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Is the Freedom Caucus moving the United States or NOT
At the moment, the 40-plus hard-right conservatives in the Freedom Caucus have all but created their own political party by blocking the majority of Republicans in the House from picking a Speaker.
And, like a third party, the Freedom Caucus has its own legislative agenda – ending Obamacare, cutting the budget, building a wall on the southern border. The only question is whether its members are willing to make deals that will attract enough Republicans or Democrats to pass legislation.
That is the operating dynamic of a multi-party, coalition democracy.
The heart of the Freedom Caucus’s discontent with Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is that, although the Tea Party’s victories in 2010 gave him the House majority, he has refused to follow their lead.
Boehner and the majority of Congressional Republicans want to make deals with Democrats that the Tea Party members find unacceptable, even for the sake of keeping the government open.
And the Freedom Caucus finds party-like unity in rebuffing the Speaker’s efforts to discipline them for committee or floor votes that stray from the mainstream Republican line. They feel Boehner shares neither their agenda nor the passions of the voters who sent them to Congress.
“Remember, for us, much of it has to do with the process and empowering individual members and the constituents that sent us here,” Rep. John Fleming (R-La.), a member of the Freedom Caucus, told the New York Times.
“I want there to be more respect for individual members, and I abhor a process where members who are in good faith voting as they believe is necessary and best for our country, are punished by the leadership,” Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.), another Freedom Caucus member, told National Journal.
The Freedom Caucus and the people who sent them to Washington want to sit at the big table and decide on their own deals. All that is required now is that the rebels pick their own leader and begin negotiations with the Republicans and Democrats.
But first they have to officially divorce the GOP and form their own party.
There are enough hard-right Republican voters who agree with this call for independence from GOP leadership to back a new party under the name of the Freedom Caucus.
That is especially true if you factor in the hard right’s dominance of the messaging coming from hard-right radio talk-show hosts and bloggers. Those calls to political arms are reinforced in constant fundraising appeals from groups such as Heritage Action, Freedom Works, the Senate Conservatives Fund and Club for Growth.
Historically, third parties have not had much luck in U.S. politics.
For example, Teddy Roosevelt’s Progressive Party was swallowed up by the Republicans early in the twentieth century. In the 1960s, disaffected Southern Democrats backed segregationist Alabama Gov. George Wallace’s American Independent Party. Many of those southern Democrats later became Republicans.
But the Freedom Caucus and Tea Party types show no signs that they are willing to be absorbed by the Republican Party. They want to be autonomous, free to ally with mainstream Republicans only when they feel it suits their ideological agenda.
The passions that could birth a third party are already discernible in the anti-establishment tone dominating the GOP presidential primary race. Donald Trump, Ben Carson and Carly Fiorina – two businesspeople and a doctor without any track record of governing – have dominated the primaries so far at the expense of experienced, mainstream Republican politicians.
Last week, a new poll confirmed there is genuine, significant support among GOP voters for the Freedom Caucus’ discontent with establishment Republican leaders.
The Economist/YouGov Poll found 39 percent of all Republicans and 45 percent of self-identified conservative Republicans siding with the Freedom Caucus position that a good Speaker puts unflinching ideological rigidity ahead of accomplishing legislative deals with Democrats to pass laws and budgets.
Similarly, the poll found 58 percent of conservative Republicans saying they want a new Speaker who “sticks to their principles no matter what.”
That is far different from the poll’s finding that 60 percent of all Americans think the next Speaker should “work with Democrats and the President so that Congress can accomplish more.” Only 18 percent of all Americans and 16 percent of independent voters think the next House Speaker should “oppose Democrats and the President even if that means Congress accomplishes less.”
In fact, 59 percent of conservative Republicans told the pollsters they want the next Speaker to be more conservative than Boehner. Among all Republicans, the percentage holding that opinion drops markedly, to 48 percent.
That people who comprise that 11-percentage point difference between ‘Republicans’ and ‘conservative Republicans’ will provide the grassroots base for the new party.
This is also why any new Speaker, including the popular Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), will inherit a fractured, unruly and ungovernable caucus. The solution is for the Tea Party members to go their own way, pick their own leader and work with the Republicans when it fits their agenda.
