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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 (429-347 BC)

Friday, April 30, 2021

Democrats’ Court-Packing Schemes All About Power

by Jarrett Stepman: The Democrats’ plans to pack the Supreme Court appear to be getting serious.

Left-wing proposals to put more justices on the Supreme Court have been floated for years. Now that Democrats have taken power, they’re putting those plans in motion.

A group of powerful congressional Democrats recently unveiled legislation that would expand the Supreme Court from nine to 13 justices.

“The Democratic bill is led by Sen. Ed Markey of Massachusetts and Rep. Jerry Nadler of New York, the chair of the House Judiciary Committee,” reported NBC News. “It is co-sponsored by Reps. Hank Johnson of Georgia and Mondaire Jones of New York.”

If the bill became law, it would be the first time the Supreme Court increased in size since the Civil War era.

In a press conference announcing the bill, Nadler laughingly described the court-packing scheme in distinctly Orwellian terms.Rep. Nadler on his bill to expand the Supreme Court: "As our country has grown, so should the Supreme Court. 13 justices for 13 circuits is a logical progression…and to rectify the great injustice that was done in packing the court." https://t.co/Z1gC6BePs8 pic.twitter.com/sb0gJGEFMA

— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) April 15, 2021
“We are not packing the Supreme Court, we are unpacking it,” Nadler said.

Was he grinning under that COVID-19 mask?

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said that she wouldn’t bring the legislation up to vote, but such a scheme may have support coming from the White White.

President Joe Biden is taking his own crack at court-packing too.

During his presidential campaign, Biden mentioned during a “60 Minutes” interview that he might create a commission to look at expanding the size of the Supreme Court, but he was extremely vague about what he actually wanted from it.

When pressed about what he intended to do, Biden essentially said that you’d have to elect him to find out what’s in the plan.

Now it has become clear that the Biden administration is at least putting the idea on the table.

In early April, Biden signed an executive order creating a commission that would look at a way to “reform” the Supreme Court. Unsurprisingly, it’s filled with scholars who’ve advocated court-packing.

It’s hard not to see the Biden commission, along with the legislative push from powerful members of Congress, as not a serious threat to the high court’s independence.

It’s important to note that the court-packers have failed to really explain why it would be better to have more Supreme Court justices.

Nadler argued that Senate Republicans have “packed” the courts in recent years—as in they’ve filled vacancies on federal courts, an entirely normal part of the American political process for the party that controls the White House and Senate. The New York Democrat also said the Supreme Court must grow as the country has grown, but this is an odd way to talk about courts.

Quite importantly, the courts are not meant to be representative bodies beholden to constituents. They exist to interpret laws passed by legislatures.

Intentionally or not, Nadler exposed what’s fundamentally wrong with the court-packing plans. They in effect would treat courts as if they are just another legislative body.

Nadler, that master of incisive argumentation, said at the press conference that court-packing, er, unpacking, is needed to “restore balance to the nation’s highest court after four years of norm-breaking actions by Republicans led to its current composition.”

What this means is that Democrats have lost some elections and failed to get Supreme Court justices nominated and confirmed by the Senate.

In order to restore “norms,” meaning Democrats’ power over institutions, Nadler and the unpacking crew intend to shatter the long-standing norm of limiting the Supreme Court to nine justices to make sure Democrats can get decisions they want on the court.

And that’s what this effort is really about. From the Biden commission to the legislative plan to pack the Supreme Court, it is all too apparent that this is just a method of getting decisions they like.

That’s the case whether Democrats succeed in packing the Supreme Court or not. The plan at least operates as a threat to those currently on the court that if the justices stand athwart democracy, or the Democrat Party, in upcoming decisions, the politicians might just put a few more justices on the bench who will make the decisions they want.

In many ways, what’s happening mirrors the court-packing schemes of President Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1930s. FDR threatened to put more justices on the high court in response to the current justices’ striking down some of his New Deal programs.

Despite overwhelming Democrat majorities in both the House and the Senate at the time, Congress overwhelmingly rejected the Democrat president’s call to put more justices on the Supreme Court.

As Thomas Jipping, a legal expert at The Heritage Foundation, noted, today’s court-packing scheme is being carried out with a motive similar to FDR’s: Push the court to carry out the favored political agenda.

It seems Democrats in Congress are a little less hesitant to threaten the structure of the Supreme Court than they were in the 1930s.

And this goes to what we’ve seen from Democrats and the left in general since Biden took office. It seems their agenda mostly revolves around securing power rather than promoting a specific program.

From court-packing, to HR 1 election “reforms” that would nationalize and damage our electoral process, to granting statehood to Washington, D.C., this all seems to be following the same script.

Most of what we’ve seen so far from the left since it amassed a narrow margin of national political power in the November election has been a series of steps meant to increase and make that power permanent.

It’s natural for political parties to seek greater power and ability to make policies conform to their agenda. But what makes this so concerning is how Democrats are attempting to change the rules of the political system simply to serve their cause.

Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, who was nominated by President Bill Clinton, a Democrat, condemned this path. In a speech at Harvard, he said our courts rely on the public’s belief that “the court is guided by legal principle, not politics.”

It appears that the modern left simply doesn’t care.

The attempt to pack the Supreme Court is the most brazen and obvious effort to do this. It certainly may lead to short-term “gains” for the left, but the end result would be that the Supreme Court and other federal courts are subject to constant packing as the political parties take and lose power.

Congress already has relinquished much of the legislative burden to independent executive and legislative agencies. It would be shameful and destructive to heap more of this inappropriate role on the courts too.

Carrying on in this way will damage the efficacy of the republic and tear away safeguards to our liberty.

That may be the point. But Americans who still believe in preserving even a shred of our constitutional system should be contemptuous of those making such a naked power grab.
-------------------------------------
Jarrett Stepman is a contributor to The Daily Signal.
Tags: Jarrett Stepman, Democrats’ Court-Packing, Schemes All About Power To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Biden's Anti-Vax Ad, Build Government Bigger, Biden's Amnesty Address

Gary Bauer
by Gary Bauer: Biden's Anti-Vax Ad
I don't know about you, but I thought President Biden's speech last night was scary. To begin with, the optics were terrible. His address to an almost empty chamber looked like an hour-long anti-vaccine ad.

Normally, 1,600 people squeeze into the House chamber during a State of the Union address. That might be excessive given current circumstances. But why was the number cut by nearly 90%?

Why were so few members of Congress allowed to attend when they were among the very first given access to the vaccines four months ago? Why were they forced to sit so far apart, and still forced to wear masks?

If the vaccines work, all those absurd theatrics were totally unnecessary. If they want the American people to get vaccinated, then start allowing us to return to normal. That is the whole point, after all!

Build Government Bigger
Biden's calm demeanor disguised a radical agenda that was more appropriate for socialist Venezuela than the United States. He said nothing about the border crisis, while calling for a massive expansion of government and huge tax increases.

