health care

Eagle Forum Leader Tells Tea Partiers to "Buy More Guns!"

85-year-old Kitty Werthmann, president of South Dakota Eagle Forum, spoke at a New Jersey Tea Party rally this week. Werthmann grew up in Austria under Hitler’s regime, and felt the need to warn Americans about the horrors of socialism and the imminent doom we face under the leadership of Barack Obama. She explained the origin of the word “Nazi” (short for the German name of the National Socialist Workers Party) and punctuated each of her anecdotes with “That’s socialism!”

Werthmann said that Adolf Hitler spoke just like an American politician, and spoke ill of welfare, the nationalized health care system, and the employment of women, all leading up to a strange and sudden turn to militancy. In this video of her speech, at 28:15 she says:

When the people fear the government, that’s tyranny, but when the government fears the people, that’s you, the Tea Party. That’s liberty. Keep your guns. Keep your guns, and buy more guns!

Personhood Bill Flounders In Louisiana

In another stinging defeat for the burgeoning “personhood” movement, a Louisiana personhood bill which would ban all abortions was defeated in the state legislature. The legislation, sponsored by Republican State Rep. John LaBruzzo, was hailed by Personhood USA as one of their best chances to pass a personhood law this year.

Personhood legislation gives legal rights to zygotes, banning all abortion without exception along with procedures to treat problem pregnancies, certain forms of contraception, and even in-vitro fertilization. Incidentally, the federal Hyde Amendment, which bars federal funds for abortion procedures, was the rationale used by the bill’s opponents to table the measure to send it back to committee. Personhood USA lamented that “The Hyde Amendment had a chilling effect on prolife legislators.”

Personhood USA is still counting on Mississippi voters to pass a personhood amendment this November, a referendum backed by other Religious Right groups like the American Family Association and Liberty Counsel along with top Republican politicians. The Mississippi effort is led by a proponent of Christians creating their own separate, theocratic country in America. In 2006 and 2008, personhood amendments were overwhelmingly defeated in Colorado.

The Associated Press reports:

A Metairie lawmaker's attempt to force a direct challenge to the Roe v. Wade decision by banning abortion outright in Louisiana was derailed Wednesday to the House budget committee.

The 65-30 vote of the House to send Rep. John LaBruzzo's bill to the House Appropriations Committee could shelve the measure for the legislative session.

"This would basically defeat the bill by running out the clock," LaBruzzo said. Only two weeks remain in the legislative session. LaBruzzo is proposing to define a fetus as a person from the moment of conception, which would ban abortion entirely, in violation of current federal law. Anti-abortion groups are split on the worth of the idea.

Lawmakers who supported sending the bill to the Appropriations Committee cited the possibility it could jeopardize $4.5 billion in federal health care funding Louisiana receives for its Medicaid program. A financial analysis said the proposal would put Louisiana at odds with a 1976 federal law requiring Medicaid to cover abortion services to save the life of the mother or in cases of rape or incest. Rep. Jim Fannin, D-Jonesboro, chairman of the Appropriations Committee, pushed for the diversion of the bill.

"I am truly and completely opposed to abortion, but that's off the table," he said.

LaBruzzo, R-Metairie, disagreed with the financial analysis done by the Legislative Fiscal Office.

GOP Presidential Candidates Join Far-Right Group For Iowa Tea Party Bus Tour

According to the Des Moines Register, Republican presidential candidates Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Gary Johnson and Rick Santorum will take part in Iowa’s Tea Party Bus Tour. The bus tour is led by a coalition of right-wing groups: the Leadership Institute, FairTax Nation, and the American Principles Project’s affiliated groups, Preserve Innocence and American Principles in Action.

Founded by noted anti-gay activist Robert George, the group is also closely linked to the Manhattan Declaration and the National Organization for Marriage, which it worked with to defeat marriage equality in Maine. Thomas Peters, the APP’s communications director, even participated in a conference tied to the notoriously anti-Semitic Polish broadcaster Tadeusz Rydsyk of Radio Maryja.

The APP is best known for instigating the boycott of this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference due to its inclusion of GOProud, a group of gay conservatives, and rallied other Religious Right organizations to leave the summit.

Preserve Innocence is the APP’s education watchdog and is mainly a voice against comprehensive sex education and anti-bullying programs. The group outspokenly opposed the role of Kevin Jennings, the White House’s outgoing Assistant Secretary for the Department of Education’s Office of Safe & Drug Free Schools and the founder of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, asserting that his views represent a “moral atrocity”:

Kevin Jennings aggressively advocates using our schools to teach children—including young children—about homosexuality and homosexual practices. He is the author of a Foreword to a book called Queering Elementary Education, and as the former Director of GLSEN (the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Educational Network), he supports a radical agenda that includes bringing sexual liberationist teachings into public schools. That’s what he means by “queering” elementary education.

“Queering” our elementary schools means destroying the innocence of our children. Please help us to stop that moral atrocity from happening.

The APP also bizarrely claims that President Obama was establishing “death panels” and working with Planned Parenthood to encourage students to have abortions:

“There is a frightening disconnect between what American parents believe their children should be taught about sex and by whom, and the liberal, even promiscuous sex education the Obama administration wishes to inflict upon our children through Planned Parenthood”, stated Andy Blom, Executive Director of the American Principles Project and American Principles in Action. “But this goes beyond sex education. This is opening the doors of our schools and their health programs to the nation’s largest abortion provider.”



