Congressional Republicans are continuing a welcomed pattern of pursuing fiscal responsibility by the federal government – just what the voters charged them to do. Their political counterparts and their ideological antithesis, the Democrats, instead are plotting to sabotage talks on federal spending and speciously blame and attack the Republicans. Their philosophy is that there can really never be too much spending.
Prudently, the Republicans are resurrecting the idea of a balanced budget amendment in order to force restraint in spending and taxation. They are conflating ideas from the past with new ones to create a Constitutional Amendment that will facilitate this.
In the end, they will irrefutably show that they are the party of fiscal responsibility and restraint so that the taxpayers can keep more of what they earn and all of us can enjoy a higher standard of living.
Budget Balance By Law
Investor’s Business Daily 03/28/2011
Fiscal Policy: The balanced budget amendment idea has lain dormant for years. But Republicans are bringing it back. In a day when runaway spending is running away faster than ever, we need a mechanism to rein it in.
GOP leaders expect in the next two weeks to introduce to the public a balanced budget amendment that they believe will fix the profound debt and deficit problems that lawmakers have created for the taxpayers. Done correctly, a balanced budget amendment might do just that.
Congressional Republicans had planned to announce their intention to amend the Constitution in the middle of the month, but decided to wait for a few weeks until they could come up with a bill they could all support.
Once lawmakers have agreed to a piece of legislation, the GOP will go public with it — and the promise is the process will be highly transparent.
In other words, Congress won't have to pass the amendment before everyone finds out what's in it.
"We will have a genuine rollout," Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, guaranteed Human Events, "so the American people can know what we're doing and they can call, and email, and fax, and demand their senators and congressmen support it and create a true grass-roots effort."
While there are competing versions of the balanced budget amendment among Republican lawmakers, Human Events reported last week that the likely final version of the amendment will:
• Cap spending at 18% of GDP. Under President Obama, spending has soared to 23.8% (fiscal 2010) and 24.7% (current fiscal year) of GDP.
• Allow federal spending to exceed federal revenue only when two-thirds of both chambers approve a specific dollar amount beyond government income.
• Prohibit tax hikes to balance the budget unless two-thirds in both chambers vote to override the limitation. The significance of this can't be overstated. Any amendment that enforces a balanced budget without such a restraint would only make matters worse. A large number of Democrats and a few soft Republicans would be giddy at the prospect of endlessly raising taxes.
• Require increases in the debt limit to be approved by three-fifths of both chambers.
• Force the president to submit a balanced budget each year to Congress.
In return for allowing the debt ceiling to exceed its current $14.2 trillion threshold, the GOP is demanding that Congress vote on a balanced budget amendment.
Should Republicans get their vote, and two-thirds of each chamber approve the amendment, it will go to the state legislatures. It must then be ratified in three-fourths of the states to be added to the Constitution.
To get it through the House, Republicans will need help from Democrats. Their 49-seat majority does not reach the two-thirds level required to approve an amendment. But a balanced budget amendment bill introduced this year by Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., has 215 co-sponsors, with 13 Democrats among them.
The GOP will also need help from Democrats, who have 51 of the 100 seats, to move it through the Senate. With votes from all 47 Republicans, the amendment will have to attract support from 20 Democrats.
While the numbers would indicate that passage in the Senate is unlikely, the prospect isn't entirely hopeless. Human Events notes that there are four Democrats who voted for the balanced budget amendment in 1997 who still serve in the Senate.
Democratic Sens. Mark Udall — who has offered his own balanced budget amendment — and Claire McCaskill — who has pushed for a 20.6% of GDP cap on spending — are two others who might vote for another balanced budget amendment.
But even if it gets hung up in one or both chambers, Cornyn still believes that the balanced budget amendment will at least be a useful guide to politics.
"I think the voters would know," he told Human Events, "with very stark clarity, who is for a balanced budget and who is not."
Typically all anyone needs to know about where a politician stands on a balanced budget is party affiliation. But maybe the shocking behavior of the Obama spending machine will clear up some Democrats' thinking. For those who refuse to learn, there are the elections of 2012.
