A: The democrats have decided that Doug Hoffman is scary.

There is a method to this madness. Hoffman has not won the election yet. Expect a full-out media blitz by the Democrats in the last three days of the campaign to portray Hoffman as the reincarnation of Timothy McVeigh.

And of course now that Newt has come out for Hoffman his prospects for extra appearances on MSM shows are shot.

…if he hadn’t died in 1987.

Right now I’ve been going through a hard time and I wish he was around for advice. He never got past the 6th grade but was the wisest man I knew. He was gregarious, impulsive, generous to a fault, had an incredible capacity to drink, and liked and trusted people much too much for his own good. He could fix anything, build anything, cook anything, was physically powerful and had the love of life, God and country, his fellow man and Family inside of him.

There are too many stories about him to tell them all here, from the Ambush in the parking lot, his refusal to pay and the violence he suffered for it, his refusal to accept help from his “Fellow Sicilians” when he needed it, his quest to join the Navy, his convoluted first meeting with my mother, their odd wedding day and first day bringing her home, the fights and drinking contests at the bar, the first Capone story, The great Smoking war, the rocks and the photos, the TV up the stairs, intensive care and unending talk, the pink shirt and the Green Beret, the missing 3 million dollar ticket, The Heart Attack in the woods, The burn cream, His mother-in-law stories, and the greatest story of all his cooking of his own funeral dinner.

But as this is the anniversary of his birth rather than his death I choose the 2nd Capone story which goes like this…

Mike Capone was the cousin of Al Capone and was a soldier stationed at Ft. Devens in the 50’s. He had met my parents in a previous visit to their Bar/Resturant The Mohawk Club in Shirley mass (they sold it in 1964 and it became a dive rather quickly) and would come with a group of soldiers on a regular basis for the incredible Italian food.

One day there was a group of young local kids who came in, old enough to drive not old enough to drink, they were allowed to come into the restaurant but not the bar. The six of them started trouble and my father kicked them out. About 45 minutes later one of them showed up at the back door asking to talk to the owner. As the relationship between the club and the local police was not good (another story) my father went out to handle it. He was struck from behind (the light was out) and found himself fighting six to one. He held his own for a while but numbers started to tell and once they had him down the outcome was not in doubt.

My mother heard the racket and looked outside and saw what has happening, declining to shoot them as they were unarmed (ah a gentler time was the 50’s) she ran to the bar where Mike Capone was sitting with 5 other guys pulled on his arm saying “Mike they’re going to kill him”. When he got the story he got up from his table, when the other soldiers asked he he needed a hand his answer was: “Nah Dominic & I can handle it.”

When he got outside my father was down and the six where on him. Capone caught them by surprise. With Capone there and my father again on his feet once more the outcome was not in doubt. The six of them were sprawled all over the ground and my father and Capone left them there Mike to return to his table and my Father to clean up.

He was punctilious about being clean always wearing identical white shirts and black ties, he washed his face and changed into clean clothes (my family has a house on the premises.) and within 15 minutes was back at the bar serving customers.

These fellows were connected with the local police, and as soon as they recovered sufficiently to leave they headed straight to the police station. Within the hour a police car arrived and local police were in the place escorting the six bruised and beaten teens who pointed out their tormentor at the bar.

My father came out behind the bar with a look of incredibility on his face explaining that he indeed kicked them out of the place but that he’d been working. When the teens INSISTED that he beat them up, he turned to the officer in his clean white shirt, tie and perfectly clean groomed face and asked:

“Officer does it really look like i’ve been in a fight with six guys in the last hour?”

The officer looked at the teens and left without another word taking the teens with them.

The light that was broken in the back paid off when jumping my dad but hurt them here since they didn’t get a good look at the other guy who after they left came out of the kitchen.

So ended another evening at the place and once again the quest to drive those dirty Italians out of town and business had failed.

Compared to what he dealt with my life has been a lark and I feel guilty even complaining about it.

So happy birthday dad. I miss you a lot.

I was in the middle of writing a birthday post for my late father when I got a call from a friend in PA who told me to turn on the TV and that Scozzafava had pulled out of the race in NY-23.

This doesn’t guarantee victory for Hoffman (that’s WHY you have the election) but it means the following.

Big Winners:

Sarah Palin: She was the republican who was willing to put herself on the line with the race was “over”

Robert Stacy McCain: He was the blogger/Reporter who pushed this story and took the time to visit the district twice. That meant he was on hand for BOTH the Palin endorsement and the Scozzafava pull out.

