The members of the Harvard Republican Town Committee consist of enrolled members of the Republican Party who reside in the Town of Harvard. We are a voice for common sense in our community.

We are dedicated to gathering individuals together for the purpose of advancing a conservative agenda of small government, limited taxation, individual liberty and individual responsibility while protecting fundamental basics such as public safety and public education. We champion job creation, entrepreneurship, and small businesses.

We also will support candidates for town, state, and federal elections who share the ideals that government should limit its role to its constitutional responsibilities and promote individual rights as our founding fathers intended.

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OPINION EDITORIAL by CHARLIE BAKER

Hi Folks,
I wanted to send along the text of this op-ed I wrote that ran in the Herald yesterday in case you did not get a chance to see it. I hope you find it interesting.
Thanks,
Charlie

The Boston Herald  
Monday, January 28, 2013

Mass. pays economic price for its high rates


Two weeks ago, Gov. Deval Patrick proposed to raise over $2.5 billion in new taxes, including a 20 percent jump in the income tax - the largest in state history. Since then, most of the discussion has focused on the politics of such massive tax increases, and not on the economic implications of such a significant hike in the cost of government. The over-arching message seems to be that tax rates don't matter, the size of government doesn't matter, and the machine that is state government is already doing a perfectly fine job of maximizing the use of state tax dollars. All it needs to ramp up its performance - and the commonwealth's along with it - is a lot more money.

In short, the debate has already presumed that there is no economic development price - no "growth" price, to use the governor's words - to be paid for such a huge increase in taxes - just a political one. Recent history would suggest otherwise.

Over the course of the past decade, the nine states with no personal income tax benefited from population growth, Gross State Product growth, job growth, and tax revenue growth that far exceeded the national average. The nine states with the highest personal income tax rates lagged the national average in all three categories, and it wasn't close.

Some might respond to this  by saying that lower-cost states benefit from being, well, lower cost, and it's important to adjust these numbers for personal income. OK. If one does the same analysis on the  same criteria, and divides the country up by state and local tax burden as a percent of personal income, what happens? The nine states with the lowest state and local tax burden as a percent of personal income out-perform the national average, and also out-perform the states with the highest state and local tax burden, as a percent of personal income.

Are these the only factors that matter in assessing and measuring economic performance? No - but it should give policy makers and others pause. The notion that Massachusetts operates in a vacuum - and that its competitive position relative to other states has nothing to do with its tax, fiscal and regulatory policies is short-sighted.

And economically, we're not exactly breaking records on any of these measures, either. We have underperformed the national average across all of these benchmarks for the past decade as well. Our jobs market has been flat for over 10 years - we had more jobs here in 2000 than we have today - and we have had virtually no population growth for a decade, finishing at or near the bottom of every study of net migration in and out of the 50 states for the past 10 years.

Moreover, as the researchers at MassInc pointed out in their study of the Massachusetts economy from 2000 through 2010, job stagnation has done tremendous damage to working people. We used to be one of the most "equal" states in the nation, in terms of the spread between our top wage earners and our low wage earners. Today, after years of mediocre job, economic and population growth, we are second only to New York - another no growth, high-cost state - in terms of our inequality. Put another way, every state in the nation, except New York, has a smaller spread between its top wage earners and its low wage earners than Massachusetts.

Six years ago, CNBC - the preferred business climate poll of the folks on Beacon Hill, because it gives heavy weight to educational achievement - ranked Massachusetts No. 12 overall - high cost, but smart, to put it simply. Last year, we ranked 28th - which came as a shock to policy makers on Beacon Hill. One summed it up perfectly by saying something like, "I don't understand it - we're not doing anything now that's any different than what we've been doing." Exactly right. We haven't been making our state more affordable, other states have been doing so, and working people in Massachusetts have been paying the price.

As the debate on the governor's proposals moves forward, I would hope to see a little less focus on the politics of voting for big tax increases and a little more focus on whether or not the governor's tax proposals will make it easier or harder to find work in Massachusetts, and grow our economy. It's pretty easy to talk about all the stuff public officials want to do with other people's money, and the gamesmanship associated with taking it from them, but this debate is about much more than that.

This discussion, to paraphrase the governor, is really about what kind of state we want to be. We can follow his lead and double down on our current status as a high-cost, no-growth state - and hope, somehow, to defy recent history - or we can find ways to get the job done that aren't built on the faulty proposition that there's no price to be paid for making this very fine place even less economically competitive than it is today.

Charlie Baker was secretary of Administration and Finance in the Weld administration and the Republican candidate for governor in 2010.