His "build back better" mantra is better described as "build government bigger." Biden proposed $4 trillion in new spending last night. That's on top of the $2 trillion COVID "relief" bill Congress passed last month!

In addition, he made a number of statements that ranged from laughable to ludicrous. There's not enough space to list them all, so here are just two examples.

Biden said, "We must come together to heal the soul of this nation." No one disagrees with that sentiment. But as nice as that sounds, Biden's agenda and the radical left's cultural jihad that he is empowering are creating even more division!

Biden also said that the events of January 6th were "the worst attack on our democracy since the Civil War." Really, Joe? That's just demonstrably untrue.

What about the assassinations of Presidents Abraham Lincoln or John F. Kennedy, and the attempt to kill Ronald Reagan?

Was January 6th a worse attack on our democracy than Pearl Harbor? Was it worse than the 1954 attack by Puerto Rican terrorists who opened fire from the House gallery, wounding five congressmen? Was it worse than 9/11? Of course not!

The rioting and chaos that liberal politicians permitted all last summer was a far greater attack on our democracy. The siege of the White House, in which 60 Secret Service agents were wounded, was a greater attack on our democracy.

But there's an even bigger threat. The intelligence agencies of the United States have been coopted by the left. They used their immense powers meant to stop our foreign enemies against the Trump/Pence campaign.

When that failed, they used a lie to try to bring down his presidency and stop the America First movement. They entrapped members of his administration, and treated them completely differently than they treated Hillary Clinton and Hunter Biden.

America can survive demonstrations on the left and the right. What we can't survive is our institutions being corrupted and used to crush dissenting opinions.

We can't survive elections being stolen. We can't survive a media that is nothing more than a propaganda arm of one party. We can't survive censorship by big corporations.

All these things are ongoing threats to our democracy far surpassing anything that happened on January 6th.

Stand With Me!
As you may know, today is Joe Biden's 100th day in office, and he's taking a victory lap in Georgia.

I hope by now you have had a chance to review our list of Biden's 100 mistakes in his first 100 days. Sadly, he's just getting started.

Help me fight back. Stand with CWF right now!

Biden's Amnesty Address
Predictably, Biden used his address to demand a massive amnesty for illegal aliens, while offering nothing on border security. My friends, we have to think clearly about this issue.

Conservatives have long acknowledged our proud heritage as a nation of immigrants. But the left always tries to shame us over concerns about illegal immigration, and the rule of law gets relegated to an afterthought in the debate.

In previous waves of mass immigration, we did not have a welfare state. Immigrants had to succeed on their own. They did not come here to get free healthcare or to live off the largess of the America taxpayer.

We were also a great "melting pot." We promoted assimilation, and immigrants wanted to become Americans.

What we have now is a witch's brew of open borders, a growing welfare state and radical ideologues hellbent on convincing everyone that America is evil. And the Biden Administration has banned the term "assimilation."

Biden and Harris are saying that the way to solve the immigration problem is to make life better in Central America. But last night, Biden proposed that the federal government will take care of our children from cradle to college.

So, unless Biden and Harris plan to redistribute hundreds of billions of American tax dollars for free pre-school and college in Central America, every person south of the border (or anywhere else in the world) still has a huge incentive to come here.

Not that long ago, many liberals, including Cesar Chavez and Bernie Sanders, understood this obvious fact. The overwhelming majority of Americans still do.

The only answer is what Donald Trump proposed: Secure the border because that is what a serious nation does. Then establish a manageable level of humanitarian immigration for refugees, and a merit-based immigration system for people who will help make our country stronger.

Smearing Scott
While Biden's speech was bad, what happened afterwards was, in many ways, even worse.

Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina delivered the Republican response. Scott comes from humble beginnings. He's an outstanding Christian man, a strong conservative, and he presented the commonsense alternative to Biden's socialist agenda.

If you missed Scott's speech last night, I encourage you to watch it now. A presidential address before Congress is one of the hardest acts to follow. Scott knocked it out of the park!

In stark contrast to Biden's radical agenda, rammed through on a purely partisan basis, Scott suggested that we could find common ground around commonsense solutions. But many liberals lost their minds hearing a black man articulate conservative ideas.

The left really went nuts when Scott proudly defended America, declaring that we are not a racist country. Scott went even further by condemning critical race theory, and the scandal of teaching our children that if their skin happens to be white then they are inherently oppressors.

One of the worst insults you can level against a black American man is to call him an "Uncle Tom." The phrase means that the individual acts too submissively to white people.

In recent years, that slur has been hurled at any black individual who expresses conservative ideas, who is pro-life, patriotic or pro-police. The left did it to Justice Clarence Thomas, to Dr. Ben Carson and many others.

Last night, after Sen. Tim Scott's address, "Uncle Tim" began treading on Twitter. Many comments from these so-called "progressives" are too offensive to repeat here.

The conservative movement is always eager to promote minority candidates. Last year, Republicans elected a very diverse slate of conservative women and minorities, including Burgess Owens and Byron Donalds, who were endorsed and supported by CWF.

But the left devotes tremendous resources to smearing and defeating any female and minority Republicans. They do their best to destroy conservative minority candidates, and then attack the GOP for being "too white."

The left claims to stand for diversity. But it can't stand diversity of thought. The intolerant, totalitarian left increasingly demands that everyone must think, speak, act and vote the same way.
-----------------------
Gary Bauer (@GaryLBauer)  is a conservative family values advocate and serves as president of American Values and chairman of the Campaign for Working Families
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The 1890s Called, They Want Their Journalists Back

by Tim Kennedy: The mainstream media has come a long way since its inception. Nonetheless, America’s newsrooms are now back to their old sensationalist ways.

Throughout the early and mid-20th century, we might have given most editors a pass for their misprints, such as the Chicago Tribune’s epic 1948 Election Day blunder.

However, the media environment we face today is a completely different animal, akin more to yellow journalism of the late 19th century.

Reeling from its misfortunes at the onset of Donald Trump’s presidency, the mainstream media began to drift further away from reality. Reporters rebranded their biased commentary as “analysis,” trying to pass off their content as front-page, objective stories.

Reeling from its misfortunes at the onset of Donald Trump’s presidency, the mainstream media began to drift further away from reality. Reporters rebranded their biased commentary as “analysis,” trying to pass off their content as front-page, objective stories.

Four years later, we are witnessing a damaging phenomenon: American’s mainstream media suffers no real consequences for its growing malfeasance. This was on full display following the 2020 presidential election.

I’m old enough to remember when, on Jan. 9, the Washington Post ran the following sensational headline about President Trump’s conversation with Georgia’s top elections investigator: “‘Find the fraud’: Trump pressured a Georgia election investigator in a separate call legal experts say could amount to obstruction.”

Casual onlookers would look and say the Post had found a smoking gun, voiding many of President Trump’s challenges to the 2020 election.

Indeed, just read how Amy Gardner, the author, originally began her story: “President Trump urged Georgia’s lead elections investigator to ‘find the fraud’ in a lengthy December phone call, saying the official would be a ‘national hero,’ according to an individual familiar with the call who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the conversation.”