President Obama’s Health Care plan threatens babies through Government mandated, taxpayer funded abortion. It threatens parental rights, pre-teens and teenagers through Planned Parenthood SBHC sex indoctrination. It threatens the elderly and disabled through rationed health care and end-of-life “Death Panels.”

FRC: Pray To Defeat Marriage Equality, Anti-Bullying Initiatives

The Family Research Council has released new prayer targets, and the group is urging activists to pray to stop the New York state legislature from passing a marriage equality bill. The FRC insisted that activists should not only support opponents of marriage equality, but also pray that those who “seek to shred the fabric of our nation’s moral order be defeated in the next election!”

In addition, the group denounced a new effort by Health and Human Services chief Kathleen Sebelius that fights bullying and anti-gay discrimination. In a recent speech, Sebelius said that Cabinet departments were working together “to create ways to decrease bullying and to establish programs and ideas to aid victims” and said that her department will work to create “a health care system that understands the unique needs of LGBT adults and youth.” FRC, a leading opponent of anti-bullying policies which protect LGBT youth, called on activists to pray against “government efforts to promote harmful and sinful sexual practices among our youth and instead determine to stand courageously against these misguided efforts which can only lead to God's judgment!”

Next Tuesday, June 14 at Noon, Christian leaders from many denominations and non-denominations will meet on the steps of New York City Hall to rebut Mayor Bloomberg's call for same-sex "marriage." New York City Bishop Joseph Mattera says, if taken today, the bill would fail by 3-4 votes. But Mayor Bloomberg is using his bully pulpit as a bludgeon to influence legislators (see City Action Coalition, Bloomberg, Cuomo).

• May God give courage to New York's pro-marriage Senators. May they handily defeat this effort to overturn the natural order in this state and our nation. May God's New Yorkers arise to pray and stand! May the members of New York's legislature who blindly or intentionally seek to shred the fabric of our nation's moral order be defeated in the next election! (Ps 11:3; Eze 33:1-9; Mt 7:15; Rom 1:32; Eph 6:10-18; 1 Th 5:21-22)



Secretary Sebelius also announced creation of a new federal interagency taskforce to partner the Departments of HHS, Education, Agriculture, Defense, Interior and Justice to develop strategies and programs to fight bullying. She said the new national health law will make health care workers "culturally competent" to deal with LGBT patients and that HHS is working with the federal child welfare system to "place LGBT children in loving homes." Homosexual activist and Department of Education appointee Kevin Jennings served as moderator of the event. The U.S. Department of Education sponsored the summit. Take time to read the Christian Post coverage (see Christian Post).

• May God help us to not to "bully" anyone, but to graciously yet urgently speak the truth in love to young people who are hurting themselves with the "LGBT" lifestyle. May believers across America not be "bullied" by our government's efforts to promote harmful and sinful sexual practices among our youth and instead determine to stand courageously against these misguided efforts which can only lead to God's judgment! (Pr 28:4-5; Mt 5:44-45; 18:6; Acts 5:28-29; Eph 5:1-13)

At Ralph Reed Confab, Obama Portrayed as Enemy of Faith and Freedom

Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition gathering in Washington, D.C. this past weekend was essentially a relentless repetition of the GOP’s 2012 attack themes on the Obama administration, mixed with Religious Right leaders’ demands that the Tea Party not abandon social conservatives’ priorities and conservative politicos’ appeals for unity behind whichever candidate emerges from the presidential crowd.  Just about everyone running, or thinking about running, for the presidency on the Republican side was in attendance with the exception of Newt Gingrich.

One of the easiest, and most frequently used, ways to get applause at F&F was to pledge that Obama will be a one-term president.  Among the other major themes:
 
American Exceptionalism
 
Former Senator Rick Santorum, who officially announced his presidential bid this morning, said his campaign theme will be American exceptionalism.  Unfortunately, for Santorum, it seems that every Republican candidate is talking about American exceptionalism – and the claim that President Obama, Democrats, and “liberal elites” don’t believe that the U.S. is the God-ordained greatest nation in the history of the world – so it’s going to be hard to break away from the pack on that score.  Gary Bauer claimed that American elites don’t believe the words of the Declaration of Independence. 
 
‘Obamacare’ = Socialism = The End of Freedom
 
Many speakers cited health care reform as the ultimate example of the Democrats’ commitment to freedom-destroying socialism.  Carrie Severino of the Judicial Crisis Network said it was one example of progressives’ tendency to say “to hell with the Constitution” when it got in the way of their policy goals.  Rep. Allen West even attacked the notion of “shared sacrifice,” which he said was code for “redistribution of wealth,” which is how the right-wing looks at progressive taxation.  Rep. Tom Price, who clearly needs to spend some time studying American history, called the health care reform bill “the furthest reach of oppression that this society has ever seen.”  Others similarly insisted that the implementation of the law would mean the end of liberty in America.  Michele Bachman shouted, “I will not rest until we repeal Obamacare. America will not rest until we repeal Obamacare.”  Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli said the fight against Obamacare is just one sign that federalism is reemerging.  He argued that Americans need to understand that there is a “liberty pie” that does not grow – and it has only two slices, government power and individual liberty – and one necessarily grows at the expense of the other. 
 
