Sunday Night Quarterbacking

**UPDATE at 4:25pm 10/5/15**
I SHOULD BE on Omaha’s KPTM FOX42 at 9pm tonight to (generally) discuss Senator Sasse’s Tweets and social media in politics.



Nebraska’s junior United States Senator, Ben Sasse, was tweeting last night, during the Cowboys – Saints game.

And he delved into politics.
House of Representatives politics.

And he…veered just a bit too.

Read along with @BenSasse:

I typically dont tweet politics here b/c I think we need more celebratory / politics-free zones in life. But am making an exception tonight:

Have been thinking on House Speaker race. Boehner quitting has prompted some remarkably boring/lazy analysis on where we’re at as a nation

New to politics & in deference to tradition I’ve spent first 9mos in Senate keeping head down, interviewing older members/listening/learning

Amazing how much conventional wisdom gets wrong. Throughout our campaign, all we heard from DC press (but not Nebr voters) was The Dynamic:

Media: everything is Tea Party vs Establishment; Leadership vs Outsiders. Voters: Yawn. No; real question is vision–who has it; who doesn’t

Press obsesses over bickering / student council races / who slighted whom. Voters barely care. They care where their country is headed

Media framing of Speaker’s race is reductionistic choice: small-ball Establishment vs wild-eyed Visigoths who want to burn govt to ground

It’s a 24hr newscycle of this junk that never ends. The American people look at DC & think, “We want to fire every single one of you people”

There’s a reason #Congress approval is at 11%, folks

The problem w/ this Dynamic is it misses larger point: It aint A vs B. We need Option C: the Vision thing. The “Go Big or Go Home” thing

Which brings us back to this moment: Founding Fathers put House closest to the people so it would reflect the nation’s (not Beltway’s) will

HouseSpeaker should b Congress’ chief STORYTELLER -cast the big vision of American exceptionalism; remind nation who we are/what we’re about

The next Speaker must be someone who fights FOR people, not merely against bad or inefficient Washington programs

The next Speaker must be a happy warrior. We have to sell a vision and win an argument before squabbling about particular policies

The next Speaker must celebrate earned success & empowering our friends / neighbors to live full lives of opportunity

The next Speaker must cut through the media’s 4th-grade portrayal of Rs vs Ds. The choice here is NOT #GOP numbers vs Dems’ compassion

The next Speaker must go places Republicans don’t usually go. Need more venturing beyond country clubs and chambers of commerce

Expanding the electorate means expanding our horizons. I care far more about struggles of the bottom 30% than the top 1% (& so does the 1%)

Truly American leadership starts with politicians admitting that politics and DC are not the center of national life. A vibrant citizenry is

The Speaker’s job is not only for Republicans, but for the whole House – actually: the whole nation

The Speaker’s chief job is not policy bickering but lifting high / passing on a Constitutional sense of the American idea

Next speaker needs to have the ideas of Jack Kemp, work ethic of Mike Rowe, resolve of Margaret Thatcher, & wit of Larry the Cable Guy

Therefore…I’m endorsing @ArthurBrooks for Speaker of the House.

[Arthur C. Brooks is an American social scientist and musician. He is the president of the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank. Brooks is best known for his work on the junctions between culture, economics, and politics. – Wikipedia]

Just purchased the domain: #Momentum

(Fantasy update): @tonyromo still out with a shoulder injury, however @not_romo is warming up on the sideline. Weird #Cowboys #Saints #SNF

Who’s the best communicator in our movement? He/she might not be in Congress today. So what? Why wld we not pick that person –for “SPEAKER”?

lesson of Trump moment & 3 non-pols getting >50% of #GOP primary is NOT that people are saying:“Give us another politician to rule over us”

I’m not saying @arthurbrooks is definitely the best communicator in America; I’m just saying: If you know of a better one…Tell me. I’ll wait

Tell me who…I’ll wait. …Gotta go put kids to bed for a bit anyway. #thirdquarterjuststarting (was always my #MNF bedtime as a kid)

So, uh, there you go.

