republican party

Four Minutes of Hate: The Naked Bigotry Of The AFA's Bryan Fischer

Our colleague Peter Montgomery is scheduled to appear on "The Last Word" with Lawrence O'Donnell tonight to discuss the upcoming "The Response" prayer event that Texas Governor Rick Perry is organizing with the American Family Association and stocking with anti-gay activists.

To coincide with this appearance, we are also releasing a comprehensive report we have written on the American Family Association's Bryan Fischer entitled "The GOP's Favorite Hate-Monger: How the Republican Party Came to Embrace Bryan Fischer" which chronicles Fischer's long record of unmitigated bigotry:

Responsible politicians wouldn’t fawn over an unhinged activist who opposes civil rights and religious freedom for minorities, wants to make being gay a crime and decries his personal rivals as enemies of God, right? But that is exactly what is taking place today in the Republican Party, as likely and declared GOP presidential candidates line up to win the approval of Bryan Fischer, a radio talk show host and spokesman for the American Family Association.

Fischer’s unabashed bigotry is on full display throughout his writings and on-air rants. His entire career is based on leveling venomous attacks against gays and lesbians, American Muslims, Native Americans, progressives and other individuals and groups he detests. He wants to redefine the Constitution to protect only Christians, persecute and deport all American Muslims, prohibit gays and non-Christians from holding public office and impose a system of biblical law.

While Fischer’s views are undeniably shocking, what is most disturbing is his growing influence within not only the Religious Right but also the Republican Party.

And to celebate it's release, we decided to put together this "best of" video featuring some of Fischer's greatest hits - enjoy: 

David Barton's "Expertise" On African American History

Jason Cherkis of The Huffington Posts reports that, according to tax records, David Barton considers himself an expert on Black history:

David Barton, the Republican establishment’s favorite amateur historian, claims in tax records reviewed by HuffPost to be something of an expert on African-American history.

In filings with the Internal Revenue Service, Barton’s nonprofit, Wallbuilder Presentations, Inc., justified its tax-exempt status by highlighting among its "accomplishments" a video project “of the moral heritage and political history of African Americans."

As luck would have it, we actually wrote an entire report about the very video that Barton produced a few years ago called "Setting the Record Straight: American History in Black & White" ...  and I am sure you will be surprised to learn that it was utterly and intentionally misleading:

Though the program is billed as an attempt to recognize “the forgotten heroes and untold stories from our rich African American political history,” it is, in reality, a 90-minute effort to portray the Democratic Party as responsible for every problem that has ever plagued the African American community in America and imply that the Republican Party is the antidote. Barton’s website proudly claims that he “is currently breaking ground in the African-American community with his presentations” based on this DVD.

Throughout the program, Barton presents a staggeringly slanted, openly partisan, and tellingly incomplete view of American history. Barton focuses on the Democratic Party’s historical support for slavery and Jim Crow, but completely ignores the transformation of American politics brought about by the civil rights movement. Barton, of course, never mentions that the rise of the modern Republican Party was built on a “southern strategy” of embracing and exploiting the resentments of racist southern Democrats who joined the Republican Party after Democratic President Lyndon Baines Johnson pushed and signed landmark civil rights and voting rights legislation.

We even took several clips from Barton's program and included them in the report, and so I decided to edit a few of them together just to give you a sense of what sort of propaganda Barton is peddling in the DVD as he tries to link today's Democratic Party to the Ku Klux Klan and asserts that Democrats supported slavery just as they support abortion today:

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 5/17/11

Michele Bachmann

2012: More likely to run for president following Mike Huckabee's decision against running (CBS News, 5/16). 

Constitution: High school student challenges her to a debate on the Constitution as a result of her record of making incorrect statements (Minnesota Independent, 5/13). 

Herman Cain

Georgia: Wins praise for speech at Georgia GOP convention (Southern Political Report, 5/16). 

Florida: Tops field in Fort Lauderdale Tea Party straw poll (Sunshine State News, 5/16). 

Mitch Daniels

Reproductive Rights: Signs law defunding Planned Parenthood that costs thousands their health care, state millions of dollars (The Faster Times, 5/16).

2012: Members of Indiana Republican Party encourage Daniels to run during state convention (AP, 5/13).

Religious Right: Anti-choice activists upset Daniels weighed Condoleezza Rice as a running mate because she is pro-choice (Life News, 5/13). 

GOP: Reports say that Governors Haley Barbour, Chris Christie and Scott Walker would endorse Daniels (CBS News, 5/12). 

Newt Gingrich

Religious Right: Denies advisers' links to Dominionist theology (RWW, 5/16).

Medicare: Describes Paul Ryan's plan to privatize Medicare as "right wing social engineering" but previously said he would've voted for it (Think Progress, 5/16). 

Health Care: Makes inconsistent remarks over his past support for health care insurance mandates (Politico, 5/16). 

Iowa: Will make swing through Iowa this week following official announcement (Dubuque Telegraph Herald, 5/15). 

Jon Huntsman

Religious Right: Set to address Ralph Reed's Faith and Freedom Coalition (RWW, 5/16).