By not effectively addressing illegal immigration issue, the anchor baby issue all while leaving our borders insecure and porous, we have left our country vulnerable on several accounts including massive unreimbursed costs, security, increased crime, overburdening of our educational system and reduction in its quality and effective resources.
This has also become a political issue with significant implications on both sides of the aisle. The Democrats largely refuse to effectively address the problem claiming that these individuals deserve better and it is our obligation to facilitate it by providing resources such as free health care, education and food stamps (all at the expense of us, the taxpayer). Part of the reason is related to their socialist utopian ideas of equality independent of effort, circumstances or national origin. They claim that the Fourteenth Amendment guarantees them these rights.
However, the real reasoning is political expediency, power and money. These illegals vote Democrat by a margin of at least 2 to 1. By allowing the status quo, the Democrats are, in essence, guaranteeing themselves re-election in the future as there will be potentially a net increase of Democrat voters over Republicans by at least 4 million. Even worse, this will dilute the effects and power of the votes of true, homegrown citizens thus abridging our rights.
Attacking the Constitutional argument, most constitutional scholars agree that the 14th Amendment was inserted into the Constitution to ensure that children born to African slaves would be considered citizens. It was not intended to be interpreted as it has been for many years now. The consequence of this distorted “interpretation” is illegal aliens steal their way into our great country for the sole purpose of birthing "anchor babies" in order to gain access to our generous welfare benefits and live a more enjoyable life?
As the article below points out, the illegal immigrant parents of stateside-born children gain access to $600 million in social services benefits each year in Los Angeles County alone! When health care and public safety expenses are factored in, this cost exceeds $1.6 billion which doesn’t even include the costs associated with educating these children. With most municipalities in California and the state itself drowning in red ink, this is a burden the taxpayers cannot and should not be required to bear. Project the well over $2 billion in L.A. County alone (for just one year) to every other city, county, and state in America burdened by this fraudulent cost and we are talking well over $100 billion per year.
This massive expenditure of taxpayer dollars could be better employed to reduce our debt and deficit. This could be facilitated if changes were made such that the Fourteenth Amendment was followed as intended, not as the Progressives and Democrats want it to be interpreted - as part of their living, breathing document shtick.
Welfare Tab for Children of Illegal Immigrants Estimated at $600M in L.A. County
January 19, 2011 FoxNews.com
Welfare benefits for the children of illegal immigrants cost America's largest county more than $600 million last year, according to a local official keeping tabs on the cost.
Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich released new statistics this week showing social spending for those families in his county rose to $53 million in November, putting the county government on track to spend more than $600 million on related costs for the year -- up from $570 million in 2009.
Antonovich arrived at the estimate by factoring in the cost of food stamps and welfare-style benefits through a state program known as CalWORKS. Combined with public safety costs and health care costs, the official claimed the "total cost for illegal immigrants to county taxpayers" was more than $1.6 billion in 2010.
"Not including the hundreds of millions of dollars for education," he said in a statement.
Antonovich's figures, though, center on costs generated by American-born children of illegal immigrants. Isabel Alegria, communications director at the California Immigrant Policy Center, said it's "unfair" to roll together costs associated with both illegal immigrants and U.S.-born citizens.
"Those children are U.S. citizens, children eligible for those programs," Alegria said.
She also questioned the authenticity of Antonovich's numbers regarding health care and public safety -- though for the welfare program statistics, Antonovich cited numbers from the county's Department of Public Social Services.
Antonovich acknowledges that the children whose benefits he's focusing on are U.S.-born. But he argues that the money is collected by the illegal immigrant parents, putting a painful burden on taxpayers, including those who are legal immigrants.
"The problem is illegal immigration. ... Their parents evidently immigrated here in order to get on social services," Antonovich spokesman Tony Bell said. "We can no longer afford to be HMO to the world."
He said the state should cut back on these social benefits. According to the November statistics, that cost accounted for 22 percent of all food stamp and CalWORKS spending in the county.
