Today in Liberty: House to vote on Ryan budget, Second Amendment hero passes away

“Don’t hurt people, and don’t take their stuff. That’s it, in a nutshell. Everyone should be free to live their lives as they think best, free from meddling by politicians and government bureaucrats, as long as they don’t hurt other people, or take other people’s stuff.”Matt Kibbe

— White House suggests amendment to limit free speech: While Shaun McCutcheon was touting last week’s big win for the First Amendment, White House Adviser Dan Pfeiffer preached doom and gloom, suggesting that a constitutional amendment to limit free speech “may be the only option” to undo recent court rulings.

— House to vote on Ryan budget: The House of Representatives will hold a vote this week on “The Path to Prosperity,” the FY 2015 budget introduced last week by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI). Though the proposal does some good things, like reform Medicare and repeal Obamacare, it increases spending by $1.2 trillion over the next 10 years. House Republican leaders have the votes to pass the measure, though it’s an exercise in futility given that the Senate has rejected the idea of passing a budget this year. The proposal is more about the election than anything else.

— How Club for Growth shakes things up: The pro-free market organization hasn’t been as active this year as it has in the past, but it continues to be thorn in the side of the Republican establishment. Politico has a four-page story on Club for Growth this morning that offers a look at everything from its endorsement process to election strategy in 2014.

— McConnell is a big a danger as Obama: That’s what Glenn Beck told a crowd of grassroots activists this weekend in a nearly 40-minute speech at FreedomWorks’ FreePAC Kentucky. “Mitch McConnell,” the conservative media figure said, “is as big of a danger to our country as Barack Obama is.” Beck and FreedomWorks are looking to give Matt Bevin, McConnell’s challenger, a boost ahead of next month’s Republican primary.

— FreePAC offers candidates a platform: The event featured other conservative primary challengers, including Matt Bevin (Kentucky), Igor Birman (CA-07), Dan Bongino (MD-06), and Chris McDaniel (Mississippi). FreedomWorks President Matt Kibbe and former Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli also rallied the crowd.

— RIP, Second Amendment hero: Otis McDonald, the plaintiff in the landmark gun rights case, McDonald v. Chicago (2010), has passed away at the age of 80. “He thought it was unjust that his city essentially barred him and his neighbors from owning the most common tool of self-protection, the handgun,” Brian Doherty writes of McDonald. “In the wake of the 2008 Heller decision, which prohibited the federal government from violating our Second Amendment right to own commonly used weapons for self-defense in the home, Mr. McDonald became lead plaintiff in a case that went to the Supreme Court in 2010, challenging the city of Chicago’s ban on handgun ownership.”

— What Fifth Amendment?: A lawsuit filed against the Obama administration over the extrajudicial murders of three American citizens was dismissed on Friday. “Defendants must be trusted and expected to act in accordance with the U.S. Constitution when they intentionally target a U.S. citizen abroad at the direction of the president and with the concurrence of Congress,” wrote U.S. District Judge Rosemary Collyer. “They cannot be held personally responsible in monetary damages for conducting war.” The suit was filed by Nasser al-Awlaki, father of Anwar al-Awlaki and grandfather of Abdulrahman al-Awlaki, both of whom were American citizens. The two were killed in separate drone strikes in Yemen in 2011. Basically, the Fifth Amendment is just a suggestion. Presidents aren’t expected to actually follow it.

— Insurers limit health policy sales: If you were hoping to find an individual health insurance policy after the Obamacare open enrollment period ended, you may be out of luck. The Associated Press recently noted that insurers have, basically, shut down sales between April and November. “If you didn’t have an open enrollment period, you would have people who would potentially enroll when they get sick and dis-enroll when they get better,” an insurance company spokesman told the AP. “The only insured people would be sick people, which would make insurance unaffordable for everyone.” It makes sense why insurers would do this, but still, it leaves a lot of people out of luck if they missed the open enrollment window.

— “What’s good enough for you is good enough for me”: The Goonies 2 is happening, folks. It’s actually happening! “‘We’re doing a sequel,’ Donner said while signing autographs for some lucky fans,” the Huffington Post reported over the weekend. “According to the director, discussions are ongoing with the film’s original cast, which included Josh Brolin, Martha Plimpton, Corey Feldman and Sean Astin.” The original had some libertarian themes. The underlying story of The Goonies , the seizing of private property for economic development, is similar to the real-life events surrounding Kelo v. New London. Only Susette Kelo and other families in New London’s Fort Trumball neighborhood didn’t have a happy ending.

— Kevin Spacey backs Venezuela protesters: Unlike some in Hollywood, the House of Cards star is standing in solidarity with student protesters in Venezuela. “These students were standing for basic human freedoms and engaging in the right to protest, which is a sacred right whether in Boston, Belarus, or Venezuela. The government of Venezuela responded with heavy-handed repression,” Spacey wrote on his blog. “I support all of the Venezuelans who peacefully and non-violently claim their right to self-determination and protest. I hope you will join me in asking them not to give up and to not become numb to the violations and abuses committed against them. We who are fortunate enough to live in freedom must stand up to oppression and injustice and remind the Venezuelan people that they are on the right side of history.”

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