'Anger is not an agenda': Sen. Mike Lee plays GOP peacemaker in D.C. speech (+video)

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  • play by the rules SOUTH JORDAN, UT
    Nov. 3, 2013 7:14 p.m.

    Mike Lee is the son of a great University President who models his ideology after Ezra Taft Benson. I cannot think of a better framework to make intelligent and well reasoned decisions regarding the fate of a Republic in moral and economic decline.

  • NeilT Clearfield, UT
    Nov. 3, 2013 7:46 a.m.

    Granted The ACA is flawed. All Republicans want to do is gut it. They had an opportunity to fix healthcare under Bush and did nothing. Do we really want a healthcare system where being unemployed means loosing your health care insurance. If Republicans really cared about families, the poor and middle class they would have enacted health care reform. People still like parts of Obama care. Lee is in trouble and he knows it

  • dski HERRIMAN, UT
    Nov. 1, 2013 5:02 p.m.

    If Republicans political leaning are the same as Democrats, why do we have two parties? It seems we have too many people with amnesia when it comes to Democrats outlandish behavior. To pass the Obamacare debacle (its a fee not a tax) democrats told everyone to pass the bill before they can read it. That's how corrupt they are. Obama claimed that the Obamacare bill will cost roughly 900 billion dollars in 10 years and not a penny will be added to the national deficit. The GAO report last February that Obamacare will add 6.2 triain. Thats for sure.fice aglected to ofllion dollars to the deficit. What brought Mike Lee's discussion to this point was Obamacare. It is a disaster. Democrats can't see that. All these problems were known by the Democrats but they withheld these information until after the election last year. Obama is the biggest fraud Americans and the Democrats fall for. Then again, as long as someone sles is paying, why not. Mike Lee will be re-elected to office again. Thats for sure.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Nov. 1, 2013 12:19 p.m.

    Don't Feed the Trolls
    Salt Lake City, UT
    "Utah's junior senator told an audience at the conservative Heritage Foundation that such an agenda should focus on ending immobility among the poor, insecurity in the middle class and the "cronyist privilege" enjoyed by the wealthy."

    So he's going from the Tea Party to the Democrats?

    3:02 p.m. Oct. 31, 2013



    BTW - yours is the best comment on this thread.

  • Don't Feed the Trolls Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 31, 2013 3:02 p.m.

    "Utah's junior senator told an audience at the conservative Heritage Foundation that such an agenda should focus on ending immobility among the poor, insecurity in the middle class and the "cronyist privilege" enjoyed by the wealthy."

    So he's going from the Tea Party to the Democrats?

  • RedShirtUofU Andoria, UT
    Oct. 31, 2013 2:18 p.m.

    To "Happy Valley Heretic" what does that have to do with the fact that Lee and Cruz, along with the House of Representatives had passed a bill long before the shutdown to prevent the shutdown (September 20th). Between the senate rejecting the plan to keep the government open and the shutdown, the House along with Senate Republicans wanted to fund various parts of the government.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    Oct. 31, 2013 1:13 p.m.


    Are you forgetting that little rule change on the eve of the shutdown by boener.

    Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), presiding over the chamber, told Van Hollen that the rule he was asking to use had been "altered" and he did not have the privilege of bringing that vote to the floor. In the ensuing back and forth, Chaffetz said the recently passed House Resolution 368 trumped the standing rules. Where any member of the House previously could have brought the clean resolution to the floor under House Rule 22, House Resolution 368 -- passed on the eve of the shutdown -- gave that right exclusively to the House majority leader, Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia.
    "The Rules Committee, under the rules of the House, changed the standing rules of the House to take away the right of any member to move to vote to open the government, and gave that right exclusively to the Republican Leader," said Van Hollen. "Is that right?"
    "The House adopted that resolution," replied Chaffetz.

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    Oct. 31, 2013 12:13 p.m.

    To "Esquire" I assume you are talking about Harry Reid or Obama. It is well documented that Lee and Cruze along with the House Republicans did everything they could to avoid a shutdown. The House passed a bill that would have funded the government, minus the ACA. That would have avoided the shutdown. Then, when Reid and Obama refused that bill, they offered many smaller spending bills that would have prevented the shut down.

    In light of what happened, the only logical conclusion is that Reid and Obama wanted the government to shut down.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Oct. 31, 2013 11:43 a.m.

