Archive for Sunday, November 5, 2006

LIVE BLOG: President Bush visits Kansas to boost Ryun

Speech to begin after 6 p.m.

November 5, 2006, 2:36 p.m. Updated November 5, 2006, 6:51 p.m.


— We're live-blogging today's campaign rallies today. Follow along!

¢ 2:27 p.m.: President Bush isn't here yet.

No worries. He's not supposed to be for another three hours. But we're getting the live-blogging started now, because the politicking has already started.

The president, of course, is here to rally support on behalf of incumbent Republican U.S. Rep. Jim Ryun. A Republican poll leaked this week indicates that Ryun is trailing his opponent, Democrat Nancy Boyda, by two points. While that's well within the margin of error, it's uncomfortably tight for Ryun, who has pretty much run away with his previous races.

Not content to let Bush and Ryun have all the spotlight, Boyda just held a rally of her own on the steps of the state capitol. It was a noisy crowd, with only a few protesters attending; Boyda asserted that at least 1,000 people -- many of them union employees at the Topeka Goodyear plant -- were on hand. "I don't want to see stories in the press saying 'a couple of hundred people were on hand,'" she warned the assembled media.

Her stump speech seemingly mentioned President Bush more often than it mentioned Ryun, her opponent. She laid responsibility for America's ills -- the war in Iraq, particularly -- at the president's feet. "Jim Ryun has been a go-along guy" for the president's policies, she said.

"They are worried, they are worried sick about losing (Ryun's) seat," Boyda said of Republicans.

We'll be live-blogging all afternoon and into the evening. First, though, we have to get into the Kansas Expocentre, where the president will be speaking. Getting through security at a presidential event is always an adventure, so wish us luck.

In the meantime, use the comments section below to discuss the Ryun-Boyda race and President Bush's appearance. If you have any questions about what's going on, leave them there and I'll try to get them answered in the blog.

Returning soon.

¢ 3:16 p.m.: Made it through security. I'm at the Expocentre. Only ... three hours to go.

There's already more than 1,000 people inside -- probably more than that -- with hundreds more in line outside. We do know that all 8,000 tickets available for this event were snapped up pretty quickly.

Not much political to report on right now. The Washburn University cheerleaders are here -- dancing to the groove of a marching band, perhaps also Washburn's. (Current music: "Pretty Fly for a White Guy," followed by a drum piece that sounds like the theme from "Green Acres.") Most people are taking seats, but a young crowd had gathered in the "mosh pit" area directly in front of the stage. The house lights are low, with spotlights circling everywhere, like we're about to watch a Vegas show. Good times.

¢ 3:29 p.m.: I should mention that there wasn't much in the way of protesters while I was approaching the Expocenter. This was at around 3 p.m., so it's kind of early, but only about a dozen people standing on the sidewalk in front of the Honda dealership across the street. Signs: "Where's WMD?" and "Impeach Bush."

¢ 3:34 p.m.: Presentation of colors by the Topeka West Junior ROTC. They're all dressed in 1776 Revolutionary War outfits, followed by an opening prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance. Pat Howser of St. Paul leads the pledge, followed by "God bless America and God bless President Bush." Dixie Road sings the national anthem.

*3:41 p.m.: Ron Freeman, executive director, speaks. "There is a fundamental difference between what Republicans believe and what Democrats believe."

Republicans, he says, believe that people free to work hard and produce make our country great. "When you think about the other guys, their agenda - and I believe it's genetic - that if you give them enough of your money, if you give them control of your local schools, if you let them run your business," then everything will go fine.

Chuck Ahner, Dennis Moore's Republlican opponent for Congress in the 3rd District, takes the stage -- though Topeka is outside his district. He touts the high stock market and the low unemployment rate - the results, he says, of the Republican Congress. He also mentions John Kerry's botched joke about Iraq this week. Many boos.

¢ 3:46 p.m.: More Ahner.

"Do you want Speaker Pelosi?"

Crowd: "Noooo!"

"Do you want Senator Kerry leading the Senate?"

Crowd: "Noooo!"

"I intend to be the next representative from the 3rd District in Kansas on Tuesday!"

¢ 3:51 p.m.: Dixie Road is back on stage. "Does anybody like country music in here?"

