Happy New Year! We say that each January 1, but what steps are we taking to make the coming year a good one? The book of Hebrews outlines twelve steps to take that can ensure benefit and blessing. Let’s look at all twelve, pray into each one, and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit in the new year.
1. Let us fear lest we fail to rest in Christ.
The promise of God’s rest—His peace , confidence, and salvation—is there for those of us who consider the condition of our own heart, and see our need for a Savior.
Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it. (Heb 4:1)
2. Let us be diligent.
For those of us who have heard the Word of God, comes accountability—deliberate obedience in our decision to follow Christ. Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience. (Heb 4:11)
3. Let us hold fast to our confession.
Recognize the ultimate priesthood of Christ and His position of authority and complete inherent holiness.
Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. (Heb 4:14)
4. Let us draw near to the throne of grace.
The atonement by the High Priest Christ gives us the standing to boldly draw near to the holy throne of God to receive grace and mercy—dispensed for our benefit.
Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.(Heb 4:16)
5. Let us press on to maturity.
Our salvation grows ever more all-encompassing, as we progress from the starting point of our salvation, to the perfection of our salvation through the Holy Spirit working in us.
Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God . . . (Heb 6:1)
6. Let us draw near to the Most Holy Place.
God’s complete sacrifice through Christ gives us the confidence that we are clean before Him and can draw near to Him. He created this path for us to draw near because He desires relationship with us.
. . . [L]et us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience andour bodies washed with pure water. (Heb 10:22)
7. Let us hold fast our confession without wavering.
God has given us complete secure salvation—let us be faithful in living in it fully.
Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. (Heb 10:23)
8. Let us consider one another.
Our relationship with Christ is both individual and corporate—let us remember that God has ordained a Body for the outworking of our faith.
And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works . . . (Heb 10:24)
9. Let us run with endurance the race.
As we “run the race” in our faith life, like a runner who sheds anything unnecessary that would keep them from a successful race, let us put off the weights, the sins, and the mindsets that cause us to lose our focus which is Christ.
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us . . .(Heb 12:1)
10. Let us show gratitude.
We are overwhelmed with the blessing of His Kingdom, so let us serve Him in gratitude and with holy fear.
Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear. (Heb 12:28)
11. Let us go out to Him outside the camp.
Our salvation in Christ brings our focus and allegiance outside of the worldly system and into the camp of the Lord.We need to daily choose to walk away from the world and toward the camp of Christ as we live.
Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach. (Heb 13:13)
12. Let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise.
Instead of the Old Testament animal sacrifices, God calls us to offer up our praises as a sacrifice in the New Covenant. Let us incorporate a constant stream of praise to the Lord in our lives.
Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name. (Heb 13:15)
INTERCESSORS FOR AMERICA | IFApray.org | 800-USA-PRAY (872-7729) | https://www.ifapray.org/promo/12/
A Nevada mother has followed through on her threat to file a civil rights lawsuit against her son’s charter school for refusing to let him opt out of a mandatory class that promotes hostility toward whites as a race.
Democracy Prep at the Agassi Campus (DPAC) forced William Clark “to make professions about his racial, sexual, gender and religious identities in verbal class exercises and in graded, written homework assignments,” creating a hostile environment, the biracial high school student and Gabrielle Clark allege in their federal lawsuit filed Tuesday.
The senior’s statements were “subject to the scrutiny, interrogation and derogatory labeling of students, teachers and school administrators,” who are “still are coercing him to accept and affirm politicized and discriminatory principles and statements that he cannot in conscience affirm.”
The suit also names Democracy Prep Public Schools, the New York-based charter network, and several officials in the local school and network as defendants.
It has nearly 150 pages of exhibits documenting the curriculum in the graduation requirement “Sociology of Change,” which allegedly promotes intersectionality and critical race theory. According to the suit, the curriculum was imposed by a new crop of officials who joined DPAC three years ago – halfway through William’s schooling at DPAC. (The charter network acquired the school in 2016 with help from a federal grant.)
Officials also falsely promised students that their mandatory identity divulsions would be kept private, when in reality their graded assignments would “immediately became visible to all DPAC teachers and administrators” and administrators would sometimes covertly “tune in” to the virtual sessions.
Nevada’s public charter regulator is named as a defendant for its “acquiescence and deliberate indifference to DPAC’s discriminatory and unconstitutional acts and curriculum programming,” the plaintiffs claim. The State Public Charter School Authority recently renewed its contract with DPAC, the network and its Nevada affiliate.
“To my knowledge this is the first lawsuit of its kind,” the Quillette managing editor wrote in the thread. “Keep a close eye on this one, as it could set a precedent and cause a lot of dominoes to start falling.”
It alleges several constitutional violations including compelled speech, viewpoint discrimination, retaliation, invasion of privacy, denial of equal protection and infringement of the establishment clause. The defendants committed “intentional and retaliatory discrimination on the basis of color, race and religion” and gender discrimination.
They even violated state contract law by breaking their own stated promises, according to the suit: “Suddenly after renewing enrollment” this fall, “students were being instructed in a fringe ideology overtly hostile to core personal beliefs about home and church, race and sex, and much else.”
The lawsuit is sponsored by Schoolhouse Rights, a project of the nonprofit International Organization for the Family. “We believe our civil rights case to be the first of its kind across the nation,” the project website says. An educational activist group, No Left Turn, said it connected the Clarks with counsel.
Jonathan O’Brien, the Clarks’ lawyer, invited The College Fix to “talk briefly” about the lawsuit but has not answered a query about what other cases are planned under the project, and on what timeline.
Couldn’t identify the problem ‘until watching their distance learning classes’
Gabrielle Clark, who is black and has two black children, has not been shy about describing her interactions with DPAC officials.
She tweeted last month that Assistant Superintendent Kimberly Wall, now an individual defendant, and DPAC’s house counsel decided to “blow smoke up my ass” at a meeting that followed her lawyer’s warning letter about the mandatory class.
“I knew something was wrong with my kids but I didnt know it was because of the school until watching their distance learning classes,” the mother tweeted Wednesday night, referring to when she saw the disputed curriculum. “That’s when I withdrew my daughter and got the lawyers for my son. I’m not playing with these people.”
The mandatory “Sociology of Change” class has violated the mother’s constitutional due process right to “family integrity and autonomy” by interfering with her “right and covenant to guide and direct the upbringing” of her children, according to the suit. She’s particularly upset that the curriculum explicitly told her children to “unlearn” the “traditional Judeo-Christian principles” she is teaching them.
The curriculum also implied that William’s white father, who died when his son “was too young to know him,” likely physically abused his black mother because he was white. William is so light-skinned that he is usually regarded as white – “the only apparent white boy in his class.”
The suit emphasizes the Clarks’ hardships and William’s aspirations. Gabrielle is “temporarily disabled and unemployed,” and William is “working as a shift manager at a local fast food chain restaurant in order to help his family financially” while learning remotely. He’s applying for colleges now, and his plans to study musicology are threatened by the school’s actions against him.
DPAC’s “conventional civics curriculum” took a hard swing left when Natasha Trivers became the permanent CEO, even though “the generic name and syllabi provided to parents remained the same.”
It now required students to “unlearn” and “fight back” against “oppressive” structures in their religious and family practices, going beyond simple “descriptive or informational” lessons. After they were coerced to divulge identities in “non-private interrogation” sessions, students with disfavored identities were “officially singled out in the programming as inherently problematic.”
According to the suit, “Sociology of Change” teacher Kathryn Bass addressed one class session as “my wonderful social justice warriors!” She told them to determine if any of their identities had “privilege or oppression attached” for a graded assignment.
Though students with supposedly oppressive identities – among them white, male and Christian – were officially allowed not to divulge them in “breakout” sessions with other students, this was functionally a meaningless gesture, because silence would only highlight their status as oppressors:
Defendants’ class exercises forced upon William Clark a deliberately designed, psychologically abusive dilemma: participate in the exercise in violation of his conscience and be branded with a pejorative label; or conscientiously refrain from participation, and suffer isolation from his classmates and be maligned by the same labeling regardless.
Endangering her son in a class where he’s only the apparent white kid
In a later session, Bass cut off class discussion when William and other students “sought to engage critically” with the materials. The teacher failed William and “penalized him for not completing graded identity confession assignments.”
Principal Adam Johnson, also executive director at the Nevada affiliate, issued William a D-minus for the class in spite of DPAC’s own handbook, which explicitly bans D grades because they can veto college admissions offers. This ruined the student’s “good college prospects built on years of hard work and a strong GPA.”
Meetings with “increasingly higher levels” of school and charter network officials, “from September to the present,” produced the same response to the situation: “don’t participate, don’t graduate,” the plaintiffs allege.
