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Wednesday, November 28, 2007
posted by Jeff Fuller | 12:31 AM | permalink
As an update to my "A vote for Huckabee is a vote for Rudy" post.

The New York Sun has a piece called "Giuliani, Huckabee Emerge as Strange Bedfellows"

Time's take is noted in the article "Giuliani's Huckabee Strategy"

Rich Lowry of the National Review sees this trend in his "The Corner" post "Rudy and Huck sittin in a Tree . . . " (Is that making it to "second base" . . . I always forget that grading system of a physical relationship):

These pieces in Time and the New York Sun point out something that's been increasingly evident over the last few days: how nicely Rudy and Huck's strategies mesh. They both are attacking Romney for a lack of authenticity, with Huck blasting the former Massachusetts governor on social issues and Rudy blasting him on everything else. Together, they've got all the ground covered. The division of labor works geographically as well — Huck is threatening Romney in Iowa, which could weaken Romney in New Hampshire, where Rudy is increasingly vested in a strong finish (so much for the old Florida and Feb. 5 strategy). At the end of the day, I'm sure that the Rudy folks would like nothing more than for Huck to win the "conservative primary" within the Republican primary and emerge as the alternative to Rudy. Huck would be the weakest anti-Rudy contender. This seems so obvious that if I were a calculating Rudy donor who had already maxed out for my guy, I'd be tempted to send some money Huck's way.

These kind of transparently calculating alliances tend to backfire. Evangelical Christians don't want to be used as a tool to elect a pro-choice nominee and then have to vote 3rd party to protect the pro-life cause. Talk about a "Lose-Lose" situation.

Jeff Fuller
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I've never posted an entire news article word-for-word anywhere. But I believe this might be one of those important exceptions. This article by Michael Levenson of the Boston Globe sheds a ton of light on the situation that led to tragic murders of a young couple in Washington State. The entire article gives essential context to what occurred, and I feel that the Globe article is a MUST-READ for two important reasons: (1) It once again shows that Mitt Romney bares no responsibility for the deaths of this poor couple and that Mitt Romney showed no poor judgment whatsoever in appointing this judge to the court & (2) The judge may not have made any mistake at all in releasing this monster into the general public except for by only doing her job, she tragically put into motion events that led to two unnecessary deaths. From the Boston Globe:


Lawyers cite state in killer's release

Say correction agency was slow with assault case

By Michael Levenson
Globe Staff / November 27, 2007

The state Department of Correction made errors that contributed to a judge's release of Daniel T. Tavares Jr. without bail, setting in motion events that ended with Tavares' alleged murder of a Washington state couple last week, according to his former lawyer.

The department took nearly 18 months to file charges of assaulting prison guards against Tavares Jr., waiting until a week before he was to complete a 16-year sentence for stabbing his mother to death. That delay allowed the defense lawyer to argue that the charges had little merit and were simply a last-minute maneuver to hold Tavares.

The department also never told prosecutors about evidence, such as a letter in which Tavares threatened to kill then-Governor Mitt Romney, that could have been used to keep Tavares behind bars, according to the lawyer.

Convinced Tavares was not a risk to flee, Superior Court Judge Kathe M. Tuttman released him without bail, and he soon fled to Washington, where last week he was charged with shooting his neighbors, a newlywed couple.

Tuttman has become a lightning rod for criticism and a figure in the Republican presidential race, with Rudy Giuliani using her as a springboard to criticize Romney's record on crime. Romney, who appointed Tuttman, called for her resignation, saying she showed an inexcusable lack of judgment.

But several lawyers, including one involved in the case, said yesterday if there is any blame, it belongs with the Correction Department, not Tuttman.

"She followed the letter of the law and did what she was sworn to do," said Barry P. Dynice, a Leominster lawyer who represented Tavares before Tuttman. "If you're going to hold anybody responsible for this guy, you hold DOC. He was living with them for 16 years. Who would know more about Mr. Tavares than his jailers for the last 16 years?"

Tuttman's boss, Chief Justice Barbara J. Rouse, also broke her silence yesterday, saying Tuttman "is living every judge's nightmare: that a principled decision based on the law and the information provided to her was followed by tragic events over which she had no control."

Yesterday, Governor Deval Patrick asked Public Safety Secretary Kevin M. Burke to review the case to determine whether it exposed gaps in the correction system.

In an escalating war of words over the last three days while campaigning in New Hampshire, Giuliani has questioned Romney's judgment in appointing Tuttman, a career prosecutor, to the bench last year. In response, Romney has pointed to Giuliani's close ties to Bernard Kerik, the former New York police commissioner who was indicted this month on corruption charges, accusing the former New York mayor on CNN yesterday of "throwing stones from glass houses."

Romney has also disputed Giuliani's criticism of his anticrime record. The murder rate in Massachusetts rose from 2.7 per 100,000 people in 2002, the year before Romney took office, to 2.9 in 2006, his last year in office, according to the FBI. The state's overall violent crime rate, however, declined during his administration.

Tavares was in prison for his 1991 manslaughter conviction in his mother's death when he allegedly assaulted guards in December 2005 and February 2006. But the Department of Correction did not ask prosecutors to file charges until June, said Tim Connolly, a spokesman for the Worcester district attorney's office.

Diane Wiffin, a Correction Department spokeswoman, said yesterday the charges were "brought in a timely fashion," noting Tavares was still behind bars. She also said the department gave prosecutors "all the information related" to the case.

In June, a District Court judge held Tavares on $50,000 bail for each of the two assault counts, which kept him behind bars after his scheduled release on June 14. On July 16, Tavares asked Tuttman to review his bail.

According to a transcript of the hearing, Dynice asked for no bail, arguing that Tavares would not flee because he planned to live with his sister in Dighton and had a job lined up as a welder.

