Education

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 2/15/11

Michele Bachmann

New Hampshire: Announces intention to visit New Hampshire at CPAC (Minnesota Independent, 2/14).

CPAC: Uses faulty tax math at her CPAC speech (WaPo, 2/11).

Health Care: Says that repealing reform law is “the driving motivation of my life” (RWW, 2/10).

Haley Barbour

Immigration: Lobbied for Mexico to support the extension of an “amnesty” program (Salon, 2/14).

Lobbying: Politico looks into conflicts of interest as Governor after lobbying for tobacco industry (Politico, 2/14).

Iowa: Plans to address a Republican fundraiser in Iowa on March 15 (The Note, 2/14).

Mitch Daniels

Tea Party: Rush Limbaugh thinks Daniels is trying “to discredit talk radio and the tea party movement” (Politico, 2/14).

CPAC: Speech on debt receives rave reviews from pundits, but Daniels wins just four percent of straw poll votes (Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, 2/14).

Education: Pushes dramatic school vouchers bill despite cuts to public education (Evansville Courier & Press, 2/13).

Jon Huntsman

Utah: The former Utah governor trails Romney among state’s Republicans (Desert News, 2/12).

2012: Hires staff for his leadership PAC (Politico, 2/11).

Mike Huckabee

Religious Right: Criticizes GOProud during CPAC controversy (GOP12, 2/11).

Poll: Leading Republican choice on who would make a good president (The Atlantic, 2/11).

Sarah Palin

Poll: Struggles in polls of early primary states (Politico, 2/14).

Budget: Uses phony data to critique Obama’s proposed budget (CBS News, 2/14).

PAC: Hires chief of staff for leadership PAC (CNN, 2/11).

Tim Pawlenty

Religious Right: Plans to attend Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition meeting in Iowa in March (Iowa Independent, 2/14).

Florida: Set to address Florida’s Republican state legislators (Florida Times Union, 2/11).

CPAC: Attacks President Obama as weak in CPAC speech (RWW, 2/11).

Mitt Romney

New Hampshire: Has support of 40% of New Hampshire GOP primary voters in WMUR Granite State poll (WMUR, 2/14).

Nevada: Meets with supporters in the early caucus state (LVRJ, 2/14).

Health Care: Massachusetts reform law continues to haunt Romney among conservatives (The Plum Line, 2/14).

Rick Santorum

Religious Right: Plans to attend Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition meeting in Iowa in March (Iowa Independent, 2/14).

Palin: Runs away from criticizing Palin after she calls him a “Neanderthal” (PoliticalWire, 2/10).

CPAC: Criticizes judiciary and defends social conservatism at CPAC (RWW, 2/10).

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 2/15/11

Michele Bachmann

New Hampshire: Announces intention to visit New Hampshire at CPAC (Minnesota Independent, 2/14).

CPAC: Uses faulty tax math at her CPAC speech (WaPo, 2/11).

Health Care: Says that repealing reform law is “the driving motivation of my life” (RWW, 2/10).

Haley Barbour

Immigration: Lobbied for Mexico to support the extension of an “amnesty” program (Salon, 2/14).

Lobbying: Politico looks into conflicts of interest as Governor after lobbying for tobacco industry (Politico, 2/14).

Iowa: Plans to address a Republican fundraiser in Iowa on March 15 (The Note, 2/14).

Mitch Daniels

Tea Party: Rush Limbaugh thinks Daniels is trying “to discredit talk radio and the tea party movement” (Politico, 2/14).

CPAC: Speech on debt receives rave reviews from pundits, but Daniels wins just four percent of straw poll votes (Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, 2/14).

Education: Pushes dramatic school vouchers bill despite cuts to public education (Evansville Courier & Press, 2/13).

Jon Huntsman

Utah: The former Utah governor trails Romney among state’s Republicans (Desert News, 2/12).

2012: Hires staff for his leadership PAC (Politico, 2/11).

Mike Huckabee

Religious Right: Criticizes GOProud during CPAC controversy (GOP12, 2/11).

Poll: Leading Republican choice on who would make a good president (The Atlantic, 2/11).

Sarah Palin

Poll: Struggles in polls of early primary states (Politico, 2/14).

Budget: Uses phony data to critique Obama’s proposed budget (CBS News, 2/14).

PAC: Hires chief of staff for leadership PAC (CNN, 2/11).

Tim Pawlenty

Religious Right: Plans to attend Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition meeting in Iowa in March (Iowa Independent, 2/14).

Florida: Set to address Florida’s Republican state legislators (Florida Times Union, 2/11).

CPAC: Attacks President Obama as weak in CPAC speech (RWW, 2/11).

