Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Supreme Court Caves to Left on Racial Quotas

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The Supreme Court sided on Tuesday with federal interference in the Alabama legislature for the second time in four months, by ordering or allowing the liberal judicial override of a redistricting plan. This misuse of the Voting Rights Act obstructs a state legislature from exercising its constitutional authority to reformulate its congressional districts based on population changes.

Some 15 years after Americans elected a black president, and long after black congressmen and senators have been elected by majority-white constituents, the Supreme Court is still falling for the liberal lie that whites won’t elect a black representative. Liberals perpetuate this fiction to increase the number of Democrat-controlled congressional districts, rather than to protect voting rights.

Alabama already has one majority-black congressional district out of seven. But liberals insist that an additional district be drawn based solely on race, even though the Fourteenth Amendment stands against racial discrimination by the government of any state.

Last June the Supreme Court pontificated against universities for basing their admissions decisions in part on race. But that same month, and again this week, the same Supreme Court held that a state legislature must redraw Alabama’s congressional districts based on the race of its voting age population, in order to create the highest possible number of majority-black districts.

A few Justices appear spooked by the possibility that the liberal media might call them racist if they do not require racial quotas in redistricting, even though that was never overtly required before. The Court implicitly adopts the false argument that a district would not elect a black Representative if fewer than half of its voters are black.

Congress currently has four African-American members representing districts with far less than a black majority: Byron Donalds, whose Florida district is 7% black; Wesley Hunt, whose Texas district is 7% black; John James, whose Michigan district is 3% black; and Burgess Owens, whose Utah district is less than 2% black. Sen. Tim Scott represents South Carolina, which is only 26% black, and is a candidate for president.

Of course, all these fine elected officials are Republicans, which is not what liberals seek. Instead, what they want is to maximize the number of Democrat-held districts, regardless of color.

The Supreme Court obliges, as two Republican-appointed Supreme Court Justices who otherwise purport to defend state sovereignty flipped to the liberal side to override the Alabama legislature. This Court that refused to touch any election issue brought by Trump is eager to appease progressives who misuse race to manipulate election outcomes.

The Court refuses to admit that it is demanding the equivalent of unconstitutional racial quotas. Yet on Tuesday, by issuing unsigned orders without comment, the Court reaffirmed its Allen v. Milligan decision last June that requires Alabama to use racial quotas in redistricting.

John Roberts and Brett Kavanaugh were the justices who joined the liberal bloc to expand Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act to force this extraordinary override of a state legislature. Roberts joined despite his ruling in 2013 that Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act was no longer needed, and Kavanaugh concurred despite his caveat that “the authority to conduct race-based redistricting cannot extend indefinitely into the future.”

The fiction of liberals and federal courts pretending to prefer race-blind policies is laid bare by their racial quotas for redistricting. States should not be forced to perpetuate the balkanization of voting along racial lines, coupled with ballot harvesting strategies that in some precincts have delivered nearly every ballot for the Democrat Party.

Our Constitution is color-blind and should be interpreted that way on all issues, not just college admissions. As explained by Clarence Thomas, the senior black justice on the Court, disputes about drawing congressional districts should be resolved “in a way that would not require the Federal Judiciary to decide the correct racial apportionment of Alabama’s congressional seats.”

Every ten years a new census results in states redrawing their congressional districts to account for shifting population and the gain or loss of a congressional seat. The Alabama legislature justifiably sought to keep its southwest Gulf Coast region within one congressional district because there is a community of interest there, while plaintiffs sought to break it into separate districts in order to forge a second majority-Democrat, majority-black district.

Democrats challenged the legislature’s decision based on their theory about the “Black Belt” region of Alabama, so named for the color of its rich soil and not the color of its residents. The Alabama legislature included much of this region in a district where blacks comprised 42% of its population, which should have been enough.

By racially balkanizing Alabama, the Court reduces the likelihood that a black congressman can be elected statewide as Tim Scott has been reelected as senator in South Carolina.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

“Social Justice” Demands 4-Day Work Week

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The Democrat takeover of Michigan in the last election is yielding more harmful consequences. The Detroit-based United Auto Workers (UAW) union has a new far-Left, anti-Trump president, who was elected by fewer than 500 votes in the runoff after losing the first ballot.

This new UAW President Shawn Fain has unleashed a first-ever strike against all three Michigan automakers. While denying that he is wrecking the economy, Fain declared last week that “the truth is we are going to wreck the billionaire economy,” and he will “go the distance to win economic and social justice at the Big Three.”

