Minnesota

Right Wing Round-Up

Pawlenty Requests Stimulus Funds He Criticized

After criticizing Congress for passing a $26 billion aid package to state governments, Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty has sent a formal request to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius for $236 million for Medicaid from the very same funding bill he blasted as a “reckless spending spree.” After pronouncing that “the federal government should not deficit spend to bail out states,” the governor and likely presidential candidate even offered clues that he won’t accept any new money from the federal government (unless that money was for abstinence-only programs).

Pawlenty decided to relent like other “principled” Republican governors before him such as Sarah Palin and Mark Sanford, who proudly disparage government programs and threaten to refuse the federal aid meant to protect the jobs of public employees and salvage state budgets—then agree to accepting stimulus dollars when it’s politically convenient. Similar to the Republican members of Congress who proudly vote against the stimulus and later publicly take credit for providing stimulus dollars in their districts, Pawlenty is attempting to both please the anti-government zealots in the GOP base while also benefiting from Democratic efforts to govern responsibly.

Pawlenty’s backpedaling on the stimulus coincides with the news that Michele Bachmann isn’t the only government spending-critic to receive farm subsidies from the federal government, as Indiana’s favorite Tea Party politician and congressional candidate Marlin Stutzman also obtains federal aid in the form of farm subsidies. Stutzman, who explicitly said that “it’s time to get rid of farm subsidies” in the name of free market orthodoxy, collected $179,370 from the federal government since 1995 for his farm.

For Republicans such as Pawlenty and Stutzman, it’s easy to denounce federal spending to further their political careers and agendas, but they still have no problem with benefiting from the same federal government programs they rail against.

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The Company That Bachmann Keeps

Yesterday I wrote about the fact that Rep. Michele Bachmann had signed on to speak at Joseph Farah's "Take Back America Conferece" with a bunch of Birthers, fake prostitutes, anti-gay militants, and Christian Reconstructionists. 

Today Andy Birkey posted a link to Bachmann's financial disclosure form [PDF] and noted that she reported having accepted seven trips paid for by right-wing groups - Young America's Foundation, American Israel Education Foundation, Eagle Forum, Concerned Women for America, National Home Education Legal Defense, Council of Graduate Students at Regent University, and David Horowitz's Freedom Center:

If Bachamann is being flown around the country by YAF, Phyllis Schlafly, CWA, and David Horowitz, I guess that is shouldn't come as much of a surprise that she'd be more than willing to associate with the likes of Joseph Farah, Alan Keyes, and Matt Barber. 

Right Wing Round-Up

  • Think Progress: Opponents of same-sex marriage ask Prop. 8 judge to invalidate 18,000 marriages of gay couples.
  • Towleroad: Study: Millions of Dollars Spent on Proposition 8 and Similar Campaigns Has Been a Complete Waste.
  • Adam Shah: Witch hunt: Wash. Times literally tells its readers to be "very afraid" of Obama judges.
  • Joe.My.God: Baptist Softball League Bans Entire Team Over Lesbian Coach.
  • Adele Stan: Arch-Conservative U.S. Christians Help Uganda 'Kill-the-Gays' Bill Stay Alive.
  • Minnesota Independent: Pawlenty takes first step toward 2012 bid.
  • Religion Dispatches: DeMint Uses Christian Reconstructionist Mailing List To Raise Money For Angle.
  • Autumn Sandeen: The Prophet Hartline Speaks On Recent Natural Disasters.
  • Steve Benen: Republicans Just Don't Like The Unemployed, Cont'd ...
  • Kevin Drum: Psychoanalyzing the Tea Partiers.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • Raw Story: Republican candidate suggests landmines at US-Mexico border.
  • Andy Birkey: New PAC aims to put conservative Christians into Minnesota courts.
  • Sarah Posner: Is Sarah Palin The New Leader Of The Christian Right?
  • HRC Backstory: Prop 8 Trial to Conclude on Wednesday After Lengthy Hiatus.
  • Washington Independent: Rep. King: Spot Illegal Immigrants by Their ‘Shoes,’ ‘Grooming,’ ‘Accent’ or ‘a Sixth Sense’.
  • David Weigel: Grover Norquist joins GOProud.
  • Joe.My.God: McDonald's COO: I'm A Christian And That Gay Ad Will Never Play In America.
  • Justin Elliot: Sharron Angle Left Far-Right Third Party For Electoral Expedience, Members Say.
  • Simon Maloy: Glenn Beck's The Overton Window: A conspiracy to bore you senseless.