However, as Hans von Spakovsky, a senior legal fellow at the Heritage Foundation, explained, the Post’s reporting was blatantly false.

Gardner’s unnamed source, later revealed to be Jordan Fuchs, deputy secretary of state of Georgia, inaccurately described President Trump’s conversation with Frances Watson, the lead election investigator. In a correction added on March 11, the Post stated that it “misquoted Trump’s comments on the call … Trump did not tell the investigator to ‘find the fraud’ or say she would be ‘a national hero’ if she did so.”

The beginning of the article was also rewritten.

“President Trump urged Georgia’s lead elections investigator to identify wrongdoing in the state’s vote in a December phone call, saying the official would be praised for doing so,” the updated version read.

In short, what would’ve once been a potentially career–ending scandal for a reporter is now just business as usual.

One could go on with examples.

In the lead up to Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett’s Senate confirmation hearings, Newsweek published this false claim: “How Charismatic Catholic Groups Like Amy Coney Barrett’s People of Praise Inspired ‘The Handmaid’s Tale.’”

The magazine subsequently issued a correction.

“This article’s headline originally stated that People of Praise inspired ‘The Handmaid’s Tale.’ The book’s author, Margaret Atwood, has never specifically mentioned the group as being the inspiration for her work … Newsweek regrets the error.”

Notice a trend? Strike while the iron is hot and worry about the facts later.

Perhaps the most blatant example of the media’s total detachment from reality emerged last week, after the medical examiner’s report on Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick’s death on Jan. 7 was released.

Officer Sicknick was defending the Capitol during the riot on Jan. 6. Initial police reports said that Officer Sicknick was physically injured while responding to the riot before coming back to his office later in the evening, collapsing, and being rushed to hospital, where he eventually “succumbed to his injuries.”

The mainstream media pounced on this narrative. The New York Times ran the following headline on Jan. 8: “He Dreamed of Being a Police Officer, Then Was Killed by a Pro-Trump Mob.”

The Times originally reported that “pro-Trump rioters attacked that citadel of democracy, overpowered Mr. Sicknick, 42, and struck him in the head with a fire extinguisher, according to two law enforcement officials. With a bloody gash in his head, Mr. Sicknick was rushed to the hospital and placed on life support. He died on Thursday evening.”

However, Officer Sicknick did not directly die of blunt force trauma or a chemical irritant, as some alleged. The medical examiner’s report revealed that the officer died of natural causes after suffering a stroke.

As the Wall Street Journal reported, “The office concluded that Mr. Sicknick’s manner of death was natural, adding in an explanation: ‘If death is hastened by an injury, the manner of death is not considered natural.’”

The title of the Times’ original article remains, but the introduction has largely been rewritten over the past few months.

As Newt noted recently, it took the DC medical examiner’s office over three months to determine Officer Sicknick’s cause of death.

“Why did it take over three months to determine how Officer Sicknick died?” Newt asked on Twitter. “This doesn’t make any sense. Only person killed January 6 was an unarmed woman killed by a policeman. Imagine media outcry if she had not been a Trump supporter. The media narrative has now collapsed.”

Furthermore, as Michael Brendan Dougherty observed in a recent National Review article, journalists had reason to be cautious in their reporting from the beginning but nonetheless jumped to conclusions.

“Why did people keep repeating that Sicknick had been bludgeoned to death for so long, despite the fact that there was enough reporting in the first two days after the riots to cast doubts on the story?” he wrote.

Since 2016, the mainstream media has drifted further into its own fantasy world. Decades earlier, when errors occurred, we may have given America’s newsrooms a pass. Today, however, the speedy, free, and open transfer of information through mass communication and social media limits the number of excuses writers have for peddling misinformation.

Words like “supposed” or “alleged” have disappeared from the pages of America’s leading news outlets. They’ve been replaced by hasty generalizations and logical fallacies.

Yellow journalism blossomed in the late 19th century. It has emerged once more.
---------------------------------
“The views expressed in this article by Tim Kennedy do not reflect the views of Newt Gingrich or any person or institution other than the author.”
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American Universities Have Lost Their Prestige

Today’s universities and colleges bear little if any resemblance to postwar higher education.
Victor Davis Hanson
by Victor Davis Hanson
: Nothing is stranger than the contemporary American university.

Not long ago, Americans used to idolize their universities. Indeed, in science, math, engineering, medicine, and business, many of these meritocratic departments and schools remain among the top-ranked in the world.

Top-notch higher education explains much of the current scientific, technological and commercial excellence of the United States.

After World War II — won in part due to superior American scientific research, production, and logistics — a college degree became a prerequisite for a successful career. The GI Bill enabled some 8 million returning vets to go to college. Most graduated to good jobs.

The university from the late 1940s to 1960 was a rich resource of continuing education. It introduced the world’s great literature, from Homer to Tolstoy, to the American middle classes.

But today’s universities and colleges bear little if any resemblance to postwar higher education. Even during the tumultuous 1960s, when campuses were plagued by radical protests and periodic violence, there was still institutionalized free speech. An empirical college curriculum mostly survived the chaos of the ‘60s.

But it is gone now.

Instead, imagine a place where the certification of educational excellence, the Bachelor of Arts degree, is no guarantee that a graduate can speak, write or communicate coherently or think inductively.

Imagine a place that requires applicants to submit high school grade-point averages and standardized test results but doesn’t require its own graduates to pass a basic uniform competency test.

Imagine a place where after an initial trial period, a minority of elite employees receive lifetime job guarantees.

Imagine a place supposedly devoted to equity where only 30 percent of the faculty are privileged enough to be tenure-tracked. The other 70 percent are second-class, categorized as part-time or “contingent” faculty. And they receive a fraction of the compensation per hour of instruction as their more elite counterparts.

Imagine a place that cherishes student interaction and criticism of the “establishment,” yet the ratio of instructors to administrators is about one to one. The money devoted to non-teaching administrative costs is now about equal to the money devoted to classroom instruction.

Imagine a place where “diversity” is the professed institutional ethos, while studies reveal that liberal faculty outnumber their conservative counterparts by over 10 to 1.

Imagine a liberal place where in 2021 race can still be used as a criterion in selecting and rejecting applicants, choosing prospective dorm roommates, organizing segregated dorms, and restricting access to special places on campus.

Imagine a progressive place that once renounced unconstitutional “loyalty oaths” but now rebrands them as “diversity pledges” and requires reeducation and indoctrination training.

Imagine a place with non-taxable endowments that restricts free speech and expression. Nonprofit universities make it impossible for some speakers to lecture, and often suspend constitutionally protected due process for students facing particular allegations.

Imagine a place loudly devoted to income, capital, and marketplace equity measured against the reality that 800 of the largest colleges and universities hold more than $600 billion in endowments. Yet just 20 elite universities account for half that total. And just four — Harvard, Yale, Stanford, and Princeton — account for almost a quarter of all endowment funds.