Rush Limbaugh: He pushed and pushed this race and hit republicans for dissing conservatives.

The Tea Party Movement: They got behind Hoffman and have proved their power. Lets see the MSM spin that one.

Northeastern Conservatives: All it takes is one win to give others the courage to try.

Dump Dede blog: Need I say why?

BIG Losers:

Newt Gingrich: He stuck his neck out for the GOP rather than conservatives and got it chopped off. Say goodbye to 2012 but as long as he opposes conservatives his place on the MSM rotation gravy train is assured forever.

GOP Establishment: They attached the conservative and gave us a RINO and end up with a zero.

NRCC: Good luck raising money from conservatives now. I suspect the funds will go directly to the candidates.

Democrats: They are in a no win situation. They don’t get the cover that a Scozzafava win would have allowed them (bi-partisan votes, a House version of Olympia Snowe) and even if Owens wins they get nothing they didn’t already have, an overwhelming house majority and a new blue dog.

The MSM: They have to deal with a Palin win and or a Hoffman win. Their RINO’s who have been proclaiming that the GOP has to tack left shows its weakness. They will play the GOP civil war card but not no effect.

RINOS: They lose their argument

Tim Pawlenty: Sloppy seconds

And to Charles Johnson he gets a Nelson award:

Vote Hoffman!

Update: CNN is reporting the breaking news that a poll says Palin is not electable? Doesn’t mention NY-23 news today. Do you want to know why they are in 4th? Memorandum is on it however. CNN’s breaking news still isn’t covering it.

Update 2: Second big winner Bill Quick, two instalances on one post!

Update 3: Michelle Malkin knows who to thank. Meanwhile according to Sister Toldjah CNN discovered the story while I went down the street for breakfast and she breaks some news:

Chair Pete Sessions is now set to endorse Hoffman. Politico’s Jonathan Martin reported via Twitter that Newt Gingrich, a staunch defender of Scozzafava against conservatives who accurately described her as a liberal in sheep’s clothing, is now endorsing Hoffman and urging others to vote for him on Tuesday.

A tad late isn’t it? Meanwhile Marc Ambinder makes a good point:

Where do the rest of her votes go? CW says that most go to Hoffman, but I’m with Jonathan Martin: I think half go to Democrat Bill Owens or they stay home.

Ed Morrissey does show the race looks good for the white hats:

According to the poll, Hoffman had attracted 50% of the Republican vote, while Owens had 2/3rds of the Democrats. Hoffman leads Owens among independents, 40%-35%, and the remaining 15% supporting Scozzafava will almost certainly break more towards Hoffman than Owens. Owens will likely get more of Scozzafava’s Democratic supporters, but she only had 11%, while 14% have already gone to Hoffman. Hoffman and Owens had a near-even split of the opposition in Scozzafava’s regional stronghold of Jefferson/Lewis/St. Lawrence counties, but I’d be surprised if Hoffman didn’t pick up more in those areas of disaffected Scozzafava voters, too.

The race isn’t over until the people actually vote. Various bloggers point out that it’s all down to the voters now. Meanwhile the democrats make a tactical mistake:

Politico reports that the Biden rally will be Monday in Watertown:

The visit by Biden underlines how badly national Democrats want to snatch this seat, Republican-held since before the Civil War, from the GOP. But it also reflects Democrats’ 11th-hour efforts to avoid a clean sweep Tuesday of the three mostly closely-watched races.

By deploying Biden it makes any defeat an administration defeat. This is a lot of risk for little reward, this suggests fear of giving Sarah Palin any kind of victory.

Update 4: Robert George gets it:

Outside observers who want to dismiss Palin do so at their peril. But, there appears to be a reason that her basketball-playing nickname was “Barracuda.” Recall she was the one who coined (or at least made viral) the phrase “death panel” during the health care fight during the summer — forcing Democrats and the White House onto the defensive. Whether Palin is doing all this for PR purposes (her book comes out in three weeks) or being reckless in her political rhetoric, the fact is she is having an impact on the broader debate — and continuing to resonate with her party’s base.

Mitt Romney? Not so much. His voice hasn’t been heard during the battle over health care. And then, Thursday he gave the vaguest statement on the race:

“I have chosen not to endorse the Republican candidate in New York’s 23rd District,” Romney told reporters while campaigning in Virginia for Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell. “That should speak a certain amount of volume. I can’t endorse our candidate in that race.”