The irony here is that the Tea Party, which regularly decries “European socialism” and professes “American Exceptionalism,” will put the Congress of the United States in a position where it can only function as a European-type parliamentary democracy such as France, Britain or Germany.
History will record it as a curious legacy for the Tea Party.
Juan Williams is an author and political analyst for Fox News Channel.
What government officials should have, national policy
What government officials should have in place nationally, is this policy. Peaceful protest no problem, but when it turns to looting and hurting civilians and police burning buildings destroying property and looting THE ORDER SHOULD BE SHOOT TO KILL. Black, white, South American or just plain ass h_le take that piece of sh_t out. Good law biding people shouldn't have to put up with these loser's. IT'S JUST THAT SIMPLE. 4-28-2015
Scott Walker: 'My View Has Changed' on Amnesty
Scott Walker: 'My View Has Changed' on Amnesty
Mar 1, 2015 7:47 AM PST
The potential 2016 hopeful has officially reversed course on immigration.
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker admitted Sunday to changing his views on the vexing issue of immigration.
Appearing on Fox News Sunday, the presidential was presented with a 2013 clip in which he told a Wisconsin newspaper that he could envision undocumented workers who pay penalties being offered a pathway to citizenship. Walker said Sunday that he has since changed his mind on what many conservatives deem to be "amnesty."
"I don't believe in amnesty, and part of the reason why I've made that a firm position is I look at the way this president has mishandled that issue," Walker said. "I think the better approach is to enforce the laws and to give employers, job creator s the tools like e-verify and other things to make sure the law is being upheld going forward."
”My view has changed. I’m flat-out saying it. Candidates can say that.”
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker
Pressed further about the disparity between those two stances, Walker gave his clearest indication yet that he will be a candidate in the Republican primary.
"My view has changed," Walker said. "I’m flat-out saying it. Candidates can say that."
Interviewed at the 2015 Conservative Political Action Conference by Fox News' Sean Hannity, Walker further detailed his new emphasis on immigration.
"You should secure the border, not just for immigration reasons, but why would you put a fence around three sides of your home and leave the back door open? That's what we have when we guard our ports, we guard our airports, we don't guard our borders," Walker said.
World leaders should be marching down the streets of AMERICA to say THANK YOU
I've been reading some of these comments on the web site link below and for those of you that think it was important for the USA to be in France. Let me remind you our representatives are in larger numbers everyday in Iraq, Afghanistan, and every place else in the WORLD fighting terrorism where it makes a difference. You really think the President showing up in France to walk down a street would do more to fight terrorism then his actions over the last 7 years. Show me any country in the world that has spent more money, sent in more troops, sacrificed more of their sons and daughters to fight terrorism around the world. We have done more from the USA then any other country in the world and we still are. Those world leaders should be showing us the respect to march down our streets to say THANK YOU AMERICA !!!
Joseph Lucey Myyellowpagesplus.com
WASHINGTON (AP) — A Texas congressman drew criticism Tuesday for a tweet that used the world's response to terrorist attacks in Paris as an opportunity to compare President Barack Obama to Adolf Hitler.
Republican congressman ripped for comparing Obama to Hitler MarketWatch
Texas congressman apologizes for tweet on Obama and Hitler Reuters
US lawmaker compares Obama's Paris no-show to Hitler AFP
Republican Congressman Randy Weber Apologizes For Comparing Obama To Hitler Huffington Post
GOP leader regrets talk to white supremacists Associated Press
Rep. Randy Weber's official account, @TXRandy14, tweeted on Tuesday night: "Even Adolph Hitler thought it more important than Obama to get to Paris. (For all the wrong reasons.) Obama couldn't do it for right reasons"
The tweet juxtaposes Hitler's visit to the vanquished city after his troops invaded in World War II, and Obama's failure to join dozens of world leaders at an anti-terror march through Paris on Sunday.
The White House has acknowledged that Obama or another high-level representative of the U.S. should have joined the march in unity with the French following attacks that left 17 people dead. The absence was widely noted, and heavily criticized by congressional Republicans.
"Rep. Weber's tweet is vile and stoops to a new low level by desecrating the victims of the Holocaust to make a political point," Rep. Steve Israel, D-N.Y., said in a statement demanding an apology from Weber.
