Senator Tom Coburn wrote an article for WSJ, The Year Washington Fled Reality. We encourage you to read the entire article, but here are some excerpts of the major points he makes.
In both the executive branch and Congress, Americans witnessed an unwinding of the country’s founding principles and of their government’s most basic responsibilities. The rule of law gave way to the rule of rulers. And the rule of reality—in which politicians are entitled to their own opinions but not their own facts, as Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan liked to say—gave way to some politicians’ belief that they were entitled to both their own opinions and their own facts.
If Congress wants to get serious, and be taken seriously, it can start by doing its job. It can debate and pass individual appropriations bills—a task that Congress has not completed in eight years.
How the nation’s leaders perform in Washington is a reflection of the country, and culture, they represent. Moral relativism and postmodern disregard of truth has been promoted by academia for decades; sometimes it seems that the best students of that thinking can be found in Washington. We live in a time when laws and rules are defined however the holders of power decree, and “messaging” is paramount, regardless how far the message is from reality.
The coming year presents an opportunity to Americans who hope for better. Despite Washington’s dysfunction, “We the People” still call the shots and can demand a course correction. In 2014, here’s a message worth considering: If you don’t like the rulers you have, you don’t have to keep them.
So the following tables are made to highlight the voting records of the incumbents running for reelection and the incumbents retiring. The voting record scores are for Heritage Action key votes. There are ten additional seats that are from states with a Partisan Voter Index (PVI) of D+4 or higher. One of these includes an incumbent Republican, Maine Sen. Susan Collins, who has a score of 28%. The moral relativism and postmodern disregard of truth are more prevalent in these 10 states, and it’s foolish to pin conservative hopes on who wins in these states.
It’s not unrealistic to have another wave election in 2014 like the one in 2010, but the Republican establishment is also capable of snatching a defeat out of the jaws of victory. The tables highlight 12 seats currently held by Democrats and 5 seats currently held by Republicans.
It would be awesome if this election produces a huge freshman class of 17 conservative Republicans that replace these 12 Democrats and 5 GOP squishes. The fight with the GOP establishment AND the Democrats makes this a daunting challenge, but hold on to the idea that “We the People” still call the shots.
|State PVI||Incumbent Running||Score|
|Wyoming R+22||Mike Enzi(R)||78%|
|Oklahoma R+19||James Inhofe(R)||89%|
|Idaho R+18||Jim Risch(R)||86%|
|Alabama R+14||Jeff Sessions(R)||79%|
|Arkansas R+14||Mark Pryor(D)||16%|
|Kentucky R+13||Mitch McConnell(R)||80%|
|Kansas R+12||Pat Roberts(R)||90%|
|Tennessee R+12||Lamar Alexander(R)||46%|
|Alaska R+12||Mark Begich(D)||13%|
|Louisiana R+12||Mary Landrieu(D)||3%|
|Texas R+10||John Cornyn(R)||86%|
|Mississippi R+9||Thad Cochran(R)||57%|
|South Carolina R+8||Lindsey Graham(R)||53%|
|South Carolina R+8||Tim Scott(R)||93%|
|North Carolina R+3||Kay Hagan(D)||6%|
|Virginia EVEN||Mark Warner(D)||3%|
|Colorado D+1||Mark Udall(D)||0%|
|New Hampshire D+1||Jeanne Shaheen(D)||9%|
|Minnesota D+2||Al Franken(D)||0%|
The table below lists the states with a retiring Senator in 2014
|State PVI||Incumbent Retiring||Score|
|West Virginia R+13||Jay Rockefeller(D)||3%|
|Nebraska R+12||Mike Johanns(R)||56%|
|South Dakota R+10||Tim Johnson(D)||0%|
|Montana R+7||Max Baucus(D)||13%|
|Georgia R+6||Saxby Chambliss(R)||57%|
|Iowa D+1||Tom Harkin(D)||0%|
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