I was updated to the Senator’s Twitter journey by 3 different people while he was in the middle of it.

I did NOT see the Arthur Brooks endorsement coming.

FWIW, Jonah Goldberg, also of the American Enterprise Institute, had noted last week that the Speaker does NOT have to be a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, and thus he suggested Newt Gingrich.

So maybe Senator Sasse was inspired by Jonah to make an “out of the box” suggestion.

And he does reference the current King of Tweets, Donald Trump, so possibly that provided some imagination.

Or maybe Drew Brees just riled him up.
We’ll keep you updated…


Trump, Ben and the rest…

The latest polling from Iowa

Donald Trump – 24%
Ben Carson – 19%
Carly Fiorina – 8%
Jeb Bush – 7%
Ted Cruz – 6%
Marco Rubio – 6%
Bobby Jindal – 6%
Mike Huckabee – 5%
Rand Paul – 4%
Chris Christie – 4%
John Kasich – 3%
Rick Santorum – 1%
Lindsey Graham – 1%

So that’s pretty much Trump, Carson and then The Field.
Fiorina is up from low single digits to high single digits.
Marco Rubio is still floating at mid-single digits.
Jeb Bush is continuing his mid-high single digits.

Here’s my question to you, peeps:
Does Trump have a ceiling?

Is he likely to go much higher than, say, 30% in Iowa?
Or anywhere else.
And is that enough to get him there?

Also note that over the weekend, Trump said Carson would have a place in the Trump Administration. Already courting his peeps?

Next debate 3 weeks away…
(And isn’t it sort of nice that people are actually looking forward to watching the debates this time around?)


Too Soon?

The Con Agra situation is harsh and horrible for many, many people in Omaha.
That being said — and I’ve personally been through these situations, so I’m not being flippant — sometimes a little humor helps.

And I saw this one on The Facebook…

Chef Boy

Have a Monday…


  1. Sasse the Fraud says:

    Hmmm, I don’t have a PhD from an Ivy League School but the last time I checked a Senator does not nominate or elect the Speaker of the House. Maybe Ben Sasse can deal with this problem we have in the leadership by getting rid of Mitch McConnell, the one person as a Senator he can make a Motion of No Confidence for. Does Ben have the balls to actually follow through on anything he pontificates on??? Ben will only get so Bold when about a dozen other Senators put their neck on the line and call for McConnell’s head. Then he will read the polls and decide on whether to join the coup. C’Mon Ben MAN UP and call for a change in the Senate Leadership your spineless bloviator!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Too bad Sasse doesn’t answer the people he serves as much as he “tweets.” Took me three times and finally got an answer though not to the questions I asked in regards to the open southern border and ISIS advancement. His head must have been down.

  3. To Sasse the Fraud says:

    You don’t have the intellect to appreciate Ben Sasse’s insights on policy matters. Ben’s mind is always focusing from DC on how to improve the average life of Nebraskans.

  4. Just Wondering says:

    Where is Ben Sasse on being the Obamacare Nemesis? Is there a repeal bill he has drafted? Introduced? Thought about?

  5. NE Voter says:

    That Sasse soliloquey is downright . . . Weird. The guy is always smug and self-absorbed — I wonder if he did those Tweets while gazing at his relection in the mirror blowing kisses to himself. Or combing his golden hair over and over until it was just PERFECT.

    Very revealing and deeply strange.

    The Ego has Landed.

  6. Sparkles says:

    One has to assume Sasse was deep into the punch bowl before taking us for a tour of the fantasy land that is his hippocampus.

    Sasse tweets:
    “There’s a reason #Congress approval is at 11%, folks”

    Yea, Ben.. that reason being; since the GOP took control of Congress we’ve witnessed a sheer clust%&^$ of purely politically motivated depravity.

    We don’t need a grand vision, Ben, we simply need the GOP to DO IT’S F*&^ING JOB!

    And Arthur Brooks? Really?
    French Hornist, novelist, and “happy warrior”, Arthur Brooks?
    In case you were unaware, here’s one of the main tenets of Brooks’ rehashed philosophy of “compassionate conservatism” (cause ya know, it worked sooo good for GW);
    “In my view, it is unacceptable for someone in America’s wealthy society to go without access to basic medical care..”

