Powerline’s Predicament: Bought And Paid For By Karl Rove

October 25, 2010

Update: To be clear and fair here, there are other ads rotating through at Powerline. So, clicking back may yield a different look. But the point holds. Powerline is part and parcel of the Republican establishment. That may make them more viable for ads and they're fully entitled to capitalize on that. I'm not begrudging them that. But in these political times, it's fair to point out which side they're on. Between them and Ed at Hot Air, they've also been an on going commercial for Pawlenty the last three days. For better, or worse, the post November battle lines are being drawn. I've never been a big fan of lutefish, myself.

h/t Instapundit. While I'm no fan of Huckabee, he's closer to the truth here, than is Powerline's resident lobbyist Mirengoff – who continues to dump on O'Donnell, more than Huckabee, in the post. But Powerline's real problem is that the only two serious ads on site, that cost serious dollars, are a full banner and large box ad with the same disclaimer: "Paid for by American Crossroads." While legitimate and I'm a big fan of blog advertising, in this case, that may be the most instructive bit of information here. Fairly, or not, they undermine Mirengoff's screed in defense of Rove. And neither Rove, nor Powerline, were truly there as more conservative elements of the Right began to surface and succeed. And that's a fair point to make given Mirengoff's flacking for Rove, while echoing him on O'Donnell and, in effect, being paid to do it.

Mike Huckabee has blasted Karl Rove and the "Republican Party establishment" for the "elitism" and "country club attitude" that he claims has driven Republican criticism of Christine O'Donnell. Huckabee says that he too was the victim of the such elitism when he ran for president. In Huckabee's view, both he and O'Donnell suffer because they "didn't go to the right school and [attend] the proper cocktail parties on the D.C. social circuit."

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  1. Huckabee’s a cop-killer and that’s why he doesn’t get my vote, no matter how many Bibles he’s thumped or cows he’s milked. He’s also a big reason we got McCain in 2008.

  2. anon says:

    How the hell can you stick up for cap and trade Huckabee? what’s next? obamacare?

  3. Dan Riehl says:

    what are you talking about idiot? I’m not defending Huckabee politically. But he’s correct on the merits on this one. Do you have a degree in stoopid, or is it a hobby with you?

  4. Brian says:

    Hinderaker and Johnson are the only reasons to read Powerline.
    I’m no fan of the Huckster either or Pawlenty or Romney or the usual suspects that The Establishment Right has preordained fit for lineup. Northeastern Liberals all. Except for the Huckster who’s just a southern-fried fraud honing his Paul Harvey impersonation.
    What they do understand is the importance of establishing a frontrunner early. Like a high bet on a low pocket pair, these guys do not understand that the Democrats are not going to be folding as they attempt to bluff their co-citizens on the right with better hands.

  5. Carlos says:

    I disagree.. I see Huckabee in the same light as Reagan.. As Gov Reagan raised a few fees and taxes as did huckabee.. but as time went on Reagan got more assertive and conservative (as did Huckabee). But I will not be voting Huckabee, he is a little too moderate and good willed.. and we really need an SOB in there to reverse this curse.

  6. anon says:

    Not that I don’t do idiotic things, like wander over here (rarely) and watch you twist yourself through whiney, paranoid mental gymnastics to attack some perceived slight from Powerline. Call me an idiot (or “stoopid”- really?), fine, but sometime you might want to get that beam in your eye looked at.

  7. M from M says:

    “…we really need an SOB in there…”
    I have a feeling Sarah Palin could be just that, when she needs to. And I mean that as a compliment!

  8. Jen Kuznicki says:

    Thanks Dan, it’s getting more and more clear who to trust.

  9. The folding in of Rove’s money into a lot of conservative races is a potentially corrupting influence that might compromise the allegiances of many of our Tea Party candidates. Let’s not be blind to that. The Bush/Rove machine that destroyed the GOP is still raising and spending a lot of money.