Yeah, Mitt, that does speak “a certain amount of volume.” It says that you’re willing to campaign for a gubernatorial candidate who has had the Virginia race in the bag for months — but not make a controversial, yet, dynamic decision in a race that would have significant ripples across the country. Palin (and Tim Pawlenty quickly following the former Alaska governor) recognized where the base’s train was going and quickly got on board. Romney missed the train — and missed the opportunity to take a significant role in a tough internal ideological debate that his party is undergoing. Even if Romney endorsed Scozzafava (as former Speaker Newt Gingrich did), at least he would have made a principled decision and could have articulated his reasons for it.

Instead, he looks completely wishy-washy.

Edisto Joe does too:

Anyone who doubts Sarah Palin as an up and coming major player on the political scene better find a doctor for a reality check.

Conservatives for Palin should be talking victory laps, Intrade sure looks good too. Meanwhile Riehl World view spares some sympathy for Dede:

I’ve no ill will toward her. She had a long, productive career as an elected official. I won’t knock her for that, even if I found some of her thinking to be wrong. Hopefully she can carry on in her career at the local level for now. I don’t see why not. These must have been incredibly stressful times for her.

She might be a nice lady and good to kittens, she was just the wrong choice for this position. David Frum’s new majority links to the Politico story but hasn’t been heard from in two days on the race. There is news; David Frum has joined CNN.com and CNN is now in last place. Make of that what you will.

Speaking of Frum et/al National review has a bonanza, the biggest piece is a word from Rush Limbaugh:

“Hmmm… I thought the Era of Reagan was over? Who was it that said that? Oh yeah, the smart people on our side who told us the only way we could win was with moderate/liberal candidates like Scozzafava. Hmmm…”

Jim Geraghty sees good signs too:

A guy in the know, who’s helping out with pro-Hoffman efforts up there, tells me, “Of the 20 percent or so who supported Dede, we think 70 percent are registered Republicans. We are focusing on them. Hoffman has run an anti-Washington, stop Nancy Pelosi/Harry Reid campaign, so that’s the message we’re continuing to push.”

He adds, “All the Dede resources from RNC et al got pushed to New Jersey, by the way, they didn’t stay around to help.” (Christie probably needs it more.)

While Hoffman reaches out to Dede:

“I will value a relationship with her, using the knowledge and experience she has to help me in representing this district,” says Hoffman. Working with Scozzafava, he adds, is akin to working with all Republicans to help forward conservative and fiscally-responsible policies. “In the last week, I’ve had many senior Republicans come to my aide and endorse me,” he says. “Over 25 congressional Republicans have helped and endorsed me, plus numerous presidential hopefuls.”

And Rich Santorum tries to extend the metaphor to Jersey.

We are faced with another three-way race for the governorship of New Jersey. The state of New Jersey is in a free fall under the inept leadership of Jon Corzine. Would I ever consider supporting the Independent candidate Chris Daggett there? Perhaps, if I thought, in these final days, the situation there were anything like it was in NY-23. But it is not. If you take a look at the Real Clear Politics poll average, Daggett is at 12 percent while Corzine and Christie are tied at 41 percent. What has been clear in all of the polls is that Corzine can’t break out of the low 40s in support.

Daggett, meanwhile, isn’t a Libertarian or a Socialist. He isn’t carrying the banner for a cause or a party that he has embraced. He is running, I suspect, because he knows that another four years of Corzine would be a continuing train wreck for New Jersey and he thinks he could do a better job than Chris Christie.

Like Scozzafava, Daggett was a liberal Republican in the Tom Kean mold (Daggett worked for Kean) in New Jersey. Unlike Scozzafava, he left the party to join another cause, his own. Like Scozzafava, Daggett is not going to win the election on Tuesday. Scozzafava withdrew because she put what is best for her district and her country above her personal aspirations. Let’s see if Daggett can exhibit the same selflessness.

I wouldn’t bet the farm on it.

A: Robert Stacy McCain still gets instalances.

In fact not only does he still get instalances the lance goes to his American Spectator stuff which is a direct source of income and raises his stature and value at the magazine. This is due to his key work in the Ny-23 race (Vote Hoffman).

Meanwhile Mr. Johnson is reduced to soliciting donations on every single post rather than doing something like, helping to raise funds for Project Valour-It. (Donate at the link at the top BTW) Alas how the mighty have fallen!

And his foes don’t just get instalances they get Rush Lances too, and not secondary ones like I did.

Charles please look at yourself and see what you’ve become.

Commentator BSR defends Mike Huckabee non-endorsement of Hoffman in comments and links to this post. It is worth quoting:

If Huckabee agrees so much with Hoffman, the conservative bloggers wail, why doesn’t he officially endorse him?

