic 17
Iraq should pick up the tab for their own liberation: Strongly Opposes topic 17
Criticized Buchanan’s view on Hitler as appeasement: Favors topic 17
Post-Cold War: switch from chess player to dealmaker: Strongly Favors topic 17
Support Russia, but with strings attached: Favors topic 17
Support Israel, our unsinkable Mideast aircraft carrier: Strongly Favors topic 17
No humanitarian intervention; only to direct threats: Opposes topic 17
Strongly Opposes topic 18:
Prioritize green energy
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Climate change is a hoax: Strongly Opposes topic 18
No Cap-and-Tax: oil is this country’s lifeblood: Strongly Opposes topic 18
It’s incredible how slowly we’re drilling for oil: Strongly Opposes topic 18
No opinion on topic 19:
Marijuana is a gateway drug
(0 points on Social scale)
Legalize drugs and use tax revenue to fund drug education: Strongly Opposes topic 19
Never drinks, smokes, nor does drugs: Favors topic 19
Fired Miss USA crown winner due to drug over-indulgence: Favors topic 19
Strongly Opposes topic 20:
Stimulus better than market-led recovery
(+5 points on Economic scale)
0% corporate tax would create millions of jobs: Strongly Opposes topic 20
Cutting tax rates incentivizes a strong national work ethic: Strongly Opposes topic 20
Previously supported wealth tax; now supports Bush tax cuts: Strongly Opposes topic 20
One-time 14.25% tax on wealth, to erase national debt: Favors topic 20

Donald Trump is a Libertarian-Leaning Conservative.
Click here for explanation of political philosophy.
Click here for VoteMatch quiz.

VoteMatch

Candidate’s Political Philosophy

The below is a way of thinking about the candidate’s political philosophy by dividing the candidate’s VoteMatch answers into “social” and “economic” questions.  It is only a theory – please take it with a grain of salt!Social Questions:  Liberals and libertarians agree in choosing the less-government answers, while conservatives and populists agree in choosing the more-restrictive answers.

Economic Questions:  Conservatives and libertarians agree in choosing the less-government answers, while liberals and populists agree in choosing the more-restrictive answers.

Candidate’s Score

The candidate scored the following on the VoteMatch questions:

Social Score 25%
Economic Score 78%
 Where the Candidate Fits In

Where the candidate’s Social score meets the Economic score on the grid below is the candidate’s political philosophy.  Based on the above score, the candidate is a Libertarian-Leaning Conservative.

Political Map

 
Social ScoreThis measures how much the candidate believes government should intervene in people’s personal lives or on social issues. These issues include health, morality, love, recreation, prayer and other activities that are not measured in dollars.

  • A high score (above 60%) means the candidate believes in tolerance for different people and lifestyles.
  • A low score (below 40%) means the candidate believes that standards of morality & safety should be enforced by government. 

Economic Score

This measures how much the candidate believes government should intervene in people’s economic lives. Economic issues include retirement funding, budget allocations, and taxes. 

  • A high score (above 60%) means the candidate believes in personal responsibility for financial matters, and that free-market competition is better for people than central planning by the government. 
  • A low score (below 40%) means the candidate believes that a good society is best achieved by the government redistributing wealth. The candidate believes that government’s purpose is to decide which programs are good for society, and how much should be spent on each program.

This measures how much the candidate believes government should intervene in people’s economic lives. Economic issues include retirement funding, budget allocations, and taxes. 

How We Score Candidates

How we determine a candidate’s stance on each VoteMatch question:

  • We collect up votes, excerpts from speeches, press releases, and so on, which are related to each question. Each of these are shown on the candidate’s VoteMatch table.
  • We assign an individual score for each item on the list. The scores can be: Strongly Favor, Favor, Neutral/Mixed, Oppose, Strongly Oppose. The scoring terms refer to the text of the question, not whether the candidate strongly opposed a bill, for example.
  • We then average the individual scores, using the numeric scale: Strongly Favor = 2, Favor = 1, Neutral/Mixed = 0, Oppose = -1, Strongly Oppose = -2.
  • If the average is above 1, the overall answer to the question is Strongly Favor.
  • If the average is above 0, the overall answer to the question is Favor.
  • If the average is exactly 0, the overall answer to the question is Neutral.
  • If the average is below 0, the overall answer to the question is Oppose.
  • If the average is below -1, the overall answer to the question is Strongly Oppose.
  • When you do a VoteMatch quiz, your answers are compared to each candidates’ overall answer to come up with a matching percentage.
  • To get the political philosophy of the candidate, we sum up the answers on two scales, the Personal/Social scale and the Economic Scale. Some questions aren’t used in the political philosophy calculations.
  • The VoteMatch table indicates the number of scale points from each answer (any one question can provide from 0 to 10 scale points on one scale or the other).
  • The combination of social/moral scales and economic scales produces a political philosophy description. A more detailed explanation appears below.
Examples

The chart below indicates how four “hard-core” political philosophers would answer the questions. From this example, you can see how the candidate fits in with each philosophy.  The candidate’s answers are on the left.

  • A “hard-core liberal” would answer social questions to minimize government involvement, but would answer economic questions to include government intervention.
  • A “hard-core libertarian” would answer both social and economic questions to minimize government involvement.
  • A “hard-core conservative” would answer social questions to include government intervention, but would answer economic questions to minimize government involvement.
  • A “hard-core populist” would answer both social and economic questions with proposals that include government intervention.

= Strongly Support    = Support    = No Opinion    = Oppose    = Strongly Oppose

Social Issues The candidate Hard-core Liberal Hard-core Libertarian Hard-Core Conservative Hard-Core Populist
Question 1. Abortion is a woman’s unrestricted right
Question 3. Comfortable with same-sex marriage
Question 8. Human needs over animal rights
Question 12. Pathway to citizenship for illegal aliens
Question 17. Stay out of Iran
Question 4. Keep God in the public sphere
Question 9. Stricter punishment reduces crime
Question 15. Expand the military
Question 16. Stricter limits on political campaign funds
Question 19. Never legalize marijuana

= Strongly Support    = Support    = No Opinion    = Oppose    = Strongly Oppose

Economic Issues The Candidate Hard-core Liberal Hard-core Libertarian Hard-Core Conservative Hard-Core Populist
Question 2. Legally require hiring women & minorities
Question 5. Expand ObamaCare
Question 11. Higher taxes on the wealthy
Question 18. Prioritize green energy
Question 20. Stimulus better than market-led recovery
Question 6. Privatize Social Security
Question 7. Vouchers for school choice
Question 10. Absolute right to gun ownership
Question 13. Support and expand Free Trade
Question 14. Maintain US sovereignty from UN
The Candidate Hard-core Liberal Hard-core Libertarian Hard-Core Conservative Hard-Core Populist

= Strongly Support    = Support    = No Opinion    = Oppose    = Strongly Oppose

Final Notes

To ensure balance among political viewpoints, we arranged the wording of the questions so that half the time, the answer involving more government is answered by “support”, and half the time by “oppose.” Hence, each of the “hard core” philosophers would choose “support” for 5 of the Social questions and for 5 of the Economic questions.

Many of these statements cross over the line between social issues and economic issues. And many people might answer what we call a “Social” issue based on economic reasoning. But we have tried to arrange a series of questions which separates the way candidates think about government activities in these two broad scales.

Political Map and some content from Advocates for Self-Government.

Ted Cruz on Abortion
Click here for 7 full quotes on Abortion OR other candidates on Abortion OR background on Abortion.

  • Allow vote to end Planned Parenthood’s funding. (Aug 2015)
  • Prosecute Planned Parenthood for criminal violations. (Aug 2015)
  • Ban taxpayer funding of abortion & partial birth abortion. (Mar 2015)
  • Companies can deny insuring birth control. (Apr 2012)
  • Protect innocent human life with partial-birth ban. (Jul 2011)
  • Opposes public abortion funding. (Oct 2012)
  • Opposes churches providing birth control. (Oct 2012)
Ted Cruz on Budget & Economy
Click here for 11 full quotes on Budget & Economy OR other candidates on Budget & Economy OR background on Budget & Economy.

  • Top 1% under Obama got fat & happy while workers are hurting. (Feb 2015)
  • Lost Generation: Obama agenda hammers young people. (Mar 2014)
  • Balanced budget amendment to stop bankrupting our country. (Mar 2014)
  • Choice is more federal spending, or free markets & liberty. (Aug 2012)
  • FactCheck: Yes, gross federal debt now exceeds GDP. (Aug 2012)
  • Demand a Balanced Budget amendment. (Jul 2010)
  • Limit federal spending growth to per-capita inflation rate. (Jul 2010)
  • Supports a constitutional BBA. (Oct 2012)
  • Supports the Cut-Cap-and-Balance Pledge. (Jan 2012)
  • Endorsed by the Club for Growth, for pro-growth stances. (Aug 2012)
  • Audit the Federal Reserve & its actions on mortgage loans. (Feb 2013)
Ted Cruz on Civil Rights
Click here for 11 full quotes on Civil Rights OR other candidates on Civil Rights OR background on Civil Rights.

  • Pray against a court decision legalizing same-sex marriage. (Apr 2015)
  • Liberals obsessed with mandatory gay marriage in 50 states. (Apr 2015)
  • Zealotry on same-sex marriage leaves out religious liberty. (Apr 2015)
  • Most states can ignore Supreme Court legalizing gay marriage. (Mar 2015)
  • Overturn Supreme Court with anti-gay marriage Amendment. (Oct 2014)
  • Opposes gay pride parades and opposes gay marriage. (Feb 2012)
  • One-man-one-woman marriage is building block of society. (Jul 2011)
  • Disallow Ku Klux Klan from participating in Adopt-A-Highway. (Jul 2011)
  • Voted NO on reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act. (Feb 2013)
  • Supports defining traditional marriage. (Oct 2012)
  • Sponsored state definition of marriage supersedes federal gay marriage. (Feb 2014)
Ted Cruz on Corporations
Click here for 2 full quotes on Corporations OR other candidates on Corporations OR background on Corporations.

  • Slash corporate tax rates to 15 percent. (Mar 2015)
  • Get senseless obstacles from Washington out of the way. (Jan 2015)
Ted Cruz on Crime
Click here for 4 full quotes on Crime OR other candidates on Crime OR background on Crime.

  • Convert regulatory crimes into civil offenses. (Apr 2015)
  • World Court should have no say in Texas executions. (Jul 2011)
  • Fully monitor sexual predators & bring them to justice. (Jul 2011)
  • Supports the death penalty. (Oct 2012)
Ted Cruz on Drugs
Click here for the full quote on Drugs OR other candidates on Drugs OR background on Drugs.

  • Lower minimums and mandatory sentencing for drugs. (Apr 2015)
Ted Cruz on Education
Click here for 5 full quotes on Education OR other candidates on Education OR background on Education.

  • Right to education: public, private, charter, or homeschool. (Mar 2015)
  • We should thank parents who homeschool. (Mar 2015)
  • Local control of education instead of Common Core. (Mar 2015)
  • Education decisions best made at local level. (Jun 2012)
  • Denounce the Common Core State Standards. (Feb 2014)
Ted Cruz on Energy & Oil
Click here for 5 full quotes on Energy & Oil OR other candidates on Energy & Oil OR background on Energy & Oil.

  • Fight against Gulf moratorium on offshore exploration. (Jul 2011)
  • Signed the No Climate Tax Pledge by AFP. (Aug 2012)
  • Cap-and-trade has no impact on global temperatures. (Jul 2010)
  • Explore proven energy reserves & keep energy prices low. (Jul 2010)
  • Let states lease energy rights on federal lands. (Jun 2013)
Ted Cruz on Environment
Click here for 2 full quotes on Environment OR other candidates on Environment OR background on Environment.

  • Don’t pick winners & losers like RFS’ ethanol in gasoline. (Mar 2015)
  • Voted NO on protecting ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes ecosystems. (May 2013)
Ted Cruz on Families & Children
Click here for 2 full quotes on Families & Children OR other candidates on Families & Children OR background on Families & Children.

  • Defend Judeo-Christian values against liberal fascism. (Apr 2015)
  • Opposes the unrelenting assault on traditional marriage. (Mar 2015)
Ted Cruz on Foreign Policy
Click here for 5 full quotes on Foreign Policy OR other candidates on Foreign Policy OR background on Foreign Policy.

  • Cuba is oppressive but never misses chance to propagandize. (Oct 2014)
  • Vigorous sanctions against Putin; help eastern Ukraine. (Jul 2014)
  • America is indispensable; our allies need our leadership. (Jun 2014)
  • Sanctions on Putin for Ukraine: tyrants respond to weakness. (Mar 2014)
  • US has a responsibility to defend our values abroad. (Mar 2014)
Ted Cruz on Free Trade
Click here for 4 full quotes on Free Trade OR other candidates on Free Trade OR background on Free Trade.

  • End the Export-Import Bank. (Aug 2015)
  • The Export-Import bank is corporate welfare. (Mar 2015)
  • Defended Chinese company on intellectual property theft. (May 2012)
  • Dewhurst lying about defending Chinese intellectual property. (May 2012)
Ted Cruz on Government Reform
Click here for 15 full quotes on Government Reform OR other candidates on Government Reform OR background on Government Reform.

  • If you like special interests, I ain’t your guy. (Aug 2015)
  • Executive actions override Congress & the Constitution. (Nov 2014)
  • Stop IRS from asking: ‘tell me the content of your prayers’. (Mar 2014)
  • Presidents should not pick & choose laws to enforce. (Mar 2014)
  • End Washington cronyism via Congressional term limits. (Mar 2014)
  • Obama dishonors Constitution by bypassing Congress. (Jan 2014)
  • Obama’s executive orders is open door for future lawlessness. (Jan 2014)
  • Debt ceiling limits “blank check” of federal spending. (Jan 2014)
  • Dems want to get as many Americans as possible dependent. (Oct 2012)
  • Head of the Center for Tenth Amendment Studies. (Jul 2011)
  • Require voters to show ID to avoid voter fraud. (Jul 2011)
  • Identify constitutionality in every new congressional bill. (Jul 2010)
  • Audit federal agencies, to reform or eliminate them. (Jul 2010)
  • Moratorium on all earmarks until budget is balanced. (Jul 2010)
  • Prohibit IRS audits targeting Tea Party political groups. (Feb 2014)
Ted Cruz on Gun Control
Click here for 4 full quotes on Gun Control OR other candidates on Gun Control OR background on Gun Control.

  • Opposes unreasonable and burdensome gun restrictions. (Jul 2011)
  • Voted NO on banning high-capacity magazines of over 10 bullets. (Apr 2013)
  • Opposes restricting the Second Amendment. (Oct 2012)
  • Oppose the United Nations’ Arms Trade Treaty. (Sep 2013)
Ted Cruz on Health Care
Click here for 16 full quotes on Health Care OR other candidates on Health Care OR background on Health Care.

  • Washington wants ObamaCare, the people want liberty. (Feb 2015)
  • Support nuns’ battle for religious liberty against ObamaCare. (Jan 2015)
  • Government shutdown on ObamaCare worked: GOP won in 2014. (Nov 2014)
  • Suspend commercial air travel to Ebola-infected areas. (Oct 2014)
  • To repeal ObamaCare, show Dems they’d lose by supporting it. (Mar 2014)
  • Obama changed ObamaCare mandate deadline by a blog post. (Jan 2014)
  • Obama asked companies to disobey ObamaCare rules for a year. (Jan 2014)
  • 5 million had health insurance canceled because of ObamaCare. (Jan 2014)
  • Vow to repeal ObamaCare. (Oct 2012)
  • Save Medicare by raising eligibility age. (Aug 2012)
  • Throw my body in front of a train to stop ObamaCare. (Apr 2012)
  • Defeat ObamaCare; rein in the federal government. (Jul 2011)
  • Defund, repeal, & replace federal care with free market. (Jul 2010)
  • Repeal any federal health care takeover. (Aug 2012)
  • Supports repealing ObamaCare. (Oct 2012)
  • Supports market-based health insurance. (Oct 2012)
Ted Cruz on Homeland Security
Click here for 8 full quotes on Homeland Security OR other candidates on Homeland Security OR background on Homeland Security.

  • Label the enemy that Obama won’t: radical Islamic terrorists. (Aug 2015)
  • Torture was rightly outlawed, but keep tactics classified. (Dec 2014)
  • Americans who join ISIS should be barred from coming home. (Sep 2014)
  • Vital role for deploying military force abroad. (Mar 2014)
  • Opposes TSA and National Defense Authorization Act. (Sep 2012)
  • Fierce advocate of recruiting and growing the military. (Jul 2011)
  • Supports banning military gay marriage. (Oct 2012)
  • Sponsored opposing the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty. (Mar 2013)
Ted Cruz on Immigration
Click here for 9 full quotes on Immigration OR other candidates on Immigration OR background on Immigration.

  • Support Kate’s Law: oppose our leaders who won’t enforce. (Aug 2015)
  • Path to citizenship is profoundly unfair to legal immigrants. (Feb 2015)
  • End Obama’s illegal amnesty via Congress’ checks & balances. (Nov 2014)
  • Defund amnesty; and refuse any nominees until rescinded. (Nov 2014)
  • No path to citizenship for 1.65 million illegals in Texas. (Oct 2012)
  • Give police more power to ask about immigration status. (Jun 2012)
  • Boots on the ground, plus a wall. (Apr 2012)
  • Triple the size of the Border Patrol. (Mar 2012)
  • Strengthen border security and increase enforcement. (Jul 2011)
Ted Cruz on Jobs
Click here for 3 full quotes on Jobs OR other candidates on Jobs OR background on Jobs.

  • Raising minimum wage by executive fiat opposes rule of law. (Jan 2014)
  • Lowest labor force participation in over three decades. (Jan 2014)
  • Extending unemployment benefits exacerbates joblessness. (Aug 2012)
Ted Cruz on Principles & Values
Click here for 9 full quotes on Principles & Values OR other candidates on Principles & Values OR background on Principles & Values.

  • I’m a consistent conservative, not a campaign conservative. (Aug 2015)
  • I’m despised by GOP establishment, but so was Reagan. (Feb 2015)
  • We win elections by bold principles & a positive agenda. (Mar 2014)
  • Washington would be better with more farmers & fewer lawyers. (Mar 2014)
  • Great Awakening: response to mess from career politicians. (Aug 2012)
  • OpEd: His law firm donated $200,000 to Obama’s campaign. (Apr 2012)
  • Defend Ten Commandments and “under God” in the Pledge. (Jul 2011)
  • Endorsed Member of the Tea Party movement. (Aug 2012)
  • Rated 100% by the AU, indicating opposition to separation of church & state. (Jan 2013)
Ted Cruz on Social Security
Click here for 3 full quotes on Social Security OR other candidates on Social Security OR background on Social Security.

  • Raise retirement age; cap increases to inflation rate. (Aug 2012)
  • Transition younger workers into personal savings system. (Jun 2012)
  • Rated 0% by ARA, indicating a pro-privatization stance. (Jan 2013)
Ted Cruz on Tax Reform
Click here for 7 full quotes on Tax Reform OR other candidates on Tax Reform OR background on Tax Reform.

  • Abolish the IRS. (Feb 2015)
  • Permanent Washington elite protects the tax code. (Apr 2012)
  • Adopt a single-rate tax system. (Jul 2010)
  • Repeal tax hikes in capital gains and death tax. (Jul 2010)
  • Supports the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. (Aug 2012)
  • Opposes increasing tax rates. (Oct 2012)
  • Supports eliminating the inheritance tax. (Oct 2012)
Ted Cruz on Technology
Click here for 3 full quotes on Technology OR other candidates on Technology OR background on Technology.

  • Of course China & Russia have conducted cyberwarfare on US. (Aug 2015)
  • Net neutrality is ObamaCare for the Internet. (Nov 2014)
  • Voted NO on authorizing states to collect Internet sales taxes. (May 2013)
Ted Cruz on War & Peace
Click here for 12 full quotes on War & Peace OR other candidates on War & Peace OR background on War & Peace.

  • If you wage jihad on America, you sign your death warrant. (Aug 2015)
  • Toughen sanctions on Iran, to safeguard America. (Mar 2015)
  • Provide defensive weapons for Ukraine against Russia. (Feb 2015)
  • Arm the Kurds to fight ISIS, with US air support. (Feb 2015)
  • Focused, direct military objective of destroying ISIS. (Feb 2015)
  • Bomb ISIS back to the Stone Age. (Oct 2014)
  • Arm & aid the Peshmerga Kurds against ISIS. (Oct 2014)
  • Don’t arm Syrian rebels without a clear plan to combat ISIS. (Sep 2014)
  • Bomb ISIS back into the Stone Age, with Congress’ approval. (Sep 2014)
  • Install Eastern European ABMs; stand up to Russia in Ukraine. (Jun 2014)
  • Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan went on too long. (Jun 2012)
  • Sponsored shutting down Iranian foreign reserves. (May 2013)
Ted Cruz on Welfare & Poverty
Click here for the full quote on Welfare & Poverty OR other candidates on Welfare & Poverty OR background on Welfare & Poverty.

