News for social, fiscal & national security conservatives who believe in God, family & the USA. Upholding the rights granted by God & guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, traditional family values, "republican" principles / ideals, transparent & limited "smaller" government, free markets, lower taxes, due process of law, liberty & individual freedom. All content approval rests with the ARRA News Service Editor. Opinions are those of the authors. While varied positions are reported, beliefs & principles remain fixed. No revenue is generated for this site - no paid ads accepted - no payments for articles. Fair Use doctrine is posted & used. Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year] Follow @arra Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org (Pub. Since July, 2006)Home Page
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics
is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Congress In Play!
Gary Bauer,Campaign for Working Families: If the latest Gallup poll is accurate, Democrats are right to be worried. Not only is Obama down, but congressional Democrats could be in danger too, as the Financial Times suggests. According to the latest Gallup poll, the Democrats have lost their huge lead in the generic congressional ballot question.
In February, registered voters preferred Democrat control of Congress by a whopping 15 points over Republicans, 55%-to-40%. Now it's down to three points, 48%-to-45%, within the poll's margin of error. But there's more, and you might want to sit down for this one: Among likely voters, Republicans lead by five points 50%-to-45%! (I suspect the Democrat oil embargo against America and your wallet might have something to do with those numbers!) These findings led the author of the Gallup report to note: “If these numbers are sustained through Election Day -- a big if -- Republicans could be expected to regain control of the U.S. House of Representatives.”
My friends, we can win this election! But it will take a tremendous effort from everyone who cares about preserving our cherished values of faith, family and freedom. Please take a few moments to make sure you and all your like-minded friends and family members are registered to vote. If you are not, or if anyone you know is not registered, please click this link to sign up today. Voter registration deadlines are approaching fast October 6th in most states so please act now! For more on the importance of voting, see Gary Bauer's weekly column at Human Events. Tags:congress, Election 2008, Gary BauerTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Phyllis Schlafly, Eagle Forum: The past two presidential elections taught the losing Democrats a couple of political lessons. They learned that attacks on guns and defense of abortion are no longer winning issues for them, and this new awakening is reflected in their 2008 Party Platform adopted in Denver.
The Platform grudgingly states: "we will preserve Americans' Second Amendment right to own and use firearms." The powers-that-be in the Democratic Party have learned to tolerate a few pro-gun candidates. Feminist pressure won't let the Democrats recede from their "proudly"-stated 2004 Platform position that "Abortion should be safe, legal, and rare."
This year's Platform is just as pro-abortion, but uses slightly softer words, stating that the Democrats support "a woman's ability to make her own life choices and obtain reproductive health care, including birth control" (throughout nine months and with taxpayers' money, of course). Proclaiming that "we will end the Bush Administration's war on science," the Democratic Platform promises to "lift the current Administration's ban on using federal funding for embryonic stem cells." The genuinely pro-life Republican Platform calls for "a ban on human cloning and a ban on the creation of or experimentation on human embryos for research purposes."
The 2008 Democratic Platform stridently toadies to the feminists on all their issues. The Platform reaffirms support for the Equal Rights Amendment (which was declared dead by the Supreme Court 26 years ago), enforcement of Title IX (which has canceled hundreds of men's college athletic teams, thereby costing us dearly in the recent Olympics), passage of the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (which would use a UN treaty to keep abortion legal), and the Violence Against Women Act (which puts a billion taxpayer dollars a year into the coffers of the radical feminists).
The Platform reiterates the phony feminist slogan that "women still earn 76 cents for every dollar that a man earns." That figure includes women who have spent many years out of the workforce and, of those who do have jobs, about a third work only part-time. The Platform promises to "expand" the Family and Medical Leave Act. "Expanding" means forcing employers to pay wages to employees who are on extended leave at times of their own choosing.
The Democratic Platform goes all-out in recognizing the support of their gay rights constituency. "We support the full inclusion of all families, including same-sex couples, in the life of our nation, and support equal responsibility, benefits, and protections." The Platform adds, "We oppose the Defense of Marriage Act." Overwhelmingly passed in 1996 to prevent judges from forcing other states to validate Massachusetts' same-sex marriages, DOMA was one of the most popular laws ever passed and it was even signed by Bill Clinton.
Most of the Democratic Platform consists of promising benefits that will cost already burdened taxpayers aplenty. There's no mention of how these extravagant handouts will be paid for. For example, the Democratic Platform enthusiastically endorses the incredibly extravagant worldwide handouts in the bill sponsored by Barack Obama called "the U.S. Millennium Development Goals, which aim to cut extreme poverty in half by 2015." The Platform promises to "double our annual investment in meeting these challenges to $50 billion by 2012.
The Democrats' mindset is that "we need stronger international institutions." So, the Platform promises to "create a $2 billion Global Education Fund ... with the goal of supporting a free, quality, basic education for every child in the world." The Democrats want the government to take care of American kids from birth through college. "We will make quality, affordable early childhood care and education available to every American child from the day he or she is born," and "we will provide all our children a world-class education, from early childhood through college."