    @ HBZion, what ideas and solutions? There are none! He led the charge on the shutdown. You are either uninformed or you are part of an effort to rewrite history because it didn't go so well for Lee. Wow.

    Oct. 31, 2013 10:23 a.m.

    Semator Lee is just showing what we already know about all politicians: They say what the group they are speaking to wants to hear. Republicans have their tails between their legs over this most recent fiasco, and want to hear a concilliatory tone from the tea party.

    Lee is still a Washington insider masquerading as a grass roots reformist.

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    Oct. 31, 2013 10:04 a.m.

    To "one old man" it is the lowest since Obama took office, which isn't saying much. Yes, the deficit was growing at a very slow pace during the shut down. The budget deficit is still larger now than it was 10 years ago. Didn't Obama promise to cut the deficit in half by 2011, and that was the Bush deficits of $400 billion.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Oct. 31, 2013 8:52 a.m.

    A report out this morning shows that the deficit spending right now is the lowest it has been in years and years. Obama and the Democrats have finally managed to slow the spending spree that came about in the eight years President Cheney and his little friend were in the White House.

    But truth is foreign to conservatives, isn't it?

  • On the other hand Riverdale, MD
    Oct. 30, 2013 10:25 p.m.

    Unfortunately for Senator Lee, actions speak a lot louder than words.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 5:44 p.m.

    The desperate speech shows his diminished status in shutting down government. The tea party is almost over and he should resign.

  • HBZion Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 5:16 p.m.

    I applaud Senator Lee for approaching the nations problems with ideas and solutions. Don't shutdown, but come to the table and work to solve the nations problems together as Americans.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Oct. 30, 2013 3:59 p.m.

    Isn't this like listening to Mike Lee give a motivational speech on getting rich quick in Apline mansion real estate investments?

    [i.e., Do as I say, not as I do...]

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Oct. 30, 2013 2:36 p.m.

    Mike Lee has alienated ALL Democrats,
    Mike Lee has pushed aside MOST Independants,
    Mike Lee has castigated MANY Republicans,
    Mike Lee has hurt ALL Americans.

    Most likely,
    He will never Chair a Senate Committee,
    He will never be asked for suggestions or be asked to participate in high level Senate meetings,
    He will never be asked to be part of a bi-partisan ANYTHING for evermore.
    He will be a Political Pariah, and seen as avoided to steer away from "guilt by association" by other GOP Senators.

    Is THAT the sort of representative the tiny population of Utah (all 0.97% of the total US population) needs in Washington?

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    Oct. 30, 2013 2:34 p.m.

    To "Open Minded Mormon" lets check your myths against the GAO published tables.

    According to the GAO this is the debt at the end of each ear that Clinton was President:

    Year Gross Debt (millions)
    1991 $3,598,178
    1992 $4,001,787
    1993 $4,351,044
    1994 $4,643,307
    1995 $4,920,586
    1996 $5,181,465
    1997 $5,369,206
    1998 $5,478,189
    1999 $5,605,523
    2000 $5,628,700
    2001 $5,769,881

    Tell me which year the debt decreased, The smallest increase was $23 Billion.

    See "Clinton, Gingrich and the balanced budget myth" in Washington Times.

    The projections for continued growth and paying down the debt relied on the economy continuing to grow past 2000 like it during the 1990s. The problem with was the recession that occured at the end of Clinton's presidency. It slowed down the rate of growth, killing any future possibility of surplusses.

  • CKS007 Clearfield, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 1:57 p.m.

    Mike Lee had his chance to show us he could do the job of working with the other members of Congress. He failed. I will not vote for him and I will assist any campaign to vote him out of office.

  • The Hammer lehi, utah
    Oct. 30, 2013 1:24 p.m.

    I would like to see the follow through from Mike Lee. He is not a bad guy but he has helped sow a lot of division in the Republican party and he has not helped our leadership out in stating clear objectives for us to achieve. He needs to help his followers help establish trusted leadership and then help them to understand our leadership will try and do everything possible to move our platform forward and also give clear guidance on what hills we stand and fight and what hills we let go of in order to outmanuever our opponents. Retreat is not defeat as long as we move to a better defensive or offensive position but it needs to be with the support of leadership and the key movement leaders in the party.

  • happy2bhere clearfield, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 1:01 p.m.

