OC Political

A right-of-center blog covering local, statewide, and national politics

Posts Tagged ‘Abortion’

New President Wen

Posted by Brenda Higgins on September 12, 2018

 

The hippocratic oath originally included a pledge not to administer any abortifacient treatments to pregnant women.  How times have changed.

Today, abortion giant Planned Parenthood named physician, Leana Wen to be their new leader.  Her initial statements following the announcement today, signal that the abortion provider intends to step up their rhetoric that they provide ‘health care’ for women.

Planned Parenthood provides over 300,000 abortions each year, making them the single largest abortion provider in the United States.  Also interesting in the initial statement by and about Dr. Wen, is the substantial deviation from their traditonal approach and messaging. 

Cecil Richards, the former president of Planned Parenthood was political royalty, the daughter of popular Texas Governor Ann Richards, and well connected to all the deep pockets and the most elite of Washington DC and elsewhere.  Cecile, in her role as the face of the Pro-Choice movement was on every Sunday morning or other political pundit show, and used her platform to laud the importance of a woman’s right to chose.  At this time however, the environment has changed and a more sophisticated electorate as well as more shrewd and aggressive Pro-Life organizations, is prompting Planned Parenthood to modify their approach.

They chose a minority woman to be their new face, who is also a medical doctor, which helps them bolster claims of being a “health care” provider.  It is not clear if they will begin by actually providing screening for breast cancer, if they will provide STI testing at free or no cost or if they will  provide free pregnancy tests, obstetric care,  or ultra sounds for pregnant women.  These services now are either not offered at Planned Parenthood, or they are conditioned upon contracting for an abortion, or are only available at a significant cost.  There are no mammograms happening at Planned Parenthood, that has been established. 

It wil be interesting to see if they are working to make good on their promise of “health care” for women, or if they will continue being primarily a for profit business whose business is abortion.

Dr. Wen will officially join Planned Parenthood in November.  Up until this hiring she has been the Health Direcor of the city of Baltimore.  During the time the Dr. Wen has headed the Baltimore Health Department, she presided over the “B’more for Healthy Babies”, a concerted effort by the Baltimore Department of Health to reduce drastically high statistics of Infant Mortality in the city. 

Dr. Wen was successful in Baltimore, by cutting the infant mortality rate by 38% over five years by using data to assess at the risk women in the city.

Sad and strange.

After years of working hard to save the lives of babies of at risk in minority and poor women, Dr. Wen will now be spearheading the organization that has targeted that at-risk and monority popultion, an organiztion whose founder (Margaret Sanger) embraced eugenics through abortion as a form of population control in minority communties.  

Similarly sad and strange, Dr. Wen, a chinese immigrant, was brought to the U.S. by her parents when she was 8 years old.  China’s forced abortion, one-child policy has resulted in the extermination of nearly a half million Chinese, most of them women.  Fortunately for Dr. Wen, in the U.S. she actually does have a choice, unlike Chinese women and their female babies.

Already, Dr Wen, has couched her view of the work of Planned Parenthood as one of compassion toward women.  Truly compassionate care toward women would address the needs of the whole woman, of her baby, of her ongoing health.  As they continue to distribute abortion pills without follow up or medical supervision, as they begin the process of distributing abortion pills on college campuses without doctors or medical follow up, it is disingenuous and illogical to portray the organization as being concerned about the well being of women.  

It is a new day, of amped up rhetoric and increased deception.  Planned Parenthood is an abortion business, it is not clear yet if the hiring of Dr. Wen is to increase the health care posturing, or if they really will begin offering services consistent with their claims.  There are many, and the numbers are growing every day,  women’s health care clinics that actually do provide health care for women. If Dr. Wen was concerned about women’s health, and serving minority and poor women who are at-risk, she would be partnering with those life affirming pregnancy medical centers.  The most at-risk and under-represented women in America, are the ones who are still residing in their mothers wombs. 

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Nifla v. Becerra, It’s not an abortion case

Posted by Brenda Higgins on July 9, 2018

The Reproductive FACT act was a boldly unconstitutional law that was signed by Governor Brown in October 2015. 

