Tom DeLay: GOP Should Leave Supreme Court With Eight Justices Until A Republican Is Elected President
Earlier this week, former House GOP Leader Tom DeLay told radio host Steve Malzberg that if Hillary Clinton is elected president, Senate Republicans should continue to obstruct the judicial nominating process and simply refuse to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court.
DeLay, who has so far refused to endorse Donald Trump, tried to play down fears about the judicial nominations of a potential President Clinton by saying that if enough conservatives are elected to Congress, “it doesn’t matter who is president, the Senate can control” which judicial appointees get confirmed.
“There’s nothing in the Constitution that says you have to have nine justices,” he said. “We can go another four years with eight.”
Yesterday, American Family Radio host Bryan Fischer criticized the Republican National Convention for allowing Sajid Tarar of American Muslims for Trump to deliver a closing prayer on the second day of the convention.
“The Republican Party last night allowed a demonic power to be invited into its building,” he said.
Fischer said Republicans at the event “collectively committed the sin of idolatry” by observing the prayer and committed a “dangerous” act by inviting “a demon-God into its party.”
“Multiculturalism, ladies and gentlemen, is simply a six syllable words for cultural suicide,” he continued, pleading with the party to “clean up this mess” by asking a Christian preacher to pray over the event.
Today on “Breitbart News Daily,” reality TV star and conservative activist Phil Robertson spoke with radio host Stephen Bannon and Citizens United president David Bossie about the Republican National Convention, and Robertson urged listeners to rally behind Donald Trump.
The Duck Dynasty patriarch said that evangelicals must turn out and vote because they are facing “spiritual warfare” from “the depraved bunch, this political correct crowd” that is “of the Evil One.”
Robertson, an early supporter of Ted Cruz, said that Trump’s former rivals, including Cruz, must rally behind the business mogul, warning that “the alternative” to a Trump presidency is “depravity” and “moral bankruptcy.”
After falsely claiming that Democratic delegates “booed God” at their 2012 convention, Robertson said that a Democratic victory in November would cause him to go into hiding: “If the Republicans and the evangelicals do not get off their posteriors and vote, I think I’m going to head back to the woods and hide out.”
Yesterday on “The John Fredericks Show,” Arizona Republican state Sen. Kelli Ward, who is challenging Sen. John McCain in the state's GOP primary, claimed that the American government has “armed ISIS” and used over $1 billion to train and provide resources to the extremist group.
Ward called Hillary Clinton and McCain “two peas in a pod” when it comes to their “invade the world, invite the world” foreign policy.
“We have nation building abroad and we have open borders at home, we end up with terrorist attacks,” Ward said. “And what we’ve seen because we’ve armed ISIS – and I’m gonna put it right out there, the American government, John McCain, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, have armed ISIS. Even in this year’s National Defense Authorization Act, $1.3 billion put in there by John McCain to fund 'freedom fighters,' I’m putting it in air quotes, 'freedom fighters' in the Middle East, in Syria.
"And we did that before. We put in half a billion dollars – half a ‘b,’ billion, dollars – and we got four or five good rebels who fought for us, and the rest of that money, the rest of that training, the rest of those resources went into ISIS, and so now we’ve got bodies, we’ve got bodies from Benghazi to Orlando, and it’s all on the hands of the people who are in Washington, D.C., right now.”
The American Conservative Union Foundation hosted an event at the Republican National Convention on Tuesday, featuring panel discussions on whether conservatives will support Trump and whether the “imperial Obama presidency” can be reversed. It also included a surprise keynote speech from Donald Trump’s vice presidential pick, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.
Pence was introduced by NRA’s Chris Cox, who said that it is important for conservatives to win the culture war, because right now “everything that we’ve grown up knowing to be good, right and true has been twisted and perverted and repackaged to our kids as wrong.” Cox said the Second Amendment suffered a “devastating loss” with the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. “This is a critical time in American history,” he said. “It’s a critical time for constitutional freedoms.”
Pence’s appearance may have been a practice run of sorts for Wednesday night’s speech. He worked hard to convince attendees that they should feel good about supporting Trump, who Pence repeatedly called “this good man.”
Pence got applause with his first three words, “my fellow conservatives.” He described himself as “a Christian, a conservative and a Republican, in that order.” He gave a short political bio, taking about being inspired to run for office by Ronald Reagan, serving in Congress, and then returning to Indiana, where he has helped usher in the largest school voucher program in the country.
Pence bragged that his “strong Republican leadership” has achieved results in Indiana, “and that’s exactly the kind of strong Republican leadership Donald Trump will bring to the White House.”
Pence described Trump as a builder, a fighter, a father, and a patriot. He said after spending time with Trump, “I know that Donald Trump will be a great president of the United States of America because his heart beats with the heart of the American people.”
