Arizona Senate Not Holding Maricopa County in Contempt Due to Holdout Republican

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The Republican-controlled Arizona Senate isn’t voting to hold Maricopa County officials in contempt for refusing to fully comply with election audit subpoenas because of a single Republican senator.

Republicans lost a seat in the state Senate in the Nov. 3, 2020, election and hold a narrow 16–14 majority. That gives state Sen. Paul Boyer, a Republican, the power to stymie efforts to hold the county’s Board of Supervisors (BOS) in contempt.

“Senator Boyer agreed to proceed with [the] audit but when Maricopa BOS refused to cooperate, Boyer would not vote with us for the resolution of contempt which leaves us one vote short,” Arizona Senate President Karen Fann, a Republican, wrote in a July 21 social media post.

Boyer, who didn’t respond to requests for comment by press time, responded directly to Fann.

“You told us in closed caucus the ‘audit’ would not cost taxpayers more than $150k, and you wouldn’t divulge who you were hiring. Had you told us it was an inexperienced, partisan firm, I wouldn’t have been the only one to object,” he said.

Fann tapped Florida-based Cyber Ninjas to lead the audit, along with subcontractors Wake Technology Services, CyFIR, and Digital Discovery.

Democrats and other critics have said that Cyber Ninjas isn’t qualified to perform such an audit because the firm lacks experience conducting audits and because its CEO, Doug Logan, shared and made posts on social media last year alleging election fraud had occurred in the Nov. 3, 2020, election. Proponents and Republicans have said the firm has created a transparent process for an unprecedented election review and that the subcontractors have ample experience.

On the issue of funding, taxpayers are only paying $150,000. Donations are funding the rest of the audit.

Senators voted in February on a measure to hold the BOS in contempt for failing to comply with subpoenas issued by the state Senate in late 2020.

Supervisors “have repeatedly and willfully delayed and obstructed a vital and duly authorized investigation by the Arizona Senate,” the resolution stated.

The measure would have enabled the Senate to send the sergeant-at-arms to arrest the supervisors.

The vote went along party lines, except for Boyer, who sided with Democrats. That made the vote 15–15.

“My vote is about patience,” Boyer said, noting that it would provide “a little bit more time for us to work together charitably and amicably as friends.”

The standoff between county and state officials ended later that month, when a judge ruled against the county, saying the subpoenas the Senate issued were valid.

County supervisors agreed to turn over nearly 2.1 million ballots, 385 tabulators, and other election-related materials, but have refused to send over router or router images and passwords to access the election machines at an administrative level.

Auditors want that information, as well as ballot envelope images and splunk logs, to try to clear up issues they’ve identified in their review. The county isn’t cooperating, however…..

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Continue reading this article, published July 22, 2021 at The Epoch Times.

Too Much Money Chasing Too Few Goods and Services

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Inflation can be considered a tax, an especially regressive one, falling harder on those with lower income and/or assets.

As we’ve noted previously, the Federal Reserve’s “M2” monetary aggregate began growing significantly faster than the “GDP” measure of economic output in the United States beginning around 2008, amidst the 2007-2009 financial and economic crisis.

With the federal government’s massive fiscal and economic “stimulus” policies arriving together with a pandemic and government lockdowns, M2 growth has recently risen dramatically higher than GDP growth.

 

 

Earlier this week, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (within the U.S. Department of Labor) reported that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose in June at one of its fastest growing rates in more than a decade. Some people have been pointing to the fact that year-over-year changes in the CPI may be high recently in part because the comparisons to last year’s levels were amidst the onset of the pandemic. But in the second quarter of 2021, compared to the first quarter of 2021 and on a seasonally adjusted basis, the CPI rose at an annualized rate of more than 8 percent, which is the highest quarterly growth rate since the third quarter of 1981.

It’s always worthwhile to keep an eye on alternative inflation measures, given the estimation issues associated with government statistics, and considering the source of those statistics.

Along those lines, a recent survey of small businesses by the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) returned a result for prices that hasn’t been reached since 1981.

And the prices component of the monthly Institute for Supply Management survey of business purchasing managers rose in June 2021 to its highest reading since July 1979.

Inflation can be considered as a tax, and an especially regressive one, falling harder on those with lower income and/or assets. Inflation can be considered one cost of government.

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Continue reader this article at Wolf Street.

 

It’s About Time We Stopped “Trying Communism”

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I don’t know how many protests, solidarity movements, refugees, human rights alerts, economic collapses, and purges are going to get this message through everyone’s heads, Communism is a terrible system of governance. In fact, at this point, we should be consistent. Any government that does not guarantee as to the very justification for its existence, individual rights, open markets, and accountable governance, is worth challenging.

I am of course referring to the ongoing protest in Cuba, to which those on the far left will shamefully attribute to the US embargo on the Communist regime. Others may simply beat around the bush and try to attribute the reasons for the protests to current events. Although all these may contribute to the discontent fueling the Cuban protests, just like every single Communist regime, the ultimate reason why things are going poorly is that the people live under a crushing regime of incompetence and oppression.

To make room for a colleague that will inevitably publish on the Cuban protests in more detail, my article will focus not on Cuba but on the general topic of Communism.