The Bill, AB 775 (Later codified as H&S 123470) was entitled the Reproductive FACT Act (Freedom, Accountability, Comprehensive Care, and Accountability)  The bill provided that Pro-Life Pregnancy centers, who exist because of their objection to abortion, would be required to provide information about abortion to their clients, in their office, on their internal forms and in all advertising.  The onerous law also mandated exact language, required large font type and required in some counties that the notices would have to be provided in 13 languages.  

The case (NIFLA v. Becerra) decided by the Supreme Court was an appeal brought by NIFLA (National Institute for Life and Family Advocates) after the Ninth Circuit ruled the law to be constitutional and not in violation of the First Amendment.  There was another case brought in Riverside County Superior court, Sharpen v. Harris, challenging the constitutionality of the law.   Judge Gloria Trask  ruled in favor of the pregnancy center, finding that the FACT Act violated Article 1, section 2 of the California Constitution.
The  Riverside Superior court, relied upon U.S. Supreme Court precedent related to the U.S. constitution’s First Amendment. The court stated, “Compelled speech is that which forces a speaker to say that which he or she may or may not believe.  Compelled speech is undoubtedly necessary in many circumstances.  But compelled speech of a political or cultural nature, is not the tool of a free government.”  

The Riverside court applied Strict Scrutiny, the highest level of constitutional scrutiny, and said  that the political speech related to abortion, can not be neutral in nature.  The court found that the state of California failed to show any compelling state interest advanced by the regulation.

The FACT Act mandated two different notices.  One notice was for ‘licensed’ facilities, and another notice for ‘unlicensed’ facilities.  A ‘licensed’ facility was defined by the statute as a clinic whose ‘primary purpose is providing family planning or pregnancy related services’.  The ‘unlicensed’ facility was defined as one ‘whose primary purpose is pregnancy related services’ but who did not have a medical director on staff.

The Ninth Circuit, said that the pregnancy centers “were unable to demonstrate a likelihood of success on the merits of their First Amendment claims.”  The Ninth Circuit court went on to state that  Strict Scrutiny was not warranted and that the “Act is a neutral law of general applicability, which survived rational basis (The lowest level of constitutional scrutiny) review.” As to the notice for licensed facilities, the Ninth Circuit found that it was entitled to only Intermediate scrutiny (Heightened, but not strict) and that the FACT Act survived Intermediate Scrutiny.  The Ninth Circuit  found that the unlicensed notice survived ANY level of scrutiny.  

The Ninth Circuit opinion spent much effort discussing “professional speech”.   One of the first things noted by The Supreme Court in its ruling overturning the Ninth Circuit, is that the Supreme Court has never recognized “professional speech” as a special category of speech giving it some lower “Intermediate” threshold of consideration.  Justice Thomas writing for the majority said, “This Court has been reluctant to mark off new categories of speech for diminished constitutional protection.”

Justice Thomas, also noted,  “The licensed notice at issue here is not an informed consent requirement or any other regulation of professional conduct. The notice does not facilitate informed consent to a medical procedure. In fact, it is not tied to a procedure at all. It applies to all interactions between a covered facility and its clients, regardless of whether a medical procedure is ever sought, offered, or performed.”  Justice Thomas pointed out the gaping exceptions in the FACT Act, exempting state and federal managed and funded providers.  This regulation, was targeted toward those clinics and resource centers that are largely non-profit, pro-life and Christian.

 

The Supreme Court and the Ninth Circuit both called the FACT Act, “Content Based”.  Content based regulation generally triggers the high level strict scrutiny review for constitutionality.  The Ninth Circuit veered around this standard with its created category of “professional speech”  The Supreme Court rejected that effort to find justification for the FACT Act.

Justice Kennedy’s concurring opinion was clear and direct. 

“The history of the Act’s passage and its underinclusive application suggest a real 

possibility that these individuals were targeted because of their beliefs. ……”

  “It is forward thinking to begin by reading the First Amendment as ratified in 1791; to understand the history of authoritarian government as the Founders then knew it; to confirm that history since then shows how relentless authoritarian regimes are in their attempts to stifle free speech; and to carry those lessons onward as we seek to preserve and teach the necessity of freedom of speech for the generations to come.”