I answer that question with a question of my own. Would these same bloggers be asking that question if it were a Democratic candidate that was the more conservative in this race?

No. They wouldn’t.

Mike Huckabee is the leading contender for the 2012 Republican party nomination. If he officially endorsed a non-Republican candidate he would be running counter to his party – indeed some would say such action serves to legitimize and strengthen a rival party – and you can bet your next paycheck he’d be hearing about it in 2012.

It’s not Huckabee’s fault the party can’t field a respectable candidate in New York. Furthermore, Huckabee is a man of the people who is fully aware that his personal opinion is plenty (heck, it may even be better) to help voters make a decision.

So, the story remains, Mike Huckabee didn’t endorse a non-Republican.

Not a bad point if want to stay in good with the party, Mitt Romney for example is staying out of it, but the party is less popular than conservatism. There is a much better point to be made that my fellow Blue State Republican does NOT make.

The point would be the timing. Any endorsement would be appear to be a “me too” endorsement so at this point it is moot.

A great example is Pawlenty v Palin. When Palin endorsed Hoffman was in 3rd place but showed promise. She was talking a huge political risk, not only in angering the main party but in backing a losing horse and not only a losing horse but a THIRD PLACE horse in a three horse race. If Hoffman came in a poor 3rd the media would be jumping all over her. As I blogged Stephen Stromberger at the Washington post was practically giddy at the possibility. Margaret Carlson gives another example:

Scozzafava fails to meet Palin’s requirements for a good Republican because of her moderate position on gay marriage and abortion. While she says she won’t vote for new taxes, Palin doesn’t believe her. Friending Hoffman on Facebook, Palin wrote that the best thing about him is that he’s “not been anointed by any political machine” and stands for bedrock Republican principles. Invoking Ronald Reagan, Palin added that he knew that “blurring the lines wasn’t an appropriate way to win election.”

Put aside that Palin is violating Reagan’s cardinal rule not to speak ill of a fellow Republican. Palin isn’t a stickler for details. Her incursion into NY-23 puts into stark relief the schism in the party that’s been brewing like a tea bag since the party’s loss in November.

One-time rogue Newt Gingrich, in the midst of his periodic dithering over whether to run for president, went nuclear over her purity test. “This idea that we’re suddenly going to establish litmus tests, and all across the country, we’re going to purge the party of anybody who doesn’t agree with us 100 percent — that guarantees Obama’s reelection. That guarantees Pelosi is speaker for life.”

Yet despite Google’s love of all stories anti Palin Hoffman is now poised to win giving her the rewards from the risk. Pawlenty seeing that the game had changed found himself forced to follow her lead as did other republicans. They became followers. It made him look like Moe pushing Curley and Larry into a room.

Huckabee meanwhile made his preference to Hoffman clear so a official endorsement will only make him weak while his holding back will help him with the establishment. Strategically the status quo is his best move and it is not dishonorable…

…he is still not going to win in 2012 although the MSM will favor him over Palin if she runs, and will favor Romney over him if she doesn’t.

Vote Hoffman!

A: Gay Patriot has endorsed:

That all changed upon learning from the Wall Street Journal’s John Fund that Scozzafava was “the most liberal member of the GOP caucus in the state legislature, scoring a 15% rating on the Conservative Party’s scorecard.” And she’s not just liberal on state issues, she is also liberal on national issues as well, supporting the Democrats’ spendthrift “stimulus” and their “card check” legislation.

At a time with record growth in federal spending, record deficits and an ever-expanding federal government, we cannot afford another spendthrift federal legislator, least of all one who calls herself a Republican. We need to hold the line on federal spending and cut, not expand, government regulation. We could find no convincing evidence that the Republican nominee in NY-23 is committed to that small government conservative agenda.

That is why we at GayPatriot join other “grassroots conservatives” in endorsing Doug Hoffman for Congress in the special election to be held next Tuesday, November 3 in New York State’s 23rd Congressional District. We believe the Conservative candidate will do a better job in standing up to the big spending/big government policies put forward by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her Democrats and support a real reform agenda, cutting back on the size of the federal government, reducing the scope of its regulatory authority.

We can all go home now.

Vote Hoffman.

Because of Pataki, they haven’t mentioned that the key endorsement was Palin.

