Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Tea Party Express Issues Election Day Statement on Delaware U.S. Senate Race

The Tea Party Express issued the following statement today regarding the U.S. Senate race in Delaware:

"As voters head to the polls in Delaware today, the news media and many in the political establishment have sought to cast tonight's election returns as a lose-lose proposition for the tea party movement.

"If Conservative Republican Christine O'Donnell wins, the news media and political elite insist that this will be a loss for the Tea Party movement, as it will surely mean a win for the Democrats in November, and increase their chances for retaining a majority in the U.S. Senate.

"But wait, if Liberal RINO Mike Castle wins, the news media and political elite similarly insist that this will be a loss for the Tea Party movement, as it will mean the establishment has defeated the Tea Party-backed candidate.

"So under the logic of those in the media and the political establishment, the Tea Party movement loses either way. Nice try, but we at the Tea Party Express aren't buying this narrative.

"The Tea Party Express, Gov. Sarah Palin, the Independence Hall Tea Party PAC, and Diamond State Tea Party all endorsed Christine O'Donnell because she best represented the principles important to the Tea Party movement: limited government and a return to the constitutional principles this country was founded on, but which our political leaders have increasingly strayed from.

"It used to be the accepted notion that primaries were about allowing voters in a political party to support the best candidate who represented the members of that party. Now, however, we're told voters are stupid if they don't instead play the role of political strategist and support candidates based on a political chess game, regardless of their principles.

"We here at the Tea Party Express trust the voters to follow their hearts and to stick to their principles and beliefs. When Ronald Reagan waged his campaign for president in the 1980 election cycle, the same political elitists and journalists who are deriding Christine O'Donnell as 'unelectable' similarly sneered that an 'extremist' like Reagan could never be elected. As a result, John Anderson from Illinois was egged on to offer a more 'reasonable' choice in the general election campaign. Reagan won, Anderson and Jimmy Carter lost, and the political elite and journalists had egg on their faces.

"Supporting the most liberal Republican Member of Congress, Mike Castle, is not a viable option for constitutional conservatives. Those who have urged support for Castle do so from the most crass and soulless political calculation where principles are irrelevant, as it is a zero sum gain.

"We've tried this route of electing Republicans to government who didn't believe in their own party's platform, when we had a Republican Congress and a Republican in the White House. What we got was massive spending, higher deficits, bailouts, and a significant increase in the size, scope, and power of the government.

"We here in Tea Party movement are trying to change the nature of our leaders in Washington, and that means dumping failed and corrupt politicians like Mike Castle who trade their votes based on the campaign contributions of well-heeled lobbyists or the arm twisting of political party leaders. This is the very reason Mike Castle has attempted to hold at least four positions on ObamaCare - because at each time his primary concern was not what was good for this nation, but what was good for Mike Castle's political ambitions.

"When term-limited Governor Castle wanted to prolong his career feeding off the public trough, and remaining a member of the ruling class, he orchestrated 'The Switch' with Democrat Congressman Tom Carper that would allow both of them to retain their political power. It was all about their egos and their power, and the same motivation for Mike Castle continues to this day.

"Mike Castle and his political henchmen continue this crass and shameless behavior to this day. This year, the Delaware GOP establishment - led by Mike Castle's closest allies and advocates - deliberately chose to not field a Republican candidate for Attorney General in the state of Delaware. Why? Because the Democrat Attorney General is a man named Beau Biden, who happens to be the son of Democrat Vice President, Joe Biden.

"But don't worry say Castle's Republican supporters. If he wins the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate in Delaware we're supposed to expect him to suddenly become some kind of Republican loyalist, helping to advance a conservative revolution in Congress.

"We here at the Tea Party Express don't buy that for one minute. Whether it means switching political parties, or voting with the Democrats on more bailouts, Cap & Trade, or for liberal judicial activists for the U.S. Supreme Court, Mike Castle will play to the same political puppet masters he always has, and that's not to Republicans, conservatives, or his constituents.

"The Tea Party Express has won nearly every election it has played an active role in. Today, the voters of Delaware will decide whether to support the Tea Party Express-backed candidate, Christine O'Donnell. If they do, that will be a victory for the Tea Party movement, no matter how many pundits or journalists try and argue otherwise.

"The next step is to fight on behalf of these Tea Party candidates in November, and ensure that they once again defy the wishes and predictions of the political establishment, by propelling these constitutional conservatives to victory over their liberal Democrat, big-government opponents.
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Saturday, September 4, 2010

Recovery Summer: A Casino, Aquarium, Zoo, Golf Course and Swimming Pool?