America Needs More Religion (as long as it’s not Islam)
 
The FFC was long on Religious Right rhetoric on religion and politics.  The pastor who gave the opening prayer for the conference gave thanks for “a nation founded for the glory of God and the advancement of the Christian faith.”  The Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins exulted that it was good to be among folks who are “not ashamed to defend the Christian principles on which this nation was founded.”  The Republican National Committee’s Reince Priebus said America’s greatness is “rooted in our faith” and that “faith in our God, and faith in our savior” is “not a convenience, it is the foundation of a good life.” But Islam was clearly deemed a threat, with one participant telling a contentiouspanel on Sharia law that in Minnesota “we practically have a Muslim state.”  
 
Reproductive Rights and Gay Rights = Big Government
 
In the “Social Issues: Why They Still Matter” panel, John Fund of the Wall Street Journal discussed “the psychology of those who are trying to undermine the moral fiber of this country,” arguing that liberals are compelled by a lust for power and therefore need to “control people” and “lower standards of society as a whole.” Fund explained that “if you can lower standards” by permitting legal abortion and gay equality, then liberals can gain control over society, and insisted that “we have to bring back shaming” of women who had abortions because “we need to be judgmental about this issue, we need to call out people for the choices that they made, ‘shaming’ is not a bad word in this society.” On a separate panel, National Organization for Marriage founder Maggie Gallagher said, “When you redefine marriage, you also redefine the relationship between Genesis and the American tradition,” which would jeopardize freedom because “in some cases, the power of government is already being used to marginalize and stigmatize people who disagree with the foundational ideas of same-sex marriage.”
 
Obama as Enemy of Israel
 
Michele Bachman was one of several speakers who misportrayed recent Obama administration comments about Israel, calling them a “shocking display of betraying our greatest friend and ally.” One participant commented that “life, liberty, and Israel” were the elements that make up “the pursuit of happiness.” Jay Sekulow of the American Center for Law and Justice said Obama may soon be referring to Israel as “the Zionist regime” and Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission implied that Obama may bringing upon the country the curse of God for his policy towards Israel. Peter Roff of U.S. News and World Report lamented that “the American Jewish community is for some reason enamored of Democratic politicians in general and Barack Obama specifically.”
 
Unified Conservative Movement
 
FRC’s Perkins was among many Religious Right speakers who argued for keeping social conservatives’ priorities at the forefront of the movement in the name of conservative movement unity.  Perkins used a strange mixed metaphor, saying it is the “bottom of the ninth for our beloved country” and no time to lapse into an undisciplined orchestra, calling for a “rousing symphony” – drums of national defense, the horns of economic abundance, and the strings that bind a strong family.  Among others who sounded the same theme were Indiana gubernatorial candidate Mike Pence, who said, “we have to recognize that our present crisis is not just economic or political but moral in nature” and touted the importance of the sanctity of life, “traditional marriage,” and the importance of organized religion in our daily life.
 
Haley Barbour, one of the potential presidential candidates who decided not to run, devoted his remarks to lecturing attendees about the need to rally behind whichever candidate was nominated even though the nominee won’t be perfect.  “In politics,” he said, “purity is the enemy of victory.” Tony Blankley warned that the media and Democrats would love to “divide and conquer” the movement.
 
Advocating for social issues at the FFC was clearly preaching to the choir.  But some Tea Party activists were clearly annoyed by the “you’re nothing without us” attitude of Religious Right activists Jordan Sekulow and Matt Barber at a panel on the “Teavangelicals” that was moderated by the Christian Broadcasting Network’s David Brody.

Understanding Bryan Fischer's Audience

We are constantly writing about the steady stream of bigotry that flows from Bryan Fischer via his American Family Association blog and daily radio program, but it is important to remember that Fischer isn't just saying this stuff so in order to provide us with constant fodder for posts, but because he truly believes the things that he says and has an audience who believes such things as well.

Case in point was this caller from today's program who, in under a minute, managed to rail against the "Benedict Arnolds" who are preventing the majestic eagle that is America from flying because "communistic cancers" like the NAACP and ACLU are undermining it at every turn.  The only solution, of course, is for the military to "step up and start taking action":

This was then immediately followed by another caller who was terrified that Muslims were going to be exempt from the health care reform legislation but allowed to serve on the "death panels" that would determine what care Christians would receive ... and know just know how that would turn out.

FRC: Help Us Stop "The Forced Indoctrination Of Our Children By Homosexual Activists In Classrooms"

Tony Perkins is calling upon activists to donate to the Family Research Council’s political arm, FRC Action, in order to help stop “anti-family forces.” Perkins describes FRC’s work in trying to preserve the Defense of Marriage Act and stop marriage equality and the “forced indoctrination” of students. He also brags about the organization’s influence within the House GOP and warns of looming “death panels” as a result of the health care reform law. Later this year, FRC Action will host the 2011 Values Voter Summit, with GOP leaders like Rick Santorum, Eric Cantor, Ken Cuccinelli and Steve King, along with activists Mat Staver, William Boykin, Bill Bennett, Brent Bozell and Gary Bauer, already scheduled to speak.