Imagine a liberal place that has upped its tuition and total costs far beyond the rate of inflation, with its graduates now collectively owing $1.7 trillion in student loan debt. There is little hope that many of these student debtors will ever pay back their obligations, which average more than $30,000 each.

Imagine a place that has institutionalized human rights but welcomes nearly 400,000 students from human rights-violating China — a great many of whom are the offspring of elite Communist Party members who provide a lucrative source of university income.

Imagine a place where faculty and students now selectively change the names of campus streets, centers, and buildings that honored supposedly illiberal, long-dead donors, graduates, and former heroes.

Yet curiously, universities never alter their marquee founding brand names. Were founders or original funders such as Leland Stanford, Elihu Yale, and Lord Jeffery Amherst not as illiberal as Father Junipero Serra, Earl Warren, and Woodrow Wilson, whose names have been canceled on some college campuses?

As long as universities produced highly educated and open-minded graduates at a reasonable cost and kept politics out of the lecture hall, Americans didn’t care much about peculiarities such as tenure, legacy admissions, untaxed endowments, rebellious students, and quirky faculty.

But once they began to charge exorbitantly, educate poorly, politick continuously, indebt millions of people and act hypocritically, universities turned off Americans.

Just as a sermonizing Hollywood grates when it no longer can make good movies, a once-hallowed but now self-righteous university seems hollow when it charges so much for so little.
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Victor Davis Hanson (@VDHanson) is a senior fellow, classicist and historian and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution where many of his articles are found; his focus is classics and military history. He has been a visiting professor at Hillsdale College since 2004. Hanson was awarded the National Humanities Medal in 2007 by President George W. Bush. H/T McIntosh Enterprises.
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Biden Did Not Speak To The Faithful

by Bill Donohue: In his address to the Congress, President Biden spoke to many of his constituents, mostly in the way of promising an expansion of existing government programs or starting new ones. He did not address the concerns of religious Americans.

Over the past year, the faithful have had their religious rights abridged, if not eviscerated, by Covid restrictions. There were several court battles, reaching to the U.S. Supreme Court. Biden said nothing about these First Amendment restrictions. Nor did he mention the words “religion” or “religious liberty” in his speech.

The president did, however, speak to the rights of men who think they are women and women who think they are men. “To all transgender Americans watching at home—especially the young people who are so brave—I want you to know that your president has your back.” He did not explain what is “so brave” about being sexually confused.

Biden said he wants Congress to support the Equality Act “to protect the rights of LGBTQ Americans.” He did not tell the American people that this piece of legislation is the most anti-religious liberty act ever proposed, and that it would cancel the protections afforded by the historic Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993, a bill supported by then- Senator Joe Biden and signed by President Bill Clinton.

The first of four challenges we face, Biden said, is “access to good education.” African American and Hispanic parents are stuck on a waiting line seeking to enroll their children in the local charter school—the demand outstrips the supply—seeking “access to good education.” They want more charter schools, not fewer.

No matter, Biden is opposed to all school-choice initiatives, including charter schools. He certainly does not support any voucher program that might enable minorities the chance to send their children to a Catholic school. The record shows that minority students do much better in charter schools and Catholic schools than they do in public schools, but that does not matter to our “devout Catholic” president.

The Biden administration, led by the president, is convinced that America is a racist country. He said it again in his speech, arguing that we need to “root out systemic racism.” Given that he has spent his entire adult life in public office, it behooves him to disclose why he has never talked about “systemic racism” until recently. After all, over the past half century he has been a U.S. senator and vice president. We need to know: What has he done to ”root out systemic racism”?

If there is systemic racism, it is rooted in those who want to keep blacks in their place, denying them the same choice to send their children to quality schools that the affluent can afford. Perversely, this means President Joe Biden is part of the problem he says exists.
----------------------------------
Bill Donohue writes for the Catholic League.
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Law and Odor

The FBI seems only interested in investigating Republican or Trump associates while giving Democrats a pass.
Editorial Cartoon by AF "Tony" Branco

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Pols Don’t Like Recalls

by Paul Jacob: California State Senator Josh Newman has, for now, withdrawn a bill to let elected officials facing a recall see the names of petition signers so that they may be asked if they really mean it.

The Democrat complains that critics call his bill “an attack on not just the recall but on them and their constitutional rights. It wasn’t a good context to have a conversation.”

So unfair!

The willingness of defenders of petition rights to speak up does sound pretty inconvenient for foes of this popular democratic check on power.

Perhaps we’re supposed to believe that under Newman’s legislation, the interviews would go like this: “Did you mean to sign the petition to recall me?” “I did.” “Just checking. Bye.”

Obviously, the targeted official’s opportunity and authority to quiz petition signers would enable his team to intimidate existing and prospective signers. The aim? Try to prevent a question with enough valid signatures from reaching the ballot.

Years ago, in other states, opposition campaigns sent retired FBI agents to knock on doors. Legal, but very intimidating. Which is why California does not make the names public.

The legislation would not have applied to the current petition drive to recall California Governor Gavin Newsom, an effort going splendidly with more than 1.5 million signers. But Newman’s bill was clearly motivated by the success of this campaign.

Or perhaps it’s residual animosity toward the recall process . . . from Sen. Newman himself, having been recalled by voters in 2018. (He came back to win election once again in 2020.)

Of course, signing a petition in itself says “I want this question on the ballot.” If a petition signer changes his mind, there is a process to retract it. No bullying follow-up needed.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.
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Paul Jacob (@Common_Sense_PJ) 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. Jacob is a contributing author on the ARRA News Service.
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Former DOJ official who helped get false Trump-Russia FISA against Carter Page approved named as FISA amicus curiae

The American people’s representatives do not even get to ask questions of this court. Maybe it’s just time to abolish it.
by Robert Romano: Former Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security Mary McCord who helped steward the ill-fated, false Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant application in 2016 against then-Trump campaign advisor Carter Page—alleging he and then candidate Donald Trump were Russian agents—has been named an amicus curiae advisor to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, according to Georgetown Law ICAP.

Established under 50 U.S. Code § 1803(i) in the 2015 USA Freedom Act, which replaced the Patriot Act, the amici curiae advisors have as their duties to provide “legal arguments that advance the protection of individual privacy and civil liberties; information related to intelligence collection or communications technology; or legal arguments or information regarding any other area relevant to the issue presented to the court.”

Since the FISA Court lacks any defense counsel to remind the judge that it is wholly unconstitutional to spy on American citizens, it is a one-sided affair where the Justice Department presents evidence to justify spying on American citizens. No crime needs to have been committed, just show evidence that the individual may have been in contact with a foreign power via an agent or official, and then the FISA Court can authorize access to your phone calls, emails, text messages and other documents, and also those of contacts and contacts’ contacts.

