SEIU Community Organizer behind the anti-woman “Women’s March to the Polls” in Chicago

There will be a Woman’s March to the Polls in Chicago, Illinois on October 11th, 2017. Is the march about protecting mothers and their children from the gang violence in Chicago? Is the march focused on eliminating the growing number of murders on Chicago’s streets? Is the march’s mission to restore the family and help create jobs for women?

Jaquie Algee

As of October 10th, 2017 Chicago had a total 530 murders, 8 murders since October 1st, according to DNAInfo.com. Is not the murder rate in Chicago a woman’s issue? Does the Woman’s March to the Polls care about Chicago’s murder rate and its impact on women, families and neighborhoods?

QUESTION: What does The Women’s March to the Polls have to do with helping women?

The organizer of the march is Jaquie Algee the Vice President/Director of External Relations for The Service Employees International Union Healthcare Illinois/Indiana/Missouri/Kansas (SEIU HCIIMK).

The Woman’s March to the Polls (WMC) website describes its mission as follows:

WMC is an organization advocating for women’s rights, promoting intersectional feminism, and challenging the political system regarding issues affecting women. WMC brings together women and allies in support of reproductive justice, LGBTQ+ rights, immigrant rights, affordable childcare, racial justice, access for persons with disabilities, environmental protection, voting rights, and active citizenship, and other critical issues.

Let’s look at three of the missions of the Women’s March to the Polls.

The first is promoting “intersectional feminism.”

What is intersectional feminism and is it good for women? USA Today’s Alia E. Dastagir defines intersectional feminism thusly:

A white woman is penalized by her gender but has the advantage of race. A black woman is disadvantaged by her gender and her race. A Latina lesbian experiences discrimination because of her ethnicity, her gender and her sexual orientation.

Intersectionality has received increased attention in part due to how the Women’s March on Washington came together.

So does it help a white woman to hate herself because she is white? Does it help a black woman to hate anyone who is not black? Does being a lesbian help women and promote traditional families? Do LGBTQ+ rights help women, fathers, mothers and children?

Here are ten truths about the LGBTQ+ agenda. Here’s a pediatricians take on LGBTQ+.

Of course affordable childcare helps women and is a priority of the Trump administration as is equal justice under the law.

The second is advancing “reproductive justice.”

Reproductive justice are code words for abortion on demand. Is the act of a woman aborting her unborn child good for her health?

According to the Illinois Department of Health in 2015 there were a total of 39,856 abortions of which 25,809 were by unmarried women. Girls under the age of 14-years old accounted for 82 abortions, with girls between the ages of 14-17 years old aborting 1,144 babies. Chicago is in Cook County, which accounted for 22,892 or 64.7% of all abortions in Illinois. Abortion is the inextricable outcome of “reproductive justice.”

Why do underage girls and women abort their babies?

The Federalist’s Greg Scandlen has an answer in an article titled “How Many Women Are Pressured Into Abortions?” Scandlen reported:

One study from the pro-life side reported, “In a national study of women, 64% of those who aborted felt pressured to do so by others. This pressure can become violent. 65% suffered symptoms of trauma. In the year following an abortion, suicide rates are 6-7 times higher.“ See also this report from “Clinic Quotes.”

But even the pro-choice side is beginning to wake up to the issue. An article in The Daily Beast is headlined, “Coerced Abortions: A New Study Shows They’re Common.” The article is based largely on information from the Guttmacher Institute (a pro-abortion research center) but raises the topic of “reproductive coercion.” This is an interesting twist on the concept. Rather than looking at women who are coerced into having an abortion, it looks at women who are coerced or tricked first into getting pregnant, then also coerced into aborting the baby, identified as “reproductive control.”

Reproductive justice is a form of “reproductive control” and “reproductive coercion.”

Thirdly is futhering “environmental protection.”

How does environmental protection help women? Alex Epstein in “The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels” writes:

What does it mean to be moral?

This is an involved philosophical question, but for our purposes I will say: an activity is moral if it is fundamentally beneficial to human life.

By that standard, is the fossil fuel industry moral? The answer to that question is a resounding yes. By producing the most abundant, affordable, reliable energy in the world, the fossil fuel industry makes every other industry more productive—and it makes every individual more productive and thus more prosperous, giving him a level of opportunity to pursue happiness that previous generations couldn’t even dream of. Energy, the fuel of technology, is opportunity—the opportunity to use technology to improve every aspect of life. Including our environment.

Any animal’s environment can be broken down into two categories: threats and resources. (For human beings, “resources” includes a broad spectrum of things, including natural beauty.)

Epstein notes, “To assess the fossil fuel industry’s impact on our environment, we simply need to ask: What is its impact on threats? What is its impact on resources? The moral case against fossil fuels argues that the industry makes our environment more threatening and our resources more scarce.”

With scarce natural resources comes higher prices for food, home heating, gasoline and all other products used by women to sustain human life.

Perhaps the Women’s March to the Polls is all about politics and little to do with the life, liberty and happiness of women?  Or is this march just another a get out the vote to reelect Democrats to continue to lead Chicago on the same path that it is headed? You be the judge.

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EDITORS NOTE: The feature image is of Colette Gregory, right, with her mentee Sara Phillips, 27 from the January 20th, 2017 Women’s March on Chicago. Photo by WTTW PBS channel in Chicago.

The United States Rejected Obamacare in 1918

The AMA set out to destroy the excellent system of healthcare insurance set up by fraternal societies.

Roger McKinney

by  Roger McKinney

The US rejected Obamacare in 1918. What a difference a mere hundred years makes! US voters rejected mandatory health insurance, or Obamacare, at the turn of the last century. It took supporters almost another century, but they finally won.

For a quarter century before WWI, many of the nation’s young people went to Germany to complete their college education and returned determined to recreate the US in the image of socialist Germany. Richard Ely was one. He founded the American Economic Association for that sole purpose. He and economist Irving Fisher would lead the drive for universal, mandatory health care insurance.

At the time, middle class and wealthier Americans paid a fee each time they visited a doctor. But the fees were too high for the working poor who instead organized into mutual aid societies to help each other with medical costs. Known as lodges, such as the Elks, or secret societies such the International Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF) or the Freemasons, or just fraternal organizations, mutual help societies existed for centuries. They followed the ancient guild practices of mutual aid to craft members. David T. Beito beautifully writes their history in his book From Mutual Aid to the Welfare State: Fraternal Societies and Social Services 1890-1967, published by the University of North Carolina Press in 2000.

Socialists became wary of lodges, or fraternal societies, partly because of their secret passwords and handshakes. But the societies developed those for security purposes because they suffered from fraud by non-members wanting to cash in on the benefits. Two centuries ago an IOOF chapter in one state couldn’t easily contact another out-of-state chapter to confirm the membership of someone who wanted aid. The passwords and handshakes solved the problem.

In the earliest day, the lodges offered burial insurance because poor people were terrified of suffering the indignities of a pauper’s burial. Later, they added healthcare and life insurance, built orphanages and hospitals, and provided pensions. The Shriners branch of the Freemasons still maintain children’s hospitals. Without the lodges, most members could not afford to pay fee-for-service doctors and would otherwise go without medical care. Readers who want to know how medical care should operate and what is wrong with today’s system should read Mr. Beito’s book.

