Arizona

AFA: Boehner Leading "War" Against "The Powers of Evil"

In a new fundraising letter asking for help to “restore our nation to its Christian roots,” the American Family Association asks its supporters to pray for House Speaker John Boehner, who AFA says is leading a war against the “powers of evil” – meaning pro-equality and pro-choice members of Congress.

After recounting the biblical story of Moses relying on the help of Aaron and Hur to keep his arms raised and help the Israelites defeat Amalek, the AFA letter says this:
 
We are at war with the powers of evil no less than Moses was. In the physical realm of politics, our leader is House Speaker Boehner.
 
Even as you read this letter, he is combating those in Congress who seek to destroy our families and the unborn. As he does so, we need to be holding him up in prayer!
 
It’s worth noting that the Amalekites that the AFA invokes for comparison to its political opponents were, according to scriptures, the most despicable and implacable enemies of Israel and God, so much so that God ordered that they all be slaughtered, including women, children, and animals.
 
The AFA letter also asks recipients to sign a postcard to Boehner, which reads:
 
Dear Mr. Speaker
 
I am thankful that God has chosen you to lead the 112th Congress, as you are a man of faith and integrity. I want you to know that I am praying for you. I am praying especially that you will guide your fellow Representatives to govern as they campaigned!
 
As you know, our country is engaged in a great culture war. The outcome of this conflict will determine whether or not America survives as a free and blessed nation.
 
I am counting on you to protect our families - especially the unborn - by following the Constitution and acting on Godly principles. Working together and trusting God, we can restore our nation to the greatness which He bestowed on it at its founding, and one [sic] again, make this an honorable and just nation for our posterity.
 
Speaker Boehner received some praise for his response to the recent shootings in Arizona. Will he now  repudiate AFA’s portrayal of his colleagues as “the powers of evil?”

Conservative Blogs Unleash More Animosity in Reaction to Obama’s Speech

After President Obama called for more civility and reconciliation in politics and asked Americans to remember the late Christina Taylor Green, saying, “I want our democracy to be as good as she imagined it,” right-wing blogs came out swinging and swiftly responded with their predictable enmity.

RedState’s Erick Erickson wrote that Obama was the one to atone for his ties to Bill Ayers, and also said that progressives were plotting Sarah Palin’s murder:

This is, after all, a man who got his political start in the home of a terrorist who’d dedicated a book to Robert F. Kennedy’s killer — a man who never repented but who Mr. Obama then gave grant money to.

Will the President live up to his own standard? Everyone can change. Everyone can repent. Let’s hope this President will.

But there is much that still must be done and much the left must still learn.



All week long, the left has said Jared Loughner was persuaded to try to kill Congresswoman Giffords because of right-wing hate. We know that was not true. But here is what else I am sure of.

Out there somewhere is someone who would love to kill Governor Palin. God forbid they do it. But you and I both know there is some crazy MSNBC watcher and Media Matters reader who even now is dreaming of doing so.

And should they try, we can be equally sure of something else. The left will be divided into two camps: (1) bitch deserved it and (2) not my fault.

It is unfortunate. I hope it never happens. But you and I both know the reality in which we live.

John Hayward of Human Events charged Obama and event organizers for putting on a political rally rather than a memorial service, and while Hayward said the President’s speech was “mostly excellent,” he then slammed him for being a “hard-core liberal” and for supporting Sheriff Dupnik’s earlier call for tolerance:

One of the most emotional moments came when President Obama departed from his script to announce that wounded Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords had opened her eyes… and he proceeded to work the line with hallelujah fervor, repeating it several times to juice up the crowd. There doesn’t seem to have been much effort to engineer an atmosphere of solemn dignity.



The most anticipated, and problematic, passage in the President’s speech was his call for a return to civility in politics. “What we can’t do is use this tragedy as one more occasion to turn on one another,” he declared. Sorry, Mr. President, but a vast segment of your supporters has already done that. Admonishing every part of the political spectrum to avoid “pointing fingers and assigning blame” is horribly disingenuous. Barack Obama is not a centrist wandering into a partisan squabble, and offering a hand of peace to both sides. He’s a hard-core liberal, and the hard Left has been doing all of the finger-pointing during this drama, beginning within minutes of the shooting.

Remember, this is the same President Obama who recently called the vicious partisan gasbag sheriff of Pima County, Clarence Dupnik, to congratulate him on a job well done. There is absolutely no evidence that Obama, or anyone from his Administration, told Dupnik to lay off his wacko theories about Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin inspiring Loughner to commit murder… theories he has loudly repeated in front of every television camera he can find.

Paul Mirengoff of Power Line was angry that despite numerous readings from the Bible from the President and other speakers, the service wasn’t 'Christian' or 'American' enough:

As for the "ugly," I'm afraid I must cite the opening "prayer" by Native American Carlos Gonzales. It was apparently was some sort of Yaqui Indian tribal thing, with lots of references to "the creator" but no mention of God. Several of the victims were, as I understand it, quite religious in that quaint Christian kind of way (none, to my knowledge, was a Yaqui). They (and their families) likely would have appreciated a prayer more closely aligned with their religious beliefs.

But it wasn't just Gonzales's prayer that was "ugly" under the circumstances. Before he ever got to the prayer, Gonzales provided us with a mini-auto biography and made several references to Mexico, the country from which (he informed us) his family came to Arizona in the mid 19th century. I'm not sure why Gonzales felt that Mexico needed to intrude into this service, but I have an idea.

In any event, the invocation could have used more God, less Mexico, and less Carlos Gonzales.

Conservative Blogs Unleash More Animosity in Reaction to Obama’s Speech

After President Obama called for more civility and reconciliation in politics and asked Americans to remember the late Christina Taylor Green, saying, “I want our democracy to be as good as she imagined it,” right-wing blogs came out swinging and swiftly responded with their predictable enmity.

