Arizona

Porter's "Heartbeat Bill" Generates Interest In Other States

As we have noted several times in recent weeks, Faith 2 Action's Janet Porter has recently resurfaced in her native Ohio and is leading the effort to pass anti-choice legislation called "The Heartbeat Bill."

As part of this push, Porter has organized effort to send red, heart-shaped balloons to state legislators and today they are going to be delivered:

Thousands of shiny red heart-shaped balloons will be delivered to legislators today thanking (nearly half the House members who are co-sponsors) and encouraging the others to "Have a Heart! Support the Heartbeat Bill!" The Heartbeat Bill, which will be introduced this week, will legally protect all human beings in the state whose heartbeat can be heard.

...

Thousands of balloons, sent by residents from all over the state of Ohio and nation, will be delivered today to the 99 state representatives at the Vern Riffe State Office Tower.

"The Heartbeat Bill insures that if a heartbeat is detected, the baby is protected," states Janet (Folger) Porter, the president of Faith2Action and coordinator of bill-related efforts through www.HeartBeatBill.com. "You can help pass what will be the nation's most protective legislation when you go to www.HeartBeatBill.com," added Porter. "We're not going to wait any longer because the time to protect the babies is now."

Last week Porter and other activists, including Phll Burress of Citizens for Community Values, gathered for a press conference in a room filled with these balloons during which Porter reported that she is already getting calls from legislators in Oklahoma, Georgia, Texas, Kansas, and Arizona who are interested in introducing similar bills in their own states:

This is quite a change from Porter's recent activism wtih Cindy Jacobs praying that God will give Christians control over the media and every level of government:

Porter's "Heartbeat Bill" Generates Interest In Other States

As we have noted several times in recent weeks, Faith 2 Action's Janet Porter has recently resurfaced in her native Ohio and is leading the effort to pass anti-choice legislation called "The Heartbeat Bill."

As part of this push, Porter has organized effort to send red, heart-shaped balloons to state legislators and today they are going to be delivered:

Thousands of shiny red heart-shaped balloons will be delivered to legislators today thanking (nearly half the House members who are co-sponsors) and encouraging the others to "Have a Heart! Support the Heartbeat Bill!" The Heartbeat Bill, which will be introduced this week, will legally protect all human beings in the state whose heartbeat can be heard.

...

Thousands of balloons, sent by residents from all over the state of Ohio and nation, will be delivered today to the 99 state representatives at the Vern Riffe State Office Tower.

"The Heartbeat Bill insures that if a heartbeat is detected, the baby is protected," states Janet (Folger) Porter, the president of Faith2Action and coordinator of bill-related efforts through www.HeartBeatBill.com. "You can help pass what will be the nation's most protective legislation when you go to www.HeartBeatBill.com," added Porter. "We're not going to wait any longer because the time to protect the babies is now."

Last week Porter and other activists, including Phll Burress of Citizens for Community Values, gathered for a press conference in a room filled with these balloons during which Porter reported that she is already getting calls from legislators in Oklahoma, Georgia, Texas, Kansas, and Arizona who are interested in introducing similar bills in their own states:

This is quite a change from Porter's recent activism wtih Cindy Jacobs praying that God will give Christians control over the media and every level of government:

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.

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.

CPAC: How to Make Illegal Immigrants Go Home

CPAC’s panel on “real immigration reform” was moderated by Mark Krikorian of the nativist Center for Immigration Studies, which is connected to a network of anti-immigrant and white supremacist groups and individuals. Krikorian grumbled jokingly about his panel, which was not presented in the main ballroom, being at the “kid’s table.”

But the star of the panel was Kris Kobach, a right-wing activist who is now the Kansas Secretary of State, and who Krikorian suggested may be in a future CPAC presidential straw poll. Kobach, who helped draft Arizona’s HB 1070 law, offered his help to activists in other states to get similar laws passed.
 
Kobach promoted “attrition through enforcement” – basically denying illegal immigrants any opportunities to improve their lives so that they will just choose to go home – a strategy he said is working quite well in Arizona. He slammed the Obama administration for suing Arizona rather than welcoming the state’s help enforcing immigration laws.
 
