Budget Watchdogs Project Democrats Infrastructure Plans to Cost up to $5.5 Trillion – $2 Trillion More Than Advertised

President Joe Biden

The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget has estimated that President Biden’s infrastructure proposals will cost up to $2 trillion more than Democrats are projecting.

The White House and Democratic congressional leaders are preparing a $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill that includes policies in Biden’s Build Back Better agenda such as universal pre-K, tuition-free community college and financial support for childcare. Democrats have referred to the reconciliation bill has a “human infrastructure” budget bill. It could also include the creation of a Civilian Climate Corps.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer have said they won’t pass a separate, bipartisan $1.2 trillion physical infrastructure framework until a filibuster-proof reconciliation spending bill gets passed.

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Democrats Introduce Bill Holding Tech Companies Liable for ‘Health Misinformation’

Amy Klobuchar and Ben Ray Luján

Senate Democrats introduced legislation Thursday removing liability protections from online platforms that promote content deemed health misinformation.

The bill, proposed by Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Ben Ray Lujan on Thursday, seeks to carve out an exception from Section 230 liability shields enjoyed by online platforms, such as Facebook or YouTube, if those platforms boost content classified as health misinformation, Vox first reported.

The legislation, known as the Health Misinformation Act, directs the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to create a definition of health misinformation, and strips liability protections from platforms “if the provider promotes that health misinformation through an algorithm used by the provider.” HHS defined health misinformation in an advisory last week as “information that is false, inaccurate, or misleading according to the best available evidence.”

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Bipartisan Trio Joins Forces in an Attempt to Claw Back War Powers from President

Bernie Sanders, Chris Murphy and Mike Lee (U.S. Senators)

A bipartisan Senate trio is seeking to reassert Congress’ control over war authorizations and military power.

Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee and Democratic Sens. Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Chris Murphy of Connecticut introduced the National Security Powers Act Tuesday, hoping to clamp down on presidential war powers that have expanded in recent years under presidents of both parties.

The bill requires the president to end foreign hostilities if they are not approved by Congress 20 days after they begin and cuts off funding if a president continues to act without congressional authorization. It gives Congress authority over weapons sales and allows it to prohibit the sale of weapons at its discretion, after former President Donald Trump irked lawmakers with his repeated sales to Middle Eastern allies like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

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Fauci Emails with World Health Organization Officials Heavily Redacted in Records Release

Dr. Anthony Fauci

The Department of Health and Human Services delivered 311 pages of heavily redacted emails Dr. Anthony Fauci and the World Health Organization and other documents regarding COVID-19 to Judicial Watch and the Daily Caller News Foundation, according to a press release Tuesday.

The redacted documents included personal edits from Fauci on COVID-related funding measures, which were redacted under a trade secrets exemption, Judicial Watch said in the press release.

“The American people have every right to know key information on our government’s role in Covid,” DCNF President Neil Patel said in the statement Tuesday. “This sort of hiding, dodging and stonewalling is one reason why trust in national authorities is near all-time lows.”

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House Republicans Launch ‘Freedom from Big Tech Caucus’

Ken Buck and Lance Gooden

Republican Reps. Ken Buck and Lance Gooden announced Friday the launch of the Freedom from Big Tech Caucus, a group of House Republicans working towards reining in major tech companies.

The caucus will focus on addressing anticompetitive and monopolistic practices by major tech companies, political censorship, and Big Tech’s relationship with China, Buck and Gooden announced in a statement. The caucus will also include Reps. Madison Cawthorn, Burgess Owens, and Paul Gosar, according to the announcement.

“Big Tech has abused its market power for decades, and Congress must act to hold these companies accountable and preserve the free market, promote competition and innovation, protect the freedom of speech, and foster a thriving digital economy,” Buck said in the statement.

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New Poll Spells Bad News for Progressives in High-Profile Ohio Special Election

Shontel Brown and Nina Turner

Nina Turner and Shontel Brown, the two leading Democrats vying to fill a House seat that includes Cleveland, are tied with 33% support, a new poll shows.

The Aug. 3 special election will likely determine who will succeed Housing Secretary Marcia Fudge, who resigned the seat after getting confirmed in March. Though Turner, a close ally of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, entered the race as an overwhelming favorite, Democrats seeking a moderate alternative have lined up behind Brown in recent weeks.

Brown has been endorsed by House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, Hillary Clinton, the Congressional Black Caucus and other high-profile members of the Democratic establishment, while Turner has the support of the “Squad” and other progressives.

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Federal Bill Would Ban Vaccine Database in Response to Biden’s ‘Door-to-Door’ Pledge

Ted Cruz

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, introduced a bill that would prohibit the federal government from creating and maintaining a federal database of every American who has received COVID-19 vaccines.

