Virginia will distribute $270,000 in farmland preservation grants to five localities, Gov. Ralph Northam’s office announced this week.
“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we have been reminded how important Virginia’s farms are to getting food into our stores and onto our tables,” Northam said in a statement. “In addition to being a vital part of our history, agriculture is central to our growing economy and maintaining the outstanding quality of life we enjoy in our Commonwealth. Partnering with local governments to preserve critical working landscapes and protect our abundant natural resources is key to maximizing the conservation impact of state funds.”
The commonwealth will use the Purchase of Development Rights programs to match local government funding to permanently preserve farmland. The program gives incentives to landowners who protect their working lands and it lets localities limit development on priority farm and forest land.
President Joe Biden’s new spending plan amps up rhetoric on national competition with China, maintaining the confrontational approach established by the previous administration. But whereas the 45th president championed what he called American energy dominance as a key element of grand strategy, the 46th seems bent on eschewing America’s natural resource advantages and playing to China’s strengths.
The White House fact sheet on the American Jobs Plan refers to China five times directly, claiming that the plan will “position the United States to out-compete China,” that China’s ambitions are one of “the great challenges of our time,” that the U.S. is “falling behind countries like China” on infrastructure, that “countries like China are investing aggressively in R&D,” and that the U.S. market share of plug-in electric vehicle (EV) sales is one-third of that in China — something President Biden “believes that must change.”
The president asserts that this plan will simultaneously reduce the risks posed by climate change and by China’s rise, but the evidence suggests his approach to energy will undermine the United States’ strategic positioning, not reinforce it.
Republican Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon has signed the Born Alive Act into law, legislation that requires doctors to care for babies born alive in botched abortions.
Senate File 34, which passed the Wyoming House 48-11, requires doctors to use “commonly accepted means of care” for “the treatment of any infant born alive.”
“Any physician performing an abortion shall take medically appropriate and reasonable steps to preserve the life and health of an infant born alive,” the legislation said. It will go into effect in July.
The National Basketball Association (NBA) confirmed in a letter to a member of Congress that it is in the midst of “ongoing business discussions” with a television network that is operated by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), as reported by the Washington Free Beacon.
In a letter sent to Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) on March 30th, NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum explained that the organization is negotiating with China Central Television (CCTV), which is the leading television network for CCP propaganda. Although the NBA has not yet finalized a deal for the 2021, Tatum said that an “active role” is being played in the negotiations by Michael Ma, the CEO of NBA China, whose father once served as a lead executive for CCTV’s sports division.
CCTV specializes in airing pro-CCP propaganda, including forced confessions of political dissidents such as journalists and human rights activists, while also negatively covering the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong by comparing them to the Islamic terror group ISIS. It has also described Chinese-run concentration camps for Uyghur Muslims as “vocational centers.”
When the inevitable assessments of President Biden’s first 100 days in office begin to appear, his precipitous actions pursuant to illegal immigration at the southern border will be judged by most honest observers to have been his worst blunder. That is certainly the perspective of the majority of Americans, according to three recent public opinion surveys. An NPR/Marist poll, for example, found that 53 percent of respondents disapproved of Biden’s handling of immigration. An ABC News/Ipsos poll found that 57 percent were dissatisfied with his management of the situation, particularly as it affects unaccompanied minors. An AP/NORC poll found that 56 percent were unhappy with Biden’s performance on immigration.
The gun control activist who President Joe Biden is expected to nominate to lead the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) claimed last year that members of the Branch Davidian sect shot down two helicopters during a standoff with federal agents in Waco in 1993.
David Chipman, the expected nominee, posted the comments as part of a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” event. He also called for tighter gun control measures, including restricting gun sales only to licensed gun stores and a ban on the manufacture and sale of so-called assault rifles.
Biden is expected to announce Chipman’s nomination on Thursday during an event where he will lay out a series of executive actions aimed at reducing gun violence.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) announced on Wednesday that Georgia is lifting all COVID-19 restrictions.
“We know hard-working Georgians cannot endure another year like that last. That is why beginning tomorrow we are loosening the remaining restrictions on our economy here in Georgia,” Kemp said in a video statement Wednesday.
Starting from Thursday, Georgia businesses will no longer be required to enforce social distancing, the ban on gatherings will be eliminated and the ability for authorities to shut down businesses that violate restrictions will be taken away, according to The Hill.
Crime is skyrocketing in cities where police departments have been defunded, crime statistics show.
Since career criminal George Floyd died in police custody in Minneapolis, last summer, many liberal city councils have voted to “defund” their police departments, allocating or redirecting municipal funds away from their police bureaus to other government agencies that serve “the community.”
More than 20 major cities have slashed their police budgets in some form, though the circumstances vary, according to Fox News.
Every year, the U.S. Congress holds an art competition for high school students sponsored by the Congressional Institute; winners are selected from each congressional district and their art is displayed in the Capitol for the next year.
“The Artistic Discovery Contest is an opportunity to recognize and encourage the artistic talent in the nation, as well as in our congressional district,” states an announcement from Representative Bobby Scott (D-VA-03).
Governor Ralph Northam endorsed his predecessor to be his successor. Gubernatorial candidate and former Governor Terry McAuliffe received Northam’s endorsement in a week with several key gubernatorial endorsements. On Thursday, the governor appeared with the former governor in Norfolk.
“We need a leader that can continue this progress. We need a leader that will bring us out of COVID-19, a leader that will help small businesses. A leader that will promote equity in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Terry McAuliffe will do that,” Northam said.