Kobach offered a seven-point plan to implement his “attrition through enforcement” strategy and called for the political will to make it work nationally. In addition to building the border wall, adopting zero-tolerance policies for illegal immigrants and stepping up workplace raids, his plan includes cutting off federal law enforcement funds for “sanctuary cities” like San Francisco and denying federal education funds to any state that allows illegal immigrant students to pay in-state tuition to state colleges. He said Kansas is about to join Arizona and Georgia in requiring people to provide proof of citizenship to register to vote.
 
Kobach pushed for states to challenge birthright citizenship under the 14th Amendment and push Congress to adopt the “original understanding” of the 14th Amendment. (This right-wing talking point on the 14th Amendment is demonstrably, historically false.) He claimed to know about a Mexican woman who had previously given birth to triplets in the U.S. who was, while about to give birth to twins, lowered by ropes over the fence and into the U.S. in order to have her children become citizens. (The claim that there’s an “anchor baby” movement is another bogus claim by anti-immigrant activists.)
 
Other panelists included Dino Teppara of the Indian American Conservative Council who called the DREAM Act a “nightmare” and denounced the use of “politically correct” language on immigration. He called for Congress to find ways to clear the backlog of those trying to enter the country legally.
 
Another panelist, Jayne Cannava, from the group Pro-English, denounced a “mindless pursuit of diversity” and called for state laws making English the official language.   She said drivers’ license exams in every state should be offered only in English, and she praised other state legislative proposals like one that would require English proficiency as a condition of receiving any public assistance.

CPAC: How to Make Illegal Immigrants Go Home

CPAC’s panel on “real immigration reform” was moderated by Mark Krikorian of the nativist Center for Immigration Studies, which is connected to a network of anti-immigrant and white supremacist groups and individuals. Krikorian grumbled jokingly about his panel, which was not presented in the main ballroom, being at the “kid’s table.”

But the star of the panel was Kris Kobach, a right-wing activist who is now the Kansas Secretary of State, and who Krikorian suggested may be in a future CPAC presidential straw poll. Kobach, who helped draft Arizona’s HB 1070 law, offered his help to activists in other states to get similar laws passed.
 
Kobach promoted “attrition through enforcement” – basically denying illegal immigrants any opportunities to improve their lives so that they will just choose to go home – a strategy he said is working quite well in Arizona. He slammed the Obama administration for suing Arizona rather than welcoming the state’s help enforcing immigration laws.
 
Kobach offered a seven-point plan to implement his “attrition through enforcement” strategy and called for the political will to make it work nationally. In addition to building the border wall, adopting zero-tolerance policies for illegal immigrants and stepping up workplace raids, his plan includes cutting off federal law enforcement funds for “sanctuary cities” like San Francisco and denying federal education funds to any state that allows illegal immigrant students to pay in-state tuition to state colleges. He said Kansas is about to join Arizona and Georgia in requiring people to provide proof of citizenship to register to vote.
 
Kobach pushed for states to challenge birthright citizenship under the 14th Amendment and push Congress to adopt the “original understanding” of the 14th Amendment. (This right-wing talking point on the 14th Amendment is demonstrably, historically false.) He claimed to know about a Mexican woman who had previously given birth to triplets in the U.S. who was, while about to give birth to twins, lowered by ropes over the fence and into the U.S. in order to have her children become citizens. (The claim that there’s an “anchor baby” movement is another bogus claim by anti-immigrant activists.)
 
Other panelists included Dino Teppara of the Indian American Conservative Council who called the DREAM Act a “nightmare” and denounced the use of “politically correct” language on immigration. He called for Congress to find ways to clear the backlog of those trying to enter the country legally.
 
Another panelist, Jayne Cannava, from the group Pro-English, denounced a “mindless pursuit of diversity” and called for state laws making English the official language.   She said drivers’ license exams in every state should be offered only in English, and she praised other state legislative proposals like one that would require English proficiency as a condition of receiving any public assistance.

