Mid-Day Digest

May 7, 2019

THE FOUNDATION

“Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect every one who approaches that jewel.” —Patrick Henry (1788)

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IN TODAY’S EDITION

IN BRIEF

Booker’s Dangerous Shot at Gun Rights

As the nearly two dozen Democrats running for president in 2020 vie for media attention and advance the party’s overall strategy to assemble a collective constituency of dunces, they’re putting forward various proposals that are one part crazy and one part tyranny. Cory Booker’s gun proposal — the most restrictive in the field — is both.

The New Jersey senator released “Cory’s plan to end the gun violence epidemic.” Where does “gun violence” usually take place? Democrat-run urban poverty plantations, which are rampant with gangs and drugs. In other words, it’s a cultural and political problem (created by Democrat policies), not a gun problem.

Naturally, Booker all but ignores that, focusing instead on the tired litany of leftist gun measures aimed at law-abiding citizens. Universal background checks? Check. Ban “assault weapons”? Check. Microstamping? Check. Red flag laws? Check.

But three proposals stand out. The first isn’t exactly new, and that’s stripping gun manufacturers of legal immunity when a bad guy uses a gun to murder people. Practically this came into play back in March when some Newtown families won the ability to sue Remington — because a sociopath murdered his own mother, stole her gun, and then slaughtered 26 more people at Sandy Hook Elementary in 2012. That suit is pending.

Second is gun licensing (with training requirements), which Booker proposes for all gun owners and likens to driver’s licenses. “You need a license to drive a car,” he says. “You should need one to own a gun.” Aside from the state license versus federal license inconsistency, the more apt comparison is requiring a license for First Amendment rights to free speech or exercise of religion. Indeed, no other constitutional right requires a license. That’s because our rights are natural gifts of our Creator, not, as leftists believe, privileges conferred by the government.

Is training and learning gun safety a really good idea for gun owners? Yes. Is requiring it (with renewal every five years) to exercise a constitutional right the way to go? Nope. Moreover, Booker essentially calls for a national firearms registry (for guns and owners) and even refused to rule out punishment for the otherwise law-abiding citizen who declines to surrender banned firearms. Given the record of various bureaucracies targeting Americans for politically disfavored activities, or how such registries have worked out in countries like Venezuela, such a registry is self-evidently a terrible idea.

Finally, as if to illustrate that last point, Booker wants to “bring the fight to the NRA” by “calling on the IRS to investigate whether certain activities recently reported in the news media should lead to revocation of its tax-exempt status.” Those “activities” are unfortunate internal strife that Booker aims to exploit for political targeting reminiscent of the IRS’s targeting of the Tea Party. Booker wants to destroy the NRA because it’s the nation’s leading defender of the Second Amendment.

In short, don’t think for a minute the Second Amendment isn’t on the line in 2020.

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Dems Continue Beating a Dead Horse

The Left’s collusion narrative was proven a delusion, so why are Democrats still clinging to it? Well, technically they are no longer claiming the crime of collusion; they’ve shifted to an equally vacuous claim that President Donald Trump “obviously” engaged in obstruction of justice. Special Counsel Robert Mueller helped fuel this narrative by refusing to come to a conclusion on the question of obstruction, forcing Attorney General William Barr to make the call. The hope may have been that Barr would waffle over the question, igniting a whole new litany of questions to be spun by the Leftmedia against Trump while Democrats pounded the drum for yet another investigation. Anything to keep an air of criminality surrounding Trump through 2020.

However, Barr has proven to be a straight shooter who’s not afraid to thoughtfully apply the law as written. And therefore, he is dangerous. That’s why Democrats and their cohorts in the Leftmedia are determined to undercut his credibility. Case in point: The Washington Post in a second seemingly coordinated effort with Democrats in as many weeks, released a story Monday claiming “hundreds of former federal prosecutors assert” that “Trump would have been charged with obstruction were he not president.” It’s timed to precede Wednesday’s House vote on holding Barr in contempt.

The Post story highlights an online statement created by the leftist group Protect Democracy that has been signed by some 450 individuals with ties to Washington. The Post attempts to paint the group of signatories as individuals from across the political spectrum, but upon reviewing the list it becomes apparent that those who signed have one thing in common: They are anti-Trump. For example, one of the high-profile signers is Bill Weld, a former U.S. attorney, Reagan Justice Department official, and Massachusetts governor who just happens to be planning a primary challenge to Trump. No agenda there. Or take signer Paul Rosenzweig, who was a member of Ken Starr’s independent counsel team — never mind that Starr publicly supported Barr’s determination on obstruction.