The Shameful Track Record of Communism

Real Communism has never been tried before, but it certainly has been attempted in all sorts of flavors and every single one of them sucked. For some reason, their leaders can’t bring themselves to care about the rights of individuals. Perhaps it undermines their overall collectivist views? Perhaps individual dignity would lead down the slippery slope to capitalism? Perhaps individual rights and preferences are a bourgeois construct? That’s certainly what Che Guevara, the leader of Cuba’s Communist revolution, and Fidel Castro, Communist Cuba’s first leader thought. In fact, Human Progress points out,

“Both Guevara and Castro considered homosexuality a bourgeois decadence. In an interview in 1965, Castro explained that “A deviation of that nature clashes with the concept we have of what a militant communist should be.”

Although the American Left somehow rationalizes the deification of men like Che Guevara, they seem to conveniently forget that much like all power-hungry dictators with no regard for human life, he was blatantly a racist, a bigot, and a mass murderer. Human Progress notes,

“According to Álvaro Vargas Llosa, homosexuals, Jehova’s Witnesses, Afro-Cuban priests, and others who were believed to have committed a crime against revolutionary morals, were forced to work in these camps to correct their “anti-social behavior.” Many of them died; others were tortured or raped.”

Even today the Cuban government and every single communist country are incredibly repressive. In fact, in reaction to the protests that some may keep telling themselves aren’t against the Communist government, they just shut off the internet. You don’t do that when the people are protesting the actions of a foreign government, such as a US embargo; you do that when the protestors are against the domestic government.

To briefly highlight some of the many atrocities committed by Communist regimes let’s start with China. It’s been a little bit more than a month since the anniversary of China’s Tiananmen Square Massacre and tens of millions died in Mao’s Great Leap Forward as well as the Cultural Revolution. A failure of Communist economic and political reform respectively. North Korea is such a repressive and poor country, it’s hard to even know where to begin. Furthermore, there are entire books about how life in the Soviet Union sucked.

In Cambodia (this one is cool because my family fled this genocide so that’s why we all live in America now), under the communist Khmer Rouge, not only did they manage to kill off as much of a quarter of the population, but the mass murder, starvation, and torture got so out of hand, communist Vietnam had to intervene with military force. Vietnam is probably one of the more well-behaved communist nations; however, they still have a repressive one-party state and much like China, their current economic success is directly attributed to market reforms. In other words, becoming less communist and more capitalist.

It is simply puzzling that in all these regimes that purport to represent the proletariat, they end up doing more to impoverish and oppress the working class than even the most sadistic capitalist. In hindsight, it really isn’t that difficult of a question. As mentioned before, any government that does not protect individual rights, open markets, and constraints on power is not only a recipe for disaster but a moral tragedy.

In liberal democracies, like the United States, there is much talk about the consent of the governed to which governments derive their legitimacy. We already have trouble justifying the impositions that we live under as truly consensual. Such a notion cannot even remotely exist in a Communist regime or any authoritarian regime for that matter.

There is not a single country that adopted Communism or moved in its direction that was able to provide the standards of living and prosperity found in a free and open society like the United States. In fact, that bar is too high, because not a single one has produced any sort of relative prosperity without some sort of market reform, and not a single one can produce a human rights record that doesn’t make the problems in freer countries look like child’s play.

The Basics of Governance

It has become fashionable for some, like the Chinese Communist Party and all those around the world who share their sentiments, to call for a system of moral relativism when it comes to governments. Respect the rights of governments, not individuals. Such a way of thinking believes that the world must be inclusive of different types of political systems, from the freest to the most oppressive. It eschews any sort of moral foundation when it comes to the rights of individuals or sound economic thinking. It subscribes to the fantasy that different political systems work for different countries.

This is empirically false, which is why the current rules-based international order holds that human rights and open markets are the universal standards for good state conduct.

Take a look at any economic freedom index. There is a powerful correlation between prosperity and free markets. Objective metrics such as infant mortality rates, educational attainment, calorie consumption, life expectancy, and other desirable indicators are all better in richer countries than poorer countries. Basic political science and legal theory tell us that checks and balances are necessary for an accountable government, whether that be preventing the arbitrary use of power or full-on massacres.

Think about it; qualified immunity, a doctrine granting protections for police in the United States against being sued for infringing on a private citizen’s rights, already causes enough problems here. Imagine if an entire government had such privileges? A restrained and gridlocked government is far preferable to an unrestrained and power-drunk one.

Finally, there’s the basic truth that governments cannot run society; they merely exist to facilitate a productive natural order by securing rights and establishing peace. Commerce, invention, culture, and trade arises spontaneously without central dictate. This is why societies in command economies like Maoist China were incredibly bleak and drab. This is also why former Soviet Union president Boris Yeltsin was so amazed and awestruck when he visited a grocery store in the United States. The New Haven Register notes,

“He told his fellow Russians in his entourage that if their people, who often must wait in line for most goods, saw the conditions of U.S. supermarkets, there would be a revolution.”