“Governments must not be allowed to force persons to express a message contrary to their deepest convictions. Freedom of speech secures freedom of thought and belief. This law imperils those liberties.”

Breyer’s dissent laments that the court should only look to the “reasonableness of the Legislature’s belief in the existence of evils and in the effectiveness of the remedy provided.” With one fell swoop, ignoring the whole body of First Amendment freedoms of speech and religion and dismissing the viewpoint encroachment of the state of California. 

No part of  Breyer’s dissent or the now discredited Ninth Circuit opinion, addressed the obvious and underlying philosophy of California that there is a ‘state interest’, in making sure women know about state funded abortion services. 

Breyer relies heavily upon Planned Parenthood v. Casey (Casey).  Interesting, in that the Ninth Circuit cites Casey as well, but in support of an opposite argument.   Breyer, criticizing Thomas and Kennedy’s majority opinion states, “one might take the majority’s decision to mean that speech about abortion is special”.  The Ninth Circuit, also relying on Casey, said that the high court had not announced a “rule regarding the level of scrutiny to apply in abortion-related disclosure cases”, implying throughout their ruling that abortion-related disclosure is in fact entitled to some yet undefined special scrutiny.  

The problem with the reliance upon Casey by both Breyer and the Ninth Circuit, is that Casey,  reaffirms Roe, which held that the Woman, not the state, has a right of Privacy and thus, a right to an abortion of an unviable fetus.  The state, as held in both of those seminal cases, has a interest in the life of the child, at the point of viability.  

The backwards application of Casey, by both the Ninth Circuit and Breyer, is not insignificant.  In the mental gymnastics they engage in to attempt to find support for this constitutionally offensive law, they attempt to create a new and unrecognized exception, and imagine a state interest in providing abortion.  

The majority and concurring opinions written by Thomas and Kennedy, do not even get to the lack of congruency in those positions of support for the law, because the FACT Act was so blatantly offensive to the First Amendment under proper scrutiny.  Judge Trask in Riverside similarly recognized the inherent flaw in the Act in that in infringed speech in a way it compelled clinics to “speak words with which it profoundly disagrees”.

The case should be an example, and a wake up call.  The fact that such a overtly biased and constitutionally offensive law made its way through the legislature and governors office, only to be defended by not one, but two Attorneys general, should tell us something about either the energy or the arrogance with which the left will go in the current environment, to silence those that it disagrees with.  

Justice Thomas put it like this:

Throughout history, governments have “manipulat[ed] the content of doctor-patient discourse” to increase state power and suppress minorities: 

“For example, during the Cultural Revolution, Chinese physicians were dispatched to the countryside to convince peasants to use contraception. In the 1930s, the Soviet government expedited completion of a construction project on the Siberian railroad by ordering doctors to both reject requests for medical leave from work and conceal this government order from their patients. In Nazi Germany, the Third Reich systematically violated the separation between state ideology and medical discourse. German physicians were taught that they owed a higher duty to the ‘health of the Volk’ than to the health of individual patients. Recently, Nicolae Ceausescu’s strategy to increase the Romanian birth rate included prohibitions against giving advice to patients about the use of birth control devices and disseminating information about the use of condoms as a means of preventing the transmission of AIDS.” Berg, Toward a First Amendment Theory of Doctor-Patient Discourse and the Right To Receive Unbiased Medical Advice, 74 B. U. L. Rev. 201, 201– 202 (1994) (footnotes omitted). 

Ultimately, the majority of the Supreme Court saw this power grab for the constitutional overreach that it was, and ruled accordingly.  

Posted in California | Tagged: , , , | 3 Comments »

Travis Allen – Not so Pro-Life!

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on April 19, 2018

Assemblyman Travis Allen is one of the candidates for Governor of California (web site).  He and John Cox (web site) are the two major Republican candidates.  Either of them would make a far better Governor for California than any of the Democratic candidates.

However, for people who value a politician’s voting record to see how he or she will vote and act on policy issues in the future (here as Governor of California), Mr. Allen’s voting record on the life issue is not consistent with his alleged “pro-life” campaign trail statements and claims.