Medical Establishment Attack on Mutual Aid

The medical establishment began attacking the lodges as early as the 1890s because the lodges would contract with doctors for a flat fee per year per member to provide medical care for lodge members. The practice, known as “capitation,” is making a comeback with the federal government as a means to restrain the explosive growth in the costs of medical care. Lodges usually contracted with doctors from private medical schools set up by other doctors to fill the deficiency in the supply of new doctors by the state schools.

The American Medical Association (AMA) claimed that the lodges kept doctor pay too low, causing some to starve. So they launched public relations campaigns to stigmatize the lodge system and the doctors who served the working poor. They bribed politicians to shut down the medical schools they didn’t approve of, of course in the interest of “public health and safety” in the Baptists and Bootleggers style, in order to create a shortage of doctors. They bribed hospitals to reject doctors who worked with lodges and convinced medical organizations to ostracize them. AMA doctors refused to work at lodge-owned hospitals and the AMA worked tirelessly to shut those hospitals down. The AMA’s assault on “low pay” for their doctors finally worked,

Lodge practice was also a victim of an overall shrinkage in the supply of physicians due to a relentless campaign of professional “birth control” imposed by the medical societies. In 1910, for example, the United States had 164 doctors per 100,000 people, compared with only 125 in 1930. This shift occurred in great part because of increasingly tight state certification requirements. Fewer doctors not only translated into higher medical fees but also weaker bargaining power for lodges. Meanwhile, the number of medical schools plummeted from a high of 166 in 1904 to 81 in 1922. The hardest hit were the proprietary schools, a prime recruiting avenue for lodges.

When socialists and the AMA proposed mandatory health insurance for every citizen in the early 1900s, the lodges saw it as an attack on their system of self-reliance and mutual aid. Enough Americans shared the same values as the lodges that they defeated the proposals in two referenda. In 1918 the citizens of California voted three to one to reject mandatory health insurance. It failed again in New York in 1919.

Abandoning Traditional Values

But the times they were a-changing, and morality with it. Americans were abandoning traditional Christianity rapidly and its values of self-reliance and mutual aid. Of course, churches had always provided charity to the poorest since the early days of Christianity recorded in the Book of Acts in the Bible. But until the 1920s, Americans resisted accepting charity as much as they could out of a sense of honor. The lodges intended to help the working poor, not supplant charitable work. By the 1920s Americans interpreted self-reliance as selfishness. As Beito wrote,

The traditional fraternal worldview was under attack. Age-old virtues such as mutual aid, character building, self-restraint, thrift, and self-help, once taken for granted, came under fire either as outmoded or as drastically in need of modification.

In 1918 Clarence W. Tabor used his textbook, Business of the Household, to warn that if savings “means stunted lives, that is, physical derelicts or mental incompetents…through enforced self-denial and the absence of bodily comforts, or the starving of mental cravings and the sacrifice of spiritual development – then the price of increased bank deposits is too high.” An earlier generation would have dismissed these statements. Now they were in the mainstream. Bruce Barton, the public relations pioneer and author of the best-selling life of Christ, The Man Nobody Knows, espoused the ideal of self-realization rather than self-reliance, declaring that “life is meant to live and enjoy as you go along…. If self-denial is necessary I’ll practice some of it when I’m old and not try to do all of it now. For who knows? I may never be old.”

JM Keynes echoed Barton in the 1930’s with his famous line, “In the long run we’re all dead,” and with his continual assault on the evils of the Protestant work ethic and savings. The ideal of “service” replaced that of self-reliance. By “service” socialists meant that the wealthy should give to the poor. They helped remove the stigma of charity by convincing the poor that they shouldn’t be ashamed of receiving aid because the wealthy owed it to them.

The U.S. Became Increasingly Socialist

In addition to the efforts of the AMA to destroy the excellent system of healthcare insurance set up by the fraternal societies, the progress of socialism continued to erode the appeal of self-help. For example, the federal government gave favorable tax treatment to corporations who offered group insurance without extending that to individuals while members of fraternal organizations received no tax deductions for their healthcare insurance.

Corporations then paid the premiums so workers were fooled into thinking their insurance was free. Good economists understand that corporations merely deducted the premiums from future pay raises. The lodges argued that group insurance from the employer would enslave workers to a single company because they would lose their insurance if they lost their job whereas lodge insurance traveled with the individual. The lodges were right as we have found out.

The Great Depression weakened lodges as the bulk of the 25% unemployment came from their ranks, the working poor. More assaults on mutual aid came with the passage of social security legislation, company pensions, and worker’s compensation insurance. Again, the government allowed corporations to deduct expenses for those from their taxes without extending the privilege to individuals in fraternal organizations. Then came Medicare and Medicaid in the 1960s.

The book exposes the lie that socialists proposed their welfare measures because they saw a desperate need for them. Churches and charities had provided for the poor who couldn’t work since Biblical times, while the fraternal societies took care of the working poor very well. In 1924, 48% of working-class adult males were lodge members.

Socialists opposed the lodge system, not because it failed; it hadn’t. They opposed it because they wanted the services provided by the state as they were in Germany. They convinced the American people that socialism would not just help the poor, as the churches and fraternal organizations were, but would eliminate poverty. And as Helmut Schoeck warned us in his Envy: A Theory of Social Behavior, the lust to destroy successful people served as fuel for the fire. Beito’s concluding paragraph is worth reprinting in full:

The shift from mutual aid and self-help to the welfare state has involved more than a simple bookkeeping transfer of service provision from one set of institutions to another. As many of the leaders of fraternal societies had feared, much was lost in an exchange that transcended monetary calculations. The old relationships of voluntary reciprocity and autonomy have slowly given way to paternalistic dependency. Instead of mutual aid, the dominant social welfare arrangements of Americans have increasingly become characterized by impersonal bureaucracies controlled by outsiders.

Roger McKinney

Roger McKinney

Roger D. McKinney works as an analyst for a tiny healthcare insurance agency in Tulsa and writes a blog about economics at rdmckinney.blogspot.com. He has an MA in economics from the University of Oklahoma and is author of the book Financial Bull Riding.

Football Will Perish from the Earth

By 2050, the National Football League (NFL) will be like the Barnum and Bailey Circus of today. Bankrupt, closed, irrelevant, morally passe.

In the early 20th century, the circus was all the rage. After a century of the product’s consumption by a culture increasingly sensitive to the abuse of the weak and helpless—in this case, circus animals—the “Greatest Show on Earth” has been relegated to an empty sideshow. It is simply too brutish for sophisticated moderns who wince at the crack of a whip on an elephant’s rump.

Football as Bloodsport

The parallels of football and Roman gladiatorial games have been noted before.

Football will soon follow. Its massive billion dollar stadiums and marketing machines seem immortal for now. But these titanic playpens will soon crumble under the same cultural force that killed the circus: our culture’s growing concern for victims.

I am not judging football’s coming demise as a good or bad thing. I see it as simply a symptom of larger social forces that we should understand.

The parallels of football and Roman gladiatorial games have been noted before. In the Colosseum, the Roman emperor would have a grand procession into the arena to the standing ovation of the assembled masses. Today, our U.S. Defense Department-sponsored games begin with the procession of the American flag and anthem. It is often accompanied by dramatic aerial flyovers by jet fighters and fireworks, symbolizing the transcendent might and grandeur of America’s military conquerings. So too, the Roman games often reenacted the empire’s greatest battles.