Key Takeaways

People will always try to find some superficial reason for why a Communist state is failing, whether it’s because of sanctions, resource shortages, inflation, civil unrest, or what have you. These are all fine and good but they ultimately fail to see the elephant in the room. Or in this case, the highly authoritarian, oppressive, and economically incompetent system in place.

We live in an age where ignorance is a choice when it comes to the superiority of a free and open society. The quicker we stop averting our eyes and look at the facts, the quicker we can move towards a world where every individual, regardless of their geographical and political fortune, can live free and prosper.

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This article was published on July 17, 2021 and is reproduced with permission from AIER, American Institute for Economic Research.

Big Batteries Could Be Bigger Bombs Than Beirut Fertilizer

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

It turns out storing Megawatts of high-density energy in a confined space is “like a bomb”. Who could have seen that coming, apart from everyone who understands what a megawatt is?

Clean, green, noisy, and explosive.

And they are “unregulated” in the UK.

GWPF

UK’s giant battery ‘farms’ spark fears of explosions that can reach temperatures of 660C
Amy Oliver- Mail on Sunday

…according to a troubling new report from leading physicists, these vast batteries amount to electrical bombs with the force of many hundreds of tons of TNT.

With the potential for huge explosions, fires, and clouds of toxic gas, they could devastate towns and villages nearby, says Wade Allison, emeritus professor of physics at Oxford University and co-author of the report.

The batteries, designed as reservoirs of spare electricity for when the wind doesn’t blow or the sun fails to shine, are spreading around the British countryside. And this, says Prof Allison and his fellow scientists, could spell catastrophe.

It’s like a potential bomb,’ he says. ‘When batteries catch fire, you can’t just squirt water on them and put out the flames. It’s evident from our research that nothing has been done to tackle this problem.’

Given the size of the proposed plants, Prof Allison says this could, in theory, lead to an explosion several times bigger than the one that destroyed the harbour in Beirut last year.

The threat of fire is not merely theoretical. South Korea saw 23 battery farm fires in just two years. A recent battery fire in Illinois burned for three days and thousands of residents were evacuated.

Such blazes release highly toxic gases. One – hydrogen fluoride – is lethal if inhaled, and causes irreversible health effects after an hour of exposure, according to Public Health England.

Meanwhile, 3 – 4,000 people were evacuated in Morris Illinois the week before last, as 100 tons of batteries burned. The fire burned for days. They could not use water or foam, and in the end, the burning batteries were smothered with 28 tons of cement.

These were run-of-the-mill cell phone and car batteries.

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This article was published on July 16, 2021 and is reproduced with permission from CFACT, Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow.

Chaos And Calamity For College Republicans

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A close and contested election may spell the end for the influential party auxiliary.

This past Saturday, the College Republicans National Committee held their biannual convention to elect their national leadership. To say the elections descended into chaos would be an understatement; what happened was closer to a calamity for the organization.

The election was between two factions: a reform ticket led by Arizona’s Judah Waxelbaum and an establishment ticket led by Virginia’s Courtney Britt. The two sides had exchanged heated accusations for months leading up to the election, many of them the routine party politics observers should expect during any election. But the stakes were dramatically escalated when the incumbent national chairman, Chandler Thornton, stripped several state federations supporting the reform ticket of their delegations to the national convention to support his preferred successor, Britt.

The brazen attempt to rig the election was shocking to members of the College Republicans and even drew the attention of influential elected officials. House Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik, Senator John Boozman, and Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush, elected officials in states that the CRNC stripped delegates from, released statements supporting the disenfranchised students. Several other state Republican parties also weighed in on behalf of their collegiate counterparts.

Despite the enormous outcry from elected officials and the party grassroots, the CRNC Convention moved forward. The day’s business mainly consisted of heated debate and party-line votes. Courtney Britt delegates systematically voted to strip Waxelbaum-supporting state federations of their delegations to the convention. The plan worked: Courtney Britt was narrowly elected the next chairwoman of the College Republicans.

Or so she thought, as it has become clear her victory was pyrrhic. In the aftermath of the election, outraged state federations across the country began to consider disaffiliation from the CRNC, which would leave Courtney Britt the humiliated chairwoman who broke a 139-year-old party auxiliary. This includes large state federations such as Florida and Pennsylvania, which were stripped of delegates. The Texas and New York College Republicans have already called meetings to formalize their exits. Asked for comment, Texas College Republicans Chairman Brandon Kiser confidently stated, “our vote to exit the CRNC will be unanimous.”

It is not clear how a chairwoman who scorned influential elected Republicans, disenfranchised her members, and set off an organizational secession crisis will be able to rebuild the College Republicans National Committee. After the disaffiliations, it can hardly accurately be referred to as a “National Committee.” The organization is now on life support, and the work to rebuild will fall to the tens of thousands of College Republican grassroots activists on campus. While the CRNC concerns itself with power politics and fiasco, campus conservatives can at least take solace in the honesty and decency of their fellow grassroots activists, upon whom the burden to fight the left without party resources will now fall.

