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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics
is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato
Friday, January 27, 2017
Donald Trump, Revolutionary
by Judge Andrew Napolitano: Within four hours of becoming president of the United States, Donald Trump signed an executive order intended to limit immediately the effects of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) in ways that are revolutionary.
With the stroke of a pen, the president assaulted the heart of the law that was the domestic centerpiece of his predecessor's administration. How did this happen? How can a U.S. president, who took an oath to enforce the laws faithfully, gut one of them merely because he disagrees with it?
Here is the back story.
When Obamacare went through Congress in 2010, all Democrats in Congress supported it and all congressional Republicans were opposed. The crux of their disagreement was the law's command that everyone in the United States obtain and maintain health insurance -- a command that has come to be known as "the individual mandate."
Republicans argued that Congress was without the authority to compel people to enter the marketplace by purchasing a product -- that such decisions should be freely made by individuals and that that freedom was protected from governmental interference by the Constitution. Democrats argued that the commerce clause of the Constitution, which permits Congress to regulate commerce among the states, also permits it to compel commercial activity on the part of individuals who make up a highly regulated component of interstate commerce.
To ensure compliance with the individual mandate, the law provided that the IRS would collect the fair market value of a bare-bones insurance policy from those who did not obtain and maintain one. The government would then take that money and purchase a health insurance policy for that individual who rejected the law's command.
Though Congress did not call it a tax and the government's lawyers uniformly and consistently denied in all courts where it was challenged that it was a tax and President Barack Obama rejected the idea that it was a tax and even the lawyers for the challengers denied it was a tax, a 5-4 majority in the Supreme Court characterized the money collected by the IRS from noncompliant individuals as a tax.
This is profoundly significant for constitutional purposes because though Congress cannot regulate anything it wants, Congress can tax anything it wants, as long as the tax falls equally on those in the class of people who are paying it. This unheard-of characterization of a non-tax as a tax was necessary to salvage Obamacare before the high court because a different 5-4 majority in the same case ruled that the Republican congressional argument was essentially correct -- that the commerce clause does not empower Congress to compel commercial activity.
All of this has been debated loud and long since the law was enacted in 2010, validated by the Supreme Court in 2012 and came into Trump's crosshairs in the Republican presidential primaries and again in the general election campaign.
Trump argued that the government cannot compel commercial activity, even as part of a large regulatory scheme, because the Constitution protects everyone's right to purchase a lawful good or not to purchase one. He also asserted that Obamacare does not make economic sense because its regulation of the practice of medicine and its administration of health insurance have resulted in a diminution of choices for consumers, which in turn has raised premiums, as well as deductibles, and chased primary care physicians from the marketplace. The Obama mantra that you could keep your doctor and your health insurance under Obamacare proved to be patently false, Trump argued.
When Trump promised that as president -- on "day one" -- he would begin to dismantle Obamacare, some Republicans, many members of the press and most Democrats laughed at him. They are laughing no longer because the first executive order he signed on Jan. 20 directed those in the federal government who enforce Obamacare to do so expecting that it will soon not exist.
He ordered that regulations already in place be enforced with a softer, more beneficent tone, and he ordered that no penalty, fine, setoff or tax be imposed by the IRS on any person or entity who is not complying with the individual mandate, because by the time taxes are due on April 15, the IRS will be without authority to impose or collect the non-tax tax, as the individual mandate will no longer exist. Why take money from people that will soon be returned?
Then he ordered a truly revolutionary act, the likes of which I have never seen in the 45 years I have studied and monitored the government's laws and its administration of them. He ordered that when bureaucrats who are administering and enforcing the law have discretion with respect to the time, place, manner and severity of its enforcement, they should exercise that discretion in favor of individuals and against the government.
This is radical coming from any president in the modern era of government-can-do-no-wrong. It is far more Thomas Jefferson, the small-government champion with whom Trump has never been associated, than it is Theodore Roosevelt, the super-regulator whom Trump has stated he admires. It recognizes the primacy and dignity of the individual and the fallibility of the state. It acknowledges the likely demise of Obamacare. It is utterly without precedent since Jefferson's presidency.
Trump's revolutionary act is a breeze of freedom on a sea of regulation. It recognizes something modern governments never admit -- that they can be and have been wrong. It is exactly as Trump promised.
------------- Andrew Napolitano (@judgenap) was a New Jersey Superior Court Judge and a visiting professor at Brooklyn Law School, an author of several books and Senior Judicial Analyst for Fox News Channel. Tags:Donald Trump, Revolutionary, Donald Trump, Revolutionary, Andrew NapolitanoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Miami-Dade Mayor Reverses County's Status as Sanctuary City
Screenshot via below video
by Debra Heine: While most mayors of cities with "sanctuary" policies have remained defiant of President Donald Trump’s executive order aimed at punishing local governments that don’t comply with federal immigration laws, the mayor of Miami-Dade County, Florida, is the exception.
On Thursday, Mayor Carlos Gimenez ordered county jails to comply with Trump's federal immigration detention requests, effectively reversing the county’s unofficial status as a “sanctuary city” for illegal immigrants.
Via the Miami Herald: Gimenez cited an executive order signed Wednesday by President Donald Trump that threatened to cut federal grants for any counties or cities that don’t cooperate fully with Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Since 2013, Miami-Dade has refused to indefinitely detain inmates who are in the country illegally and wanted by ICE -- not based on principle, but because the federal government doesn’t fully reimburse the county for the expense.
“In light of the provisions of the Executive Order, I direct you and your staff to honor all immigration detainer requests received from the Department of Homeland Security,” Gimenez wrote Daniel Junior, the interim director of the corrections and rehabilitation department, in a brief, three-paragraph memo to the interim head of the corrections and rehabilitation department, as reported by the Miami Herald.Gimenez, a Republican, added:Miami-Dade County complies with federal law and intends to fully cooperate with the federal government. ... I will partner with the Board of County Commissioners to address any issues necessary to achieve this end.Thursday evening, a very pleased President Trump posted his response on Twitter:
Gimenez also looked to quell fears that Miami-Dade police will start rounding up illegal immigrants as a result of the policy change: Our officers are not immigration officers. Every once in a while we will arrest an illegal immigrant for a crime -- like anybody else.