Cruz introduced the bill after White House officials announced a plan to use taxpayer dollars to pay individuals to go door-to-door in regions of the country where there are relatively low vaccination rates.

In response to statements made by President Joe Biden and White House press secretary Jen Psaki about the door-to-door outreach initiative, Cruz tweeted, “When the Biden admin calls for ‘targeted’ ‘door-to-door outreach’ to get people vaccinated, it comes across as a g-man saying: ‘We know you’re unvaccinated, let’s talk, comrade.’ My bill to ban federal vaccine passports prohibits the feds from maintaining a vaccine database.”

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15 Governors Oppose Biden Plan to ‘Conserve’ 30 Percent of All US Land and Water by 2030

Scenery of the mountains and waterways in Asheville, North Carolina

Governors from 15 states are sounding the alarm over an executive order issued by President Joe Biden tasking his administration to “conserve” 30% of all land and water in the U.S. by 2030.

Known as the “30 x 30 plan,” the directive is part of a United Nations Agenda 2030 land and sustainable development goal, which directs nations to conserve land and water to combat climate change.

Biden refers to the policy as part of the United State’s acceptance of rejoining the Paris Agreement, a deal former President Donald Trump pulled out of.

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Border Patrol’s Fentanyl Seizures Increase by 4,000 Percent Amid Crisis, Officials Say

Twitter post that states "Officers at #CBPLaredo remain at the forefront of border security operations to protect the public of lethal narcotics, as seen in this seizure of fentanyl worth $384K."

Border officials seized 4,000% more fentanyl in 2021 than in 2018 as the border crisis continues, NBC News reported Tuesday.

Cartels have taken advantage of increased federal resources allocated for migrant encounters to smuggle fentanyl into the U.S. between ports of entry, according to NBC News. Border officials have found 41 pounds of fentanyl in fiscal year 2021, compared with nine pounds in 2020, two pounds in 2019 and one pound in 2018.

“For the first time, we’re starting to see these tactics where fentanyl is being smuggled between ports of entry,” Chief Border Patrol Agent Gloria Chavez said, NBC News reported. “Cartels are very creative. They find ways to intimidate migrants and find ways to illegally have them transport that narcotic into the United States.”

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Commentary: Researchers Urge Americans to Focus on Loneliness Epidemic

Woman sitting in a chair, looking out the window, alone

As the pandemic recedes and Americans re-enter public life, the surgeon general and other public health experts are urging the country to focus on another national crisis, one that has lingered for decades and worsened in recent years: loneliness.

For many, pandemic-related lockdowns, social distancing, and physical isolation resulted in their most severe experiences of loneliness. Studies have shown that an uptick in loneliness and other mental health issues coincided with the pandemic, and that lockdown requirements almost certainly exacerbated pre-existing mental conditions. But for researchers who have studied loneliness, the recent increase is only one notable event in an extensive history.

Loneliness is not just a crisis in America, but also in Europe, Canada, Japan, China, Australia and, increasingly, South America and Africa. Loneliness also occurs regardless of race, class, culture, and religion. Even before the lockdowns, tens of millions of people throughout the world felt isolated.

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New Virginia Law Fines People $25 for Releasing Balloons

toy balloons

A Virginia law that went into effect Thursday makes releasing balloons illegal.

Individuals who are 16 years old and older who release balloons in the state will now be fined $25, according to a summary of the law. In the case where someone below the age of 16 releases a balloon “at the instruction of an adult,” the adult will be fined.

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Biden Plan to Eliminate Suburb-Friendly Zoning Might Land in Dems’ Budget Bill

Housing development

President Joe Biden’s plan to “eliminate exclusionary zoning” for single-family homes in America’s cities and towns might land in the filibuster-proof budget bill that Democratic leaders in Congress are drafting.

A portion of President Biden’s $2.3 trillion American Jobs Plan offers grants to cities that “take concrete steps” to end “exclusionary zoning” for single-family homes.

Under a section titled “Eliminate exclusionary zoning and harmful land use policies,” Biden’s jobs plan argues that “for decades, exclusionary zoning laws — like minimum lot sizes, mandatory parking requirements, and prohibitions on multifamily housing — have inflated housing and construction costs and locked families out of areas with more opportunities.”

According to the White House fact sheet on the plan, which has not been formally drafted into legislation yet, Biden is “calling on Congress to enact an innovative, new competitive grant program that awards flexible and attractive funding to jurisdictions that take concrete steps to eliminate such needless barriers to producing affordable housing.”

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House Passes Resolution Creating Select Committee into Capitol Riot

The House approved a resolution Wednesday to create a select committee into the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol weeks after Senate Republicans killed a bipartisan commission into it.

The bill authorizes House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to select eight members and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to select five in consultation with her. It passed 222 to 190, with two Republicans joining all Democrats in voting in favor.