The Democratic Platform is full of proposals to raid the pockets of John Q. Taxpayer and reduce the American standard of living. This includes "an economy-wide cap and trade program," a plan to "reduce oil consumption by at least 35 percent, or ten million barrels per day, by 2030," and designing legislation based on the belief that "global climate change is the planet's greatest threat."
These expensive plans will require a giant expansion of government money and government jobs. The Democrats must have had this result in mind when they promised they "will make government a more attractive place to work." There is much more expensive foolishness in the Democratic Platform, but the plank that takes the cake is: "we oppose laws that require identification in order to vote or register to vote." That sounds like the Democrats are planning on winning the 2008 election by stuffing the ballot box. Tags:Democrat Platform, Eagle Forum, Phyllis SchlaflyTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Congress Needs to Vote on a Commonsense Energy Plan
U.S. Rep. John Boozman (R-AR) voted no to adjournment on Thursday, just four days after the House convened after a five week vacation and majority leaders failed to hold an up-or-down vote on H.R. 6566 the “American Energy Act.” Rep. John Boozman said,
“The longer we wait to vote on a comprehensive energy plan, the more Arkansans are forced to stretch their dollar. It’s time that Congress act to bring relief to all Americans. With only ten legislative working days left until targeted adjournment, I’m making every effort to voice the concerns I’ve heard from Third District residents.
H.R. 6566, the ‘American Energy Act’ is an “all-of-the-above” approach for more conservation, more clean renewable and alternative fuels, and more production of American-made energy in environmentally sound ways. The need for sources of energy other than oil is apparent because Hurricane Ike is reaching shore in a matter of hours and forcing interruptions in the supply of gasoline to Arkansas. I encourage my colleagues in all political parties to support the ‘American Energy Act’ and I’m hopeful House majority leaders will respond to the concerns of the American people.
“Media reports show Nancy Pelosi plans to introduce energy legislation within the next two weeks. It is imperative language in the bill includes an ‘all-of-the-above’ approach so we use available American energy sources which includes the opportunity for drilling on the Outer Continental Shelf."
The ‘American Energy Act’ was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives in July and is cosponsored by Boozman.Tags:Arkansas, energy plan, John Boozman, US HouseTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Everybody seems to have some type of Arkansas Connection! KATV-7: There is an Arkansas connection to Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin: Her former junior high school basketball coach lives in north central Arkansas. Sarah Heath is how Jerry and Carol Russell know her. . . . Jerry Russell was Sarah Palin's 7th-grade basketball coach, and 8th-grade U.S. History teacher.
While Palin never expressed an interest in politics back then, Russell says was always active. One of his fondest memories is the final seconds of a rival game. It was up to Palin to make the last shot. (Russell) “She almost made it, but she missed it. The buzzer blew, they all came around her and she put her hands up over her face and started crying. I put my arm around her and said, ‘Sarah, don't cry. It's just a game..’ ‘Yeah, but we lost.’ She just couldn't stand to get beat. I'd love to see her get into the White House. There’s no doubt in my mind, if she had to sit down in the president’s chair today, she could handle it."Tags:Arkansas, Sarah PalinTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Update: Source Revealed - Bill Smith, ARRA Editor: Being a conservative, I am not one to latch on to political rumors. But one source I have has been right on several races this year and identified in advance of most pundits, that John McCain and Sarah Palin would be candidates on the GOP ticket. Today the source is saying that Joe Biden will resigns as the Democrat's vice-presidential candidate and that Hillary Clinton will take the position. Some source info follows:
Hillary Clinton to be named Obama's V-P candidate "I have a lifetime of experience. Sen. McCain has a lifetime of experience. Senator Obama has a speech he delivered in 2002." (Hillary Rodham Clinton) This piece is NOT copyrighted. MoveOn.Org on the Move Away from Biden? Bulletin at 10:30 ET: One of my fact-checkers just provided the following: She's a Hillaryite converted to Sarah Adoration. She's working to verify what she sent. "I just was told that MoveOn.org has pulled their Obama/Biden ads on facebook and replaced them with just a simple "Obama" ad. I can't find the sticker ad on my ad-board, I usually get it."
We have received information from sources high in the Democratic Party that, in a cynical, desperation move, Hillary Rodham Clinton will replace the hapless Joe Biden as V-P candidate on the Obama ticket. I will send out more information on this within the next hours -- and days. Hillary Clinton has said that Barack H. Obama is not qualified to be Commander-in-Chief. Presumably, he hasn't grown any more qualified in the past few weeks. As the saying now goes, "It took a Republican woman [Sarah Palin] to have the Obama Dems name a female to the ticket." What the new campaign slogan? "I'm propping up an empty suit?" "He can sleep while I stay up till 3 a.m.?"