RedState’s Erick Erickson wrote that Obama was the one to atone for his ties to Bill Ayers, and also said that progressives were plotting Sarah Palin’s murder:

This is, after all, a man who got his political start in the home of a terrorist who’d dedicated a book to Robert F. Kennedy’s killer — a man who never repented but who Mr. Obama then gave grant money to.

Will the President live up to his own standard? Everyone can change. Everyone can repent. Let’s hope this President will.

But there is much that still must be done and much the left must still learn.



All week long, the left has said Jared Loughner was persuaded to try to kill Congresswoman Giffords because of right-wing hate. We know that was not true. But here is what else I am sure of.

Out there somewhere is someone who would love to kill Governor Palin. God forbid they do it. But you and I both know there is some crazy MSNBC watcher and Media Matters reader who even now is dreaming of doing so.

And should they try, we can be equally sure of something else. The left will be divided into two camps: (1) bitch deserved it and (2) not my fault.

It is unfortunate. I hope it never happens. But you and I both know the reality in which we live.

John Hayward of Human Events charged Obama and event organizers for putting on a political rally rather than a memorial service, and while Hayward said the President’s speech was “mostly excellent,” he then slammed him for being a “hard-core liberal” and for supporting Sheriff Dupnik’s earlier call for tolerance:

One of the most emotional moments came when President Obama departed from his script to announce that wounded Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords had opened her eyes… and he proceeded to work the line with hallelujah fervor, repeating it several times to juice up the crowd. There doesn’t seem to have been much effort to engineer an atmosphere of solemn dignity.



The most anticipated, and problematic, passage in the President’s speech was his call for a return to civility in politics. “What we can’t do is use this tragedy as one more occasion to turn on one another,” he declared. Sorry, Mr. President, but a vast segment of your supporters has already done that. Admonishing every part of the political spectrum to avoid “pointing fingers and assigning blame” is horribly disingenuous. Barack Obama is not a centrist wandering into a partisan squabble, and offering a hand of peace to both sides. He’s a hard-core liberal, and the hard Left has been doing all of the finger-pointing during this drama, beginning within minutes of the shooting.

Remember, this is the same President Obama who recently called the vicious partisan gasbag sheriff of Pima County, Clarence Dupnik, to congratulate him on a job well done. There is absolutely no evidence that Obama, or anyone from his Administration, told Dupnik to lay off his wacko theories about Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin inspiring Loughner to commit murder… theories he has loudly repeated in front of every television camera he can find.

Paul Mirengoff of Power Line was angry that despite numerous readings from the Bible from the President and other speakers, the service wasn’t 'Christian' or 'American' enough:

As for the "ugly," I'm afraid I must cite the opening "prayer" by Native American Carlos Gonzales. It was apparently was some sort of Yaqui Indian tribal thing, with lots of references to "the creator" but no mention of God. Several of the victims were, as I understand it, quite religious in that quaint Christian kind of way (none, to my knowledge, was a Yaqui). They (and their families) likely would have appreciated a prayer more closely aligned with their religious beliefs.

But it wasn't just Gonzales's prayer that was "ugly" under the circumstances. Before he ever got to the prayer, Gonzales provided us with a mini-auto biography and made several references to Mexico, the country from which (he informed us) his family came to Arizona in the mid 19th century. I'm not sure why Gonzales felt that Mexico needed to intrude into this service, but I have an idea.

In any event, the invocation could have used more God, less Mexico, and less Carlos Gonzales.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • After the Tucson shooting, an Arizona Republican District Chairman opposed by the Tea Party resigned, saying, “I don’t want to take a bullet for anyone.”
  • North Carolina State Rep. Larry Brown wants to end government funding for treating people with HIV since they’re living “perverted lifestyles.”
  • An Atlanta pastor raises money to help one of the architects of Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” bill.

More Right-Wing Spin on Tucson Shootings; Malkin Sees Campaign to “Criminalize Conservativism”

While Sarah Palin tries to make herself out as the real victim of the shootings in Arizona, even going so far as to compare herself to Jewish victims of “blood libels,” the right-wing echo-chamber has been busy spinning the shootings in Tucson. After Tea Party Nation head Judson Phillips called Jared Lee Loughner “a liberal lunatic,” conservatives eagerly promoted his claims. NewsMax claimed that Loughner has links to “left-wing politics” since his favorite books include “‘The Communist Manifesto’ by Karl Marx, Adolf Hitler’s ‘Mein Kampf,’ and the fiction classic ‘One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest.’” The American Family Association’s news service declared the “AZ shooter a leftist, not tea party supporter,” quoting Larry Pratt of Gun Owners of America who “believes there is substantial evidence to show that suspect, Jared Lee Loughner, is an angry leftist who hates America and Christianity.” The RightNetwork’s Gateway Pundit maintained that Loughner is a “Left-Winger” because he “likes watching US flags burn & favorite book is ‘Communist Manifesto,’” and WorldNetDaily said Loughner may have been influenced by a “liberal group founded by Weatherman terrorist Bill Ayers and funded by President Obama.”

Rush Limbaugh even alleged that Loughner “has the full support of a major political party in this country. He's sitting there in jail; he knows what's going on. He knows that a Democrat [sic] Party -- the Democrat [sic] Party -- is attempting to find anybody but him to blame.”

But when the Right isn’t attempting to paint Loughner as a liberal, they try to demonize Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik. Right-wing writer Michelle Malkin today called Dupnik “The Worst Sheriff in America” and condemned his “vulture-like exploitation of the shooting rampage.” Dupnik, who has spoken out against the role of violence and hate mongering in politics, has found himself in the crosshairs of conservative pundits and politicians. Now, Malkin seeks to blame the Sheriff for the shooting and accuses him of seeking publicity for himself and attempting to “criminalize conservatism”:

Dupnik's mouth has done more to stoke self-inflicted ire against elected government clowns than anything the right could muster against him. Had the hyper-partisan Democrat been more in tune with his job than the media airwaves, the murderous, maniacal gunman might have been stopped.