South Carolina: Huckabee's former state campaign chair announces his support for Huntsman (Politico, 5/16). 

Florida: Meets with key donors in Florida (St. Petersburg Times, 5/11). 

Roy Moore

Religious Right: Claims President Obama is "pushing his own immoral values without regard to what the people think or believe" (WND, 5/16). 

Campaign: Launches website for exploratory committee (RoyMoore2012.com).

Sarah Palin

PAC: Embarks on new direct mail campaign with focus on 2012 election (WaPo, 5/16). 

2012: Supporters hope that Huckabee's announcement will create an opening for Palin (Commentary, 5/16). 

Tim Pawlenty

South Carolina: Hires political director for South Carolina primary (The Hill, 5/17). 

Environment: Continues to apologize for past support of ‘cap and trade’ system (Minnesota Post, 5/17).

Mitt Romney

Fundraising: Raises over $10 million on Monday call-day in Las Vegas (WaPo, 5/17). 

Health Care: Defends state health plan that is analogous to federal health care law (NYT, 5/13). 

Rick Santorum

Medicare: Criticizes Gingrich for attacking Paul Ryan’s Medicare privatization proposal (The Hill, 5/16). 

Health Care: Knocks Romney for defending his Massachusetts health care law (The State Column, 5/13).

Boykin: Obama Creating Personal Brownshirt Army To Enforce Marxism

Last year, Retired General Jerry Boykin recorded a video for Rick Joyner's Oak Initiative in which he claimed that President Obama was using healthcare reform legislation as cover to establish a private Brownshirt army loyal only to him.

At the Oak Initiative Summit last month, Boykin reiterated and expanded upon that claim ... while also explaining that American Jews don't support the Republican Party because they mistakenly believe that Hitler was on the right when he was really "an extraordinarily off-the-scale leftist":

We have incrementally moved towards Marxism and now I think it's at an accelerated pace. There are lots of indicators as to exactly how we're moving along the lines of the Marxist model - if you look back historically at how societies, what they've done as they've moved toward Marxism, we're doing all of those things.

One of which is, you look at Hitler - and one of the most disgusting things I hear is people who call Hitler "the extreme right." The absolute opposite was true - it was the National Socialist Party, he was an extraordinarily off-the-scale leftist. But many Jews in America, for example, can't identify with the Republican Party because they're called the party of the right and they equate that to Hitler when in fact nothing could be further from the truth. So, that's just a data point.

One of the things that Hitler did was he established the Brownshirts. The Brownshirts where his constabulary force to control the population because, as you're making these radical changes, there has to be some entity that stands by you with the strength and the muscle to allow you to make these over the opposition and the protest of the sovereign, the people. So Hitler had the Brownshirts.

Well, in the lead-up to the election, during the campaigns, our current president said very openly, and you can find it on YouTube, if I am elected President , I will have a national civilian security force that is as large as and as powerful as the US military.

For what? Why do you need a national civilian security force?

Now most people say, well we haven't seen any signs of the administration doing that. Until you go back and read what nobody in Washington read, and that's the health care legislation that lays out a provision for the commissioning of officers to work directly for the President in time of a national emergency.

Now what would bring about a national emergency? An economic collapse, a terrorist attack, a natural disaster - we talked about all those things here - which would then allow for martial law. The foundation has been laid.

Geller: Obama Is An Illegitimate Child And Therefore An Illegitimate President

Pamela Geller’s rabid anti-Muslim activism helped her win friends in the conservative movement and the Republican Party, and she even had her own panel at CPAC earlier this year. But Geller has now been focusing her efforts on a different issue: Birtherism. Geller accused President Obama of doctoring his birth certificate and took to the Birther website WorldNetDaily to claim that Obama is ineligible to be president because his parents had a sham marriage. Virginia School of Law professor G. Edward White plainly points out that the term “natural born citizen” is “understood to mean a person born in the United States or born abroad to parents who are both American citizen” (emphasis mine) and had nothing to do with the children of purported “sham marriages.” But for Geller, who now professes to be an expert on Obama’s parents’ romantic life, even if Obama was born in the United States he can’t be considered a “natural born citizen” because the Founders wouldn’t have wanted “an illegitimate child of a foreign bigamist” to be President:

The release of Barack Hussein Obama I's immigration file is stunning in what it reveals and the questions it poses. BHO I's visa expired Aug. 8, 1961 (Barack Junior was born Aug. 4, 1961) – is that why he married Obama's mother? Stanley Ann Dunham was a white girl in a family way with a mixed-race child, desperate for legitimacy in a culture that condemned such behavior as abject immorality, and Barack Obama Sr. was a con man from Kenya desperate to stay in the USA. Was the marriage merely a business arrangement (she was 17 when she got pregnant)? Is that why it was so important to place the ads in the Hawaiian papers announcing the birth of the future president – because his father was about to be deported?

Stanley Ann Dunham could not have been so savvy as to know that BHO I was a Muslim polygamist. Yet clearly, Barack Hussein Obama Sr., was never divorced from his first wife in Kenya. The Immigration and Naturalization Service suspected that the elder Obama's marriage to Dunham was a sham, arranged strictly to secure immigration status for him. Despite the fact that BHO I had married Dunham, the government wasn't buying it: An INS official wrote in 1961 that the agency should "make sure an investigation is conducted as to the bona-fide of the marriage."