Harry Jackson Mentors and Praises Radio Hosts Who Claim Gays Are Committing "Extended Suicide"

The Minnesota Independent's Andy Birkey reports that Bishop Harry Jackson has been mentoring organizers of a hard rock ministry and recently appeared on their radio program when they were broadcasting from the Heritage Foundation, during which they voiced their support for imprisoning gays and claimed that gays are really just committing extended suicide:  

The leaders of You Can Run But You Cannot Hide Intl., Inc., a hard rock ministry that holds Christian assemblies in public schools around the Midwest, said that locking up gays and lesbians in prison is the “right” and “moral” thing to do. A week earlier, the group said that countries instituting the death penalty for homosexuality are “more moral” than Christians in the United States. The group broadcast live from the Heritage Foundation last weekend, offering another example of the group’s close relationship with the conservative movement.

On the group’s radio show, broadcast live from the Heritage Foundation on May 22, co-leader Jake McMillian praised the actions of the African nation of Malawi which has recently arrested a gay couple for getting engaged.

“They are very conservative,” he said. “They sentence people for crimes against nature.”

Frontman Bradlee Dean added, “They are very moral; they uphold the laws.”

McMillian continued, “We have got countries all over the world that are standing for what’s right and what’s wrong. In Rwanda, there’s legislation right now that repeat offenders of homosexuality will spend their life in prison.”

“Yes!” interjected Dean.

“Because they love and value life and they love and value that which God gave,” said McMillian. “And so they enforce laws against that which destroys life which again is crimes against nature”

The group later brought in Bishop Harry Jackson, an anti-gay marriage activist in Washington, D.C., who praised the group’s work. “I believe a great awakening is about to come forth,” said Jackson. “I believe you are a part of it and those that hear the sound of your voice are revolutionaries.”

I recorded some of the audio from the program as the hosts rail against homosexuality as an abomination and a crime against nature before explaining how Harry Jackson has been reaching out to them and including them in events, including the recent Awakening conference at Liberty University, at which point Jackson praised their program as "amazing" and likened them to Martin Luther King Jr.:

May Day 2010: Repenting for Porn, the Runaways, and Muslims in Congress

The 10:00-11:00 hour of the May Day 2010 prayer rally was dedicated to "Repentance for the Mountain of Arts & Entertainment."

I have edited it down to give you the highlights, including Ted Baehr repenting for the movie "The Runaways" with its sex, and drugs, and rock and roll, while others repent for Los Angeles and its role as the home of the pornography industry.  Eventually, Janet Porter repents for all the time and money Christians have given to an industry that hates God and prays that Christians will gain control over the industry and take dominion until Christ returns.  That is then followed by a woman from Minnesota who repents for her state having elected the first Muslim to Congress ... and then eventually God shows up at the rally: 

Be Very Afraid

No good can possibly come of this:

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and Ralph Reed

Look Who's Joined The Tea Party

As I've noted several times already, the social conservatives in the Religious Right have been trying desperately to associate themselves with the Tea Party movement, even though Tea Party activists have been uninterested in making issues like abortion or gay rights a key part of the movement's agenda.

This, in turn, has lead some Religious Right activists to try and hijack the Tea Party name and attach it to his own Religious Right agenda, while others has tried to partner with the fiscal conservatives leading the Tea Party movement, even though they have been on less-than-friendly terms in recent years.

Now comes news that several local Tea Party groups are forming a federation with several established national groups in order to better coordinate strategy:

Several tea party leaders announced plans Thursday to form a national federation to promote the movement's conservative message and to counter the idea that the tea parties are politically unsophisticated and disorganized.

Tea party leaders from Memphis, Tenn., Richmond, Va., and Orlando, Fla., along with representatives of several other groups announced the new National Tea Party Federation during a rally outside the Minnesota Capitol. They said 21 tea party groups around the nation had joined the federation.

Memphis Tea Party founder Mark Skoda said recent media coverage had questioned whether the conservative tea parties, which number in the thousands nationwide, were too loosely organized to be politically effective in the national midterm election. He said the federation intends to convey a unified message about the tea party's brand of fiscal conservatism, which emphasizes limited government, less public spending and free markets.

He said the organization also hopes to rebut allegations about the movement: "Everything from calling the tea party members racist, that we are violent, that somehow we are fermenting another Kristallnacht. These accusations are indeed false and they won't stand."

The organizers said that the federation does not intend to direct activities by the farflung groups, but to improve communications among them, along with affiliate groups such as Americans for Tax Reform, Let Freedom Ring and Citizens United.