  10. Love you, Dan. We are generally on the same wavelength on most things, even if many others do net “get” it the same way. When you wrote the “Glenn Beck is an ass” post last year, I was the only one out of about 50 commenters who defended you, since you seemed to be one of a precious few who got that Beck is an egomaniac and moronic, wannabe philospher-king. And a bit of a menace.
    As for Powerline, I generally do not pay much attention to them. (although they did some good work two years ago, when Stuart Smalley was stealing the MN Senate seat) However, going after them over ads on their site seems a little ridiculous. I am looking at your page right now and the first thing that I see is an MSNBC ad feed. While that is just part of the Pulse360 network you use here, someone coming here for the first time might think, “Oh great. Here is a site that is giving the network that employs the likes of Chris Matthews and Rachel Madcow some revenue.” And then leave. As they say, first impressions generally last the longest.
    As for the likes of SuckAndBlow, I care little for what he says, good or ill. He is the biggest reason we got McCain as the GOP nominee, since he teamed up with Johnny Mac’s campaign to knock out Romney and whored his delegates out to McCain for just that purpose. And the reason we got Obama is because of McCain. Most 4th graders would have been able to beat him and soundly. I will NEVER forgive him for that. (Not that I am any Romney fan, but he was the best of those three and probably would have thrashed Obama in the election)
    In any case, to the real subject at hand, which is the RNC and it’s appendages. The train has already left the station and they are already an irrelevancy. They just do not realize it. What I have dubbed The Great Cleansing has already begun in earnest. At the grassroots, local, state, national and soon, the party leadership levels. They either clean up their act or they will be Whig Partied out in the very near future. Eight days from now is just Step One of this process. It will take a good three election cycles to get the stale stench of RINOism out of the House and especially the Senate.

  11. leilani says:

    Really, this is slimey, Dan. After you got smeared by the DC for being on the take & tailoring your posts accordingly, you’re gonna oh-so-casually do the very same thing to other people?
    Honestly, I’m gradually finding out here that TrueConservatives aren’t anywhere near what I always thought was conservative at all & I’m realizing I’m due for a painfully honest re-evaluation.
    So gee, I wonder where do small gov, low tax tea partying pro-lifers like me go who aren’t up for all the ‘more conservative than thou’ crapola you TC guys spend all your time flinging around at other conservatives?
    What should those of us who aren’t willing to turn a blind eye to R candidates who’ve got serious liberal Democrat-style ethical problems call ourselves if we’re not True Conservatives according to experts like you?
    It would seem to me that TCers seem to have as big a weakness for aggressively overreaching as Dems do, and yall haven’t even won anything yet.
    But you do realize, don’t you, that the American people aren’t likely to be any more happy with arrogant overreach coming from the insular TC crowd as they were with it coming from the Obama, Pelosi & Reid crew?

  12. Sandy says:

    non- From your first comment on this thread, you prove that either A) You cannot read, or B) You deliberately misconstrue Dan Riehl’s words in an attempt to make him look stooopid, or wacky.
    You admit that you do stooopid things like wandering here to Dan’s site, and, you claim rarely. Obviously you don’t know what the meaning of “rarely” is, as I’ve seen comments by you a whole lot more than rarely. If you come here stoopidly, then you could smarten up very quickly, and stop coming here to torture everyone with your childish and really stooooopid remarks.

  13. leilani: last week Mirengoff opined that the most interesting governor’s race is Meg Whitman vs Jerry Brown in CA. Why is that interesting? In a year where voters are kicking out big-spending liberal Democrats the GOP decides that in CA they are going to offer two big-spending democrats in CA? Whitman has now spent over $160 MILLION of her own money and according to the polls released this morning, trails Brown by 11%. California HATES Brown but the GOP has found the very candidate that Californians like even less. And BTW, the other McCain/Rove candidate Carly Fiorina is losing to Barbara Boxer.
    The problem with CA is not the voters so much as that the corrupt Republicans that control the GOP in CA keep frustrating the abundant Republican and conservative voters by making it impossible for anyone but a liberal Democrat from getting the GOP nomination. The machine that makes this possible is what Powerline is supporting and what Dan (and Mark Levin last week) are complaining about.

  14. Sandy says:

    I will never understand why Karl Rove has remained someone that anyone ever listens to. He was the architect of the Bush “Compassionate Conservative” destruction to the Republican party, aka pre-socialism. FOX didn’t need to give Williams more time on air, in order to be “fair and balanced.” They already had Rove to be the alternate voice of small government conservatism. Rove self-destructed on the night of O’Donnell’s winning the DE primary on the Hannity show. Rove is as bad as Obama’s legislation, they get shoved down your throat weather you want them or not. No thanks, there isn’t an hour left on FOX worth watching.

  15. King Samir Shabazz (D-black panther!) says:

    Dat huck a, hucka, uh, bee, he be lookin’ too much like dat cracker Gomer Pyle ta’ be gittin’ duh panther vote!

  16. David R. Graham says:

    As Dan says, Huckabee is right on the merits of this one. Not unrelated: Dartmouth, from whence comes the Powerline crew, is almost uniformly the source of top position holders at Wall Street financial firms. Harvard and somewhat Yale may have SCOTUS, but Dartmouth has Wall Street finance. That always factors at Powerline. I don’t know which Ivy has Wall Street law.