 
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Sen. Thune Gives Weekly GOP Address On Washington's Spending Addiction


January 26, 2013

“Hi, I’m Senator John Thune from the great state of South Dakota.

“With the recently passed fiscal cliff legislation, Congress enacted tax relief for 99 percent of Americans.

“Now that the tax part of the fiscal cliff issue has been dealt with, it’s time to address the real cause of Washington’s fiscal mess—out-of-control spending.

“Washington is addicted to spending your money.

“Over the past four years, our country has added nearly $6 trillion to the national debt. At $16.4 trillion, our nation’s total debt is now larger than our entire economy.

“This means that every man, woman, and child owes a $53,000 share of this debt. That level of spending is unsustainable. We cannot afford to keep adding over a trillion dollars to the debt every year, as we have for the past four years.

“A major credit rating agency has already downgraded our nation’s credit once, and, if we don’t start making some real progress on spending reforms, more downgrades are likely in the near future.

“What does that mean, practically speaking?

“Well if you or I as citizens had a bad credit rating, banks would charge a higher interest rate when we approached them to borrow money.

“It works the same way with nations. If the United States’ credit rating is further downgraded, our country will pay higher interest rates. This will mean trillions of borrowing in order for America to pay its bills.

“Needless to say, we can’t go on like this forever. Eventually, we are simply going to run out of money. And no tax increase, no matter how high, will be enough to save us.

“The only way—the only way—to dig ourselves out of this hole and put our country on a sound financial footing is to get spending under control.

“Reducing our spending and debt will jump-start our economy and create jobs and opportunities for American families and workers.

“And the way to start is by passing a budget.

“I think most American families would agree that having a budget is essential to keeping their spending under control.

“And if a budget is essential when you’re running a family, it’s even more essential when you’re running an entity the size of the federal government.

“Congress’ first priority every year should be coming up with a spending plan. In fact, the law requires Congress to do just that.

“Yet, it’s been almost four years since the Democrat-led Senate passed a formal budget.

“The last time Senate Democrats passed a budget, the iPad didn’t even exist!

“The lack of a clear spending blueprint has enabled billions of dollars in wasteful spending and massive growth in the size of government.

“Rather than continue spending hard-earned taxpayer dollars on government projects, Washington should approve private-sector economic projects like the Keystone XL pipeline—which the President is blocking. This project alone would create 20,000 jobs and strengthen America’s energy independence.

“As every family knows, budgeting is about priorities, and it can require tough decisions. There’s rarely enough money to pay for everything, so you have to decide where your priorities lie, and allocate money accordingly.

“Congress should be no different.

“One thing that must be part of the budget debate this year is a plan to reform our entitlement programs to save and protect Social Security and Medicare for current retirees, as well as for future generations of Americans.

“These programs are in trouble, and they’re on an unsustainable path.

“Social Security began running a deficit in 2010, and without meaningful reform, Medicare will be bankrupt by 2024.

“Despite this dire situation, Democrats have resisted any discussion of reform.

“But the only way to save our entitlement programs is to reform them. It’s as simple as that.

“The good news is that it’s not too late. If we act now, we can put our nation back on a sound financial footing and preserve the promise of economic prosperity for future generations.

“If instead we choose to wait, if instead we choose to put off these tough decisions for another day, then we choose to leave the next generation with a far worse economy than we received from our parents and grandparents. We cannot let that happen.

“We can fix this problem. And I believe that if we work together, we will fix it. I hope Democrats will join us in passing a budget and putting our nation back on the path to prosperity.

“Thank you for listening. May God bless you, and may God bless the United States of America.”

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2013/01/26/sen_thune_gives_weekly_gop_address_on_washingtons_spending_addiction.html

 
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1/18/13 Action Alert Sent to GOAL Members


Attention GOAL Members,

Our Second Amendment Right to Keep and Bear Arms is under attack on many fronts.
Governor Deval Patrick, Representative David Linsky (D) Natick, and many others are in the process of, or already have filed new legislation which will severely restrict our second amendment rights while doing NOTHING to solve any real issues.

