Mid-Day Digest

Jul. 16, 2019

THE FOUNDATION

“No Wall of words … can be so formed as to stand against the sweeping torrent of boundless ambition on the one side, aided by the sapping current of corrupted morals on the other.” —George Washington (1789)

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IN TODAY’S EDITION

FEATURED ANALYSIS

If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Call 'Em Racist

Veteran journalist Brit Hume weighed in on the uproar over President Donald Trump’s latest bomb-throwing: “Trump’s 'go back’ comments were nativist, xenophobic, counterfactual and politically stupid. But they simply do not meet the standard definition of racist, a word so recklessly flung around these days that its actual meaning is being lost.”

Many grassroots Americans would vehemently disagree with Hume’s first sentence, and we’ll come back to that. It was his second sentence that resonated. Hume even cited the Merriam-Webster’s definition of racism to show that Trump’s comments had nothing to do with race. Hilariously — and pathetically, in a sign of the times — Merriam-Webster replied with a lengthy explanation about how “the lexicographer’s role” isn’t to define “how some may feel [words] should be used,” while warning that “it is prudent to recognize that quoting from a dictionary is unlikely to either mollify or persuade the person with whom one is arguing.”

In other words, words have no meaning if facts conflict with your triggered feelings.

Now, to the first of Hume’s assertions. Again, as we noted yesterday, Trump said what he said poorly, leaving himself wide open for the very assault he’s facing. He said what we think he meant far better in defending himself later. “These are people that hate our country,” he said. “If you’re not happy in the U.S., if you’re complaining all the time, very simply, you can leave.”

Oddly enough, leaving wasn’t his idea. Are we the only ones who remember the scads of leftists pledging to flee America altogether if Trump were elected president? Instead, they’re all still here, still hating our country, still undermining the “democracy” they claim to be defending, and still trying to impeach its president.

That brings us to the press conference Monday involving the four radical leftist congresswomen who are members of what has been dubbed “The Squad” — Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, and Ayanna Pressley.

Omar, the anti-American, anti-Semitic refugee from Somalia — and thus the only one of the four women resembling Trump’s original description — was the worst, calling Trump “blatantly racist” and decrying his “agenda of white nationalists.” She rehearsed a slew of false charges against Trump. Among them:

  • Trump was “credibly accused of … colluding with a foreign government to interfere with our election.” (A team of Democrat lawyers spent two years and $35 million to determine that it was NOT a credible accusation.)

  • He has “pursued an agenda to allow millions of Americans to die from a lack of health care while he transfers millions of dollars in tax cuts to corporations.” (Both charges are BIG Lies and/or tinfoil-hat conspiracies. Millions have not died for lack of health care. And no money was “transferred” to corporations because it wasn’t taken via taxes in the first place. Democrats are the ones bent on transferring wealth and basing their platform on envy.)

  • “This is a president who has called black athletes ‘sons of b—es.’ This is a president that called people who come from black and brown countries ‘s—tholes.’ This is a president who has equated neo-Nazis with those who protest them.” (No, he didn’t. No, he didn’t. And no, he didn’t.)

  • She falsely blamed Trump “for the deaths of children on our border,” and she accused him of “committing human-rights abuses” like “keeping children in cages and having human beings drinking out of toilets.” (Children and the traffickers who bring them might not be trying to illegally cross the border without Democrats’ open invitation. And while no one is drinking from toilets, Border Patrol detention facilities wouldn’t be overwhelmed without, again, Democrats’ open invitation.)

  • Omar accused Trump of making a “mockery out of our Constitution,” something Democrats do all day every day, while concluding, “It’s time for us to impeach this president.”

There was plenty more, but that should suffice.

The Democrats’ clear agenda with the “racist” charge is a craven political calculation to send Republicans scrambling for cover. It’s working, too, as elected Republicans distance themselves from the president while much of the conservative commentariat piles on Trump. But they’re succumbing to the relentless drumbeat of the Democrats’ Leftmedia super PAC. For example, a Washington Post story today is titled, “White identity politics drives Trump, and the Republican Party under him.”