Mitt Romney

New Hampshire: Has support of 40% of New Hampshire GOP primary voters in WMUR Granite State poll (WMUR, 2/14).

Nevada: Meets with supporters in the early caucus state (LVRJ, 2/14).

Health Care: Massachusetts reform law continues to haunt Romney among conservatives (The Plum Line, 2/14).

Rick Santorum

Religious Right: Plans to attend Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition meeting in Iowa in March (Iowa Independent, 2/14).

Palin: Runs away from criticizing Palin after she calls him a “Neanderthal” (PoliticalWire, 2/10).

CPAC: Criticizes judiciary and defends social conservatism at CPAC (RWW, 2/10).

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.

Horowitz: Teachers' Unions Leading the "Infiltration of Islamic Jihadist Doctrines Into Our K-12 School Systems"

After calling for conservative writer William Kristol to apologize for “demonizing Glenn Beck, who has done more to educate Americans about the unholy alliance between the secular left and the Islamic jihadists than anyone else,” David Horowitz is now railing against the purported “infiltration of Islamic Jihadist doctrines” in public schools. Horowitz was reacting to the latest right-wing outrage over a school district in Texas that “wanted students at selected schools to take Arabic language and culture classes as part of a federally funded grant,” a program “similar to the Spanish curriculum already in place in the district.” Ultimately, the school district put the Arabic language classes, which were to be “funded by a five-year, $1.3 million Foreign Language Assistance Program federal grant,” on hold.

But that hasn’t stopped Horowitz from speaking out. Horowitz, who has a long history of vilifying both Muslims and the public education system, is railing against the school district and teachers' unions as terrorist sympathizers who want to “indoctrinate students,” and claims that the Arab world contributed nothing to culture “except terror.” Horowitz tells the AFA’s OneNewsNow:

The DOE program identifies Arabic as "a language of the future." But David Horowitz, founder of the David Horowitz Freedom Center, says Arabic is now a language of the past.

"What has the Arab world contributed except terror?" he exclaims. "The theocratic, repressive Arabic states do no significant science, no significant arts and culture."

The political activist admits he is skeptical about the district's claim that the courses will be about language and culture, and not about the Islamic religion.

"We already have a lot of infiltration of Islamic jihadist doctrines into our K-12 school systems," he argues. "The teachers unions have ruined our K-12 schools. These unions are very left-wing and they encourage Palestinian terrorists to come to the school and indoctrinate students. So I'm not too happy about this news item."

Horowitz says if the Mansfield ISD really wanted to look at a "language of the future," they would teach their children Chinese.

Horowitz: Teachers' Unions Leading the "Infiltration of Islamic Jihadist Doctrines Into Our K-12 School Systems"

After calling for conservative writer William Kristol to apologize for “demonizing Glenn Beck, who has done more to educate Americans about the unholy alliance between the secular left and the Islamic jihadists than anyone else,” David Horowitz is now railing against the purported “infiltration of Islamic Jihadist doctrines” in public schools. Horowitz was reacting to the latest right-wing outrage over a school district in Texas that “wanted students at selected schools to take Arabic language and culture classes as part of a federally funded grant,” a program “similar to the Spanish curriculum already in place in the district.” Ultimately, the school district put the Arabic language classes, which were to be “funded by a five-year, $1.3 million Foreign Language Assistance Program federal grant,” on hold.

But that hasn’t stopped Horowitz from speaking out. Horowitz, who has a long history of vilifying both Muslims and the public education system, is railing against the school district and teachers' unions as terrorist sympathizers who want to “indoctrinate students,” and claims that the Arab world contributed nothing to culture “except terror.” Horowitz tells the AFA’s OneNewsNow:

The DOE program identifies Arabic as "a language of the future." But David Horowitz, founder of the David Horowitz Freedom Center, says Arabic is now a language of the past.

"What has the Arab world contributed except terror?" he exclaims. "The theocratic, repressive Arabic states do no significant science, no significant arts and culture."

The political activist admits he is skeptical about the district's claim that the courses will be about language and culture, and not about the Islamic religion.

"We already have a lot of infiltration of Islamic jihadist doctrines into our K-12 school systems," he argues. "The teachers unions have ruined our K-12 schools. These unions are very left-wing and they encourage Palestinian terrorists to come to the school and indoctrinate students. So I'm not too happy about this news item."

Horowitz says if the Mansfield ISD really wanted to look at a "language of the future," they would teach their children Chinese.