The Democrats' campaign organization also was quick to denounce the conservative Republican and to connect the incident to Majority Whip Steve Scalise's 2002 speech to a white supremacist group. Scalise has said he regrets the speech and didn't understand the nature of the group.
"Congressional Republicans like Weber are clearly catering to the most extreme elements - first refusing to condemn Steve Scalise's inexcusable affiliation with KKK members, and now this," said Josh Schwerin, spokesman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. "Speaker (John) Boehner and Republican leaders need to step forward and condemn Congressman Weber and his toxic brand of politics."
Weber's spokeswoman did not immediately return a request for comment or verification that Weber personally authored the tweet, which remained in his Twitter feed Tuesday.
Weber has a history of inflammatory remarks, and misspellings, on Twitter.
In a tweet last year he called Obama a "Socialistic dictator" and "Kommandant-In-Chef," presumably meaning "chief."
Monday's tweet used "Adolph" instead of "Adolf" for Hitler's first name.
U.S. Retakes the Helm of the Global Economy
U.S. Retakes the Helm of the Global Economy
By Rich Miller Jan 9, 2015 2:25 PM PT
The U.S. is back in the driver’s seat of the global economy after 15 years of watching China and emerging markets take the lead.
The world’s biggest economy will expand by 3.2 percent or more this year, its best performance since at least 2005, as an improving job market leads to stepped-up consumer spending, according to economists at JPMorgan Chase & Co., Deutsche Bank AG and BNP Paribas SA. That outcome would be about what each foresees for the world economy as a whole and would be the first time since 1999 that America hasn’t lagged behind global growth, based on data from the International Monetary Fund.
“The U.S. is again the engine of global growth,” said Allen Sinai, chief executive officer of Decision Economics in New York. “The economy is looking stellar and is in its best shape since the 1990s.”
In the latest sign of America’s resurgence, the Labor Department reported on Jan. 9 that payrolls rose 252,000 in December as the unemployment rate dropped to 5.6 percent, its lowest level since June 2008. Job growth last month was highlighted by the biggest gain in construction employment in almost a year. Factories, health-care providers and business services also kept adding to their payrolls.
About 3 million more Americans found work in 2014, the most in 15 years and a sign companies are optimistic U.S. demand will persist even as overseas markets struggle.
U.S. government securities rose after the report as investors focused on a surprise drop in hourly wages last month. Ten-year Treasury yields declined seven basis points to 1.95 percent at 5 p.m. in New York on Jan. 9.
“We are still waiting to see the kind of strengthening of wage numbers we would expect to be consistent with what we are seeing elsewhere in terms of growth and the absolute jobs numbers,” Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Dennis Lockhart said in a Jan. 9 interview.
The U.S. is breaking away from the rest of the world partly because it has had more success working off the debt-driven excesses that helped precipitate the worst recession since the Great Depression.
“The progress has been far greater in the U.S.,” Glenn Hubbard, dean of the Columbia Business School in New York and a former chief White House economist, told the American Economic Association annual conference in Boston on Jan. 3.
Delinquencies on consumer installment loans fell to a record-low 1.51 percent in the third quarter, the American Bankers Association said on Jan. 8. That’s “well under” the 15-year average of 2.3 percent on such loans, which include credit cards and borrowing for car purchases and home improvements, it said.
U.S. households have benefited from the strengthening job market and the collapse in oil prices. The nationwide average cost of a gallon of regular gasoline was $2.17 on Jan. 8, the cheapest since May 2009, according to figures from motoring group AAA.
While wage gains have lagged -- average hourly earnings fell 0.2 percent last month from November -- they will accelerate as the labor market continues to tighten, according to Mohamed El-Erian, a Bloomberg View columnist and an adviser to Munich-based Allianz SE.
“It’s just a matter of time before wage growth picks up,” he told Bloomberg Television’s “In The Loop” program on Jan. 9.
Spending is already strengthening. Households splurged on new cars, appliances, televisions and clothing as spending climbed 0.6 percent in November, double the gain in October, according to figures from the Commerce Department in Washington. Light-vehicle sales totaled 16.5 million in 2014, the most since 2006.