On a consistent basis Assemblyman Travis Allen has steadily avoided voting yes or no on many, many bills (legislation and resolutions) in the Assembly that deal with the life (i.e. abortion) issue.  The document I have attached here: Travis Allen 2018 was painstakingly researched and put together by my friend Gina Gleason.  It reveals that Mr. Allen has abstained over and over again on bills on the abortion issue.  As an example from Mrs. Gleason’s list:

AB 569 (Gonzales/Fletcher) The bill prohibits an employer (INCLUDING A CHURCH) from requiring employees to sign a code of conduct that prohibits the employee from having an abortion. The bill was sponsored by NARAL Pro Choice California. (9/14/17) Note: Even Gov. Jerry Brown opposed this bill and it was vetoed. Assemblyman Travis Allen was present but abstained.
http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billVotesClient.xhtml?bill_id=201720180AB569

SJR 19 (Jackson) Both the CA Assembly and Senate urged the President and Congress to support access to abortions, including the services provided by Planned Parenthood, and to oppose efforts to eliminate federal funding for Planned Parenthood. (5/23/16) Assemblyman Travis Allen was present but abstained.
http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billVotesClient.xhtml?bill_id=201520160SJR19

In addition, Planned Parenthood (the largest provider of abortions in the United States) has twice given Mr. Allen a rating of over 50%: 2014 55% and 2016 67% (to be fair he received a zero rating in 2013, 2015 and 2107).  Here is PP’s web site for its scorecard (also listed on Mrs. Gleason’s document about Mr. Allen).

The life issue was the main public policy issue that motivated me to get involved in politics as an activist many years ago. Therefore Mr. Allen’s voting record on this issue is very important to me and who I decide to vote for in June.  If Mr. Allen is one of the top two candidates out of the June primary and the other top two candidate is a Democrat (none of them have stated they are pro-life) I will certainly vote for him as the better of the two choices.  But for the June primary, I have more than two choices and I will be exercising that choice.

I hope you find this information useful in your voting decision on the race for Governor for the June primary.

Craig P. Alexander, Esq. is an attorney at law who practices law in Dana Point, California.  He can be reached at craig@craigalexanderlaw.com.

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U.S. Senate Democrat Hypocrisy In Full Display Joined by Two Republicans!

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on January 30, 2018

Sometimes satire is very very funny. The Babylon Bee (http://babylonbee.com/) is a Christian satire site similar to the Onion but with a religious theme to it.  It’s “articles” are usually funny with lots of humor often poking fun at popular culture and at the Church itself.

But sometimes its satire is bitingly and strikingly to the point.  The vote by most of the U.S. Senate Democrats and two Republican Senators Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins on the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act is a case in point – actually two cases on point.  First is the Bee’s article entitled:

Senate Democrats Refuse To Grant Legal Status To Children Dreaming Of Being Born (Link)

The article begins: “WASHINGTON, DC—Voting down a measure that would have banned most abortions after 20 weeks gestation, Senate Democrats on Monday refused to grant legal status to millions of unborn children dreaming of one day being born.”

Later in the article it states: “Frankly, I’m tired of the Republicans’ sob stories about these so-called ‘dreamers’ who are deliberately hiding inside a womb, hoping for government protection without going through the proper channels,” a DNC spokesperson told reporters. “Maybe it’s not their fault their parents brought them into this world, but that does not give them the same Constitutional right to life that hardworking, natural-born Americans have earned.”

For the rest of this bitingly true article go to the link above – its satire but it is strikingly on point.

The the Babylon Bee followed up with this excellent piece:

After Killing 20-Week Abortion Ban, Democrats Resume Lecturing People About Compassion (Link)

This one begins: “WASHINGTON, D.C.—According to sources within the Senate, Democratic legislators took a short break from their tireless schedule of lecturing the nation about compassion Monday in order to vote against a ban on the barbaric practice of ripping helpless 20-week-old babies limb from limb and pulling them from the wombs of their mothers.”