Perkins writes to members:

Just days ago after Congressman Todd Akin (R-MO) successfully forced the Navy to do an about face on same-sex marriage on naval installations, he credited the FRC Action team for bringing attention to this unlawful directive.

This is just one example of the crucial work our team does day in and day out on Capitol Hill and in the media around the country.

So I hope friends like you respond to our need for funds. Pro-family members of Congress are depending on FRC Action like never before. We cannot do "less than enough" to support them. Here's why . . . Doing "less than enough" can mean America gets ObamaCare and "death panels" rather than compassionate health care from conception to natural death.

"Less than enough" can mean we get homosexual "marriage" and the forced indoctrination of our children by homosexual activists in classrooms.

"Less than enough" can mean we get an out-of-control Washington elite who keeps spending our children's money on bigger government and saddling them with a mountain of debt.

I know you're a pro-family champion who simply isn't willing to settle for "less than enough."

Newt: Worst Campaign Promise Ever?

“I know how to get the whole country to resemble Texas.”  

      Newt Gingrich on Sean Hannity, May 11, 2011
 
In his presidential campaign announcement on Sean Hannity’s Fox News Channel show, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich praised job creation in Texas and said he’d been talking to Texas governor Rick Perry and knows “how to get the whole country to resemble Texas.” That could go down as the worst campaign promise ever. 
 
“I dearly love the state of Texas,” the late Texan and progressive icon Molly Ivins wrote, “but I consider that a harmless perversion on my part, and discuss it only with consenting adults.” Noting that Texas was a state that provided relatively few services to its residents, she once wrote, “The only depressing part is that, unlike Mississippi, we can afford to do better. We just don’t.”  Maybe that should be the motto for Newt Gingrich and his fellow anti-government demagogues.
 
The impact of that governing philosophy is spreading a lot of pain in Texas right now. Nobel Prize-winning economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman wrote earlier this year:  
 
Texas is where the modern conservative theory of budgeting — the belief that you should never raise taxes under any circumstances, that you can always balance the budget by cutting wasteful spending — has been implemented most completely. If the theory can’t make it there, it can’t make it anywhere.
 
In fact, Texas lawmakers have been struggling all year to figure out how to deal with a massive budget deficit.  An AP story from March, headlined “Texas’ economic miracle beginning to tarnish,” noted that the state’s budget shortfall was “among the worst in the nation.” A temporary budget deal in March involving more than $1 billion in spending cuts still left the state $23 billion short over the next two years by one estimate. Proposed cuts could result in layoffs for 100,000 school employees and 60,000 nursing home workers and eliminate 9,600 state jobs this year. Just this week lawmakers struggled to reach agreement on a deal to close a $4 billion deficit in the current year, which ends in August.  
 
It is possible that entire crisis may have been manufactured by Perry and other anti-government Republicans to give lawmakers a justification for further slashing government and basic human services.
 
Does Newt think we really want the whole country to look like Texas, which ranks:
 
 50th in percentage of population without health insurance (2010)
 
50th  in percentage of children insured (2009)
 
50th  in percentage of women receiving early prenatal care (2010)
 
45th  in rate of infectious diseases (2010)
 
44th  in percentage of children in poverty (2010)
 
42nd  in per capita health care funding (2010)
 
40th  in overall health (2010)
 
36th  in high school graduation rate (2010)
 
35th  in crime (2010)
 
35th  in percentage of children immunized (2010)
 
34th  in rate of occupational fatalities (2010)
 
30th in percentage of people with college degree (2008)
 
Texas also ranks:
 
1st  in amount of recognized carcinogens released into the air (2002)
 
4th highest  in release of toxic chemicals into the environment (2002)
 
8th highest  in percentage of people below poverty level (2008)
 
13th highest  in obesity (2010)
 
“I know how to get the whole country to resemble Texas.”   Uh, thanks, Newt, but no thanks.
 

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 5/17/11

Michele Bachmann

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

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

Herman Cain

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

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

Mitch Daniels

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

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

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

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

Newt Gingrich

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

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

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

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

Jon Huntsman

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

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

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

Roy Moore

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

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

Sarah Palin

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

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

Tim Pawlenty

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

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

Mitt Romney

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

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

Rick Santorum

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

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

Boykin: Obama Creating Personal Brownshirt Army To Enforce Marxism

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Ken Cuccinelli Hosting Concerned Women For America Fundraiser

The Religious Right’s favorite Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli is the “honorary host” of a Virginia fundraiser for Concerned Women for America. Cuccinelli won plaudits from right-wing activists for using his Virginia post to challenge anti-discrimination protections based on sexual orientation, attack scientists who believe in climate change, undercut health care reform, and censor the official state seal over nudity.

It makes sense that Cuccinelli is hosting a fundraiser for a group which believes that health care reform violates the Ten Commandments, gays are discriminatory bullies who hate democracy, climate change science is a duplicitous effort to wreak havoc on the poor, and that President Obama wants communists to control America’s children.

Maybe when Cuccinelli is with the CWA leadership he can fulfill his law enforcement duties by asking them if they know kidnapper Lisa Miller’s whereabouts, seeing as the group was one of Miller’s most ardent advocates and offered clues that they know where she is.

