Chaffetz: Principled Representation

Last night I took the opportunity to attend a “cottage” meeting with Jason Chaffetz and Carl Wimmer at the Riverton Library.  Again, my enthusiasm for these two candidates was renewed.

I have worked on only three campaigns in my entire life.  Okay, I am still relatively young, and three is probably more than most people work on.  However, my point is that I won’t campaign for a candidate unless I believe that candidate has the same principles as I do.

That’s why I am working on the Chaffetz campaign.  He speaks to the things that are important to me.

Jason Chaffetz is a fiscal conservative.  He backs it up by the way he has run his campaign.  Debt free.

Jason Chaffetz is principled in his approach to serving Utah.  He told us how he was approached by an unnamed legislator who offered him a seat on a prominent (my words not Chaffetz’s) committee if he was able to raise a large sum of money for the Republican Party.  While the carrot dangled in front of him, Chaffetz simply knew that he wouldn’t bite.  He wasn’t willing to buy his way in politics.

This is huge to me.  Chaffetz isn’t afraid to go against the flow.  It has been known for a long time that things need to change in Washington.  Finally, we have a nominee who will fight for that change.

Jason Chaffetz will fight for a diverse energy policy.  This includes drilling for oil in the United States, developing energy technologies, and creating safe nuclear power.  It’s refreshing to hear that from a candidate.

Jason Chaffetz will protect our nation.  He will provide our soldiers with better benefits to help the best to keep up the fight.  He will protect our borders by fixing legal immigration and keeping those with out permission out of our land.

I am sure that many of you have heard this before about Chaffetz.  And I really don’t want to repeat myself too much.  However, I am reinvigorated in my support for Chaffetz, that I want you to take the time to find out for yourself.

If what I have said hasn’t helped you then check out the campaign website.  But more importantly, take some time to meet with Jason Chaffetz the next time he is in your area.

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Cannon Says I am “Harsh, Boorish”

I have been giving Chris Cannon the benefit of the doubt these past few months. I wasn’t willing to vote for him, but I was willing to give him the respect that should be given honorable people.

However, that respect is all over. No more.

I can’t believe it, but Chris Cannon has called me and those who joined me into voting for Jason Chaffetz “harsh” and “boorish.” Maybe the fact that I didn’t know what boorish meant is a sign that I am. But it is just plain rude to refer to people as such.

The sense that I am getting is that Republican leader ship is disconnected from it’s voters. Cannon’s comments are only a part of it. Apparently, as the article suggests. Bennett and Hatch are disconnected too. Oh, but that was a given.

However, LaVarr Webb agrees stating that these are only localized issues. If they are so localized how come President Bush has one of the lowest ratings in history, and why isn’t Cannon the first incumbent this year to lose his seat.

It’s time for the Republican Party to wake up. They need to realize that it isn’t just the far right wing of the party that is tired of their antics. It is the average citizen that wants to get back to the truly conservative values.

Before I close this, I have a couple of other thoughts. First, what is this that Chris Cannon is saying about not knowing who Jason Chaffetz is? If that is true, then no wonder he lost the race. How can you run a campaign against someone and not do your research? That is either an out-right lie, or Cannon is a complete idiot.

Finally, is it me, or does Chris Cannon sound like he is supporting the Democrat candidate? Maybe he is trying to imply that a vote for Chaffetz made it easier for a Democrat to win (which is true). But it doesn’t guarantee them a win.

I thought that Cannon had class. But it is obvious, that if he did, he lost it when he lost the race in the primary.

What Does Chaffetz’s Win Mean?

As with many of us in the grassroots initiative that helped to secure Jason Chaffetz the Republican nomination yesterday. We are on a high and very excited to see our candidate win. Like Jason, I thank Congressman Cannon for his years of service. Although Cannon didn’t represent me in everything, he did a good job in many ways.

Over this past weekend, I have been thinking about what Chaffetz win means. A lot of these thoughts were sparked by the Bob Lonsberry endorsement that I read on Saturday.

This column by Lonsberry really got me thinking that Chaffetz win could really mean a return to conservative
principles by the Republican Party. This is what I want. This is what we need. Our constitution has hung by a thread long enough. It is time that we start fighting for it in a real way.

Chaffetz’s win could be the start of this movement.

The Republican Party won in the Reagan Years because of our adherence to the core conservative values. Since then there has been a move to the center. I have assumed it was because they felt the centrist position will win. But it hasn’t done us well.

Chaffetz’s win send the message that we the party realize that. We want a more conservative front. We need to get back to the Constitution and fight for our freedoms.