  17. anon says:

    I don’t think I’m alone here in thinking that, as of the last month or so (when rarely began to kick in), no misconstruing is needed to consider some of Dan’s posts wacky. I don’t think I’ve ever called him stoopid in any form. Still, I applaud your thought police efforts Sandy, and I do apologize for torturing you.

  18. Moobs says:

    thought police?

  19. wombat-socho says:

    Pawlenty’s not one of those lutefisk-chewing Norskies, he’s a mick from South Saint Paul. Whatever his other political sins, he’s done a good job stonewalling tax and spending increases up there against a solidly DFL legislature. We could do a lot worse than pick him as a Presidential candidate, and have.

  20. gary gulrud says:

    “We could do a lot worse than pick him as a Presidential candidate, and have.”
    I’ll buy that, but Christie, Pawlenty and Daniels, the “executive” stars going in are all a bit weak for national campaigning, leading the disparate legions into artillery fire.
    I just don’t see a victor among them, though Christie is the class of that field.

  21. Oxbay says:

    I think you’re wrong when you say Mirengoff is being paid to parrot the same opinion as Rove. Those Powerline guys are telling you what they think. They’re not telling you what others want them to think. Agree or disagree with any of them I think you’re wrong to question Mirengoff’s integrity.
    P.S. I don’t personally know any of those guys, have never met them, and probably never will.

  22. Pasadena Phil — That LA Times poll is a mess, but you would think ANYbody could outdraw Jerry freaking Brown.
    The thing is, the people in this state DON’T remember him by and large, and won’t listen when you warn them.

  23. newrouter says:

    more stupid from powerline paul
    This lesson has more bearing on 2012 and 2016 than it does on this election, where the die is largely cast. Whatever one makes of this year’s Alaska Senate race, we should be wary “warts and all” and “my flaws are your flaws” arguments as a general matter going forward.

  24. Tennwriter says:

    We’re walking into the post-November debate between the Establishment and their Libertarian chihuahuas versus the Base and those smart enough or cool minded enough to ally with the Base.
    Dan Riehl falls into the cool-minded enough category, and good for him.
    I think the Establishment has demonstrated that they are not loyal to the Republican Party what with Lisa Murkowski and Mike Castle. We need to discover a wider vision of renewal that will like a great wave from the sea, obliterate the days old sand castle of the prison we are in, and leave a new, clean beach to mold a greater destiny from.
    Reagan and God freed the world from Soviet tyranny. We can, if we humble ourselves, and seek His face, be freed from the chains of debt and overweening government, and the rule of the unqualified arrogances who sit above us.
    It is time and past time to open the leadership up beyond the progeny of a few once great ministerial schools so that Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin do not have to struggle under a simply stupid prejudgice and bigotry.
    America is founded on a pride in ability, not on patents of nobility, however achieved or granted. This new aristocracy needs to be squelched by all good Americans of any party. We cast off King George. What need we have of King Obama?

  25. gary gulrud says:

    “What should those of us who aren’t willing to turn a blind eye to R candidates who’ve got serious liberal Democrat-style ethical problems call ourselves if we’re not True Conservatives according to experts like you?”
    The primaries were four weeks and more ago. These points about integrity were taken into account by voters who had integrity in the forefront of their field of vision.
    Harping on integrity now-we are talking about politicians-is immature, sanctimonius, disingenuous and thoroughly rank. ESAD, Whig.

  26. Tom Cuddihy says:

    So this is what it looks like when a conservative blogger goes wacko-LGF-style to the right instead of to the left.
    Might want to install a 3 second delay on your “post” button, there Dan, or optionally, try giving folks the benefit of the doubt till you know all the facts.

  27. Lenny says:

    On issues and candidates, I’m more in tune with you than Powerline. I read Powerline every day, but only occasionally follow links to you. Why? The guys at Powerline always have class and you have a tendency to go asshole on anyone you disagree with. You have a lot of talent, but you’re a shitty teammate.

  28. AndyS says:

    I partially agree with Lenny above. Only I’m not in tune with you on any thing as I’ve never really read your site before. However, Powerline is, in my opinion, the best conservative blog out there. I’m always looking for more and better, but clearly you will not make the list. Perhaps due to first impression, but I will take what Lenny has to say as warning…
    “The guys at Powerline always have class and you have a tendency to go asshole on anyone you disagree with. You have a lot of talent, but you’re a shitty teammate.”

  29. All Knowing Power says:

    Your opinion about Powerline is just as accurate as your prediction that Christine O’Donnell is going to be Delaware’s next senator. You better stop smokin’ that green stuff.