But somehow I doubt it.

Right Wing Round-Up

Return of the "Death Panels": The Latest GOP Invective Against Health Care Reform

Republicans are back with more smear-ridden criticism of the new health care reform law’s attempt to streamline burgeoning Medicare costs, regenerating the discredited “death panel” smear. The law established the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) to replace the ineffectual Medicare Payment Advisory Commission and to “recommend policies to Congress to help Medicare provide better care at lower costs.” Even though the board is “specifically prohibited by law from recommending any policies that ration care” and its members and decisions are subject to congressional approval, the GOP has targeted the board as the latest “death panel.”

WorldNetDaily dubs IPAB the “ultimate ‘death panel’” and interviews Rep. Michael Burgess (R-TX), who alleges that the board “is going to be able to tell you what kind of care you can get, where and when you can get it and worst of all, when you've had enough”:

However, there's a new round of alarms developing over what critics have described as the ultimate "death panel," concerns that have been raised because Barack Obama himself suggested giving an already-unaccountable board more authority.



U.S. Rep. Michael Burgess, who has authored "Doctor in the House" on the issue of the nationalization of health care, said the IPAB was a bad idea when ex-Sen. Tom Daschle, D-S.D., proposed it before voters removed him from office, and it hasn't gotten better.

"Now for the first time ever the primary party for health care for seniors, Medicare, is going to be able to tell you what kind of care you can get, where and when you can get it and worst of all, when you've had enough," he told WND today.

"If all you're looking to do is be able to figure how to take care of old people cheaply, this is the way to go," he said. "If what you want to provide is meaningful medical care, why would you set up or embellish a system that leads to waiting lists and rationing?"

He cited Obama's recent comments, and said the board will become "the central command and control system" and the "primary tool" to limit, ration, reduce or restrict treatments.

Among other reactions was Stanley Kurtz at National Review Online, who followed Obama's vague references with an explanation.

"They're back. Rationing, death panels, socialism, all those nasty old words that helped bring Republicans victory in 2010 … They're back because of IPAB. Remember that acronym. It stands for The Independent Payment Advisory Board. IPAB is the real death panel, the true seat of rationing, and the royal road to health-care socialism.

Palin Teams Up With Right Wing Holy Warrior For "Tribute to the Troops"

If you are a regular reader of this blog, you are not doubt familiar with Jerry Boykin, the former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence under Donald Rumsfeld who retired after video emerged of him explaining that we were engaged in a spiritual war against Islam that the US would eventually win because our God was bigger than their God.

Since leaving the military, Boykin has joined up with self-proclaimed prophet Rick Joyner and become the Religious Right's resident "expert" on all things Islam and a leading member of the Religious Right's Spartan-like army. He is also the man who exposed the fact that President Obama is a Marxist who intends to use the health care reform legislation to build an army of Brownshirts loyal only to him:

So it only stands to reason that next month, Sarah Palin would share the stage with him at a "Tribute to the Troops" rally in Colorado:

Former Alaska Governor and 2008 GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin will speak at a May 2 fundraiser for veterans at Colorado Christian University in Lakewood, the school just announced.

Palin will be keynote speaker at "Tribute to the Troops with Sarah Palin" at the university in Lakewood.

Lt. Gen. William Boykin will also speak, and there will be appearances from representatives of all the military branches.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 4/26/11

Michele Bachmann

Media: Included in the Time 100 (Star Tribune, 4/21).

2012: Claims she will reach a decision on presidential bid by June (LA Times, 4/20). 

Haley Barbour

2012: Decides against running for president (Politico, 4/25). 

Newt Gingrich

Energy: Received $300,000 from ethanol lobbying group (Des Moines Register, 4/25).

Immigration: Balances outreach to Hispanic voters with GOP's increasing nativism (Politico, 4/22). 

Mike Huckabee

South Carolina: Leads other candidates among South Carolina Republicans in new poll (The Ticket, 4/25).

Media: War of words with Glenn Beck escalates (HuffPo, 4/22). 

2012: Former campaign manager predicts he will run (The Daily Beast, 4/21). 

Jon Huntsman

Foreign Affairs: Wins praise from Chinese leaders as he leaves post as Ambassador (Salt Lake Tribune, 4/21). 

Campaign: Hires prominent GOP pollster (Fox News, 4/20). 

Roy Moore

Iowa: Completes 27-stop tour in Iowa, focusing on religious voters (Iowa Republican, 4/22). 

Religious Right: Addresses militantly anti-gay Cornerstone World Outreach church (Sioux City Journal, 4/22) 

Sarah Palin

Alaska: 61% of home state voters view her unfavorably (Anchorage Daily News, 4/25). 

Family: Estranged ex-future-son-in-law Levi Johnston to write tell-all on Palin family (LA Times, 4/25). 

Religious Right: Set to speak alongside dominionist ex-General William Boykin (HuffPo, 4/25).

Iowa: Campaign in Iowa a one-man operation (WSJ, 4/22). 

Tim Pawlenty

Polls: Fails to increase support among GOP primary voters in polls (Minnesota Public Radio, 4/25). 

Environment: Former adviser and polar explorer disappointed with Pawlenty's move towards climate change denial (Mother Jones, 4/21). 