--------------- Debra Heine is a Catholic, mom of six and long time political pundit. She has written for PJ Media Tags:Debra Heine, PJ Media, Miami-Dade Mayor, Reverses, County's Status, Sanctuary City, complies with lawTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
March For Life, Pence Praises Pro-Life Movement, Pro-Life America
VP Mike Pence
2017 March to Life
by Gary Bauer, Contributing Author: March For Life - Today hundreds of thousands of people came to Washington, D.C., to stand for the sanctity of life. No cars were burned. No windows were smashed. No garbage was burned in the streets. No innocent bystanders were assaulted by the marchers. No police officers were sent to the hospital.
This was a peaceful demonstration led by men and women of faith who are here to defend innocent human life. The annual March for Life is always one of the highlights of the year.
This march has faithfully taken place every year since the Supreme Court's tragic Roe v. Wade decision was announced in 1973.
Some people might think the issue would fade and go away. After all, the Supreme Court "settled" it 44 years ago. But this issue won't go away. It is fundamental to defining the values of our country.
Our Founding Fathers boldly stated in the Declaration of Independence that we were endowed with the inalienable right to life. That right comes from God, not from any government or court.
We fought a brutal civil war to end the scourge of slavery and uphold the dignity of life. But Roe v. Wade is based upon the same flawed premise as Dred Scott and slavery -- that some humans are not "people" with rights we are obligated to respect. The Supreme Court was wrong in Dred Scott and it was wrong in Roe too.
And because men and women, young and old, still march year after year, I know the day will come when Roe v. Wade will be seen for the travesty it is. I know the day is coming when every innocent child will be welcomed into the world and protected by the law.
This Year Is Different - I am pleased to say that this year's march is very different, especially from more recent marches. Even in previous Republican administrations, pro-life advocates had to lobby to get White House leadership involved in the March for Life.
I don't think that any lobbying was required this time. Early on it was announced that senior advisor Kellyanne Conway would speak. Vice President Mike Pence attended today's march -- a historic first.
I know Mike Pence. He has been unambiguously pro-life his entire career. It would be unimaginable in his own mind to avoid the pro-life movement now that he is vice president of the United States.
Last night, Vice President Pence held a reception for pro-life leaders. (I was invited to attend, but regrettably was traveling back to Washington from Texas.) In addition, President Trump called out the media for not covering the march.
At a press conference Monday, Press Secretary Sean Spicer said that President Trump is "going to stand up and value life -- born or unborn. . . he's going to stand up and protect life, promote it, and instill policies that promote life [and] promote adoption."
My point is this: The pro-life movement has real friends and true champions in this administration.
I understand that the life issue doesn't necessarily move every conservative. But conservatives should be excited about what we have seen in the past week. When this White House takes a position, whatever the issue, it goes all in. It wants to move public opinion.
That "fight" is what has been missing for so long! Governing is not about sticking your finger in the wind. It is about changing the direction of our country.
Pence Praises Pro-life Movement - Vice President Mike Pence became the first vice president of the United States to address the March for Life in person. He expressed what an honor it was for him to be there, and he told the crowd, "President Trump actually asked me to be here with you today. He asked me to thank you for your support, your stand for life and your compassion for the women and children of America."
The vice president praised the marchers, telling them that because of their compassion and commitment, "life is winning again in America." (See next item.) He also reassured the marchers that President Trump would continue keeping his promises to the pro-life community. Here is an excerpt of his remarks:"From his first day in office, [President Trump] has been keeping his promises to the American people. That's why on Monday President Trump reinstated the Mexico City Policy. That's why this administration will work with the Congress to end taxpayer funding of abortion and abortion providers. . . And that's why next week, President Donald Trump will announce a Supreme Court nominee who will uphold the God-given rights enshrined in our Constitution in the tradition of the late, great Antonin Scalia. . .
"Be assured, along with you, we will not grow weary. We will not rest until we restore a culture of life in America, for ourselves and for our posterity."Pro-Life America - A Marist poll released this week found strong support for significant pro-life initiatives. For example:
Only 16% of Americans support abortion on demand at any time in all nine months of pregnancy, which is essentially the current law of the land under Roe v. Wade.
59% of Americans support banning late-term abortions, those performed after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
60% of Americans do not believe that medical professionals should be forced to perform abortions if they have moral objections to the procedure.
61% of Americans oppose using taxpayer money to pay for abortions in the United States.
74% of Americans support serious limits on abortion, including 54% of those who identify as "pro-choice."
83% of Americans oppose using taxpayer money to pay for abortions overseas.
Personal Note - These poll results are certainly encouraging. But as Vice President Pence said today, it didn't just happen. From parents and pastors to volunteers at pregnancy centers and campaigns, it takes tremendous effort by many dedicated people working in a variety of ways. And this work must continue!
I can't tell you how excited I am about the opportunities we have going forward. But we know the battle is far from over. The challenges are enormous. The stakes couldn't be greater, and the left has never been more desperate.
On this symbolic day, I pray you will rededicate yourself to the cause of life. There is no better way to make America great again than fulfilling the promise of our Declaration of Independence and restoring the right to life.
---------------- Gary Bauer is a conservative family values advocate and serves as president of American Values and chairman of the Campaign for Working Families Tags:Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families, March For Life, Pence Praises Pro-Life Movement, Pro-Life AmericaTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
by Daniel Greenfield: This ought to be filed under "Least surprising political developments in human history". Both the White House and Congress have made it clear that they are winding down and getting rid of ObamaCare. They have no incentive to throw more good money after bad on a failed program that everyone hates.
President Trump is already shaking things up. Why would anyone imagine that he wouldn't cut spending to advertise a program he ran against? The Trump administration has pulled the plug on all Obamacare outreach and advertising in the crucial final days of the 2017 enrollment season, according to sources at Health and Human Services and on Capitol Hill.
Even ads that had already been placed and paid for have been pulled, the sources told POLITICO.
The decision sends the clearest signal yet that President Donald Trump is determined to fulfill his campaign pledge to repeal Obamacare. Hours after being sworn in, Trump issued his first executive order allowing federal officials to start unwinding parts of the law.
It is also halting all media outreach designed to spur signups in the days leading up to the deadline. Emails are no longer being sent out to individuals who visited HealthCare.gov, the enrollment website, to encourage them to finish signing up.But it wouldn't be a Trump story without irrational victimhood tantrums.Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA, a consumer group that supports the law, called the decision "a mean-spirited effort that can only result in fewer people getting coverage who need it."Has anyone in this country not heard of ObamaCare? If so, which underground bunker were they living in? If you have to do this much of a hard sell for ObamaCare, maybe that's because no one wants it?