  • Government checks create dependency. (Aug 2012)
VoteMatch Responses
(Click here for VoteMatch quiz)
VoteMatch Question & Answer
(Click on question for explanation and background)
Based on these stances:
(Click on topic for excerpt & citation)
Strongly Opposes topic 1:
Abortion is a woman’s unrestricted right
(-5 points on Social scale)
Ban taxpayer funding of abortion & partial birth abortion: Strongly Opposes topic 1
Companies can deny insuring birth control: Opposes topic 1
Protect innocent human life with partial-birth ban: Strongly Opposes topic 1
Opposes public abortion funding: Opposes topic 1
Opposes churches providing birth control: Opposes topic 1
No opinion on topic 2:
Legally require hiring women & minorities
(0 points on Economic scale)
Disallow Ku Klux Klan from participating in Adopt-A-Highway: Favors topic 2
NO on reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act: Opposes topic 2
Strongly Opposes topic 3:
Comfortable with same-sex marriage
(-5 points on Social scale)
Pray against a court decision legalizing same-sex marriage: Strongly Opposes topic 3
Zealotry on same-sex marriage leaves out religious liberty: Strongly Opposes topic 3
Most states can ignore Supreme Court legalizing gay marriage: Strongly Opposes topic 3
Opposes the unrelenting assault on traditional marriage: Strongly Opposes topic 3
Overturn Supreme Court with anti-gay marriage Amendment: Strongly Opposes topic 3
Opposes gay pride parades and opposes gay marriage: Strongly Opposes topic 3
One-man-one-woman marriage is building block of society: Strongly Opposes topic 3
Supports defining traditional marriage: Opposes topic 3
Supports banning military gay marriage: Opposes topic 3
Sponsored state definition of marriage supersedes federal gay marriage: Strongly Opposes topic 3
Strongly Favors topic 4:
Keep God in the public sphere
(-5 points on Social scale)
Defend Judeo-Christian values against liberal fascism: Strongly Favors topic 4
Stop IRS from asking: ‘tell me the content of your prayers’: Strongly Favors topic 4
Government checks create dependency: Favors topic 4
Defend Ten Commandments and “under God” in the Pledge: Strongly Favors topic 4
Rated 100% by the AU, indicating opposition to separation of church & state: Strongly Favors topic 4
Strongly Opposes topic 5:
Expand ObamaCare
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Washington wants ObamaCare, the people want liberty: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Support nuns’ battle for religious liberty against ObamaCare: Opposes topic 5
To repeal ObamaCare, show Dems they’d lose by supporting it: Opposes topic 5
5 million had health insurance canceled because of ObamaCare: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Vow to repeal ObamaCare: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Save Medicare by raising eligibility age: Favors topic 5
Throw my body in front of a train to stop ObamaCare: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Defeat ObamaCare; rein in the federal government: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Defund, repeal, & replace federal care with free market: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Repeal any federal health care takeover: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Supports repealing ObamaCare: Strongly Opposes topic 5
Supports market-based health insurance: Opposes topic 5
Strongly Favors topic 6:
Privatize Social Security
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Raise retirement age; cap increases to inflation rate: Favors topic 6
Transition younger workers into personal savings system: Favors topic 6
Rated 0% by ARA, indicating a pro-privatization stance: Strongly Favors topic 6
Strongly Favors topic 7:
Vouchers for school choice
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Right to education: public, private, charter, or homeschool: Strongly Favors topic 7
Education decisions best made at local level: Favors topic 7
Denounce the Common Core State Standards: Favors topic 7
Favors topic 8:
EPA regulations are too restrictive
(-3 points on Social scale)
NO on protecting ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes ecosystems: Favors topic 8
Strongly Favors topic 9:
Stricter punishment reduces crime
(-5 points on Social scale)
World Court should have no say in Texas executions: Strongly Favors topic 9
Fully monitor sexual predators & bring them to justice: Favors topic 9
Supports the death penalty: Strongly Favors topic 9
Strongly Favors topic 10:
Absolute right to gun ownership
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Opposes unreasonable and burdensome gun restrictions: Strongly Favors topic 10
Opposes restricting the Second Amendment: Favors topic 10
NO on banning high-capacity magazines of over 10 bullets: Strongly Favors topic 10
Opposes topic 11:
Higher taxes on the wealthy
(+2 points on Economic scale)
Abolish the IRS: Strongly Favors topic 11
Permanent Washington elite protects the tax code: Opposes topic 11
Adopt a single-rate tax system: Strongly Opposes topic 11
Repeal tax hikes in capital gains and death tax: Strongly Opposes topic 11
Supports the Taxpayer Protection Pledge: Strongly Opposes topic 11
Opposes increasing tax rates: Opposes topic 11
Supports eliminating the inheritance tax: Opposes topic 11
Strongly Opposes topic 12:
Pathway to citizenship for illegal aliens
(-5 points on Social scale)
End Obama’s illegal amnesty via Congress’ checks & balances: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Defund amnesty; and refuse any nominees until rescinded: Strongly Opposes topic 12
No path to citizenship for 1.65 million illegals in Texas: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Give police more power to ask about immigration status: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Boots on the ground, plus a wall: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Triple the size of the Border Patrol: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Strengthen border security and increase enforcement: Strongly Opposes topic 12
Strongly Favors topic 13:
Support & expand free trade
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Defended Chinese company on intellectual property theft: Strongly Favors topic 13
Strongly Favors topic 14:
Support American Exceptionalism
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Cuba is oppressive but never misses chance to propagandize: Favors topic 14
America is indispensable; our allies need our leadership: Strongly Favors topic 14
US has a responsibility to defend our values abroad: Favors topic 14
Sponsored opposing the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty: Strongly Favors topic 14
Oppose the United Nations’ Arms Trade Treaty: Favors topic 14
Strongly Favors topic 15:
Expand the military
(-5 points on Social scale)
Vital role for deploying military force abroad: Strongly Favors topic 15
Fierce advocate of recruiting and growing the military: Strongly Favors topic 15
No opinion on topic 16:
Make voter registration easier
(0 points on Social scale)
If you like special interests, I ain’t your guy: Favors topic 16
Require voters to show ID to avoid voter fraud: Opposes topic 16
Opposes topic 17:
Avoid foreign entanglements
(-3 points on Social scale)
Toughen sanctions on Iran, to safeguard America: Strongly Opposes topic 17
Arm the Kurds to fight ISIS, with US air support: Opposes topic 17
Bomb ISIS back to the Stone Age: Strongly Opposes topic 17
Arm & aid the Peshmerga Kurds against ISIS: Strongly Opposes topic 17
Don’t arm Syrian rebels without a clear plan to combat ISIS: Favors topic 17
Vigorous sanctions against Putin; help eastern Ukraine: Opposes topic 17
Install Eastern European ABMs; stand up to Russia in Ukraine: Opposes topic 17
Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan went on too long: Favors topic 17
Sponsored shutting down Iranian foreign reserves: Opposes topic 17
Strongly Opposes topic 18:
Prioritize green energy
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Fight against Gulf moratorium on offshore exploration: Strongly Opposes topic 18
Signed the No Climate Tax Pledge by AFP: Strongly Opposes topic 18
Cap-and-trade has no impact on global temperatures: Strongly Opposes topic 18
Explore proven energy reserves & keep energy prices low: Opposes topic 18
Let states lease energy rights on federal lands: Strongly Opposes topic 18
Opposes topic 19:
Marijuana is a gateway drug
(+2 points on Social scale)
Lower minimums and mandatory sentencing for drugs: Opposes topic 19
Strongly Opposes topic 20:
Stimulus better than market-led recovery
(+5 points on Economic scale)
Balanced budget amendment to stop bankrupting our country: Strongly Opposes topic 20
Debt ceiling limits “blank check” of federal spending: Strongly Opposes topic 20
Limit federal spending growth to per-capita inflation rate: Strongly Opposes topic 20
Supports the Cut-Cap-and-Balance Pledge: Opposes topic 20
Audit the Federal Reserve & its actions on mortgage loans: Opposes topic 20

Ted Cruz is a Hard-Core Conservative.
Click here for explanation of political philosophy.
Click here for VoteMatch quiz.

VoteMatch

Candidate’s Political Philosophy

The below is a way of thinking about the candidate’s political philosophy by dividing the candidate’s VoteMatch answers into “social” and “economic” questions.  It is only a theory – please take it with a grain of salt!Social Questions:  Liberals and libertarians agree in choosing the less-government answers, while conservatives and populists agree in choosing the more-restrictive answers.

Economic Questions:  Conservatives and libertarians agree in choosing the less-government answers, while liberals and populists agree in choosing the more-restrictive answers.

Candidate’s Score

The candidate scored the following on the VoteMatch questions:

Social Score 18%
Economic Score 93%
 Where the Candidate Fits In

Where the candidate’s Social score meets the Economic score on the grid below is the candidate’s political philosophy.  Based on the above score, the candidate is a Hard-Core Conservative.

Political Map

 
Social ScoreThis measures how much the candidate believes government should intervene in people’s personal lives or on social issues. These issues include health, morality, love, recreation, prayer and other activities that are not measured in dollars.

  • A high score (above 60%) means the candidate believes in tolerance for different people and lifestyles.
  • A low score (below 40%) means the candidate believes that standards of morality & safety should be enforced by government. 

Economic Score

This measures how much the candidate believes government should intervene in people’s economic lives. Economic issues include retirement funding, budget allocations, and taxes. 

  • A high score (above 60%) means the candidate believes in personal responsibility for financial matters, and that free-market competition is better for people than central planning by the government. 
  • A low score (below 40%) means the candidate believes that a good society is best achieved by the government redistributing wealth. The candidate believes that government’s purpose is to decide which programs are good for society, and how much should be spent on each program.

This measures how much the candidate believes government should intervene in people’s economic lives. Economic issues include retirement funding, budget allocations, and taxes. 

How We Score Candidates

How we determine a candidate’s stance on each VoteMatch question:

  • We collect up votes, excerpts from speeches, press releases, and so on, which are related to each question. Each of these are shown on the candidate’s VoteMatch table.
  • We assign an individual score for each item on the list. The scores can be: Strongly Favor, Favor, Neutral/Mixed, Oppose, Strongly Oppose. The scoring terms refer to the text of the question, not whether the candidate strongly opposed a bill, for example.
  • We then average the individual scores, using the numeric scale: Strongly Favor = 2, Favor = 1, Neutral/Mixed = 0, Oppose = -1, Strongly Oppose = -2.
  • If the average is above 1, the overall answer to the question is Strongly Favor.
  • If the average is above 0, the overall answer to the question is Favor.
  • If the average is exactly 0, the overall answer to the question is Neutral.
  • If the average is below 0, the overall answer to the question is Oppose.
  • If the average is below -1, the overall answer to the question is Strongly Oppose.
  • When you do a VoteMatch quiz, your answers are compared to each candidates’ overall answer to come up with a matching percentage.
  • To get the political philosophy of the candidate, we sum up the answers on two scales, the Personal/Social scale and the Economic Scale. Some questions aren’t used in the political philosophy calculations.
  • The VoteMatch table indicates the number of scale points from each answer (any one question can provide from 0 to 10 scale points on one scale or the other).
  • The combination of social/moral scales and economic scales produces a political philosophy description. A more detailed explanation appears below.
Examples

The chart below indicates how four “hard-core” political philosophers would answer the questions. From this example, you can see how the candidate fits in with each philosophy.  The candidate’s answers are on the left.

  • A “hard-core liberal” would answer social questions to minimize government involvement, but would answer economic questions to include government intervention.
  • A “hard-core libertarian” would answer both social and economic questions to minimize government involvement.
  • A “hard-core conservative” would answer social questions to include government intervention, but would answer economic questions to minimize government involvement.
  • A “hard-core populist” would answer both social and economic questions with proposals that include government intervention.

= Strongly Support    = Support    = No Opinion    = Oppose    = Strongly Oppose

Social Issues The candidate Hard-core Liberal Hard-core Libertarian Hard-Core Conservative Hard-Core Populist
Question 1. Abortion is a woman’s unrestricted right
Question 3. Comfortable with same-sex marriage
Question 8. Human needs over animal rights
Question 12. Pathway to citizenship for illegal aliens
Question 17. Stay out of Iran
Question 4. Keep God in the public sphere
Question 9. Stricter punishment reduces crime
Question 15. Expand the military
Question 16. Stricter limits on political campaign funds
Question 19. Never legalize marijuana

= Strongly Support    = Support    = No Opinion    = Oppose    = Strongly Oppose

Economic Issues The Candidate Hard-core Liberal Hard-core Libertarian Hard-Core Conservative Hard-Core Populist
Question 2. Legally require hiring women & minorities
Question 5. Expand ObamaCare
Question 11. Higher taxes on the wealthy
Question 18. Prioritize green energy
Question 20. Stimulus better than market-led recovery
Question 6. Privatize Social Security
Question 7. Vouchers for school choice
Question 10. Absolute right to gun ownership
Question 13. Support and expand Free Trade
Question 14. Maintain US sovereignty from UN
The Candidate Hard-core Liberal Hard-core Libertarian Hard-Core Conservative Hard-Core Populist

= Strongly Support    = Support    = No Opinion    = Oppose    = Strongly Oppose

Final Notes

To ensure balance among political viewpoints, we arranged the wording of the questions so that half the time, the answer involving more government is answered by “support”, and half the time by “oppose.” Hence, each of the “hard core” philosophers would choose “support” for 5 of the Social questions and for 5 of the Economic questions.

Many of these statements cross over the line between social issues and economic issues. And many people might answer what we call a “Social” issue based on economic reasoning. But we have tried to arrange a series of questions which separates the way candidates think about government activities in these two broad scales.

Political Map and some content from Advocates for Self-Government.

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American People’s Crisis of Confidence in Big Government And Out of Control Spending and Taxes — Abandoning Both Political Parties — The Coming Of A Third Independent Party — Toppling Two Party Tyranny — The Wealth Creators Will Lead The American Renaissance — Videos

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confidence in institutions

Free Market Revolution -The Solution to what Ails America Today

The mission of the Financial Policy Council Inc. (FPC), a research think tank and educational institution, is to formulate and promote sound public policy based on the principles of free enterprise and wealth creation as envisioned by the ideals of the American Founding Fathers.

Our goal is to ensure that America, the land of opportunity where freedom and prosperity have flourished, is not derailed by poorly formulated and reactive economic, fiscal and tax policy. In addition, our goal is to retain and reclaim America’s leading role in the global economic community.

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Myths That Conceal Reality

  • Americans’ confidence in presidency up four points, at 33%
  • Thirty-two percent have confidence in the Supreme Court
  • Congress retains the least confidence, at 8%

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Americans’ confidence in each of the three branches of the U.S. government remains low, with confidence in Congress and the Supreme Court near their all-time lows reached last year. Currently, 33% of Americans have “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in the presidency, 32% are this confident in the Supreme Court, and Congress is still well behind, at 8%.

Trend: Americans' Level of Confidence in the Three Branches of Government

While Congress has consistently received the lowest confidence rating of the three branches of government, the Supreme Court and the presidency usually track each other closely. This is apart from times when the incumbent president has been extremely popular, as in 1991 and 2002, or exceptionally unpopular, as in 2007 and 2008.

Gallup’s June 2-7 poll found confidence in the presidency rising slightly to 33% from 29% last year, which in turn was just four percentage points above the historical low of 25% in 2007. The uptick in confidence in the presidency this year is consistent with Americans’ higher job approval ratings of President Barack Obama since last fall.

Meanwhile, ratings of the Supreme Court and Congress, which had dropped to record lows in 2014, have barely moved.

Confidence in the Presidency in Obama’s Seventh Year Exceeds Bush’s

The president in office is not mentioned by name in the confidence in the presidency question, but Americans’ evaluations of the sitting president at the time are strongly related to how much confidence Americans place in the presidency as an institution.

Confidence in the presidency as an institution during each year of Obama’s presidency has generally been lower than the comparable year in the presidencies of Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. An exception is Obama’s first year, when Americans had greater confidence in the institution than in the first years of either Bush or Clinton. Also, in Obama’s current year in office, his seventh, confidence in the presidency is higher than the 25% found in Bush’s seventh year — the record low — but lower than the 49% in Clinton’s seventh year.

Americans' Level of Confidence in the U.S. Presidency, by Term Year

The highest confidence rating the presidency has ever received is 72%, in March 1991 during the administration of George H.W. Bush shortly after he had succeeded in pushing Iraq out of Kuwait in the Gulf War. However, by October of that same year, after the Gulf War was over, confidence in the presidency had dropped to 50%.

Average Confidence in the Three Branches Is Low, but Has Been Lower

The average confidence rating for the three branches of government combined is 24%, lower than most previous averages since 1991 and well below the high of 50% that year.

But the average of confidence ratings for the three branches of government has been lower — including in 2008 (23%) and 2014 (22%).

Trend: Average of Americans' Confidence Ratings of the Three Branches of Government

Bottom Line

Americans’ confidence in two of the three institutions that make up the U.S. government — Congress and the Supreme Court — remains near their all-time lows reached in 2014, while confidence in the presidency, although low, is up marginally compared with last year.

For Congress, low confidence in the institution is nothing new to members of the Senate and the House of Representatives, who have also seen low job approval ratings in recent years. Individual members likely aren’t as interested in Americans’ collective opinions as they are in the views of the voters they must appeal to back home. But the public’s extremely low confidence no doubt weighs on Congress at some level.

The Supreme Court, meanwhile, is not directly accountable to the public — and often defies public opinion completely. Although its unelected members serve indefinite terms, confidence in the court is not unsusceptible to a drop in confidence in government as a whole.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted June 2-7, 2015, with a random sample of 1,527 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±3 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183605/confidence-branches-government-remains-low.aspx?utm_source=Politics&utm_medium=newsfeed&utm_campaign=tiles

Americans Have Lost Confidence … in Everything

It’s not just Congress and the economy that have Americans concerned these days.

Stock image of the U.S. Capitol on the back of a U.S. $20 bill.

Americans expressed a lack of confidence in banks and Congress, among other institutions.

By June 17, 2015 | 7:20 a.m. EDT+ More

Americans have little confidence in most of their major institutions including Congress, the presidency, the Supreme Court, banks and organized religion, according to the latest Gallup poll.

“Americans’ confidence in most major U.S. institutions remains below the historical average for each one,” a Gallup spokesman said in a news release. Only the military, in which 72 percent of Americans express confidence, up from a historical average of 68 percent, and small business, with 67 percent confidence, up from 63, are currently rated higher than their historical norms. This is based on the percentage expressing “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in these institutions, the Gallup spokesman said.

Only 8 percent have confidence in Congress, down by 16 points from a long-term average of 24 percent – the lowest of all institutions rated. The rating is about the same as last year’s 7 percent, the lowest Gallup has ever measured for any institution.

Kanishka Berashk currently lives in Kabul. His U.S. citizen wife asked the Supreme Court to force greater explanation for his visa denial.

Thirty-three percent have confidence in the presidency, a drop from a historical average of 43 percent.

Thirty-two percent have confidence in the Supreme Court, down from 44.

All in all, it’s a picture of a nation discouraged about its present and worried about its future, and highly doubtful that its institutions can pull America out of its trough. In a political context, the findings indicate that the growing number of presidential candidates for 2016 will have a difficult time instilling confidence in a skeptical electorate that they have the answers to the country’s problems.

“Americans’ confidence in most major institutions has been down for many years as the nation has dealt with prolonged wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a major recession and sluggish economic improvement, and partisan gridlock in Washington,” the Gallup spokesman said. “In fact, 2004 was the last year most institutions were at or above their historical average levels of confidence. Perhaps not coincidentally, 2004 was also the last year Americans’ satisfaction with the way things are going in the United States averaged better than 40 percent. Currently, 28 percent of Americans are satisfied with the state of the nation.”

The Gallup spokesman added: “From a broad perspective, Americans’ confidence in all institutions over the last two years has been the lowest since Gallup began systematic updates of a larger set of institutions in 1993.”

Twenty-eight percent have confidence in banks, down from 40 percent.

Twenty-one percent have confidence in big business, down from 24 percent.

Twenty-four percent have confidence in organized labor, down from 26.

Twenty-four percent have confidence in newspapers, down from 32 percent. Twenty-one percent have confidence in television news, down from 30 percent.

The police also have experienced a drop in public esteem, with 52 percent of Americans saying they are confident in the police compared with 57 percent who have been confident in the police historically. Police have been widely criticized in recent months for abusive tactics toward African-Americans, which resulted in the deaths of several black men.

Forty-two percent express confidence in organized religion, down from 55.

“Americans continue to show lower levels of confidence in most of the major institutions central to U.S. society, with only the military and small business getting ratings in 2015 that are above their historical averages,” the Gallup spokesman said. “That speaks to the broader dissatisfaction Americans have with the state of the nation more generally over the past decade as the U.S. has faced serious economic, international and political challenges. Americans have tended to be more confident in U.S. institutions when the economy has been strong, such as in the mid-1980s and the late 1990s and early 2000s. Although Americans are now more upbeat about the economy than they were in 2008-2013, they are not yet convinced that the economy is good, given that their assessments of national economic conditions remain more negative than positive.”