Though the bill passed with bipartisan support, it was significantly less than the 35 House Republicans who voted for the bipartisan commission in May. House Republican leadership came out against the bill Tuesday, urging its caucus to vote no on the grounds that it would “pursue a partisan agenda and politicize the Jan. 6 attack.”

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Supreme Court Hands Union Loss in California Trespass Case

The Supreme Court has ruled that a California regulation allowing union organizers to trespass on private property to recruit agricultural workers violated private property rights.

In Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid released Wednesday, California agriculture businesses Cedar Point Nursery and Fowler Packing Company challenged a state law allowing labor unions a “right to take access” to an agricultural employer’s private property three hours per day, 120 days per year to recruit new union members. The court held that this constitutes a “per se” taking. They reversed and remanded prior rulings on California’s access regulation with a 6-3 vote, the dissenting votes belonging to the court’s three left-leaning justices. 

In 2015, union organizers entered Cedar Point Nursery at 5 a.m., disrupting work during harvest season with bullhorns to convince the farm employees to join the United Farm Workers (UFW) union. Mike Fahner, the owner of the strawberry farm, did not grant the union workers permission to enter his property, nor was he given notice of their arrival. He was not legally allowed to ask the union organizers to leave his property. 

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U.S. Supreme Court Sides with Student in Free Speech Case

Tennessee Star

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of free speech rights for students outside of the classroom in a decision Wednesday.

The court sided with former Mahanoy Area High School student and cheerleader Brandi Levy in the case, formally known as Mahanoy Area School District v B.L., with a 8-1 decision in her favor. Mahanoy Area High School is located in Pennsylvania.

Levy, upset that she had not made her school’s varsity cheer team, posted on the social media site Snapchat a simple message with explicit language expressing her frustration.

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‘Deeply Problematic’: Biden Land Management Nominee Tracy Stone-Manning Received Favorable Loan from Wealthy Developer Two Years After Helping Him Secure Development Deal

President Joe Biden’s nominee to lead the Bureau of Land Management helped a wealthy land developer secure county approval to build a neighborhood subdivision in 2006. Two years later, while working as a staffer for Democratic Sen. Jon Tester of Montana, the nominee received a below-market rate personal loan from the same developer.

The nominee, Tracy Stone-Manning, reported in her financial disclosure that in 2020 she paid off a $50,000 to $100,000 personal loan she had received from the Montana land developer, Stuart Goldberg, in 2008 at a 6% interest rate, which was about half the going rate of a personal loan at the time, according to federal reserve data. The American Accountability Foundation, a conservative watchdog group, said the terms of the loan raised “serious questions” about whether it constituted an “impermissible gift” to Stone-Manning in violation of Senate ethics rules.

Amid questions about the loan during her confirmation hearing in June, Stone-Manning described Goldberg as a friend who stepped in to help her family during the 2008 financial crisis.

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Whistleblower Document Appears to Show Microsoft Helped Write Big Tech Bills

Screencap of meeting. Mr. Tiffany speaking

Microsoft was given an advance copy of major antitrust legislation, a document given to Republican Rep. Thomas Massie by a whistleblower appeared to show.

The document is the original version of the Platform Competition and Opportunity Act, one of Democrats’ six pending antitrust bills targeting Big Tech, according to Rep. Thomas Massie. Every page of the document, which the Daily Caller News Foundation obtained on Wednesday, is watermarked with the text “CONFIDENTIAL – Microsoft.”

“I just came into possession of a document that everyone needs to know about,” Massie said during the Judiciary Committee markup of the legislation on Wednesday. “It’s marked ‘CONFIDENTIAL – Microsoft.’ A whistleblower provided this. It’s the first draft of one of these bills that would’ve covered Microsoft. This begs the question: did Microsoft have this bill and the other bills that we are voting on today before I had this bill?”

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Michigan Senate Report Concludes Mailing of Unsolicited Ballot Applications Poses Risk of Fraud

Republican lawmakers in Michigan released a report Wednesday concluding there was no widespread fraud in the state’s November election, debunking many speculations, but they pointedly warned that the mailing of unsolicited absentee ballot applications creates “a clear vulnerability for fraud that may be undetected.”

“The serious, potential outcomes of these vulnerabilities versus the minor effort to request an application make a strong and compelling necessity to not provide such applications without a request from a voter – as was standard practice until this past year,” the Michigan Senate Oversight Committee concluded. “Therefore, the committee recommends the Michigan secretary of state discontinue the practice of mailing out unsolicited applications.”

The committee also recommended that the state strengthen voter ID requirements, not weaken them like Democrats in Congress have proposed, as the practice of absentee or not-in-person voting grows.