With unemployment rising to 9.6%, questions are mounting regarding the effectiveness of the stimulus bill and how stimulus dollars are being spent. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, has sent a letter to the Chairman of the Recovery Act Transparency and Accountability Board, Earl Devaney, regarding stimulus funding being steered for projects that “appear to violate the explicit prohibitions of the Recovery Act.”

Section 1604 of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (AARA) specifically prohibits funds from flowing to certain entertainment and recreation projects:

“Limit on Funds – None of the funds appropriated or otherwise made available in this Act may be used by any State or local government, or any private entity, for any casino or other gambling establishment, aquarium, zoo, golf course, or swimming pool.”

Furthermore, a Memorandum from the President to the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies issued on March 20, 2009 stated:

(a) Funds under the Recovery Act shall not be committed, obligated, or expended by any executive department or agency, and shall not be used by any State or local government or private grantee or awardee, to support projects of the type described in section 1604 of Division A of the Recovery Act…”

“Despite the clear language of the Recovery Act and the subsequent effort by the White House to stress the importance of avoiding the use of stimulus funds for prohibited projects, taxpayer dollars were directed to entities legally barred from receiving them,” Issa wrote to Devaney. “In fact, stimulus money appears to have flowed to each and every type of project prohibited by Section 1604 of the AARA.”

· Casino: In February 2009, AARA funds were provided to students “at Fortune Bay Resort & Casino to get hands on experience in various departments within the resort and casino at our Career Expo Day.”

· Aquarium: In July 2009, AARA funds were awarded to Northwestern University for scientific research on fish. Part of the funding was used for “novel outreach projects (that) will expose the broader public to the results of research, including an art installation concerning the electric fields emitted by these fish and proposed enhancements to the electric fish displays of the Shedd Aquarium.”

· Zoo: In September of 2009, $25 million in ARRA funds were awarded to the Smithsonian for projects including the “completion of various projects at the National Zoo.”

· Golf Course: AARA funds were awarded to the Forest Hills Golf Course through a U.S. Department of Education grant to the Oregon Department of Education. The award funds a program that allows students in Oregon’s Forest Grove school district to use Forest Hills to learn to golf as part of the physical education curriculum.

· Swimming Pool: In July 2009, AARA funds were awarded to Northwestern University to provide “salary an wage compensation for individuals directly involved in AARA-funded projects” including “Pool Lifeguard.”

“In addition to the projects that appear to violate the explicit prohibitions of the Recovery Act, there appear to be additional projects where stimulus funds have been spent on projects that violate the President’s prohibition of the funding of ‘impudent’ projects,” Issa wrote to Devaney. “These include stimulus funds spent on a waterpark, a bowling alley, a keg, beer and cigarette mart, a pet hotel, and a fraternity and sorority event.”

Monday, June 14, 2010

Hill Exclusive: House ethics office asks lobbyists for info on lawmakers

A House ethics office is demanding fundraising information from lobbyists about five Republicans and three Democrats, according to a document obtained by The Hill. 

Read more: http://www.thehill.com/homenews/house/103037-exclusive-house-ethics-office-asks-lobbyists-for-information-on-eight-lawmakers-

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Federal Court Must Decide: Is the Treasury Department's Support of AIG's Shariah-Promoting Subsidiaries Constitutional?

/PRNewswire/ -- The Law Offices of David Yerushalmi, P.C., together with the Thomas More Law Center, filed a motion for summary judgment on Monday, June 7, 2010, on behalf of Kevin Murray against the Treasury Department and the FED in the federal lawsuit pending in the Eastern District of Michigan. The lawsuit, captioned Murray v. Geithner et al. was brought by attorneys David Yerushalmi and Robert Muise, representing the plaintiff, Kevin Murray, a taxpayer and former combat Marine who served in Iraq. The federal lawsuit alleges that the U.S. government's takeover and financial bailout of AIG was in violation of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.

Specifically, at the time of the government bailout (beginning in September 2008 and continuing to the present), AIG was (and still is) the world leader in promoting Shariah-compliant insurance products. Shariah is Islamic law, and it is the identical legal doctrine that demands capital punishment for apostasy and blasphemy and provides the legal and political mandates for global jihad followed religiously by the world's Muslim terrorists. By propping up AIG with tax payer funds, the U.S. government is directly and indirectly promoting Islam and, more troubling, Shariah.