Arizona to Consider Bill Banning ‘Race-Based Abortion’

The anti-choice movement has consistently attempted to tar reproductive freedoms as anti-black genocide. Most recently, Rick Santorum said that it was “almost remarkable for a black man” like Obama to support abortion rights, and Terry Heck believes that Obama’s pro-choice position made him a “disgrace” to “his ancestors” like Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglass.

Now, a state legislator in Arizona wants to “criminalize abortions if they’re sought because of race or sex,” reports Cronkite News:

If a state lawmaker has his way, women seeking abortions in Arizona would be required to sign documents saying they’re not terminating a pregnancy because of the fetus’ race or sex.

Rep. Steve Montenegro, R-Litchfield Park, is sponsoring two bills that would criminalize abortions if they’re sought because of race or sex. Doctors knowingly performing abortions for those reasons would face Class 3 felony charges.

Michelle Steinberg, an Arizona policy manager for Planned Parenthood, said women should never have to make a case to get an abortion and called the bills demeaning and bizarre.

“This could be a slippery slope in terms of requiring women to disclose why they’re choosing abortion,” she said. “Women should never have to present a case to get an abortion.”

Montenegro didn’t respond to several requests for interviews left with his office and with a spokesman for House Republicans. However, he told Capitol Media Services that abortion clinics are targeting minority areas and that more females are aborted than males.

Steinberg said the fact that minority women seek more abortions stems from other problems.

“This idea that minority women are having abortions at higher rates than white women speaks more to rates of poverty, access to contraception and a lack of sex education,” she said. “This is not racial genocide for God’s sake; this is a real problem that we’re not addressing.”



U.S. Rep. Trent Franks, a Republican representing Arizona’s second district, in 2009 sponsored similar legislation: the Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act. The bill, which never made it out of committee, would have criminalized abortion because of the “sex, gender, color or race of the child, or the race of a parent.”

Illinois and Pennsylvania have laws prohibiting sex-selection abortions. Several other states, including Georgia, Mississippi, New Jersey, Idaho and Oklahoma have tried to enact legislation that would prevent sex- or race-selection abortions.



Roy Spece, a lawyer and professor at the University of Arizona’s law and medical schools who co-authored a book on cases of bioethics and the law, said Montenegro’s bills could move Arizona backward.

“We could return to the era when you have hospital committees who would decide why each specific woman’s reason for having an abortion is sufficient,” he said.

Arizona to Consider Bill Banning ‘Race-Based Abortion’

The anti-choice movement has consistently attempted to tar reproductive freedoms as anti-black genocide. Most recently, Rick Santorum said that it was “almost remarkable for a black man” like Obama to support abortion rights, and Terry Heck believes that Obama’s pro-choice position made him a “disgrace” to “his ancestors” like Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglass.

Now, a state legislator in Arizona wants to “criminalize abortions if they’re sought because of race or sex,” reports Cronkite News:

If a state lawmaker has his way, women seeking abortions in Arizona would be required to sign documents saying they’re not terminating a pregnancy because of the fetus’ race or sex.

Rep. Steve Montenegro, R-Litchfield Park, is sponsoring two bills that would criminalize abortions if they’re sought because of race or sex. Doctors knowingly performing abortions for those reasons would face Class 3 felony charges.

Michelle Steinberg, an Arizona policy manager for Planned Parenthood, said women should never have to make a case to get an abortion and called the bills demeaning and bizarre.

“This could be a slippery slope in terms of requiring women to disclose why they’re choosing abortion,” she said. “Women should never have to present a case to get an abortion.”

Montenegro didn’t respond to several requests for interviews left with his office and with a spokesman for House Republicans. However, he told Capitol Media Services that abortion clinics are targeting minority areas and that more females are aborted than males.

Steinberg said the fact that minority women seek more abortions stems from other problems.

“This idea that minority women are having abortions at higher rates than white women speaks more to rates of poverty, access to contraception and a lack of sex education,” she said. “This is not racial genocide for God’s sake; this is a real problem that we’re not addressing.”