  30. Lipo Davis says:

    Dan Riehl is a Democrat policial operative and no one should trust him whatsoever.
    Proof? He’s attacking conservatives for holding personal opinions that differ from his own.
    That’s the leftist Democrat Party MO: illiberal, intolerant of dissent and violently doctrinaire.
    He looks like a duck and quacks like a duck. Democrats hate Karl Rove. So does Dan Riehl.
    Democrats hate Power Line. So does Dan Riehl.
    Dan Riehl: just like a Democrat Party leftist.

  31. Jay says:

    You don’t have any clue how advertising works on the internet, do you? Just looking to troll your own bit of traffic off the back of someone else. I’d never heard of you before, but I’ll be sure to avoid you now.

  32. BradnSA says:

    Powerline, Patterico. Maybe you don’t like blogs that start with “P”.

  33. Sharla Lee says:

    Your hits are probably up significantly because Power Line has challenged your perspective. I read PL almost daily and will read back to catch any posts I might have missed, so it equates to daily. They say what they think and they aren’t being paid for their statements. Though they try to present a solid front, they also show openly that they don’t always agree, and they do it with respect and civility. They are also prone to change their minds over time after they have learned more. It is that over-time view that sets them apart from, say, someone that flashes on a statement and an ad and infers “linkage.” On Nov 2, we will witness the “moment when the rise of the progressives began to slow and our country began to heal.” Part of that healing process is not spraying invectives at fellow conservatives, and others, like a mad gunman in a drive-by. David Brooks said something very true yesterday in the NYT, “… as soon as next Wednesday, when, as is their wont, Democrats will flip from complete self-worship to complete self-laceration in the blink of an eye.” Why would conservatives be so short-sighted as to copy the Democrats and to do so days, weeks earlier? It’s time to grow up, to face the challenges we face as a country. And the guys at Power Line do a better job of being adults than most of the prognosticators and pundits out there. Maybe that’s because they have jobs and don’t need to be paid for their opinions.

  34. Gerry says:

    Ads . schmads … if you ain’t using AdBlock Plus, you aint’ browsing!

  35. hang5 says:

    I have enjoyed coming here periodically, but your PowerLine post is a poorly thought through ad hominem attack based upon faulty or nonexistent research and scanty inconclusive evidence. Error 1…Paul is not a lobbyist. Error 2…rotating ad placements that are not controlled by the blog are no more indicative of a particular blog being the pocket of the advertiser at Powerline than they are at your site.
    In short there is some mighty lightweight work on display in this posting. We deserve better.

  36. TheLastBrainLeft says:

    Dan, you were once cool. Now you’re turning into Charles Johnson. Stop pointing your guns at our allies. Keep firing on the ENEMY. That’s not the Powerline guys. It’s not Charles Krauthammer. It’s not Patterico. It’s the socialists in power!

  37. PhilR. says:

    What evidence do you have that Paul Mirengoff is a lobbyist? For what organization does he lobby? Who has he lobbied?
    Aside for the advertisement you cited from “American Crossroads”, what evidence do you have that Powerline is, “…bought and paid for by Karl Rove”?
    If innuendo is all you have, do you realize how much you destroy your own credibility?

  38. Carl Hardwick says:

    >Dan, you were once cool. Now you’re turning into Charles Johnson. Stop pointing your guns at our allies. Keep firing on the ENEMY. That’s not the Powerline guys. It’s not Charles Krauthammer. It’s not Patterico. It’s the socialists in power!
    I agree 100% with TheLastBrainLeft. This is crazy, there are lots of things to day about the Democrats, it’s insane to complain about the Powerline guys. I disagree with them about O’Donnell but to me, they’re still one of the good guys and they’re on our side.
    Conservatives have a good chance to change the course of the country, it is self destructive to stop firing at the enemy and turn your gun on our allies.

  39. Terrye says:

    This is ridiculous. The powerline guys have all kinds of ads at their place, the idea that they have been bought and paid for is just bizarre.
    And Karl Rove is not the enemy either. The other day I heard Rush Limbaugh make some crack about something Rove said and I thought, well if we are on the subject of country club Republicans I am sure that Rush has played golf at country clubs that would not let me in the door. So, why are we yakking about country club Republicans and calling Rove an elitist and attacking the powerline guys? Rove and the Poweline guys are not the problem..the Democrats are for Chrisake.
    The truth is this started with O’Donnell and the fact that some people on the right just could not deal with the fact that there were legitimate problems with her nomination…such as it will take a miracle for her to win. I know I thought the fact that she lied about how many counties she carried in 2008 was a problem…but I guess that makes me a country club elitist Rino too.