Once again our state legislators are committing "Blame and Punishment" of Massachusetts gun owners.
Among the many things our legislators are proposing:

•    10 round magazines loaded with more than 7 rounds, punishable by more than two years in jail.
•    Magazines containing more than 10 rounds, punishable by up to 10 years in jail.
•    Potential confiscation of lawfully purchased long guns and high capacity magazines (greater than 10 round capacity).
•    A complete ban on semi-automatic rifles with certain cosmetic features. (AR type rifles)
•    Up to 2 ½ years in jail for receiving more than 1 gun or magazine in a 30-day period.
•    Mandatory large capacity guns storage at gun clubs instead of in home.
•    Lawful private sales recorded on FA-10 forms will no longer be allowed.
•    Ban "high power" ammunition. (there's been no definition provided as to what that is)
•    Expanding local licensing authorities discretion to deny or restrict licenses to all guns including FID cards.
•    Mandatory insurance for all firearms owners. (see link for more info)
•    New proposed sales tax aimed at firearms/ammo purchase. (this has not been clarified)
•    Mental and physical health waivers to be signed upon applying for a gun license
•    Creating new crimes of assault with a firearm that requires no physical action by the lawful possessor

How to take action - what to do:

Today! Tomorrow! Every Day! Call - email - write:
Governor Deval Patrick: Phone: (617) 725-4005 or (888) 870-7770 (in state) Fax: (617) 727-9725.

Every person that reads this should phone/fax him daily! You can also e-mail him by using the form on this page.

Your state rep and state senator's office: http://www.malegislature.gov/People/FindMyLegislator
Tell them the Governor's bill and Rep. Linsky's new control legislation will do nothing to stop crime, or lower crime statistics, it will only continue to heap punishment on law abiding gun owners by further restricting and controlling what we can lawfully purchase, possess and do.

Urge them to stop the punishment of law abiding gun owners of Massachusetts.

When writing: Be brief, polite, and to the point. Use your own words - form letters etc.. don't get nearly the attention that a personalized short note gets!

 
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The Takers are Storming the Gates!

Excerpts:

“The subject of tax is always a sensitive one. I think it’s important to point out that An Act to Invest doubles the personal exemption so it reduces the burden on middle-income families. I think that’s an important part of this proposal,” Sen. Jamie Eldridge (D-Acton) told the News Service. “I would just say as far as the people’s reaction, I just finished up town hall meetings throughout my district, and the priorities were investing in local aid, transportation, health care and the environment.”

Eldridge said that because House Speaker Robert DeLeo and Senate President Therese Murray have said they are “open” to new revenue proposals, “I think this is the session to consider that.”

“We’re open to other proposals,” said campaign co-chairwoman Rebekah Gewirtz who is a lobbyist for the Massachusetts chapter of the National Association of Social Workers and an alderwoman in Somerville. She said that as long as another proposal met the twin aims of “fairness and substantial new revenue,” the group would consider it.

Read the entire article at http://www.cltg.org/

 
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Obama's Executive Actions on 'Gun Violence Reduction'

Wednesday, 16 Jan 2013 11:05 AM

President Barack Obama said Wednesday he will take these actions by Executive Order:

1. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal agencies to make relevant data available to the federal background-check system.

2. Address unnecessary legal barriers, particularly relating to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, that may prevent states from making information available to the background-check system.

3. Improve incentives for states to share information with the background- check system.

4. Direct the attorney general to review categories of individuals prohibited from having a gun to make sure dangerous people are not slipping through the cracks.

5. Propose rulemaking to give law enforcement the ability to run a full background check on an individual before returning a seized gun.

6. Publish a letter from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to federally licensed gun dealers providing guidance on how to run background checks for private sellers.

7. Launch a national safe and responsible gun ownership campaign.

8. Review safety standards for gun locks and gun safes (Consumer Product Safety Commission).

9. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal law enforcement to trace guns recovered in criminal investigations.

10. Release a Department of Justice report analyzing information on lost and stolen guns and make it widely available to law enforcement.

11. Nominate an ATF director.

12. Provide law enforcement, first responders, and school officials with proper training for active shooter situations.

13. Maximize enforcement efforts to prevent gun violence and prosecute gun crime.

14. Issue a Presidential Memorandum directing the Centers for Disease Control to research the causes and prevention of gun violence.

15. Direct the attorney general to issue a report on the availability and most effective use of new gun-safety technologies and challenge the private sector to develop innovative technologies.

16. Clarify that the Affordable Care Act does not prohibit doctors asking their patients about guns in their homes.

17. Release a letter to healthcare providers clarifying that no federal law prohibits them from reporting threats of violence to law enforcement authorities.

18. Provide incentives for schools to hire school resource officers.

19. Develop model emergency-response plans for schools, houses of worship and institutions of higher education.

20. Release a letter to state health officials clarifying the scope of mental health services that Medicaid plans must cover.