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This article was published on July 19, 2021 and is reproduced with permission from The American Conservative

New Book Shows Top U.S. General Comparing Trump Supporters To Nazis Seeking A ‘Coup’

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Anyone who looked at the events of 2020 and projected a coup attempt onto Donald Trump has no place in senior government leadership, let alone a Dairy Queen serving Blizzards.

What better way to know the U.S. military is compromised—aside from racially extremist training and leftist propaganda videos—than when its top officer ignores widespread violence from one political faction while calling isolated violence from another a “coup”?

CNN, an outlet we know from sinking ratings is having an identity crisis post-Trump, published a preview last week of a new book titled “I Alone Can Fix It: Donald J. Trump’s Catastrophic Final Year,” by Washington Post reporters Carol Leonnig and Philip Rucker. The 2,300-word piece declares as follows about Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Mark Milley.

The book recounts how for the first time in modern US history the nation’s top military officer, whose role is to advise the president, was preparing for a showdown with the commander in chief because he feared a coup attempt after Trump lost the November election …The authors explain Milley’s growing concerns that personnel moves that put Trump acolytes in positions of power at the Pentagon after the November 2020 election, including the firing of Defense Secretary Mark Esper and the resignation of Attorney General William Barr, were the sign of something sinister to come.

I am sure these Pulitzer-Prize winning writers might even strike up a film deal with their 592-page Trump Derangement Syndrome manual. Anyone who looked at the events of 2020 and projected a coup attempt onto Donald Trump has no place in senior government leadership, let alone a Dairy Queen serving Blizzards.

“They may try, but they’re not going to f-cking succeed,” Milley is quoted as telling his deputies, according to Leonnig and Rucker. “You can’t do this without the military. You can’t do this without the CIA and the FBI. We’re the guys with the guns.” He also reportedly told his aides, “This is a Reichstag moment. The gospel of the Führer.”

Yes, this is Milley juxtaposing elected oversight of the U.S. military with the government of Adolf Hitler. What sound military leadership and strategic guidance can a general provide if he has determined that the president of the United States is comparable to a dictator who killed approximately 6 million people?

Let’s not forget who Milley is. This is the same left-wing media darling who said unironically in congressional testimony that “white rage” was behind the Capitol breach, deflecting on the military’s relationship with critical race theory (CRT). “White rage” was coined in Emory University professor Carol Anderson’s 2016 book “White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide” as “the operational function of white supremacy” that “undermine[s] African American achievement and advancement.”

Let that sink in. The highest-ranking and most senior official in the U.S. military not only believes in white privilege but also that such privilege could lead to the president coordinating a coup upon losing the election. Notwithstanding that the breach began 20 minutes before Trump even finished speaking that Wednesday afternoon, it is vital that we clarify one fact.

January 6 was not an insurrection, nor a coup. According to eyewitnesses and visual evidence such as live streamed videos, the Capitol breach was a riot perpetrated by a small minority of a large crowd of mostly peaceful demonstrators.

Whereas the Capitol breach was a largely disorganized meandering of MAGA-hat flag-wavers taking pictures in Democrat offices, a coup is an attempt to violently overthrow the government. No serious person can say, based on the available evidence, that the individuals in the Capitol that day aimed to destroy our republic, or even to harm public officials. The only person purposefully killed that day was an unarmed civilian shot by security forces. Jan. 6 was a stupid stunt, not a coup.

Milley’s characterization of this event, according to the book, tells a different story. Speaking to senior leaders in preparation for President Joe Biden’s inauguration on January 20, he once more compared his fellow countrymen to Nazis.

“Here’s the deal guys: These guys are Nazis,” he said, “they’re boogaloo boys, they’re Proud Boys. These are the same people we fought in World War II. We’re going to put a ring of steel around this city and the Nazis aren’t getting in.”

They put a ring of steel around the city alright. It took six months for the government to take down the metal fencing around the Capitol, and the left still mendaciously seeks a 9/11-style commission. The FBI claimed to strike gold when they confiscated a riot suspect’s LEGO set three weeks ago.

It’s long past time to tell it like it is. The U.S. military, illustrated by Milley’s testimony likening national security threats from China and Russia to “climate change” and “infrastructure,” has mangled priorities. Milley is a symptom of institutional decay. 

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This article was published on July 19, 2021 and is reproduced with permission from The Federalist.

How Democrats Could Steal the Midterms

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By now everyone with two working brain cells knows, or pretends not to know, that Democrats cheated on a colossal scale to get Whisperin’ Joe into the White House.  So it’s safe to say that Republicans, having wised up to the Donks’ stratagems and skullduggery, will capture both House and Senate in next year’s midterms.  Right?  Yes.  That is, assuming elections actually take place on November 8, 2022.

Who doubts that Democrats, with a death grip on power now, are capable of anything to keep Pelosi and Schumer on top and Biden’s cabal in the White House calling the shots?  Well, in a takeaway from those absconding Dem Texas legislators, you can’t be defeated if you don’t show up for the game.

Fixing a presidential election proved simple; given the number of candidates involved, rigging midterms would be a reach.  An alternative?  Regarding national contests, things get complicated, but here are two money quotes from a 2004 Congressional Research Service report on federal elections: Congress would have the power, by statute, to “postpone … House and Senate elections,” and “Congress could enact a statute delegating the authority to postpone an election to the Executive Branch.”  Justification for either action?  “Terrorism,” “calamitous events,” and the ambiguous “national emergency” — such as, say, civil disorder on a massive scale leading up to Election Day.