Today’s latest controversy involves whether football players should stand united in honor of the flag. The sacredness of the flag rests in its long-standing ability to unify even enemies as the opposing teams simulate. Like any symbol, the flag serves as a vessel for people to place powerful emotions: memories of grandpa’s military service, apple pie, cookouts, neighborly support for one another are all wrapped in its colors.

Above all, the one thing the flag represents the most is the unifying power of sacrifice. We are united as one collective family in our reverence for the flag and anthem. The flag is sacred because it represents, as its loudest defenders proclaim, the blood shed by soldiers fighting for our freedoms.

Interestingly, gladiatorial games were first started as sacrificial offerings accompanying funerals. It was thought that the blood spilled by slaves and captives honored the death of state leaders with the transcendent unity of the crowd. With every pitiful animal howl and human cry, citizens felt swept up as one body in collective satisfaction and relief from mundane rivalries and resentments.

Football as Distraction

Today, governments like to take the suffering and courage of our sons and daughters who enlist and turn it into a marketing ploy for why we all need government coercion controlling our lives—who we hire, what we pay them, permission to cut hair, how big our sodas can be, how much we cook our milk, which drugs we can use to alter our minds, and so on. Governments also like to transmute our goosebumps we feel when the anthem plays into maintaining a trillion dollar annual foreign policy paid by debt created out of thin air and backed by the OPEC oil cartel’s energy markets.

At sporting events, our government captures the nostalgia we feel for neighborhood friendship and family pastimes, associates it with the anthem and flag, and then converts it into passive, numb surrender to perpetual warfare. Even while the nation divides over whether players should kneel or stand for the flag, our government continues to expand its military footprint overseas and drop more bombs, all in our name.

But the state, in collusion with powerful corporate allies, uses spectacles like football to distract and pacify the people. Instead of the violent slaughtering of Roman games, our Christianized culture sends players into simulated, padded warfare. We pick teams to unite our personal lives under and forget about the state’s socio- and economic abuses just outside our doorsteps. Studies even suggest that violent crime drops during major televised sporting events.

But now, Trump and his liberal mirror rivals have pierced the veil by injecting the NFL with the profanity of politics: the realm where real factions use real violence of the state to punish their rivals through regulations, mandates, and taxes. When Trump said “fire them” about the protesting players, invoking the specter of both the penal and paternal side of government, forcing people to take sides and not over the gridiron but at either side of the water cooler and dinner table, it did the game no favors.

Eventually, it took a church monk named Telemachus challenging the violent sacrifice of the Roman gladiatorial games to end their carnage. He climbed into the arena and protested until he was summarily slaughtered. His self-sacrifice for the defense of victims led to the public’s loss of appetite for the violence.The last known Roman gladiatorial event was in 404 AD, less than two decades after Telemachus’s death.

Today, myriad scandals serve as a persistent Telemachus threatening to bring the NFL down. Mothers and fathers all around the country are pulling their sons out of football due to the increased revelations of concussions and resulting brain damage caused by the sport. Whereas Roman citizens demanded their fighters stripped of armor to maximize carnage, increased paddings will end up making players look like Michelin men with bobble head-sized helmets.

In Rome, no one cared how gladiators treated their lovers. Today, growing public disgust with widespread reports of spousal abuse is souring the NFL’s mystique.

In college, the NCAA’s state-protected profiteering off of unpaid players’ physical sacrifice is increasingly criticized as well.

Meanwhile, diehard fans once thrilled by simulated violence are losing interest with ever constrained penalty rules and concussion concerns. The suspension of disbelief required to enjoy the game is waning: talks of brain damage, flags no longer able to unify people around soldiers’ sacrificial deaths, spousal abuse, and racial undertones are all exposing football as just a silly game to appease desires for tribalism and aggression—and make fat cat owners fatter. Not worth all the drama.

We should be proud that we do not send hungry lions into arenas with naked prisoners anymore. We have made progress because of Christianity’s leavening of the collective’s history-long abuse against the misfit person. Yet absent such gladiatorial games, our culture must confront our sacrifices of the innocent and nonviolent to appease our love for aggression as the means of keeping peace.

Reprinted from American Conservative

David Gornoski

David Gornoski

David Gornoski is your neighbor – as well as an entrepreneur, speaker and writer. He recently launched a project called A Neighbor’s Choice, which seeks to introduce Jesus’ culture of nonviolence to both Christians and the broader public. A Neighbor’s Choice is also the name of his weekly radio show on state violence and alternative solutions to it. Email him here.

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image of the Pontiac Silverdome, Michigan is by Brandon Davis.

Soporifics and Soullessness: Have we lost our collective minds?

Have we lost our collective minds? A mass shooting with no readily apparent motive is an extreme representation of our sense that our social fabric is unraveling. This is one of those things that people don’t believe can happen until it happens. And despite the unspeakable tragedy, it took less than an hour for politicians to criticize the President, ghoulishly exhorting that we need more than prayers and consolation. Maybe we do, but at least give the circle of victims a chance to deal with their personal grief before spouting off. At least CBS had the decency to fire its soulless vice president and senior counsel Hayley Geftman-Gold after she posted “I’m actually not even sympathetic bc [sic] country music fans often are Republican gun toters [sic].”

We have become a culture where Tim Tebow is mocked for kneeling in prayer before a football game while others are praised for “taking a knee” during the National Anthem—which by the way is not praying. Taking a knee in American football is when the quarterback drops to one knee immediately after receiving the snap, thus automatically ending the play. Taking a knee is a boring but effective move by the winning team toward the end of the game, as it does not allow the opponent the opportunity to regain possession of the ball. In urban lingo it means to take a temporary break from an activity.

Clearly, “taking a knee” is not praising a Higher Power that many on this earth believe in. And standing for the Anthem does not make one a racist. Note to partisan “news” presenters: when you push a pendulum in one direction really hard, when released it swings the other way with equal or greater force.

Living in virtual reality is no longer beyond the fringe. Children are becoming obese because they are participating in sports through video games rather than actually tossing around a ball to one another.

What happened to talking to each other? You don’t need a psychology professor to tell you that smart phones increase loneliness. Just walk down the street and you’ll see far too many couples walking, each with their own cell phone, obviously not talking to each other. Texting a few abbreviated words has replaced real conversation and emotional connection.

And we wonder why opiate use has risen to epidemic levels. People have always had their troubles. And man’s desire to avoid suffering whether physical or emotional, whether through alcohol, opium, mushrooms, or coca leaves has been documented for at least 9,000 years. But now the public has been convinced they can’t just be “high on life” and learn to cope. Big Pharma’s direct-to-consumer television ads quietly list innumerable side effects while extolling the virtues of their wares and the consumer’s inability to live without them.

Nearly 70 percent of Americans take at least one prescription drug. The statistics from the Rochester Epidemiology Project in Olmsted County, Minnesota (which are comparable to those elsewhere in the United States) reveal that the top three medications consumed are antibiotics (17%), antidepressants (13%), and opioids (11%). Antidepressants and opioids were the most commonly prescribed among young and middle-aged adults.

As physicians we do not want to become numb to patients’ needs while being consumed by government dictates. Electronic medical records should not become the excuse for hiding behind a computer screen—particularly with members of the younger generation who came out of the womb with a cell phone strapped to their ear by the umbilical cord. We need to be free to spend precious time getting to know our patients. Medications have saved countless lives, but prescriptions cannot become the tool to move along the overbooked office schedule or a quick fix to placate the demanding patient.