Analysis of the coming "new" Democratic ticket: One of the key moments in this development was when Joe Biden said in NH that Hillary Clinton would have been a "better" V-P candidate than he. I have been dancing around for days on blogs saying that "Hillary is coming . . ." The "rumors" various people at Clintons4McCain and NoBama Mission had during the run-up to the Convention that Hillary didn't get the nod because "she asked for too much" were true. (Of course, with the Obama crowd, one wonders if "too much" was a promise that she wouldn't have to make coffee for The Chosen One.) Right about now, with the Obama Campaign falling like a boulder from the sky, Hillary can get (promises! promises!) just about anything.
Okay, on Biden: the one straw that broke "Joe Camel's" back was the fact that the Palin Effect is going to cost the Democrats many seats in the Congress. The Rassmussen Poll shows that the huge "generic Democrat" lead nationally in congressional races has disappeared. I believe this has been noted (and how!) by the Democrats now likely to lose their seats.
I also believe the "transfer" of V-P roles probably COULD take place as early as Monday, although it could occur somewhat later. Biden -- "health problems," you know -- will not be "sick enough" to drop out of his Senate race. He doesn't look any sicker than usual to me. He does look old and tired. He got 9,000 votes in the presidential primaries, his high-water mark in two decades of running futilely for President.
Yes, Hillary Clinton can endorse Obama, the man who labeled her a warmonger, a liar, and a racist. She can endorse the politician whom her husband claimed "played the race card" against him. Hey, friends this is today's "Obama Democrats." Nothing lost save honor and integrity.
If the above source is correct, Obama will be naming Hillary the V-P candidate. If incorrect, we will see McCain and Palin elected in November and then in 2012 we could have a historical race of two women running for President with Hillary Clinton on the top of the Dem's ticket and Sarah Palin on the top of the Republican ticket. Tags:Election 2008, Democratic Party, Democrats, Hillary Clinton, Joe BidenTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The RNC has launchedMeet Barack Obama[http://meetbarackobama.com/]. Get the GOP insights viewpoint on Barack Obama and Joe Biden! Tags:Barack Obama, Election 2008, GOP, RNCTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Bill Smith, Editor: Yesterday, I flew to Arizona to attend the State Policy Network and the Sam Adams Alliance Samsphere SPN Blogger meet-up. Sam Adams Alliance has been the gracious host and funded limited government bloggers to meet together.
Since my flight took me through Houston with my return trip scheduled back through Houston, I was advised my return has been placed on hold thanks to Hurricane Ike. Our take off from Houston was delayed not because of commercial aircraft but by the increased traffic of private airplanes from surrounding smaller airports all taking to the air to leave Ike behind. For a short while it was like one big aircraft traffic jam in the sky. Although eventually I may be rerouted and arrive back at Little Rock, my concern is for the people of Texas and the surrounding areas that will get the brunt of Hurricane Ike. The heavy rains and potential tornadoes may even reach into Arkansas which has already had a very wet stormy year.
The gathering here in Scottsdale is a "mixed bag of policy types, activists, bloggers, journalists and the like, spanning the spectrum from some kind of libertarian to some kind of conservative." However all are in agreement about the need for government transparency and limited government appropriate to community, county, state and national level. However, at a more in depth level, the group is somewhat fractious. The majority are pulling John McCain / Sarah Palin with special interest on Sarah Palin. But there are also Bob Barr supporters. To quote J.D. Tuccille of the Disloyal Opposition,
There's a growing chasm between many libertarians and conservatives, but people seem to be tripping over the damned thing without noticing that they've stubbed their toes.
The one thing the libs and cons do seem to agree on is that Sarah Palin was an inspired choice. The staff of one organization told me they pulled down their office Barr memorabilia after she won the nod. Maybe Palin is lying across that chasm all by herself as a human bridge.
Meeting with old and new bloggers and policy network people has been worthwhile. Besides current events and the special SPN presentations, many were interested in the new Let's Get This Rightmovement and the various things that went on "back stage" at the RNC 2008 and "life after the election." Bloggers reviewed various strategies and tactics. There has been the continued 's emphasis on Web 2.0 and online social networking here -- tutorials and advice that are ideal for anybody who needs to promote a blog or a Website.
Tags:Arizona, Arkansas, Houston, Hurricane Ike, Let's Get This Right, SPN, State Policy NetworkTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
On The Floor: The Senate reconvened at 9:30 AM today and resumed consideration of the Defense authorization bill (S. 3001). There will be no votes today or Monday. An energy summit is being hosted by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee today. The House yesterday (9/11) reaffirmed by a vote of 376-29 the Senate vote on (HR 6532) to rescue the federal highway trust fund by transfer (restoration) $8 billion from the treasury to the highway fund.