Mitt Romney

Budget: Wrongly claims that Obama is managing a "peacetime" budget in op-ed (Washington Monthly, 4/25).

Fundraising: Escalates fundraising to build campaign war chest (AP, 4/25). 

Rick Santorum

Equality: Doubles down on opposition to civil rights for gays and lesbians (Crooks and Liars, 4/25). 

Health care: Regrets voting for Medicare prescription drug benefit plan (HuffPo, 4/24). 

Iowa: Hires state campaign manager and field director before embarking on tour (Politico, 4/21). 

Donald Trump

Birther: Claims President Obama's birth certificate is either "missing" or "does not exist" (Daily Caller, 4/25). 

Voting: Has spotty voting record during primary elections (NY1, 4/23).

Barton: Obama Wants To Eliminate "In God We Trust"

With guest Rep. Randy Forbes (R-VA), pseudo-historian David Barton cast doubt on President Obama’s religious beliefs and maintained that he wants to take God out of government. Barton lauded a resolution championed by Forbes which reaffirms and encourages the existing motto “In God We Trust” and claimed that Obama is imposing a “secularist” agenda, adding that “when you forget that God is part of the equation, you will lose your prosperity, you will lose your rights, you will lose your stability.”

Barton, who believes that Obama has “a worldview that is devoid of God,” has previously (and erroneously) suggested that the President tried to suppress the phrase “endowed by their Creator.” Channeling many right-wing conspiracy theories, Barton now alleges that Obama wants to do the same with “In God We Trust.”

Along with co-host Rick Green, Barton tried to link Obama’s “secularist” views with his administration’s decision to end “conscience-protection” clauses, which allow health care workers to refuse medical care if they say it conflicts with their religious beliefs. According to Barton, the Bush-era medical regulations were supported by the Founders and their repeal shows that government is moving away from God:

Barton: I don’t care what Obama says about his faith. He says he’s a Christian, fine, lots of people say that. What I know for sure is that he’s a secularist. Because seven times he’s deliberately omitted the word ‘Creator’ when he said the Declaration of Independence, he said that national motto doesn’t have ‘In God We Trust.’

And so if you’re a secularist, then you believe rights come from government, which is why his administration right now is repealing conscience-protection. Now conscience-protection was considered by the Founders as an inalienable, God-given right. We’re the first nation in the world to protect the rights of conscience.

Green: And if it comes from God, government you can’t touch it and government should protect it.

Barton: That’s right. Government protects it. Well he’s saying, look, if you don’t want to perform abortions, you need to get out of the healthcare industry, you don’t have a right to be in healthcare industry, you don’t have a rights to you’re beliefs about abortion.

So all these conscience-protection regulations we’ve had are going away, but that makes sense if they didn’t come from God. And when you have a secular viewpoint—and that’s why it is so important to continue to preserve and fight for little bitty acknowledgments of God because it keeps reminding us that wait a minute, God’s part of our government, God is involved in our philosophy of government, God is part of what we have in our documents. We got to remember that. When you forget that, when you forget that God is part of the equation, you will lose your prosperity, you will lose your rights, you will lose your stability, you will lose all those things that have been at the base of that. So, this really is a big deal.

Beck Calls Huck "Progressive," Huck Calls Beck An Idiot

On his radio program yesterday, Glenn Beck called Mike Huckabee "progressive" for daring to support First Lady Michelle Obama's anti-obesity campaign.  Now, anyone who knows anything about Beck knows that for him, calling someone "progressive" is not a compliment.

And so today, Huckabee fired back and openly mocked Beck as an inept, delusional conspiracy theorist who has no idea what he is talking about:

This week Glenn Beck has taken to his radio show to attack me as a Progressive, which he has said is the same as a “cancer” and a “Nazi.” What did I do that apparently caused him to link me to a fatal disease and a form of government that murdered millions of innocent Jews? I had the audacity—not of hope—but the audacity to give respect to the efforts of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign to address childhood obesity. I’m no fan of her husband’s policies for sure, but I have appreciated her efforts that Beck misrepresented—either out of ignorance or out of a deliberate attempt to distort them to create yet another “boogey man” hiding in the closet that he and only he can see. The First Lady’s approach is about personal responsibility—not the government literally taking candy from a baby’s mouth. He seems to fancy himself a prophet of sorts for his linking so many people and events together to describe a massive global conspiracy for pretty much everything. Sadly, he seems equally inept at recognizing the obvious fact that children are increasingly obese and that we now see clinical evidence of diseases in children that as recent as 20 years ago were found only in adults, such as Type 2 diabetes. The costs to our nation are staggering in increase health care expenses, but it even effects national security with now 75% of young men between the ages of 17 and 24 are unfit for military service primarily due to obesity! His ridiculous claim that John McCain and I collaborated and conspired in the 2008 campaign is especially laughable. Is he not aware that McCain and I were competitors---not cohorts? Beck needs to stick to conspiracies that can’t be so easily de-bunked by facts. Why Beck has decided to aim his overloaded guns on me is beyond me. But he ought to clean his gun and point it more carefully lest it blow up in his face like it did this time.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 4/19/11

Michele Bachmann

Book: Considering a proposal to write her memoirs (AP, 4/18).

South Carolina: Rally in South Carolina a bust (CBS News, 4/18). 