It is interesting to note that BHO I claims in the documents to have divorced first wife, Kezia, "verbally." According to the Shariah, a man can divorce his wife by repeating it three times. Further, when BHO I returned to Kenya, he apparently lived with his first Kenyan wife and his American third wife, suggesting that the "divorce" he ostensibly secured to marry Dunham was a transitory ruse.

That would make the president illegitimate. In 1787, illegitimate children had different rights. There is no way the founders of this great nation intended for an illegitimate child of a foreign bigamist to attain the highest, most powerful position in the new land.

Similarly, WND editor Joseph Farah maintains that if Obama is eligible to serve as president, then so are “anchor babies,” or the US-born children of illegal immigrants. Unfortunately for Farah, so-called “anchor babies” are in fact American citizens:

We have a pretender to the throne sitting in the highest office of the land – the most powerful elected position in the world.

America has, without a vote, without a constitutional amendment, without even a court decision, dumbed down the eligibility requirement for the presidency. And that is unacceptable. …

Americans do not want illegal aliens to serve as presidents. That's not what the founders envisioned at all. But conceding to Obama's eligibility will open the door to American presidents who were "anchor babies" – children born of illegal aliens born on U.S. soil.

That's not what the Constitution means. That's not what the founders intended. And it's not what Americans want today.

Exposing David Barton's Bunk

Today, People For the American Way released a new report entitled "Barton’s Bunk: Religious Right ‘Historian’ Hits the Big Time in Tea Party America" written by PFAW Senior Fellow Peter Montgomery that exposes David Barton's shoddy pseudo-history and why it matters: 

Barton’s growing visibility and influence with members of Congress and other Republican Party officials is troubling for many reasons: he distorts history and the Constitution for political purposes; he encourages religious divisiveness and unequal treatment for religious minorities; and he feeds a toxic political climate in which one’s political opponents are not just wrong, but evil and anti-God.

Scholars have criticized Barton for presenting facts out of context or in misleading ways, but that hasn’t stopped him from promoting his theories through books, television, and, yes, the textbooks that will teach the next generation of Americans. He promotes conspiracy theories about elites hiding the truth from average Americans in order to undermine the nation from within. Last summer, he declared that liberal and media attacks on the Tea Party were just like attacks on Jesus. In February, Barton spoke at the Connect 2011 Pastors Conference, where he said that Christians needed to control the culture and media so that “guys that have a secular viewpoint cannot survive.” Said Barton, “If the press lacks moral discrimination, it’s because we haven’t been pushing our people to chop that kind of news off.”

Barton’s work is not just an academic exercise. It is meant to have a political impact. For Barton, “documenting” the divine origins of his interpretations of the Constitution gives him and his political allies a potent weapon. Barton promotes a false reality in which anyone who opposes any element of his political agenda stands in opposition to both the Founding Fathers and to God. He believes that everything in our society – government, the judiciary, the economy, the family – should be governed according to the Bible, and he promotes a view of the Bible and Jesus that many Christians would not recognize. Opponents, even Christians, who disagree with Barton about tax policy or the powers of Congress are not only wrong, they are un-American and anti-religious, enemies of America and of God.

President Obama is a particularly frequent target of Barton’s. In January, one of his WallBuilders Live radio shows was titled “Why is Obama Trying to Remove God from the United States?” In March, right-wing “news” service WND quoted Barton accusing Obama (falsely of course) of being “engaged in a pattern of ‘willfully, deliberately’ repudiating America's Christian heritage.”

Those are the kind of accusations long favored by the Religious Right, and they are destructive. Claims that political opponents are evil and are actively trying to destroy Americans’ freedoms poison the public arena, make constructive civic discourse nearly impossible, and have the potential to incite acts of violence.

Elected officials who endorse Barton give his claims credibility they do not deserve. He in turn gives cover and a veneer of legitimacy to right-wing politicians interested in putting their notions of a nation created by and for Christians into public policy. Both Barton and his backers are undermining understanding of, and respect for, vital American values and constitutional principles like separation of church and state and equal treatment under the law.

And last night, Peter appeared on "The Last Word" with Lawrence O'Donnell to discuss Barton and his influence:

Right Wing Round-Up

  • PFAW: Glenn Beck Leaves Fox to Spend More Time with his Chalkboard.
  • Truth Wins Out: TWO Calls On The Republican Party to Denounce The American Family Association After Racist Rant By AFA Radio Host Bryan Fischer.
  • Towleroad: Judge Vaughn Walker Says He is Gay for First Time Publicly, Says Judges Should Never Recuse Themselves Over Sexuality.
  • Lee Fang @ Think Progress: Bristol Palin Responds: Legally Required Nonprofit Disclosure Part Of An Anti-Palin Conspiracy.
  • Andy Birkey @ Minnesota Independent: Herman Cain slams Ellison, says he supports Sharia law.
  • Zack Ford @ Wonk Room: VA Del. Bob Marshall’s Argument Against Same-Sex Adoption: Gay Couples Are ‘Disordered.’

