NO SNOW IN BETHLEHEM?
Tags: Jerusalem, William J. Murray To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
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Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru] - email@example.com (Pub. Since July, 2006) Home Page
Saturday, December 22, 2007
NO SNOW IN BETHLEHEM?
William J. Murray, Chairman Religious Freedom Coalition: The Archbishop of Canterbury, who is the leader of the Anglican Church, said that Jesus was probably not born in a manger, that there were no animals present and there was "probably" no snow as most Nativity Scenes depict. HMMM ... The photograph at left is of my daughter Katie standing in front of the entrance to the Old City in Jerusalem. As you can see the ground is covered with snow. The day the photo was taken we were to have been in Bethlehem but could not get there because of the snow. If the good Bishop doesn't know that it snows in Bethlehem what does he know about the Nativity Scene? His comments can be found here.
Tags: Jerusalem, William J. Murray To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
100,000 Strong For Earmark Reform
ARRA News Service supports earmark reform. If you are for
Earmark Reform sign the 100,000 Strong For Earmark Reform.
Tags: earmark reform, Jim DeMint To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Friday, December 21, 2007
WSJ: No Truck for Huck
The Wall Street Journal, OpinionJournal.com's James Taranto says he's troubled by Mike Huckabee's health care, foreign-policy inexperience and sectarian religious appeal. Video follows:
Tags: Election 2008, James Taranto, Mike Huckabee, presidential candidate, Wall Street Journal To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Mitt Romney's Big Prevarication - Oops
Tags: Election 2008, George Romney, Martin Luther King Jr, Mitt Romney, presidential candidate, prevarication To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Hug A Lobster on the Pork Vacation Tour
• For a paper on how President Bush could slash earmarks.
• To read and search Congress' omnibus spending bill.
• To find out what else is sure to outrage taxpayers, visit Omnibusting blog.
• For other research on the federal budget.
Tags: Congressional Pork, earmarks, Heritage Foundation, omnibus bill To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
2,600 Pages Of Clinton Records Withheld
by Josh Gerstein, The New York Sun: The National Archives is withholding from the public about 2,600 pages of records at President Clinton's direction, despite a public assurance by one of his top aides last month that Mr. Clinton "has not blocked the release of a single document." . . . An official who oversees the presidential libraries operated by the federal government, Susan Fawcett, said in a recent interview that the records were withheld in accordance with a letter Mr. Clinton wrote in 1994 exercising his right to hold back certain types of files and another letter in 2002 about narrowing the scope of his earlier instructions. Asked by National Journal whether Mr. Clinton had "total control" over the closure of records under the confidential-advice provisions of the law, Ms. Fawcett said he did.
At a presidential debate in October, Mrs. Clinton was questioned about language in the 2002 letter that discussed the possibility of withholding some records about the former first lady. Mr. Clinton later called the questions "breathtakingly misleading" and complained bitterly that his wife had been sandbagged. . . . Ms. Cooper said the 2,600 pages of advice are part of about 24,000 pages of closed Clinton White House records. The bulk of the closures likely involve records found in domestic policy and health care files that Mr. Clinton authorized for processing before the library began accepting record requests from the public in 2006. . . . [Read More]
Tags: Clinton Library, Arkansas, freedom of information, Hillary Clinton To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Are Earmarks Returned for Bribes? You Decide!
"A Reading Program's Powerful Patron" by James V. Grimaldi, Washington Post: When Congress decided to appropriate $2 million in fall 2001 to help D.C. kindergartners and first-graders learn to read, city school officials were told that the money could be spent only on the Voyager Expanded Learning literacy program, a new product with virtually no track record. They had just picked a different reading curriculum, and "we didn't want to be guinea pigs," recalled Mary Gill, then the system's chief academic officer.
School leaders did not know that the $2 million was an earmark that had been guided into law by Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA) just after she had received more than $30,000 in campaign contributions at a fundraiser held by Voyager's founder and chairman.