Obviously, the Post is helping Democrats set the narrative, furthering the idea that Barr is a biased defender of Trump rather than an objective arbiter of law and order. This is also an attempt to provide cover for Mueller to throw shade on Barr when he comes to Congress to testify, further justifying Democrat claims that Barr is compromised and should resign.

So, again, why are Democrats continuing to pound the “Trump is a criminal” drum after Mueller’s report found no evidence to support such a conclusion? Do Democrats really believe that their Hate Trump platform is a winning strategy for 2020? While it certainly may play well with their base, it’s not a winning message for the majority of the country. However, there may be much more in play here than merely an election strategy.

The Washington establishment is unnerved by Barr. His no-nonsense approach cuts right through all the political doublespeak and spin to get to the facts and truth. He is a Columbo-type character whose unassuming manner hides a quick analytical mind. Furthermore, Democrats are scared because Barr, who has thus far refused to be manipulated by the elitists in the media and political class, is starting to dig into the whole deep-state conspiracy — the coup attempt by members of the Washington establishment to oust a duly elected president. This is the deeper reason for Democrats’ and the Leftmedia’s attempts to discredit Barr. They are worried he will blow open the whole sordid plot and go after the real conspirators.

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NYT: Trump Is Right About Border Crisis

“President Trump is right: There is a crisis at the southern border.” But don’t take our word for it. That was The New York Times in an editorial over the weekend. The editors noted that there are indeed “record numbers of Central American families” overwhelming the border and “fueling a humanitarian crisis of overcrowding, disease and chaos.” Notably, they explain, “The Border Patrol is now averaging 1,200 daily arrests, with many migrants arriving exhausted and sick.”

The Times states flatly, “Something needs to be done. Soon.” Welcome to the party. If it wasn’t for Trump Derangement Syndrome, the Leftmedia could have been reporting honestly on the border crisis the entire time. Instead, activist journalists at the Times and elsewhere have attempted to paint Trump as a racist and a bigot for his repeated calls to address the growing problem of illegal immigration.

Even so, while the Times recognizes that there is a crisis, the editors still focus only on strained resources to provide more facilities to house and care for the influx of illegals. The Times hasn’t quite come around to calling for enforcing the Rule of Law at the border — which would actually stem the tide of illegals creating the crisis in the first place.

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ON OUR WEBSITE TODAY

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.

TOP NEWS EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

  • CHINA SENDS IN THE BIG GUN: “China said Tuesday its top trade negotiator will visit the United States for talks with American counterparts this week even as Washington stepped up pressure with plans to hike tariffs and complaints that Beijing was backtracking on its commitments.” (Agence France-Presse)
  • CHINA HARNESSES NSA TECH: “A leading cybersecurity firm found evidence Chinese intelligence operatives repurposed National Security Agency (NSA) hacking technology in 2016 to attack American allies and private firms in Europe and Asia.” (The Hill)
  • TREASURY REBUFFS DEMOCRATS: “Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, in a letter Monday, denied House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal’s request for President Trump’s tax returns, saying the request lacked a ‘legitimate legislative purpose.’” (Fox News)
  • WITCH HUNTERS PURSUE CONTEMPT CHARGE: “The House Judiciary Committee will proceed with a vote to hold Attorney General William Barr in contempt of Congress on Wednesday, Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) confirmed late Monday, as the Justice Department attempts to fend off the effort ahead of a negotiating session with the Democratic-led committee on Tuesday.” (Politico)
  • SOLDIER PARDONED: “Trump signed an executive grant of clemency, a full pardon, for former Army 1st Lt. Michael Behenna, of Oklahoma… Behenna was convicted of unpremeditated murder in a combat zone after killing a suspected al Qaeda terrorist in Iraq. He was paroled in 2014 and had been scheduled to remain on parole until 2024.” (CBS News)
  • WATERMARK PRO-LIFE WIN IN GEORGIA: “Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp has signed into law the state’s [‘Living Infants Fairness and Equality (LIFE) Act,’] a piece of legislation that would prohibit abortion after a heartbeat is detected in an embryo. That is something that usually happens between five and six weeks into a women’s pregnancy. … At the bill signing, Governor Kemp recognized that the bill will likely be ‘challenged in the court of law’ but that Georgia will ‘always continue to fight for life.’” (CBS News)
  • A REPUBLIC — IF YOU CAN KEEP IT: “A majority of voters now support eliminating the Electoral College in favor of electing presidents by popular vote, according to a new poll. About 53 percent of voters would scrap the Electoral College system in favor of the popular vote, while 43 percent prefer the status quo, according to the NBC News-Wall Street Journal survey released Monday.” (National Review)
  • CLIMATE ALARMISM: “A sweeping report assessing the state of the natural world found that humans are having an ‘unprecedented’ and devastating effect on global biodiversity, with about 1 million animal and plant species now threatened with extinction.” (NBC News)
  • HUMOR: Facebook SWAT team arrests man for illegal possession of conservative views (The Babylon Bee)
  • POLICY: Poorest Americans are benefiting most from strong economy (The Daily Signal)
  • POLICY: No, U.S. sanctions are not killing Venezuela. Maduro is. (Forbes)

