The Virginia Supreme Court has selected Republican nominee Sean Trende and Democratic nominee Bernard Grofman to be the two Special Masters who will work together to draw legislative and congressional map proposals for the court. Due to deep partisan splits, the Virginia Redistricting Commission failed to submit any maps by constitutionally-required deadlines, leaving the task to the Court.
In the order issued Friday, the Court wrote, “Though each was nominated by legislative leaders of a particular political party, the nominees — upon being appointed by this Court as Special Masters — shall serve as officers of the Court in a quasi-judicial capacity. Consequently, the Special Masters shall be neutral and shall not act as advocates or representatives of any political party. By accepting their appointment, the Special Masters warrant that they have no ‘conflicts of interest,’ Code § 30-399(F), that preclude them from prudently exercising independent judgment, dispassionately following the Court’s instructions, or objectively applying the governing decision-making criteria.”
Public education has been under the microscope lately, especially since many states shut down in-person learning last year during the COVID-19 pandemic. With children learning from home via technology, many parents had the chance to hear what their children’s teachers were saying—and they didn’t always like it. In fact, many were downright disturbed by what public schools were teaching their children.
Parents should not be forced to sit by and watch as their children get indoctrinated with progressive ideas they don’t agree with. Assuming it is legitimate for the government—that is, the taxpayers—to fund education, the government should distribute those funds directly to parents in the form of vouchers and allow them to choose where to educate their children. Not only would this allow for more choice in schools, but it would also reduce much of the conflict we are seeing today between parents and school boards across the country.
A common response to voucher proposals is that they would allow parents to use taxpayer dollars to send their children to private religious schools, thus violating separation of church and state. In other words, atheists and progressives argue that they should not have to financially support schools that teach students religious worldviews.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Moderna and Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccines for booster shot use for adults in the U.S., the agency announced Friday,
The announcement was made just two months after the FDA first rejected the White House’s plan to administer booster shots to all adults the week of Sept. 20. FDA Acting Commissioner Janet Woodcock approved the booster without holding the usual public meeting to review the data, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will meet Friday afternoon to discuss the authorization, according to the FDA press release.
“Throughout the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, the FDA has worked to make timely public health decisions as the pandemic evolves. COVID-19 vaccines have proven to be the best and highly effective defense against COVID-19,” Woodcock said in the press release.
The recent approval of Aduhelm, a drug that removes amyloid plaques from the brains of people with Alzheimer’s, is a reason for cautious celebration. Not just because it is the first new treatment approved in 17 years, but because it is the first piece of a complex puzzle that researchers are hot on the trail of solving.
Border Patrol agents encountered 129.7% more people at the southern border this year than last, according to new data published by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
The greatest number of encounters was in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas and the greatest percentage increase was in Yuma, Arizona.
Illegal border crossings have skyrocketed since President Joe Biden took office in January.
Vice President Kamala Harris met with Mexican President Andres Manuel López Obrador to discuss everything but the border, according to a Thursday press release.
Harris and Obrador didn’t appear to discuss the Biden administration’s pending implementation of former President Donald Trump’s Remain in Mexico program or other issues overwhelming U.S. border officials, such as increased migration to the country, according to the statement.
“Vice President Harris and President López Obrador agreed to continue working together to address the root causes of migration from Central America and the need for a regional approach to migration in the Western Hemisphere,” according to the press release.
New migrant campsites have sprung up around Mexico throughout 2021 as migrants have grown uncertain of whether they’ll be able to remain in the U.S., the Associated Press reported Thursday.
Camps are full of migrants, including many children and those who can’t apply for asylum in the U.S. because of Title 42 restrictions, who have to wait in Mexico as their cases proceed through U.S. immigration courts, according to the AP. Title 42 is a Trump-era public health order implemented in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that prevents some migrants from remaining in the U.S. while seeking asylum and allows border officials to rapidly expel most migrants from the country.
Hundreds of Mexican law enforcement officials raided an encampment in Tijuana and required migrants to register for credentials or evacuate the area on Oct. 28, the AP reported. The migrants who registered and stayed were soon surrounded by a mile of chain-link fence.
FRANKLIN — Quisha King, a former regional engagement coordinator for Black Voices for Trump, said she was once liberal, but the writings of conservative black economists Thomas Sowell and Walter Williams helped steer her on a different path. King said she her community had no prior access to Sowell or Williams.
Fight for Schools has filed a recall petition aimed at Loudoun County School Board Vice-Chair Atoosa Reaser. The petition cites her involvement in two controversial Facebook groups, alleges Reaser’s knowledge of an assault at Stone Bridge High School, and says she has limited First Amendment rights of speakers during public comment.
Fight for Schools Executive Director Ian Prior said in a press release, “As Vice-Chairwoman, Atoosa Reaser has been part of the leadership team that has overseen and personally contributed to a complete breakdown in trust between the community and the Loudoun County School Board. From violating open meetings law, to ignoring the school board’s code of conduct, to neglecting to keep our children safe, all in the name of politics, Reaser has failed to lead and collaborate with parents and teachers that want a quality, safe education that respects the diversity of thought and viewpoint of the parents and students in her district.”