From Senate & News Sources: This morning, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell addressed en energy summit being held by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, saying, “Republicans, I assure you, are open to any reasonable suggestion that will lead to a concrete, meaningful result.” This is what Republicans have been looking for all along, and it’s a positive sign that Democrats are moving in that direction. However, the energy bill House Democrats have unveiled has a number of troublesome provisions that may not get the country to where we need to be on energy production.
CQ Today reports, “While the [Democrats’] draft bill would authorize coastal states to permit drilling at least 50 miles off their shores, the states would not share in royalties paid on energy production. Critics say that would eliminate any incentive for states to opt in.” Indeed, The Hill reported yesterday on concerns about the lack of royalties for states, “rais[ing] the possibility that expanded offshore drilling could be approved by the federal government but blocked by coastal states.”
Further, some Republicans are concerned that the bill “would leave out some of the most promising areas for offshore production, including the Manteo region off of North Carolina and the Destin Zone off Florida,” according to CongressDaily. And Democrat Rep. Jim Matheson of Utah is disappointed that the bill doesn’t remove the ban on oil shale exploration.
These are far from the only concerna with the Democrats’ proposal. According to CQ Today, the House bill would also“[r]equire utilities to produce a percentage of their electricity from renewable sources, such as wind and solar” and would “[r]oll back tax incentives for oil companies.” These ideas were rejected by the Senate last year and could threaten the bill’s passage this year. Eliminating tax incentives for oil companies could hurt competitiveness and increase production costs at a time when we want to be encouraging domestic energy production. The renewable electricity production rate is all but certain to raise utility rates around the country, but especially in the South.
Republicans stand ready to support bipartisan legislation that makes serious efforts to “find more and use less” American energy. But if Democrats put forth bills that are not going result in real offshore oil exploration and contain harmful, previously rejected tax hikes and mandates, the chances of passing a meaningful energy bill are diminished. Tags:energy plan, offshore drilling, 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!
LITTLE ROCK - Public colleges and universities in Arkansas can admit illegal immigrants and are not required to verify the citizenship of prospective students, state Attorney General Dustin McDaniel said in an opinion Wednesday.
McDaniel said there does not appear to be any federal or state law barring higher education institutions from admitting undocumented immigrants, although he said institutions are free to adopt their own policies requiring verification of prospective students' citizenship.
"It is my opinion in response to your specific questions, that undocumented individuals may enroll in Arkansas' public colleges and universities and that such schools are not obliged to verify citizenship as a condition of enrollment," McDaniel said in the opinion requested by state Rep. Rick Green, R-Van Buren.
Federal and state laws leave it up to individual institutions to decide whether to admit undocumented immigrants, McDaniel said.
In May, Gov. Mike Beebe directed the state Department of Higher Education to send a letter to state colleges and universities instructing them to add questions of residency and U.S. citizenship on admission forms and to require a Social Security number or visa number.
Beebe spokesman Matt DeCample said Wednesday the opinion by McDaniel does not conflict with Beebe's instructions to higher education officials. "Our primary concern all along has been in-state benefits and making sure those are not going to undocumented aliens," DeCample said. "That is not specifically discussed in this opinion."
Beebe has said that providing in-state tuition to illegal immigrants but denying it to out-of-state students who are U.S. citizens could violate the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. DeCample said state colleges and universities were instructed to comply with federal law, "and there is nothing in this opinion that would change that."
Department of Higher Education spokesman Dale Ellis said Wednesday the department has never told colleges or universities they could not admit students who have no proof of citizenship. "If you give an in-state benefit to a person who is not a citizen or a legal resident of the United States, then that institution has to give that same benefit to any citizen of the United States," Ellis said. "That's what that was about. That was not ever any kind of effort to keep illegal aliens out of school."
Asked if requiring prospective students to provide a Social Security number or visa number has the practical effect of keeping out illegal immigrants, Ellis said it does not. The requirement merely allows schools to determine who is and is not legible for in-state tuition, he said.
"Nobody's going to get kicked out of school," he said. Ellis said he did not know if any Arkansas schools had opted to admit illegal immigrants at out-of-state tuition rates, but he said the schools "absolutely" are free to do so.
Green said Wednesday he had not seen the opinion, but said he had no reason to disagree with McDaniel's interpretation of the law. Green said he believes state-run schools should not admit illegal immigrants, particularly at a time when funds are short for basic needs such as health care and roads, though he said that does not necessarily mean the law should be changed. "I hate to think we have to pass a law about everything, to do what I think is the right thing," he said.
Tags:Arkansas, Attorney General, college education, Dustin McDaniel, illegal aliensTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
There won’t be much in the way of politics today in the U.S. Capitol as both sides of the aisle pause to remember those killed seven years ago today in the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and on Flights 11, 175, 77, and 93.
There will be a congressional ceremony at the West Front of the Capitol at 11:45 AM. At 12:30 PM, there will be a moment of silence to remember the victims of 9/11. A memorial in remembrance of September 11, 2001 will be dedicated at the Pentagon later today.
