- Heidi Beirich & Mark Potok @ Hatewatch: The CNP: Behind the Curtain.
- Sharon Kann @ Media Matters: Columbia Journalism Review Dismantles Daleiden’s Claim That He’s A Journalist.
- Sam Reisman @ Mediaite: Sam Bee Takes Us Through the Rise and Fall of the Religious Right.
- Matthew Yglesias @ Vox: Melania Trump on her husband: "He's not Hitler."
- Warren Throckmorton: Wallbuilders Live: David Barton is America’s Premier Historian.
- David and Jason Benham will receive the 2016 "National Heroes of Faith Award" from Vision America in September, while their father, Flip, will recieve the "Don Wildmon Pastor Award."
- Alex Jones says that "Glenn Beck is a Benedict Arnold, he is a sleeper cell."
- Scott Lively calls Christians to battle: "Let’s help the populists defend national sovereignty and defeat the Cultural Marxists, AND be fully prepared to reoccupy the positions of cultural influence that the Marxists stole from us as they are pushed back across the cultural battlefield — similar to the way the Russian Orthodox Church under Putin has re-claimed the positions of cultural influence in the Russian Federation from the Soviet Communists."
- TeaParty.org wonders if Michelle Obama is transgender: "It would explain a lot."
- Finally, David Lane identifies the problem and the only solution: "Cannot secularists recognize what Secularism has done to America? Freedom is endangered. Secularists have imported destruction on America ... What do we do? Prayer must be re-established in our churches. We must beseech King Jesus to return to public education, higher learning and the public square in America."
A central element of conservative conspiracy theories spread in the aftermath of the September 11, 2012 attack on our diplomatic facility and CIA annex in Benghazi, Libya, has been the myth that the military could have responded to the attack more quickly and therefore saved lives.
In the most outlandish version of this story, President Obama or Hillary Clinton ordered the military to “stand down” rather than come to the aid of the Americans who were under attack.
Earlier this week, a letter from two House Democrats to Rep. Trey Gowdy, the South Carolina Republican who is chairing the select committee investigating the Benghazi attack, revealed that the GOP’s own chief investigator acknowledged during the investigation that nothing “could have been done differently to affect the outcome in Benghazi.”
In an interview on Fox News today, Gowdy responded to this newly released information by acknowledging, “Whether or not they could have gotten there in time, I don’t think there is any issue with respect to that — they couldn’t.”
This conclusion is in line with the findings of previous Benghazi investigations. For example, after the House Armed Services Committee completed its investigation of the attack, Buck McKeon, the California Republican who was then the committee’s chairman, told reporters, “I think I've pretty well been satisfied that given where the troops were, how quickly the thing all happened and how quickly it dissipated, we probably couldn't have done more than we did.”
After spending more than two years and $6.9 million asking questions that have already been thoroughly answered, it is time for this investigation to conclude. At a minimum, those who propagated lies about the military’s ability to respond that night should now apologize.
Last week, televangelist Jim Bakker chatted with survivalist Steve Quayle as part of an End-Times-themed program called “The Days of Noah are Almost Upon Us,” and asked Quayle why he believes Donald Trump has been so successful in the GOP presidential contest.
Quayle declared that God is using Trump to reveal the sins of America, and that the Bible may even speak about the business mogul when it mentions the word “trumpet.”
“I believe God is using Donald Trump, whether you like him or hate him, I believe God is using him to trumpet the nature of what America believes and, in essence, we believe a lie,” he said. “‘Trump’ [sic] is in two times in the New Testament, ‘the last trump [sic] of God.’ The thing that’s fascinating for me is that God has used him as a prosecuting attorney to show the political sins of this country.”
For years, we have been covering the attacks that anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist Frank Gaffney has been leveling against Grover Norquist, a fellow conservative activist who has referred to Gaffney as his “stalker.”
Indeed, Gaffney has launched a very personal battle against Norquist, accusing the Americans for Tax Reform leader of helping the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamist terrorist groups infiltrate the conservative movement. These attacks, which often invoke the fact that Norquist is married to a Muslim-American woman, have been demonstrated to be completely unfounded.
Gaffney has recruited other conservative leaders into his fight, including commentator Glenn Beck and Family Research Council official Jerry Boykin, and was involved in a campaign to get Norquist thrown off the board of the National Rifle Association.
Gaffney claims that he “saw terrorists in [Norquist’s] office space” and uses guilt-by-association logic to tie Norquist to all sorts of unsavory figures through the anti-tax activists outreach to Muslim voters on behalf of conservative causes. Recently, Beck tweeted a scandalous photo of Norquist and his wife “palling around with Keith Ellison,” a Muslim Democratic congressman from Minnesota who, according to the Beck’s tweet, is tied to the Muslim Brotherhood and wants to “put thousands of prison converts to jihad on the streets.” Naturally, as one source of this “information,” Beck cited Gaffney’s group, the Center for Security Policy.