U.S. Rep. Trent Franks, a Republican representing Arizona’s second district, in 2009 sponsored similar legislation: the Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act. The bill, which never made it out of committee, would have criminalized abortion because of the “sex, gender, color or race of the child, or the race of a parent.”

Illinois and Pennsylvania have laws prohibiting sex-selection abortions. Several other states, including Georgia, Mississippi, New Jersey, Idaho and Oklahoma have tried to enact legislation that would prevent sex- or race-selection abortions.



Roy Spece, a lawyer and professor at the University of Arizona’s law and medical schools who co-authored a book on cases of bioethics and the law, said Montenegro’s bills could move Arizona backward.

“We could return to the era when you have hospital committees who would decide why each specific woman’s reason for having an abortion is sufficient,” he said.

Right Wing Round-Up

Right Wing Round-Up

Right Wing Blogger In Trouble for Insulting Native American Prayer at Tucson Memorial

After the Tucson memorial service, many right wing bloggers attacked President Obama’s speech on civility in politics and falsely claimed that organizers encouraged the applause throughout the President’s address. One Power Line blogger, Paul Mirengoff, had another target: Dr. Carlos Gonzales, a Native American professor at the University of Arizona’s College of Medicine who gave a Pascua Yaqui prayer at the service. Mirengoff believed that, despite a number of readings from the Bible from other speakers, Dr. Gonzales’s prayer wasn’t “Christian” or “American” enough, and did a disservice to the memorial:

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.

It turns out though that Mirengoff is a partner at a law firm, Akin Gump, which has an active practice in Native American communities, who may not take kindly to Mirengoff’s dismissive and denigrating post about Gonzales’s prayer. The Careerist reports on the reaction to Mirengoff’s post:

Most firms wouldn't give a hoot about the personal rants of their lawyers except for one sticky fact: Akin Gump happens to have a thriving Native American tribes practice. Oops.

But to give the firm credit, it acted quickly. Three apologies were fired off almost immediately--though it's unclear in what order they were sent. James Meggesto, a partner in the Native American practice at the firm, posted the following on Akin Gump's Web site:
  
"As an enrolled member of the Onondaga Nation; as an attorney who has dedicated his life and law practice to the representation of Indian tribes, tribal organizations, and tribal interests; and as a partner in the American Indian law and policy practice at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, I was shocked, appalled and embarrassed by a recent Web posting by another Akin Gump partner, Paul Mirengoff. . . . As soon as I and the firm became aware of this posting, the firm took immediate action to deal firmly with this unfortunate situation. Accordingly, Bruce McLean, chairman of the firm, issued the following statement: “We sincerely apologize for the blog entry posted by Akin Gump partner Paul Mirengoff on his personal blog, powerlineblog.com. Akin Gump is neither affiliated with, nor a supporter of, the blog. We found his remarks to be insensitive and wholly inconsistent with Akin Gump’s values. . . . "

Mirengoff also fell on his sword, and issued the following apology (which is both on his blog and the firm Web site):

"In a post last night, I criticized the use of a Yaqui prayer as the invocation to the memorial service in Tucson. In doing so, I failed to give the prayer the respect it deserves. Although I did not intend this as a slight to the religion or to the Yaqui tribe, it can clearly be interpreted as one. For this, I sincerely apologize to my readers, to the Yaqui tribe, to all tribal leaders and Indian people and, specifically, to Carlos Gonzales, who delivered the prayer. I regret my poor choice of words, and I have removed the post."

 

Right Wing Blogger In Trouble for Insulting Native American Prayer at Tucson Memorial

After the Tucson memorial service, many right wing bloggers attacked President Obama’s speech on civility in politics and falsely claimed that organizers encouraged the applause throughout the President’s address. One Power Line blogger, Paul Mirengoff, had another target: Dr. Carlos Gonzales, a Native American professor at the University of Arizona’s College of Medicine who gave a Pascua Yaqui prayer at the service. Mirengoff believed that, despite a number of readings from the Bible from other speakers, Dr. Gonzales’s prayer wasn’t “Christian” or “American” enough, and did a disservice to the memorial:

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.

