Tuesday, April 30, 2024

Trump-Haters Hit a Brick Wall at SCOTUS

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Trump-hating prosecutors’ joy ride hit a brick wall in the Supreme Court last Thursday, where six Justices doubted and ridiculed liberals’ attempts to prosecute Trump in federal court. This was so thoroughly a rout of Biden’s minions that it also diminishes the impact of the ongoing New York County prosecution of Trump.

Delusional Biden supporters have expected federal prosecutors to rescue Biden by putting Trump on trial before the election. But a barrage of comments by a Supreme Court majority exposed fatal defects in this legal strategy of anti-Trumpers to win the presidential election by prosecuting Trump.

Chief Justice Roberts did more than reject the decision by the Democrat-dominated D.C. Circuit that went against Trump. Roberts mocked that decision for relying on a senseless tautology, which is also known as begging the question – assuming the truth of a statement without proving it.

Roberts observed that the reasoning of the prosecutors and lower courts is that Trump can be prosecuted because he is being prosecuted, without any review of whether the prosecution has any legitimate basis. In a rare rebuke of the D.C. Circuit that sits near the Supreme Court, Roberts essentially said that it had failed to do its job in this landmark case.

Roberts quoted this ruling by the D.C. Circuit: “A former president can be prosecuted for his official acts because the fact of the prosecution means that the former president has allegedly acted in defiance of the laws.” Roberts then pointedly asked the federal attorney, “Do you agree with that statement?”

The Biden Administration attorney responded, “Well, I think it sounds tautologically true,” which is another way of saying that the decision against Trump by the D.C. Circuit was senselessly circular. Dismayed by the government’s defense of the tautology, Roberts retorted, “I think it sounds tautologically true as well, and that, I think, is the clearest statement of the court’s holding, which is why it concerns me.”

Hot air suddenly rushed out of the High Court from the many Trump-haters gathered there in anticipation of blocking Trump’s reelection. There is no path for liberals to attain a majority on the Supreme Court without Roberts on their side, and he is apparently strongly against them in this immunity case.

Justice Gorsuch observed that future presidents could pardon themselves at the end of their terms to ensure that there would not be similar prosecutions of them. Justice Alito followed up by asking the attorney representing the Justice Department whether a president had the power to pardon himself.

To the further dismay of liberals, the government attorney said that the Justice Department has never taken a position on whether a president can pardon himself. So that opens the door to Trump issuing blanket pardons against prosecutions of him and his incoming staff upon taking office on January 20th.

Justice Amy Coney Barrett went beyond this pending case by asking whether county-level prosecutions should be allowed against a former president, which are ongoing in New York County and in Fulton County, Georgia. The government attorney then deflated liberals’ balloon further by admitting that county prosecutions could be shut down based on the Supremacy Clause in the Constitution.

Trump could not attend the Supreme Court argument on Thursday because he is stuck in a county-level prosecution against him in New York City, where a low-level judge just fined and threatened imprisonment of Trump for speaking out. But that case is looking increasingly irrelevant to the election, as the battleground states already have a dim view of “The Big Apple” as Manhattan was called in its heyday.

The arrogance of some county prosecutors was laid bare by a body cam in New York that captured a county district attorney refusing to pull over when caught red-handed driving 55 mph in a 35 mph zone, despite the lights and siren by the police officer.

The DA ranted after parking at her home, “You know what? If you give me a traffic ticket, that’s fine. I’m the one who prosecutes it, OK? Just go ahead and do it.”

I understand the law better than you,” the DA declared while defying the officer’s lawful commands. Because of the DA’s belligerence, the officer had to call for help from another officer on this routine traffic stop for speeding.

The polite police officer said, “I’m doing my job. You say you’re a DA?” The haughty NY Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley shot back, “I am THE DA.”

On Tuesday, Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) filed a formal ethics complaint against the federal prosecutor, Jack Smith, for interfering with the upcoming election by seeking to accelerate a trial of Trump. She observes that his “conduct has brought disrepute to the Department of Justice and the entire federal government.”