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Louisiana Governor Vetoes Bill Banning Biological Males from Women’s Sports

John Bel Edwards

Democratic Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards vetoed a bill Tuesday that would have banned biological males from women’s sports.

“As I have said repeatedly when asked about this bill, discrimination is not a Louisiana value, and this bill was a solution in search of a problem that simply does not exist in Louisiana,” the governor said in a statement, according to the Associated Press, adding that “even the author of the bill acknowledged throughout the legislative session that there wasn’t a single case where this was an issue” in Louisiana.

Louisiana’s Fairness in Women’s Sports Act would have prohibited biological males from participating in female intercollegiate, interscholastic, or intramural athletic sports “that receive state funding.”

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‘Horrendous’: Georgia Audit Lawyer Demands Full Investigation into Fulton County’s Ballot Irregularities

Alawyer spearheading a major ballot audit inside Georgia’s largest county is warning the irregularities apparent in that county’s election management are “horrendous” and cut against “the basic principle of our democracy.”

Atlanta-based attorney Bob Cheeley made those claims while talking to Just the News editor-in-chief John Solomon on Tuesday night’s “Securing our Elections: Protecting Your Vote” special on Real America’s Voice.

Cheeley is among the investigators approved by a Georgia court to audit the 2020 absentee ballots of Fulton County, Ga., a county critical to Joe Biden’s historic 2020 win of Georgia that helped propel him to the White House.

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Kyrsten Sinema Reaffirms That She Will Not Support Abolishing the Filibuster

Arizona Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema reaffirmed her opposition to abolishing the 60-vote Senate filibuster, rebuffing progressives who have decried the legislative rule and called for its removal.

Sinema argued that scrapping the Senate rule would erode “democracy’s guardrails,” writing in The Washington Post that doing so would lead the nation to “lose much more than we gain.”

“It’s no secret that I oppose eliminating the Senate’s 60-vote threshold,” Sinema wrote. “I held the same view during three terms in the U.S. House, and said the same after I was elected to the Senate in 2018.”

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Commentary: The Biden No-Go Zones

Joe Biden

In American journalism, there are supposed to be some clear, nonnegotiable third-rails. 

One is zero tolerance for overtly racist language and comportment among our movers and shakers. Reporters, for example, for four years damned Donald Trump for his neutralizing summation that there were both “fine people” and extremists mingled among the hordes of protestors during their occasionally violent encounters in Charlottesville, Virginia. 

It mattered little to the media that Trump added qualifiers of “many” and “both” sides of the protests: 

We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence, on many sides . . . And I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists, because they should be condemned totally—but you had many people in that group other than neo-Nazis and white nationalists, OK? . . . Now, in the other group also, you had some fine people, but you also had troublemakers and you see them come with the black outfits and with the helmets and with the baseball bats—you had a lot of bad people in the other group, too.

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Commentary: Quashing H.R. 1 is Not Enough

People going to vote

Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) has upset the plans of his party leaders to jam though hyper-partisan legislation and tip the electoral balance in favor of Democrats for all future elections. Manchin, a secretary of state before he was elected governor, is refusing to end the filibuster, or to vote for H.R. 1, the cynically named “For the People Act.” Writing in the Charleston Gazette Mail, Manchin contends: 

The right to vote is fundamental to our American democracy and protecting that right should not be about party or politics. Least of all, protecting this right, which is a value I share, should never be done in a partisan manner. . . . I believe that partisan voting legislation will destroy the already weakening binds of our democracy . . .

H.R. 1, which Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) plans to bring to the floor for a vote this week, proposes a near-complete takeover of elections by Congress; it would replace most state election laws, substituting new laws that in some instances are even worse than the “progressive” approach take in states like Minnesota and California. The proposed law also taps the people’s tax revenue for political campaigns and hijacks state rules on redistricting. 

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Virginia Will Give Higher Education Assistance to Illegal Immigrants

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam held a ceremonial bill signing on legislation that provides financial assistance for higher education to students who are in the country illegally.

House Bill 2123/Senate Bill 1387 will allow students who are in the state illegally to access education benefits equal to residents of the commonwealth, including in-state tuition and financial assistance programs the state provides for public and private colleges and universities.

“Until last year, undocumented students had to pay out-of-state tuition rates,” Northam said Monday during the ceremony at Marymount University. “We’re all proud to have changed that. Lowering the cost barriers for children who have grown up in our schools. And now it’s time to give those students the opportunity to get help in paying for their education.”

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New Immigration Policy Will Expand Access to Work Permits and Provide Deportation Relief for Crime Victims

Some immigrants who were victims of crimes will be able to more easily apply for work permits and allowed relief from deportation, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced Monday.

The new process will allow immigrants with U visas, granted to migrants who are victims of criminal activity, expedited access to work permits if their claims are found to be made in good faith and they aren’t trying to defraud the immigration system, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced.