Landrieu's earmark illustrates the unusual role that Congress has played in shaping the District's troubled school system. No other school budget is subject to approval by Capitol Hill. . . . Landrieu, as the ranking Democrat and chairwoman of the Senate's D.C. appropriations subcommittee until early this year, was a pivotal figure in school spending and policy issues. With the Voyager earmark, she intruded on a curriculum decision normally made by teachers, principals, administrators and educational advisers. "It is unclear to me why Congress thinks they're qualified to do that," said Michael Casserly, executive director of the Council of the Great City Schools . . . .
Landrieu received about $80,000 from Voyager employees and lobbyists . . . . "It is not uncommon for Members of Congress to receive contributions from individuals who support their policy goals," she said in the statement to The Post, echoing a similar response she gave Education Week last year for a story on Voyager's political connections. Voyager employed lobbyists and made political contacts to obtain at least 14 earmarks over five years, worth more than $8 million . . . . Some went to other parts of the country, but most -- $5.23 million -- went to D.C. schools. . . . [Read More]
Tags: bribes, campaign funds, DC, earmarks, graft, lobbyist, Mary Landrieu, school To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
GENERAL DAVID PETRAEUS - MY PERSON OF THE YEAR
Hat tip to Okie Campaign for the following - hope you agree:
Let's have an award for someone who has actually made the world a better place. Since January of this year General Petraeus has led the greatest tango whacking mission in history. This has made it possible for Iraqis to take back their lives and start working on a civil society. The incredible change in the security situation was made possible by his strategy of Counter-Insurgency, implemented by our peerless military, and finally the long-awaited Awakening that started in Anbar. . . .
I give you the Person of the Year for those of us who prefer action against evil to bloviation against common sense.
HOO-AH GENERAL PETRAEUS ! . . . [Read More]
Tags: General David Petraeus, Iraq War, troop surge To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Poll: More People trust Republicans than Democrats on Terrorism, Illegal Immigration & Moral Values
by Rachel Alexander, GOPUSA: In a recent USA Today/Gallup poll, more people said they trust Republicans over Democrats on the issues of terrorism (by 10%), illegal immigration (by 7%), and moral values (by 4%). This sends a clear message to Republicans running for office in 2008 – they need to emphasize and run on those issues. . . . The big elephant in the closet is terrorism; the Democrats’ timid approach toward terrorism takes a huge gamble that there will not be another successful terrorist attack on the U.S. before the next election. If there is an attack, the Republicans’ tough approach to terrorism will have been clearly proven to be correct, and they’ll sweep the elections. . . . [Read More]
Tags: Democrats, Gallup Poll, GOPUSA, illegal immigration, moral values, poll, Republican, terrorism To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
John McCain: The Moment I Came to Love My Enemy
John McCain was a Navy pilot during the Vietnam War. In October 1967, his plane was shot down and McCain was captured. McCain spent 5 1/2 years as a POW at Hua Lo prison where he was struck almost daily by a sadistic guard and sometimes subjected to torture. In "Character Is Destiny," he recalls an encounter with a prison guard one Christmas morning.
John McCain reflects: There was one other occasion during my imprisonment that moved me greatly as evidence of God's transcending love. During the time I was held in solitary, I was caught, not for the first time, communicating with my dear friend in the cell next to mine. For my transgression, I was kept overnight in a punishment cell tied very tightly in ropes...
Tags: Christian Values, Christianity, Election 2008, John McCain To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Duncan Hunter Speaks About Fence on Glenn Beck
Here is what happened to the fence!
Rep. Duncan Hunter explains what happened to the fence in the Omnibus bill.
After viewing video, See also: The Incredible Disappearing Border Fence
Tags: border control, border fence, Duncan Hunter, Election 2008, Glenn Beck, omnibus bill, US Congress, Where's the Fence To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Tancredo Quits Race, Endorses Romney
Rep. Tom Tancredo ended his campaign and endorsed Gov. Mitt Romney. “Somebody’s going to win this race. It’s not going to me, so really what you’re looking for is that person you hope and pray will carry on.” Tancredo said that he had met with Mr. Romney this morning and was “convinced that he will do the things he said he will do.” And, he was confident that Mr. Romney would “go the distance.” Tancredo decided to drop out in part because of concern that he could split the vote for other candidates who have taken a hard line on immigration. "I fear remaining in this race, one which I cannot win, would contribute to the nomination of one of these candidates," he said.