Fain’s demands on the Detroit Three would double their labor expenses, which are already far higher than at Tesla and other auto manufacturers. About half of cars sold in the U.S. are assembled at foreign-owned plants whose American workers have consistently rejected the UAW’s attempts to organize and represent them.

A central demand by the militant new UAW leadership is to shrink to a 4-day work week while insisting on full 5-day pay. This would harm the competitiveness of the Detroit automakers, and set the precedent for a broad reduction in other services to the American public, such as reduced mail delivery.

Last month this radical new UAW president Shawn Fain declared that “billionaires in my opinion don’t have a right to exist. The very existence of billionaires shows us that we have an economy that is working for the benefit of the few, and not the many.”

The auto workers are being sold down the river by their leadership,” President Trump said before the strike that President Biden failed to avert. The UAW leadership should be demanding an end to Biden’s electric car mandates and subsidies, which are wrecking jobs at Detroit automakers.

On September 27 Trump will address union workers rather than participate in a second Republican debate against rivals who have no chance of winning. Trump has vowed to enact a “complete and total repeal of Democrats’ catastrophic EV mandate,” referring to electric vehicles, on Trump’s first day back in office, to save Michigan and American jobs.

One-third of U.S. auto workers voted for Trump in 2016 and 2020. But instead of representing his politically divided membership, Fain has lashed out against Trump and thereby given away any political leverage the UAW might have had with Biden.

The Wall Street Journal editorial board observed on Friday that “the underlying cause of the auto walkout is the Biden Administration’s forced electric-vehicle transition.” Democrats cannot broker an end to the strike unless they stop crippling the Detroit auto industry with demands for electric cars that use components from China.

Democrats are mandating that electric vehicles become two-thirds of the Detroit automakers’ sales by 2032, even though they are less than 3% today. The car companies’ profits that liberals cite in this strike are being plowed back into money-losing electric car development that few genuinely want.

Disappearing jobs in Michigan and the Midwest would result from the EV mandate that favors Tesla’s manufacturing with cheaper labor. Ignoring this, the UAW’s headquarters in Detroit is called “Solidarity House” while their new leader is a throwback to prior strike waves that destroyed Motown as the engine of America’s prosperity.

This UAW strike is music to the ears of far-Left Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), who quickly piled on by deploring “the outrageous level of corporate greed.” His comrade in the U.S. Senate, the foul-mouthed John Fetterman (D-PA), joined picketing strikers.

CNN reports that union members, once uniformly Democrat in voting, have increasingly shifted to vote Republican. Impervious to this, Fain warned prior to the strike that “either you stand for a billionaire class where everybody else gets left behind, or you stand for the working class, the working-class people vote.”

It is not the billionaire class that is choking off growth in auto workers’ wages, but the war against the traditional car that is being waged by liberals in California and the Biden administration. California has banned sales of Detroit’s traditional cars beginning in 2035, and California recently sued the oil producing companies on which cheap gasoline depends.

One study by the University of Michigan estimated that a four-week strike against the Big Three – General Motors, Ford, and Stellantis (formerly Chrysler) – would cause a loss of 161,000 jobs in Michigan itself. Already this strike involves 13,000 workers, with ripple effects harming far more, and before long this work stoppage could mushroom to harm hundreds of thousands of families primarily in the Midwest.

The future for American workers is Trump’s consistently strong stance against losing automobile jobs to China and against subsidizing electric cars that Detroit cannot afford to make. Rather than be left behind due to their outdated class warfare rhetoric, the UAW leaders should catch a ride with Trump to attain employment growth with good-paying manufacturing jobs.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Leftist Math Doesn’t Compute

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Kids are back in school now, but schools are not back to excellence. Our students lag far behind the rest of the world in basic learning, including a dismal ranking in the bottom third in math skills among industrialized nations with whom we compete.

Math is a casualty of the Leftist takeover of education, which makes diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) more important than teaching basic skills. When schools postpone algebra to the ninth grade, students never complete the basic math they need for a STEM-related job.

In their mindless push for greater diversity, New York Democrats
recently dropped the words “math and science” from the name of their once-elite Math & Science Exploratory School in Brooklyn. Test scores at that middle school have plummeted from more than 95% of 7th-graders passing the math exams a half-decade ago to merely 69% passing last year.

The school used to select students based on academic performance, thereby giving families an incentive to compete for admission. But under the DEI approach imposed by New York’s Democrat politicians, the renamed Exploratory School now uses a lottery to select its students, and 52% of accepted students must come from unstable, impoverished, or non-English speaking families.