Over the summer, the Federation for American Immigration Reform also looked at these kinds of costs nationwide to get an idea of the burden to local governments at a time when many are grappling with budget deficits.
The organization reported that the cost of illegal immigration stands at about $113 billion a year. Nearly half of that amount went toward education costs, according to the study. Costs were naturally higher in states with large illegal immigrant populations -- in California, the total annual cost was pegged at $21.8 billion.
There are many reasons why the Second Amendment right to bear arms is critical and must not be abridged in any way. The Left is trying to exploit the Tucson shootings to, once again, attempt to implement substantial gun control. We must make sure that this does not occur.
This comic illustrates another important and not frequently discussed reason to maintain this right. Data has repeatedly and irrefutably shown that states with concealed weapon carry laws have lower crime rates that states and cities which don't allow it.
The article below details the outrageous arrest, conviction and sentencing of a man who was found to have to unloaded guns in his car which were legally purchased and properly stored. Unfortunately for him, this occurred in liberal N.J. which has among the nation’s most stringent gun control law. Luckily, N.J. Governor Chris Christie was apprised of the absurdity of this case and commuted the sentence.
Such strict gun control laws may ostensibly be in direct conflict with our Second Amendment rights. Furthermore, research has consistently and irrefutably shown that states in which such laws are enacted have a statistically higher crime rate.
We must vigilantly protect our right to bear arms. In many nations it has been this right which has protected the citizenry from oppressive and tyrannical governments.
Christie Commutes Sentence of Man Serving 7 Years for Transporting Legal Guns
Jonathon M. Seidl December 21, 2010
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has commuted the sentence of a man sentenced to seven years in prison for transporting guns he owned legally.
27-year-old Brian Aitken was arrested, charged, and convicted in 2009 after his mother called 911 (but hung up), worried that he was distraught over not being able to spend time with his son and was considering suicide.
Police eventually traced the call and found Aitken. And when they did, they also found two unloaded handguns in his his trunk, which he owned legally. The guns were there, he says, because he was in the process of moving.
That apparently didn’t matter.
“This case is the perfect storm of injustice,” Aitken’s attorney, Evan Nappen, told the Daily Caller last month.
Now it seems Christie agrees. On Monday the governor commuted Aitkens sentence to time already served and ordered him released as soon as it’s “administratively possible.”
The Daily Caller reports:
New Jersey law requires residents who want to transport firearms legally to request a permit from a local law enforcement office and produce a letter stating why it is necessary for them to carry a gun.
Aitken’s attorney argued that his client was innocent of any offense because the firearms were legally purchased (at a Bass Pro Shop), properly stored, and unloaded. And though New Jersey has some of the strictest gun laws in the country, Aitken’s attorney said his client did not violate any law because he was in the middle of moving residences between two states.
Nonetheless, Aitken was sentenced to seven years in prison in August. His supporters say the judge refused to accept evidence supporting his defense. He was convicted of the same kind of felony a criminal who had bought guns with intent to commit a crime would have faced.
Aitken moved from Colorado, where gun laws are much more reasonable, to New Jersey after separating from his wife in 2008. His original plan was to be closer to his son. Now that seems possible.
In an interview on CNBC regarding the death tax issue, the incessantly sputtering and contemptuous Barney Frank has the audacity to state that heirs have done nothing to deserve the inheritance. He does not see this as their money or wealth any longer despite the fact that it has been earned and taxed at least once already. Instead, it is his assertion that this money rightfully belongs to the federal government. Thus, there is no moral issue with him about confiscating wealth – the more the better for him.
Unfortunately, this same attitude is quite pervasive within the Democratic Party. Such an attitude does not relate well to a representative government that should be at the service of the people. On the contrary, it is reflective of an arrogant, corrupt, elitist and pseudo-tyrannical one.
All this provides fodder for serious attempts for a Constitutional Amendment regarding politician term limits.
The noteworthy incidents of speech, writing or thought that have met with publicized censure, humiliation or termination of employment because they transgressed some arbitrarily determined political correctness continues unabated. This has in effect resulted in a contraction of our rights of freedom of speech as guaranteed by the Constitution.