Tancredo identified former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and Arizona Sen. John McCain as two Republican candidates whose records indicate they wouldn't be tough enough on immigration. He said Romney has a proven record of opposing illegal immigration while governor of Massachusetts, ending driver's licenses and in-state tuition for illegal immigrants. "On the other hand, you talk about what's happened in Arkansas, it's a totally different situation, and certainly John McCain has built a career in Congress being a supporter of illegal immigration and amnesty," Tancredo said.
In an open letter and video to supporters, Rep. Tancredo said:
Dear Friends, It is with my heart full of gratitude and a touch of sadness that I write today to tell you of my intention to end my campaign for the presidency. As a loyal friend and supporter it is important to me that you understand why I am doing this, even though you may disagree.
Tags: Election 2008, endorsement, Mitt Romney, Tom Tancredo To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Season's Earmarks by R.J. Matson [political cartoon]
by R.J. Matson
Hat tip to GOPUSA
for this relevant cartoon
addressing "earmarks" in
the Omnibus Bill:
Tags: Congressional Pork, earmarks, GOPUSA, omnibus bill, political cartoon To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Today in Washington D. C. - Dec 20, 2007
Yesterday, the House approved the Senate amendment to the omnibus, which funds the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan through the spring. Despite a great deal of rhetoric on “fiscal responsibility” and “Paygo,” the House approved 352-64 the Senate-passed version of the AMT patch which does not raise taxes. The House also approved an extension of the current SCHIP program until the end of March 2009.
Yesterday, the Senate confirmed Julie L. Myers as director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, two years after President Bush appointed her to the position amid questions about her qualifications to lead the government's second-largest law enforcement agency. Myers was among more than 30 people whose appointments were approved by a voice vote of the Senate as it concluded its session.
The Democrats’ frustration is apparent in the news today. The Washington Post’s headline reads: “Key Setbacks Dim Luster of Democrats’ Year.” The AP describes this week as “a bitter finish for majority Democrats.” CNN dubs 2007 “a year of frustration for Democrats.” The Los Angeles Times described last night’s House AMT vote as Democrats “bowing to Republican demands” and “a significant defeat for congressional Democrats.” All these setbacks make it unsurprising, per yesterday’s Roll Call, that Democrats are discussing using the reconciliation process to pass some of their agenda next year. Reconciliation is supposed to be used to reduce the deficit and prevents filibusters in the Senate but the Roll Call suggests Democrats might try to use it to advance their policy preferences.
The Senate is in recess until it reconvenes for a pro forma session either Friday or Sunday. Harry Reid has again decided to hold the Senate open in a series of pro forma sessions during the Christmas break in order to prevent President Bush from making any recess appointments especially to the Federal Election Commission. The House of Representatives has adjourned and will reconvene on Jan 15th. Senate will reconvene in full session on Jan 21.
Tags: AMT, omnibus bill, SCHIP, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C. To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
CAGW Names Sen. Lincoln Porker of the Month
Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) is the nation’s largest nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in government. Porker of the Month is a dubious honor given to lawmakers, government officials, and political candidates who have shown a blatant disregard for the interests of taxpayers.
(CAGW) named Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) December 2007 Porker of the Month for thwarting three amendments to the farm bill that would have provided some modest reform. Instead, it was a lost opportunity to fix one of the most outdated government programs. An amendment offered by Sens. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) and Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), would have capped subsidy payments to farmers at $250,000. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) attempted to pass a measure that would have set the annual adjusted gross income (AGI) for receiving any benefits at $750,000 and Sen. Sherrod Brown’s (D-Ohio) amendment would have reformed the crop insurance program.