Math is one of the biggest casualties. The Left disliked how some groups do better at math, particularly advanced math, and this conflicts with the DEI political agenda.

Math competitions are usually won by boys, for example, so prizes and awards are not inclusive. The Leftist solution is to eliminate honors and awards, lumping all the kids together in one dumbed-down math program, and the end result is less achievement.

Studies showed that white and Asian students were enrolling in precalculus math classes at rates of two to four times the rates of black and Hispanic students. To conceal this uncomfortable discrepancy, the DEI ideologues ended the tracking that enables advancement by talented math students, and started requiring everyone to take low-level math classes in high school even though they are too easy for some.

School districts in Democrat-controlled cities, particularly in California, have imposed “de-tracking” to choke off opportunities for high-achieving math students. The purported goal is to provide the same access to advanced math to all students, but the effect is to hold back talented students who have the aptitude to qualify for higher-level classes.

A Stanford study earlier this year showed that de-tracking causes smarter kids to be denied an opportunity for advancement, while yielding no measurable improvement for the kids who were left behind in regular classes. If anything, their progress got worse rather than better.

“Leveling,” another name for de-tracking, prevents students with greater math aptitude from progressing to more advanced material. Distraught parents in the ultra-Democratic enclaves of Silicon Valley and San Francisco filed lawsuits earlier this year to challenge this liberal ideology imposed on the schools.

An impressive total of 50 San Francisco parents filed their lawsuit in March to challenge the leveling or de-tracking policy. The parents want the public schools to restore an Algebra I class to middle school, and stop requiring talented students to retake the same class in ninth grade if they have previously passed it.

On Aug. 29, a Palo Alto school board meeting heard from two-dozen students complaining about the de-tracking. One pointed out how a math placement test appeared designed to block accelerated course enrollment.

There is not enough time for students to get to calculus in high school if they are held back by being forced to take Algebra I as freshmen. In Japan and other countries that are far ahead of us in math education, students learn algebra in middle school.

Recently our students’ math skills have fallen another half-year below where they are expected to be, according to a
report. Some blame this on the Covid pandemic, during which many schools shut down for too long, but a bigger cause is liberals prioritizing equity over education in public schools.

The math achievement in our country has dropped to its lowest level in two decades among fourth-grade and eighth-grade students. Many pre-teens cannot even do basic subtraction with two-digit numbers.

For decades public colleges were forced to offer remedial math programs to help students catch up to where they should be, but recent
studies show that approach to be a failure. Like reading, math is best learned at an early age and it becomes harder to learn basic skills as a student gets older.

Electing conservative school board members may help a bit, but not so much in deep blue states like California where the Democrat-controlled legislature imposes its leftwing ideology statewide. Headed to California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desk for signature is
Assembly Bill 1078, which would penalize local school boards if they fail to teach the state-mandated DEI curriculum.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Higher Unemployment Worsened by Higher Immigration

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The end of August brought a double-whammy in government reports. Both unemployment and immigration have sharply increased, and that’s a terrible combination.

Billionaire globalists are just fine with this news, as reflected in an Axios story claiming that “immigrants are coming to the rescue of desperate employers.” The job market is sputtering at a time when illegal border crossings are surging and Biden is allowing a new wave of foreign workers into our country.

More than a million American-born workers were laid off or left their jobs in August, in the sharpest drop since Covid. Meanwhile, many jobs were snatched up by migrants given permission to work here by the Biden administration.

Only a few years ago, President Trump delivered on his pledge to reduce the taking of American jobs by foreign workers, as immigration into the United States declined throughout his presidency. After Obama had allowed a record 1.24 million in net lawful migration to the United States in 2016, Trump got that number down to 376,000 by 2021.

Yet under Biden, net migration shot back up to 1.01 million in 2022. Roughly half of those had official permission to work, as Biden has increased by 335,000 annually the number of permanent green cards and temporary work visas allowing foreigners to grab American jobs.

Other migrants into the U.S. include foreign students attending our universities, like the graduate student from China who was recently charged with murdering his professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Asylum-seekers and refugees are also part of this new wave, and on top of that are the millions of illegal migrants.

The official unemployment rate (among people actively looking for work) rose to 3.8% in August, higher than the 3.5% that was expected. The number of new jobs reported by the government for June and July were adjusted downward by a total of 110,000, in what has become a pattern of revisions decreasing prior reports.