Religious Right Slams the Purportedly "Homosexual Message” of Anti-Bullying Efforts in California Schools

With greater awareness among policymakers about the problem of pervasive anti-gay bullying in schools, the Religious Right has stepped-up their efforts to misleadingly label anti-bullying policies as “homosexual propaganda.” Focus on the Family warned of “activists who want to promote homosexuality in kids,” David Barton dismissed accounts of bullying and condemned alleged “homosexual indoctrination,” and the Minnesota Family Council blamed the LGBT community for bullying by endorsing an “unhealthy lifestyle.”

Now, the California Family Council (CFC) is escalating its own attacks against anti-bullying initiatives in schools. The CFC is affiliated with Focus on the Family and was highly involved in the campaign to pass Proposition 8. The CFC is now turning its attention to combating what it calls the new “cause célèbre of homosexual activists,” implementing anti-harassment policies. The CFC’s Rebecca Burgoyne spoke to the American Family Association’s news service OneNewsNow about their work fighting anti-bullying policies under the guise of protecting free speech:

A pro-family activist is taking to task a prominent homosexual-rights group for camouflaging its true agenda behind the banner of "bullying" in public schools.

Rebecca Burgoyne, research analyst with California Family Council, tells OneNewsNow that children across The Golden State are being indoctrinated with a pro-homosexual message. She maintains that the Obama administration and homosexual lobbyists are advancing an agenda that silences religious speech and the rights of parents.

"For many years, maybe a decade or so, gay activists in California have been making a big to-do about 'bullying' because of sexual orientation -- or even perceived sexual orientation," she explains. And the term "bullying," she argues, has become the elementary-level word for "hate speech."

January 24-28 marked "No Name-Calling Week" in public schools across the nation -- a week-long observance designed for fifth- through eighth-grade and sponsored by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). While the observance claimed to be a week of educational and creative activities "designed to address bullying and end name-calling of all kinds," Burgoyne explains that the agenda behind it contains a decidedly pro-homosexual slant.

"Nobody wants a child to be bullied," she acknowledges. "Nobody wants a child to [be] hurt. Most people say 'Oh, great! We're teaching our children not to bully each other' -- which is a good thing. But it's being used instead to push the homosexual message."

In an article published on her group's website, Burgoyne notes that a young adult book featured during the week is The Misfits. The book, authored by an open homosexual, normalizes same-sex attraction, one character being an "openly homosexual seventh-grader who sees nothing wrong with being attracted to the boy who sits next to him in class."

The CFC research analyst contends that through such events as "No Name-Calling Week," homosexual activists are seeking to make same-sex attractions acceptable to young children -- while at the same time silencing the voice of other viewpoints.

Religious Right Slams the Purportedly "Homosexual Message” of Anti-Bullying Efforts in California Schools

With greater awareness among policymakers about the problem of pervasive anti-gay bullying in schools, the Religious Right has stepped-up their efforts to misleadingly label anti-bullying policies as “homosexual propaganda.” Focus on the Family warned of “activists who want to promote homosexuality in kids,” David Barton dismissed accounts of bullying and condemned alleged “homosexual indoctrination,” and the Minnesota Family Council blamed the LGBT community for bullying by endorsing an “unhealthy lifestyle.”

Now, the California Family Council (CFC) is escalating its own attacks against anti-bullying initiatives in schools. The CFC is affiliated with Focus on the Family and was highly involved in the campaign to pass Proposition 8. The CFC is now turning its attention to combating what it calls the new “cause célèbre of homosexual activists,” implementing anti-harassment policies. The CFC’s Rebecca Burgoyne spoke to the American Family Association’s news service OneNewsNow about their work fighting anti-bullying policies under the guise of protecting free speech:

A pro-family activist is taking to task a prominent homosexual-rights group for camouflaging its true agenda behind the banner of "bullying" in public schools.

Rebecca Burgoyne, research analyst with California Family Council, tells OneNewsNow that children across The Golden State are being indoctrinated with a pro-homosexual message. She maintains that the Obama administration and homosexual lobbyists are advancing an agenda that silences religious speech and the rights of parents.

"For many years, maybe a decade or so, gay activists in California have been making a big to-do about 'bullying' because of sexual orientation -- or even perceived sexual orientation," she explains. And the term "bullying," she argues, has become the elementary-level word for "hate speech."

January 24-28 marked "No Name-Calling Week" in public schools across the nation -- a week-long observance designed for fifth- through eighth-grade and sponsored by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). While the observance claimed to be a week of educational and creative activities "designed to address bullying and end name-calling of all kinds," Burgoyne explains that the agenda behind it contains a decidedly pro-homosexual slant.

"Nobody wants a child to be bullied," she acknowledges. "Nobody wants a child to [be] hurt. Most people say 'Oh, great! We're teaching our children not to bully each other' -- which is a good thing. But it's being used instead to push the homosexual message."