It turns out though that Mirengoff is a partner at a law firm, Akin Gump, which has an active practice in Native American communities, who may not take kindly to Mirengoff’s dismissive and denigrating post about Gonzales’s prayer. The Careerist reports on the reaction to Mirengoff’s post:

Most firms wouldn't give a hoot about the personal rants of their lawyers except for one sticky fact: Akin Gump happens to have a thriving Native American tribes practice. Oops.

But to give the firm credit, it acted quickly. Three apologies were fired off almost immediately--though it's unclear in what order they were sent. James Meggesto, a partner in the Native American practice at the firm, posted the following on Akin Gump's Web site:
  
"As an enrolled member of the Onondaga Nation; as an attorney who has dedicated his life and law practice to the representation of Indian tribes, tribal organizations, and tribal interests; and as a partner in the American Indian law and policy practice at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, I was shocked, appalled and embarrassed by a recent Web posting by another Akin Gump partner, Paul Mirengoff. . . . As soon as I and the firm became aware of this posting, the firm took immediate action to deal firmly with this unfortunate situation. Accordingly, Bruce McLean, chairman of the firm, issued the following statement: “We sincerely apologize for the blog entry posted by Akin Gump partner Paul Mirengoff on his personal blog, powerlineblog.com. Akin Gump is neither affiliated with, nor a supporter of, the blog. We found his remarks to be insensitive and wholly inconsistent with Akin Gump’s values. . . . "

Mirengoff also fell on his sword, and issued the following apology (which is both on his blog and the firm Web site):

"In a post last night, I criticized the use of a Yaqui prayer as the invocation to the memorial service in Tucson. In doing so, I failed to give the prayer the respect it deserves. Although I did not intend this as a slight to the religion or to the Yaqui tribe, it can clearly be interpreted as one. For this, I sincerely apologize to my readers, to the Yaqui tribe, to all tribal leaders and Indian people and, specifically, to Carlos Gonzales, who delivered the prayer. I regret my poor choice of words, and I have removed the post."

 

Graham: Tucson Victims Denied Comfort Because of Prayers to "Father Sky" and "Mother Earth"

During the January 12 memorial service for the victims of the tragic Tucson shooting, a traditional Native American blessing was delivered by Carlos Gonzales, an associate professor at the University of Arizona College of Medicine ... and the Right has been outraged by it ever since.

Earlier this week, the Washington Times ran an op-ed by Franklin Graham blasting organizers for allowing such a prayer because "Father Sky and Mother Earth can do nothing to comfort" the victims: 

Rather than calling on the God of heaven who made us and created this universe, which He holds in the palm of His hand, the university professor called out to "Father Sky, where we get our masculine energy" and "Mother Earth, where we get our feminine energy."

How sad. Father Sky and Mother Earth can do nothing to comfort Capt. Mark Kelly, who had been at the bedside of his wife, Rep. Giffords, wondering if she'd ever leave her bed. Or Mavy Stoddard, who was only alive because her husband sacrificed his life by shielding her with his body. Or the family, classmates, teammates and friends of little Christina, whose life was snuffed out before she could play another season of Little League.

For the sake of these innocent people and for Americans everywhere, I wish someone could have prayed to the One who created all of us, Almighty God. The president quoted from the great textbook of grief, the Old Testament book of Job - always fitting words in times like these. Perhaps the Yaqui tribe representative, the president of the university - someone - could have echoed the words of the Psalmist: "I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth."

What a shame that the University of Arizona didn't have enough sensitivity to suffering families and a watching nation to invoke the name of the God who is "Father to the fatherless and protector of widows."

Graham: Tucson Victims Denied Comfort Because of Prayers to "Father Sky" and "Mother Earth"

During the January 12 memorial service for the victims of the tragic Tucson shooting, a traditional Native American blessing was delivered by Carlos Gonzales, an associate professor at the University of Arizona College of Medicine ... and the Right has been outraged by it ever since.