For a petition to be considered bona fide, the applicant must have properly filed their forms and a personal statement describing their situation with the agency along with necessary biometric data.

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Voter I.D. Constitutional Amendment Proposed in Pennsylvania

People in line, waiting to vote

A pair of Pennsylvania lawmakers said Friday that state residents themselves should decide the stringency of the state’s voter identification law.

The push comes after Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf said he’d never support strengthening existing voter I.D. law – one of the top priorities for Republicans in their election reform proposal unveiled Thursday. 

Sen. Judy Ward, R-Hollidaysburg, and Rep. Jeff Wheeland, R-Williamsport, both support their party’s proposal to require identification each and every time a resident casts a ballot in-person. Current law stipulates identification only for first time voters in a precinct. 

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Wisconsin Bill Targets Unequal Private Funding of Elections, A Major Concern in 2020

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers

Abill passed this week by the Wisconsin State Assembly would forbid local municipalities from accepting private funds for election management, directing those funds to pass through the state government and be equitably distributed throughout Wisconsin.

The measure is a response to ongoing concerns over the millions in private election funding poured into the state by the Center for Tech and Civic Life, a Chicago-based nonprofit heavily funded by Facebook co-founder/CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Passed largely on party-line votes in both the state House and Senate, the bill is likely to be nixed by Democratic Gov. Tony Evers.

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Eighteen Months Later, Democrats’ First Trump Impeachment Tale in Tatters

In the first of their two drives to impeach Donald Trump, Democrats had a simple storyline: The then-president abused his power by requesting an investigation of Hunter Biden’s dealings in Ukraine when Joe Biden’s son had done nothing wrong.

That mantra carried through the 2020 election, repeated by Democrats and sympathetic news anchors.

“President Trump has falsely accused your son of doing something wrong while serving on a company board in Ukraine,” CNN anchor Anderson Cooper claimed as he set up a question during an interview with Joe Biden last year. “I want to point out there is no evidence of wrongdoing by either one of you.”

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Biden Bureau of Land Management Nominee Tracy Stone-Manning Was Involved in ‘Eco-Terrorism’ Case, Resulted in College Roommate’s Conviction, Prison Sentence, Court Records Show

Tracy Stone-Manning

President Joe Biden’s nominee to lead the Bureau of Land Management, Tracy Stone-Manning, received legal immunity to testify in a 1993 criminal trial, court documents obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation show. The trial resulted in a 17 month prison sentence for tree spiking, a violent tactic used to prevent logging.

Stone-Manning testified that she sent an anonymous and threatening letter to the Forest Service in 1989 on behalf of John P. Blount, who she identified as her former roommate and a member of her circle of friends, court documents show. The letter warned that a local forest in Idaho set to be logged had been sabotaged with tree spikes, according to the documents.

“P.S. You bastards go in there anyway and a lot of people could get hurt,” the letter stated.

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Commentary: Minimum Wage Hikes Led to Lower Worker Compensation, New Research Shows

Opponents of minimum wage laws tend to focus their criticism on one particular adverse consequence: by artificially raising the price of labor, they reduce employment, particularly for the most vulnerable in society.

“Minimum wage laws tragically generate unemployment, especially so among the poorest and least skilled or educated workers,” economist Murray Rothbard wrote in 1978. “Because a minimum wage, of course, does not guarantee any worker’s employment; it only prohibits, by force of law, anyone from being hired at the wage which would pay his employer to hire him.

Though some economists, such as Paul Krugman, reject Rothbard’s claim, a recent study found the overwhelming body of academic research supports the idea that minimum wage laws increase unemployment.

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Six Times in a Row, Becerra Refuses to Admit Partial Birth Abortion Is Illegal

Baby boy sleeping

Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra repeatedly refused Thursday to acknowledge that partial birth abortion is illegal in the U.S.

Becerra falsely denied last month that there is an existing law banning partial birth abortion, apparently forgetting the law that he himself voted against. His denial sparked a backlash among conservatives and pro-life advocates and prompted multiple senators to question him about the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act in hearings this week.

During Thursday’s hearing, Republican Montana Sen. Steve Daines asked Becerra whether partial birth abortion is illegal several times. Becerra repeatedly refused to address the question or acknowledge that partial birth abortion is illegal and emphasized that Roe v. Wade is the law of the land.

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$6 Trillion Biden Budget Formally Refers to Mothers as ‘Birthing People’

Woman making a heart over her pregnant belly

Joe Biden’s proposed budget for the year 2022 was found to contain anti-scientific language that eliminates the concept of gender from the act of childbirth, according to the Washington Free Beacon.