  40. gary gulrud says:

    The fundamental, organizing essence of Conservative belief is the experiential truth that ‘self-interest governs human behavior’. A corollary, ‘power corrupts and absolute power absolutely’ is an ancillary truth.
    Any specious argument that integrity be given priority in selecting candidates for political office must be followed, in the next breath, with the dire necessity of ‘term limits’. Failure to do so marks the argument as a tendentious fraud.
    In fact, Gallup, at the beginning of September established that TEA Party affilites comprise 30% of the electorate, nominal Republicans 27%. Moreover Gallup confirmed the earlier reported conviction of 73% of Republican affiliates that their leadership “had lost their way and were unresponsive to their constituency’s concerns”.
    You have no further to look for GOP apparatchiks’ perseverating on the subject of integrity. They have lost control and their meal ticket is jeopardized. That useful idiots found among TEA party adherents only serves as an object lesson against factionalism.
    Their will be no consensus on candidates until the GOP is co-opted or it is plundered and finally discarded.

  41. gary gulrud says:

    “That useful idiots found among TEA party adherents [parrot this drivel-that the experts must be heeded-] only serves as an object lesson against factionalism.”
    Idiots or frauds, take your pick.

  42. Eric B says:

    According to your ads, you’re bought and paid for by MSNBC. Oh noes!
    Your knowledge of internet advertising is clearly lacking, so why not concentrate on things you know more about, like crappy senate candidates. Speaking of which… I just got a Christine O’Donnell ad on Powerline.

  43. Mike Jackson says:

    Yep. Dan Riehl is bought and paid for by MSNBC. Taking cash bribes from those people, Dan?
    Don’t defend yourself, Dan, I can see the ads YOU choose to run.

  44. Richard says:

    Can someone send an alert when Dan Riehl makes an argument on thoroughly researched facts instead of stupid, off the cuff attacks? Don’t worry, an alert won’t ever be needed.
    Huckabee is an opportunist, plain and simple. He’s socially conservative, but he’s definitely not fiscally conservative. He wore his faith on his sleeve in the 2008 primaries, and his piousness just turned me off. So now he’s latched himself to the Tea Party even though a thorough examination of his record as Arkansas governor shows he doesn’t reflect the Tea Party views.

  45. RadicalRon says:

    I read earlier that Newtie’s been dropping hints that he’ll be a candidate for POTUS 2012. Good uck with that, Newtie. You reigned as House Speaker after it was revealed that you were chasing a staff member around the desk and into the sack — at the same time you were herding the cats during Slick Willie’s impeachment hearings.
    Needless to say, Newtie’s unelectable.

  46. spidly says:

    Huckabee. The only guy I disliked more than McCain. At least with McCain you pretty much know your getting half a loaf…that’s a bit stale.
    Dude is a used car salesman and just gives that icky vibe…. maybe something with garterbelts, latex, or underage boys somewhere…
    He reminds me of Hunter S Thompson’s description of Bill Clinton:
    “Mr Bill is our Willy Loman. Clinton is “liked, but not well liked,” not even his best friends and allies believe anything he says. He has the sense of loyalty of a lizard with its tail broken off and the midnight taste of a man who might go on a double-date with the Rev. Jimmy Swaggart.'”
    Exactly why the hell are you picking fights over an unprincipled populist sleeze like Huckabee?

  47. Ken Royall says:

    Well I have been looking to skinny down my bookmarks. Riehl was always down the list but this nonsense just knocked him off. I have problems with Rove in many respects, but he is doing more to get Republicans elected right now than idiots like Riehl will do in his entire life. And the people he is getting behind are not a bunch of RINO’s either. The guys at Powerline are on the right side of things too, I see no reason to smear them. Huckabee? A joke.

  48. spidly says:

    Agree with you but for your assessment of the Huckster as Socially Conservative. As you said he’s an opportunist – he plays the social con when it suits him, but I’m thinking the victims of the 1000-some criminals he set free especially those victimized by Clemmons after Huckster set him free.
    Dude is elected president, you know within 6 months there’s a video that surfaces of him playing guitar for a bunch of little asian boys:
    “I got a song for you children and I think you can sing along and participate if you try! Ahhh 1, 2, 3, 4, Hot in, so hot in here! So hot in, hot, oh! …Check it, got it locked at the top o…So baby tell me what’s the use? I said …It’s getting hot in here, so hot, so take off all your clothes …I am, getting so hot, I wanna take my clothes off …”