Tuesday, November 20, 2018

One Man, One Vote, ONE DAY

To Fix Elections, Hold Real Elections

By Michael Walsh

The mess in Florida, Georgia, Maine, and anywhere else in these United States where, thanks to the Democrats and their locust legions of lawyers, the results of last week's elections are still in doubt, can easily be fixed. Have voting on a fixed day and date: all eligible voters with proof of identity and residency within the applicable jurisdiction can vote only during the statutory hours at designated polling places. The end.

In other words, no:

  • early voting
  • provisional voting
  • motor-voter registration
  • mail-in ballots
  • phone-in or faxed-in votes
  • absentee ballots except for on-duty military stationed overseas (civilian living out of the country? tough, your choice)
  • all results to be reported within twelve hours of poll closings and certified within 24

Problem solved.

That's largely the way elections used to be conducted in the modern age, when personal responsibility was still prized and the notion of civic duty was not derided as a relic of a vanishing "white," patriarchal America that is rapidly being replaced by an ascendant (and coincidentally Democratic) coalition of women and minorities. In the guise of "fairness," the secular Democrats have long since sacramentalized the right to vote -- which, historically, is not at all that sacred, and has been in various cultures, times, and places subject to all sorts of restrictions; and which right one is still free either to choose or not use -- and now have incrementally extended the act of voting from one day to days and even weeks, whether before or after the actual election day itself.

But if voting is "sacred," then treat it like church or shul: on a fixed day, at a fixed time, in a fixed place.

Since the polls closed on Nov. 6, the GOP has seen a steady number of House seats slip away from their apparent victors, as well as a Senate seat in Arizona and, still at issue, a Senate seat in Florida and two governorships, in Florida and Georgia.This makes nonsense of the whole idea of an election, which is a snapshot in time of citizens -- all acting upon the same available information -- making a binding decision in their role as the body politic.

But nothing is ever really "binding" for the Democrats, who view campaigns as effectively never-ending processes: they are always either litigating the most recent vote, planning ahead for the next one, or both. The Democrats have become the party for which elections are not a means to governing but governing itself, which they do via their secretaries of state, lawyers, extraordinary GOTV efforts, and various means of miraculous ballot-discovery. For them, no election is every truly over unless they win.

Since 1845, the law has been clear: national elections (which set the standard for all others) are to be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. And yet the Democrats have cannily whittled away the very concept of an election by cloaking their various amendments and objections in the guise of "civil rights," relying on the media's pat stereotype of post-Reconstruction America from more than a century ago as the still-operative template of today.

That this is both offensive and wrong bothers them not one whit: "by any means necessary" is their motto for a reason. So unless the GOP never wants to win another national election, those states still controlled by Republican governors and legislative majorities need to get their act together, fast.

The Democrats lost the presidential election of 2000 only because the Supreme Court, in a 7-2 vote, overruled the Florida Supreme Court's order for a statewide recount as being in clear violation of Florida law and a violation of the Equal Protection Clause. That effectively ended the contest. But once burned, twice shy: Democrats have made sure to attack almost every subsequent close vote across the board, in Washington state for governor, in two straight Connecticut gubernatorial races, in Al Franken's wondrous "victory" in Minnesota, and in Arizona this year, to name just a few recent examples. They never stop, they never sleep, they never quit.

Now they're still at it in Florida, because if they can "win" there their media buddies can cement the notion that this was a "blue wave" election after all, thus sowing doubt and discouragement in the minds of Republican voters heading into 2020 and emboldening talk of dumping Trump in favor of... Mitt Romney?... so the wipeout can be complete.

One man, one vote, one day. Anything else is not democracy, it's anarchy.

From PJ Media (November 16, 2018)

The Fatal Attraction Of Political Violence

The Left’s Fatal Attraction to Crazy

By Bill Thomas

How much crazier can the progressive Left get? The short answer is a lot.

After their victory in the midterms, Democrats can assume the two-year psychodrama they inflicted upon the nation actually worked. So why stop.

Hillary Clinton’s been saying that “civility can start again” when her party regains both the House and Senate. Since that’s not going to happen for at least another election cycle, it’s a matter of public safety to wonder what the next level of crazy might be.

With President Donald Trump still in office it doesn’t take a genius to predict that the other side’s removal effort is about to shift into high gear.

Democratic strategy usually calls for mau-mauing political opponents with insults and agitation. But what happens this time around if things get out of hand?

Suppose the anti-Trump resistance redoubles its investment in the deranged and turns into something like the Weather Underground. For those who may have missed the late 1960s, that was the group led by Bill Ayers, best remembered for setting off bombs in the Pentagon and U.S. Capitol Building.

After finally surrendering to authorities, Ayers later in life was the domestic terrorist said to be “paling around” with Barack Obama when the two worked together on a project to radicalize Chicago school kids.

Here it should be noted there’s a big difference between today’s spoiled resisters and their predecessors. Not only do current crazies enjoy the support of high-level Democrats, like Obama, encouraging them to “punish our enemies.” They also have the entire mainstream media behind them, eager to blame whatever they do on Trump.

The Weather Underground, Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) and other violence-prone militants of old never got anyone’s official approval, and they never freelanced as a Democratic Party goon squad. Their goal was a Marxist-style overthrow of the government.

The SDS mission statement for Days of Rage, a nationwide anti-Vietnam War protest-turned-riot in 1969, got right to the point: “The Elections Don’t Mean Shit—Vote Where the Power Is—Our Power Is In The Street.”

Back in the day, taking it to the street almost guaranteed bloodshed. The rage in Chicago that year ended after less than an hour with 28 police injured, six members of the Weather Underground shot (none fatally), and 68 demonstrators arrested.

