WASHINGTON — The ousted chief of the Internal Revenue Service is telling Congress that his agency made errors in targeting conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status, but he says the mistakes were not the result of partisan views.
In a prepared statement, former acting IRS commissioner Steven Miller was ready to tell the House Ways and Means Committee on Friday that the screening system agency workers set up was designed to deal with a growing caseload of groups seeking tax-exempt status. Miller said it was not due to “any political or partisan viewpoint.”
Photo credit: SS&SS (Creative Commons)
With its ranks deeply divided, the Boy Scouts of America is asking its local leaders from across the country to decide whether its contentious membership policy should be overhauled so that openly gay boys can participate in Scout units.
The proposal to be put before the roughly 1,400 voting members of the BSA’s National Council on Thursday, at a meeting in Grapevine, Texas, would retain the Scouts’ long-standing ban on gays serving in adult leadership positions.
Nonetheless, some conservatives within and outside the BSA community have denounced the proposal, saying the Scouts’ traditions would be undermined by the presence of openly gay youth. There have been warnings of mass defections if the ban is even partially lifted.
From the other flank, gay-rights supporters and some Scout leaders from politically liberal areas have welcomed the proposed change as a positive first step, but are calling on the BSA to go further and lift the ban on gay adults as well.
The Scouts’ national spokesman, Deron Smith, said the policy toward gays had become “the most complex and challenging issue” facing the BSA at a time when it is struggling to stem a steady drop in membership.
Read more at Official Wire. By David Crary.
Photo Credit: Hoffman Estates, IL
Newsmax.com is reporting that former Florida Rep. Allen West will join Fox News as a contributor. Apparently the news channel made the announcement yesterday.
“Representative West’s congressional and military experience along with his fearless approach to voicing key issues will provide a valuable point of view to the Fox News lineup,” Bill Shine, the network’s executive vice president of programming, said in a statement.
Interestingly, he is cited as being brought on board Fox News for his “fearless approach to voicing key issues.” In reality, Mike Zullo, lead investigator of the Sheriff Joe Arpaio Cold Case Posse and Carl Gallups, founder of PPSIMMONS News and Ministry and host ofFreedom Friday With Carl Gallups radio found a very different Allen West when they spoke with him at this year’s CPAC just outside Washington D.C.
WASHINGTON — A second federal appeals court has found that President Barack Obama exceeded his power when he bypassed the Senate to install a member to the National Labor Relations Board.
The ruling by the 3rd Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Philadelphia came on the same day that a Senate panel considered a slate of five nominees for full terms on the labor board. Senate Republicans said Thursday they would oppose two of the nominees — Sharon Block and Richard Griffin — because they currently sit on the board as recess appointments.
In its 2-1 decision ruling, the appeals court said that under the Constitution recess appointments can be made only between sessions of the Senate, not any time the Senate is away on a break.
The court’s action mirrors a far-reaching ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., earlier this year. The Obama administration has appealed that ruling to the Supreme Court, arguing that such an interpretation would invalidate hundreds of recess appointments made by presidents over more than 100 years.
The latest ruling says Obama had no constitutional authority to install attorney Craig Becker to the labor board in 2010 while the Senate was adjourned for two weeks. Becker is no longer on the board.
Read More at OfficialWire . By Sam Hananel.
Chula Vista, CA—A talented Salt Creek Elementary School kindergartener was recently turned down from playing the guitar while singing a song at his school’s upcoming May 23 talent show. The unwarranted—and unconstitutional—rejection didn’t come due to lack of talent but because the song, “Our God Is Mercy,” is a Christian song.
When the young student was told that he wouldn’t be in the show, he was crushed. The student’s mother contacted Pacific Justice Institute (PJI) for assistance, and Senior Counsel Michael Peffer stepped in to help correct the situation.
In a letter to the Principal, citing legal precedents on the issue, Peffer explains, “Because such censorship on the basis of a student’s religious beliefs is a violation of his constitutional rights, we write to request that you immediately allow [the student] to perform his song at the upcoming talent show.”
Brad Dacus, President of PJI, noted, “This issue exemplifies the ongoing fear from school administrators to allow anything even remotely connected to Christianity in the school. In their attempt to avoid the wrath of anti-religionists, misguided school officials end up inadvertently embracing secularism as the school’s official religion.”
In light of the case-law sent to school administrators, PJI is hopeful that they will make the right decision. The school, however, has not released a final decision on the issue.
Nowadays, picking a scandal to talk about is like shooting fish in a barrel – especially considering the last couple of weeks.
The DOJ acquiring Associated Press phone records…
The IRS targeting Tea Partiers…
Today there are whispers of an EPA scandal about to drop…
What could possibly be next? Audits delivered to us via drone strikes?
Truth is, any one of these scandals could spell the end for Obama. And out of all the chaos, the crème de la crème is still Benghazi. It has to be. American lives were lost.
Read More at Capitol Hill Daily . By Marty Biancuzzo.
As millions of students and their parents are preparing for life after commencement, they’re also preparing to deal with massive student loans. Increasingly, people are concerned about the student debt situation brewing on college campuses. The present state of student debt is not a pretty picture.
According to a report published by the New York Federal Reserve Bank, college students are borrowing more than ever and debt delinquency is on the rise. Student debt almost tripled between 2004 and 2012 and is now just over $1 trillion. In fact, student debt is the only kind of household debt to rise during the Great Recession and is now second only to mortgage debt in magnitude. At the same time, for all age groups the share of borrowers who are more than 90 days delinquent on their student loan repayment has almost doubled.
Some, like Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, claim that student debt is not inflating a higher education bubble that will cause a financial crisis, because the vast majority of student loans are backed by the U.S. government. The taxpayers are on the hook and not the banks, so banks will not be in financial distress if students default.
Bernanke’s claim is revealing. It’s clear that he thinks that the financial system is the economy. It seems that if the financial system is afloat, everything is okay. Such reasoning ignores that what helps people achieve their ends is not money per se but the actual producer and consumer goods that are produced throughout the social economy.
Alas, investment made possible by subsidized loans of newly created money contributes to an unproductive use of resources. Thus the economic problem with government-guaranteed student loans. Consider:
Read More at OfficialWire . By Dr. Shawn Ritenour.
A 180-year-old Baptist newspaper said on Thursday that it was targeted by the Internal Revenue Service for extra scrutiny.
The Biblical Recorder, published by the North Carolina Baptist State Convention, said it was singled out by the agency in March, Fox News reports.
Last summer, the Recorder gained national attention after Allan Blume, its editor, published an interview with Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy.
In the interview, Cathy said that he was “guilty as charged” in his support of traditional family values.
The Recorder also published ads from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association — which also was targeted by the IRS — that backed North Carolina’s marriage amendment.
Read More at Newsmax . By Todd Beamon.
Photo Credit: John H. Wright (Creative Commons)
What do the Benghazi cover-up and the IRS scandal have in common? They were both about winning elections, under false pretenses.
Winning elections, after all, is something Barack Obama is good at. He obviously loves campaigning and delivering grand orations to enormous adoring crowds.
He loves it so much that he flew off to Las Vegas to campaign the day after the first murder of a U.S. ambassador in 33 years.
What actually happened in Benghazi was out of sync with the Obama campaign line. Osama bin Laden was dead. Al-Qaida was on the run. The global war on terror — well, don’t call it that anymore.
A deliberate effort to mislead the voters was launched. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, White House press secretary Jay Carney and the president himself talked about a spontaneous protest of an anti-Muslim video — even though no evidence of that came from Benghazi.
Read More at Real Clear Politics . By Michael Barone.
Photo Credit: Donkey Hotey Creative Commons