Consider this scenario: on November 6, 2022, two days before federal elections, mayhem breaks out in New York, Chicago, Seattle, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, and other blue cities across the country.  Masked provocateurs roam the streets, damaging property, assaulting innocents, fighting the police officers confronting them, and targeting polling stations for burning.  To sow confusion, a few are wearing MAGA hats.  Mayors and governors appear caught by surprise and announce that it will take days to get the National Guard in to quell disturbances.

The left and its allies in the media will highlight the disturbances and accuse white supremacists and Trump sympathizers of fomenting unrest in hopes of dissuading voters from leaving home to cast ballots for Democrat House and Senate candidates.  The January 6, 2021 “insurrection” idiocy (with American citizens in custody for months for trespassing) will be revived by the MSM to muddy the waters….

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Continue reading this article published July 20, 2021 at American Thinker.

Fact-Checking 6 Claims at Senate Democrats’ Voting Law Hearing

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Senate Democrats took their push to nullify state election laws on the road Monday, holding a “field hearing” in Atlanta to attack Georgia’s recent election reforms and promote their bill to eliminate voter ID and other requirements.

Only Democrat members of the Senate Rules and Administration Committee showed up to question witnesses, also all Democrats.

Committee Chairwoman Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., said Republicans had the opportunity to call a witness to defend the Georgia law, but didn’t request one. A spokesperson for the committee’s ranking member, Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., didn’t respond Monday to The Daily Signal’s emails and phone inquiries on this point.

The hearing, held at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, included numerous assertions, some true, but others debunked in previous fact checks.

Here’s a look at six big claims from the hearing in Atlanta, which Democrats titled “Protecting the Vote.”

1. ‘Hurdles’ to Ballot Drop Boxes

Sen. Raphael Warnock, D-Ga., isn’t a member of the Rules and Administration Committee, but was the first witness in his home state. Warnock, who took office in January, criticized Georgia’s election reform law for “reducing the number of drop boxes where voters can return those ballots.”

Klobuchar jumped in later to say, “If you’re looking for evil, you can find it pretty easily” in the Georgia law.

“Drop-off boxes cannot stay open beyond the time of the early voting,” Klobuchar said, adding, “Some of these voters were working day and night, several jobs, then they can’t go to a drop-off box.”

The fact is that ballot drop boxes weren’t used in Georgia nor in most other states before the 2020 election, which took place during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Georgia election officials provided drop boxes to collect voters’ ballots based on Gov. Brian Kemp’s emergency order to address voting concerns during the pandemic.

But for Senate Bill 202, passed by Georgia lawmakers, officials wouldn’t have to provide drop boxes in future elections. That said, fewer drop boxes will be available as those elections presumably take place without a pandemic.

Also, the new law restricts voting by drop box to hours when early in-person voting is available.

Each county in Georgia must provide at least one drop box under the law. But boxes will have to be located near early-voting sites and be accessible for dropping off absentee ballots when those polling locations are open.

2. ‘Big Lie’

Democrat senators and witnesses argued that the law in Georgia and other election reforms across the United States were prompted by former President Donald Trump’s claim that his election loss in November to President Joe Biden was fraudulent.

“We saw record-breaking voter turnout in our last elections—participation that should have been celebrated—get attacked by craven politicians, and, spurred on by the big lie, these same actors are now rolling back voting rights in a way that is unprecedented in size and scope since the Jim Crow era,” Warnock said.

Biden beat Trump by about 12,000 votes out of 4.9 million cast, according to official final results, to win Georgia’s 16 electoral votes.

Georgia state Rep. Bill Mitchell, a Democrat and president of the National Black Caucus of State Legislators, called the November election a major success.

“I define its success not by our candidates’ winning their elections, but by the fact that when you have as many people vote as we did in the 2020 election cycle, with as few problems, with all challenges being dismissed—you have to consider that to be successful,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell later said “The Heritage Foundation and others” were pushing election reform legislation.

The Heritage Foundation, a leading conservative think tank, is the parent organization of The Daily Signal.

“When you have the highest levels of voter participation, combined with the lowest levels of challenges, why would you want to change that?” Mitchell said.

However, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution last week reported that digital ballot images show that Fulton County election officials scanned about 200 ballots two times in the November election. Skeptics of the election results argue that apparent double counting is evidence of a need for a closer examination of ballots in Georgia. 

The newspaper noted that the discovery was unlikely to change the election results in Georgia. But some conservative commentators, such as Fox News Channel’s Tucker Carlson, expressed concern about the finding.

The duplication of at least 200 ballots is evidence of problems with tallying votes in Georgia, but far from proof that the state’s election results were affected in Biden’s favor. 

3. ‘Adequate Polling Locations’

One of the more compelling witnesses was neither a lawmaker nor an activist, but a voter named Jose Segarra. The Air Force veteran told his story of waiting in line for hours.