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, April 23, 2024

1968 Returns as Biden’s Nightmare

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Politics repeats itself, and the presidential election of 1968 has returned as Biden’s nightmare. On Monday, student protests shut down in-person classes at Columbia and disrupted Yale, New York University, and Harvard, sparking many arrests.

The upcoming Democratic National Convention could face worse turmoil in Chicago, the same place where the Democrats held their 1968 convention amid anti-war riots that caused a bad impression with voters. Even Chicago’s very tough Mayor Richard J. Daley was unable to control the violent protests, which television cameras broadcast nationwide.

Today, with an emasculated police force and none of the law-and-order that ruled Chicago decades ago, the growing unrest could be disastrous for Biden’s reelection. Mass arrests, like that initiated by New York University on Monday, will become necessary and will not play well with young voters whom Biden desperately needs.

There was a strong third-party candidate in 1968 just as today there is Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., and Democrats are doing all they can to obstruct his access to ballots. The Biden Administration recently again denied RFK Jr.’s customary request for Secret Service protection, forcing his campaign to divert millions of dollars to spend on security.

More bad news for Biden arrived on Monday when the U.S. Supreme Court denied a petition to review a ban in Texas on no-excuse mail-in voting by those under 65 years old. Ballot-box stuffing through the mails, with unverified signatures, is how Biden claimed victory in Georgia, Michigan, and Pennsylvania in 2020, but the High Court just allowed states to rein in early voting abuse.

Ending America’s involvement in foreign war, which in 1968 was Vietnam, is a pivotal issue among young voters. Pushing through Congress a $61 billion package to extend the war in Ukraine for as long as it takes,” as he promised, Biden has made himself the pro-war candidate.

The only member of Congress born in Ukraine, Rep. Victoria Spartz (R-IN), voted against this bill that pours more fuel on that fire without spending a dollar on our own border security. Rep. Spartz, who faces challengers in her primary on May 7, tweeted her opposition to the America Last uniparty on X.

A uniparty in Washington is failing the American people,” Rep. Spartz observed. “I spoke on the floor in support of my amendment to eliminate an additional blank check of $16B to @POTUS Biden hidden in this bill by increasing the emergency presidential authorities to spend for any foreign country or international organization - ANY - true blank check,” she added.

In other words, the bill just passed by the Republican-controlled House includes a $16 billion handout to Biden to spend however he likes, much of which could be used for political gain. One recent “national security” project by the Biden Administration is to “train at least 200 LGBTQI+ community leaders … with preference given to trans and intersex community leaders” to advance their ideology in India.

Sen. JD Vance (R-OH) has shown it is impossible for Ukraine to win this war against Russia, so the continued funding delays peace. Sen. Vance explained in an op-ed in the New York Times that “Russia has nearly four times the population of Ukraine” and “Ukraine needs upward of half a million new recruits,” while the “average Ukrainian soldier is roughly 43 years old” and already fatigued from 2 years in battle.

Ukraine lacks four million 155-millimeter artillery shells. But after doubling our capacity, we produce only 360,000 annually, which is less than one-tenth of what would offset Russia’s 5-to-1 artillery advantage.

Rep. Spartz points out that only $13.8 billion of the Ukraine package passed by the House will actually go toward direct military aid. Lobbyists, globalists, Leftists, and well-connected insiders in Washington and Kiev will get much of this $61 billion package.

The presidential election in Ukraine scheduled for March 31 was canceled by Zelensky to remain in power indefinitely, so it is unclear how many Ukrainians even support his government.

George Washington warned Americans against entanglement in foreign conflicts, in his Farewell Address published in 1796. Yet on Saturday Democrat congressmen were waving Ukrainian flags in the House of Representatives to celebrate deepening American involvement in that unwinnable war.

History and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government,” Washington warned Americans in words probably drafted by his brilliant aide, Alexander Hamilton. “A passionate attachment of one nation for another produces a variety of evils,” they prophetically cautioned.