Let’s take heart. When left to our own devices and stripped of artificial political labels, we humans rise. Just ask our first responders and medical personnel or the hurricane volunteers or the victims helping victims or the thousands of people donating blood or the over 30,000 donors to the Go Fund Me page for the Las Vegas victims.

United we stand.

EDITORS NOTE: The medical definition of Soporific is: Something such as a drug that causes or induces profound sleep. Tending to cause sleep or to dull the sense of awareness or alertness.

Faith-Based Groups Free to Believe after HHS Rollback

Congress wants to take another crack at repealing Obamacare, but the president isn’t going to sit on his hands until it does. After months of watching the Senate fumble its replacement plan, Donald Trump is taking some matters into own hands. And conservatives will be relieved to know that the unconstitutional HHS mandate is one of them.

In a huge victory for religious liberty, the Department of Health and Human Services dealt a death blow to Barack Obama’s order that forced faith-based groups to offer free contraceptives — even if it violated their conscience.

After the Supreme Court scrapped Obama’s mandate for companies like Hobby Lobby, the 44th president tried to hide the same rule under a fancy accounting gimmick. A group of nuns became the poster women for Obama’s “accommodation,” which HHS concocted to spare religious groups from the choice of violating their faith or the law. Or so it said. In practice, the religious groups would still have to pay for the “health care” they oppose — just through a third-party.

People on both sides of the political spectrum blasted Obama’s phony compromise, failing to understand why HHS would demand that even the Little Sisters of the Poor should have to pay for birth control. The message was simple: abandon your conscience, or resist and be fined for your faith.

Thanks to President Trump, churches and religious groups no longer have to make that choice.

Today, HHS issued two regulations that beat back this idea that the government can strong-arm Americans into surrendering their beliefs. The first exempts employers and educational institutions from covering pills or procedures they believe destroys a human life. The second exempts some small businesses and pro-life organizations if they have similar objections. No one — not nuns, not store owners, or everyday Americans — should be faced with the choice of violating their beliefs or paying ridiculous penalties to exercise them. The courts realized that, siding with more than 200 plaintiffs on the HHS mandate 90 percent of the time! Like us, they understand that if the federal government can threaten people and organizations with fines for their beliefs, what can’t it do?

Of course, liberals are hysterical about Trump’s decision, claiming that millions of women are somehow going to lose their birth control because a handful of religious groups won’t pay for it. At most, experts think Trump’s new regulations will affect about 190,000 employees, a far cry from the Left’s sky-is-falling estimates. And if anything, these regulations protect employees from losing their insurance altogether. Let’s not forget that under the HHS mandate, some pro-life employers were faced with no choice but dropping employee health care.

As if keeping that promise weren’t enough, the White House also put a stop to the Obama guidance that forced millions of Americans to secretly pay for elective abortion on the health care exchange. After hiding the abortion fees for years, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a bulletin that any policyholder who pays for an Obamacare plan will be notified if it includes a separate abortion fee. For the last several years, the law buried these abortion surcharges. This new CMS guideline creates transparency for millions of Americans who may not know they’re paying for abortion coverage in their Obamacare plans.

The same First Amendment that gives Little Sisters of the Poor the right to object to liberal health care coverage is the same First Amendment that gives Jack Phillips the right to walk away from a same-sex wedding cake job.

Our deepest gratitude to the White House for restoring what Obama stole: the freedom to believe.


Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.


Also in the October 6 Washington Update:

Trump Keeps Promise, Restores Religious Liberty in Workplace

Laura Ingraham to Star at Next Week’s Summit!

Trump Administration Reverses Obama-Era Policies on Religious Freedom

The Trump administration came out strongly in defense of religious freedom Friday, with new legal guidance and a move to reverse one of the most controversial Obamacare mandates.

“Every American has a right to believe, worship, and exercise their faith,” Jeff Sessions says.

The Justice Department guidelines direct attorneys and agencies that freedom of religious extends to both organizations and individuals, and includes living out one’s religious beliefs. Under the Justice Department guidelines, this could expand to allowing employers to hire in accordance with their religious beliefs and prohibit denying federal contracts to entities based on religious beliefs.

The Department of Health and Human Services is rolling back the Obamacare mandate that employers cover contraception and abortion-inducing drugs, creating both a religious and moral exemption. This will expand the number of covered nonprofits and nonpublicly traded for-profit businesses.

In both cases, the departments are following up on President Donald Trump’s directive that was part of a May 4 executive order on religious freedom.

“Our freedom as citizens has always been inextricably linked with our religious freedom as a people. It has protected both the freedom to worship and the freedom not to believe,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement. “Every American has a right to believe, worship, and exercise their faith. The protections for this right, enshrined in our Constitution and laws, serve to declare and protect this important part of our heritage.”

Trump’s executive order directed the attorney general to “issue guidance interpreting religious liberty protections in federal law” in order “to guide all agencies in complying with relevant federal law.” In response, Sessions issued 20 “high-level principles” that federal agencies will follow. The guidelines don’t represent a new policy, but are based on more than 200 existing statutes and 158 existing regulations. These include the 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

Among the principles are that “Americans do not give up their freedom of religion by participating in society or the economy, or interacting with government;” “Religious employers are entitled to employ only persons whose beliefs and conduct are consistent with the employers’ religious precepts;” and “Generally, the federal government may not condition federal grants or contracts on the religious organization altering its religious character, beliefs, or activities. Implementation of the Guidance at the Department of Justice.”

“The constitutional protection of religious beliefs and the right to exercise those beliefs have served this country well, have made us one of the most tolerant countries in the world, and have also helped make us the freest and most generous,” Sessions said.

The Obama administration carried out a “relentless assault on the First Amendment” and promoted “anti-faith policies,” said Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, a social conservative think tank.

“President Trump and the Department of Justice are putting federal government agencies on notice: you will not only respect the freedom of every American to believe but live according to those beliefs,” Perkins said in a statement Friday. “This is a freedom that has been a fundamental part of our society since the beginning of our nation.”

Under the Obama administration, HHS required employers pay for their employees’ contraception and abortion-inducing drugs, even if this violates the conscience of employers. The Obama administration exempted houses of worship, but religious-affiliated groups that objected still had to allow a third-party administrator handle the contraception coverage.

The new policy under Trump offers a separate religious and a moral exemption. The religious exemption would cover a religious-affiliated nonprofit employer, such as a church, school or charity. The moral exemption would be available to employers that have moral opposition to providing contraception or abortion-inducing medication for employees, including a nonpublicly traded company, or a nonprofit even if it doesn’t have a religious affiliation.

Already there are 200 entities suing the federal government in 50 difference lawsuits opposing the mandate, according to HHS.

However, the liberal group Americans United for Separation of Church and State announced plans to sue the Trump administration over the new HHS rules.

“The Trump administration is carrying out the agenda of religious fundamentalists, the biggest part of the president’s remaining devoted supporters,” said Maggie Garrett, Americans United’s legislative director, in a statement Friday. “The rights of LGBTQ people, women, religious minorities, nontheists and others hang in the balance as the Trump administration continues to toe the line for its fundamentalist base.”

The Obama rule was “onerous” and the Trump action has made some progress in changing course, said Melanie Israel, a research associate for The Heritage Foundation, in a statement.

Americans will remain free to make their own decisions about, and purchase or find coverage for, the drugs and devices at issue in the mandate, and entities with objections will not be forced to be complicit in choices that would violate their religious or moral convictions.