The amici curiae are supposed to act as a stand-in for defense counsel. In the case of McCord, however, who helped steward the Carter Page FISA warrant across the finish line in Oct. 2016, is this a case of a fox guarding the hen house? The allegations originated from the DNC and the Hillary Clinton campaign, who hired Fusion GPS and former British spy Christopher Steele to produce the fake dossier, and then were forwarded to the FBI, who initiated the investigation, resulting in an Oct. 2016 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant against then-Trump campaign advisor Carter Page, his contacts, and his contacts’ contacts. It gave the government access to campaign emails, phone calls, text messages and other communications.

The warrant was renewed three times even after Jan. 2017, when the FBI learned that Steele’s source had contradicted him when questioned by the FBI. According to Justice Depatment Inspector General Michael Horowitz’ report, once the main source that Steele used was contacted, “the Primary Sub-source made statements during his/her January 2017 FBI interview that were inconsistent with multiple sections of the Steele reports, including some that were relied upon in the FISA applications. Among other things, regarding the allegations attributed to Person 1, the Primary Sub-source’s account of these communications, if true, was not consistent with and, in fact, contradicted the allegations of a ‘well-developed conspiracy’…”

Instead, the Justice Department doubled down. Per Horowitz, “However, we found no evidence that the Crossfire Hurricane team ever considered whether any of the inconsistencies warranted reconsideration of the FBI’s assessment of the reliability of the Steele reports or notice to OI before the subsequent renewal applications were filed. Instead, the second and third renewal applications provided no substantive information concerning the Primary Sub-source’s interview…” And through it all, McCord was at Justice through April 2017, when it had already been approved three times, even as the Justice Department surely knew its case was falling apart.

Ultimately, it was Special Counsel Robert Mueller whose final report in 2019 found no conspiracy between Russia and the Trump campaign to hack the DNC and put the emails onto Wikileaks. Per Mueller, “the Office did not find evidence likely to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Campaign officials such as Paul Manafort, George Papadopoulos, and Carter Page acted as agents of the Russian government — or at its direction, control or request — during the relevant time period.” As for Michael Cohen, per Mueller, former Trump lawyer “[Michael] Cohen had never traveled to Prague…” even though Steele had Cohen supposedly in Czech Republic in the summer of 2016 meeting with Russian agents.

Mueller added, “the evidence was not sufficient to charge that any member of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with representatives of the Russian government to interfere in the 2016 election.”

And, yet the dragnet against the Trump campaign and then former President Trump would drag on from the summer of 2016 all the way until March 2019 when Mueller issued his report.

So, what role did McCord play? According to the Horowitz OIG report, “Mary McCord was NSD’s Principal Deputy AAG when Crossfire Hurricane was opened. She told us that she received a comprehensive briefing from the FBI on the investigation in January 2017, by which time she was the Acting AAG of NSD.187 She said that prior to that time, she was involved in certain aspects of the investigation through OI’s assistance with the first Carter Page FISA application in September and October 2016, as well as through meetings she attended in November and December 2016 about aspects of the Manafort and Flynn cases. She said that she neither attended nor received long debriefs about the weekly Crossfire Hurricane meetings attended by other NSD officials before the election. According to McCord, as a general matter, it was typical for Department attorneys not to become directly involved in a counterintelligence investigation until the case required legal guidance or legal process. According to McCord, by January 2017, developments in some of the cases, particularly the Flynn and Manafort cases, led to the need for a comprehensive briefing for Department officials on the different cases the FBI was pursuing, as well as for the greater involvement of prosecutors moving forward.”

McCord apparently pushed for more info for the FISA court on who hired Steele (i.e. the DNC and the Hillary Clinton campaign): “Similarly, during her OIG interview, then NSD Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Mary McCord recalled that she had a telephone conversation with then Deputy Director Andrew McCabe during which she advised him that she believed the FISA application needed to include more information about who hired Steele, and that McCabe did not push back. 274 McCabe told us that he did not recall any specific conversations with McCord about this FISA application.”

Here again: “McCord told us that she spoke to McCabe almost every day on various matters and had more than one conversation with him about the Carter Page FISA application, but she did not specifically recall whether she had a conversation with McCabe on or about October 17, and if she did, what specific issue would have prompted a conversation at that time. She said that she believed her most significant conversation with McCabe about the first FISA occurred in October. She said it was the telephone call described earlier, before or during the drafting of the Steele footnote, in which she and McCabe discussed Steele and the need to include more information about the source in the application.”

And yet, the declassified footnotes in the original Oct. 2016 FISA application — there could be others which remain classified — were still quite vague. The only mention of the source stated, “Source #1, who now owns a foreign business/financial intelligence firm, was approached by an identified U.S. person, who indicated to Source #1 that a U.S.-based law firm had hired the identified U.S. person to conduct research regarding Candidate #1’s ties to Russia (the identified U.S. person and Source #1 have a long-standing business relationship). The identified U.S. person hired Source #1 to conduct this research into Candidate #1’s ties to Russia. The FBI speculates that the identified U.S. person was likely looking for information that could be used to discredit Candidate #1’s campaign.”

And, McCord, who did nothing to stop it, is now named a friend of the FISA Court. That too is an understatement. Maybe she’s too friendly to the court.

The reason it is possible, according to the Mueller report, FISA applications only require a “fair probability” of being a foreign agent, “On four occasions, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) issued warrants based on a finding of probable cause to believe that Page was an agent of a foreign power. 50 U.S.C. §§ 1801(b), 1805(a)(2)(A). The FISC’s probable-cause finding was based on a different (and lower) standard than the one governing the Office’s decision whether to bring charges against Page, which is whether admissible evidence would likely be sufficient to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Page acted as an agent of the Russian Federation during the period at issue. Cf United States v. Cardoza, 713 F.3d 656, 660 (D.C. Cir. 2013) (explaining that probable cause requires only ‘a fair probability,’ and not ‘certainty, or proof beyond a reasonable doubt, or proof by a preponderance of the evidence’).”

That is the thorny problem that Congress must address. Intelligence inherently relies on hearsay and whisper networks in what could be rumors or real actionable intelligence. Without verification, there is no way to tell. The system relies on the honesty and integrity of the agents making the applications, who must guard against fallacious applications like the 2016 Page application was invariably used to target political opponents, tearing the country in half.

Never mind about the Fourth Amendment and the protections against unreasonable searches. The courts have rendered a mass surveillance to be “reasonable” under the Constitution. What a joke.

Now, perhaps having witnessed the Page application’s failure, McCord might be uniquely qualified to prevent the same mistakes of targeting political opponents from being repeated. Or perhaps McCord has no regrets at all about the Page application, and she’s there to make certain they are repeated. We don’t really know. Since the FISA Court’s amici curiae are appointed by the court itself, she will never have to testify to the Senate about why she is best suited for the role. The American people’s representatives do not even get to ask questions of this court. Maybe it’s just time to abolish it.
----------------------------------
Robert Romano is the Vice President of Public Policy at Americans for Limited Government.
Tags: Robert Romano, Americans for Limited Government, Former DOJ official, who helped get, false Trump-Russia FISA, against Carter Page, approved, named as, FISA, amicus curiae To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

How The Pro Act Would Undermine Work-Life Balance For Freelancers And Their Families

by Americans for Propserity: The COVID-19 crisis has driven more than 3 million women out of the U.S. workforce. Among the hardest hit: mothers with young children. By making it harder to work as a freelancer or independent contractor, the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act would further harm women.