In an article published on her group's website, Burgoyne notes that a young adult book featured during the week is The Misfits. The book, authored by an open homosexual, normalizes same-sex attraction, one character being an "openly homosexual seventh-grader who sees nothing wrong with being attracted to the boy who sits next to him in class."

The CFC research analyst contends that through such events as "No Name-Calling Week," homosexual activists are seeking to make same-sex attractions acceptable to young children -- while at the same time silencing the voice of other viewpoints.

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.

Tea Party-Backed Senate Candidate Once Tried to End Scholarships for Minority Students

After Texas Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison announced her retirement after she was declared a top target of Tea Party activists, the race for the Republican nomination became even more crowded and contentious. Texas Railroad Commissioner Michael Williams immediately became a Tea Party sensation and last week resigned from the Railroad Commission in order to be a full-time candidate.

The American Spectator today features a glowing profile of Williams, saying that “something about him says ‘Don’t mess with Texas.’”

Williams even won the endorsement of Tea Party leader Sen. Jim DeMint, who’s Senate Conservatives Fund lifted a number of far-right candidates like Sharron Angle and Christine O’Donnell to victory in GOP primary contests.

But Williams first garnered the support of the Party’s far-right when he unsuccessfully tried to block scholarships for minority students when he worked at the Department of Education under President George H. W. Bush. The New York Times reported in 1990 that Williams caused uproar when he tried to prohibit “colleges and universities that receive Federal funds from offering scholarships designated for minority students.”

Michael L. Williams, the Education Department's Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, said yesterday that "race-exclusive" scholarships, or those based on ethnic origin, were discriminatory and therefore illegal.

College administrators and scholarship fund directors reacted with alarm, saying the decision could reverse decades of efforts to increase the enrollment of members of racial and ethnic minorities who have been historically underrepresented in colleges.

"We were shocked by this decision," said Richard F. Rosser, president of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, which represents 815 institutions. "We have been making enormous efforts to increase the numbers of minority students in our colleges and universities, and this has necessarily required a great deal of financial aid."

Neither Rosser nor anyone else contacted yesterday could say how many institutions, or what percentage of total financial aid to minority students, might be affected by the new enforcement policy. But the practice of setting aside money to attract qualified minority students and make college more affordable for them has been widespread for at least 20 years.

Ultimately, then-Secretary Lamar Alexander (now a Republican Senator from Tennessee) stopped Williams from implementing his policy, including his attempt to block the Fiesta Bowl from setting “aside $100,000 for a fund for minority scholarships.” As Williams happily notes in his campaign’s biography, he succeeded Clarence Thomas in his position at the Education Department.

In a Republican primary in Texas where each candidate has to demonstrate their right-wing credentials, Williams may try to use this case to his advantage.

Tea Party-Backed Senate Candidate Once Tried to End Scholarships for Minority Students

After Texas Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison announced her retirement after she was declared a top target of Tea Party activists, the race for the Republican nomination became even more crowded and contentious. Texas Railroad Commissioner Michael Williams immediately became a Tea Party sensation and last week resigned from the Railroad Commission in order to be a full-time candidate.

The American Spectator today features a glowing profile of Williams, saying that “something about him says ‘Don’t mess with Texas.’”

Williams even won the endorsement of Tea Party leader Sen. Jim DeMint, who’s Senate Conservatives Fund lifted a number of far-right candidates like Sharron Angle and Christine O’Donnell to victory in GOP primary contests.

But Williams first garnered the support of the Party’s far-right when he unsuccessfully tried to block scholarships for minority students when he worked at the Department of Education under President George H. W. Bush. The New York Times reported in 1990 that Williams caused uproar when he tried to prohibit “colleges and universities that receive Federal funds from offering scholarships designated for minority students.”

Michael L. Williams, the Education Department's Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, said yesterday that "race-exclusive" scholarships, or those based on ethnic origin, were discriminatory and therefore illegal.

College administrators and scholarship fund directors reacted with alarm, saying the decision could reverse decades of efforts to increase the enrollment of members of racial and ethnic minorities who have been historically underrepresented in colleges.

"We were shocked by this decision," said Richard F. Rosser, president of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, which represents 815 institutions. "We have been making enormous efforts to increase the numbers of minority students in our colleges and universities, and this has necessarily required a great deal of financial aid."

Neither Rosser nor anyone else contacted yesterday could say how many institutions, or what percentage of total financial aid to minority students, might be affected by the new enforcement policy. But the practice of setting aside money to attract qualified minority students and make college more affordable for them has been widespread for at least 20 years.

Ultimately, then-Secretary Lamar Alexander (now a Republican Senator from Tennessee) stopped Williams from implementing his policy, including his attempt to block the Fiesta Bowl from setting “aside $100,000 for a fund for minority scholarships.” As Williams happily notes in his campaign’s biography, he succeeded Clarence Thomas in his position at the Education Department.

