Congressional negotiators have reached a bipartisan agreement to keep the government open, and the House could vote on it as soon as today. But it provides far less funding for a border barrier than President Trump requested.
Political analysts were quick to pain this as a defeat for Trump that could damage his reelection bid, but they are selling his supporters short. They’ve seen how hard Trump fought to keep his promise against a barrage of hostile media, an intransigent Democratic leadership, and Congressional Republicans who refused to back him fully. I really don’t believe they’re going to blame him for our continuing lax border security. In fact, if anyone is harmed by this, I think it might be the Democrats. They turned on both the DACA recipients they claim to champion and their previous support for border barriers for no justifiable reason other than to try to harm Trump. I don't see how that plays well with most voters who want compromise and immigration laws enforced, not self-serving political games.
Trump still hasn’t said whether he’ll sign or veto the agreement. But he did promise on Twitter that the wall will be built and is already under way, and he said he’ll be getting almost $23 billion for border security. He didn’t specify if he plans to use emergency funds or where that funding will come from. But with the conviction of Mexican drug lord El Chapo, there has been an intriguing suggestion for how to spend the $14 billion seized from his drug empire. In a way, that would sort of result in Mexico paying for the wall, indirectly.
Here’s some news of the rare “man bites dog” variety: President Trump thanked MSNBC for actually reporting that after conducting 200 interviews and reviewing 300,000 documents over two years, the Senate Intelligence Committee concluded that there is no direct evidence of conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election.
Of course, the talking heads there emphasized that it’s not over. We still have Robert Mueller and Rep. Adam Schiff is determined to keep sifting through horse manure until he finds a pony. And some die-hard Never Trumpers will dismiss anything the Senate Committee says because it’s run by Republicans so they must be “in on the conspiracy.” At this link is a video clip from Tucker Carlson’s show about all these conspiracy theories, the latest being that Trump is being blackmailed by Russia, which would explain why he’s being tougher on Russia than Obama was.
I am sure that even if Mueller issues a report completely exonerating Trump and all his people, there will still be a large group of Americans who will fume, “Well, they got to Mueller, too.” That’s the thing about all conspiracy theories: they never die out completely because to true believers, they can never be disproved. Anything that seems to disprove the conspiracy simply gets absorbed into the ever-expanding theory as “the conspirators attempting to throw us off the track.” Long after the 2016 election is a footnote in history (and it’s already on its way), there will still be NeverTrumpers, probably holding conventions where they can pour over the Mueller Report and debate how the conspirators were able to “get” to MSNBC.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell can smell blood in the water (well, maybe not blood, but he smells something floating in there), so he plans to give the Democrats exactly what their most strident leftwing base wants: a vote on the so-called “Green New Deal.”
Since so many Democratic Congress members and presidential hopefuls have voiced support for it, he wants to give them the opportunity to go on record as voting for this massive wad of socialist wealth redistribution, crushing debt, government takeover of every aspect of life, scientifically and logistically impossible fantasies, and extermination of flatulent cows.
Is it a dirty trick? Only if you consider it unfair to expect your opponents to actually stand behind their own legislation, the way President Trump fights for the things he promised, like a border wall and new trade deals, despite negative press and political consequences.
But Sen. Ed Markey (one of the bill’s co-creators along with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez) is outraged. He seems to think that allowing the Senate to vote on a bill he proposed is a dirty rotten trick. He tweeted, “Don’t let Mitch McConnell fool you: this is nothing but an attempt to sabotage the movement we are building. He wants to silence your voice so Republicans don’t have to explain why they are climate change deniers. McConnell wants this to be the end, this is just the beginning.”
(As an aside: I don’t know anyone who is a “climate denier,” a ludicrous term invented by people who hope to silence legitimate questions about hyperbolic environmental claims by tarring questioners with the onus of Holocaust deniers. Everyone agrees that there is a climate, and it’s constantly changing. The debate is over how much of current change is due to human influence, whether it’s as apocalyptic as the “climate exaggerators” claim, whether the potential gains they claim would be achieved are worth the pain imposing them would inflict, and other serious issues that won’t fit on a bumper sticker. Finally, you should know that anyone who declares, “The science is settled and can never be questioned!” just admitted he has no idea how the scientific method works. There, Senator, I just explained my position. Now explain yours.)
