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David Ripley: Effort to Defund PP Hangs by a Thread in Senate

November 14th, 2015 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

We had a great deal of hope going into this latest Congressional effort to defund the abortion mafia known as Planned Parenthood. It seemed that the reconciliation process offered a perfect opportunity to obtain a clean Senate vote and avoid the filibuster by Planned Parenthood’s Democrat patrons in that body. The reconciliation process requires only a simple majority to pass.

The measure to defund Planned Parenthood has already passed the House by a large margin, and awaits Senate action.

Yesterday, the Senate Parliamentarian gave her approval to the measure, certifying that the bill could be enacted through the “Byrd Rule” – allowing a simple majority. Everything seemed on course for an historic vote to end the unholy partnership between the American taxpayer and Planned Parenthood – forced upon us for over forty years by a badly misguided Congress.

And now we learn that our hope hangs by a thread. It is no surprise that the liberal Republicans in the caucus are balking. But there are still enough votes if conservatives stand tall. But that weird purity virus has surfaced – threatening to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

Sens. Mike Lee, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz are threatening to vote against the reconciliation bill because it doesn’t go far enough in repealing provisions of ObamaCare – another feature of the bill.

What makes this so darn frustrating and even silly is the simple fact that Obama will veto the measure in any event. Purity makes little sense in this context.

What does make sense is for the entire Republican Congress to make a final and clear statement about ending our partnership with Planned Parenthood. While the effort to improve health care for women will require a new president to take effect – Republicans are foolish not to force an Obama veto heading into a critical election year. Instead of losing this fight over defunding in the byzantine halls of the Senate – let us expose Obama as the champion of abortion, the defender of human baby organ trafficking.

Please take a moment to call the offices of the normally pro-Life Senators having trouble figuring this situation out:

Sen. Marco Rubio: 202-224-3041

Sen. Ted Cruz: 202-224-5922

Sen. Mike Lee: 202-224-5444

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Posted in Family Matters, Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues, Presidential Politics | No Comments »

November 14th, 2015 by Halli

By Richard Larsen

It’s hard to think of any other way to characterize the off-year elections results across the nation, than that the rejection of liberalism and progressivism continues unabated. Races across the country, and even some key social-issue elections, don’t portend well for those on the left of the political spectrum.

Perhaps the most significant race was for the governorship of Kentucky. Matt Bevin, a political outsider and Tea Party activist, was trounced just a year ago by 25 points in a primary defeat by the Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell. A year later, he’s the governor elect of the state.

There are many takeaways from his success, but the most obvious is that his conservatism was across the board, from fiscal to social. While the Obama administration has been holding Kentucky up as an exemplary success story for Obamacare, Bevin ran against it, based on costs, cost of coverage, and declining healthcare provision under the ACA. He also ran on the social side of the issue, proposing to defund Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion provider in the nation.

And he embraced and supported the cause of Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis who refused to issue marriage licenses for same-sex marriages because of her religious convictions. And according to Davis, the governor elect even (gasp) prayed with her when she was incarcerated.

His first order of business is to make the Bluegrass State a right to work state. Diminishing union political clout and increasing voter focus on economic issues could have more broad ramifications even beyond Kentucky, and the southern states generally.

It’s difficult to say what the key factor was in Bevin’s victory. As recently as a day before the election, he was projected to lose by five points. Instead, he won by ten. But it’s hard to overstate the significance of a fiscal and social conservative winning the gubernatorial race in a seat that has only had one other Republican governor in the past 50 years. Oh, and his running mate, the Lt. Governor elect, Jenean Hampton, is now the first black elected to statewide office in the state’s history. And she’s also a Tea Party activist.

Elsewhere across the land, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, a close friend of the Clintons, went all-out to pick up at least one additional seat to give his party control of the state senate. He solicited PAC money from outside the state and by all accounts, outspent Republicans nearly 4 to 1, yet was unable to pick up even one seat. Interestingly, much of the outside money was advocating stricter gun control legislation. This may be indicative of the mood of the country toward restrictive 2nd Amendment efforts, which does not bode well for the left.

Houston had an Equal Rights Ordinance on their ballot that banned discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation. It had been passed by the Houston city council and had only been on the city ordinance books for three months, before voters overwhelmingly repealed it with Tuesday’s vote. Even the White House had weighed in on this local issue, but on the losing side of the argument.