Now that the administration has provided regulatory relief from the mandate, pending cases in courts across the country—including the case brought forward by the Little Sisters of the Poor—should come to a resolution as well.

The Becket Fund, which represented Little Sisters of the Poor in its lawsuit against the Obamacare mandate, supported the change.

“HHS has issued a balanced rule that respects all sides—it keeps the contraceptive mandate in place for most employers and now provides a religious exemption,” Mark Rienzi, senior counsel at the Becket Fund and lead attorney for the Little Sisters of the Poor, said in a statement. “The Little Sisters still need to get final relief in court, which should be easy now that the government admits it broke the law.”

Portrait of Fred Lucas

Fred Lucas

Fred Lucas is the White House correspondent for The Daily Signal. Send an email to Fred. Twitter: @FredLucasWH

A Note for our Readers:

Trust in the mainstream media is at a historic low—and rightfully so given the behavior of many journalists in Washington, D.C.

Ever since Donald Trump was elected president, it is painfully clear that the mainstream media covers liberals glowingly and conservatives critically.

Now journalists spread false, negative rumors about President Trump before any evidence is even produced.

Americans need an alternative to the mainstream media. That’s why The Daily Signal exists.

The Daily Signal’s mission is to give Americans the real, unvarnished truth about what is happening in Washington and what must be done to save our country.

Our dedicated team of more than 100 journalists and policy experts rely on the financial support of patriots like you.

Your donation helps us fight for access to our nation’s leaders and report the facts.

You deserve the truth about what’s going on in Washington.

Please make a gift to support The Daily Signal.

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On Average an NFL Player is Arrested Every Seven Days for a Violent Crime

There is a dark side to the National Football League that few media outlets are talking about. Donald J. Trump, Jr. highlighted the issues in a Tweet:

According to NFLarrest.com:

The average time between [NFL player] arrests is just seven days, while the recorded without an arrest is slightly more than two months, at 65 days.

NFLarrest.com provides an interactive database of National Football League player arrests and charges. NOTE: Due to a spike in visits the website is now down and is asking for “donations will be put into development and server upkeep.”

The NFL appears to embrace players who abuse women.

Stephen L. Carter in a Chicago Tribune article titled “The NFL has a serious violence problem” on the 2017 NFL draft wrote:

In the first round, the Oakland Raiders drafted Gareon Conley, who has been accused of rape. In the second round, the Cincinnati Bengals selected Joe Mixon, who in a much-viewed video punches a woman so hard that she falls down unconscious. In the sixth round, the Cleveland Brownsselected Caleb Brantley, who was accused of doing pretty much what Mixon did. And they are not the only drafted players who face or have faced such charges.

The below chart from NFLarrest.com shows the past 5 years data on crimes/arrests by NFL team:

NFLarrest.com notes that the top team for arrests is the Minnesota Vikings with the top 5 teams for arrests are: Denver Broncos, Cincinnati Bengals, Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars.

In 2006 there were 71 arrests of NFL players, 2013 had 62 arrests, while the lowest in the NFLarrest.com data base is 28 arrests. The player with the most arrests is Adam Jones who has played for both the Tennessee Titans and Cincinnati Bengals.

The top positions of those arrested are:

  • Wide receiver – 140
  • Linebacker – 119
  • Cornerback – 116
  • Running back – 99
  • Defensive tackle – 80

In 2016 the Berkeley Journal of Entertainment and Sports Law issued a report titled Unnecessary Roughness: The NFL’s History of Domestic Violence and the Need for Immediate ChangeThe report reads:

One week after the start of the National Football League (NFL)’s 2014-15 season, TMZ.com publicly released a video showing the Baltimore Ravens’ star running back, Ray Rice, knocking his fiancée Janay Rice unconscious in an
Atlantic City casino elevator. The couple is seen arguing in the casino lobby as they walk towards a waiting elevator. Less than ten seconds after entering the elevator, the grainy surveillance video shows Ray Rice slap Janay across the head. Less than ten seconds after entering the elevator, the grainy surveillance video shows Ray Rice slap Janay across the head. She immediately lunges towards him in the elevator to confront him and he punches her in the temple. Her head hits the metal safety rail in the elevator as she falls, rendering her unconscious. When the elevator doors reopen, Ray Rice, who has been described as a 212-pound “fire hydrant of muscle and speed” 1 drags the unconscious body of his fiancée halfway out of the elevator as her small black dress gathers around her waist.

[ … ]

The video shocked and horrified the nation.

Today the nation is shocked and horrified by players disrespecting the American flag and the National Anthem. Perhaps the National Football League should look inward.

RELATED ARTICLE: Boycott the NFL on Veterans Weekend, Sunday, November 12th

RELATED INFOGRAPHICS:

Cuban doctors tired of ‘being slaves’ sue Cuban Government

As former Bill Clinton said, “It’s the economy stupid!” For the Cuban people it truly is the economy, stupid.

Perhaps a few of my first hand experiences during my visit to Cuba will help those who favor big government understand where “socialismo” leads.

One of the things some people, many of whom have never visited Cuba, tout is their “excellent” healthcare system. Let me explain about the Cuban single payer government healthcare system. First, every visitor to Cuba must purchase health insurance from the Cuban government. For example, the cost of my health insurance was automatically included in the price of my plane ticket. So how much does the Cuban government pay its doctors to provide universal healthcare? The salary of a doctor is $30 a month.

In 2013 Brazil hired 4,000 doctors from Cuba to “work in areas where medical services and physicians are scarce.” These Cuban doctors were to be paid approximately $30,000 a year to provide medical services to remote areas of Brazil. According to U.S. News & World Report, “Analysts say the export of medical services adds about $6 billion a year to Cuba’s economy.”

How does this work? Brazil paid the Cuban government the $30,000 annual salaries of the Cuban doctors and the Cuban government then paid the doctors $30 a month or $360 a year. This equates to an 83% profit for the Cuban government. Not surprisingly many of these Cuban doctors sought asylum in Brazil to be paid what they actually earned, $30,000.

In socialist governments the “minimum wage” inextricably becomes the prevailing wage.

 in his New York Times article “Cuban Doctors Revolt: ‘You Get Tired of Being a Slave’” reports:

RIO DE JANEIRO — In a rare act of collective defiance, scores of Cuban doctors working overseas to make money for their families and their country are suing to break ranks with the Cuban government, demanding to be released from what one judge called a “form of slave labor.”

Thousands of Cuban doctors work abroad under contracts with the Cuban authorities. Countries like Brazil pay the island’s Communist government millions of dollars every month to provide the medical services, effectively making the doctors Cuba’s most valuable export.

But the doctors get a small cut of that money, and a growing number of them in Brazil have begun to rebel. In the last year, at least 150 Cuban doctors have filed lawsuits in Brazilian courts to challenge the arrangement, demanding to be treated as independent contractors who earn full salaries, not agents of the Cuban state.

“When you leave Cuba for the first time, you discover many things that you had been blind to,” said Yaili Jiménez Gutierrez, one of the doctors who filed suit. “There comes a time when you get tired of being a slave.”

Read more.

What I observed is that the Cuban people have great potential if they are unleashed and allowed to earn what they are truly worth.

As one Cuban man put it to me, “the people have no love for their work.” They have no love for their work because Cuba needs a change in direction. This change in direction will only come when there is a change of the socialist regime.