Markey is 72, so he doesn’t even have AOC’s excuse of being young and naïve for believing that all problems can be solved if only the government were all-powerful and had its money printing presses running 24/7. Why even propose a bill or resolution if you think that voting on it would amount to “sabotage”? Frankly, I can’t think of any better way to sabotage the growing “green” movement than to bring forth this piece of patent lunacy that was so laughable, it had to be yanked off the Internet within hours (you silenced your own voice so you didn’t have to explain why you’re a reality-denier.)
I think you don’t want a vote on it because you know that your colleagues will say they back it, but they aren’t dumb enough to actually put that down on the Congressional Record.
Not when even someone as far-left as California Gov. Gavin Newsom just threw in the towel on the feasibility of connecting just two cities with high speed rail by 2033, and you’re calling for replacing air travel by connecting every city in America by high-speed rail within 10 years.
…Or when union leaders are warning that it will make it impossible for working Americans to put food on the table (certainly not beef – maybe “Green New Deal” means we’ll all have to eat nothing but kale salads. I’m amazed that they forgot to include that.)…
Even New York Times writer David Brooks blasted the “Green New Deal” as the latest in a long string of elitist schemes dating back to the 1880s, to try to remake society by force through vast, centralized government power, and all of them have been massive failures…
Give Mr. Brooks credit for the best observation of the day about the arrogance of the “Green New Deal’s” creators: They “assume that technocratic planners can master the movements of 328 million Americans and design a transportation system so that ‘air travel stops becoming necessary.’ (This is from people who couldn’t even organize the successful release of their own background document.)”
Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez, who has had his own tangles with the law, is assailing President Trump for having the effrontery to refer to certain people as “criminals” simply because they are in the US illegally and have committed crimes such as drunk driving. I assume he thinks illegal entry and DUI are merely “foibles” or “boo-boo’s” and don’t rise to the level of being actual crimes. And judging by his moral code, maybe they don’t.
I’m sure you see the flaws in his argument, but “Huckabee” writer Pat Reeder asked to respond personally to this one. Here are his comments:
I’ll set aside the argument over whether being an “illegal immigrant” is illegal, since that’s both idiotic and self-evident (BTW, you’re not a legitimate “asylum seeker” if you cry “Asylum!” only after you’re apprehended trying to sneak in illegally.) But when Sen. Menendez brushes off drunk driving as a nothingburger charge, he’s leaning hard on my sore spot.
My late father was the most intelligent, accomplished person I’ve ever known. He could do anything from replacing a car engine to fixing electronics to building a house from the ground up. But one thing he never accomplished was to attend college. That’s because when he was in high school, a drunk driver killed his father, leaving him as the family breadwinner. He had to go into the Army, then work to support his mother and little brother. With his talents, who knows how successful he could have been with a degree. I was always told that my grandfather, whom I am named after, was a similarly remarkable man. Of course, I’ll never know, since I never got to know my grandfather because he was KILLED BY A DRUNK DRIVER!
Perhaps, Senator, you’ve heard of MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving.) They had to form an organization and lobby for years to get legislators such as yourself to take drunk driving seriously. I thought they’d accomplished that goal, but here you are, setting the cause back half a century.
The one good thing to come of that drunk who shattered my family from behind the wheel of a 4,000-pound bullet was that he made me into a lifelong teetotaler. I would never take the chance of allowing myself to be impaired and bring the kind of grief and devastation to anyone else’s family that a drunk driver brought to mine.
I would write more about how disgusting and reprehensible I find your comments, Senator, but it’s hard when I’m typing this solely with my two middle fingers.
Minnesota’s controversial new Rep. Ilhan Omar is making a lot of news that can’t be making her constituents all that happy. Speaker Pelosi is under fire for the way she handled Omar’s anti-Semitic comments…
…President Trump is demanding that she resign from Congress over them…
…Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who has her own history of questionable comments about Israel, claims she’s “proud” of Omar for speaking out against the influence of PAC money…
…And at this link, George Mason University law Prof. David E. Bernstein walks us through this latest anti-Semitic incident involving Omar to explain why trying to brush it off as a legitimate criticism of PAC money is a disingenuous spin job. It’s interesting that the same wing of the Democrats who gave us terms like “check your privilege” and “micro-aggression” can’t spot their own anti-Semitism when it’s staring them in the face.