Gabrielle warned School Board Chair Joseph Morgan, Johnson and Wall in one email that Bass was “blatantly justifying racism against white people” in a class where her son was the only apparent white student. This puts him in “emotional, psychological, and physical danger.”
Johnson (pictured, right) finally “moderated” his no-compromise attitude in October, “[p]erhaps sensing that litigation might be looming,” and said William could get a C-minus if he completed the “minimum” of class work.
The plaintiffs claim this proffered grade could disqualify him from his colleges of choice – New York University and the Berklee College of Music.
The defendants have rejected every other offer, including a virtual community college class, according to the suit:
These condescending offers, both coercive and retaliatory against constitutionally protected speech and behavior, again forced Plaintiffs to choose between fidelity to conscience and their right to a public education. Defendants to this day offer no accommodation that does not include grade penalization.
William was actually given a D-minus just before Thanksgiving, which not only violated DPAC’s own grading policy but was “intended as a malicious slight” to kneecap his “academic and professional career after high school.”
To add insult to injury, the school suspended William Dec. 16 on the basis that he committed “racism,” the suit claims. He was already in therapy because of the school’s current and anticipated retaliation.
Gabrielle has also suffered “severe emotional distress” and “heart palpitations, weight gain and insomnia” from DPAC’s treatment of her son. “She has watched helplessly as Defendants doubled down again and again on their coercive ideological policy towards her son, threatening his graduation and academic and professional future.”
The school’s actions are even worse because they contradict Trivers’ own public encouragement to students to “stand up for what is right, even if that means pushing back against a school policy.”
The plaintiffs are seeking an emergency order forcing the school to grant William his graduation and degree and give him “an alternative non-discriminatory, non-confessional class that would restore him to good academic standing as he applies for college.”
They want his D-minus grade removed and a ban on the school “implementing or enforcing compulsory, graded identity confessions and derogatory labeling.” The Clarks also seek compensatory and punitive damages and attorney’s fees.
– – –
Greg Piper is the Associate Editor of The College Fix.
Photo “DP Agassi Campus” by DPAC.
Former FBI agent Peter Strzok was hired as an adjunct professor by Georgetown University to teach courses on counterintelligence and national security. The description of the course he is slated to teach states that it is “an upper-class seminar which explores the theory and practice of counterintelligence as a part of the U.S. national security.”
Strzok was fired from the FBI in 2018 for text messages sent to his lover Lisa Page, which contained anti-Trump sentiments. Once the messages went public, there was major concern regarding the FBI's political independence, leading to Strzok's ousting.
Director of Research from the National Association of Scholars David Randall told Campus Reform, “Higher Education prides itself on hiring professors whose prime qualification is hatred of America, such as Angela Davis and William Ayers.”
“Georgetown’s decision to hire Strzok is disgraceful, but typical," he added.
Former FBI Director James Comey was hired by Columbia University Law School as a research scholar and a distinguished fellow. Slated to starting in spring 2021, Comey will lead a seminar called “Lawyers and Leaders.”
In 2017, Comey was fired by President Donald Trump amid his handling of Hillary Clinton’s email investigation. While some have disputed Comey's perceived political leanings, a tweet from Election Day 2020, which included a photo of Comey sporting a Biden-Harris 2020 shirt and coffee mug, shed some light on his views.
MSNBC host and leftist activist Rev. Al Sharpton was hired as a Distinguished Guest Lecturer at Tennessee State University. Starting in 2021, Sharpton will teach courses “in the area of political science grounded in social justice.”
TSU President Glenda Glover called Sharpton an “icon” who has played a critical role in changing history.
“Not only does Rev. Sharpton know American history and the role African Americans have played to shape that history, he has been an intricate piece of it as well. This will be an amazing opportunity for our students to learn from an individual who comes from the pages of the history books they are reading, and to gain knowledge directly from the source.”
Failed Democratic presidential candidate and former mayor of South Bend, Indiana Pete Buttigieg was named a faculty fellow for research by the University of Notre Dame, just before former Vice President Joe Biden announced Buttigieg as his pick to become the next Department of Transportation secretary.
According to the university's announcement, Buttigieg’s research will focus on “how to restore trust in political institutions.” It's unclear, however, if Buttigieg will still serve in this role at Notre Dame, should he become the transportation secretary.
Along with research, the former mayor would be “teaching an interdisciplinary undergraduate course on the importance of trust as understood through different fields.”
Buttigieg's husband, Chasten Buttigieg, was also tapped by Harvard University to work as a fellow in the Ivy League school's Institute of Politics, despite having very little political experience.
Starting in spring 2021, Sen. Kamala Harris’ husband Doug Emhoff will teach “Entertainment Law Disputes,” at Georgetown University Law Center. Emhoff will also be a Distinguished Fellow of Georgetown Law’s Institute for Technology Law and Policy.
Emhoff is currently employed at DLA Piper law firm as a litigator and strategic advisor.
Failed 2020 Democratic presidential candidate and former congressman Beto O'Rourke was hired by Texas State University. The political science chair at Texas State stated that he was "thrilled" after O’Rourke reached out about a teaching position.
O’Rourke will be paid $7,500 for the class, according to a spokesman from the university.
MSNBC host Joy Reid was hired by Howard University as a visiting professor and will teach a course titled, “Covering Race, Gender & Politics in the Digital Age.” Reid will work for the Department of Media, Journalism, and Film starting in 2021.
The course will, “introduce students to concepts of political media coverage, focused on issues of race and gender, and discuss how those topics land in today’s increasingly ideologically siloed, digitally influenced newsroom” The class will also go over “racial roots of journalistic objectivity vs. fairness” as well as “digital disinformation and Black voters.”
Joe Biden and his allies have condemned Donald Trump’s refusal to concede the election as an attack on democracy, the latest, most extreme violation of our most sacred “norms” by a tyrant and a party of traitors in his thrall.
The Supreme Court, lapsing momentarily out of a state of “illegitimacy” to which it had been corrupted by the appointment of a single conservative justice, made clear how low the Republican Party had sunk when it refused Trump’s Texas lawsuit. It’s clear then: Biden won, and it’s time for the Trumpers to accept reality.
But all is not lost. In pious speech after pious speech, Biden is making his commitment to “healing” the country very clear. The vanquished will be treated with mercy, not hostility. There is still room in this country for all of us, liberal and conservative, Republican and Democrat, white and black.
True “healing,” though, requires compromise. It means acknowledging that both sides are at least legitimate. And it is undeniable now, if it was not before Trump’s presidency, that the Left has no desire to coexist with conservatives. Listen carefully and Biden’s “healing” has an antiseptic resonance. It seems that the task is not to unite a bitterly divided country, but to clear out an infection.
The idea that runs through the Left’s behavior the last four years is simply this: Trump and his supporters are like a disease. They’re illegitimate, immoral, criminal, insane, racists who have no place in America. The Left doesn’t even conceal feeling this way anymore.
What did Trump and his supporters do that was so evil? Their transgression, the unforgivable act, was not against “democracy” but against the Left and their rules, most of all that holiest of “norms” which says that conservatism can only exist as controlled opposition. For the Left, this is an unquestionable article of faith. This is why they hate Trump so passionately: unlike the Republican Party, Trump at least gave them a hard time. His rise was an assertion of will by a part of the country that got sick and tired of being despised, when the accepted norm is that they are supposed to celebrate being despised. They dared to say no to the Left and the Left’s plans to transform America.
How did the Left respond? By working constantly to destroy a democratically elected president by any means necessary, while attacking his supporters daily as subhuman scum who deserve to be chased out of society. Now they want to be friends and have us all accept the “peaceful transfer of power.”
What is so extreme about believing that countries should have borders, that people can’t choose their gender, that elections should have rules? The Left talks about normal, decent people who believe what the average person readily accepted as true until roughly 2014 like they are beyond the pale. They constantly raise the spectre of a dangerously out of bounds radical Right that is pushing America’s “norms” to the limit.
Nothing could be further from the truth. We are in this factional crisis because the Left backed the rest of America into a corner with psychotic nonsense. President Trump is their creation.
There’s a reason that the Left sweetens their agenda with lies: if the American people had a chance to appraise it honestly and fairly, they would reject it. The Left is very careful to not let this happen. They dismiss anyone who questions leftist orthodoxy at a given moment in time as a dangerously insane “conspiracy theorist.” They censor and harass dissenters and get them fired from their jobs. While the Left tells America to fear the Proud Boys, everyone silently acknowledges that cities would be on fire right now if this election had gone differently. Not satisfied with Trump’s defeat, whether Trump should be made into a political prisoner is held up by the Left as a matter of serious, fraught debate, rather than the vengeful reflex that it clearly is.