“I, along with thousands of Georgians, had to wait for hours in order to cast my vote in the 2020 general election,” he said.

“Our government needs to ensure that we have adequate systems and processes in place to allow every eligible voter to cast their ballot without such undue burdens,” Segarra said without specifying federal or state government, adding:

 

To do this, we need to have an adequate number of polling locations and these locations to be properly resourced and open for as expansive a period as possible. Voters should have the opportunity to vote on Saturdays and Sundays. Lots of people work on Saturdays, so Sundays need to be an option. It would also make it much easier for some people to vote if Election Day were a federal holiday.

Georgia’s new election law does provide “additional voting equipment or poll workers to precincts containing more than 2,000 electors.”

The law added early voting on two Saturdays and one Sunday that previously were not available to Georgians, stating:

 

Requiring two Saturday voting days and two optional Sunday voting days will dramatically increase the total voting hours for voters across the state of Georgia, and all electors in Georgia will have access to multiple opportunities to vote in person on the weekend for the first time.

Under the new law, counties in Georgia have flexibility to open early voting for as long as from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., or from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at minimum.

Previously, some rural counties didn’t provide for early voting for eight hours on a workday, The Washington Post reported.

Thus, the law actually expanded hours for early voting. 

4. ‘Mass Challenges’

Warnock announced new legislation he is co-sponsoring with fellow Senate Democrats Jeff Merkley of Oregon, Mark Warner of Virginia, and Jon Ossoff of Georgia. Ossoff, like Warnock, took office in January after defeating a Republican incumbent in a special election.

The legislation, called the Preventing Election Subversion Act, seeks to prevent the overturning of elections based on mass challenges or by legislators controlling the makeup of a state board of elections.

The proposal is tied directly to provisions that Warnock said are in SB 202, the basis of Georgia’s new law.

Warnock said Georgia’s law would let “a single person make unlimited, mass challenges to the ability of other Georgians to vote, clearing the way for baseless accusations.”

The language of the law does make it more difficult for government officials to outright dismiss a complaint about election procedures and ballots. Specifically, it says:

 

Any elector [voter] of a county or municipality may challenge the qualifications of any person applying to register to vote in the county or municipality and may challenge the qualifications of any elector of the county or municipality whose name appears on the list of electors. Such challenges shall be in writing and shall specify distinctly the grounds of the challenge.

There shall not be a limit on the number of persons whose qualifications such elector may challenge. Upon such challenge being filed with the [local] board of registrars, the registrars shall set a hearing on such challenge within ten business days after serving notice of the challenge.

As another justification for his legislation, Warnock argued that Georgia’s new law “allows partisan officials in the state Legislature to control our state board of elections and take over local election administrators, and it allows them to engage in these takeovers even as the votes are still being cast.”

The Associated Press reported in March that under the new law, the Legislature does indeed have an increased role in the State Election Board, but it can’t overturn elections at a whim, as Warnock seemed to suggest. 

Georgia’s elected secretary of state has a diminished role in elections under the new law. This is the basis for Democrats’ claim that partisan politics could play a role.

“The secretary of state will no longer chair the State Election Board, becoming instead a non-voting ex-officio member,” Georgia Public Broadcasting explained in a report. “The new chair would be nonpartisan but appointed by a majority of the state House and Senate. The chair would not be allowed to have been a candidate, participate in a political party organization or campaign or [have] made campaign contributions for two years prior to being appointed.”

5. ‘Rushed Through’

Georgia state Sen. Sally Harrell, D-Dunwoody, said the Republican-sponsored law lacked adequate input from Democrats in the state Legislature.

“Election bills were rushed through without public input and voted out along party lines,” Harrell said. “Questions addressed to bill authors by minority members were frequently answered dishonestly and disrespectfully. … In the nine years I have served in the [Georgia] General Assembly, I have never seen such blatant disregard for the legislative process as I did with the passage of SB 202.”

Previous media reporting shows the legislation moved quickly through the Legislature to Kemp’s desk. Questioning this speed has been a consistent line among critics, including the U.S. Justice Department.

Assistant U.S. Attorney General Kristen Clarke, who is leading the federal lawsuit against Georgia’s voting law, has said the bill was “a rushed process that departed from normal practice and procedure.”

“The version of the bill that passed the state Senate … was three pages long,” Clarke said in June during a press conference announcing the litigation. “Days later, the bill ballooned into over 90 pages in the House. The House held less than two hours of floor debate on the newly inflated SB 202 before Gov. Kemp signed it into law the same day.”

6.  Water Bottles, Ballot Harvesting

Warnock also complained that Georgia’s election law is “making it harder for community organizations to assist voters, whether from requesting a ballot to just handing out a bottle of water.”

The law prohibits campaign workers from distributing food, drink, or anything else of value to waiting voters, and from setting up a table within 150 feet of the building or 25 feet of a voter.

However, the law specifically allows official poll workers, as opposed to campaign workers, to provide water to voters. 

As for the “community organizations” Warnock cited, the law prohibits ballot harvesting, a controversial practice in which  political operatives obtain large numbers of ballots from election officials and then deliver the ballots to those officials once they’ve been voted.