-------------- Daniel Greenfield is Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. David Horowitz is a Contributing Author of the ARRA News Service Tags:Daniel Greenfield, FrontPage Mag, White House, Kills, Obamacare AdsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Tags:Editorial Cartoon, AF Branco, President, Donald Trump, The Energizer, Keeps Going and Going, Chuck Schumer, democrats, obstruction To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
by Patrick Buchanan: “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,” wrote poet Robert Frost in the opening line of “Mending Walls.”
And on the American left there is something like revulsion at the idea of the “beautiful wall” President Trump intends to build along the 1,900-mile border between the U.S. and Mexico.
The opposition’s arguments are usually rooted in economics or practicality. The wall is unnecessary. It will not stop people from coming illegally. It costs too much.
Yet something deeper is afoot here. The idea of a permanent barrier between our countries goes to the heart of the divide between our two Americas on the most fundamental of questions.
Who are we? What is a nation? What does America stand for?
Those desperate to see the wall built, illegal immigration halted, and those here illegally deported, see the country they grew up in as dying, disappearing, with something strange and foreign taking its place.
It is not only that illegal migrants take jobs from Americans, that they commit crimes, or that so many require subsidized food, welfare, housing, education and health care. It is that they are changing our country. They are changing who we are.
Two decades ago, the Old Right and the neocons engaged in a ferocious debate over what America was and is.
Were we from the beginning a new, unique, separate and identifiable people like the British, French and Germans?
Or was America a new kind of nation, an ideological nation, an invented nation, united by an acceptance of the ideas and ideals of Jefferson, Madison, Lincoln and Dr. King?
The Old Right contended that America existed even before the Revolution, and that this new nation, this new people, wrote its own birth certificate, the Constitution. Before Washington, Madison and Hamilton ever went to Philadelphia, America existed.
What forced the premature birth of the nation — was the Revolution.
We did not become a new nation because we embraced Jefferson’s notion about all men being “created equal.” We became a new people from our familial break with the Mother Country, described in the declaration as a severing of ties with our “brethren” across the sea who no longer deserved our loyalty or love.
The United States came into being in 1789. The Constitution created the government, the state. But the country already existed.
When the Irish came in the mid-19th century to escape the famine and the Germans to escape Bismarck’s Prussia, and the Italians, Jews, Poles, Greeks, Slovaks came to Ellis Island, they were foreigners who became citizens, and then, after a time, Americans.
Not until decades after the Great Migration of 1890-1920, with the common trials of the Depression, World War II and Cold War, were we truly forged again into one united nation and people.
By 1960, almost all of us shared the same heroes and holidays, spoke the same language and cherished the same culture. What those with memories of that America see happening today is the disintegration of our nation of yesterday. The savagery of our politics, exemplified in the last election, testifies to how Americans are coming to detest one another as much as the Valley Forge generation came to detest the British from whom they broke free.
In 1960, we were a Western Christian country. Ninety percent of our people traced their roots to Europe. Ninety percent bore some connection to the Christian faith. To the tens of millions for whom Trump appeals, what the wall represents is our last chance to preserve that nation and people.
To many on the cosmopolitan left, ethnic or national identity is not only not worth fighting for, it is not even worth preserving. It is a form of atavistic tribalism or racism.
The Trump wall then touches on the great struggle of our age.
Given that 80 percent of all people of color vote Democratic, neither the Trump movement nor the Republican Party can survive the Third Worldization of the United States now written in the cards.
Moreover, with the disintegration of the nation we are seeing, and with talk of the breakup of states like Texas and secession of states like California, how do we survive as one nation and people?
Old Europe never knew mass immigration until the 20th century.
Now, across Europe, center-left and center-right parties are facing massive defections because they are perceived as incapable of coping with the existential threat of the age — the overrunning of the continent from Africa and the Middle East.
President Trump’s wall is a statement to the world: This is our country. We decide who comes here. And we will defend our borders.
The crisis of our time is not that some Americans are saying this, but that so many are too paralyzed to say it, or do not care, or embrace what is happening to their country.
-------------------- Patrick Buchanan is currently a conservative columnist, political analyst, chairman of The American Cause foundation and an editor of The American Conservative. He has been a senior advisor to three Presidents, a two-time candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, and was the presidential nominee of the Reform Party in 2000. He blogs at the Patrick J. Buchanan. Tags:Patrick Buchanan, conservative, commentary, To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Vice President Mike Pence
at 2017 March to Life
ARRA News Service: Vice President Mike Pence addressed the attendees at the March for Life today. He said the pro-life movement will not rest until abortion ends in the United States. Below is a released text of his message. Thank you Karen and Charlotte, and thank all of you on behalf of Pres. Donald Trump, my wife Karen, and my daughter Charlotte.
I’d like to welcome you all to Washington DC for the 44th annual March for life. It’s a good day. It’s the best day I’ve ever seen for the March for life, in more ways than one.
I’m deeply humbled to stand before you today. I’m deeply humbled to be the first vice president of the United States to ever have the privilege to attend this historic event.
More than 240 years ago, our founders wrote words that have echoed through the ages.
They declared these truths to be self-evident that we are, all of us, endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights, and that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
44 years ago, our Supreme Court turned away from the first of these timeless ideals.
But today, three generations hence, because of all of you, and the many thousands that stand with us in marches like this all across the nation, life is winning again in America.
That is evident in the election of pro-life majorities and the Congress of the United States of America. But it is no more evident, in any way, than in the historic election of a president who stands for a stronger America, a more prosperous America, and a president who, I proudly say, stands for the right to life – President Donald Trump.
President Trump actually asked me to be here with you today. He asked me to thank you for your support, for your stand for life, and for your compassion for the women and children of America.
One week ago today on the steps of the Capitol we saw the inauguration of the 45th President of the United States. I can tell you firsthand, our president is a man with broad shoulders and a big heart. His vision, his energy, his optimism are boundless and I know that he will make America great again.
From his first day in office he’s been keeping his promises to the American people.
I like to say that over there at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., we are in the promise-keeping business.
That’s why on Monday, President Trump reinstated the Mexico City Policy to prevent foreign aid from funding organizations that promote or perform abortions worldwide.
That’s why this administration will work with the Congress to end taxpayer funding of abortion and of abortion providers, and we will devote those resources to healthcare services for women across America.
And that’s why next week, President Donald Trump will announce a Supreme Court nominee who will uphold the God-given liberties enshrined in our Constitution in the tradition of the late and great Justice Antonin Scalia.