Later the article “reported”: “We had to hit pause on our monologues about immigrant children for a quick minute so we could ensure that women’s rights to kill their babies at any time, for any reason are preserved,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said. “But rest assured, we are back on our moral high horse and will proceed to posture as champions of the oppressed and the only virtuous human beings on earth, now that that task is complete.”

Finally this satire piece noted that “At publishing time, sources confirmed that the two Republicans who sided with the Democrats to shoot down the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act—Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine—had resumed acting as though they represented the values of their constituents.”

I highly recommend you go to the link above for this full article too.

While these two reports are truly “satire,” they are based on true events that occurred this week (the week of January 29th).  And both point to the absolute hypocrisy of most U.S. Senate Democrats (including our own Kamala Harris and Dianne Feinstein).

Both articles are very short and worth your time.

Posted in U.S. Politics, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Abortion: Yeah, Let’s go there.

Posted by Brenda Higgins on August 1, 2014

No one wants to talk about it.  No one.  Well maybe a few people.

The people that are often considered the fringe.  Those who are willing to stand on the street corners or outside Planned Parenthood clinics with posters depicting bloody aborted fetuses.  The ones who believe that since deadly force can be a response to deadly force that it’s okay to bomb abortion clinics or kill doctors who perform them because in God’s eyes, abortion is murder.  These people believe they are licensed, usually through their relationship with Jesus Christ and knowledge of the holy scriptures, empowered to deliver this judgment and condemnation to those participating in the murder of unborn fetuses.  

Of course there’s another side.

There are the ones who wear tampons as earrings, proclaim their God given right to have an employer or educational institution pay for their birth control.  These are the same people who want to rant and rail against the “establishment” that is holding women back.  They opine that a woman’s body is her own and by all means, she should have “Access” (and by access they usually mean, without paying for) an abortion under any circumstances at anytime.  After all, it is “her” body and the fetus is merely a parasitic organism that can not exist without it’s host.  

Most human beings do not identify with either of these perspectives, yet these are the two schools of thought that dominate the debate.  Unless and until the reasonable humans in the midst of these competing ideals, start thinking and speaking, and voting, we will continue to have these viceral and pointless oppositions dominating our political landscape and we, yes all of us are the problem, WE will continue to experience recurring, abhorrent events and places like the Kermit Gosnell house of abortion horrors.  There is no one that thinks that was a good place or process for women or children and BOTH SIDES blame the other side for creating an environment surrounding abortion that such a place evolved into existence.  They are right, BOTH side are to blame for the development of such a place that atrocities could occur, but they miss the real point,  You and I, those of us in the middle, we are ALSO to blame. Our inaction, our silence, our failure to speak our mind, to donate to charitable organizations who help women with unplanned pregnancies and for voting without being informed.  

The business of abortion, contrary to what you might believe, is not just the business of performing abortions.  The big money is in the debate.  Most of the money, and there is a lot of it, raised by the “Pro-Life” movement, goes into political campaigns.  Not to unwed mothers, not to homeless or poor women or children, not to orphanages or adoption agencies, but to politicians.  There are watch groups who track the voting of politicians once they are elected with their Pro-Life platform and Pro-Life Money, to make sure they are holding the line on Pro-Life Issues.  Not to diminish the importance of knowing what politicians are doing after they are elected, and knowing their views before they are elected, but the magnitude of the money invested in this process has become largely disproportional to the actual effect.

It is utterly ineffective and I can assure you, that politicians, the funds and the litmus test have saved exactly zero babies.  The same could be said of the bloody poster boards.

Let’s refresh our memories.  Jesus said of the commandments, the “greatest of these is love” and that they will “know us by our love”.

While we on the right, rant and rave about smaller government and protect our rights to own guns and worship and travel and vote, we jump up and down and ask the government, manipulate and control and attempt to influence the government, to tell women what they can or can’t do with their bodies.  While at the same time we ignore the obvious answer.  If it really is our mandate from God, why are we not going to God with this?  Why do we continue to seek and pursue with great vim and vigor a legislative solution to an issue of morality?  Who is it that has lost it’s moral compass in this debate?  I beg for you to consider that we all have. 

