Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Kudlow: retiring Sen. Schumer would be a noble cause

Early last year, rumors began to circulate that CNBC commentator and former Reagan advisor Lawrence Kudlow might challenge Connecticut Senator Christopher Dodd in 2010.  Now that Dodd has announced his retirement, a movement is afoot to draft Kudlow to run against Charles Schumer in New YorkMichael Caputo at Big Government made these observations last week:
Until Scott Brown was elected to the Senate in loopy liberal Massachusetts, nobody thought it ever possible to rid New York of the self-serving, mean-spirited, virulently partisan liberal. Now the game has changed. Enter Larry Kudlow.

A graduate of the University of Rochester, Kudlow also worked for New York’s legendary Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan. A chief architect of the Reagan era tax-cuts that sparked one of the greatest economic booms in modern times, Kudlow is recognized as a leading anti-tax supply side economist. He holds Jack Kemp out as his mentor and is one of the few people in politics today determined to carry the Buffalo Congressman’s legacy forward.

Kudlow has run a business, met a payroll and toiled for decades in the corporate, policy and media arenas. He’s also endured the alembic of personal crisis and come out tempered with character and humility. In contrast, Schumer has been in politics all his adult life and, after countless mean-spirited public episodes, his character is in question.

Kudlow is also a thoughtful, well-spoken and original analyst and one of the most effective debaters on the Right. This capacity is vital against Schumer, who is vicious and smart on the stump.

Importantly, Kudlow may raise just as much money from his stellar contacts as Schumer does from his own. Insiders say he may even beat the longtime legislator among Wall Street donors, who are quietly but completely tired of Schumer’s shakedowns.
Kudlow has been mostly silent on the speculation, although he did remark to the Washington Times:
"I'm very honored to be considered, and I'm going to give all this careful attention," he said late last month in a radio interview. "I do believe that retiring Sen. Schumer would be a noble cause."
His opinion piece in the Washington Examiner Monday suggests to me that he might be leaning toward a run:
Washington's disconnect from the rest of the country has never been greater. Why can't the political class in the District of Columbia produce a fiscal product that voters, taxpayers and investors are willing to consume?

According to The Washington Post, voters want smaller government and fewer government services by a large 58 percent to 38 percent margin. Pollster Scott Rasmussen reveals that 61 percent of voters believe tax cuts help the economy, that 59 percent think tax cuts are a better job-creation tool than increased government spending and that another 59 percent believe higher deficits hurt the economy.

Rasmussen also reports that a full 83 percent of Americans blame the deficit on the unwillingness of politicians to cut government spending. And get this: In a whopper of a poll result, The New York Times reports that 75 percent of Americans dislike Congress.

This is why there's a political revolt out there. Washington just doesn't get it.

Inside the Beltway, Democrats are sending a profoundly pessimistic message that only government knows best. But out there in the heartland there is an optimistic message that We the People know best. And that heartland optimism will not be stopped.

The future of the U.S. economy — including jobs, growth and the stock market — hangs in the balance. Government-controlled health care, with Senate vote-purchasing and union special-interest loopholes, is not the answer. Nor is a $2 trillion tax hike on banks, multinational corporations, capital gains, inheritance and successful upper-income earners. Nor is a doubling of the publicly held federal debt to $19 trillion, or nearly 80 percent of gross domestic product. Nor is a federal spending ratio of 25 percent of the economy. Nor is a budget deficit at a 10 percent share of GDP for as far as the eye can see.

Again, Washington doesn't get it. Politicians are delivering a fiscal product that no one in America wants. It's no wonder small businesses aren't hiring. Yes, there is a cyclical recovery going on, but it is incomplete without the jobs.
I say, "Run, Larry, run!"

New Yorkers can sign the Draft Larry Kudlow petition and contribute here.

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