¢ 3:55 p.m.: While the music is going, we look elsewhere for coverage for the day.

AP has already sent out its story about Boyda's rally -- perhaps earning her ire by estimating the crowd at 500.

Still, AP says: "The day's events were a stark contrast to the Ryun-Boyda race two years ago, when Ryun beat Boyda handily. In recent weeks, analysts said Ryun has been caught in the wake of an anti-incumbent wave that has put seats such as Ryun's in play.

"'She couldn't have gotten this crowd two years ago,' said Bob Beatty, a Washburn University political scientist."

¢ 4:03 p.m.: Dixie Road covers Toby Keith's "Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue." That's followed by Lee Greenwood's "God Bless the USA" - which, incidentally, was the first song played at Boyda's rally after her speech. Clearly, the main question in this election is: Who can lay the best claim to the blessing of Lee Greenwood?

¢ 4:14 p.m.: Freeman pitches Phill Kline, saying the attorney general has won the death penalty case before the Supreme Court, a water rights case with Nebraska and helped pass "Jessica's Law" in Kansas. "For anyone to conclude the Phill Kline is inexperienced, you must be a liberal."

¢ 4:15 p.m.: Jim Barnett, the GOP candidate for governor, takes the stage - no jacket, no tie.

He mentions Bill O'Reilly. Big cheers.

Says Gov. Kathleen Sebelius chaired John Kerry's campaign in Kansas. Big boos.

"We can win Nov. 7 with your help," he says.

¢ 4:21 p.m.: Karen Seaberg, Atchison, takes the stage for the Ryun campaign.

"I don't expect you to agree with Jim Ryun on every issue. I don't - I don't think any congressman can do that. But I know Jim and his family are of high moral fiber."

¢ 4:29 p.m. Freeman again: Boyda's "answer on Iraq is a bipartisan commission. Jim Ryun's answer is to support the generals and the troop on the ground."

Freeman was apparently referring to Boyda's support for the Iraq Study Group, led by Republican Jim Baker (a former secretary of state) and Democrat Lee Hamilton. That study group was created by the Republican Congress last March.

¢ 4:49 p.m.: Atty. Gen. Phill Kline takes the stage.

"There is no more fundamental obligation of the attorney of our state to protect the vulnerable and the innocent against those who would harm them," he said.

He mentions Jessica's Law. Also, a cybercrimes task force that targets online predators. And his defense of the Kansas death penalty before the U.S. Supreme Court.

"Right now, there are those who are trying to hold themselves above the law by buying the office of attorney general," Kline says, defending his effort to obtain medical records from abortion clinics in what he says is an effort to go after child rapists.

¢ 4:55 p.m. Secretary of State Ron Thornburgh takes the stage. "The Chiefs won!" he announces. Big cheers.

"Don't get me wrong -- I'll go for the Chiefs applause every time."

Thornburgh, who oversees elections in the state, exhorting Republicans to get to the polls on Tuesday -- painting a dark vision of Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House and Charles Rangel as a committee chairman.

He praises Barnett, Kline and Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger. "I'm proud of this ticket," he says.

Sebelius, he says, has spent eleven-zillionty dollars on advertising.

¢ 5:07 p.m.: Freeman again. He urges the party to unify behind Republican candidates -- instead of splitting into moderate and conservative camps. If that happens, Republicans certainly win against Democrats in Kansas.

"There's more of us than there are of them," he says.

¢ 5:33 p.m.: Lights go down. Canned music -- then the canned voice of the "Let's Get Ready to Ruuuuumblllllllle!" guy. Then Van Halen. Everybody thought something was happening besides Van Halen -- but no. Only Van Halen. We're in the "killing time until the president gets here" stage of things.

Oh, and it's Sammy-Era Van Halen. We'll check in later with the Democrats to see if they more strongly favor the David Lee Roth Era. The musical questions are of great importance in this election.

¢ 5:38 p.m. Noted liberal John Mellencamp is being played over the sound system. "I fight authority, authority always wins."

¢ 5:44 p.m.: U2 is turned down -- no more music jokes. Air Force One has just landed, we're told.