“The economy picked up a nice tailwind at the end of the year,” Bill Fay, group vice president for Toyota Motor Corp.’s U.S. sales arm, said on a Jan. 5 conference call. “This strength will carry the auto industry to a sixth straight year of growth in 2015 with analyst projections ranging as high as 17 million.”
At $11.5 trillion in 2013, U.S. personal consumption expenditures were larger than the gross domestic product of any other country that year, including China, according to statistics from the IMF in Washington. The figures aren’t adjusted to reflect price discrepancies for the same goods in different nations -- so-called purchasing power parity -- which tends to inflate the output of developing nations where consumers pay less for everything from haircuts to coffee.
Deutsche Bank economists led by David Folkerts-Landau in London forecast U.S. GDP will expand 3.7 percent this year, after climbing 2.5 percent in 2014. The U.S. will contribute close to 18 percent to global growth of 3.6 percent in 2015, compared with 7 percent for all other industrial countries combined, they wrote in a Jan. 9 report.
While the U.S. is gathering strength, the BRIC nations -- Brazil, Russia, India and China -- are facing tougher times after spending much of the past 15 years basking in the attention of global investors.
Brazil’s debt was downgraded last year for the first time in a decade while Russia is heading into recession, its economy pummeled by the collapse of oil prices and U.S. and European sanctions. Growth in China and India has slowed as both countries grapple with revamping their economies.
“Close the book on emerging markets driving global growth,” Nancy Lazar, co-founder and a partner at Cornerstone Macro LP in New York, wrote in a Jan. 8 report to clients.
Even Jim O’Neill, the former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. chief economist who coined the BRIC acronym, has soured on some of its members, saying in an e-mail that he would be tempted to remove Brazil and Russia from the group if they fail to revive their flagging economies.
“It is tough for the BRIC countries to all repeat their remarkable growth rates” of the first decade of this century, said O’Neill, a Bloomberg View columnist and former chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management International.
He argued, though, that even at a slower growth rate, China will add more to the world economy this year than the U.S., when measuring their output on a purchasing power parity basis.
The U.S. has pulled ahead of other industrial nations partly because its policy-making has been better, according to Paul Mortimer-Lee, chief economist for North America at BNP Paribas in New York.
European Central Bank President Mario Draghi and his colleagues are still weighing whether they should buy government bonds to fight off the danger of deflation -- a step that the Federal Reserve first took back in 2009.
U.S. budget policy also has been more effective than the euro region’s austerity strategy, which undercut the continent’s economy, Mortimer-Lee added.
Even Alberto Alesina, a long-time proponent of government spending cuts, thinks the euro area should adopt a more expansionary fiscal stance. Alesina, who is a professor at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, told the AEA conference on Jan. 5 that he favors more “aggressive” tax cuts by the region’s policy makers.
Japan, meanwhile, managed to throw its economy back into a recession by raising its consumption tax to 8 percent from 5 percent on April 1.
Looking across much of the rest of the world, “the U.S. continues to dominate,” Hubbard said.
To contact the reporter on this story: Rich Miller in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.org
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Chris Wellisz at email@example.com Mark Rohner, Brendan Murray
Watch the video below to see the surprise
Watch the video below to see the surprise 12-20-2014
Twice a day, for hours at a time, Nathaniel Kendrick dons his luminescent vest to help keep the children of Lakewood Elementary School safe.
Kendrick, better known as "Mr. Kent" to the students, began working as the school's crossing guard a decade ago and loves every minute of it.
"It's wonderful; I enjoy it," Kendrick says.
He's a man who cares for children, while at the same time caring for his sick wife as her health, and their finances, deteriorate.
"My mother told me long before she passed, 'Take care of your wife.' So I try my best," Kendrick explains.
But despite his best efforts, he continues to fall on hard times.
As word spread of Kendrick's situation, a group of dads who are part of the Friends of Lakewood community group got together to brainstorm a solution. What they came up with is quite simply amazing.
Watch the video below to see the surprise that shocked Kendrick to the point of speechlessness.
Here at the USA TODAY network, not only do we want to provide you with the current events of the day, but also a little dose of inspiration while you're getting your news fix. Inspiration Nation is our way of providing you with that jolt of good news to bring a smile to your day.