February 7, 2024

Wednesday: Below the Fold

Haley loses big to “None of These Candidates,” Cruz calls for McConnell’s walking papers, Iran shrugs off Biden’s strikes, and more.


  • Haley loses big to “None of These Candidates”: Yesterday was something of an embarrassment for Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley, as nearly 63% of Republican primary voters in Nevada marked their ballots with “None of These Candidates” instead of voting for her — even though she was essentially running unopposed. Where was Donald Trump? He wasn’t on the ballot, opting instead to take part in the Nevada caucuses tomorrow, where the state’s 26 delegates will be awarded. Why have both a primary and a caucus just days apart? Great question. Three years ago, state Democrats passed a law to move from a caucus format to a primary format, which — not surprisingly, given the Democrats’ penchant for ballot stuffing — allows for mail-in and early voting. The GOP declined to play along, though, saying that it would only award delegates during its caucus. Haley didn’t campaign in Nevada, and she’s accused the state GOP of manipulating the system in favor of Trump. “Even Donald Trump knows that when you play penny slots, the house wins,” said a Haley spokesperson. “We didn’t bother to play a game rigged for Trump. We’re full steam ahead in South Carolina and beyond.” As for Trump, he noted: “It was a bad night for Nikki Haley. Losing by almost 30 points in Nevada to ‘None of These Candidates.’ Watch, she’ll soon claim victory!” In a related story, embattled Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, the longest-serving RNC chair in modern history, has announced that she’ll step down after the South Carolina primary later this month. Based on the GOP’s election results in recent years, we’d say, “Good riddance.”

  • Cruz calls for McConnell’s walking papers: It’s said that success has a thousand fathers but failure is an orphan, and the Senate’s long-secretive bipartisan “border” bill is no exception. Yesterday, we noted that the proposed legislation, whose language was finally made public Sunday night, was doomed to failure, and it appears that Senate Republicans are blaming their leader for the fiasco. Texas Senator Ted Cruz called for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to resign from his leadership position amid backlash to the Ukraine-Israel-Gaza funding bill disguised as a border bill. “I think it is,” said Cruz when asked whether it’s time for McConnell to go. As National Review reports: “Cruz, a longtime critic of McConnell, was one of ten GOP senators who opposed the Kentucky Republican’s reelection bid for Senate minority leader in November 2022. Cruz criticized McConnell for overstaying his welcome in the Senate and playing a key role in the negotiated terms of the border deal, with Senators Rick Scott of Florida, Mike Lee of Utah, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, J.D. Vance of Ohio, Roger Marshall of Kansas, and Eric Schmitt of Missouri backing Cruz’s position.” No word on whether Oklahoma Senator James Lankford will face any serious repercussions for his role in helping to craft the abominable legislation.

  • They’re not sending us their best: Those who value free speech and free expression should be troubled by the arrest of a 26-year-old Palestinian “migrant” from North Africa who apparently stole the American and Israeli flags from a homeowner’s yard in suburban New York City and then pummeled the man while yelling anti-Semitic slurs at him. As Fox News reports: “‘These are not the type of people who come to America like my great-grandparents did, like your great-grandparents and grandparents and parents who came to America to kiss the ground,’ Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman told reporters Tuesday. ‘Instead, they spit on our flag, they trample on our values and they commit crimes. And they do so at taxpayer expense.’” The “alleged” perpetrator, Bechir Lehbeib, says he entered the U.S. at — surprise! — the Mexican border in Arizona over the summer and says he’s seeking asylum. Elsewhere in unwanted illegal immigrant news, four of the group of dirtbags who curb-stomped two New York City cops and then gave the dirty double-bird to the American people were arrested in Arizona on Monday, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement. “It’s frustrating; it never should have happened, and you don’t put a hand on a police officer anywhere in the state of New York and get away with it,” said an opportunistically tough New York Governor Kathy Hochul, who no doubt senses the public outrage over the assault and is now engaged in damage control.

  • Fiftyfold increase in illegal Chinese nationals: Our open-border nation reached another grim and infuriating milestone today, as we’ve hit one million border encounters since the 2024 fiscal year began in October. Oddly, that number includes nearly 20,000 Chinese illegals, which is almost as many as were encountered all last year. (For comparison, the number of Chinese nationals encountered was 2,176 in FY 2022 and 450 in FY 2021. This gives Chinese nationals the dubious distinction of being the fastest-growing group of illegal border-crossers.) As CBS News reports: “Some of the migrants made a grueling journey through Central America with dusty backpacks … but we noticed middle class migrants from China arriving with rolling bags. They told us they took flights all the way to Mexico. Some flew from China to Ecuador, because it doesn’t require a visa for Chinese nationals. Then, [they] took flights to Tijuana, Mexico,” where they connected with human traffickers for the remainder of the trip. All of this points to the need for real border security, which must include a funded mandate for wall construction, the reestablishment of Trump’s Remain in Mexico policy for so-called asylum seekers, and the end of Joe Biden’s illegal and disastrous “catch and release” policy.