¢ 5:45 p.m.: Dave Toplikar, LJW reporter, tells me he was outside a half-hour ago. The protest has grown to about 35 people, he says - including some Lawrence residents: Carlena Haney and her husband, Barney, with a hot-pink sign calling the president a "war criminal" and "God Forgive America."

Other Lawrencians: Cathy Callen, Steve Dahlberg, Ann Hamil and Bill Getz.

The crowd is doing the wave in the stands. Country music has returned.

¢ 6:05 p.m.: Reps. Todd Tiahrt and Jim Ryun take the stage, along with Sen. Sam Brownback. We're underway for the main event.

¢ 6:06 p.m.President Bush enters, to Van Halen and thunderous applause. No jacket, no tie. Blue shirt with rolled-up sleeves.

¢ 6:08 p.m.: Rep. Todd Tiahrt first -- he represents the Wichita area. "I'm here tonight because Jim Ryun has got to be elected, and you need to make that happen!" Big cheers.

He introduces Ryun.

¢ 6:09 p.m: Ryun: "It's truly a pleasure to be here tonight with the president." Introduces the president as "my good friend and fellow runner."

¢ 6:10 p.m.: Big cheer for the president.

"So Jim Ryun says, 'Do you want to race?' I said, 'No, but I want to see you re-elected to the United States Congress."

Ryun is a "compassionate conservative," the president says. "He doesn't need a poll or a focus group to tell him what to believe."

Adds: "I thank you for being here, and I'm asking you to send this good man back to the United States Congress."

¢ 6:12 p.m.: Introduces other Republicans on the stage, including Barnett and the lieutenant governor candidate Susan Wagle, as well as the other state candidates.

"We're heading to the finish line and we're asking for your help. Whatever you do, don't pay attention to the prognosticators, to the pundits ... they've forgotten that Kansans haven't gone to the polls."

Republicans, he said, "can control the House and we'll control the United States Senate as well."

GOP will win, he said, because "we share the values and the priorities of the American people."

¢ 6:17 p.m.: Says Ryun and GOP can help the farm economy and reduce foreign-oil dependency at the same time.

"In other words, we're going to use Kansas products to power our automobiles so we're less dependent on foreign oil."

And Ryun believes in family values. "He lives them. ... And he's working to prevent the institution of marriage from being redefined by activist judges."

¢ 6:19 p.m.: Pitches the success of tax cuts as a spark for a "strong and growing economy." The national unemployment rate is down to 4.4 percent. And the deficit has been cut in half "three years ahead of schedule."

"If you vote for a Democrat, you're voting for a tax increase," Bush said.

¢ 6:25 p.m.: Someday, Americans will ask: "Did we do everything in our power to win the War on Terror?"

Terrorists have no conscience. "We believe in freedom, they don't. We believe in liberty, they don't. They understand America won't change. You cannot negotiate with these people ... the best way to do our job to protect you is to face them overseas so we do not have to face them here at home."

¢ 6:27 p.m.: Promotes the Patriot Act, which he says knocked down a wall keeping law enforcement and intelligent agents from sharing information.

"You cannot wait to respond to an attack. You've got to act before the attacker."

If Al Qaeda makes a phone call to the United States, "we better understand why."

(Dave Toplikar reports: Security forces forces have just removed a man in a gray suit off the floor and up the stairs through the bleachers, dragging him part way.)

The best way to protect America, Bush says, is to send Ryun back to Congress.

¢ 6:31 p.m.: President defends invasion of Iraq. "The decision I made to remove Saddam Hussein was the right decision, and the world is better off for it."

Today, he notes, Hussein was convicted and sentenced to death. Big cheers. This, he says, is a "major achievement for this young democracy."

¢ 6:34 p.m.: "Our goal is to achieve victory in Iraq," he says, adding: "We've got a plan to do just that."

Insurgents believe the U.S. "doesn't have the will or capacity to stay in for the long run. ... we're not going to run from thugs and assassins"

¢ 6:37 p.m.: No matter your view of the war, "you owe, and everyone owes, a debt of gratitiude to the United States military."

Jim Ryun is a strong supporter of the military, Bush says.

Iraqis support a government "of, by and for the people." They're being trained to take the fight to the insurgents. And if Bush thought we couldn't succeed, he would pull troops out.

"The only way we won't succeed is if we leave before the job is done."