Perhaps the House Democrats who unanimously voted for the Ukraine package privately realize that billions of it could support partisan liberal goals. It would not be a surprise if a chunk of it is routed through lobbyists and others toward electing liberals or enacting their state ballot initiatives throughout America this Fall.

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, April 16, 2024

Federal Judges Side with Transgender Agenda

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

On Tuesday a 2-1 Democrat majority of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit invalidated a good West Virginia law protecting girls’ sports against invasion by male-bodied transgender students. The Richmond-based tribunal held that West Virginia’s Save Women’s Sports Act violates the federal Title IX law, which was enacted to protect girls’ sports, and also that West Virginia’s protection of girls’ sports may further violate the Constitution.

The Biden-appointed judge who wrote this absurd decision repeatedly used the propaganda term “sex assigned at birth,” as if sex were arbitrary and merely “assigned” to a newborn. On the contrary, biological science teaches that sex is determined long prior to birth, and does not change.

The transgender issue is boiling over in the courts. The U.S. Supreme Court, after earlier dodging this same transgender case and at least two others, sat on an emergency application by Idaho for an unusually long time of nearly two months before rendering a decision Monday that ducked the substance of a conservative Idaho law.

Two dozen states, including Idaho, have enacted laws protecting children against transgender operations and treatment, while the Supreme Court sidesteps the issue. Most of these laws have been challenged in federal courts by groups pushing the trans agenda, and the day after last Christmas a Clinton-appointed judge ordered a sweeping injunction blocking enforcement of Idaho HB 71.

But rather than affirm the authority of states to protect vulnerable children against irrevocable medical interventions, the Supreme Court instead rendered merely a procedural decision that cautioned against overly broad injunctions. In splintered opinions that Chief Justice Roberts refused to join, the Court reined in the Idaho federal district court without addressing the substance of the law.

There are billions of dollars at stake in profits from medical interventions for transgender purposes, and anyone in higher education who criticizes this lucrative field would risk losing career opportunities. By a wide margin, the most pro-transgender jurisdiction in our country is Washington, D.C., which might explain why the GOP-controlled House and Supreme Court have been so weak on this issue.

Three years ago Arkansas was the first state to ban transgender procedures on children, yet federal courts have still not allowed its good law to take effect. In an en banc sitting of 10 judges on the Eighth Circuit last Thursday to review this law, nearly all of the Republican-appointed judges were unwilling to ask substantive questions of the ACLU attorney for the transgender plaintiff.

With Republican-appointed judges silent as though on the sidelines, the questioning was dominated by the court’s most liberal member, Obama-appointed Judge Jane Kelly, who apparently thinks the Arkansas law somehow discriminates on the basis of sex. Such a ruling by the court would trigger the difficult-to-satisfy standard of heightened scrutiny, by which legislation is typically invalidated.

Leftists who deny sex differences try to invalidate laws they don’t like by concocting arguments that they are discriminatory. Meanwhile the transgender culture holds a grip on D.C., and on most federal courts which depend on liberal law schools for their clerks.

On Friday, the Democrat governor of Kansas vetoed a bill protecting minors against transgender treatments and surgeries, even though a similar bill has passed in half of our country, overriding the governor’s veto in four states. Laws enacted in Kentucky and Tennessee were upheld by an appellate court, while a similar law in Alabama was reinstated by a different appellate court because the district court applied an incorrect standard to block it.

Republicans have a veto-proof majority in the Kansas state senate, but the vote will be close in its state house. The outcome may depend on which legislators happen to be in attendance on the day that an override vote is held there.

Trump held a spectacular rally on Saturday evening in northeast Pennsylvania, considered by Biden to be his backyard where he grew up. There is even a President Biden Expressway in nearby Scranton, although a petition to restore the highway’s original name has attracted 17,000 signatures.

Trump attracted a vast overflow crowd on the chilly evening, withstanding a blustery wind that created challenges for Trump’s airplane to land there. Trump scored many points talking about energy, explaining how Biden’s war on coal and oil have caused runaway inflation and hurt many in Pennsylvania.

Trump courageously spoke out against the trans agenda, and vowed to cut off funding of schools that impose transgender indoctrination on students. Trump included the trans agenda along with critical race theory as propaganda which the federal government should not be funding.

