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Karl Rove speaks at Woodbridge fundraiser

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Posted: Wednesday, May 15, 2013 12:00 am

Thanks to a restaurant owner with a foundation in politics, Republican political consultant and policy adviser Karl Rove now knows where Woodbridge is.

“It’s my old life and my new life combined here,” said Woodbridge Crossing owner Steve Ding.

Ding previously served as chief of staff for former Rep. Richard Pombo, and was hopping cross country flights several times a week for meetings. Now he’s using his connections and his Woodbrige restaurant to garner support for political newcomers like Rep. Doug LaMalfa of Richvale and bring speakers like Rove to town.

On Saturday, about 15 guests lined up for photos with Rove and LaMalfa, then picked up copies of Rove’s book “Courage and Consequence: My Life as a Conservative in the Fight.”

The crowd included Pombo, Kautz Farms owners John and Gail Kautz, and California Farm Bureau Federation official Kenny Watkins, among others.

They sat down to lunches that ran from $1,000 per person to $2,600 sponsorships.

The group dined on a Delta asparagus soup purée, a maison salad with baby greens, organic beets, d’Anjou pears and candied walnuts, and roasted rack of lamb, with wine from Ironstone Vineyards. Dessert was a blueberry apricot crisp from Phillip’s Farms.

Pombo introduced LaMalfa to the group as the man in Congress who takes on national issues on behalf of farmers.

“When it comes to California agriculture, he is our voice,” he said.

LaMalfa made a short speech thanking his donors and promising to advance the right kinds of issues in the House of Representatives.

Then it was time for Rove to take the floor. He stood up at his place at a middle table, just as the soup course was being served.

Rove spoke on the challenges facing the Republican Party, including President Barack Obama’s handling of the deficit and foreign policy decisions.

“Our president has basically failed to provide the leadership we need to keep the world safe,” Rove said.

Collectively, Rove believes the Republican Party has the numbers and power to take back control in next year’s midterm election.

“This election, we were supposedly all fired up and ready to go, then we had lower turnout than last time,” he said. “Ultimately, I have the confidence that we will win and can introduce policies that will make our country a better place.”

He noted the party will have to avoid “the Todd Akins and the Richard Murdochs.”

“We can’t have guys with the two-step plan: Step one, open mouth; step two, insert foot,” he said.

Rove recommended doing more to better understand the party’s own candidates.

“We need to do opposition research on ourselves,” he said.

Rove addressed job production. At the current rate of production, he said, it will take 15 more months to get the job market back to the same level as in December 2007. Meanwhile, 9 million more people have entered the job market.

Rove also called the recession recovery the worst in history, and the only time when the median family income dropped during a recovery.

But seeing LaMalfa begin to make a name for himself in politics was reassuring, said Rove, who called the freshman Congressman a good guy with down-to-earth common sense.

“We need him to write a good Farm Bill,” he said. “If we don’t get this right, we might not have another chance in our lifetime.”

He ended by saying the GOP needs to show a strong win next year to move forward.

“We are here to do the right thing, and what the founders had in mind for the country, and that’s not the direction we’re headed in,” he said.

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  • Ed Ojeda posted at 11:03 pm on Thu, May 16, 2013.

    Capteo Posts: 15

    Right on Mrs. Erickson! Can't believe this bozo Rove, who helped elect the worst president in history, has the gumption to show his RepubliCON face around these parts. He, Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld should be rotting in prison right now for trying to export democracy at the end of a barrel half-way around the world, and doing it based on so-called intel of WMD. Tens of thousands of brave American military men have missing arms and legs, or worst lost their lives because of these idiots and their lies. The guy is a total farce. No dining for me at Woodbridge Crossings...ever.

  • Thomas Love posted at 10:21 am on Thu, May 16, 2013.

    Thomas Love Posts: 4

    I wonder where wonderkid Ricky Gill was to offer his advice. Wasn't he the candidate who was "the local candidate" and called his opponent a carpetbagger?

    It looks as if he is nowhere to be found. I doubt he is working in the family business, and I don't think he was toiling on the family farm. He bolted out of the Central Valley the moment he lost the election. It is funny and sad that this kid viewed being Congressman as an entry level job. I guess he had the advantage of wealthy parents and their connections to help him get his "first" job.

    Does Rove still believe that Ohio is too close to call for Obama?

  • Eric Barrow posted at 10:12 am on Thu, May 16, 2013.

    Eric Barrow Posts: 1342

    You got to wonder how Lodi could snag such a big name. Could it be that Karl can't even get back on Fox after his election night meltdown? He's finished it's a shame I would like to see the repubs following his advice for the next couple of elections.

  • Larry Hamilton posted at 9:19 am on Thu, May 16, 2013.

    Larry Hamilton Posts: 50

    Romney lost by 5 million votes and Karl made a lot of money. I would rather have a root canal instead of having lunch in Woodbridge with this clown.

  • Joanne Bobin posted at 8:10 am on Thu, May 16, 2013.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4308

    Rove's credibility was shot to h ell last election cycle, but he still commands an audience of the faithful right wingers who are willing to pay a lot of money to listen to his nonsense.

    Gotta give him credit for making money while swindling the American public.

  • Will Rainwater posted at 3:39 pm on Wed, May 15, 2013.

    Will Rainwater Posts: 35

    God Bless Karl Rove!!! One of the greatest American Patriots of our time!!!! And God Bless Steve Ding!!! Another great American!!!!

  • Doug Chaney posted at 1:45 pm on Wed, May 15, 2013.

    advocate Posts: 499

    I don't pay any attention to the spin of the hucksters from either side of the aisle, but I do pay attention to the fine cuisine and service at the Woodbridge Crossing. Great job, Mr. Ding and staff for the best dining experience in Lodi or Woodbridge.

  • Willadine Welk posted at 10:50 am on Wed, May 15, 2013.

    partyinlodi Posts: 1

    He says the recovery from the recession caused by the Bush administration is too slow. And people are dumb enough to pay a lot of money to listen to him.

  • CATHERINE ERICKSON posted at 10:33 am on Wed, May 15, 2013.

    FRITZY9 Posts: 17

    Gee...he seems to just be babbling the same old gobbledygook! Never any new ideas. Mr. Rove is just pushing all the old Republican buzz words in his ridiculous address to this group of righties.....yep the president can't keep the American people safe.. that's right...he KILLED Bin Laden! Terrorism is everywhere...Boston would have happened on any President's watch. We now have 3% growth in the is country ...better than any other country facing the economic challenges around the globe! Yeh the austerity the GOP proposed would have worked! What a joke. England went the austerity route and has less than .05 % growth. Give me a break..it's the same old sad mantra...crawl back into your hole Rove! Go home....you are a has been who is way over your head in todays political environment. We don't need a rehash of your loser ideas for this nation. We need innovators and people who see the future...not the negative past! This is the guy who pawned Bush on us...the guy who lied to the American people about going to war in Iraq! Did he keep our men and women in the military safe? He sent them to their deaths on a lie! "Courage" in the title of his book...really?



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