RELATED ARTICLE: The Twelve Reasons Why Cuba Is A Terrorist Nation And Is A Security Treat To The USA

VIDEO: Conservative on ABC Panel talking Obamacare repeal, Norks and President Trump

I appeared on an ABC Channel 7 panel on another failure of Obamacare repeal, Trump and Russia and the North Koreans.

RELATED ARTICLES:

Four Reasons the NFL is Dead Wrong on Protests
Tax Dollars are Subsidizing NFL National Anthem Protests
NFL’s Actions During National Anthem are Despicable, Time to Tune Out
Why Americans Hate the Media
The Megaphone Left vs. Non-Megaphone America

EDITORS NOTE: This video originally appeared on The Revolutionary Act.

Voters Ask White House to Man up on Mandate

One of the things conservatives love about Donald Trump is that, unlike some Republicans, he doesn’t tiptoe through the tough issues. When the GOP didn’t have the spine to tackle Obama’s transgender military policy, he did it himself. When legislation protecting religious freedom never made onto the House or Senate floor, the White House issued its own executive order. If Trump could repeal Obamacare himself, he would. But that’s also why some people are left wondering — why hasn’t the White House dealt with the HHS contraceptive mandate with the same grit?

It’s not as if the president hasn’t staked out his position on the issue. Since the early days of the campaign, Trump made himself an ally of pro-lifers, living up to that promise almost every day of his eight months in office. Now, National Review wants to know, where is the follow-through voters are so used to seeing on something as fundamental as our freedom to believe?

“In June,” write Melanie Israel and Elizabeth Slattery, “a draft of the interim final rule regarding exemptions to the contraception mandate leaked to media. It indicated that the Trump administration intended to provide a definitive exemption for individuals, employers, and insurers with religious or moral objections to all or some of the onerous mandate. Overall, it seemed to offer an effective defense of religious liberty.”

“But then… nothing happened. The interim final rule was never published in the Federal Register. And the Trump administration has continued to defend the HHS mandate in court.”

“Every day that individuals, employers, and religious organizations are forced to choose between complying with the mandate or violating their sincere moral or religious beliefs is an affront to the religious liberty of all Americans.”

“You don’t have to share the Little Sisters’ beliefs to recognize that the government should not be able to force Americans to set aside their conscience when they step outside the four walls of a church to serve the poor, heal the sick, or educate the next generation.”

Donald Trump has given conservatives very little to complain about where his agenda is concerned. The president’s base understands, like we do, how the Left is blocking his initiatives and nominees, and how the GOP’s weak-kneed leaders are failing to move his priorities through the Senate. But where their patience is wearing thin is in areas like the HHS mandate and the DOJ’s guidance on religious liberty, which fall to the White House — and the White House alone. The president has made good on so many promises. We hope his streak continues on issues as fundamental as these.


Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.


Also in the September 29 Washington Update:

Fall o’ the Leader? House Urges McConnell’s Ouster

Trump Courts Conservatives with Solid Judges

FRC in the Spotlight

Fall o’ the Leader? House Urges McConnell’s Ouster

If anyone’s ready to turn the page on September, it’s Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). The last few weeks haven’t exactly been kind to the Kentucky senator, who watched his own party set fire to the latest GOP health care repeal, blew millions of dollars on a losing effort in Alabama’s Senate runoff, and got blamed for all of it by Donald Trump. “He’s got his hands full,” said Senator Tim Scott (R-S.C.) in the understatement of the year.

But lately, Republicans are wondering if the party’s fate should be in his hands in the first place. After days of disappointments, voters aren’t the only ones peeved by the Senate leadership’s inability to move the conservative agenda forward. So are some Members of Congress. In the House, where leaders have kept up their end of the Obamacare, Planned Parenthood, tax, and budget bargains, “frustrating” doesn’t begin to describe members’ feelings. Despite their differences, Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) has managed to send key bills to the Senate only to watch them die at the hands of a divided and disorganized caucus. After 10 years as the GOP’s top dog, some Republicans are saying it’s time for McConnell to call it quits.

Republican Study Committee Chairman Mark Walker (R-N.C.) didn’t beat around the bush with his criticism, insisting earlier today that it’s in the party’s best interest for the Kentucky senator to retire. “I think he’s a huge part of the problem,” the RSC chief told NBC. “There’s a growing consensus that would be very happy if the fine senator from Kentucky called it a career.” McConnell’s counterpart wasn’t as blunt as Walker, but even Speaker Ryan was clear that tensions between the two chambers had hit a boiling point. “We’re really frustrated,” he told reporters. “Look,” he went on, “we passed 373 bills here in the House [and] 270-some are still in the Senate.” No wonder they’re irritated. The House’s pace is blowing past the marks it set in the Obama, Clinton, and both Bush administrations.

On his side of the Capitol, McConnell’s party is circling the wagons. “Mitch is sort of the symbol of our dysfunction,” Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said, “but it’s not about Mitch, it’s about all of us.” Wisconsin’s Ron Johnson (R) pointed out the difficulty of the Leader’s job. “It’s hard herding cats. I don’t envy him his task, okay?” Few do. But leaders are chosen to rise above those challenges and unite their party. Senator McConnell has had a decade as the chamber’s top Republican to prove that he can. I respect McConnell, but there’s no excuse for faltering now — not when the GOP has the keys to Congress and the White House.

The Senate has been a graveyard for almost every promise made to voters. It’s time for a radical overhaul. And if Republicans won’t do it — voters will.


Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.


Also in the September 29 Washington Update:

Trump Courts Conservatives with Solid Judges

Voters Ask White House to Man up on Mandate

RELATED ARTICLE: The Washington Corruption that is the ‘Swamp’

The Negative Infects of Sexual Liberalism

Most people probably don’t spend a lot of time thinking about disease. And at least where STDs are concerned, maybe that’s part of the problem. For the last several years, sexually transmitted infections and diseases have exploded into one of the worse crises no one is talking about. Now, they’re almost impossible to ignore, with rates surging to record highs in young and old people alike. The outbreak of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis reached an astounding two million cases last year, “the highest number ever,” according to the Centers for Disease Control.

A whopping 1.6 million new cases cropped up in 2016, stoking the fears of the medical community that Americans aren’t taking the problem seriously enough. To the CDC, the statistics are even more alarming since some strains of gonorrhea are now untreatable.

Unfortunately, this is just another by-product of sexual liberalism that’s coming home to roost in a nation that’s spent the last eight years — not just encouraging, but funding— messages of irresponsibility. Instead of encouraging morality, Barack Obama used every second of his two terms to promote immorality. And for our libertarian friends the economic burden is nothing to sneeze at. Taxpayers sink almost $20 billion a year into treatments for these infections — most of them incurable, and all of them expensive. Now, sadly, it’s become part of the push for universal health care. The philosophy is simple: live however you want, and everyone else pays the price.

From bathroom policies to free birth control, we’ve sexualized our culture to the point that it’s actually killing us. Instead of ignoring the problem, it’s time for liberals to join conservatives in urging America to stop engaging in risky behavior that results in deadly consequences. Clearly, there needs to be a serious discussion of the long-term implications of the Left’s agenda of sexual-satisfaction-at any-cost — not just for individuals, but for society as a whole. The government has spent years (and even more taxpayer dollars) trying to solve a problem it helped created. How many more will we spend ignoring the real solution: restraint?


Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC Action senior writers.