As Dupnik himself has now admitted, Loughner leveled death threats against others that were investigated by law enforcement -- and then apparently shrugged off. Locals note that Loughner's mother worked for the county and may have had some pull. Pima County College campus police reported five serious confrontations with the mentally unstable young man before he was kicked out of the school, which he decried as an unconstitutional "torture facility." Classmates said they feared for their lives. His friends say he was a pothead, a 9/11 Truther and a UFO conspiracist so kooky that even flying-objects adherents spurned him.

Despite zero evidence that Rush Limbaugh, cable news, the tea party movement or immigration enforcement activists had anything to do with Loughner's warped attack, shameless Sheriff Dupnik shows no signs of shutting up.

The worst sheriff in America is walking in the footsteps of another infamous law enforcement official who put fame, ambition and ideology above public safety: disgraced Montgomery County (Md.) Police Chief Charles Moose, the publicity-hungry Keystone Cop who grossly bungled the Beltway sniper attacks in 2002.

...

Dupnik is now following the same ill-gotten path. But decent Americans understand that he and his civilian counterparts have traveled a smear too far. Despite desperate attempts by the progressive left to pin the massacre on the "harsh tone" of its political opponents, a vast majority of Americans reject the cynical campaign to criminalize conservatism, suppress political free speech and capitalize on violent crime for electoral gain.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • TPM: How Glenn Beck And Fox News Successfully Painted AZ Shooter As Hitler, Marx Devotee
  • Alan Colmes: Pawlenty On Palin’s “Crosshairs”: “I Wouldn’t Have Done It.”
  • The Plum Line: Paul Begala to right wing: Why so defensive about Arizona shooting?
  • Steve Benen: A Trip Down Memory Lane With Newt Gingrich.
  • Joe.My.God: Bishop Robert Evans: Satan Is Trying To Bring Gay Marriage To Rhode Island.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • The Supreme Court will rule soon on Bishop Harry Jackson’s petition to hear a case on the status of DC’s marriage equality law.
  • Jim Garlow and California Republicans plan to rally against the ruling that the cross at the Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial is unconstitutional.
  • Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver and “historian” David Barton are teaming up for “South Carolina Awake!”
  • Anti-Islam activist Debbie Schlussel can’t call herself “Director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations” anymore.
  • Speaking of anti-Islam activists, Pamela Geller wants New Yorkers to “Say Yes to Wal-Mart, No to the Mega Mosque.”

Schlafly: Overturn Birthright Citizenship Just Like We Overturned Dred Scott

Opponents of birthright citizenship have mobilized in Congress and in fourteen state legislatures to pass legislation that would reinterpret the 14th Amendment to deny birthright citizenship. At a forum of state legislators who support scrapping birthright citizenship, Republican State Rep. Daniel B. Verdi of South Carolina compared illegal immigration to “the malady of slavery” and Republican State Rep. Daryl Metcalfe said such legislation would help “bring an end to the illegal alien invasion.”

Eagle Forum’s Phyllis Schlafly praised their efforts in a column today, promoting the plans by Republican politicians to do-away with birthright citizenship through legislation rather than an amendment to the constitution even though the Supreme Court ruled that even the children of illegal immigrants have constitutional protections in United States v. Wong Kim Ark (1898), a ruling confirmed in Plyler v. Doe (1982).

According to constitutional scholar James Ho, “the text of the Citizenship Clause plainly guarantees birthright citizenship to the U.S.-born children of all persons subject to U.S sovereign authority and laws” and “the clause thus covers the vast majority of lawful and unlawful aliens.”

Schlafly, however, insists that the longstanding interpretation of the 14th’s Amendment’s guarantee of birthright citizenship should be tossed out just as Dred Scott, the infamous case which declared that African Americans could not be citizens and as result have no rights under the constitution, was reversed by the 14th Amendment:

It's long overdue for Congress to stop the racket of bringing pregnant women into this country to give birth, receive free medical care and then call their babies U.S. citizens entitled to all American rights and privileges plus generous handouts. Between 300,000 and 400,000 babies are born to illegal aliens in the United States every year, at least 10 percent of all births.



The amnesty crowd tries to tell us that the 14th Amendment makes automatic citizens out of "all persons" born in the United States, but they conveniently ignore the rest of the sentence. It's not enough to be "born" in the U.S. -- you can claim citizenship only if you are "subject to the jurisdiction thereof."

The 14th Amendment, ratified in 1868, overruled the Dred Scott decision wherein the U.S. Supreme Court declared that African-Americans could not be citizens. Those who support court-made law should forever be reminded of Abraham Lincoln's warning that if we accept the supremacy of judges, "the people will have ceased to be their own rulers, having to that extent practically resigned their government into the hands of that eminent tribunal."



Terminating the anchor-baby racket is very popular with the American people. A Rasmussen poll reports that 58 percent oppose it, while only 33 percent favor it.

Now that state legislatures are flexing their muscles, representatives from 14 states unveiled state legislation to clarify who is and who isn't a citizen in those states. The Arizona bill establishes that state law parallels the definition of citizenship in the 14th Amendment, and that a U.S. citizen is, "for the purposes of this statute, a person who owes no allegiance to any foreign sovereignty."

The Arizona bill, introduced by Sen. Russell Pearce and Rep. John Kavanagh, would create two kinds of state birth certificates. One would be for children of citizens and the other for children of illegal aliens.

Right-Wing’s Dupnik Pile-On Continues

After calling for politicians and political commentators to tone down violent and hateful political rhetoric, Sheriff Clarence Dupnik is now experiencing himself the force of right-wing hostility and rancor. Dupnik never suggested that the deeply disturbed shooter was directly influenced by political debate, but called into question the use of vicious rhetoric and violent imagery that has become all too commonplace in political discourse today. “The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country,” Dupnik said, “is getting to be outrageous.” After facing a preliminary assault yesterday, now Dupnik is facing an all-out barrage from the Right.

