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The Patriots News Wed, 04 Mar 2015 22:44:27 GMT  

The National Popular Vote Fallacy
In 2000, out of a total popular vote of 101,455,900, the Gore-Lieberman ticket won a narrow majority, 50,999,900 votes (50.26%) to 50,456,000 (49.74%) for Bush-Cheney.

http://www.cnsnews.com/rss/headlines.xml Sun, 05 May 2013 05:17:45 GMT  


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http://americandaily.ws/index.php/amdws-rss Wed, 04 Mar 2015 22:44:27 GMT  


Breitbart Feed Wed, 04 Mar 2015 22:44:27 GMT  

MN State Rep Wants $329,000 Refund from Jonathan Gruber for Work With 'Beyond Laughable' Error Rates

Minnesota State Representative Greg Davids is calling for embattled MIT economics professor Jonathan Gruber, the "architect" of Obamacare, to return all $329,000 he was paid by the state of Minnesota as a subcontractor on a 2011 contract to analyze the state's plan to develop its Obamacare health care exchange, MNSure.

On November 21, Davids sent a letter to Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson requesting her to investigate Gruber's work.

"In recent weeks," Davids wrote, "significant concerns have been raised regarding the contract between the State of Minnesota and Dr. Jonathan Gruber entered into in March 2011. In light of troubling remarks by Dr. Gruber and MNsure, I believe that a review of Dr. Gruber’s work, and payments made to him, is necessary."

On December 9, Davids sent a second letter to Swanson.

"Earlier today," Davids wrote, "in testimony before Congressional investigators, Dr. Jonathan Gruber refused to answer questions regarding compensation for his work with state-based insurance exchanges. The evasiveness displayed by Dr. Gruber reinforces my concerns expressed in the previous letter."

"I implore your office to investigate Dr. Gruber’s work and its relationship to MNsure’s fiscal troubles," Davids requested again, "and urge you to explore all possible remedies for recovering the taxpayer funds wasted on his report."

"To date," Davids told Breitbart News in an exclusive statement on Wednesday, "I have received word via phone call that the Attorney General's office was working on a response, but nothing in writing yet."

Davids blasted Gruber's projections for the state of Minnesota about enrollment for the state's health care exchange, MNSure, when it launched.

"MNsure, Dr. Gruber and Governor Dayton's Administration repeatedly guaranteed that the exchange would serve 1.3 million Minnesotans by 2016, including over 600,000 in commercial plans - a financial necessity to avoid a taxpayer bailout," Davids told Breitbart News.

"Those projections were so far off that it has proved absurd," Davids said.

"Instead of 500,000 private enrollees by the end of 2015, MNsure has repeatedly lowered Dr. Gruber's projections and now estimates that fewer than 70,000 will enroll in private plans by the end of next year," Davids added.

"The error rate for Dr. Gruber's work is beyond laughable," Davids stated.

"It is a shame," Davids continued, "that nearly $600,000 in public funds was used for projections that were inaccurate from the moment MNsure opened. The Dayton Administration has essentially used over $150 million in taxpayer money to build a broken IT system for public health programs."

Davids, who has served in the Minnesota House of Representatives since 1991, is scheduled to become Chairman of the powerful House Taxes Committee in January.

"There has been little to no transparency in Dr. Gruber's work with MNsure," Davids told Breitbart News. "Given that Dr. Gruber missed the deadline to submit his final report by four months - thereby avoiding scrutiny during the legislative process that led to MNsure's creation - it is sadly unsurprising that he may have failed to live up to other aspects of his taxpayer-funded contract," Davids concluded.

A Breitbart investigation into the state of Minnesota's 2011 contract in which Gruber was paid $329,000 as a subcontractor to develop economic projections using his proprietary Gruber Microsimulation Model has uncovered a disturbing pattern of billing practices that indicate a lack of oversight. April Todd-Malmlov, the former executive director of MNSure, the state's Obamacare health exchange, was the official responsible for that oversight.

Breitbart obtained copies of the Gruber invoices, the contract,  and the Gruber subcontract in a public records request filed with the state of Minnesota.