Sen. Lincoln, whose family received big farm subsidy payments worth $715,000 between 1995 and 2005, threatened to filibuster the bill. Because Senate Democratic leaders did not want to be blamed for further delay of the farm bill, they changed the rules to require 60 votes for passage of those three amendments . . . . [The amendments failed] After the vote . . . Sen. Lincoln said, “I’m pleased that enough of my colleagues heard my plea and realized that the payment limitation amendment would be devastating to the hardworking farm families across Arkansas and much of the South. Farm families in Arkansas should not have to sacrifice their way of life, and that’s what this proposal would have done.”
To claim that farm subsidies are needed to preserve the small family farmer is purely laughable. The money goes disproportionately to the wealthiest farmers, with little benefit to farmers most in need of help. Subsidies have proven to be very costly to both taxpayers and consumers and have undermined the rural economy. Currently, 60% of farms either receive no subsidies or less than $2,000 annually. In 2003, the top 10% of farm subsidy recipients collected 72 percent of total subsidies and the top 5% collected 55% of payments.
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) found that 2005 crop subsidy payments to Arkansas farms totaled $425 million; 26 farms received more than $250,000. The December 14 Washington Post said that includes “farms run by the Arkansas Department of Corrections, which produces cotton and other crops using convict labor. Federal subsidies to a state plantation worked by prisoners who don't get paid: now that's enterprising.”
At a time when agricultural income is at record highs and farm commodity prices are soaring, taxpayers have been paying an average of $20 billion annually for the most expensive farm subsidy payments in history. The farm bill passed by Congress even increased subsidies for most crops, in addition to creating a costly permanent disaster assistance program. Despite this, Sen. Lincoln declared that the farm bill “includes the most significant reform in the history of any farm bill” in a December 14 press release. Critics as diverse as Bread for the World, CAGW, the EWG, Oxfam America, and the National Taxpayers Union vehemently disagree with her.
For standing in the way of farm bill reform on the back of the small family farms she claims to help, CAGW names Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) its December 2007 Porker of the Month. ARRA Note: CAGW released this dubious award before learning of the additional pork earmarks Lincoln sponsored in the Omnibus Bill that passed yesterday.
Tags: Blanche Lincoln, CAGW, pork, pork-barrel spenders, porker of the month, Senator
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Bear Sweats in Midwest Due to Global Warming
Hat tip to one of our link partners - Saber Point - for this post: Whoops, my mistake. That bear isn't sweating, he's sporting icesickles. It seems there's a huge ice storm in the midwest that's already killed 15 people, closed highways and caused havoc.
In other words, it's freezing. The next moron who preaches global warming there should be pelted with snowballs.
ARRA Comment: How about we start by pelting Time's runner-up for "Person of the year for 2007" with a few snowballs and ice-sickles.
Tags: global warming, bear sweats, Saber Point To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Send the ACLU a CHRISTmas Card
Hat tip to Church and State: Crossposted at Stop The ACLU
Its become a popular yearly tradition now to send the Anti-Christian Liars Union grinches a Christmas card. I personally think its ineffective, and that the money you waste on a stamp for the organization to toss in the shredder would be better served towards a good cause. So, I encourage you to save that money, dig a little deeper, and contribute to an organization that fights the ACLU and defends Christmas. The Alliance Defense Fund, and Liberty Counsel are both great organizations that defend Christmas each year for free! Why not help groups like that out this year?
Tags: ACLU, anti-christian, Christians, Christmas To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
SCHIP Extended to 2009
by Jeffrey Young, The Hill: . . . After coming up short in their efforts to enact a $35 billion expansion of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) — enduring two presidential vetoes along the way — congressional Democrats signed off on Republican demands to extend the program until 2009. Rather than expiring just before the presidential and congressional elections next year, SCHIP will keep running through March 2009 under the plan originally conceived by House Republicans and hashed out by the Senate Finance Committee and Senate leaders late Monday.