You know, life is winning in America. And today is a celebration of that progress that we have made in this cause.
You know I’ve long believed that a society can be judged by how we care for its most vulnerable, the aged, the infirm, the disabled, and the unborn.
We have come to an historic moment in the cause for life. And we must meet this moment with respect and compassion for every American.
Life is winning in America for many reasons.
Life is winning through the steady advance of science that illuminates when life begins, more and more, every day.
Life is winning through the generosity of millions of adoptive families to open their hearts and homes to children in need. Life is winning through the compassion of caregivers and volunteers at crisis pregnancy centers and faith-based organizations who minister to women in towns across this country.
And life is winning through the quiet counsels between mothers and daughters, grandmothers and granddaughters, between friends across kitchen tables, and over coffee at college campuses. The truth is being told. Compassion is overcoming convenience. And hope is defeating despair.
In a word, life is winning in America because of all of you.
So I urge you to press on. But as it is written, ‘Let your gentleness be evident to all.’ Let this movement be known for love, not anger. Let this movement be known for compassion, not confrontation. When it comes to matters of the heart, there is nothing stronger than gentleness.
I believe that we will continue to win the hearts and minds of the rising generation if our hearts first break for young mothers and their unborn children, and if we each of us do all we can to meet them where they are, with generosity, not judgment.
To heal our land and restore a culture of life we must continue to be a movement that embraces all, cares for all, and shows respect for the dignity and worth of every person.
Enshrined on the walls of the Jefferson Memorial are the words of our third president, who admonished us, so long ago, to remember that God gave us life and gave us liberty.
On behalf of the President of the United States and my little family we thank you for your stand for life. We thank you for your compassion. We thank you for your love for the women and children of America.
And be assured, be assured, that along with you, we will not grow wearied, we will not rest until we restore a culture of life in America for ourselves and our posterity. Thank you and God bless you.
And God bless the United States of America.
-------------- Tags:March for Life, 2017, Vice President, Mike Pence, video, FoxNewsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson Signs Bill to Ban Dismemberment Abortions
by Micaiah Bilger, LifeNews: Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson signed into law on Thursday a bill to protect unborn babies from brutal dismemberment abortions.
Hutchinson signed the bill, the Arkansas Unborn Child Protection From Dismemberment Abortion Act, less than a day after the state Senate passed it with strong support, KTHV News 11 reports.
Arkansas House Bill 1032 prohibits dismemberment, or dilation and evaluation (D&E), abortions, a common second-trimester abortion procedure. Exceptions would be allowed in rare cases where there is a serious risk to the woman’s health, KFSM News 5 reports. Doctors who violate the measure could be held liable; however, women would not be punished, the report states.
A dismemberment abortion typically is performed on a nearly fully-formed, living unborn baby in the second trimester. It is a barbaric and dangerous procedure in which the unborn child is ripped apart in the womb and pulled out in pieces.
According to the Arkansas Department of Health, 683 of the 3,771 abortions performed in 2015 were D&E, or dismemberment abortions.
“Dismemberment abortion … [is a] gruesome, barbaric procedure. It is one that no civilized society should embrace,” said State Rep. Andy Mayberry, R-Hensley, earlier this week, according to Arkansas Online.
In a previous statement, Hutchinson said, “I have read the bill and it provides safeguards that are important, including an exception for circumstances that put the health of the mother in serious risk, and it assures that there is no penalty on the mother.”
He said he believes the law is constitutional and would be upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court, if challenged, Reuters reports.
The American Civil Liberties Union leaders quickly promised a lawsuit on Thursday to challenge the new law.
“The law puts an undue burden on a woman’s constitutional right to obtain a second-trimester abortion, and I think the legislature knows it and doesn’t care,” ACLU Arkansas attorney Rita Sklar said.
The dismemberment abortion ban embodies model legislation from the National Right to Life Committee that would prohibit “dismemberment abortion,” using forceps, clamps, scissors or similar instruments on a living unborn baby to remove him or her from the womb in pieces. Such instruments are used in dilation and evacuation procedures.
Dismemberment abortion bans also have been voted into law in Kansas, Oklahoma, West Virginia, Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana. Mississippi and West Virginia have their laws in effect, while the other states are battling legal challenges.
The Arkansas law is scheduled to go into effect this summer. Tags:Arkansas Governor, Asa Hutchinson, Signs Bill, Bans. Dismemberment AbortionsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
by Kerby Anderson, Contributing Author: Children spend an enormous amount of their day with electronic media. That is what a recent survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation was able to document.
When you add together time spent with television, cell phones, video games, and computers; it essentially becomes a full-time job of more than 53 hours. Needless to say, this is a dramatic increase from over a decade ago. And nearly twice as many now say that they do at least two of these at the same time.
The findings of the survey of over 2,000 young people ages 8 to 18 found that their digital day lasted more than seven hours a day. The primary media inputs were television and music. But substantial amounts of time were also spent on the computer and playing video games.
Although time spent with electronic media is increasing, the researchers did find one area that was decreasing: ink. Daily book readership remained somewhat steady (probably because schools still require them to read books), but reading a magazine dropped 20 percent and reading a newspaper dropped nearly 20 percent.
The survey had a few surprises. For example, the greatest consumers of electronic media were African-American and Hispanic kids who spend nearly one-third more time each day with electronics that white kids. And heavy media users aren’t necessarily couch potatoes. They actually find ways to cram more physical exercise into their lives than light users. While that may be true, I still believe that almost all young people spend too much time with electronic media.
For the last two decades I have been talking about the media storm that surrounds our children and grandchildren. This latest survey of our kids’ digital day shows that they are in the midst of a greater storm than we ever imagined. This should concern parents and educators.
----------- Kerby Anderson is a radio talk show host heard on numerous stations via the Point of View Network endorsed by Dr. Bill Smith, Editor, ARRA News Service Tags:Kerby Anderson, Viewpoints, Point of View, Child’s Digital DayTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
by Paul Jacob, Contributing Author: A friend, who loves to talk football, sometimes boasts that his team "crushed" the other team, gaining more yards and rolling up more first downs, before dejectedly acknowledging that his team didn't score as many points as its opponent. They lost.
When a Democrat gloats that Donald Trump lost the popular vote, I am reminded of my friend's funny football foible.