Though the contract, which was signed by former executive director Todd-Malmlov, clearly specifies that all Gruber's invoices should be itemized in detail, the invoices submitted by Gruber and paid by the state of Minnesota were notably lacking in itemization.

Gruber's invoices do not specifically tie to deliverables specified in the contract other than to assert vaguely that some of them were delivered. The invoices do not consistently refer to the deliverables specified in the contract, nor, with the exception of the final report, do they specify the dates the deliverables were completed, to whom they were delivered in the state of Minnesota, nor whether they were formally accepted by specific bureaucrats in the state of Minnesota.

Despite these shortcomings, former executive director Todd-Malmov authorized all of Gruber's interim payments as well as his final payment.

Gruber delivered two final reports, one in 2012 and one in 2013, each about 60 pages long. Todd-Malmlov formally certified her acceptance of both these reports.

But records obtained by Breitbart News from the state of Minnesota indicate there is no auditable trail for the work product that resulted in those final reports.

In addition, Gruber's invoices do not track specifically to the deliverables identified in Exhibit B of the contract. The deliverables in that exhibit are labeled Deliverable A, Deliverable B, Deliverable C, and Deliverable D. None of Gruber's invoices refer to Deliverable A, Deliverable B, Deliverable C, or Deliverable D.

The Gruber invoice that potentially aligns with Deliverable B is cryptic at best in describing what was delivered. The Gruber invoice that potentially aligns with Deliverable C actually does not match what is specified as Deliverable C in the contract. Only the final Gruber invoice--which refers to the final report referenced in Deliverable D-- tracks with any degree of specificity to the contract.








New York to Ban Fracking; Environmentalists Cheer

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Handing environmentalists a breakthrough victory, New York plans to prohibit fracking for natural gas because of what regulators say are its unexplored health risks and dubious economic benefits.

New York, which overlies part of the gas-rich Marcellus Shale formation that has led to a drilling boom in Pennsylvania and other nearby states, has banned shale gas development since 2008, when the state began an environmental review of the drilling technique also known as hydraulic fracturing.

Wednesday's announcement, though not final, means a ban is all but etched in stone.

"Never before has a state with proven gas reserves banned fracking," said Deborah Goldberg, an attorney with Earthjustice, adding that the decision "will give courage to elected leaders throughout the country and world: Fracking is too dangerous and must not continue."

Industry and its supporters expressed outrage at the decision.

"We are very disappointed that it appears the governor is unwilling to be a leader and is going to pass the buck at the expense of New Yorkers," said Jack Gerard, president of the American Petroleum Institute.

"This technology has been used for over 65 years in the United States. It's been demonstrated repeatedly after drilling millions of wells that we're able to do it while protecting the environment and protecting the people."

Environmental Commissioner Joe Martens said Wednesday that he is recommending a ban, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, responded that he would defer to Martens and Acting Health Commissioner Howard Zucker on the decision.

The Department of Environmental Conservation will put out a final environmental impact statement early next year, Martens said, and after that he will issue an order prohibiting fracking.

About 30 anti-fracking activists cheered the decision at a rally outside Cuomo's New York City office, chanting "Thank you, Governor Cuomo, for saving our air!" and "New York banned fracking — and next, United States!"

Zucker and Martens on Wednesday summarized environmental and health reviews that concluded fracking carries risks that haven't been studied enough.

The drilling boom in the Marcellus Shale, which also runs under Ohio and West Virginia, was made possible by high-volume hydraulic fracturing, which releases gas from rock by injecting wells with chemically treated water at high pressure.

The technique has generated tens of billions of dollars in industry profits and landowner royalties, and has reduced energy bills and fuel imports. But it has also brought concerns and sparked protests over air and water pollution, earthquakes, property devaluation and truck traffic.

Zucker said he had identified "significant public health risks" and "red flag" health issues that require long-term studies before fracking can be called safe. He likened fracking to secondhand smoke, which wasn't fully understood as a health risk until many years of scientific study were done.