Finally, Rep. Omar wouldn’t already be facing calls for her resignation if she spent less time making incendiary comments and more time paying attention to her legislative duties. Then maybe she wouldn’t be simultaneously decrying the poor TSA workers going without their paychecks during the shutdown and demanding that the entire Department of Homeland Security that employs them be defunded.
Openly Christian movie star Chris Pratt had the perfect response to actress Ellen Page’s accusation that his church is “infamously anti-LGBTQ” people.
Sadly, this is a common tactic on the left: the attempt to attack people of faith by misrepresenting their Biblical views of sin as being hatred and bigotry against the sinner, which is the opposite of what Christianity teaches. It’s a transparent attempt to redefine traditional morality as “hate” so that religious groups can be slandered as “hate groups” (if you think that’s paranoia, then you need to learn more about the Southern Poverty Law Center and its unscrupulous tactics.)
Frankly, I’m seeing most of the hate and bigotry these days coming from the left, much of it aimed at Christians (and Jews). But here’s the good news: we Christians will forgive you for your hated. But we do expect you to “go and sin no more.” Or at least to try to.
Laura Ainsworth replies to reader comment about "far-right radicals"
First the letter, then Laura’s reply...
From Walt W:
Wow, what can one say after reading this article and assorted comments from the readers who’ve already posted regarding Roger Stone’s arrest by the FBI.
It appears most every one who reads this site has succumbed to the extreme far right radical agenda including all its attendant conspiracy theories and related hysteria. Many reader comments continue to parrot many of the so called “alternative facts” that have already been repeatedly discredited by ample solid, indisputable evidence already shown in prior print, audio and video proof sources, but still refuse to accept the proof that is so readily and easily available.
Fortunately, not all readers of these various Huckabee columns, who have at many times begun to express opposing viewpoints to some of them, have lost the ability to read, analyze, assess, compare and think through the article commentary in order to make their own intelligent judgment. At the same time, it has become hugely troubling for our country to see how many others still resort to just blindly repeating what they have been told to believe without thinking for themselves.
My prayer daily is that the Lord will bring some sanity to the very few leaders who actually control the decision making process in this country. That includes all of them “on both sides of the isle”, with plenty of blame to share on both sides. Radical agendas, on either side of the rhetorical arguments, benefit no one other than those proposing them. They certainly do not benefit our country or the very vast majority of our citizens.
Wow, what can one say after reading this condescending letter –- it’s hard to know where to start. As a longtime writer/researcher for Gov. Huckabee, I decided to answer this letter personally instead of passing it along to him, as he is much too nice to say what needs to be said. I, on the other hand, am not nearly as nice as he is, so I thought I would take a crack at it.
I, along with the one other staff writer who works with me for the Governor, can proudly say that in all the years we have been doing this, we have not had to retract ONE THING of any consequence that we have put into print. There might have been something minor like the spelling of someone’s name, a job title, etc., but NEVER have we been taken in by the hoaxes, non-stories, what-if’s and gigantic mistakes that have plagued the “real journalists” (ha) at CNN and other “news” sources that you no doubt frequent. Yes, this is an opinion site, but it is informed opinion, based on fact. We get our facts right. And I don’t mean opinion masquerading as facts, as you’ll find with some of the leftist “fact-checking” sites. To the very best of our ability, we base our opinion on what we know to be true.
Also, we are not “far right radicals” by any definition I have ever heard. There are some readers you could accurately call far-right who leave comments for Gov. Huckabee, and we don’t fact-check the comments any more than liberal sites fact-check theirs –- it would be impossible –- but this website is not “radical.” Not unless by “radical” you mean supportive of equal justice under the law, the Bill Of Rights, the same level of border security that other developed countries have, biological gender as determined by DNA, and newborn babies being able to leave the delivery room alive. Yes, we go out on a limb for radical things like that.
And our readers, in their current and very understandable state of frustration, cannot be expected to know what can be done about the problems we address; some of their suggestions are unworkable for sure, and we are aware of that. These people are mostly venting as they watch some of our precious freedoms circling the drain, and they are welcome to do it here. Most of them are not constitutional scholars (actually, some are, as well as members of law enforcement and the military), but it doesn’t take a law degree to see that the FBI needs reining in. Even the most esteemed legal minds in the country who recognize these problems do not always agree on how to handle them.
