Colorado’s 7th U.S. House District
Frazier vs. Perlmutter
George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, as well as their lifelong friends, all recall how both men spoke of becoming President since they were teen-agers.
In the case of Ryan Frazier, his youthful ambitions were not focused on the White House but on politics and public service in general. Growing up in a lower-middle-class neighborhood in Wilmington, N.C., he recalled how “when I was a kid, I thought
that this was a world in which I could make a difference.”
Frazier served five years in the U.S. Navy, worked for the National Security Agency and then settled in Aurora, Colo., with his wife and three children. During that time, he did a lot of reading and listening. And that is how Ryan Frazier developed what he calls “the four pillars of my philosophy: free enterprise, fiscal responsibility, protection of the rights of individuals and keeping government small.”
For eight years, he was an elected councilman in Colorado’s third-largest city. Earlier this year, Frazier won a hotly contested Republican primary to oppose Democratic Rep. Ed Perlmutter in the Centennial State’s 7th District. “When my opponent was first elected in ’06, he said he was going to change Washington,” Frazier recalls. “But after four years, folks are saying Washington changed him.” The conservative hopeful cites the votes Perlmutter (lifetime American Conservative Union rating: 1.33%) cast for the stimulus package and healthcare “reform,” and his co-sponsorship of Big Labor’s cherished “card check” legislation.
“He supports an over-reaching agenda because he votes with Nancy Pelosi 98.3% of the time,” is how Frazier capsulizes Perlmutter.
But echoing the late Jack Kemp’s upbeat conservatism, Frazier runs less on what’s wrong with Perlmutter than what’s right about Frazier. To the GOP hopeful, this means reducing the present 35% corporate tax to the level of the capital gains rate and extending the tax cuts of ’01 and ’03.
Inevitably, Frazier is asked how he feels about becoming one of only a handful of African-American Republicans to serve in Congress if he emerges triumphant in November. His reply: “I haven’t thought much about it. The winning coalition we are building is based on greater opportunity and freedom for all. And that comes in all colors and nationalities.”
(Frazier for Colorado, P.O. Box 140182, Edgewater, Colo. 80214; 303-872-3823; www.frazierforcolorado.com) New York’s 1st U.S. House District
Altschuler vs. Bishop
Call him a small businessman, call him a conservative or a Republican, or call him a typical New Yorker, but Randy Altschuler is running for Congress on the values upon which he has based his life and philosophy: hard work, a free market and the vision of a hassle-free government.
In winning a three-candidate primary for the Republican nomination in New York’s 1st District (Suffolk County), Altschuler had the backing of his fellow pro-lifers, much of the area Tea Party groups, and the New York Conservative Party (which gave the businessman-candidate its ballot line even before he became the GOP nominee). The grandson of Polish immigrants freely admits that his background in politics is minimal, but, as he says, “we live in a time when people who have never been involved are being allured” to the political arena.
Born in modest circumstances and raised by a single mother, Altschuler graduated from Princeton and then worked his way through Harvard Business School as an investment banker with the celebrated firm of Lufkin, Donaldson, and Jenrette. After a stint as a Fulbright Scholar in Austria and working briefly in real estate, the young Altschuler launched Office Tiger, a company that provides document-processing and other support services for start-up companies. Within a few years, the roar of fledgling Office Tiger could be heard nationally, with outlets serving customers both in New York and across America as well as several foreign countries.
Altschuler, with wife Cheryl, was free to do what he chose. But with Cheryl continuing her work as a physician, Randy Altschuler chose a new endeavor: He would run against four-term Democratic Rep. Tim Bishop.
“I began looking at his ratings with all the organizations,” he recalls, and finally opted in favor of making a race “after I realized that this guy was more liberal than [former House Ways and Means Committee Chairman and fellow New York Democrat Charles] Rangel.” Bishop (lifetime American Conservative Union rating: 2%) has voted against a ban on partial-birth abortion, for Democratic-crafted healthcare reform, for cap-and-trade climate legislation, for Big Labor’s cherished “card check” and against the successful surge in Iraq.
In June of last year, Bishop made headlines when hundreds of constituents demonstrated outside a town meeting he was holding in Setauket. Rather than deal with the questions raised by the crowd and their shouts about healthcare and federal bailouts, the congressman was quickly escorted to his car by five county policemen.
“Basically, it’s the Tea Party folks,” was how Bishop staffer Jon Schneider dismissed the crowd when he talked to reporters.
More than a year later, no one will be able to dismiss as just “Tea Party folks” the tens of thousands of angry constituents voting against Bishop and his record. Randy Altschuler says it best himself: “When I go door-to-door or speak to local meetings—and I always take time for anyone with a question—I find that folks worry that the American dream is being compromised by all this debt my opponent is helping Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama run up. Repealing Obamacare and watching what we spend are the start of restoring the American dream. You know I’ll work hard to do this. I’ve lived it.”
(Randy Altschuler for Congress, P.O. Box 657, Stony Brook, N. Y. 11790; www.randyaltschuler.com) Arizona’s 3rd U.S. House District
Quayle vs. Hulburd
“Barack Obama is the worst President in history.”
Perhaps more than the fact that he is the son of Dan and Marilyn Quayle, this salvo from Ben Quayle brought national attention to the Republican nominee for Congress from Arizona’s 3rd District (suburban Phoenix).
In speeches and TV spots in the primary to succeed retiring Rep. John Shadegg (R.-Ariz.), 33-year-old attorney and small businessman Quayle took the fight to Obama himself.
“I didn’t really like saying that, because I have such respect for the presidency,” recalled Quayle. “But his programs so far will leave the next generation a debt in the trillions. He pushed a healthcare bill through Congress that the American people didn’t want and that will drastically alter the doctor-patient relationship. And he apologized for America on several occasions—something no other President again. The case for what I said is strong.”
“Ben was saying what a lot of Republicans think, but don’t say for fear of sounding mean-spirited,” recalled Arizona’s Republican State Chairman Randy Pullen. “And they responded.”
Indeed they did. In his first-ever run for office, young Quayle topped a field of ten Republicans.
In a district that has been in GOP hands since it was first carved up in 1972, Quayle should be a cinch to win. But it’s not necessarily so. Democrats from Washington to the Grand Canyon State did not take kindly to Quayle’s criticism of their leader, so there is strong party support for his Democratic opponent, Jon Hulburd, whose vast family wealth makes him an even more formidable foe to Quayle.
“And he calls himself a moderate but can’t get past the talking points,” observed the Republican hopeful dryly. “Look, he just told the Arizona Republic he would vote for Nancy Pelosi for speaker. As far as I’m concerned, that ends any claim of being ‘moderate.’”
As Hulburd steps up the attack media, Quayle prefers to talk about issues and his agenda for “unleasing the marketplace and increasing opportunity.” To the young conservative, this means cutting both the corporate income tax and the capital gains tax in half (“That will increase competition”) and abolishing the Alternative Minimum Tax altogether.
“And we really have to curtail the size and scope of the Department of Education,” says the GOP nominee, whose father proudly voted against creating the Cabinet-level department conceived by the National Education Association when he was in the House in 1979.
It has been pointed out that Ben Quayle was born on November 5, 1976, just three days after his father won his first term in Congress. What could be a better early birthday present for the young Quayle than his fellow conservatives than to give him the resources and support to win on November 2nd?
(Quayle for Congress, 4247 North 44th Street, Phoenix, AZ, 85018; 602-492-4236; quayleforcongress.com)