The practice has been used to achieve fraud in several elections, among them a North Carolina congressional race later overturned in court and a Texas mayor’s race that led to multiple indictments.

*****

This article was published on July 19, 2021 and is reproduced with permission from Daily Signal.

JFK Colluded With The Russians

Estimated Reading Time: 5 minutes

But Trump was vilified and persecuted for unproven allegations of collusion.

I’m far from being a Trump groupie or apologist but do love to read history, especially when it reveals that a beloved figure from the past had been guilty of the same accusations leveled today against a presently maligned figure, whatever the party affiliation of the accusers and accused.

And I never tire of being reminded of how the American commentariat and intelligentsia have been so easily snookered throughout history by suave, debonair, charismatic, articulate leaders.

Trump was accused of colluding with the Russians in winning the presidency. It would appear that John F. Kennedy actually colluded with the Russians in winning the presidency.

Below is a passage from the wonderful work of history, “Nuclear Folly,” by Serhii Plokky, a book that details the events leading up to the Cuban Missile Crisis.

[Soviet Premier] Khrushchev wanted to help Kennedy win the election [because he thought Kennedy was weak and inexperienced] and ordered his KGB aides to do all they could to achieve that goal.  The KGB complied, setting up a number of meetings that in today’s parlance would qualify as nothing less than “collusion” between Kennedy’s presidential campaign and the Kremlin.  Soon after Kennedy had won his party’s presidential nomination, Yurii Barsukov, a KGB officer posing as a reporter for the Soviet newspaper Izvestiia, knocked on the office door of no less a figure than Robert Kennedy, who was running his brother’s electoral campaign. He asked Robert what Moscow could do to help his brother.

A month after Kennedy’s election, the KGB agent met again with Robert Kennedy. Later, believing that Kennedy owed him his victory, Khrushchev said to a group of Soviet political leaders and scientists, “It can be said that we elected him.” 

Then came a number of JFK follies, especially the Bay of Pigs invasion, as well his brother Robert acting like a spoiled Ivy League frat boy as attorney general, a position he held in an egregious conflict of interest, given that the president was his brother.

The Cuban missile crisis came after the Bay of Pigs—a crisis in which the Kennedys have been portrayed as saving the world from nuclear war.

Many historians have written that Khrushchev had placed nuclear-armed missiles in Cuba because the U.S. had done the same in the Soviet backyard of Turkey. But as “Nuclear Folly” clarifies, the primary reason for Khrushchev’s decision was because of his certainty that JFK would invade Cuba with an overwhelming military force, thus making up for his earlier botched attempt. Without placing missiles on Cuba within easy range of the U.S., Khrushchev knew he couldn’t stop an invasion of the island, due to the U.S. having a huge advantage in long-range ballistic missiles.

In other words, if JFK had not okayed the Bay of Pigs fiasco, the Cuban missile crisis might not have happened.

Another book reveals other examples of beloved presidents engaging in misdeeds that Trump has been accused of. The book is “The Sack of Detroit,” by Kenneth Whyte, about how opportunistic politicians, so-called consumer activists, left-leaning intellectuals, and a lazy, gullible media almost brought General Motors to its knees. The book shows how a well-researched account of history can be about one subject but reveal historical gems along the way on other subjects.

Among the gems is how Franklin Delano Roosevelt used government power to go after Republicans, similar to how today’s Democrats have gone after Trump and his associates. For instance:

He [FDR] roused the Treasury and the Justice Department to investigate a list of “economic royalists” for tax evasion, including Andrew Mellon, the former Republican treasury secretary and, in FDR’s estimation, the “master mind among the malefactors of great wealth.” With FDR’s knowledge and active support, the government pursued Mellon relentlessly and well beyond the limits of the law and, despite an absence of incriminating evidence, charged him with tax evasion. The former secretary was chased to his grave, only to be exonerated by the Board of Tax Appeals three months after his death in 1937.

Other gems in “The Sack of Detroit” are about JFK and RFK. For example, when steel industry executives angered President Kennedy by raising prices against his wishes, Attorney General Robert Kennedy:

ordered the FBI and CIA to initiate dozens of wiretaps and spying operations on steel executives. He summoned a grand jury on price-fixing and sent FBI agents to the offices and homes of steel executives to gather records. “We’re going for broke,” he said. “Their expense accounts and where they’d been and what they were doing. . . . I told the FBI to interview them all—march into their offices . . . subpoena for their personal records . . . subpoena for their company records.”

In supporting these vengeful acts, the president mused, “Do you want the government to go back to hotel bills that time you were in Schenectady to find who was with you?  Too many hotel bills and nightclub expenses would be hard to get by the weekly wives’ bridge group out at the country club.”

The philandering president would know about philandering.

He didn’t know as much about business or economics, however, other than to say the right cliches publicly for political gain.

JFK surrounded himself with Ivy League eggheads. Only 6 percent of his appointments came from the business community, versus 42 percent under Eisenhower. Harvard-educated Robert McNamara was one of the 6 percent.The defense secretary and former Ford CEO would later exhibit profound hubris and myopia about Vietnam.