How to put this politely…? That’s horse pucky. Buried under Trump’s garbled prose is a legitimate point, and it has nothing to do with race. It has to do with loving or hating America and the political party guilty of the latter.

Finally, as we observed yesterday, Trump’s strategy is to unite Democrats behind these four radical socialist faces. “Trump doesn’t play tic-tac-toe. He plays chess,” said Newt Gingrich. “He wants the Democratic Party to identify with” these four women. “Pelosi in a sense was trying to draw a line and say, ‘We are not them.’ After Trump’s tweet, she said, ‘Oh, we really are them.’” Pelosi is indeed standing with the four to push a new resolution to condemn Trump.

Likewise, Rush Limbaugh said, “Trump obviously is attempting to have these people become the face of the Democrat Party. It’s a brilliant political move.” No less than DNC Chief Tom Perez said that of Ocasio-Cortez last year. And a new poll says swing voters do indeed consider AOC to be the “definitional face” of Democrats.

So, we’ll see if Trump’s strategy really is brilliant.

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New Asylum Rule Is Meant to Save Lives

On Monday, the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security announced a new rule regarding U.S. asylum laws. This comes in the wake of massive numbers of foreign migrants exploiting America’s asylum system as a means of de facto immigration. It comes also as Democrats in Congress have been steadfast in opposing any legislative solution to the border crisis, as the party has essentially adopted an open-borders policy.

The new rule would bar foreign nationals from receiving asylum in the U.S. if they have not first applied for asylum in an intermediary country, which in many current cases would be Mexico or another Central American country.

In announcing the new rule, Attorney General William Barr noted that the administration’s intention is to uphold the spirit of America’s asylum system. “The United States is a generous country but is being completely overwhelmed by the burdens associated with apprehending and processing hundreds of thousands of aliens along the southern border,” he said. “This Rule will decrease forum shopping by economic migrants and those who seek to exploit our asylum system to obtain entry to the United States — while ensuring that no one is removed from the United States who is more likely than not to be tortured or persecuted on account of a protected ground.”

Predictably, leftist groups were quick to decry the new rule as “most egregious” and “extreme,” with Charanya Krishnaswami, advocacy director for the Americas at Amnesty International, claiming that it would “fundamentally eviscerate the right to territorial asylum in the United States.” Several groups vowed to take the Trump administration to court, the irony of which was seemingly lost on these migrant-advocate groups.

We relayed the heart-wrenching story last month of the drowning death of a migrant and his two-year-old child. Because of the father’s impatience with America’s asylum system, he chose to break the law and try to illegally cross into the U.S. — a decision that tragically ended up costing him and his child their lives. The new rule is aimed at decreasing deadly incidents like this by eliminating another pull factor.

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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

ABORTION REGULATIONS BEGIN: “Effective immediately, family planning clinics that are funded by taxpayers must stop referring women for abortions, the Trump administration said Monday. The Health and Human Services (HHS) Department formally notified clinics that it will begin enforcing the ban on abortion referrals, along with a requirement that clinics maintain separate finances from facilities that provide abortions.” (Associated Press)

DEFYING THE WITCH HUNT: “White House senior adviser Kellyanne Conway defied a subpoena and failed to appear on Monday at a congressional hearing about allegations she violated federal law, prompting a Democratic threat to hold her in contempt of Congress.” (Reuters)

FOR THE RECORD: “Despite numerous liberal politicians and pundits excoriating the Trump administration for delaying the Harriet Tubman $20 bill, former Obama administration officials recently revealed there was no actual delay. … While the Obama administration publicly claimed the Tubman bill would be ready in 2020, internally the Treasury Department recognized that deadline would not actually be met.” (The Washington Free Beacon)

FACEBOOK FINE: The Associated Press reports that the Federal Trade Commission has authorized a $5 billion fine regarding Facebook’s privacy malpractices. The final step is a review inside the Justice Department, where the fine is expected to pass muster. Unfortunately, the seemingly massive punishment is in reality pretty mundane: “For many companies, a $5 billion fine would be crippling. But Facebook is not most companies. It had nearly $56 billion in revenue last year. This year, analysts expect around $69 billion, according to Zacks. As a one-time expense, the company will also be able to exclude the amount from its adjusted earnings results — the profit figure that investors and financial analysts pay attention to.” On a somewhat related note, Senators Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley “are asking the Federal Trade Commission to investigate social media companies’ perceived censorship practices,” The Daily Caller reports.

