Gary Bauer / Mar. 2, 2016

A Fourth Party?

If you thought this election season could not get any crazier, think again. There are persistent rumors in Washington about a potential third and even a fourth party candidacy. Let me explain. Should Clinton and Trump win their nominations, Michael Bloomberg is expected to jump into the race as an independent candidate. But lately, there have been credible reports that a more traditional conservative may also mount an independent general election campaign in order to appeal to center-right voters turned off by Donald Trump.

If you thought this election season could not get any crazier, think again. There are persistent rumors in Washington about a potential third and even a fourth party candidacy. Let me explain.

Should Clinton and Trump win their nominations, Michael Bloomberg is expected to jump into the race as an independent candidate. But lately, there have been credible reports that a more traditional conservative may also mount an independent general election campaign in order to appeal to center-right voters turned off by Donald Trump.

If that happens, we could see a very unpredictable four-way race come November featuring Hillary Clinton (D), Michael Bloomberg (I), Donald Trump (R) and a conservative fourth party candidate. Both the left and the right would be divided.

The potential chaos could scramble the general election, preventing a winner in the Electoral College, thereby requiring the House of Representatives to determine our next president.

Just Three Christians?

The Paris and San Bernardino terrorist attacks, carried out by radical Islamists, drew attention to a number of glaring weaknesses in our immigration and refugee policies.

Intelligence reports at the time indicated that ISIS was attempting to exploit the refugee program. Not surprisingly, a Bloomberg poll found that only 28% of Americans supported President Obama’s plan to bring 10,000 refugees from Syria to America.

One possible compromise was to give preference to Christians and other religious minorities. Obama flatly rejected that idea as “shameful” and “un-American,” even though current law demands preference be given to those suffering religious persecution. But it appears as though the administration is actually giving preference to Muslims in the refugee program.

Christians made up approximately 10% of Syria’s pre-war population. So it stands to reason that roughly 10% of the refugees entering the country might be Christians.

Yet, according to the latest information provided by the State Department Refugee Processing Center, just three Syrian Christians have been accepted as refugees since the Paris and San Bernardino attacks. Of the 651 Syrian refugees admitted to the U.S. in recent weeks, 647 — 99% — are Muslims. (One refugee’s faith was listed as “other.”)

How is that possible?

Some may argue that the refugee program is largely administered by the United Nations, and we take refugees who are first vetted at U.N. refugee camps. Well, that is a big part of the problem. The U.N. refugee camps are full of Muslims and Syrian Christians aren’t even safe there.

The Leaders Meet

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley met with President Barack Obama at the White House [yesterday] to discuss the Supreme Court vacancy created by Justice Antonin Scalia’s death. Democrat Leader Harry Reid and Sen. Patrick Leahy, the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, joined them.

The president reportedly pitched his plan for the Senate to consider his Supreme Court nominee. It appears that Leader McConnell and Chairman Grassley were not very receptive to the president’s remarks because Harry Reid emerged from the meeting absolutely furious.

He told reporters on the White House driveway, “They were adamant. They said, ‘No, we’re not going to do this at all.’” Reid said the meeting didn’t last very long, adding, “We killed a lot of time talking about basketball.”

Why It Matters

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals last week upheld a Louisiana law intended to improve health and safety standards at abortion clinics. Pro-abortion advocates had warned that the new regulations could shutter three of Louisiana’s four abortion mills.

The law is modeled after legislation passed in Texas in 2013. It was challenged in the courts and upheld by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. Twenty abortion clinics have closed since it took effect. But the Supreme Court will hear a challenge to that law tomorrow.

We know that there are four liberal votes to strike down the Texas law. Three justices (Roberts, Thomas and Alito) are expected vote to uphold it. As is often the case, Justice Anthony Kennedy will decide its fate and he could go either way.

On a 4-to-4 split decision, the pro-life ruling of the lower federal court (in this case the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals) stands, but no national precedent is set. Similar laws in others parts of the country could be challenged and eventually make their way to the Supreme Court.

Here’s something else we know: If Barack Obama was allowed to replace Justice Scalia, Anthony Kennedy would be irrelevant. There would be a clear liberal majority on the Supreme Court. The ruling on the Texas abortion case would be 5-to-4 at best, and possibly even 6-to-3, against the cause of life.

That is why it matters that Senate Republicans hold firm in refusing to allow the appointment of another left-wing judicial activist to replace Justice Scalia. Senate Republicans believe the American people should have a voice, through their votes this November, in who picks the next Supreme Court justice.

I couldn’t agree more.

My friends, the future of the Republic and the values we cherish are at stake. Please make sure all your friends and family members are registered to vote.

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