The GOP stood fast against the Democratic bill, which received veto-proof margins in the Senate but came up about a dozen votes shy in the House, despite attracting some GOP support. In doing so, it also stood fast against a multifaceted public relations campaign waged by the Democrats, allied liberal organizations and practically every industry in the healthcare sector. That strategy appears to have paid off, with Democrats abandoning, for now, their plans to ramp up SCHIP.
The GOP claimed victory. “It’s certainly another example of the Democrats caving to the Republican position at the eleventh hour,” said a spokesman for House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio). Not only did the GOP prevent the Democrats from expanding the program, the minority party prevented the majority party from using an SCHIP vote and veto next fall as a wedge issue just before Election Day. . . . [Read More]
Tags: SCHIP, State Childrens Health Insurance Program, US Congress To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
AMT Patch Passed for 1 yr
US House today passed, 352-64, the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) patch which will for one more year ensure 20 to 25 million middle class taxpayers do not become ensnared by a tax originally designed for millionaires. The Senate has already approved it and President George W. Bush will sign the bill.
The majority Democrats lost support from "Blue Dog" fiscal conservatives in their own party because the because the Blue Dogs argued that the AMT cost $50 billion. Their reasoning is flawed in that the AMT taxes were never intended to be collected from the middle class and therefore Congress should not have planned on these funds from the AMT which should have been repealed. Inf act it would have been in during the Clinton administration but Clinton vetoes the bill that would have eliminated the AMT. As always, Democrats even "conservative" blue dogs have never met a tax they didn't like.
AMT is a parallel tax system and was enacted in 1969 to make sure rich people did not take advantage of so many breaks that they paid no income tax. The AMT that throws out most of the deductions and credits allowed by the regular income tax code. People have to calculate their taxes under the two systems and pay the higher of the two bills. However, the AMT was not index to adjust for inflation and since 1969 more middle class people have been exposed to the AMT as incomes have risen with inflation. The relief will ensure that most families earning less than $150,000 a year will not pay the tax. If Congress had failed to enact relief, families making $67,000 could have been subject to the tax.
Tags: alternative minimum tax, AMT, US Congress To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Demrats vote for ‘Omnibus Bill’ that guts border fence
Hat tip to "GIJane" at the The Fox Hole for this summary: Buried in the pages of the current $516 billion ‘Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations’ Bill, is a clause that would cut 3 billion dollars from the two-tiered border security fence that Congress promised to build. The bill, which contains the annual expenditures for domestic and foreign spending in the upcoming fiscal year, included the WOT in Afghanistan, but left out funds for the WOT in Iraq. The whole thing is a ruse by the Democrats to sneak in more pork and spending for thousands of pet projects that were rejected by President Bush. They tried to rush the 3,500 page bill through with only 24 hours for the public and voting members to read what was hidden in the contents.
Washington Times: The 2006 Secure Fence Act specifically called for “two layers of reinforced fencing” and listed five specific sections of border where it should be installed. The new spending bill removes the two-tier requirement and the list of locations.So Hutchinson’s solution is to let the Department of Homeland Stupidity, which has failed miserably at the job of preventing illegals from getting into this country, decide whether a fence is the most effective means to secure the border?
Smooth move, Senator ExLax. I’d love to see our elected “representatives” get a good taste of the consequences of their stupidity. They need to be forced to live on the 1,951 mile stretch of border, where unimpeded throngs of illegals traipse across everyday. They should be forced to live in the neighborhoods infested with and affected by the illegal aliens committing more crimes like molestation, theft, murder, and rape. Better yet, I’d love to collect ‘em up by the truckloads and dump them on the front lawns of every Demrat and RINO who voted against the appropriation for a border fence. . . .
Some of the PORK:
$3.5 million for La Raza, a radical hate group which advocates a takeover of parts of the U.S. Southwest by Mexico.. . . [Read More]
Tags: Blanche Lincoln, border fence, border security, illegal aliens, Middle East, omnibus bill, Politics, terrorism To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Today in Washington D. C. - Dec 19, 2007
Senate reconvened at 11:30 AM today No more roll call votes are expected in the Senate this session.