In a Republican primary in Texas where each candidate has to demonstrate their right-wing credentials, Williams may try to use this case to his advantage.

GOP Takeover of the House Called “The Best Development for the Family in 2010”

The National Organization for Marriage embraced the World Congress of Families’ list of the “10 Best and Worst Developments for the Family in 2010,” which claims that the Republican victory in the midterm election was the "best development for the family" in 2010. The World Congress of Families is a militantly anti-gay organization that has spoken out against the purportedly-gay Teletubby Tinky-Winky and partners with other Religious Right groups such as Concerned Women for America, the Family Research Council, the American Family Association, Focus on the Family, the Alliance Defense Fund, and Peter LaBarbera’s Americans For Truth About Homosexuality. According to the list, the election of a Republican majority in the House of Representatives was the best development for families in 2010, along with moves towards anti-choice laws around the world. The WCF’s worst developments include: “Mexico City institutes same-sex marriage;” “repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell;” and “EU tries for stealth recognition of same-sex marriage,” which the group lumps together with issues such as prostitution and out-of-wedlock birth. Read the full list:

The 10 Best Developments are:

1. The U.S. elects a pro-family House of Representatives

2. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev begins discussion of his nation's demographic crisis

3. California voters reject marijuana legalization

4. Canadians refuse to legalize euthanasia

5. Spain holds huge pro-life rallies challenging expansion of abortion

6. U.K. plans to block children's access to Internet porn

7. Developing nation reject E.U. "sexual orientation" mandate

8. Regarding abortion, Europe preserves right of conscience for medical professionals

9. Hungary's new government considers pro-life/pro-marriage constitution and

10. U.N. members reject special rapporteur's recommendations on sexuality education.

Here are The 10 Worst Developments for the Family:

1. Ontario court tries to legalize prostitution in Canada

2. Mexico City institutes same-sex marriage

3. New Kenyan Constitution undermines right to life

4. Ted Turner calls for worldwide one-child policy

5. Hollywood is sexualizing teen girls

6. In U.S., high levels of out-of-wedlock birth among less educated

7. Repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell

8. Planned Parenthood says abortion and contraception are economic stimulus

9. Growing anti-Christian bigotry in Europe and

10. EU tries for stealth recognition of same-sex marriage.

GOP Takeover of the House Called “The Best Development for the Family in 2010”

The National Organization for Marriage embraced the World Congress of Families’ list of the “10 Best and Worst Developments for the Family in 2010,” which claims that the Republican victory in the midterm election was the "best development for the family" in 2010. The World Congress of Families is a militantly anti-gay organization that has spoken out against the purportedly-gay Teletubby Tinky-Winky and partners with other Religious Right groups such as Concerned Women for America, the Family Research Council, the American Family Association, Focus on the Family, the Alliance Defense Fund, and Peter LaBarbera’s Americans For Truth About Homosexuality. According to the list, the election of a Republican majority in the House of Representatives was the best development for families in 2010, along with moves towards anti-choice laws around the world. The WCF’s worst developments include: “Mexico City institutes same-sex marriage;” “repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell;” and “EU tries for stealth recognition of same-sex marriage,” which the group lumps together with issues such as prostitution and out-of-wedlock birth. Read the full list:

The 10 Best Developments are:

1. The U.S. elects a pro-family House of Representatives

2. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev begins discussion of his nation's demographic crisis

3. California voters reject marijuana legalization

4. Canadians refuse to legalize euthanasia

5. Spain holds huge pro-life rallies challenging expansion of abortion

6. U.K. plans to block children's access to Internet porn

7. Developing nation reject E.U. "sexual orientation" mandate

8. Regarding abortion, Europe preserves right of conscience for medical professionals

9. Hungary's new government considers pro-life/pro-marriage constitution and

10. U.N. members reject special rapporteur's recommendations on sexuality education.

Here are The 10 Worst Developments for the Family:

1. Ontario court tries to legalize prostitution in Canada

2. Mexico City institutes same-sex marriage

3. New Kenyan Constitution undermines right to life

4. Ted Turner calls for worldwide one-child policy

5. Hollywood is sexualizing teen girls

6. In U.S., high levels of out-of-wedlock birth among less educated

7. Repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell

8. Planned Parenthood says abortion and contraception are economic stimulus

9. Growing anti-Christian bigotry in Europe and

10. EU tries for stealth recognition of same-sex marriage.

Vanderbilt Maintains Policy, But Religious Right Declares Victory

The other day, we noted that the Alliance Defense Fund had filed a complaint against Vanderbilt University, falsely claiming that the university was "requiring nursing residents to participate in abortion procedures" when, in fact, it was merely requiring residents to agree to "provide compassionate care" to women who had or would be undergoing such procedures, not to participate in the actual procedure.