Trump supporters may have to atone as well for the crime of defending themselves against a vicious opposition that wants to disenfranchise them and transform America’s political institutions, culture, and ethnic makeup by force. Biden wants to immediately pass an amnesty for millions of illegal immigrants: a naked power grab, and surely not the last.
This election obviously was not “the most secure in our history,” and it certainly wasn’t fair. We need only look to the media’s brazen effort to prevent the electorate from learning anything about Biden to know that. But who cares what the Bad People think? “Respecting the will of the people is at the heart of our democracy—even when we find those results hard to accept,” says Biden.
It would do more to help the “healing” process if, instead of patronizing us with obvious lies, Biden ditched the creepy, false piety. Here’s a modest suggestion:
To the 70 million people who voted for my opponent, let me be absolutely clear. The candidate you chose was a racist clown, the worst president in our entire history. From now on, open borders is the law. I won’t be around for long to see the consequences of this, but you’re just going to have to deal. Hey, remember that time I blamed you guys for the riots my people were doing? That was fun. Anyway, like I was saying, we’re going to do everything within our power to disenfranchise you, your children, and your children’s children, to turn this country into something you won’t recognize and can’t call home. But I guess you knew that already, didn’t you? That’s why you didn’t vote for me. Well, you lost. Please, for the sake of democracy, shut up and obey.
As far as Biden and his allies are concerned, in this “battle for the soul of America,” the good guys won and the bad guys lost. Trump supporters hear Biden’s platitudes, see his phony, cadaverous smile, and expect nothing but unremitting hostility. And they are right.
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Matthew Boose is a Mt. Vernon fellow of the Center for American Greatness and a staff writer and weekly columnist at the Conservative Institute. His writing has also appeared in the Daily Caller. Follow him on Twitter @matt_boose.
A smart friend of mine who is a moderate liberal asked why I was not recognizing Joe Biden’s victory.
The friend made the case that Mr. Biden had gotten more votes, and historically we recognize the person with the most votes. Normally, we accept the outcome of elections just as we accept the outcomes of sporting events.
So, my friend asked why was 2020 different?
Having spent more than four years watching the left #Resist President Donald Trump and focus entirely on undoing and undermining the 2016 election, it took me several days to understand the depth of my own feelings.
As I thought about it, I realized my anger and fear were not narrowly focused on votes. My unwillingness to relax and accept that the election was over grew out of a level of outrage and alienation unlike anything I had experienced in more than 60 years involvement in public affairs. The challenge is that I — and other conservatives — are not disagreeing with the left within a commonly understood world. We live in alternative worlds.
The left’s world is mostly the established world of the forces who have been dominant for most of my life.
My world is the populist rebellion which believes we are being destroyed, our liberties are being cancelled and our religions are under assault. (Note the new Human Rights Campaign to decertify any religious school which does not accept secular sexual values — and that many Democrat governors have kept casinos open while closing churches though the COVID-19 pandemic.) We also believe other Democrat-led COVID-19 policies have enriched the wealthy while crushing middle class small business owners (some 160,000 restaurants may close).
In this context, let’s talk first about the recent past and the presidency.
In 2016, I supported an outsider candidate, who was rough around the edges and in the Andrew Jackson school of controversial assaults on the old order. When my candidate won, it was blamed on the Russians. We now know (four years later) Hillary Clinton’s own team financed the total lie that fueled this attack.
Members of the FBI twice engaged in criminal acts to help it along — once in avoiding prosecution of someone who had deleted 33,000 emails and had a subordinate use a hammer to physically destroy hard drives, and a second time by lying to FISA judges to destroy Gen. Michael Flynn and spy on then-candidate Donald Trump and his team. The national liberal media aided and abetted every step of the way. All this was purely an attempt to cripple the new president and lead to the appointment of a special counsel — who ultimately produced nothing.
Now, people in my world are told it is time to stop resisting and cooperate with the new president. But we remember that the Democrats wanted to cooperate with Mr. Trump so much that they began talking about his impeachment before he even took office. The Washington Post ran a story on Democrat impeachment plots the day of the inauguration.
In fact, nearly 70 Democratic lawmakers boycotted his inauguration. A massive left-wing demonstration was staged in Washington the day after, where Madonna announced she dreamed of blowing up the White House to widespread applause. These same forces want me to cooperate with their new president. I find myself adopting the Nancy Pelosi model of constant resistance. Nothing I have seen from Mr. Biden since the election offers me any hope that he will reach out to the more than 74 million Americans who voted for President Trump.
So, I am not reacting to the votes so much as to the whole election environment.
When Twitter and Facebook censored the oldest and fourth largest newspaper (founded by Alexander Hamilton) because it accurately reported news that could hurt Mr. Biden’s chances — where were The New York Times and The Washington Post?
The truth of the Hunter Biden story is now becoming impossible to avoid or conceal. The family of the Democrat nominee for president received at least $5 million from an entity controlled by our greatest adversary. It was a blatant payoff, and most Americans who voted for Mr. Biden never heard of it — or were told before the election it was Russian disinformation. Once they did hear of it, 17% said they would have switched their votes, according to a poll by the Media Research Center. That’s the entire election. The censorship worked exactly as intended.
Typically, newspapers and media outlets band together when press freedom is threatened by censorship. Where was the sanctimonious “democracy dies in darkness?” Tragically, The Washington Post is now part of the darkness.
But this is just a start. When Twitter censors four of five Rush Limbaugh tweets in one day, I fear for the country.
When these monolithic Internet giants censor the president of the United States, I fear for the country.
When I see elite billionaires like Mark Zuckerburg are able to spend $400 million to hire city governments to maximize turnout in specifically Democratic districts — without any regard to election spending laws or good governance standards — I fear for the country.
When I read that Apple has a firm rule of never irritating China — and I watch the NBA kowtow to Beijing, I fear for our country.
When I watch story after story about election fraud being spiked — without even the appearance of journalistic due diligence or curiosity — I know something is sick.
The election process itself was the final straw in creating the crisis of confidence which is accelerating and deepening for many millions of Americans.
Aside from a constant stream of allegations of outright fraud, there are some specific outrages — any one of which was likely enough to swing the entire election.
Officials in virtually every swing state broke their states’ own laws to send out millions of ballots or ballot applications to every registered voter. It was all clearly documented in the Texas lawsuit, which was declined by the U.S. Supreme Court based on Texas’ procedural standing — not the merits of the case. That’s the election.
In addition, it’s clear that virtually every swing state essentially suspended normal requirements for verifying absentee ballots. Rejection rates were an order of magnitude lower than in a normal year. In Georgia, rejection rates dropped from 6.5% in 2016 to 0.2% in 2020. In Pennsylvania, it went from 1% in 2016 to .003% in 2020. Nevada fell from 1.6% to .75%. There is no plausible explanation other than that they were counting a huge number of ballots — disproportionately for Mr. Biden — that normally would not have passed muster. That’s the election.
The entire elite liberal media lied about the timeline of the COVID-19 vaccine. They blamed President Trump for the global pandemic even as he did literally everything top scientists instructed. In multiple debates, the moderators outright stated that he was lying about the U.S. having a vaccine before the end of the year (note Vice President Mike Pence received it this week). If Americans had known the pandemic was almost over, that too was likely the difference in the election.
The unanimously never-Trump debate commission spiked the second debate at a critical time in order to hurt President Trump. If there had been one more debate like the final one, it likely would have been pivotal.
This is just the beginning. But any one of those things alone is enough for Trump supporters to think we have been robbed by a ruthless establishment — which is likely to only get more corrupt and aggressive if it gets away with these blatant acts.
For more than four years, the entire establishment mobilized against the elected president of the United States as though they were an immune system trying to kill a virus. Now, they are telling us we are undermining democracy.
You have more than 74 million voters who supported President Trump despite everything — and given the election mess, the number could easily be significantly higher. The truth is tens of millions of Americans are deeply alienated and angry.
If Mr. Biden governs from the left — and he will almost certainly be forced to — that number will grow rapidly, and we will win a massive election in 2022.
Given this environment, I have no interest in legitimizing the father of a son who Chinese Communist Party members boast about buying. Nor do I have any interest in pretending that the current result is legitimate or honorable. It is simply the final stroke of a four-year establishment-media power grab. It has been perpetrated by people who have broken the law, cheated the country of information, and smeared those of us who believe in America over China, history over revisionism, and the liberal ideal of free expression over cancel culture.
I write this in genuine sorrow, because I think we are headed toward a serious, bitter struggle in America. This extraordinary, coordinated four-year power grab threatens the fabric of our country and the freedom of every American.
• To read, hear and watch commentary by Newt Gingrich, the former speaker of the House, visit Gingrich360.com.