Last night, the Senate confirmed judge John Tinder of Indiana to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. In addition, the Senate passed a $555 billion omnibus spending bill (H.R. 2764, formerly the State-Foreign Operations appropriations bill) by a vote of 76-17, after senators adopted an amendment 70-25 by Sens. McConnell and Lieberman to add $70 billion to fund the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.
In the first vote of the evening, cloture was not invoked on the House-passed omnibus bill, which did not include Iraq funding. Prior to passing the McConnell-Lieberman amendment, the Senate rejected an amendment by Sens. Feingold and Reid to begin a withdrawal from Iraq and cut off funding for the war by a vote of 24-71. Also rejected was an amendment offered by Sen. Levin to express the sense of Congress that troops in Iraq should be transitioned “to a more limited set of missions.”
The Washington Post reported, “Democrats had vowed only weeks ago to withhold any Iraq-specific money unless strict timelines for troop withdrawal were established, but they instead chose, on a 70 to 25 vote, to remove what appeared to be the final obstacle to sending the spending bill to the White House, where Bush has indicated he will sign it.”
For the second time, the Senate rejected a patch to the alternative minimum tax that would have simultaneously raised taxes. Democrats failed to include an AMT patch coupled with tax hikes in the bill, so it is now up to the House to pass the Senate version of the patch, which prevents over 20 million taxpayers from being affected by the AMT without raising taxes.
Democrats appear to have even decided to throw in the towel on SCHIP, according to The Hill today: “After coming up short in their efforts to enact a $35 billion expansion of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) — enduring two presidential vetoes along the way — congressional Democrats signed off on Republican demands to extend the program until 2009.”
Tags: confirmed judge, John Tinder, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, omnibus funding bill, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C. To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
'Twas The Night Before Iowa"
Richard Collins of www.StopHerNow.com reads from "'Twas The Night Before Iowa," a take off of "'Twas The Night Before Christmas"
Tags: Election 2008, Hillary Clinton, Iowa, political humor, political video To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
U.S. Cuts Emissions Without Kyoto
The Unites States, the world's most famous carbon junkie, is reducing emissions-without any new laws. Watch the below Journal Editorial Report: ---- VIDEO NO LONGER AVAILABLE!
Tags: auto emission standards, carbon dioxide, global warming, Kyoto Protocol, United States
Who Are These Kooks?
Excerpts from article by Chuck Balwin addresses the supporters who raised over $6 million Sunday in support of presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul for the Republican nomination:
. . . if one listens to most of the political pundits in the major media, Ron Paul is some kind of "kook," and his supporters are also a bunch of "kooks." So, the question must be asked, Just who are these kooks that are supporting him, and why are they giving Ron Paul all this money? . . .
Tags: Chuck Baldwin, Election 2008, Ron Paul To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Hoyer says Congress may not be able to patch AMT
ARRA: Are Democrats Preparing to Sock 23 Million Middle-Class Americans with Massive Tax Hike? Check out Rep. Steny Hoyer's comments today:
by Mike Soraghan, The Hill: House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) hinted Tuesday that Congress may not be able to stop a big tax increase from hitting 23 million Americans. Hoyer, pressed on whether Congress would resolve disputes over the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT), said, “Maybe.” . . . Hoyer’s statement came the morning after nearly 30 conservative Blue Dog Democrats signaled their discontent with the Senate AMT plan by voting with Republicans against an adjournment resolution. . . . “There’s no deal” with the Blue Dogs. . . .
Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) [said] . . . Hoyer’s remarks “another reminder that the Democrat majority’s priorities do not reflect those of the American people.” “Democrats created the AMT, repeatedly voted against Republican efforts to abolish it entirely, and have failed to stop it’s impending assault on 23 million middle-class American taxpayers,” he said. . . . An AMT patch must be passed soon to avoid a big tax hike. By waiting as long as they have, lawmakers have already raised the risk of a tax-filing mess that could provide fodder for political attacks. The IRS says it needs seven weeks from the time the president signs the AMT patch into law to update its forms and re-program its computers. . . [Read More]
Tags: alternative minimum tax, AMT, Democrats, increased taxes, US House To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
War On Faith Continues
Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families identifies clearly that War on Faith Continues:
Some months ago, a leftwing group had filed a lawsuit seeking access to White House records and Secret Service visitor logs, specifically seeking to find out how many times James Dobson, Jerry Falwell and I had met with President Bush and his top advisors. The implication was clear: that our democracy is seriously undermined when Christians speak with the president! Yesterday, a federal judge ruled in the group's favor, evidently accepting the argument that it is in the best interests of the nation to know whether Christians - gasp! -- are being let into the White House. Would they care if the president met with Reverend Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson?
Tags: anti-christian, Christian Faith, Gary Bauer To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
FairTax Launches Online Calculator
Bill Smith, ARRA Editor: FairTax.org has launched an new calculator which allows users to determine their tax savings under the FairTax system. It was noted in testing the calculator that it may take more than the purported 5 minutes for those who wish to gather past tax info. But having your last years return present will speed the process. However, for a majority it will probably take less than the advertised time.
Public interest in the FairTax movement has grown because of grassroots supporters who are tired of the invasive nature of the IRS and of their labors being taxes for increasing social and entitlement programs for others while the rest of society does not bear their fair share. Also the endorsement and support by potential presidential candidates has continued to push the FairTax to the forefront. Try out the FairTax calculator at fairtax.org/calculator.
Tags: calculator, FairTax Plan, savings To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Mideast Is Hemorrhaging Christians
by David Aikman, Suffocating the Faithful: American Christians love to hear about areas of the world where Christianity is growing by leaps and bounds. Conversions are daily statistics in many African nations, as in South America, India, and China. According to some credible estimates, China's Christian population has multiplied by an astounding 3,200% since 1949, now nearing 130 million believers. . . . However, . . .
Tags: Christians, Iraq War, Middle East To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Today in Washington D. C. - Dec 18, 2007
From Senate & News Sources: Senate will take up the omnibus spending bill to fund the government passed by the House last night. Clearly, this is not a bill Republicans would have written, but as The Wall Street Journal reports today, the bill “effectively surrender[s] 80% of what Democrats once hoped to add to the president's top line. . . . lawmakers are now prepared to cut $17.5 billion from prior House-passed bills, and most domestic agencies will grow at a less-than-inflation 2% rate.” The Politico, in a story titled, “Liberals lose big time in budget battle,” notes that “Under a veto threat, Democrats removed the reversal of a long-standing anti-abortion provision, abandoned long-sought provisions that would have loosened travel and trade restrictions on Cuba and deleted a line item demanded by unions that would have required federal contractors to pay union wages in disaster areas like New Orleans.”
The House Democrat Omnibus bill (better than it could be is still terrible) is loaded with over 8000 pork funding items while it does not currently fund troops in Iraq which will have to be added. The House voted last night to include only $30 billion for Afghanistan operations but prohibited that money from being used for Iraq. The Democrat majority omnibus must include funding for the troops in Iraq. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell will offer an amendment today to strike the Democrats’ funding restrictions and replace them with a total of $70 billion for Iraq and Afghanistan, with no strings attached. The White House has said President Bush will only sign the bill if Sen. McConnell’s amendment is adopted.
Sen. Harry Reid will decide which amendments are in order and could allow Iraq withdrawal amendments to be considered in addition to the McConnell amendment. If that is the case, Senators could vote once again on something similar to the Levin amendment, which requires a withdrawal to begin with a goal to be completed by a certain date. Also possible is the Feingold amendment which requires a withdrawal and sets a deadline for completion.