21. Finalize regulations clarifying essential health benefits and parity requirements within Affordable Care Act exchanges.

22. Commit to finalizing mental-health parity regulations.

23. Launch a national dialogue led by Secretaries Sebelius and Duncan on mental health.

http://www.newsmax.com/Headline/Obama-guns-executive-orders/2013/01/16/id/471689

 
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Newspaper Publishes Gun Owners’ Names and Addresses

Dec 24, 2012 4:51pm
By Colleen Curry

A newspaper in New York has received a wave of criticism from its readers after publishing the names and addresses of all of the individuals with handgun or pistol permits in its coverage area.

Hundreds of residents in New York’s Westchester and Rockland counties were surprised to find their names and addresses listed on a map posted by The Journal News on Sunday. Users can click any dot on the map to see which of their neighbors has a permit for a gun.

The map sparked more than 500 comments from readers within a day of its appearance on the website, many of them voicing outrage at the paper’s decision to make the information public.

“This is CRAZY!! why in the world would you post every licensed gun owner information?? What do you hope to accomplish by doing this. This is the type of thing you do for sex offenders not law abiding gun owners. What next? should i hang a flag outside my house that says I own a gun? I am canceling my subscription with your paper today!!!” said commenter Curtis Maenza.

“How about a map of the editorial staff and publishers of Gannett and Journal News with names and addresses of their families…,” wrote commenter George Thompson.

All of the names and addresses were compiled through public records. The paper also requested the information from Putnam County, which is still compiling the records for publication, according to The Journal News’ website.

In a statement to ABC News, The Journal News said its readers “are understandably interested to know about guns in their neighborhoods,” because of the conversation about gun control on its website after the shooting in Newtown, Conn., last week.

“We obtained the names and addresses of Westchester and Rockland residents who are licensed to own handguns through routine Freedom of Information law requests. We also requested information on the number and types of guns owned by permit holders, but officials in the county clerks offices in Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties maintained that those specifics were not public record,” the statement read.

“New York’s top public-records expert, Robert Freeman, disagrees,” it added.

The paper declined to answer further questions about the map.

Source: http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2012/12/newspaper-publishes-gun-owners-names-and-addresses/

 
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White House’s business adviser says China’s ‘state-run communism’ works

December 11, 2012


The chairman of President Barack Obama’s job council has endorsed China’s style of crony capitalism, saying “state-run communism may not be your cup of tea, but their government works.”

Jeff Immelt is the dual-hatted chairman of the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, and of General Electric, a huge company with businesses in many domestic and international sectors, including China.

He used a Dec. 10 television interview to suggest that China’s type of state-run capitalism has been great for business while lamenting the state of the American economy.

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2012/12/11/white-houses-business-adviser-says-chinas-state-run-communism-works/#ixzz2EqvRRBab

 
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Two Roads Diverged: Jim DeMint Leaves U.S. Senate for Heritage Foundation Presidency

By: Erick Erickson - December 6th, 2012 at 10:29 AM

I got the call before the news went out. Jim DeMint, the standard bearer of the conservative movement in America and conservative king maker, is leaving the United States Senate.

He will succeed Ed Feulner as President of the Heritage Foundation.

While my initial reaction was one of sadness that we are losing the clearest voice in the Senate for conservatives, the upside on Jim DeMint’s departure from the Senate is mind boggling. Mitch McConnell likes it when people compare McConnell to Darth Vader, seemingly clueless that Vader lost the Death Star twice to a rag tag group of rebels in really beat up, hand-me-down spaceships.

If McConnell smiles at hearing the news Jim DeMint is leaving the Senate, he should remember Obi Wan Kenobi telling him . . . errrr . . . Darth Vader, “If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you could possibly imagine.” Jim DeMint’s power in the conservative movement just grew exponentially. A man who was going to retire in four years anyway, will now be leading the conservative movement from its base of operations for years to come.

Without Jim DeMint we would most likely not presently have in the United States Senate Pat Toomey, Rand Paul, Mike Lee, Marco Rubio, Jeff Flake, Ron Johnson, and Ted Cruz. We would not have a Republican establishment that now worries conservatives might actually primary them.

Without Jim DeMint we would still have a conservative movement that is part and parcel the Republican Party in name, word, and deed. DeMint showed the Republican Party can be challenged from within and that conservatism can be distinctly voiced from within the party moving it right, not moving with it...

Read the entire article at: http://www.redstate.com/2012/12/06/two-roads-diverged-jim-demint-leaves-u-s-senate-for-heritage-foundation-presidency/

 
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