Iraq is a central front in War on Terror, he says, and Democrats have no plan for victory.

"I'm not saying these people are unpatriotic," Bush says. "Yes they are!" yells a man in the crowd. Bush: "I'm just saying they're wrong."

¢ 6:44 p.m.: Notes that his father fought the Japanese in World War II, but Bush has worked with Japan to solve the nuclear problem in North Korea.

"Something happened. What happened was Japan adopted a Japanese-style democracy. Liberty has the power to change an enemy to an ally."

¢ 6:48 p.m.: He goes into the litany of Democrats vs. Republicans -- on health care, security, "activist judges" and security.

"I thank you for coming! Go vote! Get your friends and neighbors to vote, and send Jim Ryun back to Congress! God bless, and God bless the United States of America!"

¢ 6:53 p.m. Well, that's it. Thanks for joining us for the live blog. Feel free to hang out in the comments section.


rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

By the way, which Attorney General's reign was it under that the death penalty was thrown out entirely?

Tychoman 11 years, 2 months ago

rhd99 calm down, you're making the rest of us look bad.

KEITHMILES05 11 years, 2 months ago

Kline is an embarassment to this state. He's such a wacko. I am in the GOP but will not vote for him or Ryun.

publicdefender 11 years, 2 months ago

Ryun needed to be ahead of Boyda now to win on Tuesday! Go Nancy!

quisp 11 years, 2 months ago

I have many questions about what's going on, but I'm not going to ask them for fear of being "disapppeared" under some obscure Patriot Act bylaws... Let's just say the Capital Journal's headlines probably won't say what I want them to say in the morning, and that's a damn shame for this country.

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

Republicans have NO plan to fix government, taxes, health care insurance costs, Iraq & the War against Terrorists! Also, Pelosi & the Democrats can & WILL fight tooth & nail to RID this country of No Child Left Behind & that dumb Medicare prescription drug law. These laws are ILLEGAL because they are UNFUNDED mandates that bring our country to further deficits & severe deficiencies in our education system. Insurance companies: WATCH YOUR BACKS!

savethedaffy 11 years, 2 months ago

Personally, I enjoyed Kline's comment as I was sitting amongst cheering Republicans: 'How are you all doing tonight? Oh, I know, I've seen your medical records.' Laughter from the crowd. Other comments like Kline's disgusted me throughout the night, particularly a comment from the woman sitting near the group I came with: 'why are you even here?' Well, excuse me for wanting to listen to the president of the united states in person rather than through a 7 second sound bite on the news. It's all about the Republicans and Democrats. And it's wrong -- "There's more of us than there are of them." I think I threw up after I heard that. I'm not a Republican. And thank god for that because I would wish upon no one the uncomfort and immense anger I felt last night. I went to hear the opposing viewpoint and I'm glad I did, as it helped me to create an even stronger opinion of my own. I'm sick of the partisian politics that our own president is involved in just as heavily as our congressmen. I couldn't even find my car in the parking lot like it was an episode of Seinfeld after the rally. I even missed my exit off of the highway because I was so fired up after last night. It's all ridiculous and first and foremost, there's got to be a limit to the number of terms these unrepresentative congressmen our own president is endorsing can serve.

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

Sorry, Joel, everyone & tychoman. I am just ready for a major defeat in Tuesday's election because the Republicans have made our country in worse shape. unfunded mandates, higher costs across the board, soaring deficits & our priorities are way off in our struggle against the bad guys that took the lives of so many of our fellow Americans. I hope the polls that were taken in months past will lead us to turn back the Bush agenda & teach him a lesson on listening more than talking. Again, my apologies, everyone & tychoman.