Yet during this same month of August a reported 91,000 poor families from Central and South America migrated illegally into our country. This is the most during the entire Biden administration, and the real number is probably higher.

The Associated Press photographed a family of five plus another man strolling casually and illegally on our side of a border wall in Arizona. Biden is doing nothing to apprehend and return the millions of unlawful migrants who would redefine American culture and politics if this is allowed to continue.

Democrat-controlled New York City recklessly became a sanctuary city in defiance of federal laws, and now its mayor is crying for help to deal with merely 100,000 illegals, which is a tiny fraction of the total influx. A few weeks ago Mayor Eric Adams complained that it’s costing his city $12 billion to house and feed them for three years.

Hordes of illegals are sleeping on the sidewalks outside of the landmark Roosevelt Hotel in midtown Manhattan, which closed during Covid and never reopened. The city’s shelters have filled to capacity, leaving no room for homeless Americans in need.

The liberal solution, believe it or not, is for Biden to increase the number of work permits for illegals rather than deport them. Biden would declare a national emergency and loot American taxpayers if he were not challenged for reelection by Trump, who is running hard against Biden’s open border policies.

Democrat-turned-Independent Kyrsten Sinema, the U.S. Senator running for reelection in Arizona, expressed her outrage that Biden gave New York City $100 million in funding to cope with problems that liberals caused by inviting illegals. “The rest of the country is experiencing some elements of it,” she conceded, “but we are experiencing the brunt” of the crisis in border state Arizona.

Rather than close the southern border, however, Biden’s Department of Homeland Security is starting a “first-of-its-kind national campaign for noncitizens who are work-eligible but have not yet applied for employment authorization.” Filling jobs with illegals displaces the 1.2 million Americans who lost their jobs or left the workforce last month.

On the first day of school last month in Ohio an illegal alien, who had been caught and released by the Biden administration, ran an elementary school bus off the road, killing one child and injuring 26 others. Originally from Haiti he resided in Mexico long enough to obtain a Mexican driver’s license, which he gave to Ohio police and was charged with aggravated vehicular homicide.

Like millions of others who illegally crossed our southern border during this Biden administration, the Haitian migrant was given a notice to appear in immigration court, but then freed to roam wherever he wanted in the U.S. In another recent case in northern Virginia, an illegal alien whose visa expired in 2021 was recently arrested for raping a juvenile.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Trump Can and Will Pardon All

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Scheming liberals think they have checkmated Republicans by charging them with crimes in state court, last week in Atlanta and before that in Michigan. Scary terms like “unpardonable” littered the airwaves on the Sunday morning talk shows, misleading the public to think that President Trump cannot pardon crimes prosecuted in state court.

This is more fake news by the Left. In 17 months a reelected President Trump will pardon all who have been victimized by these politically motivated prosecutions, including those criminally charged in state court.

Many presidential pardons over more than two centuries have fully protected the recipients against “all prosecutions and judicial proceedings,” as President Washington broadly stated in his first pardon in 1797. No one credibly doubted then or now that a presidential pardon protects against state court prosecutions.

The text of the Constitution and decisions by the Supreme Court support a broad pardon power as a prerogative exclusive to the president. The Supreme Court has repeatedly held that “pardon and commutation decisions have not traditionally been the business of courts; as such, they are rarely, if ever, appropriate subjects for judicial review.”

It will be up to President Trump, not the courts, whom to pardon and he has indicated that he will be generous and merciful with this power, unlike other Republicans. Chief Justice Rehnquist explained on behalf of the Supreme Court that “the clemency and pardon power is committed, as is our tradition, to the authority of the executive.”

The Pardon Clause is set forth in Article II, Section 2, Clause 1 of the Constitution, and applies to all “Offenses against the United States.” All of the election integrity conduct by Republicans is viewed by Trump-haters as an offense against federal elections, and thus the conduct is pardonable regardless of where charges are filed.

Moreover, rights guaranteed by the Constitution have been expanded to apply against state infringement on them, as the Bill of Rights protects citizens against the states today. The liberal suggestion that a pardon would not apply against a county prosecutor is the opposite of what liberals have long insisted for the Bill of Rights.

The presidential pardon power in our Constitution was copied from the boundless pardon authority enjoyed by the King of England in 1787. Just three years ago, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit held that the “Framers modeled this provision on the pardon power of the English Crown,” which of course was vast.