Drudge Report is claiming that Dupnik blamed Rush Limbaugh for the attack:

Actually, Dupnik asserted that Limbaugh “attacks people, angers them against government, angers them against elected officials,” but never blamed Limbaugh. Now Limbaugh is responding, saying, “This sheriff out there, Sheriff Dupnik, you know, this guy, he's gotta be very careful. If I were him I wouldn't say another word about this….But the sheriff is out saying that everybody but the kid's responsible for this.” Limbaugh went on to say that “He has taken the occasion of this, a law enforcement officer, to politicize it, to advance his own political agenda, which he claims he doesn't even have.” Limbaugh then implied that the Sheriff may be botching the investigation of the case in order to cover his own failure to stop the shooting:

The shooter did what he did in your community! You're in charge of keeping that community safe, Sheriff. What did you do? Was this the first time you heard about the shooter or did you have knowledge of the shooter before this? I would wager that the sheriff knew of this shooter long before this event, but the sheriff has gone ahead now with these comments, and he's given... He has given the defense a case. My guess is the sheriff wouldn't mind president shooter's acquitted. After all, it's not the shooter's fault! If you carry the sheriff's logic all the way out.

David Limbaugh, Rush’s brother and a conservative commentator, slammed Dupnik for not having “a scintilla of proof to support his slander,” Allahpundit of the popular right-wing blog HotAir called Dupnik “a ludicrous political hack and a disgrace to his office,” and Michelle Malkin dismissed him as a “pro-illegal alien amnesty sheriff.” The Heritage Foundation accused the Sheriff of using “this tragedy for political gain” and the Media Research Center was riled that Tom Brokaw “praised Sheriff Dupnik of Pima County, Ariz. for condemning political vitriol.”

Of course, any time Rush Limbaugh is on the defensive a Republican congressman must get involved. Rep. Jack Kingston (R-GA) told the Associated Press that Dupnik is an “irresponsible” sheriff: “I don’t see any link whatsoever at this point between vitriolic discourse and someone plowing down his fellow citizens. I think frankly it's irresponsible of the sheriff to say that.” Like Limbaugh, Rep. Kingston tried to put the onus on the sheriff: “If the local jurisdiction knew about this guy, there's a question to me of this sheriff who's so quick to condemn vitriolic political discourse ... how come he missed it?”

If you would like to show your support for Sheriff Dupnik, please take a moment to sign a letter of solidarity with him against the increasing smears he is facing from the Right.

Right Wing Round-Up

Right-Wing Moves to Attack Sheriff Dupnik

Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik’s impassioned plea for greater civility and tolerance in politics following the shooting in Arizona has spurred a backlash among far-right politicians and commentators whose campaigns and careers are centered on divisive and indignant rhetoric. Dupnik, who singled out no political party or ideology, condemned the extreme language that could provoke an unhinged individual into violence: “When you look at unbalanced people, how they respond to the vitriol that comes out of certain mouths about tearing down the government. The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous.” He went on to say that “people tend to poo-poo this business about all the vitriol that we hear inflaming the American people by people who make a living off doing that. That may be free speech, but it’s not without consequences.”

Now, Dupnik is now himself becoming the target of right-wing fear-mongering. Jon Kyl, one of Arizona’s Republican Senators, denounced Dupnik, saying that his comments shouldn’t have “had any part in a law enforcement briefing” and represented mere “speculation.” Kyl kicked off a campaign to dismiss and smear the Arizona Sheriff. Arizona conservative activist Pamela Gorman, who won national attention over her campaign ad featuring her shooting four different fire arms to “drive the left nuts,” said that Dupnik was only elected to his position because of the county’s Democratic leanings. Judson Phillips of Tea Party Nation labeled Dupnik a “leftist sheriff” who is using the attack to “silence” conservative activists and commentators. “"[T]he aftermath of today's shooting is the official obituary for political civility in this country,” Philips continued, “The left has simply gone too far. There can be no civil discourse with people as crazy as those on the left are.”

Local right-wing talk radio host Jon Justice, who has a long history of anti-immigrant rhetoric, accused Dupnik of making “reckless and dangerous statements” and said that he should apologize and resign over his “horrible comments.” Megyn Kelly of Fox News charged Dupnik with “putting a political spin” on the case and contributing to the same heated discourse he challenged.

The conservative blogosphere has also ratcheted up the anger against Dupnik. Breitbart praised Kelly for holding “Sheriff Dupnik Accountable for Politicizing Tucson Shooting” and the RightNetwork’s blog attacked the “dishonorable” Sheriff Dupnik and dismissed him as a “leftist hero.” Moe Lane on a front page post for the popular conservative blog RedState slammed Dupnik for purportedly peddling “conspiracy theory nonsense” and predicted that he “will lose his next election.”

Evidently, there are still some commentators out there who would rather condemn those who point out hatred and bigotry than condemn hatred and bigotry.

If you would like to show your support for Sheriff Dupnik, please take a moment to sign a letter of solidarity with him against the increasing smears he is facing from the Right.

WND: AZ Shooter Attended School "Founded by Bill Ayers and Funded by President Obama"

As the nation attempts to deal with the tragic events of this weekend in Arizona in which Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and several others were shot and several people lost their lives, everyone is trying to figure out what drove Jared Lee Loughner to carry out such an attack.

While Loughner apparently had serious mental problems, you can always leave it up to WorldNetDaily to discover the true cause - Bill Ayers and President Obama

Jared Lee Loughner, the suspected gunman in Saturday's Arizona shooting, attended a high school that is part of a network in which teachers are trained and provided resources by a liberal group founded by Weatherman terrorist Bill Ayers and funded by President Obama, WND has learned.

The group, Small Schools Workshop, has been led by a former top communist activist who is an associate of Ayers.

Obama provided the group with funds in the 1990s when he worked at an education reform group alongside Ayers.

Religious Right Tells GOP Not To Ignore Social Issues

Back around the election, a group of Religious Right leaders sent a letter to top Republicans urging them to cut taxes, shrink the government, build up the military and restore "traditional moral values."

Apparently concerned that the "restoring traditional moral issues" part might get left out of the mix, many of those same leader have signed on to a new letter to these same top Republicans warning them not to ignore social issues like abortion and marriage:

"When considering America's fiscal and national defense policies, which are critically important, we believe that social issues, including, but not limited to, the sanctity of human life and the preservation of marriage as the union of one man and one woman, are indispensable," the Dec. 20 letter said.

