Saturday, February 13, 2010
Candidate for Congress Jeff Smith - A Tea Party Republican Worth Looking At
The Instapundit, Glenn Reynolds has a column in today's Wall Street Journal recounting what he saw at last week's Tea Party Convention in Nashville. The whole thing is worth your time to read but one fact he noted is that there are people stepping up all over the country to mount primary challenges to sitting Republicans, typically because the imcumbent is perceived to be too comfortable or out-of-touch or not voting the way we expect Republicans to vote or all of the above.
I recently met one such candidate for the House seat now held by Jeff Flake (R- AZ 6) at a local Tea Party meeting. His name is Jeff Smith. In the interests of full disclosure, Jeff offered me the position of Political Director for his campaign. I'm very flattered by the offer but I declined as I have a rather demanding full-time job and one of them would have to suffer. It can't be the paying job.
I've talked to Jeff at some length and I think he would make an excellent representative. He has a background in business and shares the views of most Tea Partiers that government has gotten too big, spends too much is unresponsive and as Glenn points out "has a habit of rewarding failure with handouts and punishing success with taxes and regulation." That shouldn't strike anyone with any common sense as a good way to produce a prosperous society.
What about Jeff Flake? On balance I think Congressman Flake has been a good representative but the common complaint about him locally is the one noted above that he is falling out of touch with the district. He originally ran in 2000 promising to spend only three terms in Congress. He is now running for his sixth. He's been good on earmarks, he doesn't take them, but is not very strong on the border security/illegal immigration question. That one is a big deal in Arizona as illegal immigration costs the taxpayers of this state billions. He also comes from a public affairs/ think tank background, not a business one. People who have at least worked in the private sector, if not actually run a business, score extra points with me. It's just time for some fresh blood.
Go and visit Jeff Smith's campaign website. His positions on the issues that are important to me, stopping socialism/wealth redistribution, limited government and states rights and getting government stuffed back within its Constitutional limits, seem to align quite well with my small "L" libertarian outlook and I intend to support his candidacy.