The Senate reconvenes at 10:30 AM today and will resume consideration of the Defense authorization bill (S. 3001). Yesterday, the Senate rejected an amendment to the Defense authorization bill by Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) to boost missile defense funding by $271 million. Senators approved an amendment by Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) to repeal an offset which reduced survivor benefits for people receiving both DoD and VA benefits.Tags:9-11, 2008, US CongressTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The Patriot Post Helps Us Remember: We mark the seventh anniversary of September 11, 2001, when 2,996 innocents, mostly American citizens, lost their lives in the murderous attacks of Islamic fascists against our country. In keeping with the presidential proclamation designating September 11, 2008, as Patriot Day, all flags should be flown at half staff in memory of those who lost their lives six years ago. We invite you to join us as we offer our prayers for the families of those lost and for ourArmed Forces now serving on the front lines of the war that began that day.
As you remember September 11th, we invite you to visit The Patriot’s resource to commemorate the attacks on our countrymen,“Day of Terror: A September 11 Retrospective”. Now, as we move forward and continue to engage our jihadi foes in battle fronts around the globe, let us never forget why we fight. Tags:9-11, New York City, terrorism, The Patriot PostTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Lawmakers Who Oppose Offshore Drilling Risk Losing Seats in November
Fox News:On Saturday, President Bush saidif Congress doesn't permit offshore drilling to increase U.S. oil supplies and possibly ease gasoline prices, lawmakers should not expect voters to support them in November. In his radio address, Bush said experts claim the Outer Continental Shelf could eventually produce nearly 10 years' worth of U.S. oil production. Yet while record fuel prices have focused more attention on increasing domestic energy production, experts also note that lifting the congressional ban on offshore drilling wouldn't produce more oil for five to seven years.
Bush accused Democratic leaders in Congress of ignoring the public's demand for relief from high energy prices. "This is their final chance to take action before the November elections," Bush said, noting that lawmakers soon will recess again to hit the campaign trail. "If members of Congress do not support the American people at the gas pump, then they should not expect the American people to support them at the ballot box." Congress broke for its August recess without finding agreement on how big a role expanded domestic oil and gas production should have in a broader energy bill. . . . [Full Story] Tags:congressmen, Fox News, offshore drilling, President George Bush, US CongressTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Sen. Barack Obama on Tuesday said that Sen. John McCain's claim that he will shake up Washington after agreeing with President Bush for so long is like "putting lipstick on a pig".
To the John McCain campaign, this was an example of unbridled sexism. "Sen. Obama ... uttered what I can only describe to be disgusting comments, comparing our vice presidential nominee, Sarah Palin, to a pig," former Mass. governor Jane Swift declared.On a conference call with reporters, Swift, the newly designated chair of the "Palin Truth Squad," demanded that Obama apologize -- and said, when pressed, that he must have been talking about Palin because she is the only one of the four candidates who wears lipstick.
On The Floor: Senate will resume consideration of the Defense authorization bill (S. 3001). Senators are likely to begin debate on several amendments to the bill today. Senate cleared the highway trust fund transfer (restoration) of $8 billion (HR 6532) by voice vote. House still must still The House must reaffirm the change by the Senate which is expected to be done quickly.
From Senate & News Sources: Senate and House Democrat leadership are now saying they intend to have votes on energy packages that include some sort of drilling provision. However, the key questions remain: will Democrats allow for a full debate and amendment process and will they stuff the legislation with poison pills?
At a press meeting yesterday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) )said,
“So next week we’re going to do energy. . . . What amendments will be debated -- I hope there would be perhaps a Democratic alternative, maybe a Republican alternative, and then, of course, the gang of 10 . . . their legislation, their bipartisan legislation. I would hope that would make everyone happy, that we can then move on to doing other things.”
We’ve heard this type of promise from Reid before. Back in July, Reid offered two amendments to the Democrats’ energy speculation bill (far fewer than Republicans were looking for) but then prevented amendments by Republicans. Will Reid actually allow amendments this time?
In the House,The Hillreports that House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) said "House Democrats would allow the Republicans a chance to offer an alternative bill, a break from the Democrats’ pre-recess strategy of bringing their energy bills to the floor exclusively under the suspension of the rules to prevent a forced drilling vote.”
While being wary of Democrats’ poor track record on allowing open debate on energy bills, House Republicans are also concerned about unacceptable provisions being included in the Democrats’ bill.CQ reports, “‘Nobody has seen their bill yet,’ said Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-OH). ‘But based on descriptions, it would wall off about 80 percent of the outer continental shelf for drilling permanently. I don’t think that’s what anyone wants.’”
A Senate source expressed,
"Americans are looking for real energy solutions, and it’s a positive sign that Democrats are finally willing to address the issue of increasing domestic energy production. But no one wins if Democrats shut down the amendment process or pack legislation full of provisions Republicans can’t in good conscience go along with. Hopefully, Democrats have changed their tune from earlier in the year, but their track record does not inspire confidence."