Unfortunately, it only seems to work in one direction and that is ideologically determined. Progressives and liberals get free passes on virtually all that they say (Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Michael Moore, etc.) but the converse doesn’t hold true. Much of this asymmetry can be attributed to a news media that is overwhelmingly far left and intolerant of conservative and even moderate positions.
The following case is just one more example of this absurdity.
State Legislative Staffer Suspended Over ‘Non-Racist’, Anti-Obama Chain Email
A Louisiana State Senate employee has reportedly been reprimanded and suspended without pay for sending an e-mail to hundreds of government workers with a picture that appeared to show President Barack Obama as a Caucasian. The email asked, “Do you like him any better now? No? Me neither. … Then you’re not a racist.”
Senate President Joel Chaisson announced the punishment Tuesday for Tammy Crain-Waldrop after a number of black lawmakers complained the email was offensive. “It is clear that the nature of the e-mail in question was highly inappropriate. Such actions will not be tolerated,” Chaisson, D-Destrehan, said in a statement that described Crain-Waldrop’s e-mail a violation of Senate personnel policy.
After she sent the e-mail, Crain-Waldrop immediately sent another message, apologizing for forwarding the message to the Capitol e-mail post office box by mistake.
The Associated Press reports that Crain-Waldrop can return to work Jan. 3 but for her punishment, she must send a written apology to Senate and House staffers and attend diversity training.
Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh assessed the story Wednesday during his broadcast, outlining Ms. Crain-Waldrop’s “real crimes.”
“Ms. Crain-Waldrop‘s real crimes were opposing Obama’s policy and, two, defending her opposition as nonracist. Now, of course such thinking can’t be allowed,” Limbaugh noted. “It’s hate speech to deny that you can oppose Obama and not be a racist.”
On the O’Reilly Factor, John Stossel illustrated what affirmative action is with a metaphorical bake sale. That is, he charged Asians $1.50 for the same cupcake that a white pays $1.00 and blacks and Hispanics $.50. This is obvious discrimination that everyone can see and understand as evidenced by the responses in the video below.
When it comes to admission to colleges, for example, this same parallel applies. Asians have to score much higher on their SAT’s to get in the same schools as whites whereas Hispanics are admitted with much lower scores and blacks even lower than that. No matter how you evaluate this, it is racism; that is, how a person is treated (admission to college) is based on race and not on abilities.
THIS IS RACISM! (Technically, it can be considered to be reverse racism.)
“Affirmative” action is a euphemism for sanctioned reverse racism. It is “negative” for the vast majority of more deserving or qualified individuals who are discriminated against because of these race based policies.
We see the same unequal treatment or opportunities in other areas such as bidding for federal, state or municipal contracts. This has become government mandated racism brought to you by the compassionate liberals. It is, however, a technical violation of the Fourteenth Amendment and it should not be condoned or accepted.
Affirmative action needs to be relegated to the trash heaps of history. This includes not only governmental related programs but also in education and the private sector. The state of Arizona with the successful approval of its Proposition 107 in the recent elections is the most recent state to ban this legislated discrimination.
We strongly recommend that the remaining states should pursue passage of similar legislation. Federal affirmative action policies should also be deep-sixed.
Just days after liberal correspondent Juan Williams was fired from NPR (National Public Radio) for expressing what was an innocuous personal feeling that apparently wasn’t in accord with political correctness as determined by NPR, a union worker was fired on the spot for wearing a Bush hat and sweat shirt that actually were in honor of his son who was stationed on the carrier U.S.S. George H. W. Bush. What we are witnessing is virulent political correctness with vicious consequences which is unilaterally practiced by liberals and the far left.
This is a planned attack on freedom of speech and thought which is protected by our Constitution. But of course, Obama and the left have stated myriad times that it should be a living, breathing and malleable document as it doesn’t reflect the times today.
They want those times now to apparently be the authoritarian control of speech, thought, opinion and relevant news by Obama, the Democrats, the mainstream news media and the unions.