University spokespeople made that distinction quite clear, but the ADF didn't care and kept asserting that university was forcing students to perform abortions ... so Vanderbilt issued a clarification [PDF] in an attempt to clear up the ADF's intentional misrepresentation:

There has been some publicity in the media and on the Internet that reflects a misconception of Vanderbilt University’s policy and practice regarding health care providers (e.g., physicians, nurses and trainees) participating in the termination of a patient’s pregnancy. While Vanderbilt expects all health care providers, including nurses who participate in the Nurse Residency Program’s Women’s Health Track, to provide compassionate care to all patients, no health care provider is required to participate in a procedure terminating a pregnancy if such participation would be contrary to an individual’s religious beliefs or moral convictions.

So the policy is the same as it has always been, but you wouldn't know that from reading right-wing coverage of the clarification ... mainly because ADF continues to lie about it:

Vanderbilt University abandons illegal policy that forced nursing residents to sign abortion pledge

Vanderbilt University Wednesday modified its nurse residency application so that it no longer requires applicants to pledge that they will participate in abortion procedures. The university made the announcement in an e-mail to applicants one day after the Alliance Defense Fund filed a complaint with the Department of Health and Human Services.

“Christians and other pro-life members of the medical community shouldn’t be forced to participate in abortions to pursue their profession. That’s what federal law says, and that’s why Vanderbilt is doing the right thing in changing its policy and application,” said ADF Legal Counsel Matt Bowman. “We will be monitoring the situation to make sure the university continues to comply with the law. It’s ironic that Vanderbilt changed its policy one day after denying that it required the pledge.”

And, of course, the rest of the Right is blindly repeating ADF's spin, claiming Vanderbilt has dumpeddropped, backtracked, and backed down from the policy and "will no longer force its nursing students to assist with abortions."

Vanderbilt never did and nothing has changed, but the Religious Right is treating this entire charade as some sort of massive victory.

Vanderbilt Maintains Policy, But Religious Right Declares Victory

The other day, we noted that the Alliance Defense Fund had filed a complaint against Vanderbilt University, falsely claiming that the university was "requiring nursing residents to participate in abortion procedures" when, in fact, it was merely requiring residents to agree to "provide compassionate care" to women who had or would be undergoing such procedures, not to participate in the actual procedure.

University spokespeople made that distinction quite clear, but the ADF didn't care and kept asserting that university was forcing students to perform abortions ... so Vanderbilt issued a clarification [PDF] in an attempt to clear up the ADF's intentional misrepresentation:

There has been some publicity in the media and on the Internet that reflects a misconception of Vanderbilt University’s policy and practice regarding health care providers (e.g., physicians, nurses and trainees) participating in the termination of a patient’s pregnancy. While Vanderbilt expects all health care providers, including nurses who participate in the Nurse Residency Program’s Women’s Health Track, to provide compassionate care to all patients, no health care provider is required to participate in a procedure terminating a pregnancy if such participation would be contrary to an individual’s religious beliefs or moral convictions.

So the policy is the same as it has always been, but you wouldn't know that from reading right-wing coverage of the clarification ... mainly because ADF continues to lie about it:

Vanderbilt University abandons illegal policy that forced nursing residents to sign abortion pledge

Vanderbilt University Wednesday modified its nurse residency application so that it no longer requires applicants to pledge that they will participate in abortion procedures. The university made the announcement in an e-mail to applicants one day after the Alliance Defense Fund filed a complaint with the Department of Health and Human Services.

“Christians and other pro-life members of the medical community shouldn’t be forced to participate in abortions to pursue their profession. That’s what federal law says, and that’s why Vanderbilt is doing the right thing in changing its policy and application,” said ADF Legal Counsel Matt Bowman. “We will be monitoring the situation to make sure the university continues to comply with the law. It’s ironic that Vanderbilt changed its policy one day after denying that it required the pledge.”

And, of course, the rest of the Right is blindly repeating ADF's spin, claiming Vanderbilt has dumpeddropped, backtracked, and backed down from the policy and "will no longer force its nursing students to assist with abortions."

Vanderbilt never did and nothing has changed, but the Religious Right is treating this entire charade as some sort of massive victory.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 1/11/10

Michele Bachmann

PAC: Vast majority of MICHELE PAC money went to Iowa politicians or PACs (National Journal, 1/10).

Religious Right: Potential 2012 bid wins plaudits from Religious Right activists (RWW, 1/10).