Only one narrow limit existed for pardons by the King of England, and only that same restriction was copied into the pardon power inserted into our Constitution for our president. That prevents the issuance of a pardon to undo an impeachment, which makes sense because impeachment is a legislative rather than judicial power.

Last year the Supreme Court, in ruling against New York gun control, emphasized that “the Constitution cannot be interpreted safely except by reference to the common law and to British institutions as they were when the instrument was framed and adopted.” The King’s vast pardon power confirms that this same pardon power in our Constitution is nearly endless.

One reason Trump is far ahead of his flailing rivals is that they refuse to pledge to pardon Trump, let alone the many other victims of these politicized prosecutions. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), himself running for reelection in Texas, chastised the unsuccessful rivals to Trump for how they refused at last week’s debate to pledge to use the pardon power.

On Monday, the Obama-appointed federal judge in D.C. absurdly set the trial date for the sham prosecution there against Trump for the day before the Super Tuesday primary in early March. Trump immediately vowed to appeal and the Supreme Court will likely shut down this and other prosecutions of Trump because they interfere with American voters selecting our next president.

The phrase the “United States” is chanted 71 times in the recent indictment of 19 Republicans in Atlanta. It begins by falsely stating that “Trump and the other Defendants charged in this Indictment refused to accept that Trump lost, and they knowingly and willfully joined a conspiracy to unlawfully change the outcome of the election in favor of Trump.”

This sham Fulton County indictment asserts offenses against the United States within the meaning of the Pardon Clause. Of course Trump can pardon everyone falsely charged in this politicized persecution, and he will.

Liberals further insist that President Trump cannot pardon himself, but fifty years ago President Nixon was advised by some that he could pardon himself. Nixon then chose not to.

The victims of the Left’s political prosecutions should take solace that a re-elected President Trump can and will pardon them. If timid Republican governors and legislators fail to stop political prosecutions then, once again, it will be Trump who singlehandedly overcomes this.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Republicans Should Unite Against Georgia Travesty

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The attempt in Georgia to ruin the lives of 19 Republican leaders with a sham indictment should not be accepted by Americans nationwide. Georgia taxpayers should not be looted by the Fulton County prosecutor with this travesty foisted on the rest of the country, and the American people should not go along with this abuse of power.

Leftists are exploiting a weakness in our political system that for too long has given nearly unlimited and unaccountable power to low-level prosecutors. A county prosecutor has no business interfering with the election for president of the United States, yet Democrats are so determined to hold onto the White House in 2024 that they are willing to go there.

Their single-minded purpose is to prevent – at all costs – the election of a Republican as president. If they succeed at blocking or even imprisoning Trump, no other candidate is likely to take on the Establishment ever again.

The notion that one partisan Democrat county prosecutor can paralyze our presidential election by indicting 19 Republicans, including the front-runner for president, would be comical if portrayed in a movie. Two defendants have already removed their cases to federal court, and Trump is expected to do likewise soon.

In addition to trying to destroy the 19 named defendants, the Democrat county prosecutor in Atlanta absurdly smears 30 more Republicans as unindicted alleged co-conspirators. CNN has identified most of them, including a former New York City police commissioner and even the head of the well-respected conservative group Judicial Watch.

A bright political future awaits Republican leaders who stand against this misuse and abuse of prosecutorial power by a Democrat county prosecutor. So far, too few Republican officials have spoken up against it, which if allowed against Trump would be replayed against other conservative candidates.

But grassroots Republican voters have been energized by this latest assault on President Trump, and his primary rivals should form a united front so that Trump can focus on overcoming this 19-ring circus in Fulton County, Georgia. The Republican dollars being wasted by the GOP candidates campaigning hopelessly against Trump should be reallocated to provide a legal defense to the Republican victims of this atrocity.

The First Amendment rights of Trump and his supporters are not to be burdened by political hacks disguised as county prosecutors. Political speech rights should be better protected against an out-of-state indictment by a partisan prosecutor, and laws should be strengthened to prevent this sordid spectacle from ever happening again.

Only one question is worth asking the eight Republican candidates assembling at the GOP debate on Wednesday, which Trump is properly skipping: What would these candidates do to prevent the ongoing abuse of prosecutorial power by Democrats to try improperly to win elections?

Voters deserve more than mere platitudes about the weaponization of government by the Left. Congress should begin by issuing subpoenas on prosecutors who misuse their offices to interfere with a presidential election.