Rand Paul To Address Ralph Reed's Religious Right Conference

Newly elected Kentucky Senator Rand Paul is set to address the Faith & Freedom Conference and Strategy Briefing in June, the hallmark event of Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition. Sen. Paul and his father, Texas Congressman Ron Paul, both appear to be testing the waters for a presidential bid. The younger Paul recently address the Iowa Republican Party’s “Night of the Rising Stars” and the Iowa Campaign for Freedom; he also told The Hill that he feels ready to run for president even though he has only held elected office since January.

Paul has also helped serve as a bridge between the Tea Party and the Religious Right, and conservatives were quick to defend him after he said he publicly opposed the Civil Rights Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. In 2009 Paul headlined an event for the Constitution Party, which wants to establish “biblical law,” and his far-right positions have helped him win endorsements from prominent Religious Right figures like James Dobson and Beverly LaHaye.

During his Iowa speech, he said that politicians should refuse to compromise on the issue of abortion, connecting it to compromises on slavery laws prior to the Civil War. Earlier this year, he tried to connect his opposition to abortion rights to his battle against low flush toilets.

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, who is forming a presidential exploratory committee, is also slated to speak at the conference. The group’s Iowa convention hosted likely candidates such as Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty, Herman Cain, and Buddy Roemer.

Right Wing Round-Up

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Rep. Michele Bachmann will be attending a fundraiser hosted by Sheriff Joe Arpaio for the Arizona Republican Party this weekend.
  • Bachmann will also "deliver a special message to the attendees at The Awakening 2011" ... whatever that means.
  • I really am getting tired of hearing the phrase "American Exceptionalism."
  • Janet Porter's "Heartbeat Bill" made it out of committee by one vote.
  • The Oklahoma Family Policy Council is shutting down, mainly because it lost grants it had been receiving to teach abstinence education.
  • Finally, Ken Hutcherson warns that a DOMA cobra wants trick you into trusting it so that it can bite and kill you ... or something.  I have no idea what he is talking about:

Right-Wing Activist Frets Over Gay Member Of The California Republican Leadership

After an openly gay Republican, Greg Gandrud, was elected to the board of directors of the California Republican Party at their convention, anti-gay organizations were obviously displeased. Similar to the debate over GOProud’s inclusion in the Conservative Political Action Conference, when right-wing groups blasted GOProud because it represents gay and lesbian conservatives, the head of the California Republican Assembly has taken issue with Gandrud’s sexual orientation. Celeste Greig of the California Republican Assembly said that Gandrud shouldn’t “bring his personal lifestyle” to the GOP.

The California Republican Assembly represents the state’s hard-right activists that Ronald Reagan called “the conscience of the Republican Party.” The group wants government guided by “moral law as expressed by the Judeo-Christian ethic and contained in the Holy Scriptures of these historic faiths” and said the “government is duty bound” to oppose marriage equality.

Greig told the American Family Association’s OneNewsNow:

The California Republican Party has elected its first openly homosexual board member. One incumbent is hopeful the action will not further enforce a "gay" agenda on citizens of The Golden State.



Celeste Greig, president of the volunteer California Republican Assembly, says many Republicans did not know of Gandrud's sexual orientation until recently. But she adds that her conservative group will stand its ground, both fiscally and socially.

"I hope that he doesn't bring his personal lifestyle within the party," says Greig. "Of course everyone is welcome to be members, to be productive. If they try to bring up more of their issues and promote more of their lifestyle, I'm sure that's not going to go well at all with members of the California Republican Assembly and with me."

Idaho GOP Hosts Anti-Muslim Activist

In yet another example of the deepening anti-Muslim sentiment in the GOP, the keynote speaker for a recent Idaho Republican Party fundraiser was a noted anti-Muslim activist from neighboring Washington. Pastor Shahram Hadian said he converted to Christianity during his childhood and now claims to be an expert on Islam. He unsuccessfully ran as a Republican candidate for state legislature last November and also targeted customers of a café whose employees delivered coffee wearing bikinis by taking their photos and posting their names online.

Hadian has addressed local Republican groups and a chapter of the staunchly anti-Muslim group ACT! for America on “how Islam is a political ideology focused on establishing oppressive Islamic law (Shar’ia) in every country, including America.” Hadian claims that “Shar’ia law has already infiltrated some of our local, state, and federal governmental laws and policies here in the U.S.” because of “political correctness and liberal ideology that is sympathetic to Shar’ia law.”

Leading politicians including Governor Butch Otter, US Senator Mike Crapo and freshmen congressman Raul Labrador were also present at the gathering. The Coeur d'Alene Press reports:

Close to 450 guests attended the Lincoln Day Dinner on Saturday night at The Coeur d'Alene Resort convention center. Hosted by the Kootenai County Republican Central Committee, the event brought together many of the state's brightest political stars, including Idaho GOP Chair Norm Semanko, U.S. Rep. Raul Labrador, U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo and Idaho Gov. Butch Otter.



According to Hadian, Islam is not a religion of peace. A large number of Muslims, led by groups like the Muslim Brotherhood, are bent on world domination, he said.