Now is the time to take the Party (especially here in Utah) back to its conservative roots. The movement has started, let’s keep the ball rolling.

Bob Lonsberry to Endorse Jason Chaffetz

After yesterday’s post, I don’t know if I should be eating crow or claiming bragging rights on this. But Bob Lonsberry on Monday will be making an official endorsement of Jason Chaffetz on Monday through his web site and I am sure even on the Radio.

This has renewed my faith in Bob. I am not sure what brought about the change. But his article might give some clues:

Jason Chaffetz is a Ronald Reagan conservative. Chris Cannon is a George W. Bush conservative.

And that distinction is the difference which has divided and diffused the Republican Party and the conservative movement. A brief season of power corrupted the Republican Party and has now cost it both its influence and its soul.

Chris Cannon is part of the regime that failed.

And while he could easily serve out the rest of his life in Congress, and do useful work on a variety of issues, he would do so as just one more of the Washington compromisers. His infatuation with the process of governing has drowned out his commitment to cause.

It’s not that he lacks the courage of his convictions, it’s that he has grown unsure of his convictions. That suits him very well to fit in in Washington, where he is indistinguishable from the big-name Republicans who have endorsed him, but it leaves him oddly out of sync with patriotic and passionate work-a-day Americans in his district.

Chris Cannon is a Doug Wright Republican. Jason Chaffetz is an Ezra Taft Benson Republican.

Chris Cannon is a good man.

But Jason Chaffetz is the better choice.

As the Republican Party prepares for a season in the wilderness, Jason Chaffetz is a voice to cry in the wilderness. He is the man to stand in the well of the House, even if he’s only speaking to a C-SPAN camera, and preach the truth.

As much as I want to produce more of this. I really don’t have permission to print this much. I just use it to show that Bob has finally seen things the way that I do. While Chris Cannon is a good man. While he has served us well for the past 12 years. It is time that we get right of the Bush Republicans and return to the Reagan Republicans of yesterday.

This is awesome news for me. I hope that this is enough to get those fence sitters to realize like Bob and I do that this is about returning the party and this country back to what made us so great.

So, what made Bob change his mind. I honestly don’t know. I am inclined to believe that after interviewing both Jason Chaffetz and Chris Cannon yesterday (MP3), that Bob realized that principle mattered more than anything else.

My wife insists that it was because Bob read my post yesterday and I swayed him. I am inclined to denounce this assertion, but my stat counter makes it seem plausible.

Num City Region Country Name

20 Salt Lake City Utah United States United States

8 Mapleton Utah United States United States

7 Orem Utah United States United States

6 Orangeville Utah United States United States

5 Rochester New York United States United States

Bob Lonsberry lives in Rochester, New York. So, these could very will be his visits to my site. Or more likely, it is a visit from one of his fans in New York. But it does cause me to wonder a bit.

What ever the reason, this is good news to me. I can listen to Bob now without feeling that he has compromised himself. Something, up until this week, I didn’t think that Bob would ever do.

Further, I am glad that the man I support for Congress has the support of one of the men I like to listen to on a regular basis (or as Bob likes to call us “friends”). I look forward to Tuesday’s vote. Because I believe that Chaffetz can win this.

Convention Recap

Well, I know that this is a couple of days old, but I had such a good time at the convention, that I want to record my experience for future reference. And I am hoping that it will be enjoyable for everyone else to read.

5:20am
My day started with a simple question from my wife. “What time are you planning on leaving?”

“5:00.”

“You better get up then.”

I jump out of bed skip the shower, get dressed an head out the door. Stopping only because I forgot my Chris Cannon Breakfast pass.

6:00am (or there about)
Meet up with several people from the Chaffetz campaign who are there to put signs up. By this late time, most of it was done, so I did a lot of standing around. Until they finally opened the doors to let people into the halls.

I placed a couple of signs, but not really much. Eventually, I met up with a few campaign volunteers and I helped to put up a few large triangles to create a larger presence. It was good to see so many people involved and excited about the campaign.

7:00am
I was really starting to get bored at this point. It didn’t seem like there was much going on, so I decided to take my t-shirts and start waiting in credentials line. My first impression was the poor kids who were handing out bags to the delegates for David Leavitt. No one seemed interested in their bags.

I myself didn’t even bother to get one. Perhaps I should have had pitty on them, but I really didn’t care to carry the bag around, and I didn’t care for the “stuff” that was in the bag.

7:30am
Despite the fact that the credentials were supposed to be open at 7:00, the line didn’t start moving until around 7:30. Once I got to the front of the line I realized that I (and a few of the men in front of me) was in the wrong line. Fortunately, the lady guarding the wall between the two areas had pitty on us, and let us in.