It helps to gain yards in football, sure, just as it helps to gain votes in a presidential contest. But you win a game by putting the most points on the scoreboard, just as you're elected president by winning a majority in the Electoral College.
Going forward, we can discuss whether a state's votes should be awarded proportionally or winner-take-all and whether national popular vote should instead be the metric for victory. But the 2016 rules were the rules.
"I would've won the popular vote if I was campaigning for the popular vote," President Trump told ABC News anchor David Muir this week. "I would've gone to California, where I didn't go at all."
Still, Mr. Trump should appreciate that not only didn't he garner a majority, he lost by 3 million votes to Hillary Clinton, who was well short of a majority, herself.
Trump continues to claim "a massive landslide" in the Electoral College. He may have "shocked the world," but in 58 presidential elections thus far, 45 winners gained a greater percentage in the Electoral College.
Again this week, Pres. Trump repeated his belief that "millions of illegal votes" prevented him from winning the popular vote. Specific evidence? None. But he wants an investigation.
This could be a long four years.
This is Common Sense. I'm Paul Jacob.
------------------ Paul Jacobs is author of Common Sense which provides daily commentary about the issues impacting America and about the citizens who are doing something about them. He is also President of the Liberty Initiative Fund (LIFe) as well as Citizens in Charge Foundation. Jacobs is a contributing author on the ARRA News Service. Tags:Paul Jacob, Common Sense, Trumping Popular Vote?, President Donald TrumpTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
U.S Reps Hill & Lawrence to Lead House Skilled Workforce Caucus
Rep. French Hill and Rep. Benda Lawrence
ARRA News Service: For the second consecutive Congress, Congressman French Hill (R-AR-02) and Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence (D-MI-14) will co-chair the 115th Congressional Skilled American Workforce Caucus. Over the past two years, Congressman Hill and Congresswoman Lawrence have been actively engaged in promoting the need for increased skilled workforce training.
In the 114th Congress, the caucus hosted multiple roundtable discussions and traveled to Arkansas and Michigan to meet with local issue experts and stakeholders to discuss federal participation in skilled workforce policy. The caucus plans to expand its outreach with other members and increase the number of site visits in the coming two years.
Congressman Hill, Congresswoman Lawrence, Arkansas State Senator Jane English (34th District), Vice President for University Relations at Arkansas State University Shane Broadway, and CEO & President of Focus: HOPE Jason Lee released the below statements:
“I am excited to build off the good bipartisan work that Congresswoman Lawrence and I did together in the previous Congress on skilled workforce issues. Finding ways to get more of our colleagues involved will be a critical mission of the caucus this year. As Congress focuses on good policies to increase economic growth, I am optimistic that the work of our Caucus will play an important role in getting people back to work.” – Congressman French Hill
“America was built on manufacturing and labor. I am excited to be a part of this much needed movement to boost our economy into the future as we transition our manufacturing through new technology and skilled trade. I am glad to join Congressman Hill as we provide leadership and continue to promote skilled trade opportunities in the American workforce. Skilled trade is a lifeline of the American workforce and is directly connected to the future of this country. We must come together as members of Congress to educate, train and promote our workforce for a better future.” – Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence
“I am so pleased that Congressman Hill and Congresswoman Lawrence will be reestablishing the Congressional Skilled American Workforce Caucus in the House. Ensuring the opportunity for all of our citizens to have the education and skills necessary to compete for the growing number of skilled jobs is a priority Congressman Hill, Congresswoman Lawrence, and I all share. I appreciate the willingness of Congressman Hill to partner with the Arkansas state legislature on workforce issues.” – Senator Jane English
"We appreciate the leadership and vision of Congressman Hill and Congresswoman Lawrence for focusing their efforts to bring awareness and develop policy to show parents and students the opportunities that exist today and in the future, that technical training can provide. We were honored to host both of them at ASU-Beebe to showcase our highly successful John Deere Agriculture Technology Program that shows how institutions and industry can partner together to provide the workforce that is so desperately needed." – Shane Broadway
“Focus: HOPE deeply appreciates and commends the work of Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence, and her colleague, Congressman French Hill, for their efforts to ensure the production of a skilled workforce in communities across the United States. Their work is critical to the economic revitalization of urban centers like Detroit, which have been devastated by job losses and inadequate workforce training. We look forward to working with both of them on these extremely important activities of the caucus.” – Jason Lee Tags:U.S. Representatives, French Hill, R-AR, Brenda Lawrence, D-MI, Lead, House Skilled Worforce CaucusTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Little Rock WWII Veteran Wallace Cunningham Saluted
ARRA News Service: U.S. Senator John Boozman (AR) recognized the service and sacrifice of WWII veteran Wallace Cunningham in ‘Salute to Veterans,’ a series recognizing the military service of Arkansans.
Wallace, a lifelong Little Rock resident, remembers listening to President Franklin Roosevelt’s “Day of Infamy” speech the day after the Pearl Harbor attack with his high school classmates.
“We knew then that a lot of us would be going to the service,” Wallace said.
After high school graduation, Wallace worked at a local bank before enlisting in the Army Air Corps on his 18th birthday.
“I had my mother take me to a notary public down the street. He swore me in service at that time,” Wallace said.
Nine days later Wallace said he was headed to work and decided to get his enlistment physical. “I never did get to go to work. I finished my physical, they shipped me to Camp Robinson. I didn’t get back to work until three years later.”
After completing basic training at Keesler Air Base, Mississippi, Wallace continued his military education in Los Angeles in clerical school, becoming a technical supply clerk.
Wallace wanted to serve overseas, so when he was stationed at Kirtland Field, New Mexico he asked for a transfer to a unit getting ready to deploy. It took a lot of persuasion on his part to get his Major to agree, but he was eventually assigned to the 42nd Repair Squadron of the 42nd Air Depot Group.
The unit left for Europe in August of 1943 aboard the British ship Aquitania.
“It being an English ship, our food was English. Most of the time we had mutton to eat. It doesn’t have a real pleasant odor, so as a result, it got unbearable and guys got sick. Fortunately, I never did get sick but I decided that I wouldn’t eat any more mutton so we had chocolates most of the time,” Wallace recalled.
His unit was stationed in Ireland and England. It was in Oxford, one day before the Allied invasion of Normandy that he knew something big was happening.
“That morning you could look in the sky across it all, aircraft from one end of the horizon to the other. It was quite an experience to see them there. Such a vast amount of aircraft in the sky at one time overwhelmed me. I knew something must be going on, but we didn’t know what that was,” Wallace said.