However, the recall vote against Norquist failed, representing a major rebuke to Gaffney’s efforts.
“The recall was simply the most recent nonsense from Frank Gaffney—my stalker of the last 17 years. The NRA membership defeated his effort last April and again this year,” Norquist said.
Now that the NRA members have kept Norquist on its board and rejected the message from Gaffney and others, it is clear that Gaffney, using his own connect-the-dots/guilt-by-association logic, is involved in the Muslim Brotherhood:
- Frank Gaffney was a senior adviser to Ted Cruz
- Ted Cruz has spoken several times at NRA events and praised the group.
- The NRA board includes Grover Norquist.
- Norquist is, according to Gaffney, a Muslim Brotherhood agent.
- Therefore, Gaffney is tied to the Muslim Brotherhood!
While obviously it is patently absurd to suggest that Gaffney (or Norquist, for that matter) is a Muslim Brotherhood agent, his connect-the-dots logic works both ways, and can even be used against Gaffney himself.
Last year, when anti-tax activist Grover Norquist was up for re-election for a seat on the National Rifle Association's board of directors, Glenn Beck threatened to cancel his lifetime membership in the organization if Norquist retained his position. Insisting that Norquist was a front man for the Muslim Brotherhood, Beck declared that Norquist "is a very bad influence and a very bad man [and] if this is who the NRA decides to put on their board of directors, I don't think I can be associated with them."
Following Beck's threat, NRA president Wayne LaPierre reached out to Beck and promised that the organization would launch an investigation into Norquist that would be fully transparent and the results of which would be posted on the NRA website for all to see in order "to get to the bottom of this once and for all."
A year passed and the NRA investigation, whose results were never made public, reportedly found that the allegations against Norquist were without merit, which prompted Beck to switch course and throw his support behind a recall effort to remove Norquist from the board via a vote of NRA members.
For the last few months, Beck has used his radio and television shows to continue to make the case against Norquist and urge his audience members to vote to remove him from the NRA because he is a dangerous, deep-cover agent for Islamic radicals.
The deadline for votes to be submitted was May 1 and the results have now been tallied and, according to Paul Bedard of The Washington Examiner, Beck's crusade has failed:
A left field attempt to paint the nation's No. 1 tax foe as a closet Muslim radical was tossed in the trash this weekend when National Rifle Association members voted to reject a recall effort of board member Grover Norquist pushed by his foes led by radio ranter Glenn Beck.
"I greatly appreciate the strong support the NRA membership and the entire Second Amendment community provided in defeating the recall effort," Norquist, founder of Americans for Tax Reform, told Secrets.
Pointing a finger at a champion of the recall effort, he added, "The recall was simply the most recent nonsense from Frank Gaffney—my stalker of the last 17 years. The NRA membership defeated his effort last April and again this year."
Elected to the board six times, Norquist found support among top NRA officials and key former government officials like former Reagan-era Attorney General Ed Meese and former Bush Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff.
In an email to Secrets, Todd Rathner, an NRA board of director, said, "I was confident the membership of the NRA would see this recall vote for what it was, an attack on the NRA in a year when we must be focused on critical elections. With the Supreme Court hanging in the balance, I am glad this petty distraction is behind us."
And Alan Gottlieb, executive vice president of the Second Amendment Foundation, said, "Grover Norquist is a great asset to the gun rights movement. It was important to the cause of freedom that he won this unjustified recall effort."
Confirmation of his victory came just one week before the annual NRA Convention, taking place in Louisville, Ky., beginning Friday.
Given that Beck had warned that the effort to remove Norquist from the NRA was the last chance to stop him and that Beck had also publicly stated that he could not be a part of the NRA if Norquist was allowed to remain on the board, the only option he seems to have now is to stand by his principles and resign from the NRA.
Update: Predictably, Beck is already backing away from his threat to quit the NRA, saying on his radio program today that leaving would only weaken the organization and so he must "hold the line" and continue to "duke it out."
"What are you going to do, unplug from everything?" he asked. "Do you just unplug? Or do you stay in and pitch? I don't think we can unplug. I think that is a really bad idea, to unplug."
Robert Jeffress, the pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas, praised his state’s leaders yesterday for refusing to comply with an Obama administration directive on facilities access for trans students in public schools, saying that “it’s time for an all-out rebellion against this absolute tyranny of the Obama administration.” He added that business interests pressuring lawmakers not to enact anti-LGBT measures are a greater “threat to freedom of religion in America” than ISIS.
Jeffress, a key Religious Right ally to Donald Trump, discussed the topic yesterday with Fox News commentator Todd Starnes, who was guest-hosting the Family Research Council’s “Washington Watch” program.
Jeffress said that the U.S. needed to admit that “we are a country based on the Judeo-Christian foundation, and whether you’re Jewish or Christian, I mean, we believe that gender is something that is assigned by God.”