I quicking picked up my credentials and I almost walked out without my ballot, because the men checking me in forgot to give it to me. They caught their mistake before I got to far, and I received a ballot before leaving.

7:45am
Picked up a few more t-shirts and a few flyers to help hand out at the door. Most people were pretty receptive to receiving the information, but a few were rather rude. But so be it, I was happy to put up with a little crap to help support Chaffetz.

I really didn’t like one of the flyers. Some of the statements seemed risky. But it appears that they were well substantiated (or verifiable). But it was an interesting statement about where David Leavitt stands on immigration. And if immigration is an important issue to a delegate, this could help them to make their decision.

9:00am
It’s starting to get cold, and I am getting hungry, because I haven’t taken advantage of the Cannon pass. However, the Huntsman booth was within sight of were I was, and the appeared to have some good stuff. So, I handed my flyers to some fellow volunteers, and I went to have some breakfast.

At breakfast, I had some good conversation with some fellow delegates on various candidates, and it was fun to talk to them. I also stopped and talked to Kent Winder from my old Stake to see how things were there. He didn’t remember me, but he did recognize me. That’s okay, because I really didn’t have that much interaction with the Winder Family while I lived in the Stake they lived in.

9:30am
Went inside, because I needed to warm up. I manned some of the booths and helped hand out more t-shirts, button, and flyers about Chaffetz. It was great to see the group of delegates huddled around Chaffetz, asking him questions and learning what he stood for. You could see that there was a genuine interest in what Chaffetz was saying. Whether that interest translated into votes was soon to be shown.

This time was also the first that I heard about the possibility of Chaffetz to garner 60% in the convention. That struck me as a little ambitious, but I was hopeful to see it happen. Because based on past primaries, Chaffetz will have a tough time against Cannon.

10:00am
Found a seat in the Salt Lake County Section of the floor. I found a few Chaffetz supports to sit with, but I didn’t know any of them, but they were friendly enough to sit with.

Eventually, they got to the point that I was eager to get too. We separated into our separate districts to hear from the candidates and to start casting ballots.

Stone Fonua was interesting. I can sum up his talk with one word. “Peacemaker.” Ummm… Interesting talk, and not very inspiring. Seven minutes felt like a half hour.

Joe “NPC” Ferguson (can someone tell me what NPC means) was at least better to listen to. But frankly, you could tell the he was a one issue candidate, who didn’t offer much in the name of a well-rounded candidate.

David Leavitt started with a syrupy video about dreams, values, family, and hope. Then he gave his “I am a Statesman” talk. That made one wonder if they had accidentally arrived at a Barrack Obama campaign. If one were to vote strictly on emotions, then they would have to vote for Leavitt. He really did a lot of work to pull at heart strings. But as usually there didn’t seem to be a whole lot of substance to his talk. Just like all of the balloons that he dropped from the ceiling. Trust me the balloon drop was very anti-climatic.

Jason Chaffetz hit several balls out of the proverbial park. He started out very strong. His talk was by far the most issues based talk. He covered all of the bases (to continue to baseball metaphor): illegal immigration, fiscal responsibility, our national security and more. The audience was clapping and generally showing a lot of support for Chaffetz. The energy level went from a hum to an all out party during Chaffetz’s speech.

Chris Cannon was better than Leavitt, but he couldn’t compete with Chaffetz. Like Leavitt, Cannon started out with a video, but it wasn’t sugary sweet. It was mostly filled with endorsements from various individuals included President Bush, Senator Hatch, and others. When Cannon spoke from the pulpit, he addressed a few issues, and did an okay job.

Round One Voting (Sorry, but I really started to lose track of time, but this was around 12:00pm)
I headed up the stares to cast my first ballot. It was obviously cast for Chaffetz, and I was great to place a ballot for someone I can honestly support.

The interesting thing about the voting was that after I had dropped by ballot in the box (I was little shocked to see that we are still using dangling chads), I walk directly passed Chris Cannon. He was talking to some reporter; I really wasn’t paying attention to who. He stopped his conversation with the report, and turned to me and said, “When Chaffetz is out, I hope that I can get your vote.”

Not grasping the full extent of what he said and being a little taken a back by any comment from Cannon, I stupidly replied, “We will have to see.” I wish that I could have said something more along the lines of. “It won’t come to that.” Or better yet, “I hope that when you get out of the voting, that you will vote for Chaffetz.” But it’s too late now.