"In Islam, peace is achieved when a country becomes predominately Muslim," Hadian said. "Islam is not just a religion. Islam is a constitution. It is a political ideology."

He spoke of sharia law and jihad, and claimed some Islamic groups are actually fronts for the Muslim Brotherhood.

If Muslims are allowed to impose their rules, "Sharia law will not be subservient. It will be parallel," Hadian told the audience. "Please stop being politically correct."

The pastor implored his listeners to make immigration a national security issue. But, he said, his message is not about hating Muslims.

"I appreciate the honesty," said Marissa Mendive of Coeur d'Alene. "I think America needs to stop being so tolerant, because we're heading downhill fast. And I appreciate the patriotism here."

James Hoialmen of Post Falls said he found the evening's topics interesting.

"I think (Hadian) had a lot of good points. I also look at it as, 'In God We Trust' - it's stamped right on our bills. Our nation is founded on God. I'm a true, strong Christian, and definitely always stand with Christ."

Arkansas GOP Campaigns Against "Pro-Abortion Jewish Lawyer"

RWW reported in November on an internal Republican feud in Texas where the Religious Right unsuccessfully tried to push out the Speaker of the House, who is Jewish, in favor of a challenger who was a “True Christian.”

Now, Republicans in Arkansas are using a similar tactic against Democrat Jerry Repham in the race to fill a vacancy in the state legislature. The blog Blue Arkansas found a campaign email from Chuck Chatham, a committeeman of the local Republican Party, which contrasts Republican candidate Bruce Cozart with Repham, who Chatham calls a “pro-abortion Jewish lawyer.” He goes on to say that “this is a very important race to anyone who values Christian principles.”

Tuesday [March 8th is a special election to fill the vacant state legislature seat that was vacated by Keith Krass’s death last year. The election is between Bruce Cozart (R) a pro-life, Christian who has served a number of years on the Lake Hamilton school board and Jerry Rephan (D). Jerry is a pro-abortion Jewish lawyer who specializes in “environmental law” which means his primary clients as such were the Sierra Club and PETA, among others.

Bruce Cozart is pro-second amendment rights and has been an active member of the First Assembly of God church for many years. He has been a local contractor and construction worker for the last 35+ years here in Garland County. We need a contractor/dozer driver instead of another liberal lawyer in the Arkansas state legislature. Please go and vote!! This is a very important race to anyone who values Christian principles.

The 24th district includes most of the area south of highway 27O and west of Central avenue. It extends to the lake near 270 and on both sides of highway 70 west of the lake to near Lake Hamilton school. Your voters card will show if you are located in the 24th district, but if Keith Krass was on your ballot in November, you are in that district. If you don’t live in the district, please encourage your friends that do to go vote for Bruce, just as I am doing for you.

Thanks

Chuck Chatham

The special election will take place on March 8th.

Reed: It Is Unfair For Conservatives To Be "Judged On Their Past"

Tonight, the Iowa affiliate of Ralph Reed's Faith and Freedom Coalition is hosting it's "Spring Kick-off Event" featuring Five potential presidential candidates - Herman Cain, Buddy Roemer, Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty and Newt Gingrich.

And Reed wants it known that social conservatives have no intention of riding in the "back of the bus":

The Iowa political season is set to kick off with Monday’s Faith and Freedom Coalition forum featuring a slew of potential 2012 hopefuls — an event that group’s national chairman says will show that social issues “shouldn’t ride in the back of the bus” in the Republican primaries.

“This is a reminder that in spite of what the polls say nationally about the most important issues, there are literally tens of millions of grassroots activists within the Republican Party who will play an exaggerated role in the nominating process,” coalition leader Ralph Reed Jr. told POLITICO.

He added that those activists “want to have a nominee who thinks that social [issues] shouldn’t ride in the back of the bus. They want to see... a leader in the party and in the country who can lead on more than one front at the same time.”

Given that Religious Right activist expect to be front and center, you would expect that would be bad news for Gingrich who, with his checkered past, might have some trouble convincing these "family values" activists that he is worthy of their support ... but Reed insists that that is not the case at all:

“I just reject the argument that ... Newt's past would be a liability,” said Ralph Reed, the former Christian Coalition chief. “I think as long as he’s prepared to confront those challenges and he can do so in an authentic way, people’s (inclination) will be to be forgiving. Who wants to be judged on their past? Everybody has had issues.”

Gee, Reed doesn't think that Religious Right leaders ought to be "judged on their past"?  I wonder why that would be?

Right-Wing Activists Malign Goodwin Liu Even As Conservative Legal Minds Support His Confirmation

Legal scholar Goodwin Liu, President Obama’s nominee for the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, is receiving a second hearing at the Senate Judiciary Committee today. Liu, who is an Associate Dean and Professor of Law at the Berkeley School of Law and a renowned legal scholar, has unsurprisingly found himself to be a top target of right-wing activists.