As we strive, from whatever side you find yourself on, passionate that women much be protected and advocated for, or that the immorality of abortion must be stopped, it is essentially a value based judgment, and a value based decision when an individual is faced with it.

Outlawing abortion is not the answer.  Nor will it EVER, yes I said, EVER occur in this country.  Please feel free to learn something about Supreme Court Jurisprudence and let’s start fighting a good fight.

What if we start respecting the law as it exists.  What if we started (both sides) respecting the views of the other, and PRAYING for them, that they would know God’s love, have the respect that we have for Human life, and personal bodily integrity (WHATever side you find yourself on).

The answer, as we keep saying with health care and immigration and so many other issues these days, is NEVER MORE GOVERNMENT.  Yet we take this issue and do an about face and cry out for MORE government intervention, regulation and restriction.

Let go and let God.  What if we tried that.  What if we took seriously the Great Commission and carried the message of God’s Love instead of being messengers of condemnation, because I’ve never found “carry forth my condemnation” spoken by Jesus or any of his Apostles, and in case you haven’t noticed, the Pro-Life movement has not made much headway in “outlawing” abortion.

Children and their mothers need the love and support that the religious right purports to stand on.  There is a better way to deliver and convey that than what we have been doing.  We need to seek and find that better way.  

Or we could debate and fight about it for another few years, while more babies die and more women are traumatized and another Kermit Gosnell rises up.  The time has come to re-think everything.  

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Why Neel Kashkari is a Non-Starter for this Fiscal and Social Conservative

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on February 10, 2014

Another entrant into the California Governor’s race, Neel Kashkari, is right out of the play book of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Meg Whitman – a rich businessman who has never held elective office and is socially liberal but claims to be a fiscal conservative. Mr. Kashkari, while likely a very nice gentleman and a great private industry success story, is not a candidate this fiscal and social conservative can support.

When the former Bush administration official entered the California Governor’s race he proclaimed that his emphasis for the Governor’s race is the high poverty rate in California and improving education. The successful Republican businessman has taken a position in favor of abortion and homosexual marriage. One of the chief creators and implementers of the Bush Administration’s Troubled Asset Recovery Program (TARP), he defends that program because he claims the government was repaid all of the loaned funds plus interest. In my opinion, on TARP, Mr. Kashkari seriously misses the point of fiscal conservatives’ objections to that program, some of which I will cover below.

Undoubtedly other voices in the Republican Party will soon be lecturing conservatives like myself that social issues are losers for Republicans in California and we need a successful businessperson who is “socially liberal” to lead California and the CRP out of its woes.  With all due respect we have heard this tune before and it has only been a disaster for California and the Republican Party.  This same tune was played to us in 2003 for the recall of Gov. Gray Davis.  We were told Tom McClintock could not win the Governorship so we all must get behind successful showman Arnold Schwarzenegger.  While Arnold’s early years showed promise (repealing the car tax which he later raised again), right after he was re-elected in 2006 he took a hard turn to the left and gave us things like the carbon cap and trade laws that are crippling business in California.

He also joined then Attorney General Jerry Brown by refusing to defend Proposition 8, which resulted in the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to allow homosexual marriage in California not because the people voted for it, or due to the courts actually finding it was proper on the merits, but solely due to the Governor’s (and Attorney General’s) refusal to do their job and defend the law.  This has severely weakened the initiative system in California as it allows the Governor and Attorney General to veto the people’s voice by simply refusing to defend a federal constitutional challenge to an initiative that the people voted yes on.  I lay this partially at Mr. Schwarzenegger’s feet.

The next time we heard this piped piper tune of “we need to run a rich social liberal Republican” was Meg Whitman’s run for Governor against Jerry Brown four years ago. Although Ms. Whitman is a very nice person (I met her a couple of times) and she is a rich and successful Republican, she had never held elective office and she is pro-abortion.  Her views on homosexual marriage seem to be both yes and no.  It is my understanding that she also supported TARP.  Ms. Whitman was rejected by voters who were tired of years of pseudo Republican Arnold as Governor in favor of re-tread Jerry “Governor Moon Beam” Brown.