Also in the September 27 Washington Update:

Senate GOP at Lose Ends in Alabama

House Moves on Pro-life Pain Killer

FRC in the Spotlight


Previous Washington Update Articles »

Judge Roy Moore Wins GOP’s Alabama Senate Runoff

Roy Moore, former chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, defeats incumbent Sen. Luther Strange, R-Ala., in the race to decide who would battle Democrat nominee Doug Jones in the Dec. 12 special election.

Challenger Roy Moore soundly defeated incumbent Luther Strange in Tuesday’s runoff to choose the Republican nominee in Alabama’s U.S. Senate race.

With all precincts reporting after 11 p.m., Moore had 54.6 percent or 262,204 votes and Strange had 45.4 percent or 218,066 votes. The Associated Press called the race when results from about half the 2,286 precincts were in.

“Republican voters know who a person of principle is,” Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder of Tea Party Patriots, told The Daily Signal in a pre-election interview predicting a victory for Moore, former chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court.

Moore will face Democrat Doug Jones in the Dec. 12 special election for the Senate seat vacated by Republican Jeff Sessions when he became attorney general in the Trump administration.

President Donald Trump had endorsed Strange, whom he considered loyal to his priorities.

Trump tweeted congratulations to Moore late Tuesday night:

“From the beginning of this campaign, my priority has been serving the people of Alabama,” Strange, the state’s former attorney general, said in a written concession statement. “Tomorrow, I will go back to work with President Trump and do all I can to advance his agenda over the next few weeks.”

In victory remarks in which he characteristically evoked faith in God, Moore said:

Together we can make America great. We can support the president. Don’t let anybody in the press think that because [Trump] supported my opponent I do not support him and support his agenda. As long as it’s constitutional, as long as it advances our society, our culture, our country, I will be supportive. … But we have to return the knowledge of God and the Constitution of the United States to the United States Congress.

The runoff Tuesday was set up when neither Strange nor Moore garnered 50 percent of the vote in a 10-candidate primary Aug. 15.  (Moore got 40 percent to Strange’s 33 percent, while Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., finished third with 20 percent.)

Republicans seek to preserve their slim 52-seat majority in the 100-seat Senate.

Moore tweeted as his victory became clear:

Democrats’ nominee Jones, 63, is a lawyer and former U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Alabama appointed by President Bill Clinton. His campaign platform includes health care reform, environmental protections, civil rights, and criminal justice reform.

On  Feb. 9, then-Gov. Robert Bentley appointed Strange to the seat vacated when the Senate confirmed one of its own, Sessions, as attorney general.

Trump endorsed and stumped for Strange, but also said at a rally Friday night in Huntsville, Alabama, that he would work “like hell” to elect Moore should the challenger prevail.

“I might have made a mistake,” Trump said at one point. “I’ll be honest, I might have made a mistake.”

But the president added: “Luther [Strange] will definitely win.”

In the runoff, Moore, 70, presented himself as the true conservative, while Strange, 64, batted away accusations that he is too establishment. Moore had led in polls, but Strange appeared to be closing the gap.

Andrew Roth, vice president of government affairs at the Club for Growth, predicted in an interview with The Daily Signal that the runoff would be a bellwether for how state voters view progress in Congress.

“The way I view this race is that it’s more of an establishment versus anti-establishment race,” Roth said. “The issues, conservative or not, didn’t really play in this. The race is more about what voters want out of Congress and out of the Senate.”

Vice President Mike Pence, a former congressman from Indiana as well as that state’s governor, also endorsed Strange.

“Our president needs Luther Strange back in the United States Senate so he can finish the job,” Pence said Monday night at a rally at Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport. “I know Sen. Luther Strange will be there for our president, because he’s already been there.”

Sen. Luther Strange lost to challenger Roy Moore. (Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/Newscom)

The Washington Examiner and other news outlets reported that the Senate Leadership Fund, a political action committee tied to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., filled Alabama’s TV and radio airwaves with millions of dollars worth of ads backing Strange and attacking Moore.

Moore’s high-profile supporters include Sarah Palin, the former Alaska governor and GOP vice presidential candidate, as well as former Trump White House aides Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka.

“A vote for Judge Moore isn’t a vote against the president,” Palin said Thursday night, adding:

It is a vote for the people’s agenda that elected the president. It’s for the big, beautiful movement that we’re all a part of. The president needs support to keep the promises that elected him. So we’re sending Trump someone who has our back, not Mitch McConnell’s … Make no mistake, ‘Big Luther’ is Mitch McConnell’s guy.

“While we were honored to have fought hard for Big Luther, Judge Roy Moore won this nomination fair and square and he has our support, as it is vital that we keep this seat in Republican hands,” the Senate Leadership Fund said in a formal acknowledgement of Strange’s loss Tuesday night.

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, came out Monday in support of Moore.

“A Judge Moore win really would make sure that the Trump agenda gets implemented,” Meadows told Breitbart News, adding:

There’s all kinds of members of Congress and senators who will run, and they really run so incredibly strong like they have a backbone of steel, but they really have a backbone of a banana. You know, when it’s peeled back, it gets real mushy when they get to Washington, D.C. So we need to give them some steel. Judge Roy Moore has a backbone of steel.

Trump won Alabama in November with 62 percent of the vote.

Moore is perhaps best known for being removed twice as Alabama’s chief justice, first in 2003 for refusing to take down a Ten Commandments monument and again in 2016, after his re-election, for ordering judges not to issue licenses for same-sex marriages.

Moore’s campaign platform included support for limited government, immigration reform, a border wall, energy independence, and the military.

The Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund also endorsed Moore.

Martin, the Tea Party Patriots co-founder, told The Daily Signal before the polls opened that by choosing Moore, GOP voters would be “sending a message to Washington that they want someone they can count on to stick to their principles.”

A victory for Strange, she said, would be on account of Trump.

“Given President Trump’s endorsement, people in Alabama will think that Strange will support the president’s agenda,” Martin said.

The GOP runoff was a product of voter frustration with the status quo, the Club for Growth’s Roth said.

“The dysfunction in Washington has been around for so long that maybe, finally the voters have finally had enough,” Roth said, adding:

You certainly saw them express that in November when Trump won [and] you’re going to continue to see the voters express their anger until they get things fixed.

Ken McIntyre contributed to this report, which was updated to include candidate statements and final unofficial results.  

Rachel del Guidice

Rachel del Guidice is a reporter for The Daily Signal. She is a graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville, Forge Leadership Network, and The Heritage Foundation’s Young Leaders Program. Send an email to Rachel. Twitter: @LRacheldG.

A Note for our Readers:

Trust in the mainstream media is at a historic low—and rightfully so given the behavior of many journalists in Washington, D.C.

Ever since Donald Trump was elected president, it is painfully clear that the mainstream media covers liberals glowingly and conservatives critically.

Now journalists spread false, negative rumors about President Trump before any evidence is even produced.

Americans need an alternative to the mainstream media. That’s why The Daily Signal exists.

The Daily Signal’s mission is to give Americans the real, unvarnished truth about what is happening in Washington and what must be done to save our country.

Our dedicated team of more than 100 journalists and policy experts rely on the financial support of patriots like you.

Your donation helps us fight for access to our nation’s leaders and report the facts.

You deserve the truth about what’s going on in Washington.

Please make a gift to support The Daily Signal.

SUPPORT THE DAILY SIGNAL

RELATED ARTICLES:

Moore Victory Shows Populist Movement Bigger Than Trump. He Must Return To Lead It.