On The Floor: Senate reconvened at 10 AM today and used 90 minutes for senators to pay tribute to Sen. Trent Lott (R-MS) who is retiring. Later today, the Senate will take up the House-passed Omnibus appropriations bill (H.R. 2764, formerly the State-Foreign Operations appropriations bill). Yesterday, the Senate invoked cloture (76-10) on the motion to proceed to the FISA reform bill passed by the Intelligence Committee (S. 2248). However, a filibuster by Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT) has forced Democrats to delay further consideration of bill into January.
Tags: omnibus spending bill, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C. To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Monday, December 17, 2007
Clinton campaign wants you to "like" Hillary
Hillary Clinton has now decided the way to get our votes is to make us like her…. How that working for you the readers?
after speaking at a campaign stop in Iowa.
Tags: Democrat, Election 2008, Hillary Clinton, Politics, presidential candidate, video To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Huckabee Campaign Ad: What really matters
Se. McConnell on Troop Funding
Sen. McConnell on AMT Situation
Democratic and Republican sources say that Sen. Joe Lieberman, the independent Democrat from Connecticut and fierce supporter of the war in Iraq, will formally endorse Sen. John McCain tomorrow in New Hampshire.
A McCain spokesperson declined to comment. A source familiar with the endorsement said that the two will appear of NBC's Today Show tomorrow morning and at a town hall meeting in New Hampshire.
The endorsement could help McCain with independents in the state. Combine that with news that Rudy Giuliani is scaling back his advertising buy there, that the Boston Globe endorsed McCain, and that McCain's rivals are spending most of their time in Iowa.
The endorsement is further evidence of Lieberman's slow drift to the right in American politics and is bound to generate intense anger among Democrats who support him. But Lieberman and McCain have often walked in lockstep together on the prosecution of the war, have traveled to Iraq together, and have worked together on domestic issues like climate change. The move will heighten speculation that McCain might ask Lieberman to join his ticket.
In the last two presidential campaigns, Republicans scraped out victories by pressing just enough buttons and mobilizing just enough voters. But such wins breed political polarization and deprive a president of the political capital needed to ask Americans to sacrifice in difficult times.The Des Moines Register in endorsing Senator John McCain said:
The antidote to such a toxic political approach is John McCain. The iconoclastic senator from Arizona has earned his reputation for straight talk by actually leveling with voters, even at significant political expense. The Globe endorses his bid in the New Hampshire Republican primary.
McCain’s views differ from those of this editorial page in a variety of ways. Yet McCain’s honesty has served him well. As a lawmaker and as a candidate, he has done more than his share to transcend partisanship and promote an honest discussion of the problems facing the United States. He deserves the opportunity to represent his party in November’s election.
The leading candidates seeking the Republican nomination for president present an intriguing mix of priorities, personalities and life stories. . . . Yet, for all their accomplishments on smaller stages, none can offer the tested leadership, in matters foreign and domestic, of Sen. John McCain of Arizona. McCain is most ready to lead America in a complex and dangerous world and to rebuild trust at home and abroad by inspiring confidence in his leadership.
In an era of instant celebrity, we sometimes forget the real heroes in our midst. The defining chapter of McCain’s life came 40 years ago as a naval aviator, when he was shot down over Vietnam. The crash broke both arms and a leg. When first seeing him, a fellow prisoner recalls thinking he wouldn’t live the night. He was beaten and kept in solitary confinement, held 5 years. He could have talked. He did not. Son of a prominent Navy admiral, he could have gained early release. He refused.
. . . Elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1982 and the Senate in 1986, he has built an unconventional political career by taking stands based on principle, not party dogma, and frequently pursuing bipartisanship. . . . McCain would enter the White House with deep knowledge of national-security and foreign-policy issues. He knows war, something we believe would make him reluctant to start one. He’s also a fierce defender of civil liberties. As a survivor of torture, he has stood resolutely against it. He pledges to start rebuilding America’s image abroad by closing the Guantanamo prison and beginning judicial proceedings for detainees. . . . The force of John McCain’s moral authority could go a long way toward restoring Americans’ trust in government and inspiring new generations to believe in the goodness and greatness of America.
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