The signers said they believe focusing on all three issues is "essential for America and our future."

"A stool with only one or two legs is unstable," they said. "All three legs are necessary. We believe it is critically important that the leadership, and those appointed or elected to lead, embrace all three legs of the stool. A broad-based and sustainable movement requires all three core values."

...

The letter went to Boehner and Cantor, as well as Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl of Arizona.

In addition to [Richard] Land, other signers were Mathew Staver, chairman of Liberty Counsel; Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council; Gary Bauer, president of American Values; Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference; Harry Jackson, chairman of the High Impact Leadership Coalition, and Jim Garlow, chairman of Renewing American Leadership.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • American Independent: Many states look to Arizona’s SB 1070 as a model for new immigration legislation.
  • TPM: Fair & Balanced? Fox News’ Big Year.

David Barton's Utter Disregard for Fact and Accuracy

I've already pointed out how ridiculous David Barton's election analysis has been, but since he keeps spewing his nonsense, I guess I'll just have to keep point it out.

Here is Barton's latest:

New findings show that the 2010 midterm elections saw the highest Christian voter turnout ever.

"We had a very high Christian voter turnout two years ago, but they did not bring their values with them," explains David Barton, founder and president of WallBuilders, which is an organization that supports the moral, religious and constitutional foundation on which America was built.

He says only one percent of voters considered marriage to be an issue in 2008, but that statistic reached 53 percent this year. Moreover, only six percent of voters thought abortion was an issue in 2009, but that margin jumped to 30 percent by last month's elections.

"You [clearly] have Christians showing up. Not only did they show up this time, they actually brought their values with them," Barton notes. "And not only did they bring their values, they voted their values." 

Really?  In 2008, anti-gay marriage amendments passed in California, Arizona, and Florida ... but Barton wants us to believe that only "one percent of voters considered marriage to be an issue"?

Please. 

What post-election surveys show is that only one percent thought marriage was the most important issue, which is obviously a completely different finding.

But then Barton goes on to comapre that one percent figure to exit polls from 2010 showing that 53% of respondents answered "No" to the question "Should Same-Sex Marriages Be Legally Recognized?" as if that was an accurate comparison.

Similarly, only nine percent considered abortion to be the most important issue in 2008 but Barton compares that to a poll showing that "thirty percent of voters said that abortion 'affected' their vote," despite the fact that considering something "the most important issue" and stating that it to "affected" one's vote are completely different things.

One percent thought marriage was the most important issue in 2008 while nine percent thought abortion was the most important issue - but Barton baselessly compares those figures to completely unrelated figures from 2010 in an effort to make it look like the electorate suddenly cares primarily about his Religious Right agend.

House GOP Picks Ethically-Challenged Freshmen for Judiciary Committee

The House Republican Leadership recently announced that incoming Pennsylvania Congressman Tom Marino and Arkansas Congressman Tim Griffin have been assigned seats on Rep. Lamar Smith’s Judiciary Committee. Marino and Griffin, who were profiled in Right Wing Watch’s The Ten Scariest Republicans Heading to Congress, are peculiar picks for a committee which has “jurisdiction over matters relating to the administration of justice in federal courts, administrative bodies, and law enforcement agencies” since both Republicans were dogged by corruption and ethics scandals prior to their successful bids for Congress.

Marino resigned from his position as a US Attorney in the wake of a brewing scandal over his ties to resort owner and convicted felon Louis DeNaples. He described DeNaples as his “close friend” and provided a reference for DeNaples when he attempted to win state approval to have slot machines at his resort.

But when Marino’s own office opened an investigation into DeNaples over his ties to organized crime, Marino's assistants discovered the reference and the Department of Justice (DOJ) transferred the case to the US Attorney of Binghamton, NY. The DOJ later launched an investigation of Marino “for allegedly violating several department guidelines” over the “reference letter he wrote to help Louis DeNaples get a casino license,” but the investigation ended once Marino resigned.

Responding to criticism about his ties to DeNaples, Marino declared during an interview that he has evidence the DOJ gave him permission to serve as a reference. However, Boryk Krawczeniuk of The Times-Tribune found that DOJ officials never gave him permission, and Marino failed to produce his “evidence.” Krawczeniuk writes that the DOJ confirmed to multiple news outlets that Marino never sought or received such permission: “an Associated Press story, quoting an anonymous Justice Department source, said the department had ‘no record’ that Mr. Marino sought or received Justice authorization to serve as a reference for Mr. DeNaples. A Justice spokeswoman confirmed the department had no such record last week to The Citizens’ Voice newspaper in Wilkes-Barre, which is owned by the same company as The Times-Tribune.”

Eventually, Marino backed away from his false claim that he was given permission from the DOJ, and “told the Sunbury Daily Item he never asked the Justice Department for permission to serve as a reference.”

After Marino resigned in order to end the DOJ investigations into his actions, he quickly obtained a $250,000-a-year job as “DeNaples’ in-house lawyer.” In his financial disclosure form, Marino under-reported his income and stated that his DeNaples’ salary was just $25,000 annually.

The conservative blog RedState’s Zack Oldham said of Marino’s actions: “The reality is just as bad as–if not worse than–the optics of this scandal.”

Marino’s relationship with DeNaples and his attempts to cover-up his ethics troubles were not his first encounter with ethics questions. As a District Attorney, Marino approached a judge to toss out his friend’s conviction on drug charges. After the Judge refused, the Luzeme County Citizens Voice reports that Marino “approached another judge and won the expungement, but the plan backfired when the second judge learned of the first judge's involvement in the case.”