In his sermon on Dec. 12, U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke, who serves on the highest court at the Vatican, said that "Marxist materialism" seems to have corrupted America's "governing power," and that "certain forces, inimical to families and to the freedom of nations" are using the COVID-19 pandemic "to advance their evil agenda."
Cardinal Burke, 72, the former Archbishop of St. Louis, added that "these forces" are pushing a so-called "Great Reset," or "new normal," which is "dictated to us by their manipulation of citizens and nations through ignorance and fear."
"Our nation is going through a crisis which threatens its very future as free and democratic," said Burke. "The worldwide spread of Marxist materialism, which has already brought destruction and death to the lives of so many, and which has threatened the foundations of our nation for decades, now seems to seize the governing power over our nation."
"To attain economic gains, we as a nation have permitted ourselves to become dependent upon the Chinese Communist Party, an ideology totally opposed to the Christian foundations upon which families and our nation, remain safe and prosper," said Burke.
As for the "Wuhan virus," the mass media only provide "conflicting information" on a daily basis, he said.
"What is clear, however, is that it has been used by certain forces, inimical to families and to the freedom of nations, to advance their evil agenda," said the cardinal.
"These forces tell us that we are now the subjects of the so-called ‘Great Reset,’ the ‘new normal,’ which is dictated to us by their manipulation of citizens and nations through ignorance and fear," he added.
"Now, we are supposed to find in a disease and its prevention the way to understand and direct our lives," he said, "rather than in God and in His plan for our salvation."
As these troubles afflict us, the church is also infected, said the cardinal. "[O]ur holy Mother Church, the spotless bride of Christ, in which Christ is ever at work for our eternal redemption, is beset by reports of moral corruption, especially in matters of the sixth and seventh commandments, which seem to increase by the day."
"[T]he Church falsely wants to accommodate Herself to the world, instead of calling the world to conversion in obedience to the divine law written on every human heart and revealed in fullness in the redemptive, incarnation of God the Son," said Burke.
He continued, "At a time when we need to be close to one another in Christian love, worldly forces would isolate us and have us believe that we are alone and dependent upon secular forces which would make us slaves to their godless and murderous agenda."
"Yes, our hearts are understandably heavy, but Christ ... will never be unfaithful to his promises," said Burke. "He will never abandon us. Let us not be beguiled by the forces of the world and by false prophets. Let us not abandon Christ and seek our salvation in places where it never can be found."
The Human Rights Campaign—a large, influential LGBTQ advocacy group— recently released a policy brief with recommendations for a Biden administration, and the suggestions are alarming.
The organization’s “Blueprint for Positive Change 2020” describes itself as “a comprehensive list of 85 individual policy recommendations aimed at improving the lives of LGBTQ people.”
But the Human Rights Campaign fails to mention just how much these suggestions for former Vice President Joe Biden, if implemented, would infringe on the rights of religious believers, conservatives, and Americans in general, all under the guise of helping a community that they claim is still marginalized.
One of the more alarming suggestions from the organization’s proposal concerns accreditation for religious schools and universities, stating:
Language regarding accreditation of religious institutions of higher education in the Higher Education Opportunity Act could be interpreted to require accrediting bodies to accredit religious institutions that discriminate or do not meet science-based curricula standards.
The Department of Education should issue a regulation clarifying that this provision, which requires accreditation agencies to ‘respect the stated mission’ of religious institutions, does not require the accreditation of religious institutions that do not meet neutral accreditation standards including nondiscrimination policies and scientific curriculum requirements.
From the sound of it, the Human Rights Campaign essentially is calling for faith-based education—from K-12 schools to colleges and universities—to adopt the campaign’s positions on gender identity, same-sex marriage, transgender transitioning, and more, or fail to be accredited.
Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, says it’s clear that faith-based education facilities are “to be coerced into the sexual revolution or stripped of accreditation.”
The blueprint calls this “science-based curricula,” but we’ve seen this movie before: What leftist activists call science, conservatives call a distortion of biology. It’s just a way for the activists to claim credibility for identity politics.
It sounds like the Human Rights Campaign is co-opting this moment—with a liberal likely becoming president—essentially to push faith-based education facilities out of the marketplace by forcing them either to abandon their beliefs or lose their ability to legally “compete.”
Mohler again summarizes this aptly on his website: “This would mean abandoning biblical standards for teaching, hiring, admissions, housing, and student life. It would mean that Christian schools are no longer Christian.”
Let’s hope that if a Biden administration even attempted to follow this policy suggestion, enough faith-based institutions would fight back and it would fail.
Still, the effort would be costly, and the attempt to force religious schools out of the marketplace should never happen, given the authoritative protections of the First Amendment.
The Human Rights Campaign’s blueprint makes other suggestions that are equally frustrating because, like the one about accreditation, they stem from a worldview that not only favors identity politics over ideology or beliefs, but acts as if their LGBTQ beliefs should trump everyone else’s.
Policy in this country should reflect core American values of equality and freedom, not entitlement for select groups.
The blueprint suggests that a Biden administration “appoint openly-LGBTQ justices, judges, executive officials and ambassadors.” For starters, some judges and executive employees already are openly LGBTQ.
The proposal also flips the supposed aim of the movement, which is to accept people for who they are—regardless of faith, sex, gender, race, creed, or sexual orientation—to giving preference to people specifically because of their sexual orientation.
The blueprint also suggests that Biden establish “an interagency working group to protect and support LGBTQ rights globally.” This sounds nice, but there’s only one problem: It’s already illegal to discriminate in the United States based on a person’s sexual orientation, so there’s no need to pluck out this group and give it special protections.
These policy suggestions are ignorant, shortsighted, and just plain false. By suggesting LGBTQ individuals need extra care, they undermine cases such as Bostock v. Clayton County that already made it illegal to discriminate on the basis of gender identity.
By suggesting LGBTQ rights need to be protected more, the blueprint perpetuates the myth that somehow in the freest country in the world, with more sexual parity than almost anywhere else, LGBTQ individuals remain marginalized and disenfranchised. There’s little evidence to show that’s the case.
The Human Rights Campaign has enormous influence. It’s one thing to stand up for equality in a giant policy brief. But it’s quite another to use that brief as a guise to push religious bigotry, such as by suggesting that faith-based schools lose accreditation if they don’t fall lockstep in line with the newest LGBTQ orthodoxy.
The Human Rights Campaign’s “Blueprint for Positive Change” does its community members no favors by gaslighting them into believing that it’s legal to discriminate against them and suggesting that all will be well when they receive entitlement, not just equality.
Few groups have pushed—and received—more recognition for equality, and then some, than the LGBTQ community. To suggest otherwise is disingenuous and blatant identity politics.
The time has come for religious parents to take their children back from the state.
In a report released earlier this year from the American Enterprise Institute, Lyman Stone tracked the history of religious belief, behavior, and association in the United States since the Founding. It’s a magisterial work, and I encourage readers to download the report here and peruse it for themselves.
Stone’s research helps us to understand the decline of religious faith in America over the past 60 years. Secularization is, to be sure, a hugely overdetermined development in American history, and just about everyone has a theory about how it’s happened and why. Religious conservatives would probably cite the loosening of the country’s morals that began in the ’60s and ’70s. Secular progressives might mutter something about the onward march of “Science” and “Reason” over time. But the data seem to show that the main driver of secularization in the United States has been the acceleration of government spending on education and government control over the curricular content taught in schools.
Here our secular progressive might raise his head again, perhaps feeling a bit smug about this finding. “See!”, he says. “Children used to be deprived of education and the life of the mind! They were stuck in the doldrums of ignorance and squalor before the benevolent hand of the state reached down and lifted them up into the world of literacy and critical thought. All that was needed was a little education to free them from hokey superstitions.”
It’s a simple theory, befitting the minds of those who have historically espoused it. But it’s falsified by the data. Stone cites the seminal work of Raphael Franck and Laurence Iannaccone on this point, who meticulously tracked religious behavior over time in their own work. According to Franck and Iannaccone, “higher educational attainment did not predict lower religiosity: More and less educated people are similarly religious.” Nor did they “find that industrialized, urban life reduces religiosity: A more urban and industrialized population was associated with greater religiosity.” The link between intellectual progression/modernization and secularization is non-existent. As Stone summarizes:
Theories that religion has declined because urbanization is hostile to religiosity — or because modern, educated people are inherently skeptical of religion — get no support in the actual historic record.
It turns out that religiosity is usually determined very early in life. All the data suggest that, by and large, kids brought up in religious households stay religious and kids who aren’t, don’t. Consequently, childhood religiosity has been, and remains, the most important indicator of America’s religious trajectory. The story of religious decline in America is not the story of adults consciously rejecting the faith of their forefathers: It’s the story of each generation receiving a more secular upbringing than the generation preceding it. What accounts for this secularization of childhood over time? Taxpayer dollars.
