Last Night's #SOTU Address
The State of the Union address was not anything new. President Obama used old lines from previous speeches, and restated previous promises. He failed to address issues such as America's debt which has now reached $17.3 trillion. He failed to address the issues with Obamacare. He failed to point out that although the unemployment rate has decreased the labor force participation rate has also decreased. Millions of Americans are suffering from his policies and the President failed to address these issues. He also promised to bypass Congress if possible.
President Obama also advocated increasing the minimum wage to over $10. Increasing the minimum wage is dangerous for an already faltering economy. An increased wage will increase costs, forcing companies to lay off employees and/or raise prices, in turn decreasing demand which will cause more lay-offs. Tell Congress to oppose any raise in the minimum wage.
WATCH the Republican Response by Cathy McMorris Rodgers.
NOTE: You can watch the Tea Party Response, delivered by Senator Mike Lee, here.
March For Life 2014
There were lots of people, and it was very cold.
Those are the first things that come to mind thinking back on the 41st annual March for Life, which took place last week in Washington, DC.
650,000 Americans braved temperatures in the low teens to remember the tragic anniversary of Roe vs. Wade and to show that the pro-life movement is just as strong as ever. 650,000 Americans told Washington, DC, and all of America, that we stand for life. And hundreds of thousands more, unable to come, prayed and showed their support on social media.
Several Freedom's Defenders team members attended the March, along with tens of thousands of young people who are hopeful and confident that our generation will abolish abortion. The strong presence of college and high school groups was a reminder to all attending and watching that we are the pro-life generation.
Watch a great overview of the March from the Heritage Foundation below!
Blog post by Peter B.
Race and the Republican Party
During the 2012 election I was taking a philosophy class at my local university. A couple days after the election, race relations came up as a class discussion. It was during this discussion that one of the other students stated, “Race is the major reason people oppose President Obama.” I quickly countered, listing the multiple conservatives of African descent, and noting that Herman Cain had almost won the Republican nomination. Despite the fact that many in the Republican Party and conservative movement are of minorities, it is a widely held belief that somehow the Republicans are anti-minority.
In order to combat this claim, it is helpful to look at the history of the Republican and Democrat parties. In 1864, in the midst of the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln was re-elected. He ran as a Republican and on a party platform that declared, “We are in favor, furthermore, of such an amendment to the Constitution, to be made by the people in conformity with its provisions, as shall terminate and forever prohibit the existence of Slavery within the limits of the jurisdiction of the United States.” This statement was reminiscent of the first Republican party platform, which declared slavery to be barbaric. The Democrat party, however, refused to discuss slavery in their 1864 platform.
Despite the failure of Democrats to discuss slavery in the 1864 platform, their opinion on the matter was made perfectly clear. In 1865 the vote to abolish slavery by passing the 13th Amendment was taken. Out of the 82 Democrats in Congress, only 19 voted for the Amendment, whereas 100% (118) of the Republican members approved the 13th Amendment. Similar results followed with the ratification of the 14th and 15th Amendments. By 1900, Democrats began actively seeking the repeal of the 14th and 15th Amendments. Senator Tillman (D) from South Carolina summed up the Democratic sentiment: “We had made up our minds that the 14th and 15th Amendments to the Constitution were themselves null and void; [and] that the acts of Congress were null and void.” The first Representative of African descent elected to Congress was Republican Joseph Rainey in 1868 who said about the Republican party: "We intend to continue to vote so long as the government gives us the right and necessary protection; and I know that the right accorded to us will never be withheld in the future if left to the Republican Party."
The first Democratic Representative of African descent was elected in 1934, but by that time 21 Republican Representatives of African descent had been elected. In the same way, by the time the first Democrat of African decent was elected to the Senate in 1993, three African American Republicans had held Senate offices, the first being Hiram Revels in 1870.
Today there are more Americans of African descent in the Democratic party than 100 years ago, but the fact still remains that it was the Republican Party and not the Democratic Party that led the charge for the abolition of slavery and for civil rights. Indeed, even today the racial divide of the parties is not what many would claim. Currently there are two Senators who are of African descent: Senator Tim Scott, a Republican from South Carolina, and Senator Cory Booker, a Democrat from New Jersey. Only in the House of Representatives are the numbers in favor of the Democrats, but this is not for lack of candidates on the part of Republicans. Mayor Mia Love and Representative Allan West are two notable candidates who lost their 2012 elections.
The same is true in the executive branch, although President Obama was the first African American elected as President. Republican Presidents had appointed Americans of African descent to high ranking positions. For example, under George W. Bush, both Secretaries of State were African Americans. It was also a Republican President who sought the advice of Booker T. Washington.
The Republican party is the party that pushed for civil rights and the abolition of slavery. The Republican party is the party that lives out Dr. King's dream. The Republican party strives to judge a person, not based upon the color of their skin, but on the content of their character. It is the Democrats that insist on injecting race into politics -- Republicans wish to see the issue left behind. We do not care what color a person’s skin is, but we do care what the content of their character is.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…”
American History in Black and White by David Barton
Blog post by Amber D.
Weekly Wrap-Up: January 5-11, 2014
Isreal's former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon passed away last week after being comatose for eight years. Sharon had commanded the Israeli army in various conflicts with the Muslim Nations that sought to destroy Israel. Sharon has defended his country well, and is sorely missed as a World Leader.
Religious Persecution: 2014
Open Doors International has released a list of the 50 worst countries for Religious Liberty.
Marriage Update: UTah
Utah has announced that they will not recognize homosexual marriage performed before the Supreme Court granted Utah's request for a emergancy injunction. Late last year a District Court ruled Utah's homosexual marriage ban unconstitutional. The State of Utah quickly appealed and asked for an emergancy injunction, which was granted. The Appeal is pending.
First of 2014 - Marriage in Utah, Reince Priebus on March For Life, New Parental Rights Cosponsors
MARRIAGE IN UTAH: The US Supreme Court issued a stay on a December ruling by federal District Court judge Robert J. Shelby that would have forced the state to accept homosexual "marriage". The stay issued yesterday by the Supreme Court allows Utah's ban on homosexual "marriage" to remain in place while Judge Shelby's decision is appealed to the Tenth Circuit court.
Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Council, released the following statement:
"The Supreme Court has today signaled that it will not allow state laws defining marriage to be set aside by a lone judge without a careful consideration of the issues involved. The issuance of a stay is consistent with the Court's ruling last year in Windsor v. United States, in which they affirmed that states have the 'historic and essential authority to define the marital relation' and condemned federal efforts 'to influence or interfere with state sovereign choices about who may be married.'"
MARCH FOR LIFE: On Sunday, news broke that Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus is delaying the start if the GOP's winter meetings so that RNC members can attend the March For Life on January 22. The party will also charter a bus to transport committee members to the March For Life. Read the story in the Washington Times here.
While we don't always agree with Chairman Priebus, we applaud this decision and hope that he will continue to show strong pro-life leadership as the chairman of the Republican Party.
PARENTAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT: Over the Christmas and New Years holidays, the Parental Rights Amendment gained five new cosponsors, bringing the total number up to 70! Click here to see if your Congressman is on the list, and if they're not, give them a call and ask them to support parental rights!