Earlier this week, the Washington Times ran an op-ed by Franklin Graham blasting organizers for allowing such a prayer because "Father Sky and Mother Earth can do nothing to comfort" the victims: 

Rather than calling on the God of heaven who made us and created this universe, which He holds in the palm of His hand, the university professor called out to "Father Sky, where we get our masculine energy" and "Mother Earth, where we get our feminine energy."

How sad. Father Sky and Mother Earth can do nothing to comfort Capt. Mark Kelly, who had been at the bedside of his wife, Rep. Giffords, wondering if she'd ever leave her bed. Or Mavy Stoddard, who was only alive because her husband sacrificed his life by shielding her with his body. Or the family, classmates, teammates and friends of little Christina, whose life was snuffed out before she could play another season of Little League.

For the sake of these innocent people and for Americans everywhere, I wish someone could have prayed to the One who created all of us, Almighty God. The president quoted from the great textbook of grief, the Old Testament book of Job - always fitting words in times like these. Perhaps the Yaqui tribe representative, the president of the university - someone - could have echoed the words of the Psalmist: "I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth."

What a shame that the University of Arizona didn't have enough sensitivity to suffering families and a watching nation to invoke the name of the God who is "Father to the fatherless and protector of widows."

Fischer Longs for a "Simple" System of Biblical Justice

Bryan Fischer is outraged by the news that the trial of Jared Loughner is going to be moved from Tucson, Arizona, to San Diego, California because moving the trial is "contrary to biblical concepts of justice":

Innocent blood was shed in Tucson, and the public servants of Tucson should be entrusted with the responsibility and authority to execute justice on behalf of the victims and their families.

It is a perversion of justice to deprive this community of the ability to deal with the monstrous act of evil. The murders of six innocent people by the Marxist-loving, Hitler-loving, Bible-hating, atheistic pothead radical leftwinger Loughner is traumatic enough on a city. Now to be deprived of the authority to see for themselves that justice is done is a second injustice.

In the ancient civil code of Israel, the community in which the murder had been committed had the responsibility to carry out justice. The standards of evidence were very high - no one could be sentenced to death without the testimony of two or three eyewitnesses - but when the standard had been met, execution followed.

It’s worth nothing, by the way, that if biblical standards of evidence were still followed in America’s judicial system, as they once were, you would have only an infinitesimal chance of sending an innocent man to death row. Too many are sentenced to die or to long prison terms today based on the testimony of a single witness. That’s exactly how you get innocent people sent away for life. Once again, the Bible is the solution, not the problem.

The only exception was that when a man killed another man unintentionally - the death was accidental - he could flee for safety to a city of refuge until his trial was held. (It’s worthy of note that there was no system of incarceration in ancient Israel. A crime against property was taken care of through restitution plus a substantial penalty. A crime against life was taken care of through execution. Think of the money we could save if we returned to something approximating this simple but elegant system of justice.)

Is anyone surprised that Fischer wants to see our justice system modeled on these "simple" Biblical principles which demand that adulterers, gays, those who curse their parents and those who worship other gods be put to death?

We can just add this to Fischer's long history of demanding that America's legal system needs to operate according to Old Testament principles and practices.

Fischer Longs for a "Simple" System of Biblical Justice

Bryan Fischer is outraged by the news that the trial of Jared Loughner is going to be moved from Tucson, Arizona, to San Diego, California because moving the trial is "contrary to biblical concepts of justice":

Innocent blood was shed in Tucson, and the public servants of Tucson should be entrusted with the responsibility and authority to execute justice on behalf of the victims and their families.

It is a perversion of justice to deprive this community of the ability to deal with the monstrous act of evil. The murders of six innocent people by the Marxist-loving, Hitler-loving, Bible-hating, atheistic pothead radical leftwinger Loughner is traumatic enough on a city. Now to be deprived of the authority to see for themselves that justice is done is a second injustice.