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

By the way, folks, what am I missing in regards to the major legislative priorities that must be addressed in the coming years? I guarantee the Republicans will not get anything done if re-elected on Tuesday. Fellow Lawrencians (hope I spelled it right), I hope we all will go vote & give our Secretary of State something to be proud of. He predicted 50% turnout, I hope we in Kansas surpass that 50% prediction. The higher the vote turnout, the more the Democrats will have in chances to win. Let's take back our great state & let's get our country back on Tuesday. Let's go get 'em.

willie_wildcat 11 years, 2 months ago

rhd99- Its all share the same sentiments that most of us share about this mess that Bush co has gotten us into. And let us not forget the Do Nothing Congress and their role in things. I am very anxious to see if the people vote with common sense and not on party lines on Tuesday. I alreay made up my mind on who I am voting for and it will not be Ryun or Kline. We need people who will do the job they were elected to do and not bow to special interest groups or extremists of any kind. Perhaps this will be the year that Kansas actually catches up with the rest of the 21st century. ;)

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

Well, thanks, Willie but I would also really like to see Kline go to prison or be disbarred from practicing law ever again. A defeat on Tuesday would be a nice start. Kline is dangerous & knows nothing about abortions. Bush & others strip funding for stem cell research. These two guys have one major flaw in their beliefs & that of their extremist party: How can one say they protect human life & yet are willing to let other human lives (like Michael J. Fox & others suffering from Muscular Distrophy dieases like Parkinson's Disease) be destroyed because they claim that stem cell research is cloning. I challenge anyone, not here per se, but else where to show me on paper & in a medical lab, that stem cell research is the same thing as cloning.

roger_o_thornhill 11 years, 2 months ago

"Freeman pitches Phill Kline, saying the attorney general has won the death penalty case before the Supreme Court..."

I guess I missed the 10 commandment amendments. Where it says "thou shalt not kill" "unless it is a really bad person" "or if it is someone who gets in the way of you doing what is RIGHT".

So, according to Kline, some killing is good and some is bad? Hmmmmm.

willie_wildcat 11 years, 2 months ago

rhd99- not a problem. Wouldnt it be nice that Kline went to prison? Being a woman I really would cringe if Kline won Tuesday...

I do not understand why they (the nuts) want to not see stem cell research go further...What if it was one of their own that could benefit from this? It really irked me that Rush "oxycontin snorting" Limbaugh bashed on Fox when he put that ad out about voting yes for stem cell research.

And yes it is sad that they claim to protect human life rather the unborn I should say but yet when it comes to a living breathing person oh well you are on your own sorry.

Oh were are the Bush groupies tonight???? Hmm it is nice that they are not around.

roger_o_thornhill 11 years, 2 months ago

Thrust your first three fingers in the air Topeka, heeeeerrrreeeee's Dubya!

Seriously though, does anyone see anything wrong with seeing politics like this: " There's more of us than there are of them," (Freeman) says."?

What's this US and THEM crap? Exactly what is he trying to instigate?

Pretty soon our "democracy" will be reduced to the likes of Thailand or Nicaragua where it is more like team loyalty than anything to do with the running of a country where elected officials are supposed to REPRESENT the people of their district--not just their supporters. Soon ideology will totally be replaced by colors and that will be all that people will know about "their" party. Elephant and the Ass. Blue and Red. What do they represent? Who cares!

SpeedRacer 11 years, 2 months ago

Thanks, ROT, I was thinking the same thing when I read Freeman's statement. Clearly, he does not see himself representing the interests of all Kansans, only those who vote for his party.

Scott Tichenor 11 years, 2 months ago

This is all pretty hilarious. The fact that Kansas is as red as a state gets in this country, and all of the Republican candidates are in trouble in the polls. So who do they bring to try to rescue them? First, Dick "don't go hunting with him" Cheney. and then the cowboy in chief, pointing his finger at us and telling us the sky is falling, the sky is falling if we don't elect our Republican majority back into office.

Man, this internets thing... I love it.

hottruckinmama 11 years, 2 months ago

i've never been to a political rally. it sounds pretty boring to me. wonder how many of our conservative posters are up their tonight?

willie_wildcat 11 years, 2 months ago

Oh Tiahart is there too huh???? Ugh he is just as bad as the stinking lot of em.

SpeedRacer 11 years, 2 months ago

Oh, yeah, this is Kansas. I forgot he was supposed to address the "farm economy." I guess no one else lives here.

willie_wildcat 11 years, 2 months ago

And Ryun believes in family values. "He lives them. ... And he's working to prevent the institution of marriage from being redefined by activist judges."

Right......And pigs have wings Jim!

Tychoman 11 years, 2 months ago

Screw their "activist judges" crap!