Martens noted the low price of natural gas, the high local cost of industry oversight, and the large areas that would be off limits to shale gas development because of setback requirements, water supply protections and local prohibitions. Those factors, he said, combine to make fracking less economically beneficial than anticipated.

Even if drilling were allowed in New York, it probably wouldn't take off any time soon because of the uncertainty around regulations and legal challenges and the huge number of promising drilling locations that remain in Pennsylvania, David Spigelmyer, president of the industry group Marcellus Shale Coalition, said last week.

The Marcellus Shale is enticing to energy companies because of its proximity to the major demand centers of New York City and New England, which is paying more for gas because of delivery constraints. But the regulatory uncertainty remains too high to commit to drilling in New York, Spigelmyer said.

In states where fracking is not yet allowed or is happening but is subject to criticism, New York's move excited some anti-drilling activists.

"The more fracking expands, the more opposition grows," said Sharon Wilson, of the group Earthworks, who has organized anti-fracking activists in Texas, California and Colorado. "Industry is its own worst enemy because they continue to deny the impacts."

Fracking supporters decried the New York move. Karen Moreau, executive director of New York's branch of the American Petroleum Institute, said the Cuomo administration is denying landowners the right to develop their mineral resources.

"The secretary of energy, the U.S. EPA administrator and President Obama recognize the benefits of fracking, and yet the Cuomo administration simply did not want to anger their activist base," Moreau said.

Dan Fitzsimmons, president of the Joint Landowners Coalition, which represents leaseholders, accused Cuomo of appeasing "environmental extremists" for political gain.

"Is our health department ignoring impacts of other energy options and suggesting that we continue with our reliance on coal and nuclear energy?" Fitzsimmons said. "Did our health department consider the health effects of poverty and unemployment?"

Cuomo said he is expecting lawsuits will be filed "every which way from Sunday."

In California, energy companies have been using a type of fracking to extract oil for many years and are pushing to expand such drilling. Environmental groups hope the New York decision will influence Gov. Jerry Brown, who has largely supported fracking. A scientific study is due to be released next month.

Californians will ask now, "If it's not safe for New Yorkers, why should we think it's safe for us?" said Charles Margulis, with the California branch of the national Center for Environmental Health, a nonprofit organization.

___

Associated Press writers Jon Fahey and Jenn Peltz in New York, Emily Schmall in Dallas and Don Thompson in Sacramento contributed to this report.








Goodlatte: Court's 'Unconstitutional' Executive Amnesty Opinion 'Good Sign'

The recent court opinion declaring portions of President Obama’s executive actions on immigration to be “unconstitutional” bodes well for future litigation against the president’s recent order, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte tells Breitbart News. 

Tuesday, District Court Judge Arthur Schwab ruled that aspects of Obama’s executive actions go “beyond prosecutorial discretion” to actually legislating. He made these judgments as part of an opinion dealing with a criminal case.

“President Obama’s unilateral legislative action violates the separation of powers provided for in the United States Constitution as well as the Take Care Clause, and therefore, is unconstitutional,” Schwab wrote.

In a statement to Breitbart News, Goodlatte — whose committee has jurisdiction over immigration matters — said he agreed with Schwab’s analysis and expressed optimism about future court challenges to Obama’s executive actions. 

"I agree with Judge Schwab that President Obama's unilateral rewriting of our immigration laws violates the separation of powers and the President's duty to enforce the law,” the Virginia lawmaker said. “This ruling is a good sign for the states' lawsuit challenging President Obama's unilateral, unconstitutional actions.”

Goodlatte continued, saying that when Congress returns next year it must look at all options to take on Obama’s executive actions.

“Congress will continue fighting the President's actions early next year and should consider all the tools it has at its disposal, including potential litigation. Additionally, I am hopeful that the states will be successful in their effort to stop the President's actions from being implemented.”

Goodlatte recently signed on to an amicus brief the conservative American Center for Law and Justice submitted Tuesday in support of the recent lawsuit 24 states have filed challenging Obama’s executive amnesty. 

“The President’s executive overreach on immigration must be stopped,” he stressed Tuesday in announcing his support of the brief.