In the ancient civil code of Israel, the community in which the murder had been committed had the responsibility to carry out justice. The standards of evidence were very high - no one could be sentenced to death without the testimony of two or three eyewitnesses - but when the standard had been met, execution followed.

It’s worth nothing, by the way, that if biblical standards of evidence were still followed in America’s judicial system, as they once were, you would have only an infinitesimal chance of sending an innocent man to death row. Too many are sentenced to die or to long prison terms today based on the testimony of a single witness. That’s exactly how you get innocent people sent away for life. Once again, the Bible is the solution, not the problem.

The only exception was that when a man killed another man unintentionally - the death was accidental - he could flee for safety to a city of refuge until his trial was held. (It’s worthy of note that there was no system of incarceration in ancient Israel. A crime against property was taken care of through restitution plus a substantial penalty. A crime against life was taken care of through execution. Think of the money we could save if we returned to something approximating this simple but elegant system of justice.)

Is anyone surprised that Fischer wants to see our justice system modeled on these "simple" Biblical principles which demand that adulterers, gays, those who curse their parents and those who worship other gods be put to death?

We can just add this to Fischer's long history of demanding that America's legal system needs to operate according to Old Testament principles and practices.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 1/18/10

Michele Bachmann

GOP: Scheduled to address Montana GOP's Lincoln/Reagan Dinner on Feb 5 (Politico, 1/17).

Iowa: Conservatives in Iowa excited about Bachmann's appearance at Iowans for Tax Relief event this week (Minnesota Public Radio, 1/17).

Religious Right: Ultraconservative writer Joseph Farah praises potential Bachmann bid (WND, 1/11).

Haley Barbour

Immigration: Draconian Arizona-style law on immigrant rights to be considered by the Mississippi state legislature (Fox News, 1/17).

2012: Says he won't make a decision about a presidential run until the spring (WSJ, 1/14).

John Bolton

2012: Tells Russia Today that he could win the GOP nomination since he is in "the mainstream of the Republican Party" (GOP12, 1/17).

Foreign affairs: Knocks Obama Administration's handling of the political crisis in Lebanon (The Hill, 1/16).

Mike Huckabee

Alaska: Travelling to Alaska with a "Christian-based" cruise (HuffPo, 1/14).

Religious Right: Sarah Posner analyzes Huckabee's ties to Evangelical voters, "Christian nation mythology" (Religion Dispatches, 1/12).

Sarah Palin

Fox News: Tells Sean Hannity that Tucson shooting was "left-leaning," defends herself from criticism (Mediaite, 1/17).

Polling: Performs well among Republicans nationwide, but not in early primary states (Public Policy Polling, 1/14).

Arizona: Video response to Tucson shootings widely panned (Politico, 1/13; Salon, 1/12).

Tim Pawlenty

Economics: Opposes raising the debt ceiling despite prospect of default (HufPo, 1/16).

Religious Right: Tells Bryan Fischer of AFA that he supports reinstating Don't Ask Don't Tell (RWW, 1/13).

Palin: Says that her "bullseye" crosshairs map of congressional Democrats isn't "his style" (MinnPost, 1/12).

Mike Pence

2012: Former GOP Congressman launches a draft-Pence petition called the American President Committee (AP, 1/17).

Reproductive Rights: Planned Parenthood criticizes Pence's legislation to strip the group of federal funds (Muncie Star Press, 1/12).

Media: Introduces bill to block possible implementation of the Fairness Doctrine on talk radio (The Hill, 1/12).

Gun Violence: Denounces calls for gun control measures after Tuscon shootings (TPM, 1/12).

Rick Perry

2012: Begins polling voters outside of Texas (NRO, 1/17).

Immigration: Presses for new laws to curb immigrant rights (NYT, 1/15).

Mitt Romney

Foreign affairs: Meets with Israel's Prime Minister after visiting Afghanistan (Politico, 1/14).

Campaign: Hires new political director and pollster (RealClearPolitics, 1/13).

2012: Signs point to spring announcement as Romney steps down from the board of Marriott International (AP, 1/12).