The Republican candidates should be criticizing the Georgia Governor Brian Kemp for his hands-off, see-no-evil approach to the crisis, even after a state senator asked him to call a special session of the legislature. Apparently these political indictments were timed to drop after legislators had adjourned for the year, but they can be called back.

The hardship imposed on 19 Republicans by this political prosecution is immense and nearly unbearable. Most of them lack the resources to fund their own legal defense, and some of them are not even in Georgia at all.

If a Republican county prosecutor had done this to 19 Democrats, then Democrat governors around the country would be rallying to their defense. There would be howls of protest about such a blatant misuse of prosecutorial power for political gain.

If Georgia will not restrain the misuse of its taxpayer dollars to infringe on First Amendment rights, other states should defend the rights of their own residents against this wrongful attempt to chill political activity in a national election. Objecting to an election as a fraud is no crime, yet that is all these indictments allege.

Racketeering laws invoked by the Democrats in Georgia against Republicans have been misused before against conservative groups. The Supreme Court finally shut down that improper use against a pro-life group under the federal racketeering law, but only after multiple appeals to the high court.

In 1964, Phyllis Schlafly wrote about the perennial battle between powerful liberal insiders and grassroots conservatives in her timeless classic, A Choice Not An Echo. The flagrant misuse of prosecutorial power becomes the latest chapter of interference with the American people in selecting our president.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

Delusional Jack and Dems Haven’t Learned

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Jack Smith has been unanimously reversed before by the U.S. Supreme Court, over his contrived and overzealous prosecution of the Republican Governor of Virginia, Bob McDonnell. That decision came too late to save McDonnell, whose promising career was derailed by Democrats misusing prosecutorial power against Republicans.

Monday night in Georgia, Democrats launched yet another political prosecution of Trump. Tacked onto this indictment by the Democrat-controlled county were 18 other Republicans as defendants, illustrating how this is about politics rather than law.

Democrat allies of President Joe Biden have piled up a string of 91 bogus felony charges against their Republican opponent, Donald Trump. That’s in addition to dozens of similarly contrived charges against lawyers, colleagues and supporters of the leading Republican candidate.

This unprecedented abuse of the legal system for political ends, a process known as lawfare, presents an existential crisis for “democracy in America,” to quote the title of Alexis de Tocqueville’s famous book. Previous generations of Americans met their challenges with our Constitution mostly intact, but this abuse of prosecutorial power threatens our Republic.

Democrats like to recite the mantra that “no person is above the law,” but the Supreme Court has long held that the president is effectively immune from oppressive legal harassment during his term of office. Prosecutions can be so demanding and distracting that no president should be expected to discharge the duties of that high office while under the thumb of a judge.

The leading candidate for president has been ensnared in a judicial process controlled by his political enemies. This unprecedented crisis requires extending the well-established immunity of the president to candidates for that office, such that the American people remain free to select our next president in a free and fair election.

Ignoring that, last Friday the Democrat-appointed judge presiding over Smith’s persecution of Trump in D.C. threatened him with censorship and an accelerated trial if Trump speaks out freely. The pretext for this censorship is to protect the jury pool, which is absurd because that group voted 95% against Trump in 2020.

The D.C. culture is the most hostile in our country to free speech, particularly criticism of its federal officials in the media. Judges and others there constantly obsess with the media, and are notoriously opposed to the First Amendment rights that allow mockery of them.

Early Monday Trump posted on TruthSocial that the Obama-appointed Judge Tanya Chutkan, who presides over his case in D.C., is biased against him as reflected by her comment in court last year while punishing a Trump supporter. “It’s a blind loyalty to one person who, by the way, remains free to this day,” Judge Chutkan declared then.

The inference from her lashing out against Trump because he “remains free to this day” is that she thinks Trump should be imprisoned as his supporters have been. That’s bias, to say the least, and not the appearance of impartiality required by federal law.

The liberal goal of gagging Trump overlooks that the American people have their own First Amendment right to hear what Trump has to say. He’s the front-runner for president, and there is no free speech right more important than that of voters to hear the views of our future president.

Yet Judge Chutkan declared at a hearing on Friday that “the fact that the defendant is engaged in a political campaign is not going to allow him any greater or lesser latitude than any defendant in a criminal case.” Ignoring the First Amendment right of Americans to hear from Trump, the judge said he “is going to have restrictions like every single other defendant.”

Thousands gave Trump a hero’s welcome when he arrived on Saturday at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines, an essential part of presidential campaigns. Accompanying Trump was an overwhelming cast of endorsing congressmen, including Reps. Gus Bilirakis, Byron Donalds, Matt Gaetz, Carlos Gimenez, Brian Mast, Cory Mills, Anna Paulina Luna, Greg Steube and Mike Waltz.