    How’s that work for ya, Ben?
    Remember, you’re whole pandering platform was based on the what you KNEW was the impossible feat of repealing access to basic medical care.

    And tossing Brooks into the fetid swamp that is the House? Boehner was a ruthless political animal with 30 years of infighting experience. A man with the political savvy to have been part of the collective that sent another masterful political warrior, Newt Gingrich, to an early retirement.
    Someone with Boehner’s skill couldn’t handle the miscreants that have taken the House, and our entire government hostage, but French Hornist, Happy Warrior and political neophyte Arthur Brooks can?!

    Truly amazing.

  7. Ricky says:

    Sasse: Be it resolved that the next Speaker of the House will not oppose everything Mr Obama does just because he is Mr Obama, the first Black President of the USA.
    Sasse: Be it resolved that everybody in America know that I have sweet kids that we home school who hate Obamacare as much as I do.
    Sasse: Be it resolved that no butt kissing Nebraska media, especially Joe Morton, ask me about the “torture memos” I help write while at Justice under W Bush in 2004.
    Sasse: Be it resolved that nobody will out conservative me, and that everybody in America know I am the cutest Obama-hater in Congress.


  8. Rule of thumb says:

    1) If you can’t make your point in two or three tweets, make that point someplace else.
    2) If your Facebook status requires pressing “continue reading”, you’re writing too much for facebook. Make those long, drawn out points someplace else.


  9. Not adding up says:

    “New to politics & in deference to tradition I’ve spent first 9mos in Senate keeping head down, interviewing older members/listening/learning”
    Is this what Sasse promised the voters of Nebraska? That he would go to the Senate and keep his head down? Shocking how different his objectives seem to be since he won compared to being a candidate.

  10. I see that the Osborn/Dinsdale trolls are alive and well says:

    Amazing that the same group of geniuses who said Sasse had no chance right until he won the Primary by THIRTY don’t understand why what Sasse did last night was incredibly valuable and why he’s getting kudos from every part of the political spectrum this AM.

    Free advice: Get over it. You guys lost. (And you look small.)

    Embrace the pain. It’s the only way you’ll ever recover.

  11. Get real, Sparkles. The reason Congress has been unproductive is Harry Reid’s use of the filibuster to shut down the Senate. 6 separate appropriations bills have passed the House only to get stuck in the Senate. Reid is blocking them because even if the Senate passes its own version (as they did with commerce, Justice, etc.), it goes to a conference committee and then the final bill needs only a bare majority on reconciliation. Since Obama isn’t keen on a lot of these bills, he’d be forced to sign or veto them. So Reid won’t let them come to the floor.

  12. To the Ben Apologist at 11:58 am says:

    Where is the Obamacare Nemesis? Where is Ben’s leadership in introducing conservative legislation? name a bill that Sasse has submitted? Besides his soundbites, what has he actually contributed?

  13. Rule of thumb says:

    not that anybody cares… but even though I hate the tactic of tweeting his long, drawn out message, I really liked a couple of Sen. Sasse’s points. Good message, but put it in an Op. Ed next time and then tweet a link.

  14. Sparkles says:

    Arthur C Brooks supports comprehensive immigration, ala Gang of Eight:
    “The solution, then, is not to derail immigration reform or find some other way to slow down Hispanic political participation. The solution is to make a serious, conservative bid to help the poor and vulnerable.”

    Arthur C Brooks would never support defunding the Dept of Education:
    “..put education reform in poor communities front and center. Today, students from low-income families are five times as likely to drop out of school as students from high-income families, according to data from the Department of Education. It is a civil-rights scandal that we effectively accept this opportunity-denying status quo.”

    Arthur C Brooks share a a great number of liberal principles:
    “First, make it clear that the safety net for the indigent and needy is not the source of our fiscal problems. It is the safety net for everyone else—the able-bodied, the middle class, and corporate cronies—that is driving our country to insolvency.”