Because of the nature of social media and hyper-partisan blogs and websites, it’s challenging for those on both left and right to avoid encountering misinformation, which is rampant. We work to make sure the Governor’s website is a trusted source of facts and common-sense opinion. (And one doesn't look in the "comments" section of any website for that.) Your letter, with its claim that there is “indisputable” evidence (I assume you mean for Trump/Russia collusion), shows that you are just as misinformed as the readers you look down on with such disdain.
That’s because if there’s a “conspiracy theory” going around, it’s got to be the one on the left about the Trump campaign conspired with Russians to win the 2016 election. Sorry, we don’t subscribe to that one. If you do, I think you are going to be disappointed when it finally, finally becomes evident that the Russians were acting on their own. The Senate Intelligence Committee has just released its report showing no evidence that there was any “collusion” between Russia and the Trump campaign.
To that, I’m sure you’d say, “Ah, but those are the Republicans.” Okay, then, the current chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff, has repeatedly hinted that he HAS proof of this, though in recent months he has appeared to soft-pedal that notion. Where is that evidence? Surely somebody would have leaked it by now. Let’s see it. Dear lord, we’ve got Democrats going on TV suggesting that the President is a traitor who should be hanged like Benedict Arnold.
When you refer to “ample, solid, indisputable evidence,” it seems that you yourself are one of those who are “just blindly repeating what they have been told to believe without thinking for themselves.” If Mueller has any evidence of actual collusion, he will show it, but he hasn’t yet. If he can prove the Trump campaign did this, then that changes the conversation. Otherwise, you can go whistle up a rope. (See, the Governor might not tell you that, but I will.)
We at mikehuckabee.com have been doing a deep dive into this for the past two years. We WANT to know if there was real evidence of Trump conspiring with Russia. No President should get into office that way. We’re not trying to live in a dream world –- that appears to be where those on the left live, and we do not want to live anywhere NEAR them. Or even go to dinner parties with them if politics is to be discussed.
As far as I can see, it’s those on the left who refuse to look at hard evidence –- of Hillary Clinton’s lawbreaking. Have you not seen the “ample, solid, indisputable evidence” of that? There’s been plenty of it, from James Comey’s own mouth, in fact. And it sure appears that if anyone was trading favors with Vladimir Putin, it was her.
One thing you’re right about: there’s blame to go around. Both sides have their idiotic radical fringes. On some conservative sites, I’ve seen comments that deeply concern me and make me hate to think anyone would consider me as being on the same “side.” But on the left, it’s different and much worse: the radical idiots have gone mainstream. I could give you countless examples of this, but, really, it’s not news.
That’s about it. If you’re really concerned about radicals, Walt, I suggest you sniff them out someplace else. Try sniffing over to the left, where most of them live.
And now, to show we’re even-handed, here’s a reader comment from the conservative side, followed by my reply...
From Gail H:
As a conservative, I read your posts –- however, I am puzzled about the inclusion of the story of Roger and Nydia Stone. Upon reading about this couple and their lifestyle –- politically and morally –- on other sites, it seems odd seeing their names on your site. If you are going to trumpet conservative values on your site, perhaps their inclusion and their story was a decision made at a lower level?? (pun intended) While the FBI raid was obviously over the top and I DO resent the taxpayer money spent on it.....didn't really need to read about all this on your site. Thank you.
Gail, if I were a pastor like Gov. Huckabee, I’m sure I could find the perfect Bible verse for this situation. Yes, there have been some reports of Roger and Nydia Stone concerning what they may or may not have done in their private lives. I don’t know if they are true or made up, but that’s immaterial here. Lady Justice is supposed to be wearing a blindfold –- it’s equal justice FOR ALL. Are we supposed to stand by and let the FBI run over people we don’t otherwise approve of? If they can do it to Roger and Nydia, they can do it to you and me.
I assume you voted for President Trump; has he always lived up to those high moral standards? Um, no. Really, Gail, it doesn’t seem to me that the Governor “trumpets” about morals on this site. But maybe a “trumpet” is something like a “dog whistle” –- I just can’t seem to hear it.
PS. I asked Gov. Huckabee what Bible verse he would suggest, and he said Matthew 7:1 --- "Judge not lest ye be judged."