The budget plan, which costs a record-breaking total of $6 trillion, dedicates over $200 million in healthcare spending for the purpose of reducing the “high rate of maternal mortality and race-based disparities in outcomes among birthing people,” despite providing no evidence to back up this assertion. The phrase “birthing people” replaces the more widely-known and correct term, which is “mother.”

The push to replace mother with “birthing people” is part of a broader effort to eliminate so-called “gendered language,” with the Left claiming that gender is merely a “social construct” and that there are more than two genders, even though both claims are false. This was made evident on Mother’s Day a month ago, where several Democrats and far-left organizations – including Congresswoman Cori Bush (D-Mo.) and the pro-abortion group NARAL – included the terminology “birthing people” in their respective Mother’s Day statements.

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Turnout in Virginia Democratic Primary Dropped About 11 Percent

Ralph Northam

Voters from around the commonwealth cast their ballots Tuesday to determine which candidate will represent the Democratic Party in Virginia’s 2021 race for governor, but the turnout dropped by about 11% compared to the 2017 primary.

In total, more than 488,100 people voted in the party’s five-candidate primary, compared to 542,858 in 2017’s two-candidate primary. This shows an 11% drop and more than 50,000 fewer votes cast in 2021.

About 8% of Democratic voters turned out for the primary, which is lower than 2017 when about 10% turned out to cast a vote. However, despite the numbers being low compared to the previous election, they are still higher than average when compared to the other most recent gubernatorial primaries.

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Judge Halts Debt Relief Program for Farmers of Color After White Farmers Sue

A federal judge Thursday afternoon suspended a loan forgiveness program that issues relief to farmers and agricultural workers of color.

Judge William Griesbach of Wisconsin’s Eastern District handed down a temporary restraining order after the conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL) filed a lawsuit in April. The group alleged in its announcement that President Joe Biden’s relief program was unconstitutional and that white farmers should have been included in the loan program.

“The Court recognized that the federal government’s plan to condition and allocate benefits on the basis of race raises grave constitutional concerns and threatens our clients with irreparable harm, said Rick Esenberg, WILL’s president and general counsel, in a press release Thursday. “The Biden administration is radically undermining bedrock principles of equality under the law.”

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Peter Navarro: ‘St. Fauci’ and Others Have Blood on Hands after Blocking Trump Admin. from Distributing 60 Million HCQ Tablets

Hydroxychloroquine tablets

It turns out that the anti-malaria drug former president Trump famously touted in March of 2020 as a promising treatment for COVID-19, would indeed have been a “game changer” if only it had been widely used.

Use of Hydroxychloroquine to treat the coronavirus can increase survival rates by over 100 percent, according to a new study.

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Texas Governor Greg Abbott Announces Statewide Plan to Build Border Wall and Arrest Illegals

Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R-Texas) announced on Thursday that the state of Texas will take action on its own to address the worsening border crisis, including by building its own border wall and taking extra steps to arrest illegal aliens who are released by federal border authorities, according to CNN.

Abbott made his announcement at a Border Security Summit with other Texas officials present, saying that he would dedicate $1 billion to border security and create his own task force to address the issue.

Abbott said that the efforts would build off of his disaster declaration that was issued last week, which directed Texas’s Department of Public Safety to more strictly enforce laws against criminal trespassing, smuggling, and human trafficking, while also allowing the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to crack down on “any child care facility that shelters or detains unlawful immigrants.”

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Manchin to Vote Against Bill Federalizing Elections, Dealing Major Blow to Democrats

Joe Manchin

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.V., declared Sunday he will oppose his party’s legislation to federalize how elections are conducted, dealing a severe blow to Democratic passage in the evenly divided Senate.

The For The People Act would among other things ban voter ID requirements, mandate mail-in voting options and begin registering voters at age 16. It has faced uniform Republican opposition.

In an op-ed published in the Charleston Gazette-Mail, Manchin declared the bill as too partisan and divisive.

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Commentary: A Cautionary Tale of Unintended Consequences

For as long as politicians have been passing legislation, there have been measurable consequences to that legislation – both intentional and unintentional. Usually, the final impact is not known for years after a law is passed. We could write a book predicting problems with the proposed federal bill, H.R.1, the so-called For the People Act, but the state of Connecticut has given American taxpayers a timely preview of the burdens and waste we can expect from just one of the bill’s many government mandates. Specifically, the requirement that states must mail out ballot applications to all registered voters will unnecessarily spend, and ultimately waste, hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars.

The 2020 elections in Connecticut provide a cautionary preview of this proposed requirement in H.R. 1 to send absentee ballot applications (ABR) to every registered voter. Connecticut Secretary of the State Denise W. Merrill (pictured) did exactly that, spending $7.1 million in federal taxpayer money sending out unsolicited ABRs for the primary and general elections. A total of 3.6 million applications were mailed, yet only 865,000 were converted to actual votes. That’s a cost of $8.20 per ballot returned – by any measure, a poor yield on that investment.