Despite the corruption accusations, false statements, and the DOJ investigation which plagued Marino’s legal career, House Republicans still picked him for a Judiciary Committee post. Perhaps, Marino was picked due to his staunchly anti-immigrant views, as incoming Judiciary Committee Chair Lamar Smith (R-TX) intends to use the committee to push a hard line agenda that includes overturning the 14th Amendment’s of birthright citizenship. Marino opposes comprehensive immigration reform, backs Arizona’s draconian SB 1070, and was endorsed by Americans for Legal Immigration PAC, which has been described as a “nativist extremist organization.” Just as Smith said that President Obama was “awfully close to a violation of [his] oath of office” as a result of his immigration policy, Marino said he would consider impeaching the President over his handling of immigration.

Like Marino, freshman Tim Griffin was forced to resign as a US Attorney and faced his own ethics questions. Griffin worked his way up through the Republican Party ranks through his work in opposition research and was known as “a protégé of Karl Rove.” He worked for the Bush presidential campaigns and has ties to Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. Griffin then aided efforts in the Bush White House to replace US Attorneys with partisan appointees, and then-US Attorney Paul Charlton said that Griffin “spread the rumors around the White House that Bud Cummins,” who was the US Attorney of Northeast Arkansas at the time, “was not a good U.S. attorney.”

When Cummins was fired, Griffin was appointed to take his place. Deputy Attorney General Paul McNaulty later testified that “Cummings was fired to make a place for Griffin at the urging of Karl Rove and Harriet Miers,” the former White House Counsel. Kyle Sampson, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’s Chief of Staff, wrote in an email that “getting him appointed was important to Harriet, Karl, etc.” Former US Attorney David Iglesias, said that Tim Griffin “never should have been U.S. Attorney, he was fundamentally unqualified.”

However, Griffin resigned from his position as US Attorney when the BBC uncovered documents showing his work in “vote caging” operations in Florida while he was working for the Bush reelection campaign. Griffin tried to suppress the vote by designing and sending out “caging lists” which “were heavily weighted with minority voters including homeless individuals, students and soldiers sent overseas.”

The Arkansas Leader wrote that “The White House intended to fully consolidate the entire federal criminal justice system into its political operation” and Griffin’s “resignation or dismissal ought to be imminent.” Griffin resigned from his post as US Attorney on May 30, 2007.

Now, two former US Attorneys who resigned under the cloud of scandal will have seats on the Judiciary Committee. By selecting Marino and Griffin, the Republican leadership rewarded coveted posts to two freshmen with serious and troubling ethics questions on the committee which oversees the court system, the rule of law, and law enforcement.

Dozens of GOP Leaders Declare Solidarity With Those Who Want To See Homosexuality Outlawed

Last week when Jeremy Hooper discovered that the Family Research Council was planning to roll out a campaign fighting back against the Southern Poverty Law Center's designation of the organization as an anti-gay hate group, we noted that FRC was asking people to sign on to the campaign to "stand in solidarity with Family Research Council, American Family Association, Concerned Women of America, National Organization for Marriage, Liberty Counsel and other pro-family organizations that are working to protect and promote natural marriage and family."

By doing so, we pointed out, any one who added their name was essentially declaring that they stood shoulder-to-shoulder with groups that proclaim:

Today, FRC announced that it was running this open letter [PDF] in both Politico and The Washington Examiner and that the effort had the support of dozens of Republican members of Congress and conservative leaders:

Family Research Council (FRC) announced the placement of a full-page open letter in today's print editions of Politico and the Washington Examiner responding to the Southern Poverty Law Center's (SPLC) recent attacks on FRC and other groups.

SPLC has targeted FRC and other organizations that uphold Judeo-Christian moral views, including marriage as the union of a man and a woman. The open letter, signed by more than 150 organizational leaders, Members of Congress and other elected officials, calls for a "vigorous but responsible exercise of the First Amendment rights of free speech and religious liberty that are the birthright of all Americans."

The open letter was signed by many current and former elected and government officials including Speaker-designate John Boehner, Majority Leader-elect Eric Cantor, U.S. Reps Mike Pence (R-IN), Michele Bachmann (R-MN), John Carter (R-TX), John Fleming (R-LA,) Trent Franks (R-AZ), Louie Gohmert (R-TX,) Gregg Harper (R-MS), Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Jim Jordan (R-OH), Steve King (R-IA,) Don Manzullo (R-IL), Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Joe Pitts (R-PA), Peter Roskam (R-LA), Lamar Smith (R-TX,) Steve Scalise (R-LA,) Fred Upton (R-MI), U.S. Senators Jim DeMint (R-SC), Jim Inhofe (R-OK,) David Vitter (R-LA), Roger Wicker (R-MS), Sam Brownback (Gov.-elect, Kansas), Governor Bobby Jindal, former Governor Mike Huckabee, Governor Tim Pawlenty, former Senator Rick Santorum, Edwin Meese III, former Attorney General of the United States, and Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.

For the record, here is the complete list of leaders who have publicly declared their solidarity with SPLC-designated anti-gay hate groups who want to see gays barred from serving in public office and homosexuality made illegal: 