Prosecutors sought to keep the bail in place, pointing out that Tavares had a history of violence.

Tuttman released Tavares on personal recognizance and ordered probation officials to check on him by phone every three days.

Probation officials said Tavares, 41, was freed on July 16, reported to them on July 18, but then failed to show up for his next hearing July 23, when a warrant was issued for his arrest. Last week, Tavares was arrested in the slayings of Brian and Beverly Mauck in a rural area south of Tacoma, where he had been living with a woman he met online while in prison.

Edward P. Ryan Jr., a former president of the Massachusetts Bar Association, said Tuttman did nothing wrong because, under state law, bail hearings are intended only to weigh defendants' risk of fleeing, not the likelihood that they will commit another crime.

"For the governor to back away from this judge is nothing more than political expediency and cowardice in the face of fire," Ryan said yesterday.

After appointing a commission in 2003 to revamp the prison system, Romney left several key recommendations on the shelf. One would have beefed up programs for inmates and required closer monitoring after their release.


I cannot fault Mitt Romney for appointing this judge. Judge Tuttman had been a longtime prosecutor as Romney and the media have pointed out. But did she do anything wrong in releasing a person who had served his time in jail, who shortly before he was to be let go from jail suddenly gets accused of an 18 month-old crime unrelated to the crime that put him behind bars?

Either the prosecutor's office or the Department of Corrections messed up BIG, BIG, BIG TIME here. But it does not appear that Judge Tuttman did anything wrong. If prosecutors knew of letters threatening Governor Romney's life written by Mr. Tavares and prosecutors did not share those letters with the judge, those prosecutors should be fired. If these letters never got to prosecutors and stayed with the Department of Corrections, then whoever did not pass these threatening letters onto prosecutors to present to Judge Tuttman should be fired! I like Mitt Romney, but I agree with Edward Ryan from the article. Romney needs to show some backbone, apologize for a politically expedient, knee-jerk reaction (I wouldn’t expect him to put it that way exactly) in asking that Judge Tuttman step down, and Romney should say that he wants a full investigation before heads fly! After a full investigation, if it is found that Judge Tuttman was negligent, then she should resign. But if she wasn't negligent and the deaths of this poor Washington couple could have been avoided if only DOC or prosecutors had done their jobs, then whoever made these grievous errors must be fired. There is no reason to tarnish her long career and throw her under the bus for political gain if Judge Tuttman just did her job here. In the end, I still think that the surviving families of the Washington couple may have two extremely strong wrongful death cases against the State of Massachusetts for judicial malpractice that led to these unnecessary murders.

Off topic but important: GMR is running a great fundraising item right now called "The UltiMITT Holiday"--for $250 you get all sorts of cool mitt stuff like fleece blanket, mugs, Ann's holiday recipes, etc. You should add the link to your site and add to the gov's coffers!

I'm glad that Mike Up-Chuck-abee appears to be pushing for and is accepting anti-Mormon bigotry either openly or by not having the guts to stand up against it. Up-Chuck-abee is a slimy & disgusting coward. But even worse than that, I wouldn't doubt that Up-Chuck-abee himself holds these same negative feelings and resentments about Mormons that many of his bigoted supports appear to have. What did Up-Chuck-abee himself say when the Southern Baptist Convention named Mormonism as a “religious cult” recently? And as head of the Arkansas Baptist Convention, did he support the classification or object? Although, I can’t stand Jimmy Carter’s politics, I do have to give him props for openly abandoning the SBC for this and other reasons. At this point, I'd like to remind everybody that there was also one point where Rudy Giuliani came out swinging in defense of Mormons when confronted with questions about possible anti-Mormon rebel-rousing by his campaign. For his defense of Mormons, Giuliani deserves his props. But I guarantee that if Up-Chuck-abee doesn't step up and start defending Mormons specifically and talking about how he would not tolerate bigotry from his supporters and covert bigotry in his own TV advertisements, Mr Up-Chuck-abee is going to have to write off winning the entire western United States if he somehow becomes the Republican nominee. As his ad more than subtly tries to remind voters, don’t forget that Up-Chuck-abee is the “CHRISTIAN LEADER”, and Mitt Romney is the evil Mormon!

Early in the election process, some in the liberal media tried to ask the question of what Mormon voters would do if they felt that Romney lost the nomination solely due to his Mormon faith. Would the vast number of Mormons who vote Republican stick with a "Conservative" party that appeared to have strong religious leanings against Mormons in particular? And an even greater question, what if the eventual nominee either allowed or himself fostered such religious bigotry? Would Mormons, the most reliable base in the Republican Party, just accept it and vote Republican anyway, sit on their hands instead and not vote at all, or “gasp” start voting against everything that is good in the world and vote Democrat just to spite Up-Chuck-abee and his religious bigot supporters?

Well, I can't speak for an entire religion, but I am one Mormon, who would not currently vote for Up-Chuck-abee under any circumstances because of his apparent anti-Mormon hostilities or at least acceptance of those feelings within his campaign and supporters, and I would even go as far as voting for Hillary to ensure that someone who was openly hostile to my faith did not get into the White House or even become Vice-President. Up-Chuck-abee had better step up is all that I'm saying or he can kiss the Republican bases in Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Nevada, Arizona, and much of the Western US goodbye.

When Barry Goldwater decided that he believed in supporting "States' Rights" over protecting the civil rights of African-Americans, blacks moved en masse from supporting the Republican Party to the Democratic Party, whos leadership, in their minds at least, didn't want to leave them for dead. Could Up-Chuck-abee be the Republican who forces Mormons out of Reagan's big tent?

New Rasmussen poll out today shows Huck leading Mitt.

That is the greatest headline.

Anon 3:12,

Thanks for the props. I was pretty proud of that headline too.

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