In May 2009, Judge Lawrence Zatkoff rejected the government's motion to dismiss the complaint and later rebuffed the defendants' efforts to stay the proceeding so the government lawyers could take an extraordinary appeal to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. The court then set the ground rules for discovery and granted the parties until May 2010 to conduct discovery.

After a year of document requests, depositions of current and former government witnesses, and three separate subpoenas issued to AIG and the New York Federal Reserve Board, Messrs. Yerushalmi and Muise filed Plaintiff's motion for summary judgment this past Monday, arguing that the undisputed facts demonstrate that the government, through its absolute control and 2 ownership of AIG, and with tens of billions of tax payer dollars, have directly and indirectly promoted and supported Shariah as a religious legal doctrine. What makes this case all the more egregious is that this doctrine--Shariah--also happens to be the underlying legal and military doctrine animating jihad against the West by Muslims from the Middle East, Asia, Russia, Africa, and even right here at home. Each and every one of the domestic and foreign jihad terrorists have proclaimed their allegiance to Shariah and its call for "jihad against apostates and infidels." Two experts on Shariah, Shariah-compliant finance, and jihad testified at length through affidavits in support of plaintiff's case. The government could not--and did not-- oppose this expert testimony with any contrary evidence.

A year's worth of discovery uncovered the following facts in addition to what was known from the public record:

-- AIG has five wholly-owned subsidiaries which promote and practice
Shariah in Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Bahrain, and the U.S.
-- These Shariah-compliant companies employ or otherwise retain the
services of Shariah authorities to tell them how to conduct their
business according to Shariah, including the Shariah-compliant
charities to which these AIG subsidiaries must contribute.
-- The government places absolutely no controls on how its billions are
used by the Shariah-compliant companies or to whom they support with
their "zakat" ('charitable') dollars. Moreover, these companies all
accept Shariah's mandate to support jihad with zakat insofar as they
abide by the authoritative rulings of the world's leading Shariah
-- Over one billion taxpayer dollars have flowed through AIG's
headquarters into supporting AIG's Shariah businesses worldwide.
-- The government has actively promoted Shariah and Shariah-compliant
finance in many ways and venues:
-- The Treasury Department has published, edited, and updated
articles about Shariah-compliant finance, which essentially
promote Islamic law uncritically.
-- The Treasury Department has created and staffed a position called
the Islamic Finance Scholar-in Residence. No other religious law
is so honored.
-- Published presentations by senior Treasury Department officials
lauding Shariah-compliant finance and stating explicitly that the
U.S. government "places significant importance on promoting...
Islamic finance" and has "recently deepened our engagement in
Islamic finance in a number of ways," including a "call[] for
harmonization of Shari'a standards at the national and
international levels."
-- After the AIG bailout, the Treasury Department co-sponsored a
half-day conference called "Islamic Finance 101" for government
policy makers which was in effect a cheerleading program to
promote Shariah and Shariah-compliant finance.

Mr. Yerushalmi remarked: "It is one thing that our government felt compelled to bail out AIG after its fortunes were destroyed due to the company's own recklessness and bad acts. It is quite another thing to use U.S. taxpayer dollars to promote and support AIG's Shariah businesses--all of which don't just sell Shariah products to the Muslim world, but actively promote Shariah as the best, most ethical way of life. Indeed, the Shariah authorities relied upon by AIG's Shariah Supervisory Committees actively promote jihad--and by jihad we mean kinetic war against the infidel West."

Mr. Muise, senior trial attorney for the Thomas More Law Center and co-lead counsel in this case, made the additional point that "We have not only traced taxpayer money to support Shariah, we have found explicit public statements by senior Treasury officials actually telling the world that it is U.S. government policy to support Shariah in the form of Islamic finance and even 'call[ing] for harmonization of Shari'ah's standards.' Since when is it our government's position to involve itself in the internal theological debates surrounding religious laws?"

The government defendants also filed a motion for summary judgment arguing that whatever aid was provided to AIG's Shariah businesses, it was both unintended and de minimus.

Richard Thompson, head of the Thomas More Law Center, added, "It's outrageous that the federal government is the owner of a corporation engaged in a business with interests adverse to the United States. We filed this lawsuit not only to defend constitutional principles, but also to defend our national security. It's clear we can't leave the job of protecting America to the Washington politicians."