Ed Whalen of the Nation Review accuses Liu of “trying to fool senators and get himself appointed to the Ninth Circuit, where he would (among countless opportunities for mischief)” overrule California’s Proposition 8. In addition, a coalition of right-wing groups including the Judicial Crisis Network, Family Research Council, Concerned Women for America, Liberty Counsel, American Values, the Center for Military Readiness, the Media Research Center, the Traditional Values Coalition, Americans for Limited Government, and Citizens United have signed on to a memo condemning Liu for representing the “extreme liberal agenda of judicial activism.”

But Richard Painter, the Associate Counsel to the President during the Bush Administration, points out that while many ideological right-wing activists oppose Liu, prominent conservative legal minds like John Yoo, Ken Starr, and Clint Bolick endorse his confirmation and corroborate Liu’s qualifications. “The attacks are rife with extravagant and tendentious readings of Liu’s record,” Painter writes, “and they are based on selective quotations of Liu's writings that even then don’t prove the point”:

Liu's opponents have sought to demonize him as a "radical," "extremist," and worse. National Review Online's Ed Whelan has led the charge with a "one-stop repository" of attacks on Liu. However, for anyone who has actually read Liu's writings or watched his testimony, it's clear that the attacks--filled with polemic, caricature, and hyperbole--reveal very little about this exceptionally qualified, measured, and mainstream nominee.



Far from being radical, Liu's view probably comports with the intent of the framers who bequeathed the Constitution to their descendants with the intent that it be a useful document. Few if any of our ancestors would have intended that we run our businesses, farm our land, educate our children, or live our lives exactly the way they did, even if they did intend that the Constitution give us principles of self-government that would last for generations. Liu's perspective may be more realistic than that of some of his opponents; his view is certainly not radical.



In sum, Liu is eminently qualified. He has support from prominent conservatives. He would fill a judicial emergency vacancy, and he would add important diversity to the bench. He is pragmatic and open-minded, not dogmatic or ideological, as his support for school vouchers shows.

Many, though by no means all, of his scholarly views do not align with conservative ideology or with the policy positions of many elected officials in the Republican Party. (This might not have been the case thirty years ago, but many moderates have since left the Republican Party.) Nevertheless, his views are part of the American legal mainstream. The independence, rigor, and fair-mindedness of his writings support a confident prediction that he will be a dutiful and impartial judge.

Arizona Weighs Even More Extreme Anti-Immigrant Bills

It looks like Arizona’s draconian racial profiling law was only the beginning. Republicans in the State Senate Appropriations Committee just approved a flagrantly unconstitutional bill that would eliminate citizenship by birthright, a right protected by the Constitution’s 14th Amendment.

As recently as 1982 in Plyler v. Doe, the Supreme Court ruled that undocumented immigrants are protected by the 14th Amendment, which guarantees birthright citizenship. The debate over the citizenship bill may even show signs of splintering inside the Republican Party, with one leading anti-immigrant State Senator accusing the state’s Chamber of Commerce of supporting “‘open borders’ because you like cheap labor.”

In addition to the legislation that would directly challenge the 14th Amendment, the committee also passed a bill that would force public schools to report to law enforcement officials on children’s parents if they’re undocumented, make it a crime for undocumented immigrants to drive in the state, and ban undocumented immigrants from attending state colleges and universities.

“If we’re going to stop this invasion - and it is an invasion – you’re going to have to stop rewarding people for breaking those laws,” said State Senate President Russell Pearce, a champion of the two bills and the architect of SB 1070.

Now, the bills move to the full State Senate.

Arizona Weighs Even More Extreme Anti-Immigrant Bills

It looks like Arizona’s draconian racial profiling law was only the beginning. Republicans in the State Senate Appropriations Committee just approved a flagrantly unconstitutional bill that would eliminate citizenship by birthright, a right protected by the Constitution’s 14th Amendment.

As recently as 1982 in Plyler v. Doe, the Supreme Court ruled that undocumented immigrants are protected by the 14th Amendment, which guarantees birthright citizenship. The debate over the citizenship bill may even show signs of splintering inside the Republican Party, with one leading anti-immigrant State Senator accusing the state’s Chamber of Commerce of supporting “‘open borders’ because you like cheap labor.”

In addition to the legislation that would directly challenge the 14th Amendment, the committee also passed a bill that would force public schools to report to law enforcement officials on children’s parents if they’re undocumented, make it a crime for undocumented immigrants to drive in the state, and ban undocumented immigrants from attending state colleges and universities.

“If we’re going to stop this invasion - and it is an invasion – you’re going to have to stop rewarding people for breaking those laws,” said State Senate President Russell Pearce, a champion of the two bills and the architect of SB 1070.

Now, the bills move to the full State Senate.

NOM Teams up with Steve King and Republican Presidential Candidates for Iowa Conference

Rep. Steve King (R-IA), who previously argued that marriage equality will lead to the downfall of civilization, is bringing together right-wing groups and leading Republicans for his Conservative Principles Conference on March 26th in the premier caucus state. Potential presidential candidates, including Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, Herman Cain, and John Bolton, will be joining the virulently anti-gay National Organization for Marriage for the conference. King says that Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), who believes schools should ban gay teachers, will keynote the event. Other participants include the National Rifle Association's Kayne Robinson, anti-labor National Right to Work Committee, anti-immigrant Numbers USA, Arizona SB-1070 architect Russell Pearce, Tea Party Patriots, and Betsy McCaughey, who concocted the “death panels” smear against the health care reform law.