Birther: Continues to float birther conspiracy on Fox News (The Atlantic, 4/18). 

Budget: Falsely claims that the top 1% pay 40% of taxes (PolitiFact, 4/13). 

Haley Barbour

South Carolina: Wins Charleston County GOP straw poll (The State Column, 4/18). 

New Hampshire: Takes two-day swing in New Hampshire (Boston Globe, 4/15). 

Mike Huckabee

South Carolina: Meets with supporters from the 2008 campaign (RCP, 4/18). 

Iowa: Volunteers from 2008 bid work to build new campaign (The Ticket, 4/15). 

Jon Huntsman

South Carolina: Organizes campaign in the Palmetto State (CNN, 4/18).

Obama: Conservative website features laudatory letters from Huntsman to Obama (Daily Caller, 4/15).

Roy Moore

2012: Forms presidential exploratory committee (AP, 4/18). 

Religious Right: Travels around Iowa with staffer from the far-right The Family Leader (Des Moines Register, 4/18). 

Sarah Palin

PAC: Launches new website for leadership pac (The Caucus, 4/18). 

Tea Party: Addresses small rally for Koch front group in Wisconsin (TPM, 4/16). 

Ron Paul

South Carolina: Tops the field in the Lexington County straw poll (CNN, 4/16). 

2012: Opens fundraising account for potential presidential bid (Politico, 4/14). 

Tim Pawlenty

Tea Party: Keynotes tea party rally in Boston, slams health care reform (Boston Globe, 4/16). 

Budget: Criticizes compromise budget deal (The Fix, 4/13). 

Mitt Romney

Florida: Leads in early poll of Sunshine State Republicans (Taunton Daily Gazette, 4/17). 

Fundraising: Benefits from network of state leadership PACs (Boston Globe, 4/15). 

Donald Trump

GOP: Presidential campaign gains increasing interest among Republican activists (AP, 4/19). 

Tea Party: Addresses Tea Party rally with Florida Congressman Allen West (The State Column, 4/17). 

Poll: Leads other likely candidates in poll of Republicans nationwide (WSJ, 4/15). 

Rick Santorum

Campaign: Rejects pro-union line of Langston Hughes he used as a campaign motto (The Guardian, 4/18). 

Equality: Supports reinstating Don't Ask Don't Tell policy (Think Progress, 4/18). 

Religious Right: Plans to join The Family Leader's Iowa presidential lecture tour (RWW, 4/18).

New Hampshire: Plays in mini golf tournament in Granite State tour (Foster's Daily Democrat, 4/17).

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 4/12/11

Michele Bachmann

Iowa: Slams marriage equality in speech to The Family Leader (Politico, 4/11).

Religious Right: Wins straw poll at Liberty University's The Awakening 2011 (Freedom Federation, 4/11). 

Budget: Refuses to endorse budget compromise (NPR, 4/11). 

Haley Barbour

Background: Experience as a lobbyist may make problems for campaign (AP, 4/12).

New Hampshire: Traveling to Republican events in New Hampshire this week (Boston Globe, 4/11).

Herman Cain

South Carolina: Talks about the "ultimate destruction of the IRS" at Furman University (CSBT, 4/9). 

Background: Discusses the role faith plays in his presidential ambitions (Christian Post, 4/8). 

Newt Gingrich

Georgia: Slated to address Georgia GOP convention (The State Column, 4/11).

Religious Right: Speaks to conservative leaders at Liberty University (Lynchburg News & Advance, 4/8). 

Minnesota: To deliver keynote address to anti-gay Minnesota group along with Bachmann (RWW, 4/11). 

Mike Huckabee

Reproductive Rights: Endorses Janet Porter's "Hearbeat Bill" (RWW, 4/11). 

Religious Right: Faces increasing scrutiny over ties to pseudo-historian David Barton (RWW, 4/7).

Jon Huntsman

Utah: Receives support of just fourteen percent of Republicans in home state of Utah (AP, 4/10). 

South Carolina: Selected to deliver commencement address to University of South Carolina (The Hill, 4/8). 

Sarah Palin

Birther: Lauds Donald Trump's "investigation" of Obama's birth certificate (Mediaite, 4/9). 

Poll: Popularity continues to plunge, even among Republicans (WaPo, 4/8). 

Tim Pawlenty

Campaign: Picks former head of the Republican Governors Association as campaign manager (Star Tribune, 4/11). 

Iowa: Campaign aide arrested for breaking into home while drunk (Des Moines Register, 4/8). 

Mitt Romney

Health Care: Marks fifth anniversary of Massachusetts health care reform law (RCP, 4/12). 

2012: Makes video announcement of exploratory committee (LA Times, 4/11). 

Rick Santorum

New Hampshire: Commits to June 7 presidential debate in New Hampshire (The Hill, 4/11). 

South Carolina: Wins straw poll in GOP-heavy Greenville County (Greenville Online, 4/10). 

Health Care: Says health care reform makes one "less than what God created you to be" (RWW, 4/8). 

Donald Trump

Religious Right: Speaks about faith to David Brody of CBN News (CBN News, 4/11). 

Media: Lashes out at Vanity Fair and the New York Times (Vanity Fair, 4/11).