Tags:domestic energy, energy bill, Harry Reid, John Boehner, oil drilling, Steny Hoyer, 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!
Tony Perkins, FRC: Vice Presidential candidate Senator Joe Biden (D-Del.) has found himself joining Speaker Nancy Pelosi in a dispute with the nation's Catholic bishops over their representation of Catholic theology. Denver Archbishop Charles J. Chaput and Denver Auxiliary Bishop James Conley summarized the situation in the letter they released yesterday: "Meet the Press has become a national window on the flawed moral reasoning of some Catholic public servants. On Aug. 24, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, describing herself as an ardent, practicing Catholic, misrepresented the overwhelming body of Catholic teaching against abortion to the show's nationwide audience, while defending her 'pro-choice' abortion views. On Sept. 7, Sen. Joseph Biden compounded the problem to the same Meet the Press audience." After Speaker Pelosi's comments, at least 23 Catholic bishops responded to her remarks. After Senator Biden's comments more bishops are preparing to respond to what they see as a misrepresentation of Catholic faith by public officials. In addition to the Colorado bishops speaking out, Bishop Robert Morlino of Madison was so moved after watching Sen. Biden this past Sunday he scrapped his planned homily and instead addressed Catholic politicians who "forget" what they are taught in Catholic religious education both about faith and about biology. It would be wise for "Meet the Press" to have one of these leading clergymen on their program to clarify what Catholic teaching really says. See also:CNA: Bishops criticize Biden's abortion remarks for flawed reasoningTags:bishops, Catholic, FRC, heresy, Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, Tony PerkinsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The Morning Bell, Heritage Foundation: Congressional Democrats returned to work yesterday after their five-week summer vacation. While House Republicans stayed in Washington to debate energy policy all summer, Congress now has only three weeks left before it adjourns for the year. Many are predicting that little will get done in September, but one issue is guaranteed to be addressed: energy. While Democrats would prefer to do nothing until next year, their failure to pass appropriations bills means Congress must pass a continuing resolution by September 30 or the government will shut down.
The Gang of 10: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has promised a vote on the bill originally stitched together by five Republicans and five Democrats. Their plan would codify most of the current OCS ban, including all drilling within 50 miles of the coast (only 25 miles is needed to prevent offshore platforms from disturbing coastal views). Only parts of the ban in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico would be lifted, while some Atlantic states would be allowed to opt in and others would not, and the entire Pacific ban would become permanent. Under very generous assumptions, this policy would open only 22% of unavailable oil and 29% of unavailable natural gas. But even these meager new supplies come at a steep cost. The Gang of 10 plan also includes costly new government mandates (like the ones that are keeping this new 65 mpg Ford from the American marketplace) and it raises taxes on new oil and gas production.
The Pelosi Package: House Democrats have not publicly unveiled their plan, but early reports indicate it allows even less affordable energy to come to market. Pelosi would not allow drilling within 100 miles off any coast and also does not plan to allow any of the states to share in any of the fees and royalties oil companies always pay for the right to drill. To placate her environmentalist base angered by these paltry concessions, Pelosi will punish oil and natural gas producers with $18 billion in new taxes and slap power producers with costly new alternative energy mandates.
House GOP: The “all-of-the-above” energy plan outlined by House Republicans not only opens access to all estimated 18.17 billion barrels of oil and 77 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in the OCS, but it also includes the estimated 10.3 billion barrels of oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge . The approach also attempts to improve energy conservation with tax credits for businesses and families who purchase more fuel-efficient vehicles. Barriers to the revival of the nuclear power industry are removed, and the tax credits for renewable energy (including but not limited to wind, solar and hydrogen) are part of the plan.
The politicians in Washington are going to be making a lot of claims about who is really trying to make energy more affordable for Americans. It is important Americans know the facts about whose policies will actually accomplish that. Tags:domestic drilling, drilling, energy policy, Gang of 10, Harry Reid, Heritage Foundation, Morning Bell, Nancy PelosiTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
We Need an up-or-down vote on the American Energy Act
Rep. John Boozman, 3rd Dist, Arkansas: After a five-week vacation, Congress has 14 working days left to pass a comprehensive energy plan that provides relief to Arkansans suffering from the high cost of fuel. I reaffirmed my commitment for H.R. 6566, the American Energy Act, by signing a pledge from the grassroots organization, Making Congress Accountable. This group is persuading my colleagues to work together to pass this important piece of legislation with NO earmarks by the November elections.
The American Energy Act is an “all-of-the-above” approach for more conservation, more clean renewable and alternative fuels, and more production of American-made energy in environmentally sound ways. A recent Quinnipiac survey shows Americans support the “all-of-the-above” energy solutions by nearly a 2-1 margin. The poll, which surveyed 1,547 likely voters nationwide, with a margin of error of +/- 2.5 percentage points finds:
• 62 – 32% in favor of offshore drilling;
• 56 – 35% in favor of building new nuclear plants;
• 51 – 42% back drilling in the Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge;
• 87 – 10% back government funds for renewable energy such as wind and solar power.