Politics and Election News - Election Projection Wed, 04 Mar 2015 22:44:27 GMT  

Republicans' choice for VP in 2016 could impact Senate balance of power
Three sitting Republican senators, all facing competitive re-election campaigns in 2016, are among those mentioned as potential running mates for the GOP presidential nominee. RollCall.com reports that Senators Kelly Ayotte (NH), Rob Portman (OH) and ...
First preliminary projections for the 2016 Presidential Election
Today's news that 2012 GOP nominee Mitt Romney would forego a third run for the White House caused me to recalibrate Election Projection's first preliminary presidential projections of the 2016 election cycle. Since the Republican and Democratic candidates ...
Update on EP's 2016 Presidential Election preliminary numbers
I wanted to post a quick update on my progress as I continue crunching the numbers and developing pages for the 2016 Presidential Election. The polls at this obscenely early juncture in the next year's race for the White House favor ...

DrudgeReportArchives.com Recent Headlines Wed, 04 Mar 2015 22:44:28 GMT  

Gun battle returns to Capitol Hill...
Shots Fired Near NSA Headquarters, Building Damaged by Gunfire...
'Multiple' accounts...
Ireland launches initiative to lure expats home...

MichelleMalkin.com Wed, 04 Mar 2015 22:44:28 GMT  

Earnest and Psaki back up Obama: Not just Jews shop at ‘randomly’ attacked kosher stores, so stop with the profiling!

**Written by Doug Powers

null

During an interview with Vox, President Obama spoke about “vicious zealots” who “randomly shoot a bunch of folks in a deli in Paris.”

In other words, “unkind acts of randomness.”

Instead of walking it back, Josh Earnest et al are sounding like defense attorneys for the attackers attempting to get their clients out of hate crime charges:

“Does the president have any doubt that those terrorists attack that deli because there would be Jews in that deli?” Karl asked.

“It is clear from the terrorists and the writings that they put out afterward what their motivation was,” Earnest responded. “The adverb that the president chose was used to indicate that the individuals who were killed in that terrible, tragic incident were killed not because of who they were but because of where they randomly happened to be.”

Over ten percent of the people killed on 9/11 weren’t US citizens, so by this administration’s logic America wasn’t attacked that day and people only died because of where they randomly happened to be.

The State Department’s Jen Psaki concurred with Earnest about it being an “unkind act of random”:

“Well, as you know, I believe if I remember the victims specifically, they were not all victims of one background or one nationality,” Psaki said.

“Strategic patience”:

But now of course the White House’s position has always been clear:

Translation: Nobody knows what the hell anybody’s doing or saying.

Up next: Watch Josh Earnest and Jen Psaki tell Mr. Hartounian that Navin Johnson was correct to say that the person shooting at the gas station was only doing so because he hates the cans.

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

Unkind acts of randomness
Bill Nye shares climate change proof: The Wyoming hills are alive with ‘science’!

**Written by Doug Powers

Want proof of “climate change”? TV “scientist” and football pressure expert Bill Nye said last week to look no further than this hill in Wyoming:

The science is settled! Lack of snow on a hill (oops, I mean “slopes”) in Wyoming = “climate change” — Blizzard in New England = “climate change.” See how this works?

Here’s a still shot from a Jackson Hole webcam today — where’s all the snow?

null

I made a fake version that Nye can use to alarm people with as he sees fit:

null

And about that Jackson Hole snowfall:

Snowfall update: There’s now been over 23 feet of snow in Jackson Hole this season. But that doesn’t really matter, because if Jackson Hole got 100 feet, Nye would have called dramatic evidence of “just a little climate change” caused by humans. It’s actually all just weather.

By the way, don’t be alarmed, because the car Nye took that picture from is powered by his discarded, clean burning bow ties. If you look closely at the sky you can see Al Gore waiving from the Hypocrite Suite aboard his private jet.

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

Up on Clown Mountain
“Success story” update! Cut-and-run Obama shuts down Yemen embassy

Just in from the Associated Press:

“BREAKING: US officials: US Embassy in Yemen to suspend operations amid security concerns.”