CHARLOTTESVILLE JUSTICE: “The man who killed one woman and injured dozens of others when he rammed his car into a crowd of counter-protesters at a 2017 white-nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va. has received an additional life sentence. … Judge Richard Moore of Virginia sentenced [the perpetrator] on Monday to life imprisonment plus 419 years and a fine of $480,000, following the recommendation of a state jury.” (National Review)

ICE-COLD RHETORIC: “According to a local report, a man that authorities say attacked an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention facility in Tacoma, Washington over the weekend repeatedly used the same ‘concentration camp’ rhetoric which socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) injected into U.S. politics last month, in a manifesto that he allegedly wrote.” (The Daily Wire)

POLICY: Controlling costs is health care’s defining issue (RealClearPolicy)

POLICY: How bureaucrats ruin everything from dishwashers to gas cans to cars (Issues & Insights)

SATIRE: Democrats begin to realize CNN and reality are different places (The Daily Wire)

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

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OPINION IN BRIEF

Dennis Prager: “[Megan] Rapinoe is a great soccer player. Other than that, she is unimpressive. She comes across as arrogant, a fool and a lowlife. Why a fool? Because she thinks she has something important to say to the American people and that we need to hear it because she is a great soccer player. She is not alone in this conceit. Tom Steyer and other billionaires think the same thing about themselves: that because they are better at making money than almost everybody, they must be wiser than almost everybody. People who excel in one thing are tempted to think they are smart about everything, but that is almost never the case. There is no reason at all to assume that people who excel in anything (other than wisdom) are wiser than anybody else. And here’s the kicker (no pun intended): People who think they are wise because they excel at something unrelated to wisdom are fools.”

SHORT CUTS

For the record: “We all know that AOC and this crowd are a bunch of communists. They hate Israel, they hate our own country, they’re calling … Border Patrol agents concentration camp guards. They accuse people who support Israel as doing it for the ‘Benjamins.’ They are anti-Semitic. They are anti-America. … [And] we don’t need to know anything about them personally [to] talk about their policies.” —Sen. Lindsey Graham

For the record II: “Their real problem is that they have a problem with America because the American people are too free. The American people have too much liberty and too much say-so over their own lives. And boy, if you come here and think that’s a problem, there’s no way you can be an American. If you think that the problem in America is too much freedom, too much liberty, not a big enough government, then you’re not an American. You’re nowhere close to being an American.” —Rush Limbaugh

Political futures: “Mr. Trump doesn’t seem to understand that Democrats want the 2020 election to be about his words and behavior, rather than the results of his economic policies. They’ll lose a debate over results, but they’ll win if the election is a referendum on character.” —The Wall Street Journal

Non Compos Mentis: “Remember the heat that ended up around the bend the knee and Colin Kaepernick? Many smart people have said it was actually not a thing. The Russian bots started taking that on.” —Sen. Kamala Harris

Hot air: “This bigotry, this hate, this homophobia, Islamaphobia, xenophobia is a part of our Original Sin. We in the Congress of the United States of America have an opportunity to do something about the Original Sin. … This is our opportunity and I beg that we would take advantage of it and let history know that when we had a chance to do something about the Original Sin of the United States of America … we took the opportunity and we did … the most honorable thing to do and that was to impeach this president.” —Rep. Al Green

Déjà vu: “I give people the option. If you like your health care plan, your employer-based plan, you can keep it. If in fact you have private insurance, you can keep it.” —Joe Biden

And last… “I thought it was Pelosi who yesterday was being accused of racism by the very four people who she’s now defending. If Pelosi and everyone else is a racist, what does it mean anymore?” —Newt Gingrich

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