He and his comrades landed on Omaha Beach a few weeks later and began the arduous journey through France that put them in Reims when the war ended.
“I thought that’s quite an experience, being in Reims when the war ended and the armistice was signed” he said.
“Wallace Cunningham is a true American hero whose service and sacrifice defeated tyranny. I am grateful for his dedication to our nation. Wallace’s memories of his military service are an important part of our history and I am honored to share his stories,” Boozman said.
Boozman will submit Cunningham’s entire interview to the Veterans History Project, an initiative of the Library of Congress’s American Folklife Center to collect and retain the oral histories of our nation’s veterans. Tags:WWII, veteran, Wallace Cunningham, saluted, Senator, John Boozman, Library of Congress, To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Jonathan Gruber Once Again Insults the American People
by Debra Heine: It's amazing that ObamaCare architect Jonathan Gruber is still willing to appear in public after being caught insulting the American peopleover and over again in appearances after the unpopular law was shoved down Americans' throats.
Gruber, an MIT professor of economics, famously cited the “lack of transparency" in crafting and selling ObamaCare as "a huge political advantage," and credited "the stupidity of the American voter" as being "really really critical for the thing to pass.”
In another appearance, Gruber said, “American voters are too stupid to understand the difference” of the language of the ObamaCare legislation. In yet another appearance he bragged that one aspect of the law --- the Cadillac tax -- "was a very clever, you know, basic exploitation of the lack of economic understanding of the American voter.”
Gruber was asked to comment on the disastrous rollout of Obamacare during an interview in 2013. In another insult to the intelligence of the American voter, he said that going forward, “the short attention span of the American public” would work to the president’s advantage. “A year from now when the law’s working, it will be long forgotten,” the arrogant elitist insisted.
Fast forward a few more years to last night on "Tucker Carlson Tonight," where Gruber said ObamaCare is working "as designed" and has benefited millions of people, arguing that the only reason it remains unpopular is because "Americans just don't understand what this law has done for them."
Carlson thanked Gruber for his honesty.
--------------- Debra Heine is a Catholic, mom of six and long time political pundit. She has written for PJ Media and several blogs including her own, Nice Deb! Tags:Debra Heine, PJ Media, ObamaCare, architect, Jonathan Gruber, Once Again, Insults,American PeopleTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
by Cliff Kincaid: In his blockbuster new film, "Civil War 2017," Trevor Loudon asks why the political left is so determined to destroy the Trump presidency. Matthew Vadum of the Capital Research Center responds that Trump "doesn't back down from a fight," unlike previous "squishy" Republicans. What's more, Trump has upended the "progressive coalition" by convincing millions of Democrats to abandon their union leaders and the Democratic Party.
Marxism is at a crossroads. And so are its adherents in the media, such as Van Jones of CNN. Jones is smart enough to know that Trump has tapped into the anger and discontent of American workers. But at the same time, Jones is compelled to rally what remains of the progressive coalition against Trump. That is why he spoke at the "Women's March on Washington" on Saturday, and then went on CNN to comment on what he said.
You may have missed the highlights. It featured filthy language, transgenderism, the benefits of killing the unborn, rights for illegal aliens, and pure unadulterated communism.
By way of background, remember that the workers used to be the cornerstone of the revolution. The phrase "Workers of the world unite" is right from the Communist Manifesto. These workers are now behind Trump. They want jobs, not heroin. They want economic and industrial development in traditional fossil-fuel industries that the Democratic Party has been trying to bankrupt through the climate change hoax and green energy scams.
The demonstration was financed by the abortion industry front known as Planned Parenthood and the environmentalist group called the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). The one union leader who spoke at the demonstration was George Gresham, president of the largest labor union in New York City representing health care workers.
Where were the leaders of the industrial unions? They were nowhere to be found. And that is because many of their members voted for Trump.
The involvement of the NRDC is a reflection of the suicidal tendency that infects the Democratic Party. The NRDC's logo used to be a grizzly bear and later became a polar bear to shift the focus to climate change. This may appeal to liberal elites, but the workers who backed Trump would like to see some compassion for the workers who are losing their jobs to bad trade deals and climate change agreements that deindustrialize the U.S.
The so-called Women's March featured communists like Angela Davis, transgendered people, Muslims, foul-mouthed Hollywood celebrities, and illegal aliens. This group represents the strain of Marxism known as Cultural Marxism. It cannot co-exist with workers who still retain love of country and "cling" to traditional religious values. They don't want to lose their jobs to illegals.
At the Women's March, backed by important members of the Democratic Party, we had an unrepentant communist, Davis, who not only spoke, but served as a co-chair. In our column "Black Power Icon Goes Vegan to Save Animals," we noted how Davis has tried in her career to cover all of the Marxist cultural bases. She started out with the Communist Party, became a lesbian, and now is a spokesman for animal rights. Along the way, she was given the Lenin Peace Prize.
However, the bio of Angela Davis at the demonstration's website makes no mention of her communist affiliations.
At the Women's March, she thanked Obama for commuting the sentences of transgender traitor Bradley/Chelsea Manning and Puerto Rican terrorist Oscar Lopez Rivera. "We celebrate the impending release of Chelsea Manning," she said, "and Oscar Lopez Rivera. But we also say free Leonard Peltier. Free Mumia Abu-Jamal. Free Assata Shakur."
Peltier killed two FBI agents, while Abu-Jamal and Assata Shakur are convicted cop-killers. Shakur fled to Cuba and is living under the protection of that communist regime.
Davis was followed to the podium by Raquel Willis, a self-described queer black transgender feminist woman.
As if the parade of Marxists, sexual oddballs, and misfits was not enough, several Hollywood celebrities and "artists" turned out. The entertainer named Madonna was more extreme than usual and talked about blowing up the White House amid using the F-word. Actress Ashley Judd's "Nasty Woman" routine was filthy, gross, and offensive. The march was definitely not family-friendly.
If you want to understand why the workers are turning on the Democrats, some of the performances at the Women's March will help you understand why.
The media were represented as well. Van Jones, a speaker at the rally, was identified on the march's website as "President of Dream Corps" and a "CNN Commentator."
"Van Jones is a CNN political commentator, regularly appearing across the network's programming and special political coverage," says his own Dream Corps website. "In 2009," the bio says, "Jones worked as the green jobs advisor to President Barack Obama." What it doesn't say is that he was forced out of that job when his communist background was exposed. He had been involved in STORM (Standing Together to Organize a Revolutionary Movement).