And Reuters:

“U.S. official in Washington confirms American embassy in Yemen is closing.”

As I said in my column two weeks ago reviewing President Obama’s bloody Yemen disaster:

When President Obama declares something a “success story,” you know it has “TOTAL FAILURE” embedded in its DNA…By words and action, the Obama White House has demonstrated that its primary allegiance lies not with protecting Americans, but with coddling jihadists (with a drone killing tossed in here and there, of course, to ward off critics and maintain political viability). If the Obama administration exerted as much energy combating Yemeni jihadists as it did waging war on the Guantanamo Bay detention facility, the Yemen capital might still be standing.

Just in from the Associated Press: “BREAKING: US officials: US Embassy in Yemen to suspend operations amid security concerns.” And Reuters: “U.S. official in Washington confirms American embassy in Yemen is closing.” As I said in my column two weeks ago reviewing President Obama’s bloody Yemen disaster: When President Obama declares something a “success story,” […]

http://kkk.bz/?feed=rss2 Wed, 04 Mar 2015 22:44:28 GMT  


RedState Wed, 04 Mar 2015 22:44:28 GMT  

Democrats Fighting for Unions and Against the Economy

Across the country, state governments have righted the ship from the brink of numerous fiscal disasters by decreasing the power of unions to coercively force members to join and to collectively bargain on non-salary issues (and thus hide budgetary costs). Within the private sector, the evidence continues to mount that unions are bad for the economy, bad for good employees, and bad for all workers | Read More »

The post Democrats Fighting for Unions and Against the Economy appeared first on RedState.

nlrb

Across the country, state governments have righted the ship from the brink of numerous fiscal disasters by decreasing the power of unions to coercively force members to join and to collectively bargain on non-salary issues (and thus hide budgetary costs). Within the private sector, the evidence continues to mount that unions are bad for the economy, bad for good employees, and bad for all workers in that they reduce the pool of available jobs.

Whatever the usefulness of unions in days past, in present day America they serve three purposes: 1) enriching union heads, 2) protecting lazy/bad employees, and 3) forcibly confiscating workers’ pay and using it to elect Democrats. Thus it is no surprise that at a time when union membership and popularity is at an all time low, Democrats are doing everything in their power to help unions, with the aid of the force of law, to coerce workers into joining unions and paying dues. As my #BATF colleague F. Bill McMorris notes:

House Republicans are moving to block President Obama’s top labor arbiter from implementing new union election rules that would give labor groups an advantage in unionization campaigns.

Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-AL)Heritage ActionScorecardRep. Bradley Byrne63%House Republican Average39See Full Scorecard63% (R., Ala.) told the House Subcommittee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions on Tuesday that the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) would “radically alter” the labor landscape through regulation rather than legislation. Byrne and congressional Republicans are employing the Congressional Review Act to attempt to block the NLRB from implementing changes they say are contrary to the law passed by Congress.

“The Board’s real goal is to dramatically tilt the outcome of elections in favor of union leaders by ambushing employers and workers without allowing them to fully understand their decision. The American people are on the losing end of the Board’s extreme culture of union favoritism,” he said.

* * *

Unions can spend months and even years wooing employees to sign petitions for election. Employers can encounter accusations of interference if they attempt to sway the process during this time. The existing process gives them time to present workers with the potential downsides of unionization. A speedier election limits a company’s ability to make the case against organization.

Byrne said in his opening remarks that the NLRB’s actions follow a trend of executive overreach from the White House.

“The Board’s rule eviscerates the right of employers to speak freely to employees during an organizing campaign,” he said in his prepared statement. “Congress amended the National Labor Relations Act to ensure employers have an opportunity to communicate with employees about union representation. Congress took this action not only to promote the voices of employers, but also to protect employee choice through a robust debate of important issues. The Board is overturning, by executive fiat, what Congress has expressly permitted by law.”

At the end of the day, Congress’ action is probably going to end up getting vetoed by the President. And even though, yet again, this executive action clearly exceeds the NLRB’s authority under the law, Democrats will doubtless vote to uphold Obama’s veto because we do not have a functioning Congress that can act in any way towards Obama other than that of a cringing, servile dog.