Now it makes sense that local Tea Party groups would partner with national groups that share their agenda ... but look who else has joined this federation:

One of the affiliated organizations, the Family Research Council, works primarily to oppose abortion rights and gay marriage. Skoda said the tea party movement would not make those issues part if its core mission but could still find points of common ground with conservative social-issue groups.

"The family needs to have low tax rates, choice on health care, no mandate on health care, and the automony to make decisions. The family is an important part of our strategy," Skoda said.

So to the extent that issues like taxes and health care can be considered "pro-family" issues, the Tea Party activists are fine to partner with the likes of FRC, but they won't be taking on the contentious social issues that are FRC's primary focus.

Wasn't it just a few weeks ago that FRC was complaining that groups like FreedomWorks and the other libertarian organization's did not represent the "true tea parties" because the "real" Tea Parties cared about social issues? 

If so, why as FRC now joined up with all those libertarian Tea Party organizations when they have been explicitly told that their social issues will have no place on the agenda?

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann paired up for a campaign event today in Minnesota.  Somehow the universe did not implode.
  • The AFA's Don Wildmon will be a featured guest at the Florida Family Policy Council's 5th Annual Policy Awards Dinner where he will receive the FFPC's Lifetime Achievement Award, the Daniel Webster Award for Principled Service to Public Policy.
  • For some reason, Phyllis Schlafly is really focused on preventing a second Constitutional Convention. Is anybody calling for a second Constitutional Convention?
  • Peter LaBarber hops aboard Matt Barber's "the Left is just like Fred Phelps" bandwagon.
  • Thomas Sowell accuses President Obama of exploiting polarization, just like what happened in Rwanda.
  • Finally, it seems appropriate that Alan Keyes will be speaking at Tea Party rally that will be held at the Nutter Center.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • Alan Colmes: Doctor Against Treating Obama Supporters Admits Not Knowing What’s In Health Reform Bill.
  • Americans United: Religious Right Leader Says He Fears Theocracy (And We Fear He’s Fibbing).
  • Towleroad: Deepak Chopra Apologizes for Causing Mexicali Earthquake.
  • Minneapolis City Pages: Michele Bachmann's Census claptrap ignored in Minnesota.
  • Justin Elliot: Idaho GOP Gov Hopeful: I'm OK With Militias Showing 'A Little Force.'
  • Think Progress: GOP Willing To Filibuster Obama’s Yet-To-Be-Named SCOTUS Nominee.
  • Finally, John McCain declares "I never considered myself a maverick" and Steve Benen calls it "as pathetic a political display as anything we've seen in quite a while."

Right Wing Leftovers

  • FRC's Tom McClusky says his statement about President Obama being our "first gay President" was just a joke.
  • Liberty University Chancellor defends secretly recording a meeting with city officials as the school seeks to pressure the City Council to change its zoning status.
  • Utah Gov. Gary R. Herbert has signed two bills authorizing the state to use eminent domain to seize land held by the federal government.
  • Hooray!  Another person with ties to Wallbuilders is running for office in Texas.
  • Governor Rick Perry of Texas and Governor Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota have declared April as Abortion Recovery/Awareness Month.
  • Rob Schenck and Pat Mahoney have completed their annual Stations of the Cross pilgrimage.
  • I never thought I 'd see that day that Concerned Women for America claimed Christians don't have the right to protest and exercise their religion.
  • Finally, behold Sean Hannity praising tea part activists as "Tim McVeigh wannabes" :

Right Wing Round-Up

Janet Porter Goes 9 for 9

You know how yesterday I was marveling at the fact that there it was seemingly impossible for any right-wing activist to be considered so radical that Republican members of Congress would refuse to be seen anywhere near them? 

Allow me to follow that up with this simple observation that, over her last nine radio program, Faith 2 Action's Janet Porter's has had nine different Republican members on Congress on as quests:

March 9 - Guest: U.S. Senator Mike Johanns (R-Nebraska)

March 10 - Guests: Senator John Barrasso (R-Wyoming)

March 16 - Guests: Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio)

March 17 - Guests: U.S. Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas)

March 18 - Guests: U.S. Rep. Todd Akin (R-Missouri) and U.S. Rep. Trent Franks (R-Arizona)

March 19 - Guests: U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minnesota) and Rep. Tom Price (R-Georgia)

Do I really need to recount all of the crazy things Porter has said?

And yet multiple Republican members of Congress have been making time to appear on her radio program on a regular basis. 

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