The Pataki endorsement is late but it comes on the last weekend AND he is a NY governer. This is going to make a ton of difference, but remember no matter what the Telegraph says:

Perhaps the most significant intervention has been by Governor Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota, a mainstream Republican who many party insiders believe has the most plausible claim to the party’s 2012 presidential nomination for a contest in which President Barack Obama could well be vulnerable.

it is the Palin endorsement that made everyone else move, they do conceede that she was first.

Sarah Palin, another possible 2012 candidate and a darling of the Right, had already announced on Facebook that she was backing Mr Hoffman. “Doug Hoffman stands for the principles that all Republicans should share: smaller government, lower taxes, strong national defense and a commitment to individual liberty,” she wrote.

This is an English paper so it can be excused to some degree meanwhile on the Pataki endorsement:

Mr. Pataki announced his support for Mr. Hoffman at a Conservative Party fundraiser at the New York Athletic Club. Mr. Pataki said he has a farm in the 23rd congressional district and I know that district inside and out.

John Bolton, a former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, also backed Mr. Hoffman at the event.

While Huckabee is being quiet:

While former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has also declined to endorse Hoffman in the race, on Wednesday he said, “I have chosen not to endorse the Republican in the 23rd.”

“Now we need to ask about Romney, why won’t Huckabee endorse, etc.,” Erick Erickson, the editor and founder of the influential RedState blog, wrote earlier this week.

“I’m willing to give till Wednesday for candidates to get on,” he wrote. “After Wednesday morning, it’s just for show.”

RedState speculated that ongoing tensions with former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson, a former Huckabee GOP primary foe who has endorsed Hoffman, have kept Huckabee from weighing in. Huckabee is widely thought to be at odds with Thompson over the senator’s refusal to drop out of the 2008 contest until well after he was a viable candidate.

This is going to be the story of the year no matter how it ends.

Update: The Other McCain is there for the kill, and Morning Joe seems to have steered away from it. There is a Mass for my father this morning so I’ll only be watching for a few more minutes so I don’t know if they will go back to it. They didn’t make a lot of fuss about Palin but I suspect they will make some noise about Pataki.

But just remember that if you listened to Charles Johnson (peace be upon him) you would think there was nothing going on. McCain has owned this story and if you follow him so do you. Professional reporters, don’t leave home without em.

Oh forgot to say: Vote Hoffman!

My mother is the quintessential Sicilian. There are people she doesn’t like or care for, but she is very proper in public concerning them as long as she isn’t questioned directly. She always taught me the value of being able to publicly associate with your enemies. And with enemies you need to establish “neutral ground” such as Church or a funeral where you can be friendly and not let your personal enmity harm or inconvenience others.

There were also other bounds, you would not hurt a foes family or attempt to cost them their livelihood. On shared occasions such as sporting events when you both cheered for the same team it was even acceptable to celebrate together and most importantly there were some rumors and accusations that were so beyond the pale that you didn’t repeat them even about your foes. I saw her do this with people that had directly hurt and insulted her publicly. It was amazing to see.

Most of this was taught by example. Unfortunately (or fortunately) for me I tended to take my fathers example instead. He liked and got along with everyone and as long as they didn’t mean harm to his family he would help anyone. At his funeral I never saw so many people and neither did the funeral home guy for any non celebrity. (He even cooked his own funeral dinner but that’s another story…)

This is one of the reasons why I have taken such a hard line on Charles Johnson and lgf. His accusations against Robert Stacy are not only contrary to the personal experiences of people with actual expereince but it puts his ability to support his wife and family at risk.

Banning people from comments is childish, the comments on Jumping in Pools are childish an revealing, but the actions on the gentleman from Maryland are despicable and continue to be. (This doesn’t even count his actions against Pam Geller, Gates of Vienna et/al).

As I’ve said I’ve never met Charles so I don’t know his motivations, how he thinks, if he is having personal problems that lead to this stuff or anything, but right now I must say I don’t care much for him.

That said he has not yet crossed two particular bright lines that are significant.

He has not crossed over to opposition to Israel vs the Palestinians.

He has not crossed over to the defeat caucus concerning the radical Islam in general and the war in particular.

These are both important lines not only because of what they represent but because unlike some who support the above positions he has the facts and without a question knows better.

As long as those two lines are not crossed his chance of redemption is still intact and I will hope for it while still teasing him over his foolishness and chiding him severely for his offensives against a man I call friend.

Once those lines are crossed, once he actively supports the other side in war then all bets are off. Over time this will be the true test of him and if he just being petulant or if he is doing wrong.

I hope I’m wrong but I have a horrible feeling that this administration will very soon put this to the test.