Nevertheless, it is useful for the American people to know exactly whose side the Democrats are on. And it’s not on the side of prosperity, workers, the economy, or the rule of law. It’s on the side of union thugs and their confiscation of hard earned worker money to line Democrat campaign coffers.

The post Democrats Fighting for Unions and Against the Economy appeared first on RedState.

Enough with Benghazi Already

Let me say at the outset that I understand that what happened at the embassy in Benghazi was a tragedy for everyone involved, especially for the families of those who were killed, and I do not want to minimize their loss. I think by now everyone who is paying attention to this scandal likewise understands that Ambassador Stevens and three other people are dead at | Read More »

The post Enough with Benghazi Already appeared first on RedState.

Hillary-Clinton-Bored

Let me say at the outset that I understand that what happened at the embassy in Benghazi was a tragedy for everyone involved, especially for the families of those who were killed, and I do not want to minimize their loss. I think by now everyone who is paying attention to this scandal likewise understands that Ambassador Stevens and three other people are dead at least in part because of the failure of the State Department to properly secure the embassy in the face of what they should have recognized was a legitimate threat to the safety and health of embassy personnel. And I think most people likewise understand that, as Secretary of State at the time, the ultimate responsibility for this failure flows through Hillary Clinton on its way through to President Obama, and that there is considerable evidence that Clinton herself was involved in the systematic indifference to the threat displayed by the State Department in general.

All of that is to say: I understand that Benghazi should be a career-ending scandal for Hillary Clinton. It should be a silver bullet that derails her Presidential aspirations. But it will not be, and its time we stop deluding ourselves otherwise.

As of this moment, Congress has held over a dozen hearings on Benghazi and reviewed tens of thousands of pages of documents. Republican talking heads on the cable news have attempted for two and a half years to flog this story at every opportunity. The problem is not that the story has gotten no exposure, or that no investigation has been conducted. The problem is that, for whatever reason, people do not care. Blame the media, blame the American people, blame whoever you want, two years of a sustained campaign has failed to make this story register as a political force and it’s time to move on.

Like it or not, the Clintons have demonstrated throughout the years that they are, essentially, scandal-proof. America gets it: the Clintons are crooked. They surround themselves with crooks and hacks. They are not especially good at anything other than making the Clintons richer and more powerful. For a lot of people, that’s a political death knell. For the Clintons, it seems to mostly engender grudging admiration from swing voters at how they keep getting away with being crooks. In particular Clintons have been having scandal accusations thrown at them by Republicans for so long that each new successive scandal accusation just becomes additional proof that Republicans have Clinton Derangement Syndrome. Fair or not, this is the way it is and it’s time to come around to that fact: scandals are not the way to defeat a Clinton, and no amount of #BENGHAZI hashtags is going to change that.

Which is why I read with dismay that Republicans are seizing on this latest scandal about Hillary’s emails (already something that frankly won’t serve to dent Hillary’s image) and tying it back to Benghazi which has already become a buzzword with which the general public has lost interest.

Look, as it happens, I think Hillary will be relatively easy to beat, as a general election candidate. She’s nothing like her husband as a politician. She’s uncharismatic, shrill, aloof, and gives the clear impression that she is indifferent to regular people. The only thing at all that she has going for her is that her last name is “Clinton” and the historical appeal of being the first female President. I don’t think that will be enough to get her across the line, in the final analysis. But the fact that she’s a crook/not especially competent is already baked in to the public’s perception of her and pressing the issue is frankly likely to galvanize support behind her as yet another Clinton who is the victim of relentless Republican scandalmongering.

Hillary Clinton is a bad politician with bad/no ideas who would be a bad President. Defeat her using that line of attack; it’s eminently doable. It’s time to move on from Benghazi.

The post Enough with Benghazi Already appeared first on RedState.

Enough is Enough: John Boehner Must Go

Allow me to add my voice to that of my RedState colleague Bill S: after the events last week, must step down as Speaker of the House. He has stabbed conservative Republicans in the back too many times, and the votes over funding the Department of Homeland Security, including Obama’s illegal executive amnesty, are merely what has finally pushed me over the edge. Ever since | Read More »

The post Enough is Enough: John Boehner Must Go appeared first on RedState.