In San Francisco, Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi was defeated. The sheriff received national attention when he steadfastly defended the city’s controversial “sanctuary city” policy of protecting illegal aliens, after illegal migrant Francisco Sanchez shot and killed a 32 year-old woman on the waterfront in July. But based solely on one logical vote, it’s entirely premature to claim voters in San Francisco may have actually found their marbles so long lost.

In Mississippi, Republican Governor Phil Bryant was easily reelected. The GOP also increased their majority in their House by nearly 10%, giving them nearly a super majority, defeating the House Minority Leader in the process. Voters in Ohio rejected liberalization of medical and recreational marijuana laws.

With but few exceptions, it was a banner election for liberty, free markets, economic growth, traditional social conventions and institutions, rule of law, and common sense governance. As boisterously as the mainstream media have been proclaiming the demise of the Tea Party, one can’t help but surmise, as did Mark Twain, that news of their death has been greatly exaggerated.

If anything, there seems to be a deepening and widening conviction that exceeds the traditional purview of the Tea Party, and is more fundamentally etched in the broader body politick. It’s gone mainstream. That conviction has been spawned, nurtured, and invigorated by none other than our community organizer in chief. He almost single-handedly has orchestrated the resurgence in the conservative ideals of American exceptionalism. Just as he’s been the most effective gun salesman over the past several years, he’s been the poster child of all that can go wrong when distinctly anti-American ideals are foisted upon the republic.

Since the 2010 midterms, the Democrat party has lost over 1,200 seats in government according to Real Clear Politics. That’s governorships, state senate, state house, town councils, county leadership, city councils, and mayors. Not only are they losing on economic issues, but they’re losing on the social issues. And it’s no surprise, for even though the left has been winning on so many fronts, the broader populace is not pleased. According to a Washington Post, ABC News poll in July, fully 63% of adult Americans are either strongly or somewhat uncomfortable with the direction of the country on social issues. We mustn’t forget who is driving that “uncomfortable” agenda.

With the socialist-left end of the political spectrum dutifully and ideologically represented by the Democrat party, the worst thing would be for Republicans to basically be the socialist-lite party. If the GOP wants to continue winning, it appears increasingly that the way for them to do so is by returning to the core values their party is based on, economically and socially.

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Posted in Guest Posts, Pocatello Issues, Politics in General, Presidential Politics, Taxes | No Comments »

David Ripley: Pelosi Appoints Democrats to Panel

November 9th, 2015 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

The new Speaker of the House is proceeding with plans to thoroughly investigate Planned Parenthood’s role in the national baby organ trafficking ring revealed over the summer. At first, Democrat Leader Nancy Pelosi indicated that she would refuse to appoint Democrats to the panel. But she has changed her mind.

Pelosi announced last week that six Democrats would represent her party on the select investigation committee. Not too surprisingly, all six members are candidates with ties to Planned Parenthood. In fact, between them, the Democrat members have collected over $81,000 in campaign checks from Planned Parenthood’s PAC over the years.

It would seem unlikely, therefore, that these particular congressional members will be too energetic in looking at Planned Parenthood. Rather, we can expect that they are on the panel to undermine the investigation by any means necessary.

The Democrats appointed to panel are: Jan Schawkowsky of Illinois; Jerrold Nadler of New York; Diana DeGette of Colorado; Jackie Speier of California; Susan DelBene of Washington and Bonnie Coleman of New Jersey.

In a further demonstration of the present perversion of the Democratic Party, Pelosi has denounced the panel as the “Republican’s Select Committee to Attack Women’s Health”.

Honestly, in what perverse universe does the chopping up and trafficking in babies have anything to do women? Or even abortion? The Select Committee is not charged with investigating abortion or abortion rights. It is tasked with looking at Planned Parenthood’s horrific side business, whereby it obtains additional profits by treating human babies as mere commodities.

One would think that there are enough Democrats left with a moral code strong enough to find such practices abhorrent and unacceptable in a nation like the United States. Perhaps we will yet see such persons stand up in coming months. But it is already clear that Leader Pelosi will once again use her power to protect the terribly guilty.

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Posted in Constitutional Issues, Family Matters, Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues, Presidential Politics, Taxes | No Comments »

Richard Larsen: Economic Freedom, Not Egalitarianism, Eradicates Poverty and Builds Wealth

November 9th, 2015 by Halli

by Richard Larsen

America was was intended to be a “shining city on a hill” of freedom, individual liberty, and unlimited opportunity. She was never intended to be a socialist state. Socialistic egalitarianism is strikingly antithetical to the American paradigm.