The sad irony about this waste of taxpayers’ money is that the applications were available to voters free of charge either at town halls or on the State of Connecticut website. One had only to pick up the form in person or download and print it in the comfort of his own home. Other states have similarly convenient options for obtaining ABRs and provide for ballot applications to be requested online, by email or by phone. Citizens in these states take responsibility for their right to vote, and the states facilitate their doing so, rather than mandate it.

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High Court Hears Arguments on Tennessee’s School-Choice Program

ORNL Traveling Science Fair at the TN 4th Annual Tennessee STEM Innovation Summit and STEMx Event, Nashville, TN

Tennessee’s highest court heard arguments on a disputed school choice program.

Tennessee’s Education Savings Accounts (ESA) pilot program, approved by the state Legislature in 2019, would provide state-funded scholarships of about $7,100 to low-income students in Nashville and Memphis – home to the state’s two lowest-performing school districts. Students would be able to use the funds to attend nonpublic schools of their choice.

A district court ruled the program unconstitutional when the two counties sued the state to stop the program. The state Court of Appeals upheld that ruling, and the state Supreme Court agreed to hear the case.

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Greg Abbott Says He’ll Suspend Lawmakers’ Pay After Democrats Walk Out on Election Bill

Greg Abbott

Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott said Monday that he would veto funding for his state’s legislature after Democrats delayed the passage of an expansive elections bill.

Democrats in the state House quietly left the floor late Sunday with just hours to spare in the legislative session, preventing the bill from coming up for a vote. If signed into law, Senate Bill 7 would enhance voter ID provisions, empower partisan poll watchers and ban ballot drop boxes and drive-thru voting centers, which were used disproportionately in Texas’ biggest counties.

It would also make it easier to overturn an election in the state, allowing courts to throw out the results of an entire election if the amount of illegally cast votes exceeds the margin between two candidates, regardless of which candidate received more fraudulent votes. In 2020, there were just 43 documented cases of voter fraud, according to the Houston Chronicle.

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Florida Bans Biological Men from Competing in Women’s Sports

Women's volleyball game

Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill Tuesday banning biological males from women’s sports.

The Fairness in Women’s Sports Act prohibits biological males from participating in athletic teams or sports designated for female students and requires that a student’s school or institution “request a certain health examination and consent form or other statement from the student’s health care provider to verify the student’s biological sex under certain circumstances.”

“The Fairness in Women’s Sports Act will empower Florida women & girls to be able to compete on a level playing field,” DeSantis tweeted Tuesday. “This will help ensure that opportunities for things like college scholarships will be protected for female athletes for years to come.”

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Nevada Bill Would Knock Iowa from Being the First Presidential Primary State

Nevada Legislature Building, Carson City, Nevada

The Nevada legislature passed a bill Monday seeking to make the state the first in the country to hold its presidential primary.

If adopted, it would upend a decades-long political tradition that saw Iowa and New Hampshire go first and second during primary season respectively. The change would likely result in pushback from Iowa and New Hampshire in order to keep their coveted spots.

The bill passed the state Assembly Wednesday 30-11 and the state Senate Monday 15-6, and awaits the signature of Nevada Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak. However, the bill would need the approval of both the Republican and Democratic parties to actually take shape ahead of 2024.

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Senators Propose $1 Billion to Aid DHS in Addressing Future Migrant Surges

Members of Galveston County S.W.A.T. work with with Customs and Border Protection Agents during Maritime Tactical Operations Group vessel boarding training in the Houston Ship Channel, Aug. 23, 2016.

Senators introduced legislation that would require federal agencies tasked with managing migration at the border to make strategic plans and allow access to $1 billion in contingency funding, lawmakers announced Friday.

Republican Ohio Sen. Rob Portman and Democratic Arizona Sen. Mark Kelly introduced the Border Response Resilience Act that would establish a $1 billion “Irregular Migration Border Response Fund” for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to provide food, clothing, blankets, and transportation for unaccompanied migrant minors and family members without having to transfer funding allocated to border security, according to the lawmakers. The act would require federal officials to make plans and “conduct exercises to improve the federal response to increased migration at the border.”

“DHS has been unprepared for unlawful migrant surges at our southern border in 2014, 2019, and again during the current crisis. This is unacceptable. DHS and other federal agencies must be able to respond immediately to the need for shelter for migrants as well as additional personnel to handle surging numbers of unlawful migrants at our border,” Portman said in a statement.

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Texas Democrats Walk out to Stop GOP Voting Reform Bill, Abbott to Call Special Session

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott speaking at FreePac, hosted by FreedomWorks, in Phoenix, Arizona.