Pence compared Trump to Ronald Reagan, who he said “never lost the common touch.” He recalled a story about when, as a young congressional candidate, he met Reagan and said he was grateful for everything Reagan had done for the country. Reagan demurred, saying, “The American people decided to right the ship, and I was just the captain they decided to put on the bridge, and they did.”
Pence said he sees and hears in Donald Trump the same humility and unshakeable faith in the American people that he saw in Reagan.
Pence also had some direct words for those conservatives who have been resistant to Trump’s charms:
So the time has come for us to come together. The primaries are over. It was a big stage up there, with a lot of extraordinarily talented men and women. I say to my fellow conservatives today, it’s time for us to come together, time for us to come together around this good man and reelecting Republican majorities in the House and the Senate, because this is no ordinary time in the life of our nation…
We must decide here and now that Hillary Clinton will never become president of the United States of America…for the sake of a Supreme Court that will uphold the sanctity of life, our Second Amendment and our God-given liberties, we must elect Donald Trump as the 45th president of the United States of America.
- Marge Baker @ Other Words: Trump Isn’t the Only Republican with a Woman Problem.
- Paul Gordon @ PFAW: Pew Report: With GOP Presidents, We Get Fewer Judges of Color.
- Andrew Kaczynski @ BuzzFeed: Trump Vets Adviser: Clinton “Should Be Put In The Firing Line And Shot For Treason.”
- Eric Hananoki & Ben Dimiero @ Media Matters: Newt Gingrich’s Media Career Has Been Full Of Ethical Violations, Outrageous Comments, And Email Scams.
- Fred Kaplan @ Slate: Let’s Count the Lies in Christie’s Attack on Clinton.
- President Trump won’t oversee domestic or foreign policy because he will be in charge of “making America great again.”
- Christian Broadcasting Network reporter David Brody hails Donald Trump Jr. as “the GOP JFK Jr.”
- Pat Buchanan is thrilled that Donald Trump has dispensed with the “Bush idea of remaking America into a more ethnically, culturally, diverse nation through mass immigration, rooted in an egalitarian ideology.”
- Joseph Farah says if “black lives matter – and they surely do – the logical, rational, historical and practical course of action in 2016 is to vote Republican.”
- Phyllis Schlafly bravely declares that America is “the ‘land of the free and home of the brave.’ We don’t need to adopt Muslim policies.”
One theme of this year’s Republican National Convention is the Religious Right getting fully on board the Trump Train. Even before he vanquished Ted Cruz, his final primary opponent, Trump has been aggressively courting the Religious Right, and he has recently sought to shore up support from the movement leaders who backed Cruz and other candidates.
Yes, Trump is a habitual liar whose Bible-waving and political use of religious is transparently cynical, but that isn’t stopping Religious Right leaders from rallying around him. And why not? He allowed the Religious Right to write anti-gay discrimination into the GOP's platform. His promise to fill the Supreme Court with right-wing justices gives them hope that marriage equality in the U.S. will be short-lived. And he is even promising to overturn the federal law that forbids churches, like other tax-exempt nonprofits, from engaging in direct electoral politics, and to sign legislation defunding Planned Parenthood.
In Cleveland this week for the RNC, Religious Right political operative Ralph Reed spoke with Doug Wright, “Utah’s most listened to talk show host.” Polls show that many of Utah’s Mormon voters are resisting the call to unite behind Trump.
When asked why so many evangelicals are supporting Trump in spite of his “interesting” background, his use of “vulgarities,” and other things that might concern a conservative Christian, Reed said, “You’re not electing a pastor-in-chief, you’re electing a commander-in-chief.”
Reed reminded Wright that evangelicals backed Mitt Romney in the 2012 general election even though they had a different approach to faith, and even though Romney had previously held pro-choice and pro-gay views, something for which some conservatives have criticized Trump. “I thought we were members of a faith where we were supposed to welcome converts,” said Reed.
In fact, said Reed, he thinks Trump “has the potential to be the greatest advocate for our values, and do the most to advance that agenda, precisely because he doesn’t necessarily come from where we come from.” In other words, because people don’t view Trump as a Religious Right activist, they might be more receptive to his call for ending the ban on church politicking.
Here’s Reed’s basic case for Trump, starting with the fact that “he is a professing Christian.”
More importantly…he shares our values. He’s pro-life. He’s pro-traditional marriage, which is very important to us…He’s pro-religious freedom. He supported the Hobby Lobby Decision, supports Little Sisters of the Poor, has placed in the platform, at his insistence, at this convention, for the first time in the history of the Republican Party, a call for the repeal of the Johnson Amendment to the internal revenue code, which threatens churches that speak out politically with the loss of their tax-exempt status. That has been used to harass and persecute the Christian community for over half a century. Donald Trump will end it.