Founded in individual liberty, America has always been the one nation under heaven where equality of opportunity has taken precedence over equality of outcome. The whole concept of the “American Dream” is based on the individual freedom to become, to achieve, to build, sell, and succeed. This requires individual freedom (which is diminished proportionate to expanded governmental power), and a free market economy (not centralized planning, or government control over the means of production). Consequently, socialism in any of its iterations (communism, national socialism, fascism, and democratic-socialism) is philosophically, morally, and pragmatically, contrary to the principles upon which the republic was founded. Consequently, it is deductively anti-American.

To socialism, equality is paramount, rather than achievement and excellence. It ascribes value to workers not based upon their production and performance, but by the amount of time they put in. The net result is the rewarding of mediocrity rather than excellence.

By robbing Peter to pay Paul, the redistributive policies of socialism punish the producers, and rewards the non-producers. By so doing, not only is the heart and soul of a society inflicted with a loss of appetite for proactivity, creation, and production, but it becomes afflicted with an entitlement mentality of what the government, at the expense of the producers, can do for “me.” This makes individuals dependent on the state and the diminishing number of producers, since the government has nothing but what it takes from its citizens. This dependency can be for everything from food and energy to health care. In short, it strives for egalitarianism by debasing and defalcating from the successful, rather than providing means for elevating the disadvantaged.

As Danish author Mikkel Nissen explains, “Society becomes more and more deprived (in lack of ambition) and grows reliant upon the perfectly steady increase in entitlement benefits solidified through learned helplessness, successfully blinding society to the rapidly increasing collective oppression. This precise process of ambient socialism has taken place in the United States during the end of the twentieth century and continues to transpire ever more rapidly in the twenty-first century.”

Winston Churchill captured the essence of the failed and debilitating ideology; “Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy; its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.”

Logically then, it seems that those most ardent in their aspiration for egalitarianism seek not the elevation of a society, or a nation, but the demise thereof, by elevation of mediocrity over excellence; governmental thralldom over individual freedom; common misery over hope and the human spirit; micromanagement of the soul of man by the body politik, over personal responsibility and accountability.

If America ever devolves completely to the democratic-socialist level, it will constitute an abject rejection of the classical-liberal ideals upon which the republic was founded, placing foremost among those, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. For nowhere in our founding documents is there even an utterance of socialist egalitarianism for the concept is diametrically opposed to the American dream and spirit.

The greatest evil inflicted upon mankind was done in the name of egalitarianism, and the “common good,” for the “working man,” and is responsible for hundreds of millions of deaths, all sacrificed at the altar of equality. Any form of socialism or collectivism is destructive to the human spirit which yearns to be free. This societal degradation advances until fully contaminated with the lower denominator of mediocrity. The purported elevation of the impoverished is promised, yet never fully delivered, by centralized control.

The freedom, and concomitant free markets, which made America great and so economically viable, has done more to elevate the disadvantaged than any iteration of socialism has even dreamed of. Free market capitalism is the heart and soul of individual freedom, for without financial freedom, most other forms have little pertinence.

The Economist recently reported that the global poverty rate has shrunk 50 percent in the past two decades: “The world has lately been making extraordinary progress in lifting people out of extreme poverty. Between 1990 and 2010, their number fell by half as a share of the total population in developing countries, from 43% to 21% — a reduction of almost 1 billion people.” And what is it that has elevated the quality of living throughout the globe? Nothing but the proliferation of free-market capitalism. “The biggest poverty-reduction measure of all is liberalizing markets to let poor people get richer. That means freeing trade between countries (Africa is still cruelly punished by tariffs) and within them (China’s real great leap forward occurred because it allowed private business to grow),” the Economist explains.

What worked in America, is now working across the globe. Our efforts to incorporate even diluted elements of the failed ideology are ineffectual, as evidenced by the fact that our poverty rate is virtually the same now as it was when LBJ’s “Great Society” social programs were launched 50 years ago.

The ideological cadre of progressives who embrace the pernicious doctrines so antithetical to America’s soul are advocating, in short, principles that are anathema and perhaps traitorous to the nation. We can only hope, pray, and work to ensure that the next eight years, at least, feature a leadership that is dedicated to America and our founding principles, to hopefully unravel so much of the damage inflicted in recent years, and return to those precepts that made America great.

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Posted in Constitutional Issues, Guest Posts, Pocatello Issues, Taxes | No Comments »

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