For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit In Our Sights.

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OPINION IN BRIEF

Stephen Moore: “I … believe the Fed needs to change the way it operates. In the last month, I started investigating how it makes its decisions, which have such a dramatic impact on jobs, wages, interest rates and the overall well-being of the country. How does the Fed make its monetary policy decisions on setting interest rates, buying bonds and regulating our financial institutions? What I have discovered is that this powerful agency of government truly does operate under a stone wall of secrecy. Meetings are held behind closed doors; statements are carefully crafted to reveal little in the way of what monetary authorities actually think; and the day-to-day activities are shielded from audit. The Fed is arguably the least transparent agency of the federal government, outside of security agencies such as the CIA. It is obvious why national security agencies need to be secretive. But why does the Fed?”

SHORT CUTS

Braying Jackass: “I’m concerned if we don’t impeach this president, he will get reelected. If we don’t impeach him, he will say he’s been vindicated. He will say the Democrats had an overwhelming majority in the House and didn’t take up impeachment. … He will say he’s been vindicated.” —Rep. Al Green

Braying Jenny: “I don’t want to see any of those flag pins anymore on Republicans who don’t stand up against [Trump] for Russian meddling and other things that he’s done. It seems as though he’s unpatriotic.” —"The View" co-host Joy Behar

Non compos mentis: “How many more protesters must be shot, rockets must be fired, and little kids must be killed until the endless cycle of violence ends? The status quo of occupation and humanitarian crisis in Gaza is unsustainable. Only real justice can bring about security and lasting peace.” —Rep. Ilhan Omar defending Hamas and Islamic Jihad’s latest rocket torrent (“Despite Omar’s claims, not a single Jew or Israeli lives in Gaza. It is under complete control of Hamas. It is not ‘occupied’ territory.” —Katie Pavlich)

Friendly fire: “I condemn the rocket attacks on innocent civilians and stand in support of Israel and peace.” —leftist Sen. Kyrsten Sinema

Vengeance: “[Brett Kavanaugh] didn’t have any problem making us put up with three years of Vince Foster nonsense that was a total charade.” —Bill Clinton, who believes the witch hunt against Kavanaugh was fair play

You’ve been warned: “First thing I’d do is repeal those Trump tax cuts.” —Joe Biden

Non sequitur: “[The NRA et al.] hate me because they know I’m not the bogeyman they want. … I do shoot guns. I think that they want the person who is proposing tougher gun laws to be someone who’s never handled a gun before, that isn’t connected to law enforcement. When I was a prosecutor I got to shoot at the range so I could explain to juries how the firearm worked. … So I feel comfortable around guns, and I think that makes them nervous.” —Rep. Eric Swalwell

The BIG Lie: “[Gun licensing] is not a plan that any law-abiding gun owner should be concerned about it.” —Sen. Cory Booker (On the contrary, it’s a plan that every constitutionally minded American should be concerned about.)

And last… “Is Booker’s idea to license gun owners anymore constitutional than requiring a license for speech? … No one seems to take the problem seriously. There are 400 millions guns out there. If someone wants a gun, they’re going to get one. Licensing, background checks, microstamping new guns won’t even have a nominal effect on criminals.” —Frank J. Fleming

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Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher

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