Stranded? Don’t expect lifeline from major GOP candidates

This little misadventure got me thinking about whom among the GOP presidential candidates I would call as a “lifeline” if I needed their help in a similar situation.

By Chris Ingram

The Tampa Tribune

Published October 27, 2011

Last weekend I took my family out in the boat for a sunset cruise. On our return, my spotlight went out, and we got off course heading into the channel as I slightly misread the compass bearing. It was dark, the tide was low, and we were hitting bottom. So I called my friends Tommy and Ronnie, who are avid boaters and retired firefighters and live in the same neighborhood as I do. I asked for some points of reference — however limited at night — which they provided.

A few minutes later we were still off course and in shallow water when Tommy called to check on us. I told him we were still under way, looking for channel markers, though still in very shallow water. He offered to come to our aid, which I declined, telling him I’d call him back in a half hour if we needed help.

When I called Tommy back, he was already in his boat, and Ronnie was with him. An hour later we were all back home safe and sound, thanks to their help.

My selfless friends showed me and the girls in my life what being neighborly is all about.

This little misadventure got me thinking about whom among the GOP presidential candidates I would call as a “lifeline” if I needed their help in a similar situation. Continue reading “Stranded? Don’t expect lifeline from major GOP candidates”

Republican Party Kool-Aid? No thanks

The fact is I don’t hate the Republican Party. But I don’t love it either. For me, the party is merely the means to an end. When the party or its candidates don’t support the end, they don’t get my support.

By Chris Ingram

Special Correspondent, Tampa Tribune

Last week Hillsborough GOP Chairwoman Deborah Cox-Roush asked me, “Why do you hate the Republican Party?” I wasn’t the slightest bit surprised or offended by the question as I’ve been asked this before.

The fact is I don’t hate the Republican Party. But I don’t love it either. For me, the party is merely the means to an end. When the party or its candidates don’t support the end, they don’t get my support.

As far as my Republican bona-fides go, I’ve been bleeding Republican red since I was a kid. At 10 years old, I made a hand-made sign boasting “Reagan for President” that I tacked to my bedroom door.

As an adult I’ve worked for the election of scores of Republican candidates. I’ve stuffed envelopes, walked neighborhoods, managed campaigns, attended conventions, and contributed money. I’ve been a registered Republican my whole life.

But I quit drinking the GOP’s Kool-Aid years ago.

I refuse to support Republican candidates when Continue reading “Republican Party Kool-Aid? No thanks”

Squirrel Poop’s “Alliance” bar tab

As treasurer of the Alliance for Florida, a registered committee of continuous existence (CCE) with the state of Florida, Michael Ciftci (aka: Shifty & Squirrel Poop) managed the finances of the organization.

A flawed candidate no doubt, but he’s got good taste in the ladies and Tampa’s eating and drinking establishments

By Chris Ingram

As treasurer of the Alliance for Florida, a registered committee of continuous existence (CCE) with the state of Florida, Michael Ciftci (aka: Shifty & Squirrel Poop) managed the finances of the organization. The Alliance’s donors are primarily made up of Tampa Bay area developers. The Alliance and its members say they are about good government and getting good people elected to public office – certainly a noble cause.

While the Alliance for Florida has done a nice job talking about supporting candidates, its actual financial support of candidates under Squirrel Poop’s leadership is meager at best.

From January of 2009 until August of 2010 (the date the most recent report is available), the Alliance for Florida had $60,525.99 in expenditures. In theory, these monies were for the Alliance’s stated purpose. In reality,

Continue reading “Squirrel Poop’s “Alliance” bar tab”

Hillsborough candidate and referenda recommendations

The options for voters in Hillsborough County for the General Election are weak to say the least. In an age when voters nationwide have tended to reject incumbent officeholders and career politicians, Hillsborough voters tended to embrace them – at least in the Primary Elections, the result of which gives us our General Election candidates.

Irreverent View dissects the races and makes recommendations in most all of Hillsborough County’s competitive races (and a few that aren’t competitive)

By Chris Ingram

With absentee ballots already in the mail, it’s time for a quick assessment of local candidates. You can review our state, congressional, and ballot initiative recommendations by clicking here.

The options for voters in Hillsborough County for the General Election are weak to say the least. In a year when voters nationwide have rejected incumbent officeholders and career politicians, Hillsborough voters tended to Continue reading “Hillsborough candidate and referenda recommendations”

Waiting for a Good Idea to Emerge

The nation needs inspiration to solve its biggest problems, but the presidential candidates haven’t offered much so far

By Elan Barnehama

The primaries continue to drag on and the election is not for another half a year, but I’m ready to call the race. Without any results having been reported, I can say with complete confidence that we the people have lost. Again.

After all the debates and with what started out as dozens of candidates drawn from our best and brightest political minds, not a single great idea – or even a very good idea – has emerged. I’m still waiting to hear something bold wrapped Continue reading “Waiting for a Good Idea to Emerge”