Jones' Dream Corps, the latest organization he has created, claims to champion "World-class support for world-changing solutions," whatever that means. Its "partners" include Trinity United Church of Christ. Remember Jeremiah Wright's and Barack Obama's church?
The group also boasts of some heavy hitters as donors, including Facebook, Google, the Ford Foundation, and the Executive Office of the President of the United States.
The latter is significant. Jones lost his White House job only to get funded by the Obama White House. It's interesting the way that worked out.
It is also interesting to note, however, that when you click on the Dream Corps donor logo for the presidential office, you immediately go to the website of President Donald J. Trump. It seems the website has been updated.
It's unlikely that the new administration will be financing Van Jones' latest scheme. But he'll no doubt continue to be on the payroll of CNN, where, among other things, he has done programs on what is called "The Messy Truth." How appropriate.
--------------- Cliff Kincaid is a veteran journalist and media critic and writed for RenewAmerica. Tags:Cliff Kincaid, RenewAmerica, Van Jones, marist, marxism, CNN assault, on Donald TrumpTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
The Left Reacts, Mexico Responds, Is UN Next, Refugee Reform
by Gary Bauer, Contributing Author: The Left Reacts - As expected the left is reacting furiously to yesterday's announcements by President Trump that we are taking control of our borders and enforcing our immigration laws. Just consider this headline from Politico:"Democrats Launch Scorched-earth Strategy Against Trump."
The article goes on to state that Democrats have "settled on a scorched-earth, not-now-not-ever model of opposition. . . Democrats have opted for a hard-line, give-no-quarter posture, a reflection of a seething base that will have it no other way."
My friends, it would have been nice to have been wrong this time. But I have repeatedly warned since the election that the left would not accept Trump's presidency and would do everything it could to delegitimize and destroy him. That is why it is so important that you continue to support our work -- so we can fight back!
Where were these champions of local control last year when the Obama Administration tried to rewrite school bathroom policies coast-to-coast?
Where were these advocates of states' rights when liberal federal judges imposed a radical redefinition of marriage against the will of the voters in 30 states?
During a press conference yesterday, Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser reiterated her plans to ensure that the nation's capital remains a sanctuary city.
"Our message, of course, is always that we want D.C. residents, to not fear calling on their government for help," Bowser said. "When people fear calling on the police for help, it makes the entire city less safe."
I appreciate that the mayor recognizes the importance of public safety. The primary obligation of government is to protect its citizens, Madame Mayor. And the Washington, D.C., region has a major problem with illegal immigrant gangs.
Cities do not have the right to ignore federal law. Moreover, a significant percentage of crime is connected to illegal immigration. And part of Trump's executive order requires the government to be more transparent about that connection.
According to one report, nearly 20,000 illegal immigrants committed roughly 64,000 crimes, including "12,307 drunken driving convictions, 1,728 cases of assault, 216 kidnappings and more than 200 homicide or manslaughter convictions."
The left tolerates this in the name of "compassion." But where is the compassion for the victims? Where is the compassion for hard-working taxpayers?
Mexico Responds - Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto cancelled a planned meeting with President Trump next week, and again vowed that Mexico would never pay for a border wall. Trump shrugged it off, tweeting, "If Mexico is unwilling to pay for the badly needed wall, then it would be better to cancel the upcoming meeting."
President Trump isn't going to delay construction of the wall waiting for Mexico to pay up. But there are plenty of ways to make Mexico pay.
As President Trump has noted, most of Mexico's exports come to the United States. We hold all the cards here, and an import tariff is one way to pay for the wall.
Economist Stephen Moore has suggested a "user fee" as another option. Charge people crossing the border a fee to pay for the wall.
By the way, let's not forget that Congress passed the Secure Fence of 2006, but never fully funded it. For all the hysteria about "Trump's wall," more than two dozen Senate Democrats voted for the Secure Fence Act, including Senate Democrat Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY), as well as then-Senators Barack Obama, Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton.
Here's the bottom line: The status quo is unacceptable, and there are ways to get things done. All that was lacking was the will to act. Thankfully, the voters solved that problem on November 8th!
Is The U.N. Next? The New York Times reports that the Trump Administration may be taking aim at the United Nations, drafting executive orders "to drastically reduce the United States' role in the United Nations and other international organizations."
Among the ideas under consideration: "terminating funding for any United Nations agency" that grants "full membership to the Palestinian Authority or Palestine Liberation Organization, or support programs that fund abortion or any activity that circumvents sanctions against Iran or North Korea." The order also targets organizations that sponsor terrorism or engage in human rights abuses.
The White House is reportedly seeking a major reduction in funding, perhaps as much as 40%, to international organizations which, among other things, "oppose important United States policies."
How long have conservatives railed against foreign aid to international organizations and countries that oppose us? Finally we have a president who is putting America first!
Refugee Reform - There are also reports that the Trump Administration is getting ready to suspend visas from several nations known to be hotbeds of radical Islamic extremism. President Trump also wants to reform our refugee program and institute a process of "extreme vetting."
No doubt the left and its media allies will denounce the move as an example of bigotry. But a disturbing report from the Los Angeles Times explains why this is nothing more than just common sense. Consider this excerpt: "Federal agents are reinvestigating the backgrounds of dozens of Syrian refugees already in the United States after discovering a lapse in vetting that allowed some who had potentially negative information in their files to enter the country. . . At a minimum, the intelligence would have triggered further investigation that could have led some asylum applications to be rejected."Among the cases being reviewed are a refugee who "failed a polygraph test when he applied to work at a U.S. military installation" and another believed to be in contact with an ISIS leader.
---------------- Gary Bauer is a conservative family values advocate and serves as president of American Values and chairman of the Campaign for Working Families Tags:Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families, The Left Reacts, Mexico Responds, Is U.N. Next, Refugee ReformTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Not the schools, per se, but the way we’ve historically set them up as geographically based monopolies where only those with the means to move or pay tuition are able to choose a different option than the one assigned to their neighborhood.
I wouldn’t run my company that way, and I believe families across America deserve better. Not only is our current system unfair, but it’s doing irreparable harm to our economy and our future.
When children, especially those in lower-income families, aren't given the opportunity to receive an excellent education, they find themselves trapped in a failing school with no alternatives. Far too often, they drop out and watch the door to a brighter future slam shut. According to the Alliance for Excellent Education, one in five American students still fails to earn a high school diploma on time.