Lauren Klafke started her small business, Willow Creek Financial Services, two years ago. An accountant, Klafke helps her clients — who are mostly women — achieve financial security and expand their own companies.

Part of her mission is to reduce the stress and anxiety women feel about the state of their business finances. Klafke has a few dozen clients. Even though the company is in its infancy, as she says, Willow Creek is “moving and shaking.”

But Klafke is worried about the PRO Act’s potential impact on her growing company.


Family time and flexibility at risk under the PRO Act
That’s because Klafke works with independent contractors like Jill Nelson to serve Willow Creek’s clients. Willow Creek is doing well financially, Klafke says, but she could not sustain the cost of hiring full-time employees.

And the independent contractors who work with her, like Nelson, prefer not to hold a 9-to-5 job anyway. They likely would not come onboard if Klafke is forced by the PRO Act to transition to a full-time workforce.

Nelson has two young sons. She says she would not be able to work without the flexible scheduling options that independent contracting allows.

“I work my work schedule around my life as mom,” Nelson says. She wants the ability to drop everything if her sons’ school calls about an emergency. “Sometimes [I just need] the freedom to say, let’s go play at the park for a day because my five-year-old needs it.”

Klafke understands this desire for flexibility and for a quality work-life balance. Her son, now 14 months old, was born soon after she started Willow Creek.

“I didn’t start a business just to create a job for myself,” Klafke says. “I started a business to have that freedom. Not just financially, but my time. … It’s important to me that being a business owner allows me the freedom of time.”

Lost income, lost work-life balance
It’s not just Klafke’s business, but the entire U.S. financial services industry that could be altered significantly by the PRO Act. According to Financial Services Institute President and CEO Dale Brown, the bill would reclassify “financial advisors as employees of broker-dealers, undermining these advisors’ choice to be independent contractors running their own businesses.”

“Independent advisors are drawn to the independent model because of the freedom it offers to serve their clients in the way they choose,” Brown says.

Accountant and financial advisor Tracy Jones tells Financial Advisor IQ she would likely lose 50 percent of her income if the PRO Act were to become law.

Klafke’s business also is at risk — and, with it, the work-life balance she has carefully developed. She doesn’t want “to spend more time at work than with” her family and have nothing of her own to show for her effort.

“As scary as it is to have to build your own business from the ground up and make it succeed, it is scarier to never take that chance,” Klafke says.

Scarier still? To build something and have an act of Congress outlaw the life you’ve built.
------------------------
Americans for Prosperity AFP)
Tags: AFP, Americans for Prosperity, The Pro Act, Would Undermine Work-Life Balance, For Freelancers, Their Families To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Fact-Checking 7 of Biden's Claims in His Address to Congress

by Rachel del Guidice: President Joe Biden delivered his first address to a joint session of a downsized Congress on Wednesday night, nearly 100 days into his presidency.

Biden spoke to only 200 masked lawmakers in the spacious House chamber, even though most, if not all, members of Congress have been vaccinated for COVID-19 and federal health guidelines don’t require such masking and distancing precautions.

The president fist-bumped senators and representatives on his way to the podium, where he delivered his address as Vice President Kamala Harris and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi sat behind him, keeping their masks on.

“One hundred days ago, America’s house was on fire,” Biden said early on. “We had to act.”

Speaking for just over an hour, Biden talked about numerous issues on his agenda—but wasn’t always truthful.

Here’s a look at seven instances where setting the record straight may help those evaluating the speech.

1. ‘Protect the Sacred Right to Vote’
“And if we are to truly restore the soul of America, we need to protect the sacred right to vote. More people voted in the last presidential election than ever before in our history—in the middle of one of the worst pandemics ever. That should be celebrated. Instead it’s being attacked.”

About 160 million Americans voted in the presidential election in November, a record number, USA Today reported.

But conservatives say the left is out to nationalize elections by giving the federal government control over local and state elections, what the president apparently meant when he said voter turnout is “being attacked.”

Congressional Democrats’ legislation, which they call the For the People Act, would override states’ authority to conduct their elections, mandate “no fault” absentee ballots, and make it easier “to commit fraud and promote chaos at the polls through same-day registration,” according to a backgrounder from The Heritage Foundation.

The legislation also would provide taxpayer money for candidates for federal office, require nonprofits to disclose donors, mandate that states allow voter registration on Election Day, allow felons to vote, and allow ballots to be counted outside voters’ home precincts.

“Congress should pass HR 1 and the John Lewis Voting Rights Act and send them to my desk right away,” Biden said. “The country supports it. Congress should act.”

Biden is partly correct on this point. An Associated Press poll in April found that about half of those surveyed said they support expanding access to early and mail-in voting, which HR 1 and S 1 would do.

However, the legislation also would eliminate most state voter ID laws, which require anyone who wants to vote to first show a recognized form of identification.

A Fox News poll this week found that 77% of Americans say “a valid form of state or federally issued photo identification to prove U.S. citizenship” should be required for voting.

2. Tax Cuts ‘Added $2 Trillion to Deficit’
“Look at the big tax cut in 2017. It was supposed to pay for itself and generate vast economic growth. Instead it added $2 trillion to the deficit.”

In his speech, Biden pushed for tax increases for high earners and corporations, and took a shot at the tax reform law passed by Congress and signed by President Donald Trump just before Christmas 2017.

As noted in an analysis last month published by The Daily Signal, the Trump tax cuts did not pay for themselves. But the tax cuts were not the cause of the budget deficit.

The tax cuts helped to grow the economy, but not enough to shrink the deficit—which is caused by spending, former Heritage tax expert Adam Michel noted in the analysis.

Annual budget deficits primarily are the result of a systemic gap between revenues and expenditures resulting from sustained growth in mandatory spending programs since the 1970s.

If Congress undoes the 2017 tax cuts, the deficit would continue to grow. The tax cuts represent only about 16% of the pre-pandemic budget deficit.

The projected annual deficit in 2030 is bigger than the entire 10-year cost of the Trump tax cuts from 2017.

After the tax cuts, the economy grew, the labor market improved, and wages increased by more than a percentage point in the two subsequent years, resulting in annual wages of more than $1,400 above trend for production and nonsupervisory workers.

New job openings increased in 2018, and about 83,000 more Americans voluntarily left their jobs for better opportunities at the end of 2019 and before the COVID-19 pandemic struck in early 2020.

According to data from the Internal Revenue Service, Americans in every income group benefited from lower effective tax rates, which dropped 1.4 percentage points in 2018.