Despite a commonsense energy bill that the American public overwhelming supports, House majority leaders aren’t happy and are proposing their own energy legislation that isn’t as comprehensive. The reality is the American Energy Act is meaningful legislation that allows us access to all kinds of our own energy. This is what the American people want and it’s something that merits an up-or-down vote on the House floor.Tags:Arkansas, energy policy, John Boozman, US HouseTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by Brian Fitzpatrick, Senior Editor, Culture and Media Institute: The monster springs suddenly, without warning, from the frigid depths of the Bering Sea. Striding imperiously onto dry land, it slowly turns its crested head toward an isolated fishing village. The people scatter, screaming in terror. All, that is, but the intrepid stringer for an out-of-town newspaper, who phones his editor with a desperate message: “Call out the Army, the Navy, the Air Force! We must use every weapon at our disposal to destroy this minion of Hell before it kills us all!”
by Kerby Anderson, Point of View: After two weeks of convention speeches and an ongoing political campaign, you might think that we are living in the worst economy since the Great Depression. And you would probably also assume that the average citizen is terribly pessimistic about the future. But recent polls show that while Americans may be pessimistic about the economy and the country, they are relatively optimistic about their own economic circumstances.
Karlyn Bowman of the American Enterprise Institute has looked at recent polls and has concluded: “Most Americans are feeling pretty good about their jobs and personal lives.” She finds that 76% of Americans are actually optimistic about the direction of their lives and personal economic situations. This is intriguing since only 18% are optimistic about the country.
The August 2008 Gallup poll shows that 48% are completely satisfied with their jobs and another 42% are somewhat satisfied with their jobs. OK, so maybe they are satisfied about their jobs. What about the possibility that the job they love will be sent overseas? After all, both liberal and conservative commentators complain about outsourcing of jobs. Apparently, the typical American is not worried about this, at least not for his or her job. Only 8% worry about their jobs being outsourced to foreign competitors.
So what do Americans worry about? Two words: gas prices. Three-quarters of Americans in the July Gallup survey blame high gas prices for their financial challenges. By contrast, eight years ago only 40% listed gas prices as their major economic concern. So on one hand, Americans are optimistic about their personal economic situation while they are also pessimistic about the economy and the government. Why the disconnect? Karlyn Bowman says: “The relentless negativity of the media.” To that I might add the negative campaign speeches. It seems to me that the American people are looking for some economic optimism from the media and the candidates. I’m Kerby Anderson, and that’s my point of view. Tags:economy, Gallup Poll, gas prices, Kerby Anderson, media bias, Point of ViewTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
On The Floor: Yesterday the Congress returned from its August recess. The Senate voted 83-0 to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to the Defense bill. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell addressed the Senate on the energy crisis:
“We still have a few more weeks to do right by the American people. . . . Congress has been unable to come together on a comprehensive solution to our nation’s energy crisis. But the book hasn’t closed yet on the 110th Congress. There is still time to act on this issue. And we should. . . . Americans want us to act to increase offshore exploration. There is nothing to fear in this. We can and should increase domestic energy exploration even as we encourage the use of alternative energy sources and new conservation measures. There is no good reason we can’t all get behind a balanced approach that would allow us to find more and use less at the same time.”
From News Sources: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said that the Senate could consider energy legislation next week, but, just like earlier in the summer, he appears determined to limit debate and amendments on a critical issue to the American people. Today, CongressDaily reports that Democrats are working on putting together an energy bill that includes some expansion of offshore drilling. However, Democrats continue to attempt to couple proposals to produce more American energy with previously rejected Democrat mandates and tax increases. The proposal being floated is rather modest, limiting drilling to just four southeastern states, and not even addressing the West Coast, where a recent poll found 51% of Californians now supporting more offshore drilling. Tags:Harry Reid, Mitch McConnell, US Congress, 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!
Congress Returns From Vacation: The Senate will reconvene at 3 PM and resume consideration of the motion to proceed to the Defense authorization bill (S. 3001). The House returns at 2 PM today and will consider a number of bills under suspension of the rules.
As the 110th Congress returns for what may be its final month of work, it appears poised to end just as it began: with Democrats pushing partisan legislation while managing to accomplish next to nothing of consequence. Though there are many important issues to address in September, including energy, taxes, Defense Department spending, and funding the government, Democrats are apparently suggesting they’d like to return to partisan bills that have little prospect of advancement. Democrats want to return to the Lily Ledbetter Act, which would overturn a Supreme Court ruling from earlier this summer which rules employees must actually pay heed to statutes of limitation when considering wage discrimination.