The wait for round 1 results, was bearable. There were several other candidates and issues to study up on and look over. However, it was starting to get hard to sit and wait. Especially after they announce the results:

Stone Fonua: 4 ( .37 percent)- eliminated
Joe Ferguson: 49 (4.54 percent) – eliminated
David Leavitt: 220 (20.37 percent)
Jason Chaffetz: 469 (43.43 percent)
Chris Cannon: 338 (31.30 percent)

It was exciting that not only did “my” candidate win the first round. He had a whopping 43% of the vote. The rumors that I heard about 60% were starting to look more realistic.

Round Two Voting
After hearing from candidate for the other offices, and make some informed (and some not-well informed) decisions. I cast my ballot again for Jason Chaffetz, and for the other varied candidates who I thought would do a the best job.

I was forced to walk by the concession stands, but I didn’t give into temptation. I eventually went through the hall that didn’t have the balloting booths, and there I found Chris Cannon dishing out Pizza. Thanks for the slice. It was good, and still very hot.

After the slice, I went over by the Chaffetz booth (which was close to one of the Leavitt booths, and I couldn’t help but notice the face of dejection in the volunteers for Leavitt. I even saw Leavitt himself, and he too was cast down. He was trying to hold his head up, but you could just see that he couldn’t believe the results.

I also took this down time to look up so old friends. I knew that KH was going to be there, so I asked several people if they knew her, but to no avail. Then I looked up at just the right time and found her. So, I made my way across the section of chairs, and we had a fun little how have you been chat.

I also saw some people who lived in my ward while growing up (then lived in my stake a few years back). So I took a moment to say hi to CP, LP, and DP. I couldn’t help but notice that they were wearing David Leavitt t-shirts, so I boldly asked them to vote for Chaffetz, if Leavitt didn’t survive round two. LP agreed that she absolutely would. Because she was completely against Cannon.

The wait to hear the results of round two seemed twice as long as for round one. But I gather that it really wasn’t that bad. Just sitting through the debates about party constitution and bylaws was boring.

Fortunately, the monotony was broken by the violation of floor rules from Leavitt or Cannon or both. As has been well published on the Internet. Approx. 100 teenage volunteers from the Leavitt campaign came out onto the floor carrying Cannon signs. They were reminded of the rules, and then escorted politely off of the floor. In my opinion, it was a gross display of Leavitt’s lack of statesmanship.

I was willing to give Cannon the benefit of the doubt and assume he had nothing to do with it. But that benefit was quickly removed when I saw Cannon and Leavitt walk onto the floor side-by-side shaking hands and I am assuming encouraging people to vote for Cannon. It was then that I was sure Cannon had shot himself in the foot, and I knew that Chaffetz had 60% of the vote.

Finally, after what seemed like forever, they announced the results of the the second round of voting:

David Leavitt: 161 (15.39 percent) – eliminated
Chris Cannon: 356 (34.03 percent)
Jason Chaffetz: 529 (50.57 percent)

Round Three Voting
Before I had a chance get up to the ballot boxes, I had several people come up to where I was and ask people near by what they thought of the Leavitt support Cannon move. And the over all consensus was that they were put off by it. It was wrong and they didn’t like it.

While I was in line waiting to cast my ballot I also listened to what people had to say. And while some were quiet, there were several who were vocal about their concern over the move.

After balloting, I quickly stopped off at the Chaffetz booths and talk to a couple of friends on the campaign (KH and AL). They agreed with me. They all felt that Leavitt and Cannon had managed to shoot themselves in the foot and that we were going to take 60%. They might have been less enthusiastic than I, but they had generally agreed.

Jason Chaffetz arrive at the booths while we were there, and all of his supporters applauded his entrance. You could see the humility in his eyes and body language. He was grateful for our support, and moved that we were so excited to see him. I was close enough to hear what he said, but he talked a little bit, then I had to leave. So, I said my good byes and headed out the door.

Just as I was leaving, I saw my friends of my home ward (CP and LP). I asked her as a Leavitt supporter what she thought of the action on the floor. And she said that she felt betrayed. I am pretty sure hers was one of the voted that went to Chaffetz on the third round.

Sometime after 4:30pm
On the drive home I listened to the radio hoping to hear the results. But there was nothing. When I got home, I turned on the TV for some results. I saw nothing.

Finally, I hopped on the Internet and found the results at LeadershipThatDelivers.com and found that Chaffetz missed the boat by less than 1 percent.

Jason Chaffetz: 563 (59.01 percent)
Chris Cannon: 391 (40.99 percent)

AGGHHHH!!!! It was frustrating.

I quickly typed up an email to Chaffetz’ Campaign manager and asked what she wanted me to do next. Then I started my focus on Mother’s Day, because my dear wife gave up a lot for me to do what I did today.