AMERICANS LOSE CONFIDENCE IN EVERYTHING

Poll shows views turning negative on banks, government, religion, police, media

An explosive new Gallup poll shows Americans have lost confidence in almost every major institution – from the U.S. presidency, Congress and the Supreme Court to banks and organized religion.

“Americans’ confidence in most major U.S. institutions remains below the historical average for each one,” a Gallup spokesman said.

Only the military (72 percent) and small business (67 percent) have Americans’ increasing confidence, both of which are now rated 4 percentage points higher than their historical norms, according to the poll.

Congress – which plunged 16 points from its average of 24 points – is the lowest ranking institution at just 8 percent.

Just as numerous presidential candidates attempt to convince America that they have the answers to the nation’s problems, the poll shows only one-third, or 33 percent, of Americans have confidence in the presidency, a nosedive from the historical average of 43 percent.

Likewise, just 32 percent said they have confidence in the Supreme Court, which is down from an average of 44 just before the court announces its decisions on landmark issues such as same-sex marriage and Obamacare subsidies to states without insurance-exchange websites.

image: http://www.wnd.com/files/2015/06/gallup_2015.jpg

gallup_2015

“Americans’ confidence in most major institutions has been down for many years as the nation has dealt with prolonged wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a major recession and sluggish economic improvement, and partisan gridlock in Washington,” a Gallup spokesman said. “In fact, 2004 was the last year most institutions were at or above their historical average levels of confidence. Perhaps not coincidentally, 2004 was also the last year Americans’ satisfaction with the way things are going in the United States averaged better than 40 percent. Currently, 28 percent of Americans are satisfied with the state of the nation.”

In 2004, President George W. Bush was re-elected and the U.S. transferred sovereignty and control of Iraq back to the Iraqi people.

At the beginning of 2004, the U.S. economy was booming. Four middle-class tax cuts were extended, including a $1,000-per-couple child tax credit, expansion of the lowest (10 percent) tax bracket, exceptions for the alternative minimum tax, and relief from the “marriage penalty” for two-income families. Another $140 billion in tax relief was granted to U.S. business. Unemployment dropped from 5.7 percent to 5.4 percent.

Regarding the latest poll numbers, the Gallup spokesman added, “From a broad perspective, Americans’ confidence in all institutions over the last two years has been the lowest since Gallup began systematic updates of a larger set of institutions in 1993.”

In the last two years, Americans have seen President Obama begin his second term of office. Amid an explosion of legalized same-sex marriage in numerous U.S. states, the Supreme Court declared the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional.

Americans witnessed the debt-ceiling crisis in October 2013, which resulted in the shutdown of the federal government and furlough of federal workers.

By 2014, the Obama administration had announced its plan to shrink the military budget to $522 billion and slash the Army to a size unseen since before World War II. The nation also saw Americans impacted by a West African Ebola outbreak and revelations that the Veterans Administration had covered up exceedingly long wait times for veterans seeking medical attention.

The year 2014 also saw the rise of terrorist group ISIS and racial riots in Ferguson, Missouri, and St. Louis after the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown in August. By 2015, riots had broken out in Baltimore, Maryland, over the shooting of Freddie Gray.

image: http://www.wnd.com/files/2015/06/Gallup_2015b.jpg

Gallup_2015b

According to the Gallup poll, 28 percent of Americans now have confidence in banks, compared to the historical average of 40 percent.

Twenty-one percent said they have confidence in big business, down from 24 percent.

Twenty-four percent have confidence in organized labor, down from 26 percent.

Twenty-four percent have confidence in newspapers, down from 32 percent.

Twenty-one percent have confidence in TV news, down from 30 percent.

Fifty-two percent have confidence in police, down from 57 percent.

Forty-two percent have confidence in organized religion, down from 55.

“Americans continue to show lower levels of confidence in most of the major institutions central to U.S. society, with only the military and small business getting ratings in 2015 that are above their historical averages,” the Gallup spokesman said.

“That speaks to the broader dissatisfaction Americans have with the state of the nation more generally over the past decade as the U.S. has faced serious economic, international and political challenges. Americans have tended to be more confident in U.S. institutions when the economy has been strong, such as in the mid-1980s and the late 1990s and early 2000s.”

While Americans are more confident in the economy than they were from 2008 to 2013, the Gallup spokesman said, “[T]hey are not yet convinced that the economy is good, given that their assessments of national economic conditions remain more negative than positive.”

http://www.wnd.com/2015/06/poll-americans-lose-confidence-in-everything/

List of political parties in the United States

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This is a list of political parties in the United States, both past and present.

Parties with federal representation

Current United States Congressional seats

Political Parties House of Representatives Senate
Republican Party 245 54
Democratic Party 188 44
Independent 0 2
Vacant 2 0

Congressional leadership of the House of Representatives

Position Representative
Speaker of the House John Boehner (R)
Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R)
Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D)

Congressional leadership of the Senate

Position Senator
President of the Senate Joe Biden (D)
President Pro Tempore Orrin Hatch (R)
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R)
Minority Leader Harry Reid (D)

The Vice President of the United States has the additional duty of President of the Senate. Because the number of seats in the United States Senate is an even number (two senators per state), it is the Vice President’s duty as President of the Senate to cast a tie-breaking vote in the event that “they be equally divided”—an equal number of Senators voting both for and against a motion.

Parties with state representation

Political Parties State Lower Chamber Seats State Upper Chamber Seats
Republican Party 3,044 1,134
Democratic Party 2,344 832
Vermont Progressive Party 6 3
Working Families Party 1 1
Conservative Party of New York State 1 0
Independence Party of New York 1 0
Independent 13 3
Vacant 4 3
Total 5,411 1,972

Major political parties

A party that has “an independent state organization… in a majority of the states”[1] is listed as a major party. An “independent state organization” is not to be confused with the organization of an Independent Democrat or Independent Republican.

Political Party States* Founded in Former Titles International Affiliations
Democratic Party 50 + DC 1828 Progressive Alliance[2]
Republican Party 50 + DC 1854 International Democrat Union
Libertarian Party 48 + DC[3] 1971 Interlibertarians[4]
Green Party 36 + DC[5] 1991 Global Greens
Constitution Party 26[5] 1992 U.S. Taxpayers’ Party

Minor political parties

This listing of minor parties does not include independents.

Political Party Founded in Former Titles International Affiliations
America First Party 2002
American Conservative Party 2008
American Freedom Party 2010 American Third Position Party
American Populist Party 2009
America’s Party 2008 America’s Independent Party
Christian Liberty Party* 1996 American Heritage Party
Citizens Party of the United States 2004 New American Independent Party
Communist Party USA 1919 International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties
Freedom Socialist Party 1966
Independent American Party 1998
Justice Party 2011
Modern Whig Party 2008
National Socialist Movement 1974 National Socialist American Workers Freedom Movement World Union of National Socialists
Objectivist Party 2008
Party for Socialism and Liberation 2004
Peace and Freedom Party 1967
Pirate Party 2006 Pirate Party International (observer)
Prohibition Party 1869
Reform Party of the United States of America 1995 United We Stand America
Socialist Action 1983 Fourth International
Socialist Alternative 1986 Labor Militant Committee for a Workers’ International
Socialist Equality Party 1966 Workers League International Committee of the Fourth International
Socialist Party USA 1973
Socialist Workers Party 1938 Pathfinder tendency (unofficial)
United States Marijuana Party 2002
United States Pacifist Party 1983
Unity Party of America 2004
Workers World Party 1959

Regional parties

These parties are based only in states or certain regions and rarely, if ever, offer candidates for national offices. These are all parties that are unaffiliated with national parties. Each state has official state chapters of the major parties as well as some of the minor parties.

Alaska

Connecticut

Delaware

Hawaii

Michigan

Minnesota

New York

Northern Mariana Islands[edit]

Ohio

Oregon

Puerto Rico

Rhode Island

U.S. Virgin Islands

Vermont

Wisconsin

Historical parties

The following parties are no longer functioning; they are listed in order of founding.

Non-electoral organizations

These organizations do not nominate candidates for election but otherwise function similarly to political parties. Some of them have nominated candidates in the past.

Political Party Founded in Former Titles International Affiliations
American Falangist Party 1985
American Nazi Party 1959 World Union of Free Enterprise National Socialists
American Reform Party 1997
Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism 1991 Committees of Correspondence
Communist Voice Organization 1995
Democratic Socialists of America 1982 Socialist International
Freedom Road Socialist Organization (freedomroad.org group) 1985
Freedom Road Socialist Organization (frso.org group) 1985 International Communist Seminar
Fourth International Caucus(faction of Solidarity) 1995 Fourth International (USFI)
Greens/Green Party USA 1991
International Socialist Organization 1977
Internationalism 1970 International Communist Current
Internationalist Group 1996 League for the Fourth International
Internationalist Workers’ Group 2002 International Communist Tendency
League for the Revolutionary Party 1976 Communist Organization for the Fourth International
League of Revolutionaries for a New America 1993
News and Letters Committees 1955
Progressive Labor Party 1961 Progressive Labor Movement *
Refoundation and Revolution(faction of Solidarity) 2002 Trotskyist League Coordinating Committee for the Refoundation of the Fourth International
Revolutionary Communist Party, USA 1975 Revolutionary Union
Revolutionary Organization of Labor 1961 Ray O. Light International Communist Seminar, International Conference of Marxist-Leninist Parties and Organizations (International Newsletter), International Coordination of Revolutionary Parties and Organizations
Social Democrats, USA 1972
Socialist Organizer 1991 Fourth International (International Center of Reconstruction)
Socialist Workers Organization 2001
Solidarity 1986
Spartacist League 1966 International Communist League (Fourth Internationalist)
The Spark 1971 International Communist Union
U.S. Marxist–Leninist Organization 1981
Workers Party 2003
World Socialist Party of the United States 1916 Socialist Party of the UnitedStatesSocialist Educational SocietyWorkers’ Socialist Party World Socialist Movement

See also

References

Further reading

External links

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_political_parties_in_the_United_States

Ambassador Terry Miller and Anthony B. Kim

Since its inception in 1995, the Index of Economic Freedom has chronicled hundreds of examples of government policy changes that have enhanced economic freedom, thereby promoting human progress and greater prosperity. As the Index has catalogued, nations with higher degrees of economic freedom prosper because they capitalize more fully on the ability of the free-market system not only to generate, but also to reinforce dynamic growth through efficient resource allocation, value creation, and innovation. Policies that promote freedom, whether through improvements in the rule of law, the promotion of competition and openness, or suitable restraints on the size and economic reach of government, turn out in practice to offer and advance practical solutions to a wide range of economic and social challenges that face the world’s societies.

The findings of the 2015 Index once again demonstrate the strongly positive linkages between economic freedom and various dimensions of human development. Many of the linkages are straightforward: Higher taxes, for example, reduce investment and hurt job growth. Others, such as the impact on economic growth from the promotion of property rights or the maintenance of a stable monetary system, are more intricate, multidimensional, and nonlinear.

Even in these cases, however, the evidence is strong that adherence to the principles of economic freedom is an unmatched strategy for promoting solutions to human problems and advancing overall well-being. No alternative systems—and many have been tried—come close to the record of free-market capitalism in promoting growth and improving the human condition.

Economic Freedom: Advancing Opportunity

Today’s successful economies are not necessarily geographically large or richly blessed with natural resources. Many economies have managed to expand opportunities for their citizens by enhancing their economic dynamism. In general, the overarching objective of economic policies must be to create an environment that provides the most opportunity for the widest range of activities that can lead to increased prosperity.

The Index results have shown that sustaining such economic dynamism is achievable only when governments adopt economic policies that empower individuals and firms with more choices, encouraging greater entrepreneurship.

It is noteworthy that despite recent policy missteps by many countries in responding to the global economic slowdown, which amounted to a political assault on capitalism in some places, the free-market system is not on the verge of breakdown. In fact, as the negative impact of regulatory and spending mistakes has become apparent, a greater number of people around the world seem to be realizing that the economic damage inflicted by the heavy hand of government—subpar growth, deteriorating entrepreneurial environments, and lower employment growth—is not inevitable, but rather the result of bad policy choices.

Even as the free market has been under challenge in countries such as Venezuela, Bolivia, Russia, and even the United States, many other governments around the world have acknowledged its superiority. Decades of evidence, some presented in the pages of this Index, are hard for even the most ideological governments to ignore. Not only does the free-market system remain viable, but many of its core features, such as private property rights, openness to trade and investment, and fiscal discipline, have entrenched themselves as the policy standard, any deviation from which requires strong justification.

Economic Freedom: Promoting Prosperity

In many respects, economic freedom is merely shorthand for an openness to entrepreneurial activity that increases opportunity for individuals to succeed in their endeavors. Chart 1 shows the close correspondence between economic freedom and entrepreneurial opportunity as measured by the Entrepreneurship and Opportunity sub-index of the Legatum Prosperity Index, which “measures a country’s entrepreneurial environment, its promotion of innovative activity, and the evenness ofopportunity.”

Given such a strong relationship, it should be apparent that a government’s most effective stimulus activity will not be to increase its own spending or increase layers of regulation, both of which reduce economic freedom. The best results are likely to be achieved instead through policy reforms that improve the incentives that drive entrepreneurial activity, creating more opportunities for greater economicdynamism.

Equally notable are the fundamental benefits that stem from the strong positive relationship between economic freedom and levels of per capita income. For countries achieving scores in the Index that reflect even moderate levels of economic freedom (60 or above), the relationship between economic freedom and per capita GDP is highly significant.

As indicated in Chart 2, countries moving up the economic freedom scale show increasingly high levels of average income. Economies rated “free” or “mostly free” in the 2015 Index enjoy incomes that are over twice the average levels in all other countries and more than five times higher than the incomes of “repressed” economies.

Economic Freedom: Antidote to Poverty

By a great many measures, the past two decades during which the Index has been charting the advance of economic freedom have been the most prosperous in the history of humankind. Those countries that have adopted some version of free-market capitalism, with economies supported by efficient regulations and open to the free flow of goods, services, and capital, have participated in an era of globalization and economic integration in which solutions to many of the world’s development problems have taken hold and generated real improvements in living standards.

The free-market system that is rooted in the principles of economic freedom has fueled unprecedented economic growth around the world. As Chart 3 illustrates, as the global economy has moved toward greater economic freedom over the past two decades, real world GDP has increased by about 70 percent, and the global poverty rate has been cut in half, lifting hundreds of millions of people out of poverty.

Greater economic freedom has had a positive impact not just on the number of people in poverty, but also on the intensity of the poverty still experienced by some. Poverty intensity as measured by the United Nations Development Programme’s Multidimensional Poverty Index, which assesses the nature and intensity of deprivation at the individual level in education, health outcomes, and standard of living, is much lower on average in countries with higher levels of economic freedom. Chart 5 shows that the intensity of poverty in countries whose economies are considered mostly free or moderately free is only about one-fourth the level in countries that are rated less free.

The key driver of poverty reduction is dynamic and resilient economic growth that creates jobs. Not surprisingly, one of the most important goals of economic policy in almost every country in the world has thus been to increase the rate of economic growth.

As Chart 4 demonstrates, there is a robust relationship between improving economic freedom and achieving higher per capita economic growth. Whether long-term (20 years), medium-term (10 years), or short-term (five years), the relationship between changes in economic freedom and changes in economic growth is consistently positive.

Undeniably, countries moving toward greater economic freedom tend to achieve higher rates of per capita GDP growth over time. Whether in the short term or over the long run, the average annual per capita economic growth rates of countries that have grown economic freedom the most are at least 50 percent higher than those of countries where freedom has stagnated or slowed.

Economic Freedom: Societal Development and Democratic Progress

Growing economic freedom is unequivocally about more than financial success. Achieving greater overall prosperity that goes beyond materialistic and monetary dimensions of well-being is equally important. The societal benefits of economic freedom extend far beyond higher incomes or reductions in poverty. Countries with higher levels of economic freedom enjoy higher levels of overall human development as measured by the United Nations Human Development Index, which measures life expectancy, literacy, education, and the standard of living in countries worldwide. As Chart 6 shows, governments that choose policies that increase economic freedom are placing their societies on the pathway to more education opportunities, better health care, and higher standards of living for their citizens.

In some countries, government policies and actions concerning the environment have become more intrusive and economically distortionary. Many governments have pushed programs to tax carbon emissions and increase taxes on gasoline, organized non-transparent and sometimes corrupt exchanges for the buying and selling of carbon emissions, and provided subsidies for “clean” energy to politically favored firms. Such policies impose a huge direct cost on society, and they also retard economic growth—and all for uncertain environmental benefits.

Interestingly, the same free-market principles that have proven to be the key to economic success have also proven to deliver environmental success. Around the world, economic freedom has been shown to increase countries’ capacity for innovation and thus to improve overall environmental performance.

The positive link between economic freedom and higher levels of innovation ensures greater economic dynamism in coping with various developmental challenges, and the most remarkable improvements in clean energy use and energy efficiency over the past decades have occurred not as a result of government regulation, but rather because of advances in technology and trade. A virtuous cycle of investment, innovation (including in greener technologies), and dynamic economic growth has flourished where governments have trusted market forces and competition to spur efficiency. (See Chart 7.)

Greater economic freedom can also provide more fertile ground for effective and democratic governance. Debate over the direction of causality between economic freedom and democracy has become more controversial in recent years because of the multifaceted interaction between the two. Undoubtedly, achieving greater political freedom through well-functioning democracy is a messy and often excruciatingprocess.

However, the positive relationship between economic freedom and democratic governance is undeniable. (See Chart 8.) By empowering people to exercise greater control of their daily lives, economic freedom ultimately nurtures political reform by making it possible for individuals to gain the economic resources necessary to challenge entrenched interests and compete for political power, thereby encouraging the creation of more pluralistic societies.

Pursuit of greater economic freedom is thus an important stepping-stone to democracy. It empowers the poor and builds the middle class. It is a philosophy that encourages entrepreneurship and disperses economic power and decision-making throughout society.

Economic Freedom: The Key to Upward Mobility and Greater Social Progress

The massive improvements in global indicators of income and quality of life largely reflect a paradigm shift in the debate over how societies should be structured to achieve the most optimal outcome. Over the past two decades, this debate has largely been won by capitalism. However, fears that the immediate benefits of capitalism are fading has brought to the forefront concerns about economic mobility and economicfreedom.

At the heart of ensuring upward economic mobility is the task of advancing economic freedom so that dynamic and inclusive growth can meaningfully occur for ordinary people in a free society. Milton and Rose Friedman made a keen observation on the critically intertwined relationship between freedom andmobility:

[S]o long as freedom is maintained, it prevents … positions of privilege from becoming institutionalized. Freedom means diversity, but also mobility. It preserves the opportunity for today’s disadvantaged to become tomorrow’s privileged and, in the process enables almost everyone, from top to bottom, to enjoy a fuller and richer life.1

Economic freedom is critical to generating the broader-based economic growth that brings more opportunities for a greater number of people to work, produce, and save. In other words, ensuring greater economic freedom is directly related to preserving and enhancing dynamic upward mobility.

Also notable is that although some naysayers claim that economic and social progress has been limited in recent years as incomes in some countries have become more unequal as a result of economic freedom, the evidence does not support this contention. Instead, societies based on economic freedom are the ones that have demonstrated the strongest social progress.

As shown in Chart 9, countries that largely embrace economic freedom provide the environments that are most conducive to social progress.2 Countries that improve their competitiveness and open their societies to new ideas, products, and innovations have largely achieved the high levels of social progress that their citizens demand. It is not massive redistributions of wealth or government dictates on income levels that produce the most positive social outcomes. Instead, mobility and progress require lower barriers to entry, freedom to engage with the world, and less government intrusion.

Staying on Course

The 21st edition of the Index of Economic Freedom shows economic freedom once again on the rise, reaching the highest point in the Index’s 21-year history. Behind this record are stories of human progress and the achievements of countries and their citizens—literally billions of people around the world whose lives have measurably improved.

It is no coincidence that the increase of economic liberty over the past decades has coincided with a massive reduction in worldwide poverty, disease, and hunger. The link between economic freedom and development is clear and strong. People in economically free societies live longer. They have better health. They are able to be better stewards of the environment, and they push forward the frontiers of human achievement in science and technology through greater innovation.

A recurring theme of human history has been resilience and revival. The country profiles in the 2015 Index of Economic Freedom include many examples of countries that have accelerated their economic and social progress in the face of difficult challenges and a sometimes harsh international environment. Their successes can be emulated by others. The Index of Economic Freedom charts not just one path to development, but as many as the ingenuity of humans can produce when they are free to experiment andinnovate.