Energy remains a critical issue, yet Democrats controlling both houses of Congress have given little indication that they will actually allow a full and fair debate on energy, as opposed to the take-it-or-leave-it tactics they used to push flawed energy bills over the summer. Indeed, Democrats in the House may attempt to attach previously-rejected measures such as “use it or lose it,” and renewable energy mandates to scaled-back drilling proposals.
Of course, one of Congress’ most basic jobs is to fund the federal government, something that Democrats have not been able to bring themselves to address at all so far this year. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid both signaled early on this year that they were not interested in trying to hold down spending in order to get appropriations bills approved by the president.
So as we approach the end of the fiscal year on September 30th, Congress will have to pass a continuing resolution (CR) in order to fund the government for the rest of the year. Plans for the CR remain fuzzy, but a critical question is whether a renewal of the ban on offshore drilling will be attached to the measure. If Democrats want to end this Congress on a positive note and accomplish something for the American people, they would do well to consider dropping plans for partisan show votes and concentrate on working on a bipartisan basis on government funding, defense issues, and energy solutions. Unfortunately, their track record over the last two years doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence that this will be the case.Tags:continuing resolution, CR, 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!
60% of voters say Supreme Court should base rulings on Constitution
Rasmussen Reports that . . . During his acceptance speech last night at the Republican National Convention in Minnesota, John McCain told the audience, “We believe in a strong defense, work, faith, service, a culture of life, personal responsibility, the rule of law, and judges who dispense justice impartially and don't legislate from the bench.” Most American voters (60%) agrees and says the Supreme Court should make decisions based on what is written in the constitution, while 30% say rulings should be guided on the judge’s sense of fairness and justice. The number who agree with McCain is up from 55% in August. . . . The survey also found that 65% of voters think the Supreme Court justices have their own political agendas. That number has changed little over the past month. Just 18% believe the judges remain impartial when making decisions. . . . [Supreme Court Update] Tags:Rasmussen Reports, Supreme Court, U.S. ConstitutionTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
A new video that pays tribute to Republican vice presidential candidate, Sarah Palin, has become an Internet hit. "Sarah Smile by Lloyd Marcus" is a song that singer/songwriter, Lloyd Marcus, produced - set to the tune of the Hall & Oates hit "Sara Smile." Shame on those who are trying to depict her as a wacko; they're insulting most Americans.
Tags:Lloyd Marcus, Republican, Sarah Palin, vice president, videoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Bill Smith, ARRA Editor: I am not an advocate for watching CNN which has been a biased supporter of Obama. However, last month we experienced the Democrats pushing through an Omnibus bill. The Democrats overwhelmed the stand of Sen. Tom Coburn (R) expressed in this video. In this CNN report Lou Dobbs and his colleagues address how your current government works under the present Democrat controlled Senate and House. This is the same Senate controlled by a Sen. Barack Obama confident and supporter Sen. Harry Reid. Sen. Obama has not been an advocate for "change" in U.S. Senate or House operations controlled by his democrat colleagues. You may be wondering why? Being absent, not voting or voting present on legislation doesn't influence change. However, the major reason is that Sen. Obama hopes to be president and needs these fellow Democrats to support not only his candidacy for president but also his propsoed agenda of more tax and spend bills. It is obvious that Obama has not been an agent of change in the US Senate. Check out Sen. Barack Obama's United Nations Global Proverty Act (S. 2433).
Tags:Barack Obama, change, Citizens Against Government Waste, CNN, government, Lou Dobbs, US Senate, ARRATo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
MSNBC "Un-achors" Keith Olbermann & Chris Matthews
New York Times — MSNBC tried a bold experiment this year by putting two politically incendiary hosts, Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews, in the anchor chair to lead the cable news channel's coverage of the election. That experiment appears to be over. After months of accusations of political bias and simmering animosity between MSNBC and its parent network NBC, the channel decided over the weekend that the NBC News correspondent and MSNBC host David Gregory would anchor news coverage of the coming debates and election night. Mr. Olbermann and Mr. Matthews will remain as analysts during the coverage. . . . [MSNBC Takes Incendiary Hosts From Anchor Seat] Tags:Chris Matthews, Keith Olbermann, media bias, MSNBCTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by Susan Page, USA TODAY (/7/08): The Republican National Convention has given John McCain and his party a significant boost, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken over the weekend shows, as running mate Sarah Palin helps close an "enthusiasm gap" that has dogged the GOP all year. McCain leads Democrat Barack Obama by 50%-46% among registered voters, the Republican's biggest advantage since January and a turnaround from the USA TODAY poll taken just before the convention opened in St. Paul. Then, he lagged by 7 percentage points. . . . McCain has narrowed Obama's wide advantage on handling the economy, by far the electorate's top issue. Before the GOP convention, Obama was favored by 19 points; now he's favored by 3. . . . [Source] Tags:Barack Obama, John McCain, RNC ConventionTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
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