    Oh really.. “corporate cronies”? Trickle down not trickling?
    What would Jim Vokal do?

  15. Sparkles says:


    Your claim relating to House appropriations bills is so remarkably disingenuous.

    From the July 6, 2015 Washington Post –
    “How Republicans want to defund Obama’s legacy”
    Republicans are planning to use the annual spending bills to challenge some of President Obama’s best-loved policies..
    ..The fiscal 2016 spending bills moving through the House and Senate are filled with attempts to block or defund a slew of Obama administration initiatives..”

    Even Fox ‘news’ called out the GOP’s “gimmick”. A direct quote from Fox ‘News;
    “The emerging budget plan would have delivered an almost $40 billion budget boost to the Pentagon while relying on deep cuts to domestic agency budgets and government safety net programs..”

    This is EXACTLY what I pointed to in the Harvard study last Friday about the modern GOP-
    “They Don’t Give a Damn about Governing”.

  16. TexasAnnie says:

    Well, in his podcast, Jim Vokal said he would gear education to employer needs and give more tax incentives. It would seem rather than ‘trickle-down’ Vokal would prefer a river of corporate largesse flowing from the very people who get no tax relief themselves!

  17. True Conservative Ben Sasse says:

    So what conservative bill has Ben Sasse introduced. Where is his Obamacare repeal bill? The only thing he has done for Nebraska is hand out some Runzas

  18. Hey kids!
    I just recorded an interview with Omaha’s KPTM Fox 42, discussing last night’s Senator Sasse Twitter Storm — and social media in politics, in general.
    Should be on their 9pm news.
    (Unless I get bumped.)
    Take a watch and tell your friends (and enemies)!
    -JK (aka SS)

  19. bynd says:


    It took a lot of fire and destruction to wipe out the plague.

    You’re statement that the GOP only lived to stop Obama, of and by itself is meaningless. It is a lot more complex than that. I might also point out that in the last election, all of this was known yet the Republicans increased their margin in the House and took over the Senate. It was a repudiation of Obama and the Dems that Obama refused to accept. It is indeed now Obama and Reid who have become the obstructionist not caring what Americans want from their elected officials.

    As to minorities, the largest and fastest growing do not include Black Americans. They will essentially remain static until at 2060. Could that be because of the genocidal rate of abortions that the libs are leading them down the primrose path too?

    The others are showing less poverty in their group while the groups grow at 5% to 11% rates. And why are the Hispanics and Asians doing better than the Blacks? It may not matter when the Blacks are wiped out of this country thanks to>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>YOU! Then poor minorities will be less of a problem. Not to mention, bald, old, white men will by then be a minority. Wait until they demand use of the all the special laws to advance minorities.

    Be careful what you ask for.

  20. bynd says:

    You’re even less entertaining here than you were on Watchdog. How long until Street Sweeper bans you from here? After all, you hold him in such disdain.

    Remember, it is the rich republicans that pay your pension. Maybe you should walk the talk and give up your over sized pension.

  21. repentinglawyer says:

    Prof GH, It takes 60 votes to get a bill to the floor of the Senate, as a practical matter. Been that way for a number of years, and both parties use the arrangement. Might be nice to go back to bring in the beds and stay on your , which made a great movie, but it will not happen. Obvious reason Sasse has done nothing about Obama Care, and why he is smart to learn the ropes. Senate may not be as traditional as it once was, but collapse of House traditions not a perfect argument for Senate change. A point implicit in the Senator’s tweet.

  22. Macdaddy says:

    OK. Not bad on the boob tube, Sweeper. You at least made more sense than Sasse and didn’t drop your g’s. Sasse’s tweets were as exciting to read as it was watching Abdullah tonight. In other words, duds all around. What a waste of electricity and time to suggest someone that has less of a chance than I do to be elected Speaker. If he wanted to suggest Kanye, OTOH, then he would have at least been entertaining while he wasted our time.

  23. TexasAnnie says:

    So what did you say, Street Sweeper? We don’t get KPTM in central Texas and out internet service doesn’t import programs well.