WE MUST NEVER LET THIS HAPPEN AND WHEN IT DOES – FIGHT IT RELENTLESSLY.
WE MUST NEVER ALLOW OUR GOVERNMENT, POLITICIANS AND OTHER GROUPS TO CONTROL OUR SPEECH, THOUGHTS AND OPINIONS!
Union Stagehand Fired for Wearing Bush Hat and Shirt
A continued flow of evidence regarding the Dept. of Justice and the New Black Panther Party case reveals egregious violations of the Constitution and the Civil Rights Act as a consequence of unequal treatment and rights of Americans based on ethnicity. That is, the top on down mandate was to throw out any discrimination cases brought against minority defendants, especially blacks yet vigorously investigate the converse.
Many heads in the department should roll including Attorney Eric Holder and possibly even Obama. Their racist, depraved actions warrant their expeditious firings.
Travesty Of The Justice Department
Investor’s Business Daily 09/27/2010
Justice: Those who thought hope and change meant equal enforcement of the law were wrong. A top DOJ official testifies about a deliberate policy of not prosecuting minorities or protecting the rights of anybody else.
So much for post-racial justice. First, documents were unearthed showing the Department of Justice lied when it insisted that dropping the New Black Panther Party voter-intimidation case was a decision made by career attorneys, not by political appointees trying to avoid offending a key administration constituency.
Now we have the explosive testimony last Friday of Christopher Coates, former voting chief of the Civil Rights Division, before the U.S. Civil Rights Commission.
Coates said the Panther decision was "the result of their deep-seated opposition to the equal enforcement of the Voting Rights Act against racial minorities and for the protection of white voters who have been discriminated against."
Coates' testimony supported earlier accusations made by J. Christian Adams, formerly one of those career lawyers in the Voting Section.
Adams had told the commission that DOJ officials "over and over and over" showed "hostility" to prosecution of voter-intimidation cases involving "black defendants and white victims."
Adams testified that Associate Attorney General Thomas J. Perrelli, a political appointee, himself overruled a unanimous recommendation for continued prosecution by Adams and his associates of voter intimidation of white voters by members of The New Black Panthers at a Philadelphia polling place in 2008.
Adams had also testified that Julie Fernandes, a deputy assistant general in the Civil Rights Division in charge of voting matters, told Voting Section leadership that the Obama administration would not file election-related cases against minority defendants — no matter what the alleged violation of the law.
Coates verified Adams' testimony about Fernandes, and also said he had been "specifically instructed" by Loretta King, acting assistant attorney general for civil rights, "not to ask any other applicants whether they would be willing to, in effect, race-neutrally enforce the VRA (Voting Rights Act)."
Coates said he had started asking applicants about race-neutrality in voting cases after he noticed internal harassment directed at lawyers and paralegals who in 2005 had helped prosecute the voter intimidation case of Ike Brown, a twice-convicted felon and political activist who ran the Democratic Party in Noxubee County, Mississippi. Like the Panthers, Brown is black.
When the head of the Civil Rights Division, Thomas Perez, testified before both Congress and the commission that the Panther case was dropped because it was considered legally and factually defective, and that the decision was made by career attorneys, not political appointees, he lied.
In fact, the case is perhaps the most provable case of voter intimidation ever.
Black Panther members were videotaped standing outside a Philadelphia polling place brandishing clubs and, according to witness testimony, uttering racial slurs.
If they were members of the KKK or the Tea Party, would the case have been dropped? We think not.
Dropping the new Black Panther Party case, Coates said in his testimony, "was intended to send a direct message to people inside and outside the civil rights division. That message is that the filing of voting cases like the Ike Brown and the NBPP cases would not continue in the Obama administration."
If Fernandes and King indeed have these views, and if political appointees such as Thomas Perrelli and Thomas Perez made the decision to dismiss the Black Panther case for any reason other than the merits of the case, and then lied about it, they should all be fired.
And so should Attorney General Eric Holder.