Childhood religiosity was heavily affected by government spending on education and, to a lesser degree, government spending on old-age pensions. Thus, while more educated people were not less religious, societies that spent more public money on education were less religious. It is not educational attainment per se that reduces religiosity, but government control of education and, to a lesser extent, government support for retirement.
Researchers originally tried to explain the relationship between government control of education and secularization by putting it down to the state’s increasing willingness to care for the needs and wants of its citizens in a comprehensive way — a task traditionally carried out by religious institutions. Once people are no longer beholden to a church/synagogue/mosque for their material well-being — or so the theory goes — they see little reason to stay.
But this theory just doesn’t account for the data we have. As Stone observes, it’s belied by the fact “that the vast majority of declining religiosity can be attributed to changes in educational policy, rather than welfare generally.”
So how do we explain this link between education policy and religious belief given that academic attainment itself isn’t a factor? It’s quite simple, really. Children learn more at school than reading, writing, and arithmetic. They imbibe a whole set of implied assumptions about what’s important in life. By excluding religious instruction from public schools, the government-run education system tacitly teaches students that religious commitments are not a first-order priority in life. Faith in God becomes a sort of optional weekend hobby akin to playing tennis or video games. Christ and Moses are treated by teachers and administrators like weapons or drugs — confiscated upon discovery.
In this way, the hierarchy of values communicated both explicitly and implicitly to students in American high schools excludes religious claims from the outset. College, career, and popularity become the existential targets toward which the arrow of each student’s soul is aimed by bow-wielding commissars across the country. In a context such as this, secularization becomes ineluctable. The New Testament itself says that religious belief is shaped more by the places we look for praise and validation than by naked ratiocinations: “How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another, and you’re not looking for the glory which comes from the one and only God?” (John 5:44). But the secular public high school dispenses validation and praise according to different criteria than any of the major faiths. This is why government control of education has resulted in religious decline. As Stone writes:
. . . the content of education matters. Evidence that education reduces religiosity is fairly weak: American religiosity rose considerably from 1800 until the 1970s, despite rapidly rising educational attainment. But the evidence that specifically secular education might reduce religiosity is more compelling. Indeed, statistically, most researchers who have explored long-run change in religiosity find that education-related variables, which I have argued are a proxy for secular education, can explain nearly the totality of change in religiosity.
That last point bears repeating. Most researchers have found that “education-related variables . . . can explain nearly the totality of change in religiosity.” For religious conservatives who care about the fate of American culture, it cannot be emphasized enough that education is the whole ball game. All other policy areas amount to little more than tinkering around the edges. How we got to a place where this is the case is a sad story in and of itself (and one that I told in part here). Nevertheless, it remains the case that public schools often are not a smooth fit for conservative families, especially religious ones. Even worse than that, we can now see signs that the ideology imposed upon government-educated children is changing. What used to be the state-imposed orthodoxy of benign agnosticism is being replaced by a full-blown intersectional pseudo-religion with its own priests, prophets, saints, and martyrs.
The time has come for religious parents to take their children back from the state. It simply will not do anymore for faithful Americans to drop their sons and daughters off at the curbside every morning for the government to collect as if they were taking out the trash. As I’ve written before, a broader reconsideration of public schooling will not be cheap. It will require, among other things, the establishment of charitable private education co-operatives if we’re to heed the dictates of the world’s great faiths by keeping the interests of the poor at the forefront of our minds. But the only real road to religious revival is the one that begins with each parent’s first step out of the public school’s doors.
A forensic audit of Dominion Voting Systems machines and software in Michigan showed that they were designed to create fraud and influence election results, a data firm said Monday.
“We conclude that the Dominion Voting System is intentionally and purposefully designed with inherent errors to create systemic fraud and influence election results,” Russell Ramsland Jr., co-founder of Allied Security Operations Group, said in a preliminary report.
“The system intentionally generates an enormously high number of ballot errors. The electronic ballots are then transferred for adjudication. The intentional errors lead to bulk adjudication of ballots with no oversight, no transparency, and no audit trail. This leads to voter or election fraud. Based on our study, we conclude that The Dominion Voting System should not be used in Michigan. We further conclude that the results of Antrim County should not have been certified,” he added.
Ramsland, a former Reagan administration official who has worked for NASA, and others from the group examined Dominion products in Antrim County earlier this month as part of an ongoing case.
The team inspected and performed forensic duplication on the county’s election management server, which was running Dominion Democracy Suite 5.5.3-002, compact flash cards used by local precincts in their Dominion ImageCast system, USB memory sticks used by Dominion Voter Assist Terminals, and USB memory sticks used for the poll book. They used X-Ways Forensics and other tools including Blackbag-Blacklight Forensic Software, and Virtual Box.
13th Circuit Judge Kevin Elsenheimer approved the forensic examination in Bailey v. Antrim County, which alleges the infamous vote flip county officials reported last month may have not been the result of human error, as officials had alleged.
Elsenheimer earlier Monday agreed to let the report on the examination be published.
Ramsland noted that Antrim County officials first reported on Election Night that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden received, out of 12,423 votes, nearly 7,800.
Two days later, they said President Donald Trump actually won the county, receiving nearly 9,800 votes out of over 17,000 cast.
But on Nov. 21, the officials again updated the figures, removing about 1,300 votes from Biden.
Ramsland said the tabulation log for the forensic examination of the server for the county showed 15,676 individual events. Of those, some 68 percent were recorded errors.
“These errors resulted in overall tabulation errors or ballots being sent to adjudication. This high error rates proves the Dominion Voting System is flawed and does not meet state or federal election laws,” he wrote.
“A staggering number of votes required adjudication. This was a 2020 issue not seen in previous election cycles still stored on the server. This is caused by intentional errors in the system. The intentional errors lead to bulk adjudication of ballots with no oversight, no transparency, or audit trail. Our examination of the server logs indicates that this high error rate was incongruent with patterns from previous years. The statement attributing these issues to human error is not consistent with the forensic evaluation, which points more correctly to systemic machine and/or software errors. The systemic errors are intentionally designed to create errors in order to push a high volume of ballots to bulk adjudication,” he added later.
Ramsland was hired by William Bailey, the plaintiff in the court case.
Gary Miliefsky, a founding member of the Department of Homeland Security and publisher of Cyber Defense Magazine, told The Epoch Times that Ramsland and his team “have the cybersecurity and forensic capabilities and expertise that cannot be dismissed.”
“In fact, looking at their team, their patents, their experience, we now have a credible analysis that as I predicted, the Algorithms being used in the Dominion Voting System is intentionally and purposefully designed to create systematic fraud and influence election results and in this case, not in the favor of President Trump,” he added.
In a separate declaration filed by Bailey’s lawyers, Michigan resident Gustavo Delfino said he was involved in a 2004 election in his native Venezuela. He said he witnessed strange events and later found discrepancies involving Smartmatic computers. He said he was alarmed when he learned the technology was being used in the Nov. 3 presidential election and said the pattern of so-called glitches and voting machines being connected to the Internet mirrored what happened in his country nearly two decades ago.
Spokespersons for Antrim County and Dominion didn’t respond to a request for comment.
Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, a Democrat, said in a statement after the report was released: “Let’s be clear: Michigan’s Nov. 3 general election in Michigan and across the country was the most secure in the nation’s history. There continues to be no evidence of widespread fraud.”
Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel added: “Oftentimes, a party will hire an expert witness to support the conclusion that the party wants or needs to reach. It’s why we give the other parties in a lawsuit a chance to depose the expert and challenge their qualifications in court. Anyone can have an opinion, but it doesn’t necessarily mean the opinion is based on fact or science.”
Officials alleged that the team behind the audit doesn’t have expertise in election administration and technology. In a court filing, Michigan Elections Director Jonathan Brater said the report “makes a series of unsupported conclusions, ascribes motives of fraud and obfuscation to processes that are easily explained as routine election procedures or error corrections, and suggests without explanation that elements of election software not used in Michigan are somehow responsible for tabulation or reporting errors that are either nonexistent or easily explained.”
Erik Grill, an assistant attorney general, told the judge during the hearing on Monday morning that the preliminary report was “inaccurate, incomplete, and misleading.” Haider Kazim, an attorney for the county, said it contained several errors the county believes were based on “faulty assumptions and incorrect assumptions.”
Tennessee State University announced it has hired MSNBC host and progressive activist Rev. Al Sharpton as a Distinguished Guest Lecturer.