Trump is the first major candidate to pledge to defund schools that mislead our children with transgender and other leftist ideologies. It is increasingly necessary to use the power of the purse to stop the transgender train.

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, April 9, 2024

Double Whammy Against the Trans Agenda

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The transgender movement received an unexpected setback from two very different authorities on Monday. Pope Francis, who has been applauded by liberals in many other contexts, declared that efforts to change a person’s biological sex are unacceptable as an affront to human dignity, while the leading association governing sports at 250 small colleges rejected allowing biological males to compete in women’s sports.

This double whammy came as the transgender movement had been riding high. The media had promoted a statement by Dawn Staley, the women’s basketball coach who led her South Carolina Gamecocks to an undefeated 38-0 championship season, that so-called transgender women (a.k.a men) should be allowed to compete in women’s basketball.

The sport of basketball is a good illustration of how wrong it would be to allow men to invade women’s sports. The best-ever college women’s basketball player, Iowa’s Caitlin Clark, is “only” 6 feet tall, but the average men’s basketball player is at least 6-6 and some are over 7 feet tall.

Would that six-inch-plus difference in average height be a fair match-up? Of course not, and no amount of testosterone reduction or other gender changing procedures can offset such an innate disparity between men and women athletes.

The 20-0 vote by the governing body of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) to prohibit biological males from competing in women’s sports is eminently reasonable. The NCAA should soon follow its lead and stop the insanity of allowing biological men to compete in women’s sports.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimated in 2019 that 1.8% of high school students, or roughly 275,000, disagree with their own biological sex. Thousands of them compete as athletes.

Today a desire for accolades, scholarships, publicity, and lucrative compensation for NIL (name, image, and likeness) motivate millions of athletes. Some would do anything to win, including changing their gender.

The clarity of this new ban on unfair participation by biological men in women’s sports by the NAIA was met with disdain by the liberal media, who have outsized influence over the NCAA and pro sports due to lucrative television contracts. Most NAIA members are Christian colleges, while some are public institutions.

The Pope did not refer specifically to sports, but spoke broadly in general terms to prohibit all transgender interventions: “Desiring a personal self-determination, as gender theory prescribes, apart from this fundamental truth that human life is a gift, amounts to a concession to the age-old temptation to make oneself God.”

Officially entitled “Dignitas Infinita,” which is Latin for “Infinite Dignity,” the Vatican announcement was developed over a period of more than five years and reflects many prior papal statements affirming the reality that we are all created male and female. It condemns transgender operations and treatments, as part of its rejection of all modern degradations of human dignity including abortion.

The Pope’s message decries how “in recent decades, attempts have been made to introduce new rights that are neither fully consistent with those originally defined nor always acceptable. They have led to instances of ideological colonization, in which gender theory plays a central role; the latter is extremely dangerous since it cancels differences in its claim to make everyone equal.”

The reference to gender theory as ideological colonization is a tip of the hat to the booming African churches, which strongly resist efforts today by liberal Europeans and Americans to “colonize” them with leftwing propaganda. African Christians have overwhelmingly rejected social agendas promoted by liberal elites from the U.S. and Europe.

The greatest possible difference that exists between living beings” is the “sexual difference” between male and female, this papal document confirms. “This foundational difference is not only the greatest imaginable difference but is also the most beautiful and most powerful of them. In the male-female couple, this difference achieves the most marvelous of reciprocities.”

It thus becomes the source of that miracle that never ceases to surprise us: the arrival of new human beings in the world,” this Catholic document continues. “All attempts to obscure reference to the ineliminable sexual difference between man and woman are to be rejected.”

It follows that any sex-change intervention, as a rule, risks threatening the unique dignity the person has received from the moment of conception.” This is a full stop for Leftists, medical universities, and law schools that are pushing hard for transgender operations and treatments, often at taxpayer expense.