    To those of you who seem to think Reagan would have been so main stream and working with the Democrats, the Democrat Party of his day was not near as left wing, uncomprimising, namely Obama, Reid, and Pelosi, and extreme as to pass the most expensive legislation in American history without one Republican vote. No, Reagan was lucky. He had Democrats who actually wanted to compromise. This bunch will tell Republicans to go pound sand if they can, and not one of you Democrats can refute that because your Party proved it with the passage of the ACA. Thanks for the mess Democrats, but it is and will be all one you. And I'm sure Reagan will be happy that it is.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Oct. 30, 2013 12:54 p.m.

    Cambridge, MA
    The funny thing that the nay-sayers are missing is the fact that you are wrong.

    over the past 30 years the deficit has increased every year.
    [Fact check -- under Clinton the deficit not slowed from increasing, but in fact actually decreased]

    However, you should look at the spending that the Democrats have given us. Over the past 20 years, the Democrat Presidents have allowed the debt to go up the most.

    I call you on this one RedShirt --
    Under President Bill Clinton, not only did deficit spending reverse, but the debit turn to a $5 Trillion Surplus but the end of his Presidency -- only to watch GW Bush waste it in no time, and then spend an addition $8 Trillion before throwing in the towel and going back to Texas, leaving Obama and the American people with HIS mess to clean-up.]

  • lket Bluffdale, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 12:32 p.m.

    he is a rich guy. thats all that gets into office. when they made the super pacs leagal the repulic died. if you want to coplain complain about what is realing killing our country. as for lee giving tax breaks when you have no money is just to get votes. i dont mind paying more taxes if i get something for it. why do we pay oil companies to look for oil when they are making record peofits? why do we pay corporations to not grow food when they are making record profit?

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    Oct. 30, 2013 12:18 p.m.

    The funny thing that the nay-sayers are missing is the fact that Lee is right. If you look at some of the elections around the US where there was a highly conservative canidate and a moderate to liberal incumbant, the conservative has won the primary election when they have a clear conservative message.

    To "Spellman789" over the past 30 years the deficit has increased every year. However, you should look at the spending that the Democrats have given us. Over the past 20 years, the Democrat Presidents have allowed the debt to go up the most. Bush averaged $400 billion/yr. Obama has averaged about $1.1 Trillion/yr. That accounts for the past 13 years, when you include Clinton, the Democrats still come out spending more. If you look at increases in debt as a percent of GDP, it only gets worse for the Democrats.

    To "bungalow" it isn't just Republicans that call him that. There are many independants and others that say the same thing. If you look at some of the polling data out there, they find that the nation has become more polarized (divided) since Obama got into office.

  • Eliot Genola, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 12:03 p.m.

    "Amen to most of the above. I and the five voters in my family as well as numerous friends will not forget how Mike Lee divided the Republican Party at a crucial time. He has good principles but used poor political skills. Anyone but Mike Lee in 2016. How can a Senator be impeached? Could we end this sooner?"

    So for which offense would you like to impeach Sen. Lee? Good principles or poor politics?

  • Something to think about Ogden, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 11:55 a.m.

    The headline should just read: "Mike Lee plays GOP". He 'played' them alright.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Oct. 30, 2013 11:29 a.m.

    Lee compared the party's position now to the 1970s, when conservative activists were pushing Ronald Reagan as a presidential candidate. Reagan lost his 1976 bid to an establishment incumbent, but the movement was vindicated in 1980.


    Reagan lost the 1976 to the incumbent President of the Untied States who was already a Republican and already sitting in the WhiteHouse - Gerald Ford.

    How DARE these Tea-Party extremeists extolling Ronald Reagan!
    Reagan would be publically crucifed as a RINO by Mike Lee and the rest of the uber-far-right-wing who keep espousing his good name!

    Reagan pushed for and got handgun and assault weapon bans,
    Passed the prelude to the ACA [Obamacare] with the The Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act,
    Increased the Debt ceiling 17 times,
    Increased Government spending,
    Increased the size AND scope of the Federal Government,
    Granted Amnesty to illegal immigrants,
    signed pro-choice laws,
    He even COMPROMISED with Democrats to get things done!

    No wonder he was succesful,
    He was BIG Tent --

    While the TeaParty purges the GOP with political purity litmus tests from within --
    and not even trying to woo the 80% of the rest of America from without.