Holder's tenure as head of the Justice Department has been a disaster. From the closing of Gitmo to civilian trials of Khalid Sheik Muhammed to instantly Mirandizing the Christmas bomber, Holder and his department have displayed an indifference, even hostility, to equal justice and protecting the rights and lives of the American people. All of them.
Updates on this situation reveal that this decision was also a political one: the Obama Administration didn’t want to rattle its staunchest supporter: the “black community”. This finding alone is an outrage and an action that is both despicably depraved and constitutionally illegal (Fourteenth Amendment).
But then again, Obama is concerned with neither … but we MUST be.
Voting in November will be one of OUR constructive responses. We must also exert pressure to have the abominably incompetent, racist and corrupt Attorney General Eric Holder FIRED.
Investor’s Business Daily 09/21/2010
Justice: Despite administration denials under oath, documents obtained by a watchdog group indicate that the decision not to pursue a clear-cut case of voter intimidation was indeed a political decision.
It was perhaps the most clear-cut case of voter intimidation ever. On Election Day 2008, New Black Panther Party members King Samir Shabazz, Malik Zulu Shabazz and Jerry Jackson were videotaped intimidating voters as they stood, dressed in military garb, outside a Philadelphia polling place.
Their conduct was so egregious that the Justice Department of President Bush charged the three thugs with violations of the 1965 Voting Rights Act through intimidation, threats and coercion. When none of the defendants filed a response or showed up at a subsequent hearing, you'd have thought the Justice Department would have won its suit by default.
But a new administration brought a new, and somewhat jaundiced, perspective. Instead, the Justice Department of President Obama essentially dropped the case in May 2009, letting two of the three walk and issuing a weak injunction against King Shabazz. He was forbidden from showing up at another Philadelphia polling place with another nightstick and intimidating other voters for the next three years, an action that was already illegal. He is presumably free to do the same thing in, say, New Jersey in 2012.
The U.S. Civil Rights Commission wanted to know why the case wasn't pursued and if political considerations were involved. On May 14, Thomas Perez, assistant attorney general for civil rights, testified that there was no "political leadership involved in the decision not to pursue this particular case any further than it was" and it was only "a case of career people disagreeing with career people."
The DOJ stonewalled, claiming that all documents involved in the case were "privileged information," that there was nothing to see and we should all move along. The watchdog group Judicial Watch pursued the case, and a court ordered the DOJ to provide it with withheld documents and an explanation of each privilege asserted.
The information that was unearthed reveals that several political appointees were involved in the decision not to pursue the New Black Panther Party. Of particular note was a list of 58 e-mails to or from Deputy Associate Attorney General Sam Hirsch, formerly election attorney for the National Democratic Party.
Christian Adams, the DOJ attorney who resigned to protest the New Black Panther Party decision, describes Hirsch as "a former Democratic Party operative" who, among other activities, "led efforts to impose racial divisions on Hawaii by creating native classifications and powers." Hirsch is a fierce partisan with experience in racial politics.
In testimony before the Civil Rights Commission that he says his bosses tried to block, Adams said Attorney General Eric Holder's department refused to prosecute what he has called "the clearest case of voter intimidation that I've seen since practicing law."
A dozen or so e-mails went up the chain of political command to Associate Attorney General Thomas Perrelli. Deputy Attorney General David Ogden was also in on the political deliberations, contributing, according to the e-mails, his "current thoughts" on the matter.
Adams told the commission that DOJ officials "over and over and over" showed "hostility" to prosecution of voter-intimidation cases involving "black defendants and white victims." Adams says Perrelli, a political appointee, himself overruled a unanimous recommendation for continued prosecution by Adams and his associates.
So when Perez testified that the decision was made only by career attorneys, not political operatives and appointees, he was not telling the truth about the machinations of the most transparent administration in history.
The decision not to prosecute the New Black Panther Party was clearly a political decision designed not to offend a key constituency of the Democratic Party and one of the few bastions of support this administration and the Democrats have left.
The New Black Panther Party should have been prosecuted to the full extent of the law. At least one member of this administration is on shaky legal ground as well.