Beginning in January 2021, Sharpton will teach “in the area of political science grounded in social justice during the academic term.” Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover said that Sharpton has been an important part of shaping history.
The announcement of Sharpton’s new position posted on the university's website calls him an “icon,” who “brings wealth” to politics.
Glover expressed the university’s excitement, stating that Sharpton will be able to provide insight for the students: “We are excited to have the Rev. Al Sharpton, a civil rights icon, serve as a distinguished guest lecturer at our university.”
“His presence means our students will be able to engage with a piece of history at a time when his insight is more relevant than ever before," she added.
Glover added that he has helped shape history and that his role at the university will be a great opportunity for students to learn.
“Not only does Rev. Sharpton know American history and the role African Americans have played to shape that history, he has been an intricate piece of it as well. This will be an amazing opportunity for our students to learn from an individual who comes from the pages of the history books they are reading, and to gain knowledge directly from the source," Glover continued.
Sharpton stated he is honored to be a part of the university and will discuss issues that affect the Black community in class.
“The course I will teach will examine political science and social justice from the lens of recent cases—many of which I have directly worked on as a civil rights leader and it will look at shifting politics in the new administration relating to issues directly impacting Black communities," Sharpton said.
In the late 1980s, Sharpton spoke in support of Tawana Brawley case, a woman who accused a group of white men of kidnap and rape. Brawley, who also accused the men of writing racial slurs on her body, was dismissed by a grand jury when they determined she fabricated the story. In 1998, county prosecutor Steven Pagones won a $65,000 defamation lawsuit against Sharpton, who had accused him of being one of the attackers.
Director of Research at the National Association of Scholars discussed the university hiring Sharpton with Campus Reform stating, “Steven Pagones successfully sued Al Sharpton for defaming his character in the course of perpetrating the Tawana Brawley rape hoax. Sharpton has never apologized to Pagones. Sharpton is morally responsible for inciting Roland Smith to murder seven people at Freddy's Fashion Mart--although he managed to avoid legal liability.
“Any American organization that allows Sharpton to be associated with it, without condemning him for his reprehensible behavior, itself deserves the severest moral condemnation. Tennessee State University (TSU) has now joined MSNBC and the Democratic Party, among other American organizations, in this roster of shame. The only silver lining of TSU's action is that it allows Tennessee's taxpayers to know what the higher education establishment means by ‘political science grounded in social justice.’”
Campus Reform reached out to TSU for comment but was referred to the announcement on the school's website.
Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @mn_turn
AG Pax¬ton: Six States Join Texas in Law-suit Defend¬ing the Secu¬ri¬ty of the 2020 Election
December 10, 2020 | Press Release
Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Utah have formally joined Texas in its Supreme Court suit against Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin—four battleground states who ran illegal and unconstitutional elections. The joining states agree with Texas: the defendant states exploited the COVID-19 pandemic to justify unlawfully enacting last-minute changes and ignoring both federal and state election laws, thus skewing the results of the 2020 General Election.
“Texas continues to lead the fight to protect election security and integrity, and today I gladly welcome Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Utah to this historic endeavor. By flouting state and federal election laws, the defendant battleground states have tainted the integrity of citizens’ votes across the entire nation,” said Attorney General Paxton. “To restore trust in the integrity of our election process, we must tirelessly defend its security and hold accountable those who discarded our Constitution for their own convenience. Texas is proud to have these states by its side in shining the bright light of justice.”
A 2020 Election Redo in 4 States? Here Are the Details About Texas Lawsuit
Dec 8th, 2020 4 Hans A. von Spakovsky
In a nutshell, Texas is saying these four states’ elections were unconstitutional—and therefore, invalid.
The complaint goes into great detail describing what happened in each state.
As Texas points out, these issues will likely be repeated in future elections.
The state of Texas has filed an unprecedented motion with the U.S. Supreme Court, asking for leave to file a complaint with the court against the states of Pennsylvania, Georgia, Michigan, and Wisconsin over the 2020 presidential election. The motion alleges that changes made in election rules governing absentee ballots in those states by “non-legislative actors” violated the Constitution and “cumulatively preclude knowing who legitimately won the 2020 election and threaten to cloud all future elections.”
In a nutshell, Texas is saying these four states’ elections were unconstitutional—and therefore, invalid. The Lone Star State’s complaint, filed by state Attorney General Ken Paxton, asks that Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin conduct new elections to determine their electors for the Electoral College.
The motion filed by Texas includes the 41-page complaint and a 35-page brief making the legal arguments for why the Supreme Court should grant approval of the filing of the lawsuit, since Article III, Section 2 of the Constitution gives the Supreme Court—not lower federal courts—original jurisdiction over “controversies between two or more States.”
The complaint goes into great detail describing what happened in each state.
Pennsylvania: The complaint accuses Pennsylvania Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar of, among other things, “without legislative approval, unilaterally abrogating” Pennsylvania statutes that require “signature verification for absentee or mail-in ballots.” These changes were “not ratified” by the Pennsylvania legislature.
Georgia: Similarly, the complaint describes how Georgia’s Secretary of State, Brad Raffensperger, also “without legislative approval, unilaterally abrogated Georgia’s statute governing the signature verification process for absentee ballots.”
Michigan: The complaint states that Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson “abrogated Michigan election statutes related to absentee ballot applications and signature verification.”
Wisconsin: Lastly, the Wisconsin’s elections commission made similar changes in state laws without the permission of the legislature that “weakened, or did away with, established security procedures put in place by the Wisconsin legislature to ensure absentee ballot integrity.”
The complaint catalogues these and numerous other changes made in all four states by government officials, not the state legislatures.
According to Texas, these “amendments to States’ duly enacted election laws” violated the Electors Clause of the Constitution, Art. II, § 1, Cl. 2, which vests “state legislatures with plenary authority regarding the appointment of presidential electors.”
In other words, while the state legislatures have the authority to set the rules for presidential elections in their states—and thus could have made all of these changes if they had wanted to—other government officials in those states, including judges, did not have the constitutional authority to make these changes.
Second, the complaint describes how voters in different parts of these states were treated differently. For example, election officials in Philadelphia and Allegheny Counties in Pennsylvania set up a “cure process” for voters in those jurisdictions whose absentee ballots did not comply with state legal requirements. Those noncompliant ballots should have been rejected because state law does not allow such a procedure.
As a result of this behavior and similar behavior in other states, there was “more favorable treatment allotted to votes” in areas “administered by local government under Democrat control.”
This differential treatment, says Texas, violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. It cites the Supreme Court’s 2000 decisions in Bush v. Gore, which “prohibits the use of differential standards in the treatment and tabulation of ballots within a state.”
Additionally, the one-person, one-vote principle “requires counting valid votes and not counting invalid votes.” This damaged Texas because in “the shared enterprise of the entire nation electing the president and vice president, equal protection violations in one state can and do adversely affect and diminish the weight of votes cast in states that lawfully abide by the election structure set forth in the Constitution.”
Finally, Texas argues that these states violated “substantive due process” requirements because their election practices—through both “intentional failure to follow election law as enacted by” their state legislatures as well as “unauthorized acts by state election officials and their designees in local government”—reached “the point of patent and fundamental unfairness.” The states “acted unconstitutionally to lower their election standards… with the express intent to favor their candidate for president.”
Texas argues that all of these unconstitutional actions changed the outcome of the presidential election, citing the actual vote totals in each state and the number of ballots affected. The state is asking for a declaratory judgement that the administration of the election by Pennsylvania, Georgia, Michigan, and Wisconsin violated the Constitution; that their Electoral College votes cannot be counted; and to order that these states “conduct a special election to appoint presidential electors.”
If the states have already appointed their presidential electors, Texas asks that their legislatures be directed “to appoint a new set of presidential electors in a manner that does not violate the Electors Clause and the Fourteenth Amendment, or to appoint no presidential electors at all.”
This is an unprecedented lawsuit, and the Supreme Court may be extremely leery and disinclined to take any actions regardless of the merits that could upset the results of a presidential election. Texas does a good job of describing what happened in each state and why the actions of government officials making unauthorized, unilateral changes in the rules may have violated the Constitution and affected the outcome of the election.
But by almost any measure, this is the legal equivalent of a Hail Mary pass. While the questions raised are serious ones, it is unlikely that the Supreme Court will address them at this time. As Texas points out, these issues will likely be repeated in future elections. If the Supreme Court does not take up these issues now, they may well have another opportunity in the future.
This piece originally appeared in The Daily Signal
George Gascon, the Los Angeles District Attorney backed by billionaire George Soros, has vowed to help criminal illegal aliens avoid deportation by reducing penalties, jail-time, and prosecutions against them.