The principles of economic freedom are a sure guide, but only a guide. What truly will matter are the creative solutions to pressing world problems that are certain to flow from people who are, in the words of Milton and Rose Friedman, “free to choose.”

1. Milton Friedman and Rose D. Friedman, Free to Choose: A Personal Statement (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1979).

2. The Social Progress Index defines social progress as the capacity of a society to meet the basic human needs of its citizens, establish the building blocks that allow citizens and communities to enhance and sustain the quality of their lives, and create the conditions for all individuals to reach their full potential.

http://www.heritage.org/index/book/chapter-2

Country Rankings

Free

rank country overall change rank country overall change
1 Hong Kong 89.6 -0.5 4 Australia 81.4 -0.6
2 Singapore 89.4 0.0 5 Switzerland 80.5 -1.1
3 New Zealand 82.1 +0.9

Mostly Free

rank country overall change rank country overall change
6 Canada 79.1 -1.1 21 Luxembourg 73.2 -1.0
7 Chile 78.5 -0.2 22 Georgia 73.0 +0.4
8 Estonia 76.8 +0.9 23 Sweden 72.7 -0.4
9 Ireland 76.6 +0.4 24 Czech Republic 72.5 +0.3
10 Mauritius 76.4 -0.1 25 United Arab Emirates 72.4 +1.0
11 Denmark 76.3 +0.2 26 Iceland 72.0 -0.4
12 United States 76.2 +0.7 27 Norway 71.8 +0.9
13 United Kingdom 75.8 +0.9 28 Colombia 71.7 +1.0
14 Taiwan 75.1 +1.2 29 South Korea 71.5 +0.3
15 Lithuania 74.7 +1.7 30 Austria 71.2 -1.2
16 Germany 73.8 +0.4 31 Malaysia 70.8 +1.2
17 The Netherlands 73.7 -0.5 32 Qatar 70.8 -0.4
18 Bahrain 73.4 -1.7 33 Israel 70.5 +2.1
19 Finland 73.4 0.0 34 Macau 70.3 -1.0
20 Japan 73.3 +0.9 35 Saint Lucia 70.2 -0.5

Moderately Free

rank country overall change rank country overall change
36 Botswana 69.8 -2.2 64 Portugal 65.3 +1.8
37 Latvia 69.7 +1.0 65 Rwanda 64.8 +0.1
38 Jordan 69.3 +0.1 66 Montenegro 64.7 +1.1
39 Brunei Darussalam 68.9 -0.1 67 Trinidad and Tobago 64.1 +1.4
40 Belgium 68.8 -1.1 68 Panama 64.1 +0.7
41 The Bahamas 68.7 -1.1 69 Kazakhstan 63.3 -0.4
42 Poland 68.6 +1.6 70 Turkey 63.2 -1.7
43 Uruguay 68.6 -0.7 71 Ghana 63.0 -1.2
44 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 68.0 +1.0 72 South Africa 62.6 +0.1
45 Cyprus 67.9 +0.3 73 France 62.5 -1.0
46 Barbados 67.9 -0.4 74 Kuwait 62.5 +0.2
47 Peru 67.7 +0.3 75 Thailand 62.4 -0.9
48 Jamaica 67.7 +1.0 76 Philippines 62.2 +2.1
49 Spain 67.6 +0.4 77 Saudi Arabia 62.1 -0.1
50 Slovakia 67.2 +0.8 78 Samoa 61.9 +0.8
51 Costa Rica 67.2 +0.3 79 Madagascar 61.7 0.0
52 Armenia 67.1 -1.8 80 Italy 61.7 +0.8
53 Macedonia 67.1 -1.5 81 Croatia 61.5 +1.1
54 Hungary 66.8 -0.2 82 Kyrgyz Republic 61.3 +0.2
55 Bulgaria 66.8 +1.1 83 Paraguay 61.1 -0.9
56 Oman 66.7 -0.7 84 Vanuatu 61.1 +1.6
57 Romania 66.6 +1.1 85 Azerbaijan 61.0 -0.3
58 Malta 66.5 +0.1 86 Dominican Republic 61.0 -0.3
59 Mexico 66.4 -0.4 87 Guatemala 60.4 -0.8
60 Cabo Verde 66.4 +0.3 88 Slovenia 60.3 -2.4
61 Dominica 66.1 +0.9 89 Morocco 60.1 +1.8
62 El Salvador 65.7 -0.5 90 Serbia 60.0 +0.6
63 Albania 65.7 -1.2

Mostly Unfree

rank country overall change rank country overall change
91 Swaziland 59.9 -1.3 122 Kenya 55.6 -1.5
92 Uganda 59.7 -0.2 123 Guyana 55.5 -0.2
93 Namibia 59.6 +0.2 124 Egypt 55.2 +2.3
94 Lebanon 59.3 -0.1 125 Mozambique 54.8 -0.2
95 Tonga 59.3 +1.1 126 Malawi 54.8 -0.6
96 Mongolia 59.2 +0.3 127 Niger 54.6 -0.5
97 Bosnia and Herzegovina 59.0 +0.6 128 India 54.6 -1.1
98 Fiji 59.0 +0.3 129 Suriname 54.2 0.0
99 Benin 58.8 +1.7 130 Greece 54.0 -1.7
100 Zambia 58.7 -1.7 131 Bangladesh 53.9 -0.2
101 Sri Lanka 58.6 -1.4 132 Burundi 53.7 +2.3
102 Burkina Faso 58.6 -0.3 133 Yemen 53.7 -1.8
103 Côte d’Ivoire 58.5 +0.8 134 Maldives 53.4 +2.4
104 Gabon 58.3 +0.5 135 Mauritania 53.3 +0.1
105 Indonesia 58.1 -0.4 136 São Tomé and Príncipe 53.3 +4.5
106 Senegal 57.8 +2.4 137 Papua New Guinea 53.1 -0.8
107 Tunisia 57.7 +0.4 138 Togo 53.0 +3.1
108 Nicaragua 57.6 -0.8 139 China 52.7 +0.2
109 Tanzania 57.5 -0.3 140 Tajikistan 52.7 +0.7
110 Cambodia 57.5 +0.1 141 Liberia 52.7 +0.3
111 Moldova 57.5 +0.2 142 Comoros 52.1 +0.7
112 Djibouti 57.5 +1.6 143 Russia 52.1 +0.2
113 The Gambia 57.5 -2.0 144 Guinea 52.1 -1.4
114 Seychelles 57.5 +1.3 145 Guinea-Bissau 52.0 +0.7
115 Bhutan 57.4 +0.7 146 Cameroon 51.9 -0.7
116 Honduras 57.4 +0.3 147 Sierra Leone 51.7 +1.2
117 Belize 56.8 +0.1 148 Vietnam 51.7 +0.9
118 Brazil 56.6 -0.3 149 Ethiopia 51.5 +1.5
119 Mali 56.4 +0.9 150 Laos 51.4 +0.2
120 Nigeria 55.6 +1.3 151 Haiti 51.3 +2.4
121 Pakistan 55.6 +0.4 152 Nepal 51.3 +1.2

Repressed

rank country overall change rank country overall change
153 Belarus 49.8 -0.3 166 Central African Republic 45.9 -0.8
154 Micronesia 49.6 -0.2 167 Timor-Leste 45.5 +2.3
155 Lesotho 49.6 +0.1 168 Democratic Republic of Congo 45.0 +4.4
156 Ecuador 49.2 +1.2 169 Argentina 44.1 -0.5
157 Algeria 48.9 -1.9 170 Republic of Congo 42.7 -1.0
158 Angola 47.9 +0.2 171 Iran 41.8 +1.5
159 Solomon Islands 47.0 +0.8 172 Turkmenistan 41.4 -0.8
160 Uzbekistan 47.0 +0.5 173 Equatorial Guinea 40.4 -4.0
161 Burma 46.9 +0.4 174 Eritrea 38.9 +0.4
162 Ukraine 46.9 -2.4 175 Zimbabwe 37.6 +2.1
163 Bolivia 46.8 -1.6 176 Venezuela 34.3 -2.0
164 Kiribati 46.4 +0.1 177 Cuba 29.6 +0.9
165 Chad 45.9 +1.4 178 North Korea 1.3 +0.3

Not Ranked

rank country overall change rank country overall change
N/A Afghanistan N/A N/A N/A Liechtenstein N/A N/A
N/A Iraq N/A N/A N/A Somalia N/A N/A
N/A Kosovo N/A N/A N/A Sudan N/A N/A
N/A Libya N/A N/A N/A Syria N/A N/A

http://www.heritage.org/index/ranking

United States

overall score76.2
world rank12
RULE OF LAW

Property Rights80.0

Freedom From Corruption73.0

LIMITED GOVERNMENT

Government Spending51.8

Fiscal Freedom66.2

REGULATORY EFFICIENCY

Business Freedom88.8

Labor Freedom98.5

Monetary Freedom76.6

OPEN MARKETS

Trade Freedom87.0

Investment Freedom70.0

Financial Freedom70.0

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QUICK FACTS
  • Population:
    • 316.4 million
  • GDP (PPP):
    • $16.8 trillion
    • 1.9% growth
    • 1.2% 5-year compound annual growth
    • $53,101 per capita
  • Unemployment:
    • 7.5%
  • Inflation (CPI):
    • 1.5%
  • FDI Inflow:
    • $187.5 billion

Embed This Data

The United States’ economic freedom score is 76.2, making its economy the 12th freest in the 2015 Index. Its score is 0.7 point higher than last year, with modest gains in six of the 10 economic freedoms, including control of government spending, outweighing a slight decline in business freedom.

Although the precipitous downward spiral in U.S. economic freedom since 2008 has come to a halt in the 2015 Index, a 1.6-point decline in overall economic freedom over the past five years reflects broad-based deteriorations in key policy areas, particularly those related to upholding the rule of law and limited government. Continuing to trail such comparable economies as Australia, New Zealand, Switzerland, and Canada, America has been ranked “mostly free” since 2010.

The anemic post-recession recovery has been characterized by slow growth, high unemployment, a decrease in the number of Americans seeking work, and great uncertainty that has held back investment. Increased tax and regulatory burdens, aggravated by favoritism toward entrenched interests, have undercut America’s historically dynamic entrepreneurial growth.

BACKGROUND

President Barack Obama’s second-term efforts to expand government spending and regulation have been thwarted to some extent by Republican Party opposition in Congress. Economic policy leadership has devolved by default to the Federal Reserve, whose attempts to use monetary policy to stimulate economic activity have not restored robust growth. Implementation of the 2010 health care law, which has reduced competition in most health insurance markets, remains a drag on job creation and full-time employment. Overall, the U.S. economy continues to underperform, despite a private sector–led energy boom that has made the U.S. the world’s largest producer of oil and natural gas. The weak economic recovery and uncertain responses to foreign policy challenges, particularly in the Middle East, in Ukraine, and along the southern U.S. border, have contributed to a loss of support for the President and his party and Republican majorities in both chambers of Congress as a result of 2014 midterm elections.

RULE OF LAWVIEW METHODOLOGY

Corruption in government and the political process remains a concern. High levels of government spending and the expansion and complexity of the government’s regulatory agenda have increased opportunities for political favoritism and cronyism. The judiciary functions independently. Protection of property rights has been uneven, with instances of regulatory overreach by the executive branch requiring court adjudication.

LIMITED GOVERNMENTVIEW METHODOLOGY

The top individual income tax rate is 39.6 percent, and the top corporate tax rate remains among the world’s highest at 35 percent. Other taxes include a capital gains tax and excise taxes. Tax revenue is equal to 24.3 percent of gross domestic product, and government spending is well over one-third of GDP. Public debt exceeds the value of the economy’s annual production.

REGULATORY EFFICIENCYVIEW METHODOLOGY

The regulatory burden has been mounting. Since 2009, over 150 new major regulations have been imposed at an annual cost of more than $70 billion. As of 2014, 125 new regulations were in the pipeline. The labor market, primarily regulated at the state level, remains flexible. Subsidies for agriculture, health care, and renewable energy have bred economic distortions.

OPEN MARKETSVIEW METHODOLOGY

The average tariff rate is 1.5 percent. Tariffs on clothing are high, sugar imports face tariff-rate quotas, and petroleum and liquefied natural gas exports are restricted. Foreign investment in some sectors is capped. The financial market is well developed, but the 2010 Dodd–Frank Act has instituted more federal regulation, socializing the cost of financial risk-taking and increasing the likelihood of future financial crises and bailouts

http://www.heritage.org/index/country/unitedstates

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Part 1 of 3: American People Leaving Both Democratic and Republican Parties In Search of A Party With Principles and Leaders With Integrity and Defenders of The United States Constitution — A New Direction For America — Videos

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Pronk Pops Show 451: April 22, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 450: April 21, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 449: April 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 448: April 17, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 447: April 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 446: April 15, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 445: April 14, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 444: April 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 443: April 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 442: April 8, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 441: April 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 440: April 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 439: April 1, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 438: March 31, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 437: March 30, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 436: March 27, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 435: March 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 434: March 25, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 433: March 24, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 432: March 23, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 431: March 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 430: March 19, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 429: March 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 428: March 17, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 427: March 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 426: March 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 425: March 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 424: March 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 423: February 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 422: February 25, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 421: February 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 420: February 19, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 419: February 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 418: February 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 417: February 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 416: February 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 415: February 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 414: February 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 413: February 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 412: February 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 411: February 5, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 410: February 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 409: February 3, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 408: February 2, 2015

Story 1: American People Leaving Both Democratic and Republican Parties In Search of A Party With Principles and Leaders With Integrity and Defenders of The United States Constitution — A New Direction For America — Videos

Five Finger Death Punch – Wrong Side Of Heaven

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Gallup: Partisan split at historic level

Gallup Poll: Americans Overwhelmingly Want GOP Congress to Set Country’s Agenda, Not Obama

Most Political Independents Ever In USA

How Are Conservative And Liberal Brains Different?

Poll Record High 42 Percent Americans Identify As Independents

Against the USA, Naked Communist Conspiracy Is Unfolding, NWO

1.U.S. acceptance of coexistence as the only alternative to atomic war.
2.U.S. willingness to capitulate in preference to engaging in atomic war.
3.Develop the illusion that total disarmament by the United States would be a demonstration of moral strength.
4.Permit free trade between all nations regardless of Communist affiliation
5.Extension of long-term loans to Russia & satellites.
6.Provide American aid to all nations regardless
7.Grant recognition of Red China. Admission of Red China to the U.N.
8.Set up East and West Germany as separate states under supervision of the U.N.
9.Prolong the conferences to ban atomic tests because the U.S. has agreed to suspend tests as long as negotiations are in progress.
10.Allow all Soviet satellites individual representation in the U.N.
11.Promote the U.N. as the only hope for mankind. Demand that it be set up as a one-world government with its own independent armed forces.
12.Resist any attempt to outlaw the Communist Party.
13.Do away with all loyalty oaths.
14.Continue giving Russia access to the U.S. Patent Office.
15.Capture one or both of the political parties.
16.Use technical decisions of the courts to weaken by claiming their activities violate civil rights.
17.Get control of the schools. Promote Communist propaganda. Soften the curriculum. Get control of teachers’ associations.
18.Gain control of all student newspapers.
19.Use student riots to foment public protests against programs or organizations which are under Communist attack.
20.Infiltrate the press. Get control of book-review assignments, editorial writing, policymaking positions.
21.Gain control of key positions in radio, TV, and motion pictures.
22.Continue discrediting American culture by degrading all forms of artistic expression. “eliminate all good sculpture from parks and buildings, substitute shapeless, awkward and meaningless forms.”
23.Control art critics and directors of art museums.
24.Eliminate all laws governing obscenity by calling them “censorship” and a violation of free speech.
25.Break down cultural standards of morality by promoting pornography and obscenity 26.Present homosexuality, degeneracy and promiscuity as “normal, natural, healthy.”
27.Infiltrate the churches and replace revealed religion with “social” religion. Discredit the Bible as a “religious crutch.”
28.Eliminate prayer or religious expression in the schools
29.Discredit the American Constitution by calling it inadequate, old-fashioned, a hindrance to cooperation between nations on a worldwide basis.
30.Discredit the American Founding Fathers.
31.Belittle all forms of American culture and discourage the teaching of American history
32.Support any socialist movement to give centralized control over any part of the culture; education, social agencies, welfare programs, mental health clinics, etc.
33.Eliminate all laws or procedures which interfere with the operation of communism
34.Eliminate the House Committee on Un-American Activities.
35.Discredit and eventually dismantle the FBI.
36.Infiltrate and gain control of more unions.
37.Infiltrate and gain control of big business.
38.Transfer some of the powers of arrest from the police to social agencies. Treat all behavioral problems as psychiatric disorders which no one but psychiatrists can understand or treat.
39.Dominate the psychiatric profession and use mental health laws as a means of gaining coercive control over those who oppose Communist goals.
40.Discredit the family. Encourage promiscuity, masturbation, easy divorce.
41.Emphasize the need to raise children away from the negative influence of parents. Attribute prejudices, mental blocks and retarding to suppressive influence of parents.
42.Create the impression that violence and insurrection are legitimate aspects of the American tradition; that students and special-interest groups should rise up and use “united force” to solve economic, political or social problems.
43.Overthrow all colonial governments before natives are ready for self-government.
44.Internationalize the Panama Canal.
45.Repeal the Connally reservation so the United States cannot prevent the World Court from seizing jurisdiction over domestic problems and individuals alike.

Mind Control, Psychology of Brainwashing, Sex & Hypnosis

Fit vs. UnFit, Eugenics, Planned Parenthood & Psychology, Mind Control Report

Yuri Bezmenov: Psychological Warfare Subversion & Control of Western Society

The Subversion Factor, Part 1: Moles In High Places

The Subversion Factor, Part 2: The Open Gates of Troy

G. Edward Griffin – The Collectivist Conspiracy

youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jAdu0N1-tvU]

The Quigley Formula – G. Edward Griffin lecture

Robert Welch in 1974 reveals NWO

Robert Welch Speaks: A Touch of Sanity (1965)

Robert Welch Speaks: In One Generation (1974)

CORPORATE FASCISM: The Destruction of America’s Middle Class

CULTURAL MARXISM: The Corruption of America

Countdown to Financial Collapse – A Conversation with G. Edward Griffin

WRCFresnoTV — G. Edward Griffin — The Federal Reserve, Taxes, The I.R.S. & Solutions

Rammstein “We’re all living in America” (HD) English Subtitle

Series Id:           LNS14000000
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Unemployment Rate
Labor force status:  Unemployment rate
Type of data:        Percent or rate
Age:                 16 years and over

Series Id:           LNS13327709
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (seas) Total unemployed, plus all marginally attached workers plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of all civilian labor force plus all marginally attached workers
Labor force status:  Aggregated totals unemployed
Type of data:        Percent or rate
Age:                 16 years and over
Percent/rates:       Unemployed and mrg attached and pt for econ reas as percent of labor force plus marg attached

Series Id:           LNS11300000
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Labor Force Participation Rate
Labor force status:  Civilian labor force participation rate
Type of data:        Percent or rate
Age:                 16 years and over

Series Id:           LNS12000000
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Employment Level
Labor force status:  Employed
Type of data:        Number in thousands
Age:                 16 years and over

Series Id:           LNS13000000
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Unemployment Level
Labor force status:  Unemployed
Type of data:        Number in thousands
Age:                 16 years and over

Series Id:           LNS15000000
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Not in Labor Force
Labor force status:  Not in labor force
Type of data:        Number in thousands
Age:                 16 years and over

WASHINGTON, D.C. — After reaching a more than two-year high in early 2015, Americans’ satisfaction with the direction of the U.S. continues to fall. Twenty-six percent of Americans say they are satisfied with the way things are going in the nation in May, down slightly from 32% in January and February.

Satisfaction With the Direction of the U.S.

The latest data are from Gallup’s May 6-10 poll.

Satisfaction jumped nine points in January to 32%, a promising sign that Americans’ moods were improving after a year of lower figures throughout 2014, ranging between 20% and 27%. Since February, though, satisfaction has dipped only slightly each month, but these small drops have resulted in a six-point decline since the beginning of the year. Satisfaction remains below the 36% historical average for Gallup’s trend dating back to 1979.

The drop in Americans’ satisfaction with the way things are going parallels the recent decline in economic confidence. Americans had a more positive outlook on the economy at the dawn of 2015, but these views, like satisfaction, have edged down in recent months.

Satisfaction With the Direction of the U.S. vs. Economic Confidence

Views of the nation’s direction have certainly been brighter in the past. Majorities of Americans were typically satisfied with the direction of the U.S. between 1998 and mid-2002 — including a record high of 71% in February 1999. But satisfaction declined steadily in the latter half of President George W. Bush’s presidency as the public grew disillusioned with the war in Iraq and the national economy suffered. This dip in satisfaction culminated in 7% of Americans, a record low, saying they were satisfied with the direction of the nation in October 2008 as the global economy collapsed and the U.S. stock market plummeted.

Satisfaction improved significantly during the first year of President Barack Obama’s term — reaching 36% in August 2009. It has not returned to that level since, ranging between 11% and 33% throughout Obama’s time in office.