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 11:25 a.m.

    Who was it that said...?

    "But however justified, frustration is not a platform. Anger is not an agenda. And outrage, as a habit, is not even conservative," he said, describing successful political movements as "about identifying converts, not heretics."

    mike lee.

    Frustration IS mike lee's platform.

    Anger IS mike lee's agenda.

    Outrage IS mike lee's habit.

    Politics for mike lee IS not about finding converts, it IS about demonizing any who are not purer than pure true believers like himself.

    "...His legacy will end up being likened to a third-rate Joe McCarthy...".

    Comparing mike lee to a third rate joe mccarthy IS an insult to third rate joe mccarthy's.

  • Fred44 Salt Lake City, Utah
    Oct. 30, 2013 11:21 a.m.

    happy2bhere-Ronald Reagan could not have been the republican nominee today, he was was to liberal and willing to compromise for the tea party crowd.

    Truth-I always love the term "low information voter" would that be anyone who doesn't agree with you and Rush?

  • Lane Myer Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 10:39 a.m.

    "But however justified, frustration is not a platform. Anger is not an agenda. And outrage, as a habit, is not even conservative,"


    I thought that was what the WHOLE republican party was about. Frustration with democrats, anger that we don't have a republican president and outrage that congress passed the ACA. That is all I have seen from Lee and company for the last 5 years. They pushed me away. I'm independent as can be now.

  • RSLfanalways West Valley, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 9:42 a.m.

    We have two great congressmen. Orin Hatch is a flip flopper that just goes whichever way the wind is blowing and Mike Lee is just incompetent. But as Utahan’s we will probably vote for them again we love to forget the past.

  • TRUTH Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 9:28 a.m.

    So many low information voters comments on here........it's time to throw out the old regime of McCain/hatch and embrace Cruz/Lee! Obama has failed at every corner and the tea party is now at 50% approval ratings and climbing!

  • happy2bhere clearfield, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 9:16 a.m.

    Ironic that Mike Lee and Ted Cruz might end up being the heros of all this by next election. Reminds me of how so many Republicans were so opposed to Rush Limbaugh saying that he wanted Obama to fail. Now we see why. If only Obama had failed in getting the ACA passed, we would not be in this mess. Hang in there Mike. People thought Reagan was a right wing nut case too. Even members of his own party.

  • Mike in Sandy Sandy, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 8:47 a.m.


  • mohokat Ogden, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 8:11 a.m.

    Yep Sen. Lee is a bad guy. He was in favor of defunding the biggest lie thats been told in modern history. All you who are bad mouting Lee must not be paying attention to whats happening right now. Seems to me Lee and Cruz were on a pretty noble mission. Seems as though they smelled a giant rat.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 8:10 a.m.

    Lee's rationalizations speak of a Senator who lost, who can't get his way, and is not taking it very well. He is without question the most ineffective Senator Utah has ever had. He does not understand the legislative process, let alone the concept of a legislative body. For the sake of the nation, Lee, along with his cohorts Cruz and Rubio, should be retired by the voters. In all my years, I have never seen such a train wreck in the Senate.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    Oct. 30, 2013 8:05 a.m.

    Things didn't quite play out the way he planned so now he reinvents himself. Meet Mike the peacemaker. That's called being a politician.

  • Sal Provo, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 7:43 a.m.

    Amen to most of the above. I and the five voters in my family as well as numerous friends will not forget how Mike Lee divided the Republican Party at a crucial time. He has good principles but used poor political skills. Anyone but Mike Lee in 2016. How can a Senator be impeached? Could we end this sooner?

  • Bored to the point of THIS! Ogden, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 7:16 a.m.

    Lee's already trying to 'rebuild' his image. To quote Roger Daultry (sp?) of the Who... I won't be fooled again!

  • Doug10 Roosevelt, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 7:13 a.m.

    Mr. Lee is at it still, any press is better than no press.

    He ran and gained recognition as a tea party member now is saying not to use that name. Maybe because he soiled it as bad as it could be.

    Mr. Lee is a bad an example as Washington has of people who have their own agenda and they go to Washington to promote it. Now he wants to be a peacemaker and make amends, something he refused to do when the countries credit worthiness was on the line.

    Mr. Lee is unwilling to compromise which works in a perfect world but has thus far been a failed experiment in Washington.