Frictional Characters Threaten GOP Repeal

There’s no such thing as a perfect piece of legislation. And for Republicans like Senator Rand Paul (Ky.), that’s been a hard reality to swallow. Like a lot of us, he wants nothing more than to scrap Obamacare completely and start over with a competitive, pro-life, free market system. But unfortunately, that’s no longer an option at this moment for the GOP after a summer of misfires and wasted opportunities. The clock is ticking. And the only thing Republicans have less of than time is voters’ patience. And both demand leaders act now.

In the plan from Senators Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Republicans have a choice. They can vote “yes” and gut a significant portion of Obamacare and Planned Parenthood funding, or they can vote “no” and keep 100 percent of it. Apparently, Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) prefers the latter, tweeting that he’s prepared to kill the GOP’s repeal a second time because it isn’t the product of “regular order.” (Neither, conservatives are quick to point out, was Obamacare.) “I think most of us are trying to figure out what the logic is,” Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) said. “We all know that some folks would rather have a bill that’s perfect. But I guess if we can’t have a bill that’s perfect, I’d rather have a bill that’s much better than what [the law] is today.”

And for a lot of Americans, this debate is about a lot more than dollars and cents. It’s about actual human lives, whose fate will literally be decided by what the Senate does in seven days. If the Graham-Cassidy bill fails, so does the GOP’s best shot at defunding Planned Parenthood. At a rally outside Senator Paul’s Kentucky office, Students for Life did their best to drive that urgency home. “The disastrous status quo that is Obamacare is harming families, using our taxpayer dollars to fund abortion and line the pockets of Planned Parenthood’s billion-dollar abortion industry,” said President Kristan Hawkins. Vice President Mike Pence agrees. “The president and I consider Senator Paul a friend,” he made clear. “He’s a good man, but he’s wrong about this.” And unless he changes his mind, thousands of future Americans will pay the price.

Meanwhile, in pockets across the country, the Left’s opposition “is again reaching jet-aircraft decibels of outrage,” the Wall Street Journal jokes. Armed with the usual misinformation, liberals are taking to the airwaves and social media to bash the effort, which they claim would leave 18 million uninsured. (Of course, they neglect to mention that at least half of those would be willfully uninsured after the bill scraps Obama’s individual mandate.)

Liberals are also making a big deal about voting on a bill without a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) score. But what good was a CBO score for Obamacare? If you want a good laugh, read its prediction for the 2009 law – which, among other things, claimed Obamacare would reduce the U.S. deficit. Besides, “CBO forecasts are often wrong,” the Wall Street Journal editors point out. “In this case, they’d also be meaningless. The point of Graham-Cassidy is to allow states to experiment and tailor approaches to local populations. Some might try to expand Medicaid’s reach or even go single-payer. Others might tinker with reinsurance. The budget office can’t possibly know what 50 states would do or how that would affect coverage.”

While the two sides snipe back and forth, the issue is also starting to bleed into the Alabama Senate primary. Senator Luther Strange and Judge Roy Moore are locked in a heated runoff for Jeff Sessions’s old seat, and health care is front and center. In some press reports, the media is trying to paint Moore as an opponent of the Graham-Cassidy bill. But that’s absolutely not true. I spoke with him last night, and although he would prefer a full repeal of Obamacare, he sees the importance of in ending the forced partnership between taxpayers and Planned Parenthood. As far as he’s concerned, the GOP plan is a good first step.

For now, though, the focus will be on the senators who already have a vote. Make sure they cast the right one!

Contact your senators and urge them to start freeing America from the grip of Obama’s failed law.


Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC Action senior writers.


Also in the September 22 Washington Update:

Religious Liberty Is Abbott Forming

A Boston Massacre of the First Amendment


Previous Washington Update Articles »

For Senate: Life Begins at 50… Votes

Republicans certainly have a flair for the dramatic. With less than four working days to kill Obamacare, Senate hallways are already empty. With their repeal bill still hanging in the balance, members left town late Tuesday to mark the Jewish holidays — adding even more suspense to next week’s September 30th deadline. Even now, Republican leaders aren’t sure where their party will land on the plan from Senators Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Bill Cassidy (R-La.). Although the push seems to be gaining steam, the results are anything but certain — as Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) reminded everyone the last time around.

One thing’s for sure: it will be an anxious few days for Planned Parenthood. Apart from Barack Obama, Cecile Richards’s group has the most to lose — almost $400 million a year, to be exact. Like the string of reconciliation bills before it, the Graham-Cassidy measure guts 86 percent of the organization’s Medicaid funding, putting a huge dent in the forced partnership between taxpayers and America’s biggest abortion business. That should be a major motivating factor for dozens of pro-life senators, who understand that this is conservatives’ best shot at ending the government’s direct deposit to a scandal-ridden organization.

Even Planned Parenthood admits it performs more abortions (328,348 in 2015 alone) than basic breast exams. That’s not difficult to believe since overall health screenings have dropped by half since 2011. Even contraception counseling, the group’s bread-and-butter, fell by 136,244. So what, exactly, are taxpayers funding? Certainly not the “comprehensive care” Richards advertises. Or even the volume of care, since Planned Parenthood saw 100,000 fewer patients in 2015 than the year before.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to change Senator Rand Paul’s (R-Ky.) mind. The Kentucky pro-lifer insists he won’t vote for the Graham-Cassidy bill, despite the thousands of unborn lives it could save. That’s frustrating position for plenty of conservatives to accept. Like a lot of pro-lifers, they think the GOP’s concern for these children should outweigh the repeal’s imperfections. Susan B. Anthony List blasted Paul for his “outright opposition to the bill, and his dismissiveness of the pro-life priorities within it is alarming and damaging.” It is, they argue, an “unacceptable position for a pro-life senator to have.”

On Twitter, Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) made the case for us, snapping a photo of all of the pro-life language in the bill. “These flags mark all the abortion restrictions in the Republican repeal of Obamacare,” he tweeted. That can only help the GOP’s cause, based on the support from both sides for more limits on Planned Parenthood’s biggest moneymaker.

In a New York Magazine piece this week, liberals try to set the record straight on the real driving force behind the Graham-Cassidy bill. The motivation, Ed Kilgore points out, is:

“…generally assumed to be the potential fury of the GOP’s conservative base if Republicans break their promise to repeal Obamacare. But there’s another thing pushing them toward the abyss: One of the most powerful factions in the GOP and the conservative movement, the anti-abortion lobby, is backing Graham-Cassidy to the hilt. That’s because, like every other GOP repeal-and-replace bill, it temporarily defunds Planned Parenthood” and aims to prevent use of federal insurance-purchasing tax subsidies for polices that include abortion coverage.”

It’s funny. One minute the media says the social conservative movement is dead — the next, it’s complaining we’re too powerful. According to Democrats, it’s the latter. Republicans are “scared to death of a promise they may not keep to the Republican primary base,” Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) said.

Let’s hope so. This is a make or break moment for the GOP, as pollster John McLaughlin’s report makes quite clear. Voters elected Republicans to keep their word on Obamacare — seven years’ worth of words, actually. This week, I am in Arizona speaking to supporters in Tucson and Phoenix, encouraging them to get their senators in line on the partial repeal of Obamacare.

Join them by reaching out to yours — before it’s too late!

For more on the debate, check out Ken Blackwell’s interview with Neil Cavuto on Fox Business Wednesday.


Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.


Also in the September 21 Washington Update:
Lib Teacher Tries to Mx up Kids on Gender

On Adoption, Left Attacks Mich. Again


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