The tax cuts that took effect in 2018, as a percentage of taxes paid in 2017, were largest for the lowest-income Americans and smallest for the top 1% of earners. This means high-income Americans now pay a larger share of income taxes than they did before the Trump tax cuts.

3. Corporations Must ‘Pay Fair Share’
“I will not impose any tax increases on people making less than $400,000 a year. … We’re going to reform corporate taxes so they [corporations] pay their fair share—and help pay for the public investments their businesses will benefit from.”

Between 75% and 100% of corporate tax increases are passed onto workers through lower wages and less investment, according to past analysis from Congress’ Joint Committee on Taxation, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Tax Analysis, and the Congressional Budget Office.

These estimates indicate that, even without tax hikes for “people making less than $400,000 a year,” they would be affected by higher taxes on other Americans.

4. ‘Epidemic of Gun Violence’
“[So-called ghost guns] are homemade guns built from a kit that includes the directions on how to finish the firearm. The parts have no serial numbers, so when they show up at a crime scene, they can’t be traced.”

Biden, noting that he already has called for a ban on “ghost guns,” asked Senate Republicans to close loopholes on background checks to purchase a gun and again ban high-capacity magazines.

“I will do everything in my power to protect the American people from this epidemic of gun violence,” the president said. “But it’s time for Congress to act as well.”

Gun crimes actually are down from the early 1990s, when Congress passed several gun control laws, according to the Pew Research Center.

Amy Swearer, a legal fellow at The Heritage Foundation, wrote:Neither regulating ‘ghost guns’ nor making gun owners pay a $200 tax for pistol arm braces meaningfully addresses root causes of gun violence. These actions are, in fact, far more likely to turn responsible gun owners into felons than to prevent a single gun death.5. ‘Add Millions of Jobs’
“[The American Jobs Plan] creates jobs to upgrade our transportation infrastructure. Jobs modernizing roads, bridges, and highways. Jobs building ports and airports, rail corridors and transit lines.”

Despite Biden’s calling his proposal an infrastructure bill, less than 6% of the spending in it would go to building or repairing roads, bridges, and other projects typically associated with infrastructure, according to a Fox News analysis.

Referring to a White House summary, the Fox News analysis said the proposed American Jobs Plan, with a price tag of over $2 trillion, would spend only $115 billion to modernize bridges, highways, and roads.

A more broad definition, allowing for “infrastructure resilience,” Amtrak, broadband, airports, and road safety, stretches infrastructure spending to $750 billion.

The proposal includes hundreds of billions in other spending, such as $400 billion for home-based elder care; $35 billion for climate change research; $50 billion for “research infrastructure” at the National Science Foundation; and $213 billion for “home sustainability” and public housing.

6. ‘Vaccinating the Nation’
“We’re vaccinating the nation … After I promised 100 million COVID-19 vaccine shots in 100 days, we will have provided over 220 million COVID shots in 100 days.”

Biden did surpass his initially stated goal of a million vaccine doses given per day. However, according to a Washington Post analysis published two days after Biden’s inauguration, the Trump administration already was closing in on that target with nearly 1 million vaccinations administered per day.

The Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed spurred drug companies and agencies to develop and approve two different COVID-19 vaccines by the time Biden took over.

The Post analysis noted “greater manufacturing certainty and the increased pace of inoculations in the final days of the Trump administration.”

The Post added:Even with vaccine shortages and bottlenecks in delivery, the pace needed to meet the new administration’s goal—1 million doses administered per day—was already achieved [Jan. 22] and four other days of the previous eight, according to Washington Post data. The accelerating speed of the program undercuts assertions by some Biden advisers that they were left no plan by the Trump administration and suggests they need only to keep their feet on the pedal to clear the bar they set for themselves.7. ‘American Families Plan’
“We add two years of universal, high-quality preschool for every 3- and 4-year-old in America. … And then we add two years of free community college.”

Studies cast doubt on the effectiveness of government-funded prekindergarten programs.

In 2012, for example, a Department of Health and Human Services study of Head Start tracked 5,000 3- and 4-year-old children through the end of third grade. The study found the program had little to no impact on parenting practices.

Researchers at Vanderbilt University evaluated Tennessee’s voluntary pre-K program. They reported no significant differences in achievement by the end of kindergarten.

Regarding “free” community college, England tried and discarded the idea of taxpayer-funded college after three decades encompassing the 1960s through the 1980s. Officials there determined that the program hurt low-income students when colleges capped enrollment.

Ken McIntyre contributed to this report.
---------------------------
Rachel del Guidice writes for The Daily Signal.
Tags: Rachel del Guidice, The Daily Signal, Fact-Checking, 7 of Biden's Claims, in His Address, to 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!

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Please Stop Guilting Christians Into Accepting Joe Biden

by Mario Murillo: Preachers stood in their pulpits and insulted, rebuked, and rejected Donald Trump while he was President. Now they insist that you are not a good Christian unless you accept Joe Biden.

Even if they do not know it, they are siding with Facebook and YouTube–who calling for censorship and criminal charges against Christians who question the validity of Biden’s election.

These preachers were wrong before, and they are wrong now.

Still other high profile evangelical leaders are much more gentle in their advice that we at least commend Joe if he does something right. The issue with that is that it denies the reality of what is really going on: a puppet and a rogue government.


No one should be quilting Christians into accepting Joe Biden. And yes, there are sound Biblical reasons for rejecting him.

But before I show you what the Bible instructs us to do in this situation, we need to address the biggest lie. The biggest lie says we need to accept the election and settle the issue of Biden’s presidency, once and for all, so that we can get back to normal and the nation can heal.

Let me ask you. How can we get back to normal while Biden is plunging the nation into chaos and glorifying things God hates? And how can we heal when, every day, Biden tears the nation apart with insulting rhetoric and inflammatory actions aimed at the Church?



God and His Word tell us what to do about Biden. Luke 13:31-32, “At that very hour some Pharisees came up and said to Him, ‘Go away from here, for Herod is determined to kill You.’ And He said to them, ‘Go and tell that fox [sly and crafty, skulking and cowardly], Behold, I drive out demons and perform healings today and tomorrow, and on the third day I finish My course.’”

Herod had crossed a line that made it appropriate to label him a fox—a label that we will expand on later. But Jesus is loving. Why is He disrespecting the office of King by calling him names? And more importantly, why is He refusing to obey the King?

Albert Barnes said in his commentary, “Tell that fox—A fox is an emblem of slyness, of cunning, and of artful mischief. The word is also used to denote a dissembler. Herod was a wicked man, but the “particular thing” to which Jesus here alludes, is not his “vices,” but his “cunning, his artifice,” in endeavoring to remove (Jesus) out of his territory. (Herod) had endeavored to do it by stratagem – by sending these (Pharisees) who pretended great friendship for his life“” Behold, I cast out devils”—(Jesus is saying), Announce to him the fact that I am working miracles in his territory, and that I shall continue to do it. I am not afraid of his art or his enmity. I am engaged in My appropriate work, and shall continue to be, as long as is proper, in spite of his arts and his threats.