Texas House Democrats on Sunday night staged a walkout to block their Republican counterparts’ sweeping voter-reform legislation.

The move blocked the passage of the bill by effectively ending the Texas legislature’s session. However, GOP Gov. Greg Abbott quickly announced that he would order a special session to finish the process, and achieve a top state GOP legislative priority.

The walkout is one of Democrats’ biggest protests to date against Republican efforts across the country to enact measures to tighter security on state election systems, according to the Associated Press.

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Gov. Lee’s Signature Makes Tennessee a Second Amendment Sanctuary

Guy shooting hand gun at gun range

Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee signed a bill Wednesday that makes the state a Second Amendment sanctuary.

Senate Bill 1335 prevents any “law, treaty, executive order, rule, or regulation of the United States government” that violates the Tennessee Constitution or the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution from being enforced in the state.

That violation would have to be determined by either the Tennessee or U.S. Supreme Court. The stipulation was added during debate of the bill in the Tennessee House, and the Senate concurred.

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Biden Administration Aid to the Palestinians Could Go to Hamas

Hundreds march in New York City to support Palestinians and resistance in Gaza

A spokesperson for the Biden Administration’s State Department confirmed the possibility that some of the aid being sent to the Palestinians could go to the terrorist organization Hamas, according to the Washington Free Beacon.

The administration is allocating up to $100 million of American taxpayers’ money to go to the Palestinians, but has repeatedly declined to confirm if there are any safeguards in the aid package that could prevent some of the funds from going to Hamas, the terror group that is responsible for thousands of unprovoked rocket attacks on Israel in recent weeks.

An unnamed senior official with the State Department said that “as we’ve seen in life, as we all know in life, there are no guarantees,” with regards to the possibility of terrorists getting their hands on some of the funds.

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Senate Republicans Kill Bipartisan Bill Establishing 9/11-Style Commission into January 6 Capitol Attack

Jan. 6 Capitol Riot

Senate Republicans killed a bipartisan bill establishing a commission to investigate the Jan. 6 attack at the Capitol, filibustering the first legislation since President Joe Biden took office after a multi-hour, overnight session pushed the vote back a day.

The bill failed 54 to 35, getting the support of six Republicans instead of the 10 that it needed to overcome the Senate’s 60-vote threshold required to begin debate. The bill would have established a 10-member, bipartisan commission into the Capitol riot, when pro-Trump rioters attempted to block Congress from certifying Biden’s victory.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell led the Republican opposition, and called the bill “slanted and unbalanced” last week.

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‘I Still Felt Incomplete’: Detransitioned Men, Women Describe How Frighteningly Easy it Was to Get Trans Surgeries, Hormones

Doctors room with surgeons

Multiple men and women who have detransitioned described how easy it was for them to get transgender surgeries and hormones in a new CBS segment — and how the surgeries or treatment negatively impacted them.

As lawmakers across the country introduce and pass bills focused on gender transitions, Lesley Stahl interviewed multiple medical experts and former or current transgender people who expressed fear that transgender surgeries and hormone treatments, often irreversible, are too easily attainable.

The CBS host said that the program “interviewed more than 30 detransitioners, who say they also had experienced regret, including these four, who hadn’t met before now.”

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Utah Legislature Passes Resolution to Ban Critical Race Theory from Schools

House Speaker Brad Wilson

Republicans in Utah’s state legislature passed a resolution on Wednesday to instruct the state’s schools to ban Critical Race Theory from their curriculum, as reported by Breitbart.

During the vote in the Utah House of Representatives, every single Democrat walked off the floor in protest of the bill, thus allowing the legislation to pass with only Republican votes. The “House Resolution on Critical Race Theory in Public Education” was subsequently passed by the Utah Senate. Because the measure is a resolution rather than a bill, it did not need the signature of Governor Spencer Cox (R-Utah) in order to pass.

House Speaker Brad Wilson (R-Utah) said that with the resolution, the state legislature was “calling on the state school board to look at the curriculum and determine what the right parameters for this discussion to happen.”

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‘Meet the Press’ Anchor Chuck Todd Was Senator Klobuchar’s Landlord, Never Disclosed Relationship

Amy Klobuchar and Chuck Todd

Sen. Amy Klobuchar rented a Virginia home from NBC host Chuck Todd, who never disclosed the relationship during his many interviews with the Minnesota politician.

That’s according to a Thursday report from Breitbart editor Alex Marlow, who discusses the relationship in his new book, “Breaking the News: Exposing the Establishment Media’s Hidden Deals and Secret Corruptions.”

Marlow states that Klobuchar and her husband, attorney John Bessler, began renting an Arlington, Va., home from Todd in 2008, shortly into her first term as a U.S. senator. Monthly rent for the three-bedroom house was $3,200, earning Todd $38,400 annually.

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