I just came from the Expocentre and there's probably 100 people at least lined up outside protesting. Yeah. W's real popular.

BOE 11 years, 2 months ago

" If you vote for a Democrat, you're voting for a tax increase," Bush said. "


- "A tax cut that adds to the deficit today is just a tax hike on future taxpayers."

-- Economist Milton Friedman

Jocelyn Craft 11 years, 2 months ago

applauds BOE Couldn't have said it better. At all. Ever.

And Ryun believes in family values. "He lives them. ... And he's working to prevent the institution of marriage from being redefined by activist judges."<<

And that would be a reference to the same-sex marriage issue, I take it. If so, how in the world does allowing same-sex couples the same rights as heterosexual couples do anything to change the institution of marriage for those same heterosexual couples?

I heard someone else (R-USA) on the radio the other day arguing for basically the equivalent of "separate but equal" rights for same-sex couples. (IIRC, the person was saying this condition already existed. Could be what he/she was saying needed to be put in place.) In any case, I was absolutely ready to retch. Sep. but. Equal didn't work for segregated schools, won't work here either. Just another way of denying privilege to a segment of the population that won't go away, no matter how hard those on the Right legislate.

"Go vote! Get your friends and neighbors to vote ... and God bless the United States of America!<<

1) I agree 2) please do! 3) If you go for this sort of thing, pray for it: because this country needs it, desperately.

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

WOW! Was it really under Kline that the Supreme Court of Kansas called the death penalty illegal? No wonder we have a hypocrite in the AG office. By the way, Wag the Dog Wagle, & Jim Barnett, besides school funding, what makes these two a losing team for the governorsip? I don't believe this, Sandy Praeger has not said much, & (gulp!) I have to say I support Ron Thornburgh & Lynn Jenkins, but other than that, I think I might vote Democrat all the way.

lgrant 11 years, 2 months ago

Bush + Ryun=SSDD (Same s*#@, different day.)

Redneckgal 11 years, 2 months ago

48 hours from now this whole mess will be over and we should be getting some election results. But I don't really look for it to be over easily..I bet ten bucks there will be recounts all over the place. They ain't gonna go down peacefully.

jayhawktownie 11 years, 2 months ago

wonderful job of what? inciting hatred and division both at home and abroad? being stubborn and ignorant? ignoring and blocking dissent by only speaking to friendly crowds? i guess all of the above.

Jocelyn Craft 11 years, 2 months ago

LOL right_thinker.

Oh, wait, you were serious...

(Sarcasm really is all a matter of perspective, isn't it?)

Seriously, respecting the office of the presidency (not any easy job by any stretch, Congress of his own party notwithstanding) is a good thing.

Respecting the choices of the American people (election conspiracy theories notwithstanding): also a good thing.

Respecting the results of this presidency and its effect on our position in the rest of the world: not so possible for me.

Great part about this country: we all have the right to dissent. If that goes away, I do too.

Emily Hadley 11 years, 2 months ago

So, is voting supposed to control the elections this year?

Seems a little far-fetched.

sgl8888 11 years, 2 months ago

Where did Kline run off to after his turn at the podium? I didn't see him during Bush's speech. I watched it on C-SPAN. I saw just about everyone else running for office in Kansas.

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

What do you mean by far-fetched, emily? Kline & others like him on the Bible thumping conservative side are far fetched if they honestly think that their agenda benefits the entire state, let alone, the whole country. Controlling elections is not the issue, Kline, Barnett, & the right wing extremist machine are the issues we need to resolve (not electing or re-electing them) if Kansas is to EVER become reputable in the future.

not_dolph 11 years, 2 months ago

Posted by sgl8888 (anonymous) on November 5, 2006 at 8:40 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Where did Kline run off to after his turn at the podium? I didn't see him during Bush's speech. I watched it on C-SPAN. I saw just about everyone else running for office in Kansas.

Don't you remember his memo that he wrote to his campaign staff...

Get me in and get me out. Take me to where the money people are. Don't need sit down meals - feed me slimfast...

Apparently, he had to to speak.

Redneckgal 11 years, 2 months ago

He probably sh!t himself and had to go change sgl8888.

