Monday, September 04, 2006

Schwarz: "There are people out there who believe that that this country should be a theocracy."

Congressman Joe Schwarz, having been defeated by Tim Walberg (R-MI-07) in August 8th's primary, has been largely silent about his plans for the future. However, it's becoming increasingly clear what he does not intend to do:
WASHINGTON -- In the wake of his loss in the primary last month, U.S. Rep. Joe Schwarz says he won't endorse or vote for the Republican pastor who defeated him and accused "right-wing intimidators" of running moderates like himself out of the party.
That's right. Joe Schwarz-- a prominent Republican from Battle Creek, who served in Michigan's legislature for years, served Michigan's 7th District in Congress, and even ran for governor in 2002-- will not even vote for his party's nominee, Tim Walberg.

The Detroit News article continues:

"The far right, the religious right are driving moderates out of the party. In the end, that can only hurt because it takes a critical mass to have a successful party," Schwarz said in his first extensive interview since losing the Aug. 8 primary to Tim Walberg.

The Battle Creek physician said several friends told him they plan to leave the party after watching him be hammered on social issues and then lose in spite of endorsements by establishment Republicans including President Bush and Saul Anuzis, chairman of the Michigan Republican Party.

Schwarz said he could see circumstances under which he would join them.

Schwarz accused Walberg of running a "character assassination" campaign, which was aided by a series of "moral absolutist" votes on the U.S. House floor in mid-July -- three weeks before the primary.
While Schwarz has had some harsh criticism of Tim Walberg and the religious right before, this is the closest he's come publicly to switching parties. But just when you thought his criticism couldn't be more harsh, you read this:

Schwarz decried the growing role religion is playing in politics.

Schwarz, who at 68 hasn't ruled out running for elective office in the future, said, "There are people out there who believe that that this country should be a theocracy."

(Emphasis added)

This stunning statement is sure to catch people's attention, as it should. Tim Walberg does not represent the political views of Michigan's 7th District. He represents the views of a small yet influential minority of the Republican Party.

The race also earns the attention of Jack Lessenberry in a column for the Toledo Blade. The relevant portion:
Now, Mr. Schwarz is returning the favor. “I’ve lost elections before, and after each one I could invite my opponent out for a beer. Not this time. I can’t endorse Walberg. His campaign tactics were reprehensible, consisting of one lie and mischaracterization after another.”

During the race, Mr. Walberg painted Mr. Schwarz, a Vietnam veteran, former CIA agent, and strong supporter of the Iraq War, as a liberal who was far too left-wing for the district.

The congressman, who is also a medical doctor, complained that virtually all his opponent’s money came from not only out of the district but out of state, mainly from the shadowy Club for Growth, which funded a smear campaign against him.

Whether he will endorse the Democratic nominee, 50-year-old organic farmer Sharon Renier, is unclear. Two years ago, she lost to Mr. Schwarz, 58 percent to 36 percent, but had no money. The district, which includes Hillsdale and Lenawee Counties, is mainly Republican — but voted for Bill Clinton twice. Any Democrat is a long shot … yet keep an eye on this one.
(Emphasis added)

Help Sharon Renier defeat Tim Walberg-- contribute, volunteer, and tell your friends to support the candidate that really represents the district.


Sharon Renier is the far better candidate. I for one cannot and will not vote for someone who has a serious integrity problems and masquerades as a minister. And I'm a Republican. Schwarz was right, Walberg's campaign, actually Club for Growth's Campaign, was reprehensible. Sharon will be in the majority party when elected and that will be a far better benefit to the 7th. Walberg will ensure we remain a "donor state" as he has vowed to not bring any funds back to our district.

Like Ronald Reagan, former Democrat once said. "I didn't leave the party...the party left me." I think many in the GOP are now saying that. The party certainly left me when it supports people like Tim Walberg.
Let no one forget that Walberg refused to endorse Schwarz after the last primary. He encouraged people to vote for the Constitution Party candidate in 2004 when he lost to Schwarz.

His campaign was based on hot-button wedge issues attacking homosexuals and hispanics.

This is not the republican party I want. Vote for the dem or write in someone with some common sense, Schwarz or otherwise.

A great defeat for the Club for Growth!

Moderate GOP candidate wins in R.I.

By ROBERT TANNER, AP National Writer 17 minutes ago

In the latest test of the country‘s politics of polarization, the middle ground held on.

"Partisan politics must not prevail," he said.

His primary win over Cranston Mayor Steve Laffey was notable in a year that saw moderates from each party lose primaries to hard-line candidates. Chafee thanked Democratic-leaning independents for supporting him, while he also got backing from the Bush administration — with his seat critical to Republicans trying to hold a Senate majority — even after he bucked them on Iraq , taxes and the environment.

But another test of conservatives versus moderates for an Arizona House seat brought a different outcome, with the potential to play a part in the larger fight for control of Congress.

N, , ), worried that Graf may be too conservative to beat Democratic candidate Gabrielle Giffords, a former state legislator.

Each party has struggled this year with intra-party challenges. Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman lost the Democratic primary to anti-war candidate Ned Lamont, though the incumbent is still running as an independent. Michigan Rep. Joe Schwarz, a moderate Republican targeted by the anti-tax Club for Growth, was defeated.

In Rhode Island, the importance of holding onto a GOP Senate seat brought Laura Bush and the GOP establishment to campaign for Chafee — even though he was the only Republican to vote against the resolution to use force against Iraq and he opposed the president‘s tax cuts. Chafee did not even vote for Bush in 2004 — instead writing in the name of Bush‘s father, former President George H.W. Bush.

With 99 percent of precincts reporting, Chafee had 34,042 votes, or 54 percent, to Laffey‘s 29,431 votes, or 46 percent.

Chafee, 53, was appointed to the Senate in 1999 after his father, Sen. John Chafee, a governor and senator, died in office. It was the younger Chafee‘s opposition to Bush‘s tax cuts that spurred the anti-tax Club for Growth to back Laffey.

In New York, frontrunning Democrats swept aside primary challengers — Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton trounced an anti-war candidate in her re-election bid, Attorney General Eliot Spitzer crushed his opposition for the Democratic nod for governor, and Andrew Cuomo easily won the party nomination for attorney general.

In Maryland, the race for the Democratic nomination for the Senate seat left open by Paul Sarbanes‘ retirement was too close to call early Wednesday. Rep. Ben Cardin was leading Kweisi Mfume, former head of the NAACP, 45 percent to 38 percent — or 206,141 votes to 174,454 votes — with 87 percent of precincts reporting. The winner will face GOP Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, who — if he wins again in November — would be the lone black Republican in the Senate.

Judges extended voting hours in Baltimore and nearby Montgomery County by one hour because of problems that delayed the opening of some polling places. Officials said some election judges did not show up on time and others had trouble getting into the facilities.

In New York, Clinton beat challenger Jonathan Tasini with more than 80 percent of the vote. She will face former Yonkers Mayor John Spencer.

Spitzer defeated Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi with more than 80 percent of the vote. He will face GOP candidate John Faso, a former legislative leader, in the fall.

Former federal Housing Secretary Andrew Cuomo — son of former Gov. Mario Cuomo — defeated Mark Green, the former New York City Public Advocate, to win the Democratic nomination for attorney general.

And City Council member Yvette Clarke, who is black, prevailed in a racially charged congressional primary in the heart of Brooklyn, beating white City Councilman David Yassky in an area that has seen an influx of wealthy Manhattan residents and been gripped by debate over a development that would include a new arena for the NBA‘s New Jersey Nets.
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