Jason Hancock of The Iowa Independent reports:

The Conservative Principles Conference will be held March 26 at the Downtown Des Moines Marriott. The main topic with be “American exceptionalism.”

“Iowans will be granted access to some of the best, most respected conservative leaders in our nation at my conference,” King said in a statement.

Attendees include:

• Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum
• U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann
• Herman Cain
• Ambassador John R. Bolton
• Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds
• Matt Strawn, Republican Party of Iowa chairman
• State Sen. Russell Pearce of Arizona
• Betsy McCaughey (Defend Your Healthcare)
• Kayne Robinson (National Rifle Association)
• Jan Mickelson (WHO-AM)
• Dana Loesch (CNN contributor)
• Tea Party Patriots
• FairTax.org
• NumbersUSA
• National Organization for Marriage
• Strong America Now
• National Right to Work

Additional participants are expected and will be announced in the days to come.

NOM Teams up with Steve King and Republican Presidential Candidates for Iowa Conference

Rep. Steve King (R-IA), who previously argued that marriage equality will lead to the downfall of civilization, is bringing together right-wing groups and leading Republicans for his Conservative Principles Conference on March 26th in the premier caucus state. Potential presidential candidates, including Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, Herman Cain, and John Bolton, will be joining the virulently anti-gay National Organization for Marriage for the conference. King says that Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), who believes schools should ban gay teachers, will keynote the event. Other participants include the National Rifle Association's Kayne Robinson, anti-labor National Right to Work Committee, anti-immigrant Numbers USA, Arizona SB-1070 architect Russell Pearce, Tea Party Patriots, and Betsy McCaughey, who concocted the “death panels” smear against the health care reform law.

Jason Hancock of The Iowa Independent reports:

The Conservative Principles Conference will be held March 26 at the Downtown Des Moines Marriott. The main topic with be “American exceptionalism.”

“Iowans will be granted access to some of the best, most respected conservative leaders in our nation at my conference,” King said in a statement.

Attendees include:

• Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum
• U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann
• Herman Cain
• Ambassador John R. Bolton
• Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds
• Matt Strawn, Republican Party of Iowa chairman
• State Sen. Russell Pearce of Arizona
• Betsy McCaughey (Defend Your Healthcare)
• Kayne Robinson (National Rifle Association)
• Jan Mickelson (WHO-AM)
• Dana Loesch (CNN contributor)
• Tea Party Patriots
• FairTax.org
• NumbersUSA
• National Organization for Marriage
• Strong America Now
• National Right to Work

Additional participants are expected and will be announced in the days to come.

CPAC Immigration Panel: Readying the Fight to Save the GOP and White America

If there is one message to take away from CPAC’s panel on immigration, it’s that White America is in serious jeopardy and may soon succumb to immigration, multiculturalism, and socialism. The panel “Will Immigration Kill the GOP?” featured former congressmen Tom Tancredo (R-CO) and Virgil Goode (R-VA), Bay Buchanan of Team America PAC, and special guest Rep. Lou Barletta (R-PA). The group Youth for Western Civilization sponsored the panel, and its head Kevin DeAnna was also a panelist. Youth for Western Civilization is a far-right group that regularly criticizes affinity groups on college campuses, especially those that represent black, Hispanic, LGBT, Native American, and Muslim students.

Tancredo, a star among anti-immigrant activists, started the event by claiming that he wasn’t bigoted against Latinos and that the majority of Hispanic Americans support him and favor Arizona’s draconian SB-1070 law. “I have a lot of people who have Hispanic last names who support me,” Tancredo told the jam-packed room, “I speak for most Americans.” The former congressman, who in 2010 received just 37% of the vote in his bid for governor of Colorado, claimed that the GOP should embrace his nativist politics because immigration is the “ultimate economic issue,” and even claimed that Hispanics supported him over his Democratic opponent, Governor John Hickenlooper.

Responding to a questioner who believed that Democrats would drop their support of immigration reform if immigrants were stripped of their right to vote, Tancredo said that even immigrants without voting rights still pose a grave danger to the country.

“No more of this multiculturalism garbage,” Tancredo said, adding that “the cult of multiculturalism has captured the world” and is “the dagger in the heart” of civilization.

Not to be out done, Goode maintained that immigration in general “will not only kill the GOP but will kill the United States of America.” He went on to say that Democratic politicians support undocumented immigration only in order to introduce “socialized medicine” and gain future voters. The Virginia firebrand maintained that the majority of Americans favor his fervently anti-immigrant views, and wanted every state to emulate Arizona’s SB-1070. He asked, “Who could really be against doing away with birthright citizenship?”

Both Tancredo and Goode agreed that U.S. citizens are now being treated unfairly as undocumented immigrants reap all the benefits of American society.

Tancredo claimed that undocumented immigrants “get better health care in detention centers than some of my constituents,” and Goode argued that “today, being a citizen means you’re second class.”