The parties will now continue to brief the issue with cross-opposition and reply briefs and then the court will decide. Any decision is likely to end up on appeal at the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. If the government loses, it is quite possible the case could be heard by the Supreme Court.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

U.S. Supreme Court Blocks Release of Campaign Matching Funds

In a major victory for free speech, the U.S. Supreme Court this morning blocked the use of taxpayer money as campaign "matching funds." The Court will decide whether to review a ruling from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

"This ruling vindicates the right of traditionally funded candidates to run their campaigns without the heavy hand of government helping their opponents," said Nick Dranias, the Goldwater Institute's lead attorney in the case known as McComish v. Bennett.

Under the Arizona Citizens Clean Elections Act, candidates who run with public campaign subsidies receive an almost dollar-for-dollar match each time a privately funded opponent raises money above a certain amount, and additional matches when independent expenditures are made against the subsidized candidate.

Today, the Supreme Court restored an injunction against the use of matching funds ordered earlier this year by U.S. District Judge Roslyn O. Silver.

"In a time of soaring budget deficits, the last thing taxpayers should be paying for are politicians' campaigns," said Darcy Olsen, president and CEO of the Goldwater Institute.

The Goldwater Institute Scharf-Norton Center for Constitutional Litigation represents John McComish, Nancy McClain and Tony Bouie, candidates for the Arizona Legislature whose campaigns are funded by private donations. All three are running against taxpayer-funded candidates who will receive a dollar-for-dollar match from the government for every dollar they privately raise.

In January 2010, Judge Silver ruled that matching funds discourage traditionally funded candidates from raising or spending their donations so they can avoid triggering more taxpayer-funded campaign money for their opponents. Judge Silver determined matching funds are an unconstitutional burden on the election speech of privately funded candidates.

A three-judge panel for the Ninth Circuit disagreed in May, and issued an opinion stating the damage to free speech is minimal.

The Goldwater Institute requested that the Supreme Court intervene before the state started to hand out this year's first round of matching funds on June 22, 2010. In a filing before the Court on Monday, June 7, the Goldwater Institute emphasized that publicly subsidized candidates were first warned by Judge Silver more than 18 months ago that matching funds were unconstitutional. Judge Silver issued her final ruling in late January, but delayed her order so the state could appeal. The Supreme Court's action today ended that delay and put Judge Silver's order into effect immediately.

Read more about this and other Goldwater lawsuits to protect individual rights and keep government within its constitutional limits at www.goldwaterinstitute.org/litigation. The Goldwater Institute is an independent government watchdog supported by people who are committed to expanding free enterprise and liberty.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Pro-Life Democrats Who Switched Vote for Health Bill Request Billions in Earmarks

The 11 House Democrats led by Rep. Bart Stupak who dropped their opposition to health care reform legislation mere hours before the final vote have requested $3.4 billion in earmarks -- and one watchdog group wants to know whether the money represents business as usual or political payoffs.

The Sunlight Foundation says it plans to track the earmark requests, which were put in one day after health care reform cleared Congress, to see whether they're approved and whether it appears lawmakers are being rewarded for their vote.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Camp Statement on Preliminary CBO Cost Estimates of the Democrats' Health Care Bill

Ways and Means Ranking Member Dave Camp (R-MI) today made the following statement on the preliminary cost estimate from the Congressional Budget Office on the Democrats' government takeover of health care:

“Democrats have failed to listen to the American people and are plowing forward with a bill that still spends $1 trillion, raises roughly one-half trillion dollars in new taxes, cuts Medicare by more than one-half trillion dollars and increases Americans’ health insurance premiums. The American people have rejected this bill precisely because it taxes too much, spends too much and increases premiums too much.”

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Watch a Special Report from the Front Lines of the Health Care Debate

On Tuesday, March 16th, at 8:30 p.m. EDT, FRC Action will host a live video webcast entitled, "National Townhall on Health Care: Stop the Government Takeover." We've invited Members of Congress, policy experts, and grassroots leaders to join us live at our Washington, D.C. headquarters to help us assess the pending health care overhaul as a vote in Congress looms. Confirmed participants include:

Host: Tony Perkins, President, FRC Action
Congressman Mike Pence (R-Ind.)
Congressman Tom Price, M.D. (R-Ga.)
Bryan Fischer, Director of Issue Analysis, American Family Association
Kristan Hawkins, Executive Director, Students for Life
Marjorie Dannenfelser, President, Susan B. Anthony List
Douglas Johnson, Legislative Director, National Right to Life
Tom McClusky, Senior Vice President, FRC Action
More to be announced.