Alaska Family Council Jim Minnery - President
American College of Pediatricians Tom Benton, MD - President
American Conservative Union Foundation Cleta Mitchell - Chairman
American Decency Association Bill Johnson - President
American Family Association Tim Wildmon - President
American Family Association of Pennsylvania Diane Gramley - President
American Principles Project Andresen Blom - Executive Director
American Values Gary Bauer - President
Association of Maryland Families Derek McCoy - President
Best-Selling Author and Host of Morning in America Dr. William J. Bennett
Calvary Chapel Jack Hibbs - Senior Pastor
Cardinal Newman Society Patrick Reilly - President
Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights Bill Donohue - President
CCV of Indiana PAC Joseph Sergio, Ph.D - Chairman
Center for Arizona Policy Cathi Herrod - President
Center for Law and Social Strategy Mark Spengler - Executive Director
Center for Security Policy Frank Gaffney - President and CEO
Center for Urban Renewal and Education Star Parker - President
Christian Civic League of Maine Carroll Conley - Executive Director
Christian Medical Association David Stevens - CEO
CitizenLink Tom Minnery - Senior Vice President, Public Policy
Citizens for Community Values Phil Burress - President
Citizens for Community Values of Indiana Patrick Mangan - Executive Director
CNSNews.com Chris Johnson - News Correspondant
CNSNews.com Eric Scheiner - Senior Video Producer
Coalition for Marriage and FamilyTom Shields - Chairman
Colorado Family Action Jessica Haverkate - Director
Committee for Justice Curt Levey - Executive Director
Concerned Citizens for Family Values of Connecticut Ray Kastner - President
Concerned Women For America Penny Nance - CEO
Concerned Women for American Wendy Wright - President
ConservativeHQ.com Richard Viguerie - Chairman
Coral Ridge Ministries Robert Knight - Senior Writer
Coral Ridge Ministries Hector Padron - Executive Vice President
Cornerstone Action, NH Kevin Smith - Executive Director
Cornerstone Family Council of ID Julie Lynde - Executive Director
Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation E. Calvin Beisner, Ph.D. - National Spokesman
Delaware Family Policy Council Nicole Theis - Executive Director
Design4 Marketing Communications Clint Cline - President
Eagle Forum Phyllis Schlafly - President
Ethics and Public Policy Center Rick Santorum - Senior Fellow
Faith Christian Fellowship Church The Rev Dr. R. Edgar Bonniwell - Senior Pastor
Family Action Council of Tennessee David Fowler - President
Family First (Nebraska FPC) Dave Bydalek Bydalek - Executive Director
Family Institute of Connecticut Peter Wolfgang - Executive Director
Florida Family Policy Counci lJohn Stemberger - President and General Counsel
ForAmerica David Bozell - Executive Director
Generals International Cindy Jacobs - President
Illinois Family Institute David Smith - Executive Director
Iowa Family Policy Center Chuck Hurley - President
Jews Offering New Alternatives to Homosexuality Elaine Silodor Berk - Director
Judicial Action Group Phillip Jauregui - President
Kansas Sam Brownback - Governor-elect
Kansas Family Policy Council Donna Lippoldt - Executive Director
Kingdom Warriors Ministry William Boykin - LTG(R) USArmy
Landmark Legal Foundation Mark Levin - President
Leadership Institute Morton Blackwell - President
Let Freedom Ring Colin Hanna - President
Liberty Center for Law and Policy Mandi Campbell - Legal Director
Liberty Counsel Matt Barber - Director of Cultural Affairs
Liberty Counsel Mathew Staver - Founder and Chairman
Liberty Institute Kelly Shackelford
Louisiana Bobby Jindal - Governor
Louisiana Family Forum Action Gene Mills - President
Massachusetts Family Institute Kris Mineau - President
Media Research Center Matthew Balan - news analyst
Media Research CenterL. Brent Bozell - Founder and President
Media Research Center Kyle Drennen - News Analyst
Media Research Center Matthew Hadro
Mike Huckabee - Former Governor, TV/ Radio Commentator
Minnesota Family Council David Eaton - Chairman
Minnesota Family Council John Helmberger - Chief Executive Officer
Mission America Linda Harvey - President
Missouri Family Policy Council Joe Ortwerth - Executive Director
National Organization for Marriage Brian Brown - President
National Organization for Marriage Maggie Gallagher - Chairman
National Organization for Marriage - Rhode Island Christopher Plante - Executive Director
National Review Rich Lowry - Editor
Nationally Syndicated Radio Talkshow Host Janet Parshall
Nevada Concerned Citizens Richard Ziser - Director
New Jersey Family First Len Deo - Founder & President
New Yorker's Family Research Foundation Rev. Tom Stiles
New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms Rev. Jason McGuire
North Dakota Family Alliance Tom Freier - Executive Director
Ohio Faith and Freedom Coalition Ken Blackwell - Chairman
Priests For LifeFr. Frank Pavone - National Director
Prison Fellowship and The Colson Center for Christian Worldview Chuck Colson - Founder
Public Service Research Foundation David Denholm - President
Radio America Franklin Raff - Sr. Executive Producer
Rappahannock Ventures WillIam Walton - Chairman
ReAL Action Rick Tyler - Chairman
RedState Erick-Woods Erickson - Editor
Renewing American Leadership Jim Garlow - Chairman
Republican Party of Louisiana Roger Villere, Jr. - Chairman
Restore America David Crowe - President
Retired Rensselaer Broekhuizen - Pastor
RightMarch.com William Greene - President
Shirley & Banister Public Affairs Diana Banister - Vice President
Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission Dr. Richard Land - President
State of Minnesota Tim Pawlenty - Governor
The American Spectator Alfred Regnery - Publisher
The Coalition of Conscience Michael Brown, Ph.D. - Director
The Diana Davis Spencer Foundation Abby Moffat - Vice President and COO
The Family Foundation of VirginiaVictoria Cobb - President
The Family Policy Council of WVJeremiah Dys, Esq. - President and General Counsel
The National Legal Foundation Steven Fitschen - President
THE New Voice, Inc.Herman Cain - CEO and President
The Oak InititativeRick Joyner - President
The Washington Examiner Mark Tapscott - Editorial Page Editor
TheCall Louis Engle - President
Tradition, Family, Property, Inc.C. Preston Noell III - President
Traditional Values Coalition Jody Hutchens - Regional Director
Traditional Values Coalition Andrea Lafferty - Executive Director
U.S. Congress Senator David Vitter - (R-LA)
U.S. Congress Senator Roger Wicker - (R-MS)
U.S. House of Representatives Congresswoman Michele Bachmann - (R-MN)
U.S. House of Representatives Speaker-designate John Boehner - (R-OH)
U.S. House of Representatives Majority Leader-elect Eric Cantor - (R-VA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman John Fleming, M.D. - (R-LA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Trent Franks - (R-AZ)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Louie Gohmert - (R-TX)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Jeb Henserling - (R-TX)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Jim Jordan - (R-OH)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Steve King - (R-IA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Donald Manzullo - (R-IL)
U.S. House of Representative sCongressman Kevin McCarthy - (R-CA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman-elect Alan Nunnelee - (R-MS)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Mike Pence - (R-IN)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Joe Pitts - (R-PA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Peter Roskam - (R-IL)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Steve Scalise - (R-LA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Lamar Smith - (R-TX)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Fred Upton - (R-MI)
United States SenateJim DeMint - Senator
Virginia Ken Cuccinelli - Attorney General
Western Center for Journalism Floyd Brown - President
Wisconsin Family Action Julaine Appling - President
WMtek Corp. Dan Pennell - CEO
WND.com Joseph Farah - Chief Executive Officer