Gascon was sworn in this week and immediately ended cash bail for suspects charged with crimes as well as the death penalty for prosecutors to use against defendants. Similar to those changes, Gascon has previously stated that he will set up two justice systems for criminal defendants — those who are American citizens and those who are foreign nationals
In October, Gascon’s campaign released a detailed plan that would use the power of the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office to help criminal illegal aliens avoid arrest and deportation by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency.
As part of the plan, Gascon has proposed factoring in “severe collateral consequences in charging decisions, plea negotiations, and use of diversion programs” for criminal illegal aliens so as to avoid arrest and deportation by ICE.
“Local criminal justice actors must be careful not to become part of a pipeline to deportation in a dysfunctional immigration system … the DA must also strive to limit unnecessary exposure to immigration enforcement,” Gascon’s plan continues:
Immigration status can have a disproportionate adverse impact on noncitizen defendants because of federal immigration law implications. A core duty of prosecutors is to ensure that the punishment fits the crime. As such, it is incumbent upon the prosecutor to be aware of and mitigate collateral consequences, particularly when they are more severe than the punishment for the crime itself. Indeed, in Padilla v. Kentucky 130 S.Ct. 1473 (2010), the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that immigration consequences of a conviction for immigrants can be profound and warrant consideration by the prosecution as well as the defense. [Emphasis added]
An immigration-informed approach includes working with defense attorneys to obtain a defendant’s immigration status–without requiring onerous proof or documentation – and implementing training programs to increase awareness of immigration law, with the goal of equipping prosecutors to exercise discretion in achieving immigration-neutral charges and plea bargaining. The basic principle guiding this approach is that the full range of punitive consequences – both direct and collateral–should be roughly equivalent for citizen and noncitizen offenders. [Emphasis added]
Likewise, Gascon has proposed reducing “prosecution of low-level, ‘quality of life’ offenses” such as drug possession, driving without a license, and public urination, so that illegal aliens who are arrested for these crimes do not face what Gascon deems “outsized immigration ramifications, due to the booking and fingerprint sharing between local law enforcement and immigration authorities following an arrest.”
Even further, Gascon plans to “limit exposure to immigration enforcement” for criminal illegal aliens by reducing jail-time so that suspects are booked and almost immediately released.
According to Gascon, “unnecessary time spent in jail” increases “the risk of immigration enforcement, as the booking process allows ICE to identify and pursue immigrant detainees.”
Such changes to how the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office handles criminal illegal aliens would be some of the first of their kind enforced in the United States. District Attorneys in other Democrat-controlled cities have suggested reducing charges for foreign nationals so they could potentially avoid being deported, though such policies are not official protocol.
Already, California is a sanctuary state for illegal aliens, shielding them from arrest and deportation by ICE agents even if they are charged or convicted with crimes, including violent crimes. The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Office enforces a strict sanctuary city policy that effectively bans officials from handing over criminal illegal aliens to ICE.
Estimates from 2019 have suggested that about 100 criminal illegal aliens are released from jail in Los Angeles County every day. Federal data has found that about 8-in-10 criminal illegal aliens freed by a sanctuary city go on to commit additional crimes.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.
The State of Texas filed a lawsuit directly with the U.S. Supreme Court shortly before midnight on Monday challenging the election procedures in Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin on the grounds that they violate the Constitution.
Texas argues that these states violated the Electors Clause of the Constitution because they made changes to voting rules and procedures through the courts or through executive actions, but not through the state legislatures. Additionally, Texas argues that there were differences in voting rules and procedures in different counties within the states, violating the Constitution’s Equal Protection Clause. Finally, Texas argues that there were “voting irregularities” in these states as a result of the above.
In 2020, Republicans were out-organized and out-spent. Being out-spent isn't fatal. Republicans were out-spent in 2016. But being out-organized frequently is. There's a huge difference between spending money on ad buys and consultants, and spending it to change the structural environment of the election.
The Capital Research Center has this deep dive into what the Center for Technology and Civil Life did in just Georgia. It starts with this:
This year, left-leaning donors Mark Zuckerberg and wife Priscilla Chan gave $350 million to an allegedly “nonpartisan” nonprofit, the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL), which in turn re-granted the funds to thousands of governmental election officials around the country to “help” them conduct the 2020 election.
What these grants did was build structural bias into the 2020 election where structural bias matters most – in densely populated urban cores. It converted election offices in key jurisdictions with deep reservoirs of Biden votes into Formula One turnout machines. The hundreds of millions of dollars built systems, hired employees from activist groups, bought equipment and radio advertisements. It did everything that street activists could ever dream up to turn out Biden votes if only they had unlimited funding.
Michael Patrick Leahy at Breitbart was doing a lot of important work on the the Center for Technology and Civil Life that hasn't gotten much attention.
Most of Joe Biden’s 221,751 vote margin gain in Georgia, compared to Hillary Clinton’s performance in 2016, came from three metropolitan Atlanta counties that received more than $15 million from the Mark Zuckerberg-funded Center for Technology and Civic Life (CTCL) “safe elections” project.
Those three counties — Cobb, Fulton, and Gwinnett–accounted for 168,703 of Biden’s 221,751 vote margin gain, or 76 percent.
The Mark Zuckerberg-funded Center for Technology and Civic Life (CTCL) announced on Tuesday that it will provide additional “safe elections” grants to county election departments in Georgia in advance of the two U.S. Senate runoff elections that will be held on January 5, 2021.
As Breitbart News reported last month, former Barack Obama campaign manager David Plouffe worked for the Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative from 2017 through 2020:
Meanwhile a ton of money also flowed into Stacey Abrams' operation which is currently under investigation, the operation, not the money.
The voting rights organization Stacey Abrams founded in 2018 after losing a close gubernatorial election raised $34.5 million in just 39 days from late October to the last week of November, funneling a chunk of the money into helping Democratic candidates in key races.
The $34.5 million is about what the group had raised the previous two years.
The common denominator with Fair Fight and CTCL is that both set out to alter the structural electoral environment, rather than just throwing money at ads.
All of that work was out in the open, yet Republicans, taking Georgia for granted, were caught by surprise. And Georgia, as I keep saying, is a testbed for the real deal, which is Texas. That's their big endgame. Take Texas, transform its electoral system, and secure every presidential election until doomsday.
Democrats went into 2020 with a lot of money but, more importantly, a plan. Republicans have a lot of infighting, but so far, no plan.
Scrub and spray everything with chemicals, bathe in Purell, mask up, stand no nearer to anyone else than six feet, stay away from crowds, douse yourself with alcohol, wash your hands and face raw, protect yourself from germs at all costs.
Some nations are closed completely. No one in or out.
We panic about “cases” even when they say nothing about severe consequences. Avoidance and finally suppression are the watchwords of the day, for a virus that is relatively mild by any historical standard, as Holman Jenkins just explained:
U.S. government scientists now estimate that 40% of cases are asymptomatic and 80% of symptomatic cases are mild—in short, 88% of subjects don’t know they are infected or have no great incentive to find out if they are suffering from Covid or some more familiar bug.
We could also mention the 99.9% survival rate, and that doesn’t consider the wildly disproportionate risk between the sick and healthy.
Is this an experiment? Yes, and likely a deadly one.
What precisely are we doing to ourselves? What are we doing to children?
Early in the pandemic, doctors went on the national stage to frame it up clearly: we are wrecking our immune systems and making ourselves vulnerable to more serious pathogens later.
The great discovery that viruses must be owned to be controlled was an achievement of 20th century cell biology. It’s the Godfather rule: keep your friends close but your enemies closer. It’s counterintuitive, which is precisely why it took thousands of years to discover, and a century to educate people about the problem of the conduct of public health.
But this year, starting soon after lockdowns, this wisdom strangely seemed to have vanished from the public mind. Did we just succumb to a strange anti-science hysteria?
Who knows, but if you read the New York Times carefully, and look past the insufferable political bias, what you find is something that will shock many people.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, the world is unwittingly conducting what amounts to the largest immunological experiment in history on our own children. We have been keeping children inside, relentlessly sanitizing their living spaces and their hands and largely isolating them. In doing so, we have prevented large numbers of them from becoming infected or transmitting the virus. But in the course of social distancing to mitigate the spread, we may also be unintentionally inhibiting the proper development of children’s immune systems….Immunological memory and tolerance learned during childhood serves as the basis for immunity and health throughout adulthood.
Just so we are clear, we are doing something to children that will affect their immune systems for the rest of their lives? That’s what the writer says.
The article then continues and actually invokes the great taboo word of our age: exposure. It’s good. Exposure is good. It is necessary. It is needed. Not bad. Good.