In addition to briefing us on the significance of this legislation, our guests will also answer viewer questions sent by you via SMS text or email. If allowed to pass, a health care overhaul like the one proposed by President Obama would be devastating to the health, economic well-being, and liberty of American families. Join us this Tuesday evening to find out what you can do to stop a government takeover on health care.

Register now to watch the live webcast on Tuesday, March 16 at 8:30 p.m. EDT

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Westmoreland fight against earmarks gaining steam

Today, the entire House Republican Conference voted to place a moratorium on requesting earmarks, taking a big step toward spending reforms long advocated by U.S. Rep. Lynn Westmoreland.

“The earmark system in Congress is broken, and we needed to take dramatic action like we did today to show the American people we’re serious about doing a better job using their taxpayers wisely and efficiently,” Westmoreland said. “Along with several other conservative legislators, I took this stand against earmarks on my own several years ago, and I have refused to place projects in appropriations bills.

“The way earmarks are done in the House rewards seniority and power of members. It funds projects outside of the competitive process with little means of measuring success or cost-benefit analysis. Tax dollars should go first and foremost to national priorities, they should be distributed fairly and equitably, and when projects fall short of expectations, the funding should end.

“Americans, rightly, have lost faith in Washington’s ability to be responsible with their money. We’ve taken a positive step today. The Democrats’ vow to end all earmarks to for-profit businesses is just more smoke-and-mirrors; it leaves most earmarks safely in place and does nothing to correct the impression that members of Congress are using the federal treasury as a political piggy bank.”

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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Republicans must teach the American Dream

Cal Thomas, Examiner Columnist
"America doesn't need restructuring. It needs revival; revival of the principles that made us strong and great; revival of the moral foundation that proved to be our real strength and allowed us to conquer our demons and become independent, not dependent on government."

Republicans must teach the American Dream

Friday, February 5, 2010

Isakson, Chambliss: Improving Immigration Laws Will Help Unemployment

Yesterday U.S. Senators Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., and Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., joined six of their Senate Republican colleagues in signing a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., asking him to take steps to improve immigration laws in order to help reduce U.S. unemployment.

Isakson and Chambliss believe the millions of workers who are in the United States illegally are only exacerbating the unfair competition American workers currently face as they struggle to find jobs.

The text of the letter is below:

Dear Majority Leader Reid,

We understand that you are currently drafting major jobs legislation to help ease unemployment in the United States during these difficult times. We certainly share your goal of getting Americans back to work and wish to share our ideas with you in the hope that they too may be included in this jobs package.

The statistics are sobering. Currently 15.3 million Americans are officially unemployed. If one adds the number of Americans who are underemployed, what the Department of Labor calls the U-6 unemployment rate, that number jumps to 26.5 million. Meanwhile, there are between 7 and 8 million illegal aliens in the U.S. labor market, many of whom have only recently entered the country.

Despite these numbers, the U.S. government in 2009 failed to enforce our immigration laws. Between fiscal years 2008 and 2009, administrative arrests of illegal aliens dropped 68 percent; criminal arrests of illegal aliens dropped 60 percent; indictments of illegal aliens dropped 58 percent; and convictions of illegal aliens dropped 63 percent.

By taking certain steps to improve our immigration laws, we believe that Congress can help the American worker at little to no cost to the American taxpayer. These steps include:

§ Setting clear enforcement policies that reverse dramatic declines in actions;
§ Permanently reauthorizing E-Verify;
§ Allowing employers to use E-Verify to verify the work authorization of current employees;
§ Reinstating the No-Match Rule, which directs employers to take specific actions upon learning that their employees’ names and social security numbers do not match;
§ Increasing penalties for employers who knowingly hire illegal aliens; and
§ Prohibiting employers from deducting wages paid to illegal alien workers.

While there may be many other good ideas to help reduce unemployment, these commonsense measures would go a long way to putting U.S. workers first and end the unfair competition that arises from the abuse of our immigration system. It is imperative that these provisions be included in any jobs legislation and we are fully committed to working with you towards that end.
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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Hoyer: House can pass healthcare reform bill without public option

Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said Tuesday the House can pass a healthcare bill without a public option. Read more: http://www.thehill.com/homenews/house/72325-hoyer-house-can-pass-healthcare-without-public-option