Americans Still List Economy, Gov’t and Unemployment as Top Problems

Though the 14% of Americans who name dissatisfaction with government, Congress and politicians as the top problem facing the U.S. has fallen five points since April, it still remains the most commonly mentioned problem — a distinction it has held for six months.

The economy in general (12%) and unemployment (10%) have remained at the top of the list for several years. But mentions of these issues are down significantly from their recent peaks — the economy reached a high of 37% in 2012, and unemployment reached a high of 39% in 2011.

Trends in Top

Race relations and racism (8%), immigration (6%), a decline in moral, religious and family ethics (6%), the state of the healthcare system (5%) and terrorism (5%) were also among the most frequently cited problems facing the nation.

Most Commonly Named Problems in April 2015 vs. May 2015

Bottom Line

After years of dysfunctional government, the economy and unemployment dominating Americans’ mentions of the top problem facing the nation, fewer mention these problems now than in recent years. Still, these three problems remain at the forefront of Americans’ concerns, and may be driving Americans’ high level of dissatisfaction with the nation’s direction.

Although Americans’ confidence in the economy is higher this year than in recent years, it is still negative. And while fewer mention dysfunctional government as the nation’s top problem, Americans still strongly disapprove of Congress’ performance and remain divided on Obama’s.

Meanwhile, mentions of unemployment as a top problem have dipped as more U.S. workers report their workplaces are hiring and the unemployment rate as reported by the BLS declines. But unemployment still remains one of the most frequently cited problems.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted May 6-10, 2015, with a random sample of 1,024 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183248/americans-satisfaction-direction-wanes.aspx?utm_source=Politics&utm_medium=newsfeed&utm_campaign=tiles

Trend: Party affiliation in U.S. plus leaners

Story Highlights

  • Congressional job approval at 19%, essentially unchanged
  • Approval of GOP Congress similar among Republicans and Democrats

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congressional job approval, currently at 19%, remains stuck near historical lows, despite a number of recent high-profile legislative achievements.

Congressional Job Approval Ratings: 2001-2015

Over the past month, Congress has confirmed the stalled nomination of Attorney General Loretta Lynch and both chambers passed a bill that was signed into law regarding Medicare. Bills that would authorize limited congressional oversight on any international agreement with Iran and help victims of human trafficking passed the Senate with little or no opposition. The uptick in activity, though hardly historic, is notable compared with the past two Congresses. Those Congresses, marked by divided control of the two chambers, were known for their entrenched partisan gridlock and few legislative accomplishments. And Americans didn’t care for their inability to agree — they gave Congress its lowest approval ever over this time period. Gallup found in June 2013, six months into the previous Congress, that gridlock and ineffectiveness were the most frequently cited reason for Americans’ disapproval of Congress.

Several months into this new Congress, the accomplishments that have been realized could give one the impression that the gridlock is softening, particularly over the past month. But these achievements have had virtually no impact on Congress’s job approval compared with early April (15%).

And, of course, Congress is far from working perfectly now, even if the pace of work appears to have increased. Most dramatically, the Senate failed to overcome a Democratic filibuster Tuesday afternoon that would give the president enhanced authority in negotiating trade bills, though the May survey was conducted before this occurrence. Legislation authorizing the use of military force in Iraq and Syria to fight ISIS, proposed by the administration and which many members of Congress support, remains stalled.

GOP Congress Has Low Approval Among Republicans

A key reason the current 114th Congress appears to be having more legislative success than the two Congresses before it is that the House and Senate are now under one party’s control. Unified GOP control of Capitol Hill should, at least in theory, boost Republicans’ overall approval of Congress. But the expected “Republican rally” for Congress has yet to materialize — 21% of Republicans and Republican leaners approve of Congress, not much different from the 18% of independents and of Democrats who approve. Nor is Republican support notably higher than the 15% it reached in 2014, despite the decided Republican tilt of this year’s legislature.

Congressional Job Approval, by Party Identification, May 2015

Bottom Line

After years of dysfunction, Congress is moving forward on key pieces of legislation. No longer shackled by split control — though still facing a president of the opposite party — the legislative branch is suddenly finding some areas of agreement. But even if it appears that the gridlock is easing, the overwhelming majority of Americans still disapprove of Congress. If Congress continues passing bipartisan legislation, more Americans might soften their stance. Still, it may be that Americans are largely not aware of or impressed by Congress’ recent legislative successes. Or it may be that the hit to Congress’ reputation over the last several years — evident not only in dismal job approval ratings, but also fallinglevels of trust and confidence — will take a long time to reverse.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted May 6-10, 2015, with a random sample of 1,024 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183128/five-months-gop-congress-approval-remains-low.aspx?utm_source=Politics&utm_medium=newsfeed&utm_campaign=tiles

Story Highlights

  • 31% say they are socially liberal, 31% socially conservative
  • This is the first time conservatives have not outnumbered liberals
  • Conservatives maintain edge on economic issues

PRINCETON, N.J. — Thirty-one percent of Americans describe their views on social issues as generally liberal, matching the percentage who identify as social conservatives for the first time in Gallup records dating back to 1999.

Trend: Americans' Self-Description of Views on Social Issues

Gallup first asked Americans to describe their views on social issues in 1999, and has repeated the question at least annually since 2001. The broad trend has been toward a shrinking conservative advantage, although that was temporarily interrupted during the first two years of Barack Obama’s presidency. Since then, the conservative advantage continued to diminish until it was wiped out this year.

The newfound parity on social ideology is a result of changes in the way both Democrats and Republicans describe their social views. The May 6-10 Gallup poll finds a new high of 53% of Democrats, including Democratic-leaning independents, describing their views on social issues as liberal.

Trend: Ideological Identification on Social Issues, Democrats and Democratic Leaners, 2001-2015

Democrats were more likely to describe their views on social issues as moderate rather than liberal from 2001 to 2005. Since then, socially liberal Democrats have outnumbered socially moderate Democrats in all but one year.

Meanwhile, the 53% of Republicans and Republican leaners saying their views on social issues are conservative is the lowest in Gallup’s trend. The drop in Republicans’ self-identified social conservatism has been accompanied by an increase in moderate identification, to 34%, while the percentage identifying as socially liberal has been static near 10%.

Trend: Ideological Identification on Social Issues, Republicans and Republican Leaners, 2001-2015

These trends echo the pattern in Gallup’s overall ideology measure, which dates back to 1992 and shows increasing liberal identification in recent years. As with the social ideology measure, the longer-term shifts are mainly a result of increasing numbers of Democrats describing their views as liberal rather than moderate. That may reflect Democrats feeling more comfortable in describing themselves as liberal than they were in the past, as much as a more leftward shift in Democrats’ attitudes on political, economic and social issues.

Conservatives Still Lead Liberals on Economic Issues

In contrast to the way Americans describe their views on social issues, they still by a wide margin, 39% to 19%, describe their views on economic issues as conservative rather than liberal. However, as on social ideology, the gap between conservatives and liberals has been shrinking and is lower today than at any point since 1999, with the 39% saying they are economically conservative the lowest to date.

Trend: Americans' Self-Description of Views on Economic Issues

Currently, 64% of Republicans identify as conservative economically, which is down from 70% the previous two years and roughly 75% in the early years of the Obama presidency. During George W. Bush’s administration, Republicans were less likely to say they were economic conservatives, with as few as 58% doing so in 2004 and 2005. The trends suggest Republicans’ willingness to identify as economic conservatives, or economic moderates, is influenced by the party of the president in office, and perhaps the types of financial policies the presidential administration is pursuing at the time.

Trend: Ideological Identification on Economic Issues, Republicans and Republican Leaners, 2001-2015

Democrats are also contributing to the trend in lower economic conservative identification. While the plurality of Democrats have consistently said they are economically moderate, Democrats have been more likely to identify as economic liberals than as economic conservatives since 2007. The last two years, there has been a 15-percentage-point gap in liberal versus conservative identification among Democrats on economic matters.

Trend: Ideological Identification on Economic Issues, Democrats and Democratic Leaners, 2001-2015

Implications

Americans’ growing social liberalism is evident not only in how they describe their views on social issues but also in changes in specific attitudes, such as increased support for same-sex marriage and legalizing marijuana. These longer-term trends may be attributable to changing attitudes among Americans of all ages, but they also may be a result of population changes, with younger, more liberal Americans entering adulthood while older, more conservative adults pass on. Gallup found evidence that population replacement is a factor in explaining changes in overall ideology using an analysis of birth cohorts over time.

The 2016 presidential election will thus be contested in a more socially liberal electorate — and a less economically conservative one — than was true of prior elections. Economically and socially conservative candidates may still appeal to the Republican Party base in the primaries, but it may be more important now than in the past for the GOP nominee to be a bit less conservative on social issues in order to appeal to the broader general electorate.

And while Americans are less economically conservative than in the past, economic conservatives still outnumber economic liberals by about 2-to-1. As a result, Democrats must be careful not to nominate a candidate who is viewed as too liberal on economic matters if their party hopes to hold the White House beyond 2016.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted May 6-10, 2015, with a random sample of 1,024 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183386/social-ideology-left-catches-right.aspx?utm_source=Politics&utm_medium=newsfeed&utm_campaign=tiles

AGAINST THE GRAIN
Democrats’ Vanishing Future

Hillary Clinton is not the only Democratic comeback candidate on the 2016 ticket. Senate Democrats are betting on the past to rebuild their party for the future.

BY JOSH KRAUSHAAR

One of the most underappreciated stories in recent years is the deterioration of the Democratic bench under President Obama’s tenure in office. The party has become much more ideologically homogenous, losing most of its moderate wing as a result of the last two disastrous midterm elections. By one new catch-all measure, a party-strength index introduced by RealClearPolitics analysts Sean Trende and David Byler, Democrats are in their worst position since 1928. That dynamic has manifested itself in the Democratic presidential contest, where the bench is so barren that a flawed Hillary Clinton is barreling to an uncontested nomination.

But less attention has been paid to how the shrinking number of Democratic officeholders in the House and in statewide offices is affecting the party’s Senate races. It’s awfully unusual to see how dependent Democrats are in relying on former losing candidates as their standard-bearers in 2016. Wisconsin’s Russ Feingold, Pennsylvania’s Joe Sestak, Indiana’s Baron Hill, and Ohio’s Ted Strickland all ran underwhelming campaigns in losing office in 2010—and are looking to return to politics six years later. Party officials are courting former Sen. Kay Hagan of North Carolina to make a comeback bid, despite mediocre favorability ratings and the fact that she lost a race just months ago that most had expected her to win. All told, more than half of the Democrats’ Senate challengers in 2016 are comeback candidates.

On one hand, most of these candidates are the best choices Democrats have. Feingold and Strickland are running ahead of GOP Sens. Ron Johnson and Rob Portman in recent polls. Hill and Hagan boast proven crossover appeal in GOP-leaning states that would be challenging pickups. Their presence in the race gives the party a fighting chance to retake the Senate.

(RELATED: What’s Next In the House Benghazi Committee’s Hillary Clinton Investigation)

But look more closely, and the reliance on former failures is a direct result of the party having no one else to turn to. If the brand-name challengers didn’t run, the roster of up-and-coming prospects in the respective states is short. They’re also facing an ominous historical reality that only two defeated senators have successfully returned to the upper chamber in the last six decades. As political analyst Stu Rothenberg put it, they’re asking “voters to rehire them for a job from which they were fired.” Senate Democrats are relying on these repeat candidates for the exact same reason that Democrats are comfortable with anointing Hillary Clinton for their presidential nomination: There aren’t any better alternatives.

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For a portrait of the Democrats’ slim pickings, just look at the political breakdown in three of the most consequential battleground states. Republicans hold 12 of Ohio’s 16 House seats, and all six of their statewide offices. In Wisconsin, Republicans hold a majority of the state’s eight House seats and four of five statewide partisan offices. In Pennsylvania, 13 of the 18 representatives are Republicans, though Democrats hold all the statewide offices. (One major caveat: Kathleen Kane, the Democrats’ once-hyped attorney general in the state, is under criminal investigation and has become a political punchline.) These are all Democratic-friendly states that Obama carried twice.

If Strickland didn’t run, the party’s hopes against Portman would lie in the hands of 30-year-old Cincinnati Councilman P.G. Sittenfeld, who would make unexpected history as one of the nation’s youngest senators with a victory. (Sittenfeld is still mounting a long-shot primary campaign against Strickland.) Without Feingold in Wisconsin, the party’s only logical option would be Rep. Ron Kind, who has regularly passed up opportunities for a promotion. Former Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett already lost to Gov. Scott Walker twice, and businesswoman Mary Burke disappointed as a first-time gubernatorial candidate last year. And despite the Democratic establishment’s publicized carping over Joe Sestak in Pennsylvania, the list of alternatives is equally underwhelming: His only current intra-party opposition is from the mayor of Allentown.

(RELATED: Hillary Clinton to Launch Her Campaign, Again)

In the more conservative states, the drop-off between favored recruits and alternatives is even more stark. Hagan would be a flawed nominee in North Carolina, but there’s no one else waiting in the wings. The strongest Democratic politician, Attorney General Roy Cooper, is running for governor instead. And in Indiana, the bench is so thin that even the GOP’s embattled governor, Mike Pence, isn’t facing formidable opposition. Hill, who lost congressional reelection campaigns in both 2004 and 2010, is not expected to face serious primary competition in the race to succeed retiring GOP Sen. Dan Coats.

Even in the two swing states where the party landed young, up-and-coming recruits to run, their options were awfully limited. In Florida, 32-year-old Rep. Patrick Murphy is one of only five House Democrats to represent a district that Mitt Romney carried in 2012—and his centrism has made him one of the most compelling candidates for higher office. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee quickly rallied behind his campaign (in part to squelch potential opposition from firebrand congressman Alan Grayson). But if Murphy didn’t run, the alternatives would have been limited: freshman Rep. Gwen Graham and polarizing Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz being the most logical alternatives.

In Nevada, Democrats boast one of their strongest challengers in former state Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, vying to become the first Latina ever elected to the Senate. But her ascension is due, in part, to the fact that other talented officeholders lost in the 2014 statewide wipeout. Democratic lieutenant-governor nominee Lucy Flores, hyped by MSNBC as a “potential superstar,” lost by 26 points to her GOP opponent. Former Secretary of State Ross Miller, another fast-rising pol, badly lost his bid for attorney general against a nondescript Republican. By simply taking a break from politics, Cortez Masto avoided the wave and kept her prospects alive for 2016.

(RELATED: Newly Released Clinton Email Detail Benghazi Correspondence)

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This isn’t an assessment of Democratic chances for a Senate majority in 2017; it’s a glaring warning for the party’s longer-term health. If Clinton can’t extend the Democrats’ presidential winning streak—a fundamental challenge, regardless of the political environment—the party’s barren bench will cause even more alarm for the next presidential campaign. And if the Democrats’ core constituencies don’t show up for midterm elections—an outlook that’s rapidly becoming conventional wisdom—Democrats have serious challenges in 2018 as well. It’s why The New Yorker’s liberal writer John Cassidy warned that a Clinton loss next year could “assign [Republicans] a position of dominance.”

By focusing on how the electorate’s rapid change would hand Democrats a clear advantage in presidential races, Obama’s advisers overlooked how the base-stroking moves would play in the states. Their optimistic view of the future has been adopted by Clinton, who has been running to the left even without serious primary competition.

But without a future generation of leaders able to compellingly carry the liberal message, there’s little guarantee that changing demographics will secure the party’s destiny. The irony of the 2016 Senate races is that Democrats are betting on the past, running veteran politicians to win them back the majority—with Clinton at the top of the ticket. If that formula doesn’t work, the rebuilding process will be long and arduous.

http://www.nationaljournal.com/against-the-grain/democrats-vanishing-future-20150521

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Tea Party Traitor and Neoconservative Republican Poster Boy Marco Rubio Running For President in 2016 and For Government Intervention In The Middle East — Courts Mitt Romney Endorsement — Kiss of Death — Video

Posted on April 13, 2015. Filed under: American History, Articles, Banking, Blogroll, Business, Catholic Church, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Climate, College, Communications, Constitution, Corruption, Crisis, Diasters, Documentary, Drones, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, Ethic Cleansing, European History, Faith, Family, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Food, Foreign Policy, Freedom, government, government spending, Health Care, history, Illegal, Immigration, Investments, IRS, Islam, Law, Legal, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Middle East, Missiles, Monetary Policy, Money, Money, National Security Agency (NSA_, Natural Gas, Natural Gas, Nuclear, Nuclear Power, Obamacare, Oil, Oil, People, Philosophy, Politics, Press, Psychology, Radio, Radio, Rants, Raves, Religion, Resources, Security, Strategy, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Taxes, Terrorism, Unemployment, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Welfare, Wisdom, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 444: April 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 443: April 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 442: April 8, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 441: April 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 440: April 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 439: April 1, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 438: March 31, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 437: March 30, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 436: March 27, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 435: March 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 434: March 25, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 433: March 24, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 432: March 23, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 431: March 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 430: March 19, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 429: March 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 428: March 17, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 427: March 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 426: March 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 425: March 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 424: March 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 423: February 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 422: February 25, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 421: February 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 420: February 19, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 419: February 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 418: February 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 417: February 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 416: February 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 415: February 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 414: February 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 413: February 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 412: February 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 411: February 5, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 410: February 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 409: February 3, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 408: February 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 407: January 30, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 406: January 29, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 405: January 28, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 404: January 27, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 403: January 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 402: January 23, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 401: January 22, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 400: January 21, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 399: January 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 398: January 15, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 397: January 14, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 396: January 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 395: January 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 394: January 7, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 393: January 5, 2015

Story 2: Tea Party Traitor and Neoconservative Republican Poster Boy Marco Rubio Running For President in 2016 and For Government Intervention In The Middle East —  Courts Mitt Romney Endorsement — Kiss of Death — Video

marco rubio cartoonrubiorubio immigrationrubio cartoon immigrationrubio cartoon 2marco-rubio immigration Rubio puppet
rubio-immigration-cartoon

Sen. Marco Rubio announces presidential run

Sen. Marco Rubio Announces 2016 Presidential Bid • 4/13/15 •

Marco Rubio Announces 2016 Presidential Bid

Sen Marco Rubio announces presidential bid

Michelle Malkin calls out Marco Rubio for “posing as a Tea Party spokesman”

Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz fight on the Senate floor

Laura Ingraham Confronts Marco Rubio Over Immigration Reform: ‘Stop Dividing The Republican Party’

Ann Coulter blasts immigration bill, Rubio – Rubio is the Jack Kevorkian of the Republican Party

Ann Coulter trashes Marco Rubio

Brit Hume and Laura Ingraham argue about Marco Rubio

Mark Levin grills Marco Rubio on immigration proposal

A Conversation with Senator Marco Rubio

Marco Rubio (American Neocon) on Iran “No option should be off the table”

Marco Rubio Is a Polished Performer, but He’s Out of Position

Why You Should NOT Vote For Marco Rubio In 2016

Marco Rubio Grills Hillary Clinton About Benghazi (Testimony)

Mark Levin: “I despise the neocons! I am not a neocon!”

Neoconservatism: An Obituary for an Idea (Cato Institute Book Forum, 2011)

Congressman Ron Paul, MD – We’ve Been NeoConned

Rubio jumps into White House race with jab at Hillary Clinton

 

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) on Monday entered the race for the White House, telling donors on a conference call that he is “uniquely qualified” to lead the Republican Party into battle against Hillary Clinton in 2016.

“I feel uniquely qualified to not just make that argument, but to outline the policies that we need to have in order to achieve it,” Rubio told the donors, according to The Associated Press.

Portraying Clinton as a candidate of the past, Rubio, 43, talked about the opportunity awaiting the GOP as it seeks to recapture the White House after eight years out of power.

“The Republican Party, for the first time in a long time, has a chance in this election to be the party of the future,” Rubio said on the call.

“Just yesterday, we heard from a leader from yesterday who wants to take us back to yesterday, but I feel that this country has always been about tomorrow.”

Rubio is expected to officially launch his candidacy Monday evening in Miami against the backdrop of the Freedom Tower, a setting that will give him a chance to tout his heritage as the son of Cuban parents who fled to America in the 1950s.

The Florida senator, who is serving in only his first term, is entering an increasingly crowded GOP field that already includes Sens. Ted Cruz (Texas) and Rand Paul (Ky.). A host of other candidates are waiting in the wings, including Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

It had long been thought that Rubio would not run for the White House against Bush, given their personal history and shared base of support in the Florida Republican Party.

But much like Obama in 2008, Rubio appears willing to gamble his political future on the notion that his party will be looking for a fresh face, particularly given the GOP’s difficulty in attracting minority voters in the last two presidential elections.

If elected, Rubio would become the first Hispanic president in American history.

Rubio told ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos in an interview Monday that he believes he’s “absolutely” the best candidate for the Oval Office.

“I think the 21st century can be the American century, and I believe that I can lead this country in that direction,” he said.