One of the president’s closest advisors next to his brother Bobby was his special assistant Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr., the bow-tied historian from Harvard and close friend of the anti-business economist John Kenneth Galbraith, who was the author of the best-selling book, “The Affluent Society.” Schlesinger would go on to write a sanitized history of the Kennedy administration, leaving out such abuses of power as the vendetta against steel executives.

The president’s brain trust, as well as the president himself, looked down on business people and the grubby business of business—just as Barack Obama would do, and just as many of Joe Biden’s advisors do today while gladly taking campaign contributions from Wall Street and Big Tech.

JFK was contemptuous of those who spent their lives “chasing the dollar” and had minds “clogged by illusion and platitudes.” This is from the epitome of a trust-fund baby whose father had made him the beneficiary of a $10 million trust fund, which in today’s dollars would be worth over $90 million.

Schlesinger made deprecatory comments about business similar to those made by Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren today. He referred to the business people in the Eisenhower administration as “God-anointed apostles of free enterprise” and accused them of speaking in platitudes and practicing a “complaisant politics of boredom.”

Given such history, one wonders what would have happened had Trump restrained his worst impulses, had been more measured and thoughtful in his speaking and tweeting, had listened more to the grownups in his administration, had played to the egos of the press, and had not hurled juvenile insults against American and world leaders.

My guess is that Trump would’ve been vilified and persecuted anyway, if for no other reason than he was a grubby businessman and not a perceived sophisticate from academia or government.

Getting Red In Your Ed

Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes

It is well known that America’s schoolchildren are woefully ignorant of their national history and government. Majorities of young adults no longer feel grateful to be an American, undoubtedly because they fail to comprehend the precious freedoms to which they were born.

So are the teacher’s unions who educate our children concerned about this deplorable situation? Do they have a plan to correct it? You know the answer.

Instead, the National Education Association recently voted to ensure that all American school children are comprehensively taught Critical Race Theory. This is the unscientific notion that white people are inherently, incorrigibly racist and thus America’s foundational values were and are bigotry and racial oppression.

As the NEA puts it, “all K – 12 schools should teach children that White supremacy, anti-Blackness, anti-indigenity, racism, patriarchy, capitalism, and anthropocentrism form the foundation of our society“. Furthermore “to deny opportunities to teach truth about Black, Brown and other marginal races minimizes the necessity for students to build efficacy”.

Not sure what that last means, but basically nobody is trying to prevent teaching about slavery, Jim Crow or the struggles racial minorities have faced. It should be balanced with the recognition that America has come a long way in correcting injustices and that there are boundless reasons to feel pride and love for our country.

The NEA means business. They’re allocating a $127,000 addition to normal operating funds to push CRT. More ominously, this allocation includes funding an “opposition research” effort meant to smear parents and organizations opposed to racist propagandizing of their children. Charming.

These same unions also spearheaded the effort to keep schools closed long after it was known that school children were neither the victims nor spreaders of serious Covid disease. They demanded political favors, like forcing private schools to also close and limiting new charter schools, as the ransom for their return to the work they were being paid to do. Some schools are not open even yet.

The results of their mulish selfishness are trickling in. It’s bad. Students in every grade are failing classes and falling behind.

Preliminary research suggests that students will return with less than 50% of normal learning gains in math and under 70% in other subjects. Since these are averages, disadvantaged and disabled learners will fare even worse. Catching up this much academically is difficult, if not impossible. It will take years if ever, to undo the damage.

Meanwhile, our nation’s teachers’ unions are doubling down on the effort to turn public schools into centers for radical indoctrination. History is now taught as the ceaseless struggle between oppressors and victims. A substitution of “race” for “class“ is the only deviation from classical Marxist theory.

Students in biology are taught that gender is merely a social construct and that they are free to select theirs “don’t let anyone tell you otherwise“. Math instruction is threatened by “social justice“ warriors who deem requiring one correct answer and showing your work to be “white“.

Great literary works are being culled, and our history obliterated, for lack of adherence to modern standards of political correctness. Shakespeare and Steinbeck are among those facing permanent removal.

Some teachers are refusing to teach “To Kill a Mockingbird“ because of racist language and the depiction of a “white savior“. That’s rich. Arguably the most influential anti-racist novel of modern times is shunned because Atticus is a decent white man who helps blacks and that doesn’t fit CRT’s malignant stereotypes.

In a few months, they’ve gone from claiming CRT isn’t taught in K-12 to insisting that instruction must be universal. Fortunately, grassroots and parent groups are waking up and fighting back. They should consider resisting not only objectionable courses of instruction, but the politicized education system that creates them.

Clear majorities, including 75% to 85% of minority parents, favor charter schools and other forms of school choice. Yet there is stiff political resistance to reforms like Educational Savings Accounts, which empower parents. Arizona’s legislative Democrats this session voted unanimously to deny parents these options, thus denying them leverage in their dealings with unresponsive unions and schools.

So is public education meant to benefit the big people or the little people?

*****
Thomas C. Patterson, MD is a retired Emergency Medicine physician, Arizona state Senator and Arizona Senate Majority Leader in the ’90s. He is a former Chairman, Goldwater Institute.