Rick Santorum

South Carolina: Addressed the Aiken Republican Club 2011 kickoff meeting (The Augusta Chronicle, 1/17).

Religious Right: Keynoted major anti-choice rally in Columbia, South Carolina (The State, 1/16).

New Hampshire: Interviewed by Boston Herald at Granite Oath PAC house party (Boston Herald, 1/14).

John Thune

CPAC: Set to address Conservative Political Action Conference in February despite Religious Right boycott (Argus Leader, 1/13).

GOP: Keynote speaker for Missouri Republican Party's Lincoln Days fundraiser (News Leader, 1/11).

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 1/18/10

Michele Bachmann

GOP: Scheduled to address Montana GOP's Lincoln/Reagan Dinner on Feb 5 (Politico, 1/17).

Iowa: Conservatives in Iowa excited about Bachmann's appearance at Iowans for Tax Relief event this week (Minnesota Public Radio, 1/17).

Religious Right: Ultraconservative writer Joseph Farah praises potential Bachmann bid (WND, 1/11).

Haley Barbour

Immigration: Draconian Arizona-style law on immigrant rights to be considered by the Mississippi state legislature (Fox News, 1/17).

2012: Says he won't make a decision about a presidential run until the spring (WSJ, 1/14).

John Bolton

2012: Tells Russia Today that he could win the GOP nomination since he is in "the mainstream of the Republican Party" (GOP12, 1/17).

Foreign affairs: Knocks Obama Administration's handling of the political crisis in Lebanon (The Hill, 1/16).

Mike Huckabee

Alaska: Travelling to Alaska with a "Christian-based" cruise (HuffPo, 1/14).

Religious Right: Sarah Posner analyzes Huckabee's ties to Evangelical voters, "Christian nation mythology" (Religion Dispatches, 1/12).

Sarah Palin

Fox News: Tells Sean Hannity that Tucson shooting was "left-leaning," defends herself from criticism (Mediaite, 1/17).

Polling: Performs well among Republicans nationwide, but not in early primary states (Public Policy Polling, 1/14).

Arizona: Video response to Tucson shootings widely panned (Politico, 1/13; Salon, 1/12).

Tim Pawlenty

Economics: Opposes raising the debt ceiling despite prospect of default (HufPo, 1/16).

Religious Right: Tells Bryan Fischer of AFA that he supports reinstating Don't Ask Don't Tell (RWW, 1/13).

Palin: Says that her "bullseye" crosshairs map of congressional Democrats isn't "his style" (MinnPost, 1/12).

Mike Pence

2012: Former GOP Congressman launches a draft-Pence petition called the American President Committee (AP, 1/17).

Reproductive Rights: Planned Parenthood criticizes Pence's legislation to strip the group of federal funds (Muncie Star Press, 1/12).

Media: Introduces bill to block possible implementation of the Fairness Doctrine on talk radio (The Hill, 1/12).

Gun Violence: Denounces calls for gun control measures after Tuscon shootings (TPM, 1/12).

Rick Perry

2012: Begins polling voters outside of Texas (NRO, 1/17).

Immigration: Presses for new laws to curb immigrant rights (NYT, 1/15).

Mitt Romney

Foreign affairs: Meets with Israel's Prime Minister after visiting Afghanistan (Politico, 1/14).

Campaign: Hires new political director and pollster (RealClearPolitics, 1/13).

2012: Signs point to spring announcement as Romney steps down from the board of Marriott International (AP, 1/12).

Rick Santorum

South Carolina: Addressed the Aiken Republican Club 2011 kickoff meeting (The Augusta Chronicle, 1/17).

Religious Right: Keynoted major anti-choice rally in Columbia, South Carolina (The State, 1/16).

New Hampshire: Interviewed by Boston Herald at Granite Oath PAC house party (Boston Herald, 1/14).

John Thune

CPAC: Set to address Conservative Political Action Conference in February despite Religious Right boycott (Argus Leader, 1/13).

GOP: Keynote speaker for Missouri Republican Party's Lincoln Days fundraiser (News Leader, 1/11).

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?”

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?”
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