Rubio is trying to generate buzz for his presidential campaign the day after Clinton jumped into the race with an online video where she declared her desire to be the “champion” of “everyday Americans.”

While Clinton’s rollout could overshadow Rubio’s, it could also play to his advantage by allowing him to draw a contrast with the former secretary of State, who has been a presence on the national stage for nearly three decades.

Thus far in the race, Rubio is polling outside the top tier of Republicans hopefuls.

But Rubio, a staunch conservative who was deemed a rising star after his election victory in 2010, is very well liked among Republican voters. Recent numbers from Democratic Public Policy Polling found that 55 percent had a favorable view of him, the highest of any potential GOP candidate.

Still, in order to win the nomination, Rubio will have to assure conservatives who were turned off by his involvement in the Senate’s failed immigration reform effort in 2013.

Rubio helped write a bill with Democrats that passed the Senate but died in the House after an outpouring of conservative opposition.

He has tried to make amends for his role crafting that bill, telling activists in February that he’s “learned” from the experience that securing the border must come first.

“You can’t just tell people you’re going to secure the border. … You have to do that, they have to see it, they have to see it working, and then they’re going to have a reasonable conversation with you about the other parts, but they’re not going to even want to talk about that until that’s done first,” he said at the Conservative Political Action Conference.

Rubio is expected to make foreign policy one of the centerpieces of his campaign, and has emerged as one of the most vocal critics of Obama’s move to normalize diplomatic relations with Cuba.

Following his campaign launch, Rubio will return to Washington for Senate business, including a high-profile Foreign Relations Committee hearing on Iran.

On Friday, he’ll head to New Hampshire for a full day of campaigning in the critical primary state.

http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/presidential-races/238595-report-rubio-announces-candidacy

Mitt Romney warms to Marco Rubio as young senator cultivates relationship

By Robert Costa and Philip Rucker

Sen. Marco Rubio has been cultivating a relationship with Mitt Romney and his intimates, landing some of the 2012 Republican nominee’s top advisers and donors and persistently courting others as he readies an expected 2016 presidential campaign.

In a crowded field of contenders, the imprimatur of Romney could help clear Rubio’s path into the top tier. Since Romney announced in January that he would not run for the White House again, he and Rubio have had at least two lengthy phone calls in which Romney encouraged and mentored the 43-year-old Florida senator about the political landscape, according to a Romney associate.

[ Rubio is the ‘upside’ candidate of 2016 ]

Rubio and Romney have built a warm and trusting rapport, in contrast to the frostiness that exists between Romney and the two current GOP front-runners, former Florida governor Jeb Bush and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. When Romney said in January that it was time to turn to the “next generation of Republican leaders,” it was widely interpreted as a swipe at Bush and a boost to a fresher face, such as Rubio.

In one-on-one meetings and communications with members of Romney’s inner circle, Rubio has impressed them with what they see as his compelling personal story, his depth and positions on policies, and his respect for Romney and his legacy in the Republican Party.

For Rubio, winning over key elements of the Romney ­coalition could give him a stronger foundation for a competitive campaign. But the support from Romney’s team alone would not guarantee Rubio success against Bush’s well-funded juggernaut or Walker’s grass-roots appeal.

Rubio has signed up two prominent former Romney officials in recent weeks. Rich Beeson, Romney’s 2012 national political director, has been tapped as Rubio’s likely deputy campaign manager, while Jim Merrill, Romney’s longtime New Hampshire strategist, is on board to play the same role for Rubio.

“For me, his substance, his skill and his story really stuck out,” Merrill said. “I always said if Mitt had decided to run again, I’d be with him. But when he decided not to go, I took a careful look at the field, and Marco represents the next generation of Republican leadership.”

Rubio’s courtship has been particularly intense with Spencer Zwick, who served as national finance chairman of Romney’s $1 billion campaign and is seen as the keeper of the Romney flame. Zwick said in an interview that the senator solicits advice from him regularly in phone calls, e-mails and text messages.

Rubio asks Zwick about how to assemble a campaign infrastructure and win the nomination, about lessons learned from Romney’s 2012 loss. Both fathers of young children, the two men talk about their families, too.

Zwick said he remains unaffiliated in the 2016 sweepstakes, but heaped praise on Rubio.

“Have you watched him speak?” Zwick asked. “This guy gives a message about the American dream that is compelling. People can say, ‘Oh, it’s the same speech every time,’ but you know what? Ronald Reagan did that, too, and it happened to work.”

Zwick called Rubio “an astute politician and a genuine person,” saying he “is universally well-liked by donors.”

Still, Bush has established himself early as the 2016 field’s fundraising dynamo, signing up many of Romney’s biggest bundlers, especially in New York and Florida, where he threatens to squeeze Rubio out.

A handful of former senior Romney aides and advisers have fanned out to work for an array of likely candidates besides Rubio, including Bush, Walker, former Texas governor Rick Perry, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

The biggest Romney fundraiser helping Rubio is Wayne Berman, a fixture in GOP fundraising circles and a co-chairman of Romney’s 2012 national finance committee. Many Romney loyalists — including friends and associates from Bain Capital, the Mormon Church or the Salt Lake City Olympics — have stayed unaffiliated and are looking for signals of Romney’s preference.

Romney is unlikely to endorse a candidate anytime soon and has invited most of the GOP 2016 field to his annual policy summit with top donors and business leaders in June in Park City, Utah, where Romney has a home.

Rubio also has roots in the Mountain West. Although he was born into the Catholic Church, Rubio lived for several years of his childhood in Las Vegas and, during that time, was baptized in the Mormon Church. In his teen years, he and his family returned to Florida and rejoined the Catholic Church, although many of Rubio’s cousins remain affiliated with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Some Romney loyalists harbor bad feelings about several candidates. Privately, they say Bush was not as active in his support as they expected in 2012 and that they think he tried to muscle Romney out of the 2016 race in January.

They hold a grudge against Walker for sharply criticizing Romney in his 2013 book, “Unintimidated,” for doing “a lousy job” connecting with voters. And many Romney insiders were steamed at Christie for his high-profile embrace of President Obama, after Hurricane Sandy devastated the Jersey Shore in the final week of the campaign.

By contrast, Romney’s allies almost universally praise Rubio, who was vetted as a possible vice-presidential pick and worked on Romney’s behalf during the campaign. They singled out his prime-time speech — introducing Romney — at the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa.

“He was an exceptional surrogate,” said Matt Waldrip, a former Romney finance aide and Zwick associate. “When he went to events, people showed up. He packed the house, whether fundraising or otherwise. He did whatever we asked him to,
clearly interested in helping the cause and helping the ticket.”

On Tuesday, Rubio met at the Russell Senate Office Building in Washington for an hour with Lanhee Chen, Romney’s former policy director, who remains an adviser and friend. Chen said he was impressed by Rubio’s preparation for the meeting, which focused on foreign and domestic policy, as well as his depth on the issues.

“Senator Rubio has spent the last several years developing thoughtful conservative policy solutions, and he has a personal story that makes those solutions even more compelling,” Chen said.

Rubio’s camp has been in touch with other Romney associates, includingPeter Flaherty, a former Boston prosecutor who for years was Romney’s chief liaison to conservative movement leaders. Those talks have been informal, and Flaherty, like Chen and Zwick, remains uncommitted to a 2016 candidate.

“It’s elbow grease,” said one Romney confidant who spoke on the condition of anonymity to talk candidly about Rubio’s outreach. “Marco’s actually picking up the phone and calling people, saying, ‘Listen, I want to introduce myself and tell you who I am and what I stand for.’ It’s good politics.”

Terry Sullivan — who ran Romney’s South Carolina primary campaign in 2008 and for years has been a top Rubio adviser — has been helping him facilitate his outreach into Romney’s world. Sullivan is executive director of Rubio’s Reclaim America PAC and is his likely campaign manager. Rubio’s Senate chief of staff, Alberto Martinez, was a Florida-based adviser to Romney’s campaign in 2012.

Rubio is expected to formally launch his presidential bid next month, although aides stressed this week that no final decision has been made on the timing or venue. His advisers are preparing for a long and steady race, with a focus on laying the groundwork in the early-voting states.

Although he has been overshadowed recently by Bush and Walker, Rubio has generated some buzz among Republican insiders. His speeches at recent donor conclaves, including at the Club for Growth last month in Palm Beach, Fla., drew rave reviews.

Rubio has said he can raise the funds needed to mount a serious presidential bid. Norman Braman, a billionaire South Florida auto dealer, is expected to donate as much as $10 million to Rubio and his anticipated super PAC.

Rubio has his own national donor network, which he began cultivating in his upstart 2010 Senate campaign. The group includes donors who participate in the political network organized by industrialists Charles and David Koch, whose California meeting Rubio addressed in January.

But Rubio is making inroads elsewhere, too. He dined alone last week in Washington with Sheldon Adelson, the billionaire Las Vegas casino magnate who spent tens of millions of dollars trying to elect Romney in 2012.

Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), who was Romney’s liaison on Capitol Hill in 2012, recently explained why so many Republican insiders find Rubio appealing.

“I often have a vision of Marco in the cloakroom of the Senate, when not much is going on, trying to watch his son’s football games on his smartphone,” he said.

Blunt then used a descriptor that few would have applied to Romney: “humanizing.”

The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts Portfolio

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Show 439-444

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Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Show 414-421

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It Is Time For A New Different Kind of President? Neither Democrat Nor Republican! — An Independent Constitutionalist — The Longer Senator Rand Paul Stays In Washington He Becomes More An Establishment Republican On Key Issues — Big Government Conservative Not Limited Government Libertarian — The Co-opting of Rand Paul — Videos

Posted on April 10, 2015. Filed under: American History, Articles, Babies, Banking, Blogroll, British History, Business, College, Communications, Constitution, Corruption, Crime, Crisis, Culture, Documentary, Drug Cartels, Economics, Education, Employment, European History, Faith, Family, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Fraud, Freedom, Friends, government, government spending, Health Care, history, Homicide, Illegal, Immigration, IRS, Law, Legal, liberty, Life, Links, media, Monetary Policy, Money, Money, National Security Agency (NSA_, Nuclear, Obamacare, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Press, Psychology, Radio, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Strategy, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Taxes, Terrorism, Unemployment, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Welfare, Wisdom, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 441: April 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 440: April 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 439: April 1, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 438: March 31, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 437: March 30, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 436: March 27, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 435: March 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 434: March 25, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 433: March 24, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 432: March 23, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 431: March 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 430: March 19, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 429: March 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 428: March 17, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 427: March 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 426: March 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 425: March 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 424: March 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 423: February 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 422: February 25, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 421: February 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 420: February 19, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 419: February 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 418: February 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 417: February 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 416: February 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 415: February 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 414: February 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 413: February 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 412: February 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 411: February 5, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 410: February 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 409: February 3, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 408: February 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 407: January 30, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 406: January 29, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 405: January 28, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 404: January 27, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 403: January 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 402: January 23, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 401: January 22, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 400: January 21, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 399: January 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 398: January 15, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 397: January 14, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 396: January 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 395: January 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 394: January 7, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 393: January 5, 2015

Story 1: It Is Time For A New Different Kind of President? Neither Democrat Nor Republican! — An Independent Constitutionalist — The Longer Senator Rand Paul Stays In Washington He Becomes More An Establishment Republican On Key Issues — Big Government Conservative Not Limited Government Libertarian — The Co-opting of Rand Paul — Videos

Polling Data

Poll Date Bush Walker Cruz Paul Huckabee Carson Rubio Christie Perry Santorum Jindal Kasich Spread
RCP Average 2/26 – 3/31 16.8 16.2 8.7 8.7 8.7 8.7 6.5 6.0 2.5 1.8 1.5 1.3 Bush +0.6
FOX News 3/29 – 3/31 12 15 10 9 10 11 8 4 3 2 2 1 Walker +3
ABC/Wash Post 3/26 – 3/29 21 13 12 8 8 6 8 7 1 2 1 1 Bush +8
PPP (D) 3/26 – 3/31 17 20 16 10 6 10 6 4 3 Walker +3
CNN/ORC 3/13 – 3/15 16 13 4 12 10 9 7 7 4 1 1 2 Bush +3
McClatchy/Marist 3/1 – 3/4 19 18 4 7 10 9 5 6 3 2 Bush +1
Quinnipiac 2/26 – 3/2 16 18 6 6 8 7 5 8 1 2 2 1 Walker +2

All 2016 Republican Presidential Nomination Polling Data

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2016/president/us/2016_republican_presidential_nomination-3823.html

Rand Paul 2016 Speech – Senator Rand Paul Announces Running For U.S. President |FULL SPEECH

Rand Paul in 2016?

RAND PAUL Explains LIBERTARIANISM

Rand Paul: Ted Cruz’s Audience Was Required To Attend, I’m Not Interested In Throwing Out Red Meat

“A Different Kind of Republican Leader”

Rand Paul 2016 Campaign Promises

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Questions – Immigration Update – April 1-2, 2015

Most Voters Want More Aggressive Deportation Policies
See Toplines
See Crosstabs
Platinum Page

National Survey of 1,000 Likely Voters
Conducted April 1-2, 2015
By Rasmussen Reports

1* Is the U.S. government too aggressive or not aggressive enough in deporting those who are in this country illegally? Or is the number of deportations about right?

2* Suppose a woman enters the United States as an illegal alien and gives birth to a child in the United States. Should that child automatically become a citizen of the United States?

3* Should illegal immigrants who have American-born children be exempt from deportation?

4* Before anyone receives local, state or federal government services, should they be required to prove they are legally allowed to be in the United States?

5* How concerned are you that efforts to identify and deport illegal immigrants will also end up violating the civil rights of some U.S. citizens?

NOTE: Margin of Sampling Error, +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/questions/pt_survey_questions/april_2015/questions_immigration_update_april_1_2_2015

Immigration

Most Voters Want More Aggressive Deportation Policies

More voters than ever feel the United States is not aggressive enough in deporting those who are here illegally, even as President Obama continues to push his plan to make up to five million illegal immigrants safe from deportation.

Just 16% of Likely U.S. Voters think the U.S. government is too aggressive in deporting those who are in the country illegally. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 62% believe the government is not aggressive enough in deporting these illegal immigrants, up from 52% a year ago and 56%in November. Fifteen percent (15%) feel the current number of deportations is about right. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Thirty-two percent (32%) believe illegal immigrants who have American-born children should be exempt from deportation, an element of Obama’s plan, but 51% now disagree. In November, voters were much more closely divided: 38% said they should be exempt from deportation, and only 42% disagreed. Seventeen  percent (17%) remain undecided.

But then most voters (54%) continue to feel that a child born to an illegal immigrant mother in the United States should not automatically become a U.S. citizen, as is now the case.  Thirty-eight percent (38%) favor the current policy of automatic citizenship for these children. Opposition has ranged from 51% to 65% in surveys since April 2006. Support has been in the 28% to 41% range in that same period.

An overwhelming 83% of voters think someone should be required to prove they are legally allowed in the United States before receiving local, state or federal government services. Just 12% disagree. These findings have changed little over the past four years.

Still, 54% are concerned that efforts to identify and deport illegal immigrants will also end up violating the civil rights of some U.S. citizens. Forty-three percent (43%) don’t have that concern. This includes 25% who are Very Concerned about possible civil rights violations and 12% who are Not at All Concerned. This, too, is consistent with past surveying.

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it’s in the news, it’s in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on April 1-2, 2015 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Most voters continue to believe federal government policies encourage illegal immigration.

Most voters in nearly every demographic category agree that the federal government is not aggressive enough in its deportation policies. Most also believe very strongly that someone should have to prove they are a U.S. citizen before obtaining government benefits.

Most women and men agree that a child born to an illegal immigrant in this country should not automatically become a U.S. citizen.

Voters under 40 are only slightly less supportive than their elders of more aggressive deportation policies. But they are much more likely than those 40 and over to think that a child born to an illegal alien in this country should automatically become a U.S. citizen.

Sixty percent (60%) of whites oppose automatic citizenship; 51% of blacks and 56% of other minority voters favor it.

Eighty-one percent (81%) of Republicans and 68% of voters not affiliated with either major party think the government is not aggressive enough in deporting illegal immigrants. Just 40% of Democrats agree. But then Democrats are far more concerned than the others that deportation efforts may end up violating the civil rights of some U.S. citizens.

Democrats by a 51% to 33% margin believe illegals who have American-born children should be exempt from deportation. Sixty-two percent (62%) of GOP voters and 60% of unaffiliateds disagree.

Most voters continue to believe that securing the border is more important than legalizing the status of undocumented workers already here and think plans to offer legal status to such individuals will just encourage more illegal immigration.

More than half of voters remain opposed to Obama’s new plan that will allow nearly five million illegal immigrants to remain in this country legally and apply for jobs. Forty-seven percent (47%) think Congress should try to find ways to stop the president’s plan, while 41% believe Congress should allow this decision to stand.

Voters also continue to strongly support voter ID laws and don’t consider them discriminatory.

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only.

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/current_events/immigration/immigration

Voters Still Fault Feds For Illegal Immigration

Most voters continue to believe federal government policies encourage illegal immigration, but they still aren’t convinced states should go it alone in enforcing immigration laws.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 57% of Likely U.S. Voters think the policies and practices of the federal government encourage people to enter the United States illegally, the highest level of cynicism since June 2012. Twenty-eight percent (28%) disagree, while 15% are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

The number of voters who believe the federal government encourages illegal immigration reached a high of 62% in September 2010 but has mostly stayed in the mid-to high-50s in regular surveying for several years.

Still, 48% think relying on the federal government rather than states to enforce immigration laws is the best approach to dealing with illegal immigration. That’s down two points from last August  but is in line with findings since February 2011. Forty-two percent (42%) think it’s better to allow individual states to act on their own. Ten percent (10%) are undecided. Support for state action was slightly higher in 2011.

Most voters (61%) still favor strict government sanctions on employers who hire illegal immigrants. Twenty-four percent (24%) oppose such sanctions, while 15% are undecided. Support for these sanctions have run in the high 50s to low 60s for years, and Americans told us in a 2013 survey that employer sanctions are the most effective way to stop illegal immigration.

Voters remain more conflicted when it comes to landlords who rent or sell property to illegal immigrants. Forty-four percent (44%) favor strict government sanctions against them. Thirty-four percent (34%) are opposed, while 22% are undecided. These attitudes haven’t changed much over the years either.

But 57% believe if a police officer pulls someone over for a traffic violation, the officer should automatically check to see if that person is in the country legally. Thirty-three percent (33%) disagree, and 10% are not sure. These findings also have stayed fairly steady for years, although support for these checks hit a high of 73% in March 2009.

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it’s in the news, it’s in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on March 4-5, 2015 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Most voters continue to believe that securing the border is more important than legalizing the status of undocumented workers already here and think plans to offer legal status to such individuals will just encourage more illegal immigration.

Seventy-five percent (75%) of Republicans and 59% of voters not affiliated with either major political party believe the policies and practices of the federal government encourage illegal immigration. Democrats by a narrow 44% to 39% disagree. Most Republicans (62%) and unaffiliated voters by a 46% to 42% margin think states should be allowed to enforce immigration laws on their own, but 68% of Democrats think they should rely on the feds.

Sixty percent (60%) of voters who believe government policies encourage people to come here illegally favor allowing states to act on their own to enforce immigration laws. Seventy-eight percent (78%) of those who don’t believe government policies encourage illegal immigration think enforcement of such laws should be left to the federal government.

White voters are generally more supportive of strict sanctions against employers who hire illegal immigrants and landlords who rent or sell property to such individuals than black and other minority voters are. White voters also show stronger support for automatic police checks during traffic stops.

More than half of all voters remain opposed to President Obama’s new plan that will allow nearly five million illegal immigrants to remain in this country legally and apply for jobs. Forty-seven percent (47%) of voters think Congress should try to find ways to stop the president’s plan, while 41% believe Congress should allow this decision to stand.

Most voters continue to think the federal government should only do what the president and Congress agree on. They also still believe a president should not be able to change laws passed by Congress on his own.

However, just 17% of voters are even somewhat confident that the president and Republicans in Congress will be able to work together to do what’s best for the American people, and that includes only four percent (4%) who are Very Confident.

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/archive/immigration_update_archive/voters_still_fault_feds_for_illegal_immigration

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Is The Ebola Dallas Strain (EDS), an airborne, contagious, incurable and lethal virus mutation, now the source of a world-wide pandemic? — The American People Demand To Be Told The Truth — Videos

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Story 1: Is The Ebola Dallas Strain (EDS), an airborne, contagious, incurable and lethal virus mutation, now the source of a world-wide pandemic? — The American People Demand To Be Told The Truth — Videos

The_Hot_Zone_(cover)f and b cover of book1coming-plague-side

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CDC: Airborne Ebola possible but unlikely

By Elise Viebeck

The Ebola virus becoming airborne is a possible but unlikely outcome in the current epidemic, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Tom Frieden said Tuesday.