Later, Bay Buchanan said that Tancredo and his dogmatic Nativism represent a model increasingly followed by Republican politicians, including Sen. John McCain, once an advocate of reform, who she said became a “Tancredo disciple when he ran for reelection.” Buchanan also pointed to Arizona Governor Jan Brewer’s reelection to demonstrate that anti-immigrant politics can lead to Republican success at the polls, and said that every state should have a governor like Brewer.

DeAnna of Youth for Western Civilization gave a much darker outlook on the success of the Republican Party, and the country as a whole. He said that the “system is stacked against” the anti-immigrant movement, maintaining that an alliance of corporate and Republican elites is preventing the party from moving farther to the right on the issue of immigration. He warned of the rising tide of multiculturalism, especially among young people. “The Left gets power from multiculturalism,” DeAnna said, and “when you lose the culture you lose the policy too.”

He also argued that the GOP is “dead” in California because of the rising population of Latinos, and said that the Democratic Party and their allies in organized labor want further immigration to strengthen their electoral clout.

Rep. Lou Barletta was the final speaker before questions, and he discussed how he saved the city of Hazleton as mayor by cracking down on employers and landlords who do business with undocumented immigrants. “I stood up for the rule of law,” Barletta said, even though his anti-immigrant ordinance was declared unconstitutional. The congressman has a long history of partnering with Nativist groups, and he asked the audience to support him as he pledged to take his case to the Supreme Court.

But while many panelists like Tancredo and Buchanan began their speeches by saying that they were absolutely not bigoted or racist in any way, participants at the event asked many racially-tinged questions.

A questioner asked Goode how to “control immigration from the Islamic and Arab world,” and said that unless that happens there could be “more Keith Ellisons.” Ellison is a Democratic congressman from Minnesota who converted to Islam as an adult, and is not an immigrant, but Goode did write a letter to his constituents saying, “The Muslim Representative from Minnesota was elected by the voters of that district and if American citizens don't wake up and adopt the Virgil Goode position on immigration, there will likely be many more Muslims elected to office and demanding the use of the Koran.”

Another questioner discussed how astounded he was that “in the northeast, majority-Caucasian communities” tend to back “support ‘amnesty,’” or at least pro-reform politicians. He asked the panelists how he could turn more “Caucasian communities” against amnesty, and Buchanan assured him that even voters in Massachusetts oppose reform efforts like the DREAM Act.

One member of the audience wondered if Congress could “defund the National Council of La Raza,” a Latino civil rights group, which he said was “just like the Ku Klux Klan.” Goode appeared to agree, and demanded that Congress end the organization’s funding. Asking if “it’s possible that [American] society devolves into South Africa,” one questioner discussed the declining population rate of “European Americans” and floated the idea of ethnic groups living separately. While he directed the question towards Barletta, the congressman ignored the question.

Evidently, while the panel’s speakers see unrepentant Nativism and immigrant-bashing as the way for the GOP’s electoral success, it mainly appealed to the CPAC attendees who feared the demise of White America and the emergence of a more diverse population. All four panelists agreed that unless the Republican Party embraces their hard line anti-immigrant stance, the GOP will become inextricably weakened and the country will dissolve into multicultural dystopia.

Although the panelists all said that it wasn’t about race, it’s easy to see why many audience members thought it was.

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republican party Posts Archive

Brian Tashman, Wednesday 08/17/2011, 9:37am
Pamela Geller has a second column out today attacking Texas Gov. Rick Perry for his ties to the Aga Khan, the leader of the Ismaili sect of Shiite Islam, and to one of Geller’s favorite targets, Grover Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform. Anti-Muslim activists have long viewed Norquist as one of the principal architects of Muslim Brotherhood infiltration of the conservative movement and American society at large because of his work to make the political Right more inclusive of Muslim-Americans. Geller writes today in her WorldNetDaily column that she doesn’t “want to see a... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Monday 08/15/2011, 2:23pm
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Kyle Mantyla, Friday 08/12/2011, 11:17am
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Kyle Mantyla, Thursday 08/04/2011, 3:27pm
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Brian Tashman, Tuesday 08/02/2011, 12:33pm
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Miranda Blue, Wednesday 07/20/2011, 4:30pm
Cross-Posted on the People For blog Here at People For the American Way, we’ve spent the last several weeks marveling as Texas Gov. Rick Perry plans a blockbuster Christian prayer rally in Houston, gathering around him a remarkable collection of Religious Right extremists – from a pastor who claims that the Statue of Liberty is a “demonic idol” to a self-described “apostle” who blamed last year’s mysterious bird deaths in Arkansas on the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Perry claims the event is apolitical, but it is conveniently... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 07/19/2011, 3:22pm
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Kyle Mantyla, Thursday 07/14/2011, 3:52pm
Alice Patterson is in charge of "Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Oklahoma Church Mobilization" for Gov. Rick Perry's "The Response" prayer rally and is, not surprisingly, deeply involved in the New Apostolic Reformation movement where she focuses on "racial healing." Last year she released a book entitled "Bridging the Racial and Political Divide: How Godly Politics Can Transform a Nation" in which she explained how she had served as Field Director of the Texas Christian Coalition for years until she discovered the works of "apostles" and... MORE >