    I am certain he will continue to garner attention from media as that seems to be his specialty until the next election when the people from Utah who got short sheeted will return him to the ranks of a fulltime Utah resident.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 6:51 a.m.

    Too late. He divided the party publicly and now the tea party is on it's own.

  • hamaca Baton Rouge, LA
    Oct. 30, 2013 5:58 a.m.

    Yes, unity is crucial...as long as it involves everyone supporting Lee's agenda, right?

  • Fred44 Salt Lake City, Utah
    Oct. 30, 2013 5:51 a.m.

    The remaking of Mike Lee, sounds like a sequel to another movie called the remaking of Mitt Romney. Mr. Lee is trying to make a splash on the national stage but he will fail in the same way Mitt Romney did because at the end of the day people will be asking "will the real Mike Lee stand up'?

    I have an idea, rather than make speeches how about do the peoples work. How about coming up with an alternative to the ACA that you think is horrible. Anyone can Monday morning quarterback, but it takes real leadership to create and then pass a better plan.

  • Mark from Montana Davis County, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 5:37 a.m.

    After throwing his temper tantrum and shutting down the government in the process, Lee now wants people to like him. I will not forget what Lee did, how he did it, and the results. I will vote for anyone running against him, pulse or no.

  • Bob K porland, OR
    Oct. 30, 2013 2:52 a.m.

    I can't believe that a highly educated State had such a lapse, to elect Sen. Lee. Although he is making a show of peacemaking now, he was part of the group that spent all of the Congress' time on trying to destroy ONE piece of legislation, rather than taking a pause on that and passing the budget, immigration law, and (heaven forbid, it would help Obama) a jobs bill.

    I believe most DN readers consider themselves Christians, and many are lds members.
    How can it be Christian to hold the country hostage to an agenda of discrediting the President, ahead of doing one's job and helping America's problems?

    If Obamacare is so bad -- then do your jobs to make the country strong, and let it have its problems, or even fail. Or (heaven forbid, because it might help the President), work with it to make it succeed.

    The majority of America believes that the republicans in Congress and the Senate are more interested in obstruction than in improving the lot of everyday Americans.
    Do you wonder why?

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Oct. 30, 2013 12:00 a.m.

    He attempted. But that ship has sailed, and he wasn't on it.

  • bandersen Saint George, UT
    Oct. 29, 2013 9:34 p.m.

    This is not about Lee, it is about standing up for the right principles, something that many democratic and Republican Party members lost along the way of becoming a socialist country. it is not about changing Lee or Obama. it is about changing ourselves and returning this country to its roots. if Citizens begin to be more responsible, political parties will cease to exist and government will be limited to its constitutional limits and powers, something most politicians abhor, including our current president and most of our representatives. I'm just the messenger.

  • Spellman789 Syracuse, UT
    Oct. 29, 2013 9:29 p.m.

    If you look at history over the last 20 years, whenever a republican was in the whitehouse spending increased as did the national debt, no so much with a democrat. It is history, look it up.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    Oct. 29, 2013 9:20 p.m.

    Hilarious. Mike Lee asking Republicans to move away from the "cronyism of the wealthy" is like asking them to give up a kidney. Without the self-obsession of the wealthy, there would be no Republican party.

  • Mark B Eureka, CA
    Oct. 29, 2013 8:59 p.m.

    Well, that's just it. DN 2 is asking Hatch to "throw his full support" to Lee. How likely is that when Hatch has, as DN2 points out, been in the Senate since about the time Lee learned to read? I'm thinking, it's hard to be both destroyer wannabe AND Peacemaker.

  • DN Subscriber 2 SLC, UT
    Oct. 29, 2013 7:38 p.m.

    Senator Lee is right, all conservatives do need to work together.

    Therefore, I hope that self-proclaimed "conservative" Orrin Hatch will throw his full support and touted clout and seniority behind Lee's conservative efforts to change things in Washington.

    For too long, complacent and compliant Republicans have quietly talked about being conservatives, but quickly surrendered and were co-conspirators with the big spending Democrats in running up the debt, expanding the government reach into all aspects of our lives, and compromising everything while Democrats compromise nothing.

    Brave Senator Lee for trying to change things in Washington that are broken, and have been broken for a decade or more. (And Hatch has been there for 36 years!)