The outbreak involves Ebola Zaire, a strain that is passed through bodily fluids, not the air. But some experts have expressed fear about viral mutations due to the unprecedented — and rising — number of Ebola cases.

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Frieden sought to allay those fears during a call with reporters.

“The rate of change [with Ebola] is slower than most viruses, and most viruses don’t change how they spread,” he said. Frieden is unofficially spearheading the U.S. response to Ebola.

“That is not to say it’s impossible that it could change [to become airborne],” he continued. “That would be the worst-case scenario. We would know that by looking at … what is happening in Africa. That is why we have scientists from the CDC on the ground tracking that.”

A change in the way Ebola spreads would make the virus significantly more dangerous. The disease kills roughly half the people it infects, and lacking a vaccine or cure, its traceable chain of transmission through bodily fluids is one reason officials believe they can contain it.

Still, there is almost no precedent for a human virus mutating to become transmissible in a different way, a key piece of evidence in weighing whether that kind of shift is likely for Ebola.

“We have so many problems with Ebola, let’s not make another one that, of course, is theoretically possible but is pretty way down on the list of likely issues,” infectious diseases expert William Schaffner of Vanderbilt University told Scientific American.

Frieden touted new progress against Ebola in West Africa and Dallas, where a Liberian man remains in critical condition, but warned that “globally, this is going to be a long, hard fight.”

The Dallas patient interacted with 10 definite and 38 possible interlocturos who are now being monitored, he said. None have shown symptoms.

http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/220046-cdc-airborne-ebola-possible-but-unlikely

 

Some Ebola experts worry virus may spread more easily than assumed

Ebola could be spread through air in tight quarters, some scientists fear
Some Ebola experts worry that the virus may spread more easily than thought — through the air in small spaces, for example.
By DAVID WILLMAN contact the reporter NationMedical ResearchAfricaScientific ResearchDiseases and IllnessesEbolaU.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Ebola researcher says he would not rule out possibility that the virus spreads through air in tight quarters
‘There are too many unknowns here,’ a virologist says of how Ebola may spread
Ebola researcher says he thinks there is a chance asymptomatic people could spread the virus
U.S. officials leading the fight against history’s worst outbreak of Ebola have said they know the ways the virus is spread and how to stop it. They say that unless an air traveler from disease-ravaged West Africa has a fever of at least 101.5 degrees or other symptoms, co-passengers are not at risk.

“At this point there is zero risk of transmission on the flight,” Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said after a Liberian man who flew through airports in Brussels and Washington was diagnosed with the disease last week in Dallas.

First Ebola infection outside West Africa
Three more people have been hospitalized in Madrid for possible exposure to the Ebola virus after a Spanish nurse tested positive for the virus.
Other public health officials have voiced similar assurances, saying Ebola is spread only through physical contact with a symptomatic individual or their bodily fluids. “Ebola is not transmitted by the air. It is not an airborne infection,” said Dr. Edward Goodman of Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, where the Liberian patient remains in critical condition.

Yet some scientists who have long studied Ebola say such assurances are premature — and they are concerned about what is not known about the strain now on the loose. It is an Ebola outbreak like none seen before, jumping from the bush to urban areas, giving the virus more opportunities to evolve as it passes through multiple human hosts.

Dr. C.J. Peters, who battled a 1989 outbreak of the virus among research monkeys housed in Virginia and who later led the CDC’s most far-reaching study of Ebola’s transmissibility in humans, said he would not rule out the possibility that it spreads through the air in tight quarters.

“We just don’t have the data to exclude it,” said Peters, who continues to research viral diseases at the University of Texas in Galveston.

 

Dr. Philip K. Russell, a virologist who oversaw Ebola research while heading the U.S. Army’s Medical Research and Development Command, and who later led the government’s massive stockpiling of smallpox vaccine after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, also said much was still to be learned. “Being dogmatic is, I think, ill-advised, because there are too many unknowns here.”

If Ebola were to mutate on its path from human to human, said Russell and other scientists, its virulence might wane — or it might spread in ways not observed during past outbreaks, which were stopped after transmission among just two to three people, before the virus had a greater chance to evolve. The present outbreak in West Africa has killed approximately 3,400 people, and there is no medical cure for Ebola.

“I see the reasons to dampen down public fears,” Russell said. “But scientifically, we’re in the middle of the first experiment of multiple, serial passages of Ebola virus in man…. God knows what this virus is going to look like. I don’t.”
A resident looks from behind a gate during the Liberian government’s 11-day Ebola quarantine in the West Point district of Monrovia.
Tom Skinner, a spokesman for the CDC in Atlanta, said health officials were basing their response to Ebola on what has been learned from battling the virus since its discovery in central Africa in 1976. The CDC remains confident, he said, that Ebola is transmitted principally by direct physical contact with an ill person or their bodily fluids.

Skinner also said the CDC is conducting ongoing lab analyses to assess whether the present strain of Ebola is mutating in ways that would require the government to change its policies on responding to it. The results so far have not provided cause for concern, he said.

The researchers reached in recent days for this article cited grounds to question U.S. officials’ assumptions in three categories.

 

One issue is whether airport screenings of prospective travelers to the U.S. from West Africa can reliably detect those who might have Ebola. Frieden has said the CDC protocols used at West African airports can be relied on to prevent more infected passengers from coming to the U.S.

“One hundred percent of the individuals getting on planes are screened for fever before they get on the plane,” Frieden said Sept. 30. “And if they have a fever, they are pulled out of the line, assessed for Ebola, and don’t fly unless Ebola is ruled out.”

Individuals who have flown recently from one or more of the affected countries suggested that travelers could easily subvert the screening procedures — and might have incentive to do so: Compared with the depleted medical resources in the West African countries of Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, the prospect of hospital care in the U.S. may offer an Ebola-exposed person the only chance to survive.

U.S. To Increase Airport Screening For Ebola
The deteriorating conditions in Africa make it more likely additional cases of Ebola will appear in the United States and officials are pushing for increased screenings at airports.
A person could pass body temperature checks performed at the airports by taking ibuprofen or any common analgesic. And prospective passengers have much to fear from identifying themselves as sick, said Kim Beer, a resident of Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone, who is working to get medical supplies into the country to cope with Ebola.

“It is highly unlikely that someone would acknowledge having a fever, or simply feeling unwell,” Beer said via email. “Not only will they probably not get on the flight — they may even be taken to/required to go to a ‘holding facility’ where they would have to stay for days until it is confirmed that it is not caused by Ebola. That is just about the last place one would want to go.”

Liberian officials said last week that the patient hospitalized in Dallas, Thomas Eric Duncan, did not report to airport screeners that he had had previous contact with an Ebola-stricken woman. It is not known whether Duncan knew she suffered from Ebola; her family told neighbors it was malaria.
The potential disincentive for passengers to reveal their own symptoms was echoed by Sheka Forna, a dual citizen of Sierra Leone and Britain who manages a communications firm in Freetown. Forna said he considered it “very possible” that people with fever would medicate themselves to appear asymptomatic.

It would be perilous to admit even nonspecific symptoms at the airport, Forna said in a telephone interview. “You’d be confined to wards with people with full-blown disease.”

On Monday, the White House announced that a review was underway of existing airport procedures. Frieden and President Obama’s assistant for homeland security and counter-terrorism, Lisa Monaco, said Friday that closing the U.S. to passengers from the Ebola-affected countries would risk obstructing relief efforts.

CDC officials also say that asymptomatic patients cannot spread Ebola. This assumption is crucial for assessing how many people are at risk of getting the disease. Yet diagnosing a symptom can depend on subjective understandings of what constitutes a symptom, and some may not be easily recognizable. Is a person mildly fatigued because of short sleep the night before a flight — or because of the early onset of disease?
Moreover, said some public health specialists, there is no proof that a person infected — but who lacks symptoms — could not spread the virus to others.

“It’s really unclear,” said Michael Osterholm, a public health scientist at the University of Minnesota who recently served on the U.S. government’s National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity. “None of us know.”

Russell, who oversaw the Army’s research on Ebola, said he found the epidemiological data unconvincing.
“The definition of ‘symptomatic’ is a little difficult to deal with,” he said. “It may be generally true that patients aren’t excreting very much virus until they become ill, but to say that we know the course of [the virus’ entry into the bloodstream] and the course of when a virus appears in the various secretions, I think, is premature.”

The CDC’s Skinner said that while officials remained confident that Ebola can be spread only by the overtly sick, the ongoing studies would assess whether mutations that might occur could increase the potential for asymptomatic patients to spread it.

Finally, some also question the official assertion that Ebola cannot be transmitted through the air. In late 1989, virus researcher Charles L. Bailey supervised the government’s response to an outbreak of Ebola among several dozen rhesus monkeys housed for research in Reston, Va., a suburb of Washington.

What Bailey learned from the episode informs his suspicion that the current strain of Ebola afflicting humans might be spread through tiny liquid droplets propelled into the air by coughing or sneezing.

l

“We know for a fact that the virus occurs in sputum and no one has ever done a study [disproving that] coughing or sneezing is a viable means of transmitting,” he said. Unqualified assurances that Ebola is not spread through the air, Bailey said, are “misleading.”

Peters, whose CDC team studied cases from 27 households that emerged during a 1995 Ebola outbreak in Democratic Republic of Congo, said that while most could be attributed to contact with infected late-stage patients or their bodily fluids, “some” infections may have occurred via “aerosol transmission.”

Ailing in Monrovia, Liberia
Relatives pray over a weak Siata Johnson, 23, outside the Ebola treatment center at a hospital on the outskirts of Monrovia, Liberia. (John Moore / Getty Images)
Skinner of the CDC, who cited the Peters-led study as the most extensive of Ebola’s transmissibility, said that while the evidence “is really overwhelming” that people are most at risk when they touch either those who are sick or such a person’s vomit, blood or diarrhea, “we can never say never” about spread through close-range coughing or sneezing.

“I’m not going to sit here and say that if a person who is highly viremic … were to sneeze or cough right in the face of somebody who wasn’t protected, that we wouldn’t have a transmission,” Skinner said.

Peters, Russell and Bailey, who in 1989 was deputy commander for research of the Army’s Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, in Frederick, Md., said the primates in Reston had appeared to spread Ebola to other monkeys through their breath.

 

The Ebola strain found in the monkeys did not infect their human handlers. Bailey, who now directs a biocontainment lab at George Mason University in Virginia, said he was seeking to research the genetic differences between the Ebola found in the Reston monkeys and the strain currently circulating in West Africa.

Though he acknowledged that the means of disease transmission among the animals would not guarantee the same result among humans, Bailey said the outcome may hold lessons for the present Ebola epidemic.

“Those monkeys were dying in a pattern that was certainly suggestive of coughing and sneezing — some sort of aerosol movement,” Bailey said. “They were dying and spreading it so quickly from cage to cage. We finally came to the conclusion that the best action was to euthanize them all.”

http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-ebola-questions-20141007-story.html#page=2

No gloves, no masks: Dallas officials send a message of calm amid Ebola fears

By Abby Phillip

Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins pulled into the Ivy Apartments community late in the evening Friday wearing suit pants and a lavender dress shirt.

There were hazardous materials trucks all around, as cleaning crews had arrived to remove materials that might have been touched by Thomas Duncan, a Liberian man who is hospitalized in Texas with Ebola. The hazmat workers were covered from head to toe in bright yellow body suits, green gloves and breathing masks.

Jenkins walked into the apartment in building No. 6 to greet Louise Troh, her family and others who live with her and had been court-ordered to stay in their home because they were considered high risk after coming into contact with Duncan.

It was time to move, and Troh, her 13-year old son, a relative of Duncan’s and another man — all of whom lived in the apartment — got into the judge’s car for the 45-minute drive to their new, temporary home, in an undisclosed part of Dallas.

Jenkins, the judge, never covered up.

“I’m a married man with a little girl,” Jenkins told reporters later that night. “I’m wearing the same shirt I was when I was in the car with that family.

“I was in their house next to those materials, meeting with them, listening to them, and assuring them last night and again of course today. If there were any risk, I would not expose myself or my family to that risk.”

He added: “There is zero risk.”

In the face of widespread fear — and in some cases misinformation — about Ebola following the first diagnosis of the virus in the United States, Dallas officials have taken a notable visual approach to make the point that, at least right now, the city is safe.
The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has reached the United States, as officials confirm one case in Dallas. Here’s how U.S. health officials plan to stop the virus. (Gillian Brockell and Jorge Ribas/The Washington Post)
On a daily basis, workers monitoring the temperatures and health of as many as nine individuals who they believe might have had direct contact with Duncan have entered those people’s homes with no gloves, no masks and no personal protective equipment whatsoever.

And city officials including Jenkins, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings and Dallas County Health and Human Services Director Zachary Thompson have interacted with the family no differently that they might have if the four people who are in a state of semi-isolation had been suspected of having come into contact with somebody sick with the flu.
“Based on our assessment, they were asymptomatic; therefore, I didn’t feel they posed any threat to me,” Thompson said in an interview with The Washington Post on Monday. “There is a standard procedure for when they should be using the PPE’s (personal protective equipment). In this case we knew our nurses, our staff, had assessed that they were asymptomatic.”

So far, none of the people who have potentially had contact with Duncan are showing any symptoms, Thompson said.

Yet concern and stigma are widespread in Dallas.

Photographs from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea — where the epidemic is spiraling out of control — frequently show fully masked health workers carrying infected people to hospitals or burial sites. Those images have become closely associated with the virus and the outbreak in the public’s mind.

And for one day, similar images briefly appeared in Dallas as cleaning crews removed materials from Troh’s apartment that might have come into contact with the virus.
A hazmat team arrives on Oct. 3 to clean a unit at the Dallas apartment complex where the confirmed Ebola patient was staying. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
The decision for the crew to wear personal protective equipment was made by the company, the “Cleaning Guys,” according to Dallas officials.

“We train for this type of thing,” company executive Brad Smith told ABC News. “Obviously, we haven’t trained for Ebola because there hasn’t been a situation in Texas until now.”

The Ebola virus is not very hearty outside of the human body.

Still, touching and destroying potentially infected materials is far different from speaking to or being in the same room with people who might have been exposed to the virus.

And public health expert Gavin Macgregor-Skinner, who worked in Nigeria to end that country’s outbreak, said that treating people with a sense of humanity and not feeding hysteria is critical to managing the Dallas Ebola case and others that might occur around the world.

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“Even in West Africa when we do contact tracing, we don’t put on personal protective equipment,” said Macgregor-Skinner, an assistant professor in the Department of Public Health Sciences at the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. “We have the six-feet rule: We stay about six feet away from people and I can interview them and I can make them feel like people.

“If they have no symptoms, we need to make them feel normal, like they’re part of the community, like they are still loved.”

Dallas officials have also urged residents to go about their normal activities and attend community gatherings and fairs without fear.

“The broader perspective is that we had done immediate disease tracking and contact tracing and the family had been identified who had had close contact and they had not shown any symptoms,” said Thompson. “Other than that one case, basically, his virus has been contained.”

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2014/10/06/no-gloves-no-masks-dallas-officials-send-a-message-of-calm-amid-ebola-fears/

 

‘In 1976 I discovered Ebola – now I fear an unimaginable tragedy’

Peter Piot was a researcher at a lab in Antwerp when a pilot brought him a blood sample from a Belgian nun who had fallen mysteriously ill in Zaire
Peter Piot
Professor Peter Piot, the Director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine: ‘Around June it became clear to me there was something different about this outbreak. I began to get really worried’ Photograph: Leon Neal/AFP

Professor Piot, as a young scientist in Antwerp, you were part of the team that discovered the Ebola virus in 1976. How did it happen?

I still remember exactly. One day in September, a pilot from Sabena Airlines brought us a shiny blue Thermos and a letter from a doctor in Kinshasa in what was then Zaire. In the Thermos, he wrote, there was a blood sample from a Belgian nun who had recently fallen ill from a mysterious sickness in Yambuku, a remote village in the northern part of the country. He asked us to test the sample for yellow fever.

These days, Ebola may only be researched in high-security laboratories. How did you protect yourself back then?

We had no idea how dangerous the virus was. And there were no high-security labs in Belgium. We just wore our white lab coats and protective gloves. When we opened the Thermos, the ice inside had largely melted and one of the vials had broken. Blood and glass shards were floating in the ice water. We fished the other, intact, test tube out of the slop and began examining the blood for pathogens, using the methods that were standard at the time.

But the yellow fever virus apparently had nothing to do with the nun’s illness.

No. And the tests for Lassa fever and typhoid were also negative. What, then, could it be? Our hopes were dependent on being able to isolate the virus from the sample. To do so, we injected it into mice and other lab animals. At first nothing happened for several days. We thought that perhaps the pathogen had been damaged from insufficient refrigeration in the Thermos. But then one animal after the next began to die. We began to realise that the sample contained something quite deadly.

But you continued?

Other samples from the nun, who had since died, arrived from Kinshasa. When we were just about able to begin examining the virus under an electron microscope, the World Health Organisation instructed us to send all of our samples to a high-security lab in England. But my boss at the time wanted to bring our work to conclusion no matter what. He grabbed a vial containing virus material to examine it, but his hand was shaking and he dropped it on a colleague’s foot. The vial shattered. My only thought was: “Oh, shit!” We immediately disinfected everything, and luckily our colleague was wearing thick leather shoes. Nothing happened to any of us.

In the end, you were finally able to create an image of the virus using the electron microscope.

Yes, and our first thought was: “What the hell is that?” The virus that we had spent so much time searching for was very big, very long and worm-like. It had no similarities with yellow fever. Rather, it looked like the extremely dangerous Marburg virus which, like ebola, causes a haemorrhagic fever. In the 1960s the virus killed several laboratory workers in Marburg, Germany.

Were you afraid at that point?

I knew almost nothing about the Marburg virus at the time. When I tell my students about it today, they think I must come from the stone age. But I actually had to go the library and look it up in an atlas of virology. It was the American Centres for Disease Control which determined a short time later that it wasn’t the Marburg virus, but a related, unknown virus. We had also learned in the meantime that hundreds of people had already succumbed to the virus in Yambuku and the area around it.

A few days later, you became one of the first scientists to fly to Zaire.

Yes. The nun who had died and her fellow sisters were all from Belgium. In Yambuku, which had been part of the Belgian Congo, they operated a small mission hospital. When the Belgian government decided to send someone, I volunteered immediately. I was 27 and felt a bit like my childhood hero, Tintin. And, I have to admit, I was intoxicated by the chance to track down something totally new.

Suspected Ebola patient in MonroviaA girl is led to an ambulance after showing signs of Ebola infection in the village of Freeman Reserve, 30 miles north of the Liberian capital, Monrovia. Photograph: Jerome Delay/APWas there any room for fear, or at least worry?

Of course it was clear to us that we were dealing with one of the deadliest infectious diseases the world had ever seen – and we had no idea that it was transmitted via bodily fluids! It could also have been mosquitoes. We wore protective suits and latex gloves and I even borrowed a pair of motorcycle goggles to cover my eyes. But in the jungle heat it was impossible to use the gas masks that we bought in Kinshasa. Even so, the Ebola patients I treated were probably just as shocked by my appearance as they were about their intense suffering. I took blood from around 10 of these patients. I was most worried about accidentally poking myself with the needle and infecting myself that way.

But you apparently managed to avoid becoming infected.

Well, at some point I did actually develop a high fever, a headache and diarrhoea …

… similar to Ebola symptoms?

Exactly. I immediately thought: “Damn, this is it!” But then I tried to keep my cool. I knew the symptoms I had could be from something completely different and harmless. And it really would have been stupid to spend two weeks in the horrible isolation tent that had been set up for us scientists for the worst case. So I just stayed alone in my room and waited. Of course, I didn’t get a wink of sleep, but luckily I began feeling better by the next day. It was just a gastrointestinal infection. Actually, that is the best thing that can happen in your life: you look death in the eye but survive. It changed my whole approach, my whole outlook on life at the time.

You were also the one who gave the virus its name. Why Ebola?

On that day our team sat together late into the night – we had also had a couple of drinks – discussing the question. We definitely didn’t want to name the new pathogen “Yambuku virus”, because that would have stigmatised the place forever. There was a map hanging on the wall and our American team leader suggested looking for the nearest river and giving the virus its name. It was the Ebola river. So by around three or four in the morning we had found a name. But the map was small and inexact. We only learned later that the nearest river was actually a different one. But Ebola is a nice name, isn’t it?

In the end, you discovered that the Belgian nuns had unwittingly spread the virus. How did that happen?

In their hospital they regularly gave pregnant women vitamin injections using unsterilised needles. By doing so, they infected many young women in Yambuku with the virus. We told the nuns about the terrible mistake they had made, but looking back I would say that we were much too careful in our choice of words. Clinics that failed to observe this and other rules of hygiene functioned as catalysts in all additional Ebola outbreaks. They drastically sped up the spread of the virus or made the spread possible in the first place. Even in the current Ebola outbreak in westAfrica, hospitals unfortunately played this ignominious role in the beginning.