The American church must confront all the Leftist leaders: Biden, Harris, Newsom, Whitmer, and Cuomo, et al., the same way that Jesus confronted Herod. The American church must say, “You will not close our doors or stop the miracles of God that flow from our ministries!”

Every American Christian must see that Biden is a puppet for a sinister cabal. He is the ailing mouthpiece of a dark and destructive agenda; an agenda that no Christian can support.

Biden is a weak Herod, but a Herod, nonetheless. I could cite many examples, but here are just a few:

- He wants to make it a criminal act to question his election.
He wants to label anyone who still believes that Trump won as homegrown terrorists and he wants to close down their businesses. Glenn Kirschner, a DOJ operative launched a campaign to force “every business in America” to take a pledge that states, in part, that “The 2020 presidential election was free and fair, and produced accurate, reliable results.”

- He locks down Americans in the name of stopping infections, but he allows illegals who are sick with a new strain of Covid to freely enter and then roam our nation. Untold numbers of potentially sick people have been released into our communities.

- Here is a list of his goals: to use tax money to fund abortions, up to, and after birth; eliminate capital punishment; confiscate firearms and shut down gun manufacturers; defund the police; pay reparations to African-Americans; raise taxes up to 70%; push the green agenda, close down coal and oil projects, spend trillions on ‘clean energy’, and increase the national debt; stop building the wall at the border and give billions to illegals; allow them to vote; pack the courts; change voter laws; eliminate the Electoral College; undo all that Trump accomplished; divide Israel and Jerusalem into two nations; give billions to Palestinians; reinstate the Iran Nuclear deal; allow transgenders in the military and in women’s sports; allow transgender men into women’s restrooms and locker rooms; support gay marriage; legalize hard drugs; alter international trade agreements so they favor other nations and drive businesses out of America overseas; expand Obama-care; force religious organizations to hire LGBTQs; tax churches; brainwash students; persecute the church; demand vaccination passports; and many, many more failed and dangerous policies.

Biden’s actions reside outside the law of man and God. Therefore, we must relate to him as a rogue president, and we must therefore relate to God as our Leader at this moment.

And we must continue the work of God, without interruption―no matter what. Now you know why we must stop quilting Christians into accepting Joe Biden.
-------------------------------
Mario Murillo is an evangelist Mario Murillo, minister, blogger.
Tags: Mario Murillo, minister, blogger, Please Stop, Guilting Christians, Into Accepting Joe Biden To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Red States Get Seat Revenge in Census

by Tony Perkins: There's more than one way to get good government: move to it! According to the latest Census data, that's what a massive number of Americans who are sick of higher taxes, lockdowns, and regulations are doing. In other words, there's more than one set of migrant caravans in North America -- and the legal ones are pulling up to homes in places like California and New York, loading up the belongings of thousands of families and driving them to freer, cheaper states like Texas. You don't just have to vote at the ballot box, Chuck DeVore points out. You can vote with a U-Haul too.

Apart from any election, the Census report is probably the most anticipated event on the parties' calendars. Every 10 years, the government adjusts the number of congressional seats and electoral votes based on the decade's population shifts. This year's count, most people expected, would change the political landscape a lot. With people fleeing states like California faster than you can say "Gavin Newsom," the bluest parts of the map were bound to take a hit. This week, the bureau confirmed, they did.

For the first time in history, the state of California is losing a congressional seat, along with liberal bastions like Illinois, Michigan, New York, and more moderate neighbors like Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Alabama, Rhode Island, and Minnesota -- where some change was expected -- just barely avoided the same fate. In fact, less than 100 residents -- 89 -- made the difference between Minnesota losing a representative and keeping it!

The big winners, though, as Dave Wasserman explains on the Cook Political Report, are the states like Texas, where thousands of families are moving to escape the oppressive leadership and tax rates of the West Coast. The Lone Star State alone picked up two House seats, and Florida, Montana, North Carolina, Colorado, and Oregon all added one. For DeVore, who's been following these trends for years, all of the signs were there. "This has been going on for quite some time and there's various ways of measuring it," he said on "Washington Watch." You can look at the tax levels, for instance. Another way to measure it, DeVore points out, is through the Fraser Institute, who tracks the "economic freedom" of states.

"It looks at taxation, it looks at government spending, and it looks at labor law, union strength. And what's fascinating about that is if you look at the bottom five states in the new Fraser ranking--New York, Vermont, Alaska, California, and West Virginia -- every state that could lose a state did lose the seat." (Vermont and Alaska can't lose any more, since they only have one. "So it's an interesting indication that people like freedom. They don't like to live in these oppressive high tax states." Florida, New Hampshire, Virginia, Tennessee, and Texas, on the other hand, are the "freest" five states in American, and they're adding blue state refugees faster than most leaders can count.

"When people vote -- with a moving van or a U-Haul truck -- they vote for lower taxes and smaller government," DeVore explains. Even Silicon Valley, where some of the most radical employers in the company are headquartered, is bleeding technology firms. Joe Lonsdale, who runs a $3.6 billion dollar venture-capital firm, finally admitted in the Wall Street Journal last November, "I love California, but I had to leave."

Of course, in the big picture, what also matters is the Electoral College. Not only did these "freer" states win more congressional seats, they also won a bigger slice of the presidential pie. For the next 10 years, Texas has two more electoral votes, and Florida, North Carolina, Oregon, and Montana have one extra. The same goes for the states that lost a seat -- California, Illinois, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Come November 2024, their influence in picking the next president will also slightly wane. In 2020's election, it wouldn't have affected the outcome. Joe Biden would have won by 303 electoral votes instead of 306. But in future elections, who knows? It could end up being a significant reward for states who create the kind of friendly economic climate more families and businesses are looking for.

As for the more impending effects -- like the 2022 midterms -- DeVore believes it "increases the odds that [there will be] a shift in who holds the speaker's gavel." Republicans could gain as many as eight seats based on this new map, experts think. And thanks to the current make-up in most state legislatures, Wasserman explains, "Republicans have the final authority to draw congressional lines in 187 districts, down from 219 seats in 2011. Democrats will have final authority in states totaling 75 districts, up from 44 in 2011. New bipartisan commissions passed by voters in Colorado, Michigan and Virginia bring the number of commission-drawn districts to 121 up from 88 ten years ago. And there are 46 districts in states where control is split between the parties, down from 77."

So as frustrating and appalling as the first 100 days of the Biden administration have been, take hope. State elections have consequences too -- and those conservative leaders and representatives voters picked up last fall are the most underappreciated story of 2020. Those statewide elections are about to play a major role in backstopping the Biden agenda -- and, based on his first three months, not a moment too soon.
------------------------------
Tony Perkins is President of the Family Research Council.
Tags: Tony Perkins, Family Research Council, Red States, Get Seat Revenge, in Census To 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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