House Republicans should consider serving a subpoena on any judge or prosecutor who attempts to wrongly censor Trump while he campaigns. Rep. Jim Jordan has this subpoena power as Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, as do other Republican committee chairmen who should make this crisis their top priority now.

Federal judges and prosecutors take an oath to abide by the U.S. Constitution, which includes several protections against muzzling Trump. The Qualifications Clause prohibits adding any new conditions on a candidate becoming president, while the First Amendment protects the right of a candidate to speak freely and the right of the American people to hear whatever he has to say.

The aphorism that no one is above the law applies against prosecutors and federal judges, too. Defiance of a congressional subpoena by a judge can result in contempt and, for federal judges and prosecutors, impeachment.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

DC Power Grab Invites a Shutdown

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Three ostensibly unrelated events last week are more connected than the media have acknowledged. Trump was unjustifiably indicted in D.C., the credit rating of the U.S. government was downgraded, and leading House conservatives signaled they are fine with defunding the federal government after September 30.

This downgrading last Tuesday of the federal credit score stunned the Biden White House, which howled in response. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen issued a statement calling it “arbitrary and based on outdated data.”

But House Democrats are predicting some defunding of federal programs and agencies after September 30, when the federal fiscal year ends, because Republican resolve has strengthened to halt runaway government spending. Congress has adjourned until September 12, leaving the divided legislature only a dozen session days to enact a dozen spending bills to keep the lights on in D.C.

Fitch Ratings, which lowered the credit score for the federal government, has been highly respected for more than a century, as one of the so-called Big Three credit agencies. It issued a warning earlier this year; subsequently many mistakenly assumed that the bipartisan deal in June to suspend the debt ceiling until 2025 had allayed concerns.

The sham indictment of Donald Trump in D.C. has given many Republicans no alternative to defunding a federal government weaponized for political gain against them. The army of prosecutors going after Trump includes campaign donors to Biden, and their indictment is as contrived as any ever seen in federal court.

Biden’s politicized DOJ recently demanded that the court gag Trump while he campaigns for president, which would infringe on the First Amendment rights of Americans to hear what the leading candidate has to say about vital national issues. “So, based on yet another Radical Left Hoax, I’ll be the only ‘Politician’ in American history not allowed to SPEAK,” Trump posted early Tuesday on Truth Social.

The charges against Trump pretend that he entered into a conspiracy, which means an actual agreement with others to do something unlawful. Disputing an election, speaking out against suspected election fraud and encouraging others to do likewise, is protected by the First Amendment and not unlawful.

The Biden donor-prosecutors misuse the conspiracy charge to litter the indictment with statements and actions by people other than Trump, and then wrongly accuse Trump of them. Charging someone with criminal conspiracy based on the actions of someone else can be a trick misused by prosecutors when they lack criminal evidence against their target.

Instead of convincing voters as Democrats hoped, Biden political hacks have poisoned the well in D.C. such that more Republicans are ready to stop funding federal agencies and departments misused by Democrats. Fitch’s lowering of the credit rating reflects the reality that the gravy train for unproductive activity in D.C., at the expense of working Americans nationwide, will not chug along forever.

Far from repelling voters from Trump, all indications are that his support grows stronger with each abusive indictment. The disconnect by the D.C. establishment is unsustainable, and inevitably Americans will realize that they need not continue to pay for this misuse of prosecutorial power by Biden campaign donors.

The House controls the purse strings, and one of its conservative leaders is the former college wrestler Rep. Bob Good (R-VA). He stated last week that “most Americans won’t even miss” the federal government if its funding were cut off, which will happen automatically if a new spending plan is not enacted by September 30.

Republicans who opposed the June compromise on the debt ceiling feel vindicated now, as almost immediately after that deal was struck Democrats began prosecuting Trump in Florida at a waste of millions of dollars. The political hacks being funded by Congress even indicted two low-level employees of the former president, presumably to terrorize them into turning against their boss.

This outrageous misuse of taxpayers’ money by federal prosecutors justifies conservatives opposing continued bankrolling of a federal government hijacked by the Left. The conservative House Freedom Caucus has already blocked one of the dozen spending bills needed by October 1 to continue the status quo in D.C.