  • Iran shrugs off Biden’s strikes: After telegraphing to Iran for a week that he would hit back following the Iranian-backed strike that killed three U.S. soldiers, Joe Biden greenlighted a barrage of airstrikes over the weekend that targeted Iranian militia sites in Syria and Iraq. The result was some 40 people killed, but no significant Iranian individuals. Then, on Monday, another Iranian-backed drone strike in Syria killed six members of a U.S.-allied militia. So much for deterring Iran. “If the goal is to deter Iran, you’re failing miserably,” observed South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham. “If the goal is to protect American troops, you’re not achieving your goal.” He further noted that Iran is not afraid of the U.S. with Biden at the helm. And why should the mullahs be afraid? Biden has bent over backward to avoid actually holding Tehran to account in the apparent hope that he can resurrect Barack Obama’s failed Iran nuke deal.

  • Many hostages are dead, while Israel aid dies in House: Of the remaining 136 Israeli hostages that Hamas militants captured and brought into Gaza following their murderous October 7 attack on Israel, at least 32 are dead. Israeli military officials have informed family members of those hostages who have been confirmed dead, with the IDF noting that most of them were killed on the day of the attack. Hamas took a total of 240 hostages and has released less than half of them. Meanwhile, stateside, the House failed to pass a standalone $17.6 billion aid bill for Israel, falling short of the two-thirds majority needed for the legislation’s passage. Joe Biden had already promised to veto any standalone aid to Israel while disingenuously accusing Republicans of playing politics with support for Israel. Unfortunately, House Speaker Mike Johnson has been most handicapped by fellow Republican lawmakers who seemingly can’t recognize the forest for the trees and unify behind a common agenda.

  • Unprecedented — parent convicted for child’s school shooting: The mother of the Oxford, Michigan, high school student who attacked his school in November 2021, killing four and injuring 11 others, was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter on Tuesday. For the first time in U.S. history, a parent has been held criminally liable for their teenage child’s attack on a school. During the trial, it was shown that the assailant’s parents had been called into school on the day of the attack over concerns that their child needed mental healthcare right away. At the time, the parents stated that they would get him help but couldn’t do it then as they had to work, and the student remained at school. The father, who has been charged separately, gifted his son, who was 15 at the time of the attack, a 9mm handgun, which was the weapon that was subsequently used in the attack. In December, the school attacker was found guilty of first-degree premeditated murder and was sentenced to life in prison without parole.

  • Appeals court says mask-wearing is not a free speech issue: The Third Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday ruled that a New Jersey school board’s requirement that mandated mask-wearing during meetings during the COVID pandemic did not violate the First Amendment’s protection of free speech. The ruling deals with two related lawsuits raised in New Jersey against school board officials who refused to wear masks in school board meetings during the pandemic. In its ruling, the court stated: “A question shadowing suits such as these is whether there is a First Amendment right to refuse to wear a protective mask as required by valid health and safety orders put in place during a recognized public health emergency. Like all courts to address this issue, we conclude there is not.” The court explained: “Skeptics are free to — and did — voice their opposition through multiple means, but disobeying a masking requirement is not one of them. One could not, for example, refuse to pay taxes to express the belief that ‘taxes are theft.’ Nor could one refuse to wear a motorcycle helmet as a symbolic protest against a state law requiring them.”


  • House vote to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas fails, thwarted by Republican defections (AP)

  • Biden, after denying border crisis for years: “Only reason border is not secure is Donald Trump” (Daily Wire)

  • Biden’s latest climate rules crack down on manufacturing, ignoring industry warnings of economic devastation (Fox News)

  • Hamas proposes 135-day Gaza truce with complete Israeli withdrawal — including freeing all hostages (New York Post)

  • Alarming footage appears to show President Biden forgetting Hamas’s name when asked about hostages held in Gaza (New York Post)

  • Elon Musk helps Gina Carano sue Disney for firing her after Internet smear campaign (The Federalist)

  • Dozens of NYC government employees arrested by feds, most single-day bribery arrests in DOJ history (Daily Wire)

  • New lawsuit challenges New York’s Second Amendment ban for nonresidents (Bearing Arms)

  • Squatters take over 1,200 homes in Atlanta, open illegal strip clubs, and terrorize neighbors (New York Post)

  • HHS says it has only two pages of scientific evidence backing its support for “gender-affirming care” (Daily Wire)

  • Humor: Study confirms 100% of men agree with Toby Keith that they should’ve been a cowboy (Babylon Bee)

For more editors’ choice headlines, click here.

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