In response, Biden’s press secretary reiterated his full support of the transgender agenda. But Biden is on the wrong side of 62 million American Catholics, many Christian colleges, nearly all African churches, and female student-athletes everywhere, and this issue may be one reason why polls show young supporters of Biden fleeing to the Republican side.

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, April 2, 2024

Reversing the Birth Rate Decline

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Cultures as different as Italy and South Korea are facing the same crisis: declining birth rates that have fallen far below what is needed to sustain a population and an economy.

Italy just reported another drop in its birth rate to its record low, decreasing by a startling 34.2% since 2008. There were nearly twice as many deaths as births in Italy last year, and the average number of children per woman has declined to only 1.2, far below the 2.1 necessary for a population to survive.

Every year I look at the birthrates and it’s kind of depressing,” Elon Musk told Italian prime minister Giorgia Meloni in Rome last year. “One can’t depend on other countries for immigration. Italy is the people of Italy. Please make more Italians.”

South Korea, a prosperous nation with more Christians than any other faith, is in panic mode as its birth rate per woman fell to only 0.72 in 2023 and is projected to fall further this year. The country we saved in the Korean War is on a path to self-destruction by failing to have enough children.

Measures being considered in South Korea are instructive because the United States is on a similar course, as our birth rate has continued to fall since Obama was elected president in 2008. Young women are the demographic most influenced by political ads, and billions have been spent by the Left in promoting every alternative other than starting a family and having children.

CBS News recently reported that a South Korean company Booyoung is providing employees with a bonus of $75,000 for each new child that they parent. South Korean tax law allows companies to treat such bonuses as business expenses up to that amount, while American tax law generally fails to incentivize having and raising children.

Booyoung Chairman Lee Joong-keun candidly predicts that if the birth rate decline in South Korea continues, then “Korea will face a crisis of national existence 20 years from now, including a decline in the economically productive population and a shortage of defense personnel to ensure national security and maintain order.”

The United States is not far behind. The American birth rate declined by nearly 25% between 2008 and 2022, to only about 1.6 per woman today.

Demographic trends are very difficult to reverse, as children from small families tend later to have small families or no children themselves. Political leaders in Italy and many other countries recognize the plummeting birth rates as a crisis.

Taiwan’s birth rate has fallen to only 0.87, far less than half of the 2.1 children per woman needed just to survive long-term. Although a conservative country, Taiwan has turned to liberal approaches such as more government-funded child care, which have never succeeded in boosting the birth rate.

Beginning in 2019, Hungary addressed its declining births by providing a $30,000 loan to newlyweds that is forgiven if they have three children, which makes more sense than Biden’s trillion dollars in student loans. Conservative policies by Viktor Orb├ín, the pro-Trump leader of Hungary, have increased its birth rate, which used to be the lowest in the European Union when he started and now exceeds the EU average.

Trump and the Republican Party could lead in promoting policies that encourage American families to have more children. Trump himself has a beautiful family with five children and ten grandchildren, and our country would benefit by hearing about pro-family childbearing as a campaign issue.

A pro-birth message fits well with the Republican platform of creating good jobs for Americans, which occurred from 1980 through 2007. The Obama-Biden policy of shipping our jobs to other countries while allowing in a flood of immigrants to take jobs here has been a factor in decreasing our birth rate.

Larger families typically require a good job for the husband as breadwinner in order to create a stable family life. That model, featured in many popular television shows from 1950 through the 1980s, has disappeared in the economy and in Hollywood.

Western liberals, led by then-First Lady Laura Bush, criticized Afghanistan during the U.S. occupation for not sending more women to higher education, but our birth rate is only one-third of Afghanistan’s. By contrast women comprise nearly 60% of U.S. college students, far outnumbering men there while racking up over a trillion dollars in student debt.

Studies show that, on average, the more time that women spend in higher education, the less likely they want to have children. Students are misled into thinking that advancement in educational degrees and corporate America will be more rewarding to them than having children, when it is family life that brings greater long-term benefits.

Elon Musk, one of the wealthiest men in the world, talks as much about the need to increase the birth rate as he does about own successes. Most world leaders, other than Democrat politicians, agree.

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.