For eight years, Republicans have tried to delegitimize Barack Obama’s presidency, falsely claiming that Obama was born abroad and therefore ineligible to be president and that he only won two consecutive elections thanks to massive vote fraud.
This concerted disinformation campaign worked: Polls have shown that most Republican voters believe that the now defunct liberal group ACORN stole both elections for Obama and that the president was born outside of the U.S.
Donald Trump, now the GOP’s nominee for president, helped push these myths that paint the president as an illegal usurper who should have never been allowed to take office, while congressional Republicans have refused to treat Obama as a legitimate president.
Now, the GOP is determined to delegitimize a potential Hillary Clinton presidency, declaring that she would be serving time in jail if it weren't for a grand conspiracy between her campaign, the FBI and the Justice Department.
At last night’s meeting of the Republican National Convention, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie whipped the crowd into a frenzy as the audience repeatedly declared Clinton “guilty” of numerous crimes — including acting as “an apologist for an Al Qaeda affiliate” and negotiating “the worst nuclear arms deal in American history” — and shouted “Lock her up!”
Christie’s speech resembled a show trial more than a typical political address, promoting the message that has been propagated by Trump himself that Clinton should be in prison rather than running for president.
Ben Carson, who spoke later that evening, was more than happy to see that Christie transported Quicken Loans Arena to colonial Salem. The former presidential candidate once again attempted to connect Clinton to devil-worship because of her ties to the late activist and right-wing bogeyman Saul Alinsky:
One of the things that I have learned about Hillary Clinton is that one of her heroes, her mentors, was Saul Alinsky. Her senior thesis was about Saul Alinsky. This was someone that she greatly admired and that affected all of her philosophies subsequently. Now, interestingly enough, let me tell you something about Saul Alinsky. He wrote a book called “Rules For Radicals”.
On the dedication page, it acknowledges Lucifer, the original radical who gained his own kingdom. Now think about that. This is a nation where our founding document, the Declaration of Independence, talks about certain inalienable rights that come from our creator. This is a nation where our Pledge of Allegiance says we are “one nation, under God”. This is a nation where every coin in our pocket and every bill in our wallet says “In God We Trust”. So are we willing to elect someone as president who has as their role model somebody who acknowledges Lucifer? Think about that.
The secular progressive agenda is antithetical to the principles of the founding of this nation. If we continue to allow them to take God out of our lives, God will remove himself from us, we will not be blessed and our nation will go down the tubes and we will be responsible for that. We don’t want that to happen.
Clinton did in fact meet and exchange letters with Alinsky as a college student and even wrote a dissertation about his political ideas. But as the New York Times points out, while Clinton “endorsed Mr. Alinsky’s central critique of government antipoverty programs — that they tended to be too top-down and removed from the wishes of individuals,” she wanted to seek “change within the system” rather than through the outside agitation tactics championed by Alinsky.
And the relationship wasn’t exactly a secret: Clinton wrote about her time — and disagreements — with Alinsky in “Living History.”
On top of all of that, Alinsky’s ode to Lucifer was obviously not a call for Satanism but rather a figurative flourish, not that such a defense would stand up in a witch hunt.
As author Salman Rushdie noted, we shouldn’t “expect Ben Carson to recognize irony or humor.”
The Satanic Acknowledgment: This is Saul Alinsky on Lucifer. Can't expect Ben Carson to recognize irony or humor. pic.twitter.com/FYNY4gcgy7— Salman Rushdie (@SalmanRushdie) July 20, 2016
Since Monday night, the Trump campaign has been vociferously denying the very obvious fact that a section of Melania Trump’s speech to the Republican National Convention was plagiarized from a speech Michelle Obama delivered at the 2008 Democratic convention.
Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort said that he didn’t hear any plagiarism and insisted that Melania only used “fragments of words” similar to Obama's, while Trump spokeswoman Katrina Pierson seemed to raise doubts about the very concept of plagiarism entirely, claiming that those who observed plagiarism in Melania's speech must think that “Michelle Obama invented the English language.”
RNC strategist Sean Spicer, for his part, said that there was just as good a chance that Melania Trump's words came from the My Little Pony character Twilight Sparkle than from the First Lady.
None of this is surprising, as Donald Trump himself often doubles down on outright lies even after they have been thoroughly debunked.
But what is surprising is that the campaign eventually released a statement today from a speechwriter admitting that she plagiarized from Michelle Obama, albeit inadvertently. (Never mind that Melania had previously said that she “ wrote [the speech] with as little help as possible.”)
We wonder if Manafort will continue to insist that the plagiarism was a creation of the Clinton campaign.
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