After Yambuku, you spent the next 30 years of your professional life devoted to combating Aids. But now Ebola has caught up to you again. American scientists fear that hundreds of thousands of people could ultimately become infected. Was such an epidemic to be expected?

No, not at all. On the contrary, I always thought that Ebola, in comparison to Aids or malaria, didn’t present much of a problem because the outbreaks were always brief and local. Around June it became clear to me that there was something fundamentally different about this outbreak. At about the same time, the aid organisation Médecins Sans Frontières sounded the alarm. We Flemish tend to be rather unemotional, but it was at that point that I began to get really worried.

Why did WHO react so late?

On the one hand, it was because their African regional office isn’t staffed with the most capable people but with political appointees. And the headquarters in Geneva suffered large budget cuts that had been agreed to by member states. The department for haemorrhagic fever and the one responsible for the management of epidemic emergencies were hit hard. But since August WHO has regained a leadership role.

There is actually a well-established procedure for curtailing Ebola outbreaks: isolating those infected and closely monitoring those who had contact with them. How could a catastrophe such as the one we are now seeing even happen?

I think it is what people call a perfect storm: when every individual circumstance is a bit worse than normal and they then combine to create a disaster. And with this epidemic there were many factors that were disadvantageous from the very beginning. Some of the countries involved were just emerging from terrible civil wars, many of their doctors had fled and their healthcare systems had collapsed. In all of Liberia, for example, there were only 51 doctors in 2010, and many of them have since died of Ebola.

The fact that the outbreak began in the densely populated border region between Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia …

… also contributed to the catastrophe. Because the people there are extremely mobile, it was much more difficult than usual to track down those who had had contact with the infected people. Because the dead in this region are traditionally buried in the towns and villages they were born in, there were highly contagious Ebola corpses travelling back and forth across the borders in pickups and taxis. The result was that the epidemic kept flaring up in different places.

For the first time in its history, the virus also reached metropolises such as Monrovia and Freetown. Is that the worst thing that can happen?

In large cities – particularly in chaotic slums – it is virtually impossible to find those who had contact with patients, no matter how great the effort. That is why I am so worried about Nigeria as well. The country is home to mega-cities like Lagos and Port Harcourt, and if the Ebola virus lodges there and begins to spread, it would be an unimaginable catastrophe.

Have we completely lost control of the epidemic?

I have always been an optimist and I think that we now have no other choice than to try everything, really everything. It’s good that the United States and some other countries are finally beginning to help. But Germany or even Belgium, for example, must do a lot more. And it should be clear to all of us: This isn’t just an epidemic any more. This is a humanitarian catastrophe. We don’t just need care personnel, but also logistics experts, trucks, jeeps and foodstuffs. Such an epidemic can destabilise entire regions. I can only hope that we will be able to get it under control. I really never thought that it could get this bad.

What can really be done in a situation when anyone can become infected on the streets and, like in Monrovia, even the taxis are contaminated?

We urgently need to come up with new strategies. Currently, helpers are no longer able to care for all the patients in treatment centres. So caregivers need to teach family members who are providing care to patients how to protect themselves from infection to the extent possible. This on-site educational work is currently the greatest challenge. Sierra Leone experimented with a three-day curfew in an attempt to at least flatten out the infection curve a bit. At first I thought: “That is totally crazy.” But now I wonder, “why not?” At least, as long as these measures aren’t imposed with military power.

A three-day curfew sounds a bit desperate.

Yes, it is rather medieval. But what can you do? Even in 2014, we hardly have any way to combat this virus.

Do you think we might be facing the beginnings of a pandemic?

There will certainly be Ebola patients from Africa who come to us in the hopes of receiving treatment. And they might even infect a few people here who may then die. But an outbreak in Europe or North America would quickly be brought under control. I am more worried about the many people from India who work in trade or industry in west Africa. It would only take one of them to become infected, travel to India to visit relatives during the virus’s incubation period, and then, once he becomes sick, go to a public hospital there. Doctors and nurses in India, too, often don’t wear protective gloves. They would immediately become infected and spread the virus.

The virus is continually changing its genetic makeup. The more people who become infected, the greater the chance becomes that it will mutate …

… which might speed its spread. Yes, that really is the apocalyptic scenario. Humans are actually just an accidental host for the virus, and not a good one. From the perspective of a virus, it isn’t desirable for its host, within which the pathogen hopes to multiply, to die so quickly. It would be much better for the virus to allow us to stay alive longer.

Could the virus suddenly change itself such that it could be spread through the air?

Like measles, you mean? Luckily that is extremely unlikely. But a mutation that would allow Ebola patients to live a couple of weeks longer is certainly possible and would be advantageous for the virus. But that would allow Ebola patients to infect many, many more people than is currently the case.

But that is just speculation, isn’t it?

Certainly. But it is just one of many possible ways the virus could change to spread itself more easily. And it is clear that the virus is mutating.

You and two colleagues wrote a piece for the Wall Street Journalsupporting the testing of experimental drugs. Do you think that could be the solution?

Patients could probably be treated most quickly with blood serum from Ebola survivors, even if that would likely be extremely difficult given the chaotic local conditions. We need to find out now if these methods, or if experimental drugs like ZMapp, really help. But we should definitely not rely entirely on new treatments. For most people, they will come too late in this epidemic. But if they help, they should be made available for the next outbreak.

Testing of two vaccines is also beginning. It will take a while, of course, but could it be that only a vaccine can stop the epidemic?

I hope that’s not the case. But who knows? Maybe.

In Zaire during that first outbreak, a hospital with poor hygiene was responsible for spreading the illness. Today almost the same thing is happening. Was Louis Pasteur right when he said: “It is the microbes who will have the last word”?

Of course, we are a long way away from declaring victory over bacteria and viruses. HIV is still here; in London alone, five gay men become infected daily. An increasing number of bacteria are becoming resistant to antibiotics. And I can still see the Ebola patients in Yambuku, how they died in their shacks and we couldn’t do anything except let them die. In principle, it’s still the same today. That is very depressing. But it also provides me with a strong motivation to do something. I love life. That is why I am doing everything I can to convince the powerful in this world to finally send sufficient help to west Africa. Now!

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/oct/04/ebola-zaire-peter-piot-outbreak

Ebola virus disease

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
“Ebola” redirects here. For other uses, see Ebola (disambiguation).
Ebola virus disease
Classification and external resources
7042 lores-Ebola-Zaire-CDC Photo.jpg

A 1976 photograph of two nurses standing in front of Mayinga N., a person with Ebola virus disease; she died only a few days later due to severe internal hemorrhaging.
ICD10 A98.4
ICD9 065.8
DiseasesDB 18043
MedlinePlus 001339
eMedicine med/626
MeSH D019142

Ebola virus disease (EVD), Ebola hemorrhagic fever (EHF), or simply Ebola is a disease of humans and other primates caused by an ebolavirus. Symptoms start two days to three weeks after contracting the virus, with afever, sore throat, muscle pain, and headaches. Typically, vomiting, diarrhea, and rash follow, along with decreased function of the liver and kidneys. Around this time, affected people may begin to bleed both within the bodyand externally.[1]

The virus may be acquired upon contact with blood or bodily fluids of an infected human or other animal.[1] Spreading through the air has not been documented in the natural environment.[2] Fruit bats are believed to be a carrier and may spread the virus without being affected. Once human infection occurs, the disease may spread between people, as well. Male survivors may be able to transmit the disease via semen for nearly two months. To make the diagnosis, typically other diseases with similar symptoms such as malaria, cholera and other viral hemorrhagic fevers are first excluded. To confirm the diagnosis, blood samples are tested for viral antibodies, viralRNA, or the virus itself.[1]

Outbreak control require community engagement, case management, surveillance and contact tracing, a good laboratory service, and safe burials.[1] Prevention includes decreasing the spread of disease from infected animals to humans. This may be done by checking such animals for infection and killing and properly disposing of the bodies if the disease is discovered. Properly cooking meat and wearing protective clothing when handling meat may also be helpful, as are wearing protective clothing and washing hands when around a person with the disease. Samples of bodily fluids and tissues from people with the disease should be handled with special caution.[1]

No specific treatment for the disease is yet available.[1] Efforts to help those who are infected are supportive and include giving either oral rehydration therapy (slightly sweet and salty water to drink) or intravenous fluids.[1] This supportive care improves outcomes.[1] The disease has a high risk of death, killing between 50% and 90% of those infected with the virus.[1][3] EVD was first identified in an area of Sudan that is now part of South Sudan, as well as in Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo). The disease typically occurs in outbreaks in tropical regions of sub-Saharan Africa.[1] From 1976 (when it was first identified) through 2013, the World Health Organization reported a total of 1,716 cases.[1][4] The largest outbreak to date is the ongoing 2014 West African Ebola outbreak, which is affecting Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Nigeria.[5][6] As of 28 September 2014, 7,157 suspected cases resulting in the deaths of 3,330 have been reported.[7] Efforts are under way to develop a vaccine; however, none yet exists.[1]

Signs and symptoms

Signs and symptoms of Ebola.[8]

Signs and symptoms of Ebola usually begin suddenly with an influenza-like stage characterized by fatigue, fever, headaches, joint, muscle, and abdominal pain.[9][10] Vomiting, diarrhea, and loss of appetite are also common.[10]Less common symptoms include the following: sore throat, chest pain, hiccups, shortness of breath, and trouble swallowing.[10] The average time between contracting the infection and the start of symptoms (incubation period) is 8 to 10 days, but it can vary between 2 and 21 days.[10][11] Skin manifestations may include a maculopapular rash (in about 50% of cases).[12] Early symptoms of EVD may be similar to those of malaria, dengue fever, or other tropical fevers, before the disease progresses to the bleeding phase.[9]

In 40–50% of cases, bleeding from puncture sites and mucous membranes (e.g., gastrointestinal tract, nose, vagina, and gums) has been reported.[13] In the bleeding phase, which typically begins five to seven days after first symptoms,[14] internal and subcutaneous bleeding may present itself in the form of reddened eyes and bloody vomit.[9] Bleeding into the skin may create petechiae, purpura, ecchymoses, and hematomas (especially around needle injection sites). Sufferers may cough up blood, vomit it, or excrete it in their stool.

Heavy bleeding is rare and is usually confined to the gastrointestinal tract.[12][15] In general, the development of bleeding symptoms often indicates a worse prognosis and this blood loss can result in death.[9] All people infected show some signs of circulatory system involvement, including impaired blood clotting.[12] If the infected person does not recover, death due to multiple organ dysfunction syndrome occurs within 7 to 16 days (usually between days 8 and 9) after first symptoms.[14]

Causes

Life cycles of the Ebolavirus

EVD is caused by four of five viruses classified in the genus Ebolavirus, family Filoviridae, order Mononegavirales. The four disease-causing viruses are Bundibugyo virus (BDBV), Sudan virus (SUDV), Taï Forest virus (TAFV), and one called, simply, Ebola virus (EBOV, formerly Zaire Ebola virus)). Ebola virus is the sole member of the Zaire ebolavirus species and the most dangerous of the known Ebola disease-causing viruses, as well as being responsible for the largest number of outbreaks.[16] The fifth virus, Reston virus (RESTV), is not thought to be disease-causing in humans. These five viruses are closely related to the Marburg viruses.

Transmission

Human-to-human transmission can occur via direct contact with blood or bodily fluids from an infected person (including embalming of an infected dead person) or by contact with objects contaminated by the virus, particularly needles and syringes.[17] Other body fluids with ebola virus include saliva, mucus, vomit, feces, sweat, tears, breast milk, urine, and semen. Entry points include the nose, mouth, eyes, or open wounds, cuts and abrasions.[18] The potential for widespread EVD infections is considered low as the disease is only spread by direct contact with the secretions from someone who is showing signs of infection.[17] The symptoms limit a person’s ability to spread the disease as they are often too sick to travel.[19] Because dead bodies are still infectious, traditional burial rituals may spread the disease. Nearly two thirds of the cases of Ebola in Guinea during the 2014 outbreak are believed to be due to burial practices.[20][21] Semen may be infectious in survivors for up to 7 weeks.[1] It is not entirely clear how an outbreak is initially started.[22] The initial infection is believed to occur after ebola virus is transmitted to a human by contact with an infected animal’s body fluids.

One of the primary reasons for spread is that the health systems in the part of Africa where the disease occurs function poorly.[23] Medical workers who do not wear appropriate protective clothing may contract the disease.[24] Hospital-acquired transmission has occurred in African countries due to the reuse of needles and lack of universal precautions.[25][26] Some healthcare centers caring for people with the disease do not have running water.[27]

Airborne transmission has not been documented during EVD outbreaks.[2] They are, however, infectious as breathable 0.8– to 1.2-μm laboratory-generated droplets.[28] The virus has been shown to travel, without contact, from pigs to primates, although the same study failed to demonstrate similar transmission between non-human primates.[29]

Bats drop partially eaten fruits and pulp, then land mammals such as gorillas and duikers feed on these fallen fruits. This chain of events forms a possible indirect means of transmission from the natural host to animal populations, which has led to research towards viral shedding in the saliva of bats. Fruit production, animal behavior, and other factors vary at different times and places that may trigger outbreaks among animal populations.[30]

Reservoir

Bushmeat being prepared for cooking in Ghana, 2013. Human consumption of equatorial animals in Africa in the form of bushmeat has been linked to the transmission of diseases to people, including Ebola.[31]

Bats are considered the most likely natural reservoir of the EBOV. Plants, arthropods, and birds were also considered.[1][32] Bats were known to reside in the cotton factory in which the first cases for the 1976 and 1979 outbreaks were observed, and they have also been implicated in Marburg virus infections in 1975 and 1980.[33] Of 24 plant species and 19 vertebrate species experimentally inoculated with EBOV, only bats became infected.[34] The absence of clinical signs in these bats is characteristic of a reservoir species. In a 2002–2003 survey of 1,030 animals including 679 bats from Gabon and the Republic of the Congo, 13 fruit bats were found to contain EBOV RNA fragments.[35] As of 2005, three types of fruit bats (Hypsignathus monstrosus, Epomops franqueti, and Myonycteris torquata) have been identified as being in contact with EBOV. They are now suspected to represent the EBOV reservoir hosts.[36][37] Antibodies against Zaire and Reston viruses have been found in fruit bats in Bangladesh, thus identifying potential virus hosts and signs of the filoviruses in Asia.[38]

Between 1976 and 1998, in 30,000 mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and arthropods sampled from outbreak regions, no ebolavirus was detected apart from some genetic traces found in six rodents (Mus setulosus andPraomys) and one shrew (Sylvisorex ollula) collected from the Central African Republic.[33][39] Traces of EBOV were detected in the carcasses of gorillas and chimpanzees during outbreaks in 2001 and 2003, which later became the source of human infections. However, the high lethality from infection in these species makes them unlikely as a natural reservoir.[33]

Transmission between natural reservoir and humans is rare, and outbreaks are usually traceable to a single case where an individual has handled the carcass of gorilla, chimpanzee or duiker.[40] Fruit bats are also eaten by people in parts of West Africa where they are smoked, grilled or made into a spicy soup.[37][41]

Virology

Genome

Electron micrograph of an Ebola virus virion

Like all mononegaviruses, ebolavirions contain linear nonsegmented, single-strand, non-infectious RNA genomes of negative polarity that possesses inverse-complementary 3′ and 5′ termini, do not possess a 5′ cap, are notpolyadenylated, and are not covalently linked to a protein.[42] Ebolavirus genomes are approximately 19 kilobase pairs long and contain seven genes in the order 3′-UTRNPVP35VP40GPVP30VP24L5′-UTR.[43] The genomes of the five different ebolaviruses (BDBV, EBOV, RESTV, SUDV, and TAFV) differ in sequence and the number and location of gene overlaps.

Structure

Like all filoviruses, ebolavirions are filamentous particles that may appear in the shape of a shepherd’s crook or in the shape of a “U” or a “6”, and they may be coiled, toroid, or branched.[43] In general, ebolavirions are 80 nm in width, but vary somewhat in length. In general, the median particle length of ebolaviruses ranges from 974 to 1,086 nm (in contrast to marburgvirions, whose median particle length was measured at 795–828 nm), but particles as long as 14,000 nm have been detected in tissue culture.[44]

Replication

The ebolavirus life cycle begins with virion attachment to specific cell-surface receptors, followed by fusion of the virion envelope with cellular membranes and the concomitant release of the virus nucleocapsid into the cytosol. The viral RNA polymerase, encoded by the L gene, partially uncoats the nucleocapsid and transcribes the genes into positive-strand mRNAs, which are then translated into structural and nonstructural proteins. Ebolavirus RNA polymerase (L) binds to a single promoter located at the 3′ end of the genome. Transcription either terminates after a gene or continues to the next gene downstream. This means that genes close to the 3′ end of the genome are transcribed in the greatest abundance, whereas those toward the 5′ end are least likely to be transcribed. The gene order is, therefore, a simple but effective form of transcriptional regulation. The most abundant protein produced is the nucleoprotein, whose concentration in the cell determines when L switches from gene transcription to genome replication. Replication results in full-length, positive-strand antigenomes that are, in turn, transcribed into negative-strand virus progeny genome copy. Newly synthesized structural proteins and genomes self-assemble and accumulate near the inside of the cell membrane. Virions bud off from the cell, gaining their envelopes from the cellular membrane they bud from. The mature progeny particles then infect other cells to repeat the cycle. The Ebola virus genetics are difficult to study due to its virulent nature.[45]

Pathophysiology

Pathogenesis schematic

Endothelial cells, macrophages, monocytes, and liver cells are the main targets of infection. After infection, a secreted glycoprotein (sGP) known as the Ebola virus glycoprotein (GP) is synthesized. Ebola replication overwhelms protein synthesis of infected cells and host immune defenses. The GP forms a trimeric complex, which binds the virus to the endothelial cells lining the interior surface of blood vessels. The sGP forms a dimeric protein that interferes with the signaling of neutrophils, a type of white blood cell, which allows the virus to evade the immune system by inhibiting early steps of neutrophil activation. These white blood cells also serve as carriers to transport the virus throughout the entire body to places such as the lymph nodes, liver, lungs, and spleen.[46]

The presence of viral particles and cell damage resulting from budding causes the release of chemical signals (to be specific, TNF-α, IL-6, IL-8, etc.), which are the signaling molecules for fever and inflammation. The cytopathic effect, from infection in the endothelial cells, results in a loss of vascular integrity. This loss in vascular integrity is furthered with synthesis of GP, which reduces specific integrins responsible for cell adhesion to the inter-cellular structure, and damage to the liver, which leads to improper clotting.[47]

Diagnosis

The travel and work history along with exposure to wildlife are important to consider when the diagnosis of EVD is suspected. The diagnosis is confirmed by isolating the virus, detecting its RNA or proteins, or detecting antibodiesagainst the virus in a person’s blood. Isolating the virus by cell culture, detecting the viral RNA by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and detecting proteins by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) works best early and in those who have died from the disease. Detecting antibodies against the virus works best late in the disease and in those who recover.[48]

During an outbreak, virus isolation is often not feasible. The most common diagnostic methods are therefore real-time PCR and ELISA detection of proteins, which can be performed in field or mobile hospitals.[49] Filovirions can be seen and identified in cell culture by electron microscopy due to their unique filamentous shapes, but electron microscopy cannot tell the difference between the various filoviruses despite there being some length differences.[44]

Phylogenetic tree comparing the Ebolavirus and Marburgvirus. Numbers indicate percent confidence of branches.

Classification

The genera Ebolavirus and Marburgvirus were originally classified as the species of the now-obsolete Filovirus genus. In March 1998, the Vertebrate Virus Subcommittee proposed in the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV) to change the Filovirus genus to the Filoviridae family with two specific genera: Ebola-like viruses andMarburg-like viruses. This proposal was implemented in Washington, DC, on April 2001 and in Paris on July 2002. In 2000, another proposal was made in Washington, D.C., to change the “-like viruses” to “-virus” resulting in today’s Ebolavirus and Marburgvirus.[50]

Rates of genetic change are 100 times slower than influenza A in humans, but on the same magnitude as those of hepatitis B. Extrapolating backwards using these rates indicates that Ebolavirus and Marburgvirus diverged several thousand years ago.[51] However, paleoviruses (genomic fossils) of filoviruses (Filoviridae) found in mammals indicate that the family itself is at least tens of millions of years old.[52] Fossilized viruses that are closely related to ebolaviruses have been found in the genome of the Chinese hamster.[53]

Differential diagnosis

The symptoms of EVD are similar to those of Marburg virus disease.[54] It can also easily be confused with many other diseases common in Equatorial Africa such as other viral hemorrhagic fevers, falciparum malaria, typhoid fever, shigellosis, rickettsial diseases such astyphus, cholera, gram-negative septicemia, borreliosis such as relapsing fever or EHEC enteritis. Other infectious diseases that should be included in the differential diagnosis include the following: leptospirosis, scrub typhus, plague, Q fever, candidiasis, histoplasmosis,trypanosomiasis, visceral