Jocelyn Craft 11 years, 2 months ago


inciting hatred and division both at home and abroad?<<

Don't forget fear. And anonymizing, generalizing villification of The Enemy.

being stubborn and ignorant?<<

Stubbornness (a.k.a. determination) might be a handy trait in a President. It's stubbornness in the face of sense, reason and experts' informed advice that it becomes a detriment.

Ignorance, i.e., ignoring?

ignoring and blocking dissent by only speaking to friendly crowds?<<

As an isolated incident, I'd understand this one -- trying to rally support for a candidate of one's own party. But wait, wouldn't the undecided voters be the ones to try to reach?

Okay, my brain is shutting down. More later.

fletch 11 years, 2 months ago

Gee, sounds like a big fun gathering of bigoted, backwards, redneck, uneducated, bible thumping, gay bashing, war mongering, culture of fear zealots.

Sad I missed out on it. Guess I can just go to the next Klan rally and get the same effect.

If you want your children to grow up (R)etarded, vote Republican.

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

Was Kline a KKK member? He could have fooled me, he is a certified brainwashing lunatic. That's why Kansas is SO polluted at this juncture.

true_patriot 11 years, 2 months ago

I saw one guy attempting to enter the Expo Center who had tickets to the event, but he had one of those tiny Nancy Boyda stickers on his jacket, and they would not let him in, even after he offered to remove the sticker from his jacket.

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

Merrill, If Bush is considered more dangerous than Kim, can you imagine George Allen (the biggot) in the White House? YIKES!

Aimee Polson 11 years, 2 months ago

Enjoyed your blog Joel. Congrats to you or whoever was doing the typing. An impressively small number of typos.

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

Hate is a strong word, but right_thinker, Bush is NOT for life when he opposes Stem Cell research & yet his party is against abortion rights for women. You can't have it both ways. Bush is going down as the worst President in history. Kline will be known as the worst AG we've had in Kansas. We have a John Ashcroft in Kansas. Enough Already!

publicdefender 11 years, 2 months ago

What have you been smoking, right_thinker? It has "clouded" your view of reality!

Mike Blur 11 years, 2 months ago

I just saw something strange on TV tonight. Approximately 9:55 pm,during a time-out of the Colts-Pats game on KSNT-27, a Jim Ryun ad aired that contained the usual anti-Boyda propaganda ...but at the very end, curiously, the ad blared "Jim Ryun also opposed President Bush's plan for granting amnesty to illegal immigrants." Now, it's a poorly kept secret that Bush is in favor of amnesty for illegals (he speaks Spanish more fluently than he speaks English!) but I'm mildly amazed that the Ryun campaign would throw Bush under the bus the same day Bush would come to KS to stump for him.

(BTW, it's a done deal that after Tuesday, Bush's first order will be legalizing 12 million illegal immigrants. He's taking his cue from the only president in American history to grant blanket amnesty to illegals--Ronnie Reagan, who "citizenfied" 2 million illegals in 1986.)

I'd like to see that ad again. Heck, it might even be worth paying a visit to Ryun's odious campaign web site to see if it's there.

jimmiedan 11 years, 2 months ago

you guys are all doing the people of kansas a great injustice with your carrying on about the republicans. they are a big part of the reason that morrison and boyda are ahead. i know this because i have talked to a whole lot of them this year and they are good people who know that things are wrong and why. don't put them in a group when they are just like us with good hearts and minds. they are not someone to hate but someone to share thoughts with!!!

Mike Blur 11 years, 2 months ago

BTW Joel and others--the "Let's Get Ready to Ruuuuumblllllllle!" guy's name is Michael Buffer. I actually met him (very briefly) prior to a Chiefs game several years ago. He was part of the pregame show where he stoked the crowd with his famous call.

Just a bit of light trivia in this thread.

DaREEKKU 11 years, 2 months ago

I don't think it's an issue of Republican-Democrat here. Bush, no matter what party he is has done a HORRIBLE job. The party that he is supposed to be accountable to first (Republican) has not held him responsible therefore the party has lost credibility (not because they are Republican but because they have failed to act on many levels).

On a different note, (right_thinker) you shouldn't resort to bashing Public Defenders. They are part of the backbone of this nation, don't diss "low level" positions as you call them because those are the ones that lie at the core of our democracy.....that doesn't speak well for your character.