However, for memory T cells to become functionally mature, multiple exposures may be necessary, particularly for cells residing in tissues such as the lung and intestines, where we encounter numerous pathogens. These exposures typically and naturally occur during the everyday experiences of childhood — such as interactions with friends, teachers, trips to the playground, sports — all of which have been curtailed or shut down entirely during efforts to mitigate viral spread. As a result, we are altering the frequency, breadth and degree of exposures that are crucial for immune memory development.
Okay, now it is time for the writer to invoke a bit of memorable scientific knowledge. It’s a beautiful paragraph with a stunning opening sentence.
Failing to train our immune systems properly can have serious consequences. When laboratory mice raised in nearly sterile conditions were housed together in the same cage with pet mice raised in standard conditions, some of the laboratory mice succumbed to pathogens that the pet mice were able to fight off. Additional studies of the microbiome — the bacteria that normally inhabit our intestines and other sites — have shown that mice raised in germ-free conditions or in the presence of antibiotics had reduced and altered immune responses to many types of pathogens. These studies suggest that for establishing a healthy immune system, the more diverse and frequent the encounters with antigens, the better.
Remember that absolutely public hysteria about alleged peanut allergies to the point that if we ate one on a plane people could die? Check this out:
Introduction of peanuts to infants resulted in reduced incidence of peanut allergy, while avoidance had the opposite effect of promoting unwanted, severe allergic immune responses to peanuts.
The article concludes with a perfunctory endorsement of masking (poor kids!), else it wouldn’t have been published, but ends with this riposte:
The sooner we can safely restore the normal experiences of childhood, interacting with other children and — paradoxically — with pathogens and diverse microorganisms, the better we can ensure their ability to thrive as adults in this changing world.
Really, all this is something my mother knows. She taught it to me. Her mother taught it to her. They were all taught it in school. The knowledge has not been deprecated. It just strangely evaporated. Or perhaps censored. I don’t know. I do know this article is a welcome relief from the poppycock of mysophobia that has taken over the public square.
Imagine wrecking the immune systems of children for a lifetime for a disease that poses almost zero risk to their lives. I call that immoral. Deeply so. People will be suffering for many decades due to this bout of anti-science hysteria.
It takes one’s breath away to contemplate the scale of the destruction these lockdowns and quarantines have caused, particularly among the most vulnerable. It’s not just depression, poverty, and demoralization of living in the midst of near-universal violations of human rights. As it turns out, we could be biologically dooming a whole generation too.
Get those kids out there! You get out there too! Sooner the better.
A joint Ad Hoc Committee to Study Emergency Powers in a meeting held Tuesday agreed to pass along their recommendations for reforming Tennessee law regarding the declaration of a state of emergency and powers granted to the executive branch during such emergency.
Of note is that the agreed-upon reforms are not recommended to go into effect until the current administration leaves. Additionally, the recommendations do not address the constitutionality of current state law.
As established in July by the respective speakers in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the bi-partisan joint committee consists of five state senators and 12 state representatives, with a co-chair and vice-chair from both the upper and lower chamber.
The ad hoc committee met twice previously in August and September to hear expert testimony on Tennessee’s Emergency Powers Act as written in T.C.A. 58-2-107.
As stated in the previous meetings through the testimony of several experts, Tennessee’s legislature has basically given the governor a “blank check” with gubernatorial powers that are “virtually unchecked” in terms of legislative oversight once the governor has declared a state of emergency.
In fact, T.C.A. 58-2-107 recognizes the governor’s responsibilities to address dangers associated with emergencies, but then goes on to authorize the governor to delegate direct operational control over all or any part of the emergency management functions within the state.
And, the law states, the governor has the authority to issue, amend and rescind executive orders, proclamations and rules that have the “force and effect of law.”
This, despite the fact that Tennessee’s Constitution in Article I, Section 1 and 2 is very strict in addressing Distribution of Powers.
Section 1 states, “The powers of the government shall be divided into three distinct departments: legislative, executive and judicial,” and Section 2 reads, “No person or persons belonging to one of these departments shall exercise any of the powers properly belonging to either of the others, except in the cases herein directed or permitted.”
At the third and final meeting, held Tuesday after a cancellation from September 17, the committee considered recommendations that will be reported to the speakers prior to the start of the 112th General Assembly in January, in accordance with the committee’s charge.
House Co-Chair Jason Zachary (R-Knoxville), offering background on the development of the House recommendations, said that consideration was given to the expert testimony from the first two meetings, their own independent research from organizations such as the National Conference of State Legislatures and suggestions from committee members.
Senate Co-Chair Ferrell Haile (R-Gallatin) concurred with Zachary that while the two didn’t always agree they had a good working relationship and are basically on the same path with their respective recommendations.
The topics being addressed in both sets of recommendations include:
Separation of categories from health-related disasters from other disasters through an additional chapter or part to title 58 in Tennessee’s code, leaving intact the current provisions. The Senate version would have the same protocols in place if a health-related disaster was declared in conjunction with any other type of disaster.
Length and extension of orders would be set at a specific number of days for an initial order, which is currently set at 60 days with extensions renewed at will by the governor. The House would keep the health-related state of emergency also at 60 days, while the Senate would set the initial order period at 100 days. Both versions would require extensions to be approved by the General Assembly. With the House version calling for extension to be done by joint resolution, a legislative council would be established for when the legislature is not in session. The Senate version stipulates that the governor would have to call a special session of the General Assembly to deal with extensions.
Ending or amending orders would be a new provision to Tennessee law included in the House and Senate recommendations, which allows the legislature to end a state of emergency at any time by passing a joint resolution. When not in session, the House would have the legislative council issue a “stay,” while the Senate proposes the legislature calling a special session through the currently available two-thirds signature process and subsequently passing a joint resolution.
Notification relative to the issuance of executive orders must be made to the General Assembly in both versions, although the House and Senate versions differ slightly in the notice period of 24 versus 24 hours, respectively.
Reporting requirements from the Senate include a fiscal assessment of anticipated expenditures and review by the Fiscal Review Committee and Finance Ways and Means Committee. The House recommends requiring bi-weekly reports to the Government Operations Committee from the Department of Health.
Under other issues, both the House and Senate recommend that any law not go into effect until after the current administration leaves. With two years remaining of the current term and the potential for a second term like the last five Tennessee governors, it could be as long as six years before the emergency powers issue is addressed. The Senate also recommends that all contracts and bids entered into during the state of emergency be reviewed and audited by the comptroller and submitted to the Finance, Ways and Means Committees. All emergency powers related bills filed by the ad hoc committee co-chairs are expected to be grouped and scheduled on the same calendar once the General Assembly is back in session.
Haile, in keeping with his previous statements reflective of a protracted process, said that after the Judiciary Committees of both chambers study the matter their recommendations be made by January 1, 2022 – more than a year from now.
The meeting lasted just over an hour, with most of that time consumed by the co-chairs explaining the recommendations to be presented for their respective chamber.
During discussion, though, Representative Johnny Shaw (D-Bolivar) expressed concern over the futility of creating legislation, when it is not known what the next pandemic will be. He was also gently critical of those members who had not been following health officials’ recommendations to wear a mask, the implication being that that’s why the state of emergency continues on.
That sentiment ignores the executive orders put in place at the end of March that for the first time identified “essential” and “non-essential” activities and put in place stay-at-home orders for an initial 14 days with a goal to “flatten the curve.”
Those orders were then extended to 30 days, and it is now 246 days later with some Tennessee counties still restricting activities and requiring masks.
As Representative John Ragan (R-Oak Ridge) pointed out to his colleagues, if this had been a pregnancy, they would be diapering the baby by now.
In his research on the use of the term emergency in Tennessee code, Ragan said there were over a dozen and they were all related to a sudden and unexpected occurrence that demanded immediate action.
Ragan mentioned a recent daily COVID-19 briefing from the Department of Health and the noteworthy statistic that 85 percent of deaths in the state occurred in those over 61 years of age and that ICU bed capacity is still in a red zone.
While the situation may have been an emergency at its outset, Ragan said that an emergency that lasts 10 or 11 months means that the legislature didn’t take action when they should have. Conversely, if the situation is no longer an emergency and has become routine, Ragan says then the General Assembly needs to be involved.
He pointed out that rural hospitals that had both ICU and floor beds have been shut down and questioned why they hadn’t been reactivated. Over the nine months, Ragan also said a new hospital could have been built.
While Ragan’s points and questions went unanswered, perhaps it was one of his other statements that directly addresses the issue.
As Ragan understands it, “the federal government is doling out money based on being in a state of emergency.”
For the upcoming legislative session, Zachary has filed HB0007 for the 112th Tennessee General Assembly establishing that the county mayor, and not the county board of health or its director in those counties with one, shall have the exclusive authority to establish health policies that affect the entire county. The bill has yet to get a Senate sponsor.