The most recent indictment against Trump is in D.C., where 95% of its residents and jury pool voted against Trump in 2020, while the remaining 5% fear retaliation if they side with Trump. He cannot possibly obtain an impartial jury in that city, and this case should be moved immediately to nearby West Virginia where people actually work for a living.

House Republicans can selectively defund actions by the Department of Justice, as they did two decades ago in repeatedly prohibiting the use of federal funds to remove a large Latin cross in the Mojave Desert. The House should not be funding this harassment by DOJ of Trump as he campaigns for reelection.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Putrid, Crime-Inducing Cannabis Spreads in Midwest

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

In the first few months since passage of a ballot initiative last November, Missouri has become home to a billion-dollar recreational marijuana industry. With virtually no money available to oppose the $10 million spent by the cannabis industry to fully legalize the weed, the initiative passed by 53-47% in this traditionally conservative state.

A total of 23 states have legalized recreational marijuana now. The liberal states of Colorado and Washington were the first to do so eleven years ago, also based on ballot initiatives that have been the central part of the cannabis strategy to become the $30 billion industry that it is today.

Federal law continues to ban this harmful drug, so it remains illegal to transport across state lines. But most of the marijuana sold is grown or imported into each state illegally, and Bible-Belt Oklahoma is overrun with illegal production and related crimes even though Oklahoma voters rejected legalizing cannabis earlier this year.

The harmful potency of pot has tripled from a generation ago, and one study showed a 3- to 4-fold increase in schizophrenia over the last 20 years. One in six teenage users of cannabis will become addicted to it, and those addicted become 3.2 times more likely to inflict self-harm and die from homicide, often after they spark the violence.

The skunk-like smell of cannabis plants and production facilities are rattling liberal regions. The stench of pot smoking is far worse than cigarettes, and a Brooklyn lawmaker who seeks to ban outdoor pot-smoking in cities says that it is the second biggest complaint to his office, after trash.

California journalist Ann Louise Bardach observed the odor of cannabis operations is “like a few dozen skunks letting loose at the same time,” and many have complained about its daily effect on students in California public schools. She told the British newspaper The Guardian that cannabis production causes “respiratory ills now, asthma and weepy eyes” to some residents.

Many of the “grows,” as cannabis cultivations are called, are still illegal to avoid the taxes and regulations. Legalizing pot in California caused the black market for pot-growing to boom to compete in a crowded market that has seen prices collapse by two-thirds in the last year, while many of the cannabis operations are run by out-of-town corporations rather than local farmers.

The mega-spending on ballot initiatives is how the cannabis industry has captured and victimized nearly half of our country, including places like Missouri where the Republican legislature did not want it. Then rampant exploitation and crime flows into a state as cannabis invades.

We literally have thousands of pounds of finished marijuana from an illegal grow and illegal source,” California Merced County Sheriff Vern Warnke announced last week. Workers “were forced to process marijuana while staying in horrible living conditions to pay back the individuals that brought them across the border,” his office explained.

"The reality of legal weed in California: Huge illegal grows, violence, worker exploitation and deaths," screamed a headline in the liberal Los Angeles Times last September. More than five years after pot was fully legalized in that state, the vast majority of sales continue to be of illegal rather than legal marijuana.

So it won't be the many family-run farms in Missouri that benefit from this new billion-dollar enticement of violence, illegal aliens, and squalid working conditions. Instead, this will bring more crime to this conservative state, due to its easy ballot initiative process.

On August 8, the people of Ohio will vote on increasing its threshold for passing a ballot initiative to 60%, as has long been required in Florida, rather than merely 50% plus 1 allowed in Missouri. In supporting this Ohio measure, Republicans including Sen. JD Vance (R-OH) seek to protect against out-of-state corporate money enacting harmful laws through the ballot initiative process.

This change in Ohio is the only way to keep pot-by-ballot-initiative out of that key battleground state, as last week the cannabis industry fell only 679 signatures short of the 124,046 total they need to put on the November ballot an initiative to fully legalize pot. They have 10 days to obtain the additional signatures, which is easily done.

Congress rejects corporate pressure to legalize cannabis, as do most state legislatures. But spending tens of millions of dollars to push through a ballot initiative is pocket change to the cannabis industry, which continues to target conservative states like South Dakota and Florida where ballot initiatives are allowed.

There are few lawful profits in the cannabis industry, as ordinary investors and small businesses have been learning the hard way while watching their capital evaporate in smoke. Instead, legalizing pot makes it possible for the illegal operations to sell their weed to the unsuspecting public.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.