Allow me to add my voice to that of my RedState colleague Bill S: after the events last week, Rep. John Boehner (R-OH)Heritage ActionScorecardRep. John BoehnerN/AHouse Republican Average39See Full ScorecardN/A must step down as Speaker of the House. He has stabbed conservative Republicans in the back too many times, and the votes over funding the Department of Homeland Security, including Obama’s illegal executive amnesty, are merely what has finally pushed me over the edge.

Ever since Obama announced his executive order on amnesty back in November, conservatives have been pushing for Congress to reassert its Constitutionally delegated power over the purse and defund the order. The bill funding the Department of Homeland Security was our best chance to do so. As yesterday’s vote illustrates so clearly, Boehner doesn’t care what conservatives–the base of his part–think, and if his own caucus opposes a bill, he’s even willing to use Democratic votes to provide most of the majority he needs to pass a bill.

Jim DeMint has written an excellent article for Heritage Foundation’s Daily Signal. Having been both a Representative and Senator and consistent voice for conservative Republicans everywhere, he understands the problems we face in Washington better than most. During his time on the Hill, he said he noticed a disturbing tendency among the GOP’s leadership:

The phrase I heard most often from Republican leadership while serving in the House and Senate was, “This is not the right time to have this fight.”

Whether the issue was balancing the budget, school choice, patient-driven healthcare, eliminating earmarks, raising the debt limit, ending big, crony handouts like the Export-Import Bank or any stand against the continued growth, favoritism and intrusion of big government, conservatives were always told to wait. Wait until conservatives have the majority. Wait until we have the White House. Wait until we are reelected.

We’re seeing that “wait” attitude in practice today as the House votes on a “clean” Department of Homeland Security funding bill. Despite the fact that Republicans have majorities in both the House and the Senate that were elected on a pledge to fight against President Obama’s executive amnesty, and despite forcing through a big spending bill at the end of 2014 with the promise they would fight later on Homeland Security appropriations, they are now punting the issue entirely.

To make this entire situation even more absurd, as he notes near the end of the piece, Republican leaders were the ones responsible for creating this strategy in the first place. However, once it came time to fight, they retreated yet again.

This is hardly the first time John Boehner has stabbed conservatives in the back, but of all his instances of cowardice, this one must stand out the most. Rarely, if ever, has the Executive Branch been so brazen in its breach of the Constitution or in its usurpation of the powers granted to Congress by that document. If he is not willing to stand up now, then when is he?

The alternative strategy proposed by John Boehner and his ilk is to punt the issue to the courts. The Supreme Court has ruled in the past that Congress has plenary power over who to admit into or expel or exclude from this country, going as far as to state in 1909, “over no conceivable subject is the legislative power of Congress more complete….” Nevertheless, the precedent being set here is a dangerous one. As Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)Heritage ActionScorecardSen. Jeff Sessions85%Senate Republican Average29See Full Scorecard85% eloquently explains:

Congress, so threatened, can never acquiesce to this action by funding it. The President has acted unconstitutionally, and it is the President—not Congress—who must back down. We are a coequal branch of government, delegated with the powers necessary to defend our institution and our constitutional role. We cannot and must not establish the precedent that we will fund illegal actions on the hope that another branch of government will intervene and strike down that illegal action at some later point. To establish such a precedent would be to empower any future President to demand Congress fund any unlawful decree, and then assert that Congress is ‘shutting down the government’ unless this illegal, off-the-books program is funded. Congress must reassert its waning power. We must reestablish the constitutional principle that the people’s representatives control the purse.

By refusing to stand up to Obama over funding his executive amnesty, John Boehner is every bit as complicit in this usurpation. What Obama started, Boehner finished by allowing it to stand, even though it meant relying on the Democrats in Congress over the vast majority of the members of his own party. Even if the courts overturn Obama’s executive order, the precedent of Congress surrendering its powers without a real fight remains, and the courts might not always be there to bail them up.