Iowa: Speaks to Iowans for Tax Relief PAC in Des Moines on 1/21 (Iowans for Tax Relief PAC, 1/7).

Mitch Daniels

Indiana: Makes 7th State of the State address with emphasis on education (South Bend Tribune, 1/11).

CPAC: To address the Conservative Political Action Conference along with other 2012 prospects (Politico, 1/6).

Newt Gingrich

Religious Right: Invited to speak at the Freedom Federation’s Awakening 2011 along with other potential 2012 candidates (RWW, 1/10).

Iowa: Listed to address Iowa Renewable Fuels Association in Des Moines on Janurary 25th (Des Moines Register, 1/10).

Mike Huckabee

Iowa: New poll shows Huckabee on top with 24% support from Republicans (TPM, 1/10).

Poll: Gallup finds in nationwide poll that Huckabee has the highest favorable rating among potential GOP candidates (WSJ, 1/10).

Reproductive Rights: Scheduled to address anti-choice fundraise in Tennessee on February, 14th (Knoxville News Sentinel, 1/9).

Sarah Palin

Extremism: Faces torrent of criticism over "bullseye" map with target on Giffords's congressional district, defends herself to Glenn Beck (The Week & NYDN, 1/10).

Reality TV: Doesn't sign on for a second season of Sarah Palin's Alaska (Forbes, 1/10).

Tim Pawlenty

2012: Tells newspaper he is "seriously considering running for president" (St. Petersburg Times, 1/10).

Book: Memoir focuses on his faith, attacks on Obama (MN Public Radio, 1/8).

Palin: Calls Sarah Palin "a force of nature" (Mediaite, 1/7).

Mike Pence

Reproductive Rights: Introduces legislation to de-fund Planned Parenthood (Human Events, 1/10).

2012: Tells an Indiana Rotary Club that he will decide on future political plans by the end of January (The Republic, 1/10).

South Carolina: Keynote speaker for South Carolina’s America Conference (Politico, 1/4).

Mitt Romney

Foreign affairs: Met with Afghan leader Hamid Karzai as plan of tour of Afghanistan and Middle East (Boston Globe, 1/10).

Poll: Pew poll has Romney as most competitive candidate against Obama in Nevada (UPI, 1/10).

Rick Santorum

Religious Right: Speaks with group founded by right-wing activist Ovide Lamontagne (Granite Oath PAC, 1/10).

New Hampshire: Hires GOP Congressman Frank Guinta’s strategist as state director of his America’s Foundation PAC (Union Leader, 1/5).

GOP: Says Romney’s Massachusetts health care law will make it “very hard for us to nominate” him (National Journal, 1/4).

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.

Matt Barber Instructs LU Students In His Anti-Gay Ways

There are few "mainstream" Religious Right activists operating today who are as militantly anti-gay as Matt Barber - in fact, he owes his entire current career to the fact that he got fired for being anti-gay.

And so now, in addition to using his position as Director of Cultural Affairs with Liberty Counsel from which to launch his incessant anti-gay attacks, Barber is also an Associate Dean at the Jerry Falwell-founded Liberty Law School.

And if you were thinking that this might just be some sort of administrative position, rest assured that it is not and that Barber is actually imparting his anti-gays views to LU students as an instructor, as he explained to Peter LaBarbera:

LaBarbera: So you're teaching a class there. What's the class about, real quickly ...

Barber: Yeah, I designed the curriculum and it's really an answer to the homosexual activist courses that we see at Harvard and Yale and Georgetown and other places. They call their class "Sexual Orientation and The Law"[and] they're basically just classes in which they indoctrinate kids; it's pure homosexual propaganda.

I teach a class, I designed the curriculum, and I taught it for the first time in the fall semester of this year title "Sexual Behavior and The Law" because that's what it really is is behavior. And I actually delve into the truth about how we have arrived where we are in the law today, we address public policy issues, legal issues and so forth from a Judeo-Christian perspective and looking at our true legal history and the true history of public policy in this country.

And indeed, the LU course catalog [PDF] reveals that that is indeed the case:

LAW 765 Sexual Behavior and the Law

A survey of the relationship between various types of human sexual behavior and law, including employment law, education law, criminal law, family law, civil rights legislation, and the constitutional guarantees of equal protection and freedom of religion, speech, and association. The course will explore sexual behavior and notions of sexual morality through a biblical, historical, and anthropological prism and consider how the law, public policy, and culture approaches the sexual choice people make.