  24. TexasAnnie says:

    In other news (Martha Stoddard): The founding director of the Buffett Early Childhood Institute says Nebraska faces a serious shortage of qualified people to care for young children, and that solving this challenge will require boosting salaries and benefits.

    It doesn’t surprise me that the Buffett director pleads for more public funding. Providing a livable wage to caregivers of the DD population has always been a barrier to quality care at BSDC and group homes across the state. (And the respective governors and legislators have always realized this barrier!) So now that the Buffett expert has identified the same problem, but for a different population, will the governor and unicam respond? Does the Buffett Institute have enough clout to bring pay parity for the DD population along with the new wages being hoped for in educating the very young? Or will the Buffett Institute usurp any sparse funding available for the public care of ‘other people’s kids?’ After all, what the Buffett Institute is suggesting IS new government programming. And it’s not the kind that Jim Vokal has in mind: It Won’t Involve Job Training!

  25. Key 'n Trumpets says:

    Sasse’s iconoclastic tweet suggests he is running for a cabinet position. He isn’t jumping aboard the Trump train yet but he is dressing up in the right clothes for the trip.

    As for Sweeper’s question, “Does Trump have a ceiling? The answer is “yes” only if you believe Trump’s rude cab driver act is real. And that requires you view the Wharton grad who turned millions into billions and reset GOP campaign issues to his liking, and has survived one seeming political suicide after another, doing all that by magic. — We are pundits, folks. We know that elegant effective strategy works whether we see it coming or not, and whether we like it or not. We know truth hurts because only truth can make a dent. Whatever is going on here, it is based in something solid.

    Socratic Irony is a feigned fawning to relax your opponent to make a faux pas. Trump’s twist on this is to feign rudeness (rudeness always wrapped around unassailable truth) to powerfully spur the PC that infects his opponents, and often within their most comfortable areas of expertise. That chivvies them into indignantly demanding an apology, with them fully confident that we voters will agree that Trump must apologize for being rude. And we all do exactly that. We all kneejerk believe that Trump must apologize because all of us are infected and blinded by PC too. Even Trump’s supporters “wish he hadn’t been so rude”. We all are 100% sure that candidates commit suicide by rudeness.

    But then Trump triggers the second half of his twist on Socratic Irony: He refuses to apologize for “telling the truth”. And that falls on voters like a ton of bricks. It forces a mind-shift, for some an epiphany.

    The climax of each of these riveting mini-dramas is that at one moment we are spectators observing Trump committing suicide and the next moment he slam-challenges us to justify us for us too putting politeness above truth. And we cannot justify that. Each of us is forced by Trump to re-examine his exact words and presto! Rosy O’Donnell really is disgusting. And Jeb Bush really does care about Mexico because his in-laws are Mexicans living in Mexico. Trump’s unassailable truth is unassailable. Ouch. That means we are kneejerk PC infected too.

    Once we see ourselves as having irrationally condemned Trump for telling the truth, normal human projection causes us to shift our own guilt onto the bait-takers. We see Fiorina put feminism above policy differences. We see Bush foolishly deny he cares for where his own wife’s family lives. And we see Trump having caused these and other similar revelations. With that comes not enjoyment but our respect. — None of this is magic. Trump is playing this chess game several moves ahead of the rest of them. At least, it certainly appears that way.

    The elegance of this strategy is profound. Trump has openly spoken about the cancerous nature of political correctness. He has said he cannot stay ahead the entire time. But his strategy never stops working.

    As Sasse points out, GOP regular candidates cannot become un-regulars. So too, Fiorina cannot become un-fired by HP. And if Carson can develop a non-sedative personality, he is smarter than Trump. But is any of that likely? Is it likely that Trump is just dumb and lucky? People are coming to Trump for the cure. If his tax plan is any measure of what he can whip up in a month, no problem there.

    The ceiling for Trump is the limit of Political Correctness in Americans. Run out of that and he’s toast.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Right. A U.S. Senator that tweets like an hormonely charged teenager during a Cowboys/Saints game and it’s the person he serves that is a “loon.”

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