Recognition of transgender rights, he said, means that “we are headed toward chaos,” adding that “at the root of this is society’s rebellion against the plan of God, that’s what this is all about.”
Jeffress and Starnes praised Texas officials’ resistance to the administration’s directive, with Jeffress noting that Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick “often” worships at his church when he’s in Dallas.
“I think they’re going to stand firm on this and I hope that every governor of every state will have the guts to do that,” Jeffress said. “I think it’s time for an all-out rebellion against this absolute tyranny of the Obama administration.”
When Starnes noted that Mississippi has announced that it will comply with the administration guidelines, Jeffress laid the blame on the Chamber of Commerce and business interests, which he said were a greater threat to American liberties than ISIS.
“It comes down to money, Todd, that’s what it’s about,” he said. “And when states are being faced with the loss of business, they tend to fold real quickly. And I’ve said often that the greatest threat to freedom of religion in America is not ISIS, it’s the Chamber of Commerce. I mean, it’s the businesses that say to our representatives, ‘Oh, don’t pass laws like that, don’t pass these religious freedom laws because people will interpret that as anti-gay and we’ll lose business.’”
InfoWars broadcaster and Donald Trump ally Alex Jones is back to claiming that First Lady Michelle Obama is secretly a transgender woman, but this time he’s adding a new twist to his conspiracy theory: that Obama had comedienne Joan Rivers killed after she joked about the first lady being trans.
Jones told his listeners yesterday that he’s seen enough videos on the internet to substantiate the rumor.
“The national media takes it when I talk about this and acts like I’m crazy,” he said. “Listen, there’s hundreds of millions views on YouTube.” (There are also millions of views on videos claiming that Obama and other leaders are shapeshifting reptilian humanoids, another conspiracy promoted by Jones.)
He went on to say that the first lady acts like she’s “god” and that the president wants schools to “teach five-year-olds how to be trannies.”
“Don’t forget,” Jones said, “the famous comedienne Joan Rivers said, ‘Of course everyone knows she’s a tranny.’ She’s dead serious, ‘She’s a man.’ Deader than a doornail in a routine operation where basically she had fire poured down her throat and was a fire-breathing goblin. Dead on arrival. Shoot your mouth off, honey, you will die.”
Jones didn’t stop there.
“I really think — her daughters don’t look like her — I really think this is some weird hoax they did again,” he said, “just like he didn’t get sworn in on the Bible, it was the Quran. All this weirdness, I mean, I used to laugh at this stuff, but man, it’s all about rubbing our noses in it. I think it’s all an arranged marriage, it’s all completely fake and it’s this big sick joke because he’s obsessed with transgender, just like some weird cult or something. I think Michelle Obama is a man. I really do. I really do. I believe it.”
- Elliot Mincberg @ PFAW: Supreme Court Punts in Zubik Case – and Shows Again the Crucial Importance of a Fully-Staffed Supreme Court.
- Jose Medina @ Texas Freedom Network: Patrick Calls Transgender Student Rights Debate a ‘Come and Take It Moment.’
- Sara Jerde @ TPM: Ted Cruz Flirts With Running Again In Emotional Campaign Closer.
- Alex Griswold @ Mediaite: In Shocking Turn of Events, Breitbart Story Turns Out To Be Complete BS.
- Laurel Raymond @ Think Progress: Very Classy Donald Trump Challenges London’s New Mayor To An IQ Test.
- Zack Kopplin @ The Daily Beast: School Teaching Creationism With Video From Islamic Sex Cult.
- Donald Trump once admitted to posing as his own spokesman, “John Miller,” but is now denying it.
- We hope Ben Carson is right and that Trump is seriously considering Sarah Palin to be his running mate.
- Roger Stone hopes President Trump will “turn off” CNN’s “FCC license.”
- Arizona taxpayers “have already fronted more than $41 million in [a] class-action suit against” Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was recently held in civil contempt, and may need to contribute “$13 million more toward the legal costs in the racial profiling case against” him.
- David and Jason Benham lament that America is experiencing “total lawlessness and a meltdown of civil society.”
- Chuck Norris says Harriet Tubman was not “some secular progressive or liberal Democrat waiting for her entitlements” but a symbol of “freedom from all forms of oppression and tyranny by the federal government, including the ginormous national debt that is suppressing future generations and us.”
John Hagee: God Will Hold You Accountable For Not Voting For Donald Trump
5/18/16 @ 12:15pm
Trey Gowdy Concedes: The Military Could Not Have Gotten To Benghazi In Time To Save Lives
5/17/16 @ 3:12pm
Alex Jones: 'Michelle Obama Is A Man' Who Murdered Joan Rivers To Cover It Up
5/17/16 @ 9:51am
'Michelle Obama Is A Transvestite! Why Can't People Get The Facts?'
5/16/16 @ 3:45pm
Franklin Graham: Gays And Lesbians Leading A Wicked, Evil Agenda Taking America Down
5/13/16 @ 12:25pm