Unless our schools are able to graduate students at higher rates, nearly 12 million students are likely to drop out over the next decade, resulting in a loss to the nation of $1.5 trillion. We clearly need to shake up the system.
As Milton Friedman once said, “The only solution is to break the monopoly, introduce competition and give the customers alternatives.” Fortunately, Dr. Friedman’s vision for educational choice is slowly becoming a reality, especially in the past decade.
Families in 30 states and the District of Columbia now have some ability to find a schooling option that works for their students instead of shoehorning those students into classrooms that weren’t necessarily designed with their specific needs in mind.
School choice programs are designed to level the playing field so that every child—not just the ones whose families can afford to move or pay tuition—has a chance at a quality education.
We can all agree that government has a vested interest in funding K-12 schooling, but it makes little sense that government should be the sole provider of K-12 schooling, especially when we routinely see non-public and charter schools doing more for students in the classroom with less public funding.
Recent research has shown that school vouchers and tax-credit scholarship programs have actually saved taxpayers more than $3.5 billion since the early 1990s.
As additional educational choice programs come online across the United States, we see the positive effects that a thriving marketplace of ideas and options is having on all school types, including traditional public schools, which have started introducing new programs tailored for students with different learning styles and needs.
Choice hasn’t just been good for non-public, charter and other schooling types; it’s been good for the entire K-12 landscape—and most crucially the students within it.
That’s why it’s so important that we join together to celebrate National School Choice Week. While we are grateful for educational choice throughout the year, this week is set aside to specifically celebrate those families who have been empowered by choice.
We know families don’t want their children wedged into a one-size-fits-all system, and as school choice becomes more widespread, we know there’s no going back. Once you’ve encouraged someone to push beyond the status quo—and made that goal a real possibility—you have awakened the true spirit of the American Dream.
Education is the pathway to success in our country, and it’s clear from decades of national and international results that we’re no longer leading the way. Far too many of our students fall behind or drop out because they’re not in a schooling environment that works for them.
As we push forward expanding the horizon of educational choice, we know there will be criticism from those who would rather preserve the status quo than dream big, innovate and do what’s right for families. But we can also look around this week and throughout the year and see thousands of examples where a student’s entire future has come down to finding the right school.
From online shopping to medical care, we encourage choice in every other aspect of our lives. It’s time to lift up and praise those same options within K-12 education. Tags:Overstock.com, CEO, Patrick Byrne, School Choice, National School Choice Week, 2017, K-12 school system, America is brokenTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
by Robert Romano: In his first 100 hours in office, President Donald Trump appears to have accomplished more for union households and working Americans than former President Barack Obama did in 8 years.
And in the process, he may be shaking up the electoral map in ways that could reshape American politics for decades to come.
With Trump’s rapid actions to withdraw the U.S. from the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade pact, meet with senior private sector labor leaders in the Oval Office and to approve the building Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines — requiring that they built with American steel — the President is signaling strongly to blue collar Americans that he’s their guy.
Still on the horizon are the President’s still to be revealed plans on infrastructure building, something not normally considered a Republican issue, yet it was certainly one on which Trump campaigned heavily.
It was Trump’s working class appeal over vigorous opposition of organized labor leaders that led to his Rust Belt sweep of Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Ohio. Those combined 64 Electoral College votes provided more than his margin of victory.
Trump broke down the Democrats’ seemingly unbreakable Blue Wall by attracting a diverse coalition of conservative and blue collar households.
Now, Trump appears to be building on that victory with policies designed to appeal to those constituencies, earning him plaudits from union leaders that virulently opposed Trump in 2016.
But upon Trump approving the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines overriding the previous Administration’s obstruction, Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa issued a statement praising Trump: “The construction of the K[eystone] XL and Dakota pipelines will help put thousands of Americans, including Teamster members, to work. We are pleased with this decision to move forward on these long overdue projects that will support working families and increase our energy security.”
After his meeting with labor leaders on Jan. 23, including Laborers’ International Union of North America President Terry O’Sullivan, SMART sheet metal workers’ union President Joseph Sellers, United Brotherhood of Carpenters President Doug McCarron and United Association President Mark McManus, Trump earned more plaudits.
“It hit home for the people who have been hurting,” declared the Carpenters’ McCarron.
North America’s Building Trades Unions President Sean McGarvey told reporters was his impression “that the American citizenry and the American Treasury will be invested in building public infrastructure” as Trump touted his plans for public-private partnerships for construction.
Trump also issued an executive order aimed at cutting costs and red tape in federal construction projects by reducing environmental regulatory burdens, giving taxpayers more bang for their bucks and resulting in more jobs because of lower costs. That order stated, “it is the policy of the executive branch to streamline and expedite, in a manner consistent with law, environmental reviews and approvals for all infrastructure projects, especially projects that are a high priority for the Nation, such as improving the U.S. electric grid and telecommunications systems and repairing and upgrading critical port facilities, airports, pipelines, bridges, and highways.”
Again, these are not issues one would normally expect from a Republican president, still, it is easy to see both the political and economic rationale for these policies.
Take the play on mandatory American steel to build the pipelines. To make American steel will mean it will have to be fired by American coal taken out of the ground by American miners. Now, the pipelines might be built at lower cost if foreign materials and labor were used, but Trump is expressly rejecting that, so all of the economic impacts will occur inside the U.S., creating more jobs and fewer Americans underemployed and dependent on government.
Politically, conservatives are getting what they want with the pipelines being built while blue collar union workers and unions will see an immediate impact with increased U.S. production of steel and the jobs created on the projects.
Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning noted the benefits of the arrangement, stating, “Although it does not fit neatly in the traditional limited government view, these policies may be just the political tradeoff that is needed to fully realize the economic potential of these energy pipelines. In a world of give and take, creating North American energy independence is critical to restoring our nation’s economic vibrancy.”
Manning concluded, “It is Trump’s unique ability to bring groups as diverse as Americans for Limited Government and big labor in support of his initiatives. Politically, Trump is simply catering to the base that got him elected through marrying expedited approvals with demands that they benefit U.S. workers. It should not shock anyone that a President who prides himself as a deal maker would engage in a political balancing act that pulls together the diverse coalition which elected him.”
---------------- Robert Romano is the Senior Editor of Americans for Limited Government. His article was first shared on the ALG's NetRight Daily blog. Tags:Robert Romano, Americans For Limited Government, Donald Trump, Big Labor PlayTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
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