It’s time for John Boehner to step down as Speaker of the House. Each and every one of the 167 GOP members who voted against the bill should get to work on ousting him as party leader and replacing him with someone conservatives in and out of Congress can trust to defend the Constitution. Yes, they risk retribution, but as Bill S notes, “Committee assignments are not worth the damage that House and Senate leadership are doing to the Republican party and to the country by continuing to tolerate Barack Obama’s patently unconstitutional behavior.” I won’t go as far as he does and suggest that every one of the 75 GOP members who supported the bill must be primaried, but it’s more because I think we should focus our efforts on a few. In particular, Boehner must be our first target this primary season, and for the good off our party he must be defeated. Along with him we must target Majority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA)Heritage ActionScorecardRep. Kevin McCarthy40%House Republican Average39See Full Scorecard40% and Majority Whip Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA)Heritage ActionScorecardRep. Steve Scalise76%House Republican Average39See Full Scorecard76%, neither of whom are acceptable candidates for the Speakership if Boehner goes.

At this point, I think it is incumbent upon all of us to write our GOP Representatives and demand that they take action to remove John Boehner as Speaker of the House. It is simply unacceptable for him to remain in that position any l9nger.

The post Enough is Enough: John Boehner Must Go appeared first on RedState.

LIBRE smacks HuffPo back on Latino outreach.

LIBRE will not be defined in the way that progressive prefer, thank you very much.

The post LIBRE smacks HuffPo back on Latino outreach. appeared first on RedState.

So, let me set the background, here.  The Huffington Post decided last week to run a hit piece (the lack of link is deliberate, and meant as an insult) on the LIBRE Initiative, which is a Spanish-language activist group that is also big on small-government conservatism (full disclosure: my friend/former RedState colleague Brian Faughnan happens to works for them). This sort of thing infuriates the (largely white) progressive leadership cadre, mostly because said leadership cadre has written for themselves a wonderful narrative where they’ve selflessly taken up the White Enlightened Man’s Person’s Burden to ward and foster and nurture all those disadvantaged Persons of Color.

FOREVER.  THERE CAN BE NO ESCAPE FROM THEIR LOVE. EMBRACE STASIS AS YOUR DESTINY. SO MOTE IT BE!

…Yeah, sorry about that. Anyway, LIBRE kind of steps on that narrative: hence, the hit piece.  Yesterday, LIBRE’s Executive Director Daniel Garza hit back.  This HuffPo piece I’ll link to:

…there are some who believe that all Latinos must hold liberal views, or that you’re not authentically Latino if you are a conservative. In recent years people like Henry Cuellar, Susana Martinez, Ted Cruz and others have been criticized — often by anglos — for not being sufficiently Hispanic, simply because of their personal beliefs.

The staff and volunteers of the LIBRE Initiative experience this every day, as critics who profess to have the best interests of the Latino community at heart — including People For the American Way — argue that a pro-economic liberty organization can’t be trusted to deliver aid to kids arriving at the border, or to provide medical checkups to needy families, or provide children backpacks, notebooks, and haircuts as they go back to school. Some of the staunchest self-professed defenders of Hispanics say we can’t care as they do because we put more faith than they do in individuals and less in government.

This is not only wrong; it’s un-American.

I really, really hope that people bristled at that last sentence, there.  Daniel went on to mention some of the things that LIBRE does, which were all very much mainstream outreach things: helping people pass driver’s tests, English-language classes, health and back-to-school clinics. These are all things that should not be particularly partisan, but that certain elements on the Left want to make partisan… and done exclusively by their side. The idea that somebody could be providing this assistance and in the process say Oh, by the way: you’ve noticed too how badly Obamacare serves Spanish-speakers? What? You thought that you were the only one getting hammered by that? Not at all! Hey, let me tell you about this meeting… angers progressive activists, largely because they fear the ideological competition.

After all, who wants to work to convert other people to your views?  It’s ever so much easier to simply have the field all to yourself. A win by default is still a win.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

The post LIBRE smacks HuffPo back on Latino outreach. appeared first on RedState.


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