And here we are again with another candidate right out of the Arnold / Meg mold.  We are being told take our sincerely held beliefs on social issues (and even fiscal issues); ignore them and recent history to support and vote for Mr. Kashkari.

For this conservative activist my answer is No Thank You.  Obviously as you have gathered Mr. Kashkari and I differ on abortion and homosexual marriage.  And while I realize the Courts have instituted homosexual marriage in California by judicial fiat and abortion is regularly made more and more legal and taxpayer supported by the Democratic legislature (and current Governor) that does not equate to any obligation for me to support a candidate that also believes in these policies.  There is no reasonable expectation that a Governor Kashkari would act any differently than the Arnold or Moon Beam.

However Mr. Kashkari’s actions as a Bush Administration Treasury official and his defense of his role in the TARP program, in my opinion, place him in at least a very questionable category on fiscal issues.  The TARP program should be called the Bail Out Wall Street Big Bankers program.  It put the federal government in the corporate boardrooms as an owner – a place it should never be in in a free enterprise economic system.

In addition, the companies the TARP program bailed out were, for the most part, companies that made very bad business decisions and should have been allowed to fail.  Even with TARP bailouts, many, many employees of these companies (who did not make the bad decisions for their employers) lost their jobs anyway.  Finally these big banks now have cash in their coffers but they are generally not lending to small businesses who find capital still very difficult to come by almost six years after the 2008 crisis.  Regular consumers also are still having a harder time obtaining loans, etc.  In short TARP was great for Wall Street but not for Main Street where the rest of us live.  Many on the left also opposed TARP which could hurt Mr. Kashkari’s prospects with voters in June.

This is the bailout program Mr. Kashkari is so proud of and is his only governmental claim to fame.  To me this does not make him qualified for the Governor’s office.

In the June “top two” primary election, we will most likely be given the choice of Governor Jerry Brown, Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, Neel Kashkari and now Mayor Andrew Blount of Laguna Hills plus two or three more minor candidates.  Of course a late entry by another more established Republican candidate like Congressman Darrell Issa would up end the race – he has money, a very good track record, good name ID, etc.  But so far neither Mr. Issa nor any other well-known Republican has said they are even interested in entering the race.

Can Mr. Kashkari best Mr. Donnelly and now Andrew Blount in June to be one of the “top two” for the run off in November?  Yes he may do so.  But it is not “inevitable.”  First – voters in the “top two” primary vote for one of all the candidates – not for which Republican or Democrat they like.  Voters who like Jerry Brown over Tim Donnelly are going to vote for Jerry Brown not Mr. Kashkari.  That leaves voters who do not like Mr. Brown which will include most Republicans and many decline to state voters.  I will not predict how all Republicans will vote.  But I will predict that many fiscal and social conservative Republicans like me will choose Mr. Donnelly as more in line with their beliefs on public policy than Mr. Kashkari plus Mr. Donnelly’s experience at holding elected office.  I do not yet know enough about Mr. Blount (who describes himself as a Libertarian) to give any opinions about what voters will be attracted to him.  A lot will depend on how Mr. Donnelly, Mr. Kashkari and Mr. Blount conduct themselves on the campaign trial.

As for Decline to State voters – many are former Republicans who left the party for one reason or another.  For those who felt the party was too conservative – Mr. Kashkari might be their cup of tea.  But for those who felt the CRP was not consistent in presenting candidates and elected officials whose positions and decisions adhere to the Party’s own platform – it is illogical to think they would vote for Mr. Kashkari.   Some will vote for Tim Donnelly, some may vote for Andrew Blount and some may just skip that part of the ballot.

So I would say it is a toss up as to whether or not Mr. Kashkari will face Governor Brown in November.   But my vote in June will not be for Mr. Kashkari – that tune I have heard before and is not a dance I chose to join in.

Am I supporting Assemblyman Donnelly?  I have not given him any money or endorsed him  (or any other candidate at this point).  That may change, as we get closer to June.  Also, I am a practicing attorney and a Republican activist for limited and constitutional government.  I am not on any candidates’ payroll and I do not earn a living as a political consultant.

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