Santorum: Health Care Reform Will Make You "Less Than What God Created You To Be"

Former Pennsylvania Senator and likely presidential candidate Rick Santroum continues court Republican activists around the country, and yesterday addressed a GOP fundraiser in Colorado. Santorum, who previously claimed that the recently passed health care reform law intends to “addict Americans on government healthcare,” not only likened guaranteed health insurance to drug dealing but also said that it would have grave spiritual implications. He went on to say that there is “statistical proof” of American exceptionalism and that Republicans must be “ready to battle for America’s soul”:

“Think about how they view you,” he told the crowd of Republicans. “They view you no different than the drug dealer views the little kid in the school yard. They want to get you hooked, they want to get you dependent. They want to get you relying upon them for your wellbeing. And once they’ve satisfied you, giving them that drug, that narcotic, then you’ll be reliant on them and, by the way, you’ll also be less than what God created you to be.”

The crowd thundered applause. Santorum talked about statistical proof of American exceptionalism — arguing that life expectancy didn’t increase for thousands of years until America was founded, and then it doubled in 200 years — but kept returning to the importance of next year’s election.

It’s not enough to preach to committed Republicans and conservatives, Santorum said. “You all need to go out and build your own choir, all over this state, so when 2012 rolls around, you are ready to battle for America’s soul. That’s what’s at stake.”

Next week, he plans to attend a gathering in New Hampshire hosted by the Granite State Liberty Patriots PAC and keynoted by Pastor Garrett Lear of the Well of Living Water Christian Ministries. A self-proclaimed “Patriot Pastor,” Lear says he is “one of the most active prolife, pro family, pro traditional marriage, original intent smaller government clergyman in New Hampshire and America” who “has openly challenged Christians all over America to withdraw their children from the government schools.”

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health care Posts Archive

Kyle Mantyla, Friday 10/14/2011, 4:37pm
The Los Angeles Times profiles the International House of Prayer.   Bryan Fischer says "our next president must understand that the more devout a Muslim becomes ... the more of a threat he becomes to the national security of the United States."   FRC defends the Protect Life Act, saying it simply "ensures that Americans who want health care insurance with abortion coverage or supplemental abortion coverage can purchase it, but not with federal dollars."   Richard Land is demanding the Pentagon reverse the policy of allowing... MORE
Peter Montgomery, Wednesday 10/12/2011, 10:04am
As RWW readers know, the Values Voter Summit, the year’s biggest political gathering for the Religious Right, took place in Washington, D.C. this past weekend.  Every Republican presidential candidate with the exception of Jon Huntsman addressed the summit, evidence of the continuing importance of Religious Right activists and political groups to the GOP. Polls suggest that the Religious Right is about twice as big as the Tea Party, with significant overlap between the two movements. Ron Paul’s campaign packed in enough voters to win the straw poll, but it would be wrong... MORE
Miranda Blue, Wednesday 10/05/2011, 10:20am
This weekend, nearly every major GOP presidential candidate, along with the top two Republicans in the House of Representatives, will speak at the Values Voter Summit, an annual gathering of the leaders of the movement to integrate fundamentalist Christianity and American politics. The candidates – Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich – and the congressmen – House Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor – will join a who’s who of the far Right at the event. The organizers of... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Friday 09/30/2011, 4:37pm
Disappointingly, Mike Huckabee is not considering entering the Republican presidential race. Glenn Beck is now targeting kids with a new children's show on his GBTV network. Bryan Fischer's latest conspiracy theory is about how President Obama wants the Supreme Court to strike down health care reform so that he can use it to win re-election. Shocklingly, FRC is not happy that military chaplains can now conduct same-sex marriage. On a related note, Elaine Donnelly says it is ridiculous for the military to recruit at gay venues. Finally, Liberty University... MORE
Brian Tashman, Monday 09/19/2011, 4:17pm
While in Amarillo, Texas, after his archdiocese recalled him from New York over allegations of financial mismanagement, Frank Pavone of Priests for Life is still making his voice heard. Pavone writes in his blog today that in the same way voters cannot find common ground with politicians that support terrorism, they can’t find common ground with pro-choice candidates: “When I preach – and help other priests to preach – the clear message that candidates and parties must defend life, some – including clergy – complain to me that my message hurts their... MORE
Peter Montgomery, Tuesday 08/09/2011, 11:13am
Casual viewers of “The Response,” including some political reporters who don’t pay a lot of attention to the Religious Right, may have watched Texas Governor Rick Perry’s prayer rally on Saturday and wondered what all the fuss was about.  Most of the time was taken up with prayer and praise music.  Few of the speakers seemed overtly political.  Nobody used the occasion to endorse Perry’s pending presidential bid. But context is everything, and the context for this event was remarkable: a governor launching a presidential bid by teaming up with... MORE
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 08/02/2011, 10:11am
Wendy Wright may be out of a job at Concerned Women for America. Once President and CEO of the powerful Religious Right organization, she appears to have been eclipsed by the new CEO Penny Young Nance. Now, Wright has been completely removed from CWA’s leadership page and her bio was taken down (you can still see her cached page). In fact, she is listed as “Past President, Concerned Women for America” on this new social conservative petition opposing government social services programs.   An outspoken opponent of evolution science, reproductive freedom and LGBT rights... MORE