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

jimmiedan, what have the Republicans done since 2004? Nothing. What has Kline done? He has done illegal fishing expeditions against Dr. Tiller & other doctors with NO proof that abortions are illegal. Law breakers like Kline WILL go to prison & lose their law license when they have NO probable cause in their investigations. Hating them? No I don't hate them, I want them out of office.

prairiepollyana 11 years, 2 months ago

I have to laugh at some of the posters...on one hand you hate the city commission for being too liberal and on the other hand you hate the Republicans for being too think that the straight Democratic ticket will win you what you many of those "Democrats" were moderate Republicans and switched parties for election purposes? Better be careful of what you

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

Prairie, the Republicans have been more dangerous than you can possibly imagine. Ever since the debate began with Stem Cell Research & Phill Kline's illegal abortion fishing expedition, which party is the dangerous one now? Our city commission has wasted (bi-partisanlike) lots of money on stupid roundabouts that will not make traffic safer. They don't, however, conduct illegal life & death investigations without checking their facts first. I don't have the time nor the patience to pay for Phill Kline's salary when he does not go after the murderers & the tax evaders from big businesses. He goes or we continue to be the laughing stock of the nation. Take your pick, sports fans!

rhd99 11 years, 2 months ago

Joel, thanks for the blog. Enjoyed it very much. Everyone, please go vote on Tuesday, remembering, that a vote for KLINE is a slap in the face of every Kansan. I want Kansas to be the very best we can be. Kline & the others on Right Wing Extreme ends do not represent me or my views & I hope they don't represent your views either. Let's get out there on Tuesday & vote & take back our great state & tell our nationally elected leaders this is our country, & it is not for sale! Good Night & God bless America!

publicdefender 11 years, 2 months ago

right_thinker, I am an American who is concerned about the direction that this country is going under Bush et. al. He will be judged as one of the worst presidents because he has not "defended" the U.S. Constitution according to the oath that he took on January 20th.

I am glad that others (e.g., DaREEKKU) appreciate the work that public defenders do. Defending our constitutional rights is our job. We take our oath seriously, unlike Mr. Bush!

Daniel Kennamore 11 years, 2 months ago

In reference to Jimmiedan's comment...your right that grouping anyone who votes republican as some idiotic hick is not the way to go; but I'd contend that the current divisiveness is a product of the republican politicians (not voters). Bush's first campaign was about being a uniter not a divider (remember that golden oldie...whens the last time someone said Bush was a uniter or a compassionate conservative with a straight face) yet since then the Republican party has done nothing but try to divide the country. "If your not with us your against us" a perfect example of how Bush has destroyed the last half century of careful international diplomacy. As for the entire Republican party...the last election anyone who was against them was a ultra-liberal communist sodomite that killed babies. And after using gay-marriage to scare up their base...what have they done since then to prevent it besides empty rhetoric and half-baked attempts to take such far fetched measures that they know 2/3rd of the country would never agree too (amendments would take 70 percent of the country agreeing to them...). The do nothing congress is a product of the majority party going SIX years without any real check...they did nothing cuz they didn't need to in order to be reelected. Now that people are finally seeing them for what they are incumbents are being forced to run on their record ("I did nothing but the democrat thats running against me supports terrorism")...people aren't buying it anymore. The coming landslide against the Republicans is not about Us vs. them...its about the majority of the country not putting up with empty rhetoric that my novella is complete...g'night.

SpeedRacer 11 years, 2 months ago

Regardless of your party affiliation and sentiments regarding the candidates, EVERYONE needs to exercise their right to vote. VOTE!!! VOTE!!!! VOTE!!!!! VOTE!!!!!!

savethedaffy 11 years, 2 months ago

I went with an open mind, but after Kline's comment and many of Freeman's as well, I began to get a little agitated. I consider myself an Independent. There would be just as much 'blame game' going on at a Democratic party rally. None of the congressmen in office right now, not the Republicans or Democrats accurately represent the everday American citizen. I just think it's pretty sad that human beings cannot even coexist in the same room because they have opposing views, or belong to different political parties. I'm not asking you to take my comments as credible ones by any means -- take them as whatever you want. But NO, I didn't like what I heard and I don't like what the Democrats have to say right now either.

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