Blast From the Past: Remembering The May Day Prayer Rally

Yesterday, Alvin McEwen discovered that Theresa Cao, the Birther arrested for screaming "Help Us Jesus" during the reading of the Constitution in House of Representative, had also participated in the "May Day 2010 - A Cry To God" rally that Janet Porter organized last year (the one that ended up costing her her radio program):

This reminded me that we lost a lot of videos when our YouTube account was shut down last year and that might be a good idea to start reposting some of them - so why not start with videos from this rally like this compilation from the hour spent seeking "Repentance for the Mountain of Arts & Entertainment" during which Ted Baehr repented for the movie "The Runaways" with its sex, and drugs, and rock and roll, while others repented for Los Angeles and its role as the home of the pornography industry and eventually, Janet Porter repented for all the time and money Christians have given to an industry that hates God and prayed that Christians will gain control over the industry and take dominion until Christ return, which was followed by a woman from Minnesota who repented for her state having elected the first Muslim to Congress ... and then eventually God showed up:

And while I am at it, why not repost Peter LaBarbera's prayer of repentance for allowing "homosexual activists ... to fulfill their wicked plan of turning America's schools, public and sometimes private, into homosexuality promotion zones":

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Education Posts Archive

Brian Tashman, Friday 01/18/2013, 5:30pm
A new report put out by the Texas Freedom Network Education Fund reveals that in several public school classes on the impact of the Bible on history have found classes teaching from a right-wing, fundamentalist Christian standpoint. A Southern Methodist University religious studies professor Mark Chancey found instances of students learning a literal interpretation of the Bible, that the earth is approximately 6,000 years old and that Judaism is a “flawed and incomplete religion” with materials “designed to evangelize rather than provide an objective study of the Bible... MORE
Brian Tashman, Monday 01/14/2013, 1:50pm
After a chain email sparked rumors that Texas was “indoctrinating children with Islam” and anti-American views, the Irving school district launched an investigation. But the examination of the school curriculum, called CSCOPE, found that the charges were bogus. That didn’t stop WorldNetDaily, which often reads like an amalgam of erroneous chain emails, from running with the story. WND is out with a new article, “Obama Interested in ‘Allah-is-God’ Curriculum,” which claims the Obama administration is using CSCOPE as part of a plan to “nationalize... MORE
Brian Tashman, Friday 12/14/2012, 3:15pm
WorldNetDaily is pushing a story about supposed Islamic indoctrination in Texas based on a chain email literally days after a review of the curriculum by the Irving Independent School District found nothing of the sort. The school district launched the review because of the chain email set off rumors that schools were trying to convert students to Islam with overt and subliminal messages and the Boston Tea Party was portrayed as an act of terrorism. The review found that “Christianity got twice as much attention in the curriculum as any other religion” and that “The Red... MORE
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 12/12/2012, 2:15pm
Pacific Justice Institute president Brad Dacus warned today that if the Supreme Court overturns the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) then the U.S. will likely legalize polygamy and incest “as society continues to slip down that slippery slope.” While speaking to Jim Schneider of VCY America’s radio show Crosstalk, Dacus also agreed with George Will’s assessment that “quite literally, opposition to gay marriage is dying,” alleging that teachers unions and Hollywood have spearheaded the “indoctrination” of youth. Dacus: If the Supreme Court rules... MORE
Ariella, Wednesday 11/14/2012, 3:50pm
Fearing for the fate of our nation after the election, Pastor Kevin Swanson of Generations with Vision Ministry cautioned that socialism, homosexuality, the legalization of marijuana, and most of all, independent women will contribute to the destruction of America. Swanson emphasized that single women are “leading the charge toward socialism,” and that they have been conditioned to “think like feminists,” abandon relationships with their family and become utterly dependent on government. Women no longer seek security from their fathers and husbands, asserts Swanson,... MORE
Brian Tashman, Monday 11/05/2012, 12:50pm
Reisman: Sex-Ed Turns Children into Prostitutes and ‘Little Sexual Deviants’ Liberty Counsel’s Matt Barber has been promoting new claims by Judith Reisman, a fellow professor at Liberty University, that the Department of Health and Human Services may be breaking the law by actively “grooming” children for sex. Wonkette published quite the takedown of Barber’s column, noting that he and Reisman both glaringly distort Alfred Kinsey’s research. Reisman spoke to Janet Mefferd about the column, where she said that the HHS along with groups like Planned... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Wednesday 10/24/2012, 2:24pm
On "WallBuilders Live" today, David Barton and Rick Green were discussing the importance and benefits of school choice in terms of improved scholastic performance.  While making the case, Barton explained that during Glenn Beck's "Restoring Love" event earlier this year, WallBuilders was tasked with organizing volunteer opportunities for the thousands of attendees and one of the groups they partnered with was a church that had been asked to help improve the reading ability of local third grade students. And the reason this was so important, Barton explained, is... MORE