Hotze: Hispanic Christians Will Be "Our Natural Allies Against the Democrats and Muslims"

Earlier this month, a conservative activist in Texas named Norman E. Adams unveiled a new group called "Texans for Sensible Immigration Policy" that seeks to implement a "sensible" immigration policy that falls somewhere between the draconian laws in Arizona and calls for "amnesty" by requiring ID cards, fines, and a call for "taxes on noncitizens [to be] a minimum 50% higher than Social Security/Medicare for citizens."

The reason Adams supports allowing Hispanics to come and work in this country is because the "combined fertility rate of American born citizens is barely 2%, considered unsustainable ... [because] since Roe v. Wade, we have aborted nearly fifty million children in the United States! This represents multiple generations of American-born workers!"

And Adams' proposal has now received the glowing endorsement of influential ultra-right-wing Texas activist Steven Hotze who explains that he admires people who are willing to break the law to better their lives and would gladly trade native born Americans for "Christian, pro-family, pro-life and pro-free enterprise" Hispanics who will be "our natural allies against the Democrats and Muslims":

I personally like the Hispanic people and their commitment to family and the work ethic. They are also a Christian based culture. I don't blame them for having made it to America by hook or crook. My great great grandfather pealed potatoes on a boat from Germany to get to America and the WASPs did not like him or the other immigrants that came with him. They also did not like the Irish or the Italians.

We had better embrace the Hispanics because they are going to be the dominant culture in Texas in no short order. I hope that Sen. Marco Rubio from Florida is our Republican VP in 2012.

...

It seems to me that there may be nativistic and prejudicial thinking on the immigration issue by many Caucasians.

The argument is that millions of Hispanics broke the law to get here. Which one of you would not have done the same thing had you been in their shoes? I like people who take risks to help their families and are willing to work to better their families' lives. We have a whole lot of American born citizens who I would gladly trade in exchange for hard working Hispanics.

The majority of the Hispanic culture in America is Christian, pro-family, pro-life and pro-free enterprise. Sounds like they would make great Republicans to me. Let's go recruit them!

Gentlemen, it seems that the real problem we face is the Muslim immigration invasion of America. The Hispanics are our natural allies against the Democrats and Muslims.

"If Hating Homosexuals Makes Our Church a Hate Group Then That's What We Are"

I've written several posts already about Religious Right groups fighting back against the Southern Poverty Law Center's updated list of anti-gay hate groups, so I guess I should also note that not everyone on the list is upset about.

In fact, Steven Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church is on the list and he openly admits that he "absolutely" hates gays:

Tucked in a Tempe strip mall sits the Faithful Word Baptist Church .

The church is not new and the controversy surrounding the beliefs of its leader are not new. However, a report released Wednesday by the Southern Poverty Law Center gives the church a new label.

The SPLC is now listing the church as a hate group targeting homosexuals in a list of hate groups operating in Arizona.

"Do I hate? Absolutely," said Faithful Word Baptist Church Pastor Steven Anderson.

Anderson wasn't aware of the new article and label by the SPLC and wasn't surprised. When asked if he hates homosexuals, Anderson quickly said, "absolutley."

Anderson's church made headlines several months ago when one of its members carried a rifle outside a downtown Phoenix building during a visit by President Barack Obama.

On Wednesday night, prior to service, Anderson declined to read the article posted by the SPLC.

"Am I all about hate? No I'm sure I'm more about love than I am hate," Anderson said. "I do hate homosexuals and if hating homosexuals makes our church a hate group then that's what we are."

The church leader, with a Bible in his hand during the interview, said he preaches his hatred for homosexuals and wishes death upon them.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 11/30/10

John Bolton

2012: Bush’s UN Ambassador considers presidential bid to bring emphasis to “foreign and national security issues” (Politico, 11/28).

Foreign Affairs: Writes Op-Ed against reviving six-party talks with North Korea (LA Times, 11/23).

Newt Gingrich

South Carolina: Set to address key Republican event in South Carolina (The Spartanburg Herald Journal, 11/28).

GOP: Scheduled to speak at conservative Latino forum on December 2nd (The Americano).

Mike Huckabee

Health Care: Says that the country doesn’t “have a health care crisis. We have a health crisis” (The Bakersfield Californian, 11/26).

Religious Right: May split Evangelical, women’s vote with Sarah Palin (The Fix, 11/23).

2012: Claims to be undecided about run in interview during his children’s book tour (Arizona Republic, 11/23).

Sarah Palin

Government: Blasts Obama over leaks, dubs WikiLeaks head a terrorist (Daily Mail, 11/30).

GOP: Joe Scarborough knocks Palin for mocking Ronald Reagan and George HW Bush, says she “embarrasses herself” (Politico, 11/30).

Women: Jamie Stiehm takes aim at Palin’s “faux-feminism” and claims Palin is a detriment to women in politics (US News & World Report, 11/30).

Health: Criticizes Michelle Obama’s “anti-obesity thing” (Essence, 11/27).

Mitt Romney

GOP: Wins support from George HW and Barbara Bush (LA Times, 11/24).

Poll: Leads other prospective presidential candidates with 20% support (Maris, 11/23).

Rick Santorum

New Hampshire: Tells NH audience he wants earmarks banned, even though he was an earmarker (Morning Call, 11/29).

Foreign Affairs: Blasts Obama over handling of Iran and WikiLeaks (AP, 11/30).

John Thune

2012: Thune’s chances of winning nomination strong according to political markets (Politico, 11/30).

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