Times, obviously, have changed. Antifa, Black Lives Matter (BLM) and similar social justice warriors are seen by progressives as doing what needs to be done, no matter how much harm they cause. As seen recently when an Antifa mob attempted to storm Tucker Carlson’s home.

In 2016, BLM leaders were invited to the White House for a pep talk from the radical-in-chief. “They are much better organizers than I was when I was their age,” President Obama said. “I’m confident that they are going to take America to new heights.”

A year later an FBI investigation concluded that a major cause for an increase in shooting attacks on law enforcement officers was revenge inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement.

Fifty years ago, when protesting became widely popular, the political establishment was conservative and protesters were in the vanguard of the liberal counterculture.

As things heated up, even The New York Review of Books, the literary house organ of the intellectual Left, got involved. In August 1967 it published a front-page picture of a Molotov cocktail along with step-by-step instructions on how to make one.

Interesting how lefties hate guns but don’t mind explosives.

Besieged by the civil rights movement, peace marches, and the sexual revolution, all at the same time, the conservative establishment didn’t have a prayer.

Soon liberalism became the governing principle in Washington. Barack Obama’s election was thought to be the dawn of a bright progressive future. One problem: since then the Left has been in a slow and steady decline.

The political establishment is still liberal. Only now the advancing counterculture, improbably led by Donald Trump, is conservative—or at least normal.

Which is why resisters defend Democrats, their rallying cry a bogus claim that the Kremlin helped Trump steal the 2016 election. The New York Times has already reported it’s found evidence that Russians meddled in the midterms. They probably let a couple of democratic socialists get by just to cover their tracks.

Is the current generation of left-wing activists ready for a full-scale 1960s-type offensive against the president, not to mention the reaction that’s likely to follow?

Everyone saw how quickly police caught the guy accused of mailing fake pipe bombs. With Trump in the White House and a growing law-and-order mood in the country, imagine the response if real bombs start going off.

They may be crazy enough to try it, but how many pampered progressives are prepared to do the time, or worse, for the likes of Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi?

We may soon find out.

[Bill Thomas is the author of "Capital Confidential: A Century of Scandals, Secrets, and Lies in Washington" and other books.] 

From American Greatness (November 11, 2018)

'Birthright Citizenship' Is Dumb

The Bane of Birthright Citizenship

By Ed Feulner, PhD

President Trump’s critics have found something else to rend their garments over: his determination to end so-called “birthright citizenship.” Why, they thunder, it’s unconstitutional! And even if it could be changed, it can’t be by executive order.

They’re wrong on both counts.

That probably comes as a surprise to many Americans, including some who consider themselves Trump supporters. Haven’t we all been told for years that if you’re born here, you’re automatically a U.S. citizen? It’s all right there in the 14thAmendment. No matter who your parents are or what their status is, you’re an American. Simple as that.

Or is it? Consider the actual wording: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the States wherein they reside.”

Seems pretty cut and dry, but check out that crucial clause: “and subject to the jurisdiction thereof.” It’s easy to mumble over it, but we shouldn’t. The Senate included it there for a reason when they passed the Amendment in 1868: to make it clear that not everyone born here is automatically a citizen.

Being born here is only half the equation. You also must be “subject to the jurisdiction thereof.” The original proposed wording of the Amendment did not include that phrase. It was inserted specifically to make it clear that the law did not, in fact, confer citizenship on everyone born here.

Sen. Jacob Howard of Michigan, a member of the Joint Committee on Reconstruction and a strong supporter of the Citizenship Clause, noted that Congress intended to exclude “persons born in the United States who are foreigners, aliens, [or] who belong to the families of ambassadors or foreign ministers accredited to the Government of the United States.” Supreme Court cases decided in the years soon after the Amendment’s passage confirm this view.

Moreover, says constitutional scholar Edward Erler: “It is hard to conclude that the framers of the 14th Amendment intended to confer citizenship on the children of aliens illegally present when they explicitly denied that boon to Native Americans  legally present but subject to a foreign jurisdiction.”

Notes Hillsdale College’s Matthew Spalding: “Few developed nations … practice the rule of jus soli, or ‘right of the soil.’ More common is jus sanguinis, ‘right of blood,’ by which a child’s citizenship determined by parental citizenship, not place of birth.”

In short, it was wise of Congress to limit the scope of the Amendment. And those who misinterpret it are wrong. President Trump should be commended for trying to bring current understanding back in line with the original intent of the framers.

That leaves us with the question of whether he would be right to set this issue straight via an executive order. Some people who agree with him on birthright citizenship, such as National Review’s Andrew C. McCarthy, believe that he shouldn’t. They argue that it should be done by the same body that issued the Amendment in the first place: Congress.

In other words, this is a job for Congress, the branch of government that creates our laws, not the executive, which enforces them.

According to McCarthy, a president cannot “unilaterally change an understanding of the law that has been in effect for decades under a duly enacted federal law.”

Granted, but as constitutional scholar Hans von Spakovsky points out, “that assumes the ‘understanding’ is the correct one. If that understanding actually violates the plain text and intent of the law, the president as the chief law-enforcement officer can, and indeed has an obligation, to direct the federal government to begin applying and enforcing it correctly.”

To put it another way, the president here would not be attempting to make a new law, but to enforce the correct view of an existing law.

Sure, his order would be immediately challenged. Perhaps we’d even wind up with Congress clarifying the original intent of the law.

All the more reason to do it. Fairness demands that we get this issue settled — and soon.

[Ed Feulner is founder of The Heritage Foundation.]

From The Washington Times (November 5, 2018)