Jason Pye

Recent Posts From Jason Pye

Common Core support is crumbling: Opponents still have a long way to go, but they’re shifting the narrative

There is a growing movement inside Congress and states legislatures to fight back against the Common Core State Standards Initiative, and it looks like it’s beginning to bear some fruit. Over at Reason, Robby Soave reports on a new poll showing the tide turning against the the college- and career-ready standards:

The numbers come courtesy of an Education Next poll. In 2013, 65 percent of people supported Common Core. That number fell to a slim 53 percent majority this year—much of that support coming from Democrats, who remained largely unchanged in their overall opinion.

The results for both Republicans and teachers are even more staggering, however. The Republican numbers changed from 57 percent in favor to just 43 percent in favor and the teachers changed from 76 percent in favor to 46 percent.

These results are significant, since they chip away at key assertions made by the backers of Common Core. The backers have often maintained that opposition to Common Core stems from misinformation and that those who understand the new standards best—i.e., teachers—liked them just fine. That is clearly no longer true.

The premise of Common Core is that the same education standards would be applied across the United States. States that participate in Common Core are allowed to develop their math and language arts curricula.

There’s at least one Democrat who wants Barack Obama to help out his campaign, and here’s why he may regret it

Charlie Crist is bucking the trend. While most Democrats running competitive races in purple and red states don’t want to come anywhere near President Barack Obama and his administration, Crist, who is running for governor of Florida as a Democrat, isn’t exactly shying away:

While some high-profile Democrats are distancing themselves from President Obama on the campaign trial, Florida gubernatorial hopeful Charlie Crist isn’t one of them.

When asked Tuesday if would welcome the president’s campaign help, Crist responded, “I hope so,” the Tampa Bay Times reported.

“I hope everybody does,” said the Republican-turned-independent-turned-Democrat.

It’s almost like Crist hasn’t learned from that ill-advised hug he gave President Obama in 2009 when the commander-in-chief visited Florida to promote the stimulus bill. Crist was a Republican governor at the time who was also seeking the state’s open Senate seat.

The hug Crist shared with President Obama as well as his general squishiness on issues turned out to be a boon for Marco Rubio. Crist left the Republican Party and became an independent, though one seeking Democrat support. Rubio won the race. Crist decided that he’d give electoral politics another go, this time as a full-fledged Democrat.

This liberty-minded Republican took the Ice Bucket Challenge in honor of a constituent suffering from ALS

If you spend any time on Facebook, then you’ve probably seen videos of friends dumping ice water on themselves to raise awareness to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, or “Lou Gehrig’s Disease”).

The viral campaign — which has been promoted by celebrities — has been a resounding success, raising nearly $23 million for the ALS Association in the last three weeks. Politicians are also participating. Among them is Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI), a libertarian-leaning conservative with a knack for social media.

Amash was nominated for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, and he accepted on Tuesday, allowing each of his three children to dump icy cold water on top of his head. “I accept today in honor of Julia Bauer, who taught me about ALS through her visits to my office each year,” he said. “And she has faced the disease with a lot of courage. And this is in honor of her.”

Here’s the absolutely brutal video Rick Perry released slamming the district attorney who indicted him

Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) is pulling no punches to explain why he vetoed $7.5 million of public funding for the Texas Public Integrity Unit, the watchdog agency led by Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg.

Lehmberg, a Democrat, won an indictment against Perry on Friday claiming that he abused his power when he vetoed the funding to pressure her to resign from office. The state’s constitution, in Article IV, Section 14, provides the governor with a line-item veto, meaning that Perry can strike any appropriation he opposes.

Perry, in a veto message to the state legislature, acknowledged the “otherwise good work of the Public Integrity Unit’s employees,” but explained that he could no longer provide state support “at a time when the person charged with ultimate responsibility of the unit has lost the public’s confidence.”

Lehmberg was arrested in April 2013 for driving under the influence. Her behavior after her arrest, needless to say, is unbecoming of a public official. And Perry’s PAC is going to great lengths to show you how bizarre the Travis County district attorney acted.

The two-minute video produced by RickPAC features clips from the traffic stop at which Lehmberg was arrested as well as footage from the jail. The clips show Lehmberg resisting jailers, sticking her tongue at them, and kicking the door to her holding cell. There is also footage of her in a restraint chair, a precaution that jailers took given her erratic behavior.

Back on vacation: Obama leaves Washington to work on his golf game

As expected, President Barack Obama left Washington yesterday afternoon to return to his vacation in Martha’s Vineyard, though the White House won’t say why exactly he came back to the nation’s capital, according to The Hill, except to say that some meetings were involved:

Obama’s two days in Washington were mostly quiet, and concluded with the president receiving his daily national security briefing in the morning, and joining Vice President Biden to huddle with members of his economic team in the afternoon.

Administration officials have insisted for weeks that the president just wanted to return to the White House for a series of meetings, but the explanation was met with a healthy dose of skepticism, since Obama rarely interrupts his vacations.
[…]
Speculation for why Obama returned focused around the possibility of a secret foreign leader meeting or the roll out of a new administration initiative on immigration or corporate taxes.

But no such explanation materialized.

Watch this hilarious video of anti-gun leftists shooting firearms for the first time

This is the true story of five strangers picked to live in a house and have their lives taped to find out what happens when people stop being polite and start getting real. The Real World…

Whoops. Sorry. Wrong story.

Anyway, via BuzzFeed comes this video of five Second Amendment-hating hipsters who visited the Los Angeles Gun Club to fire a gun for the first time. The quartet’s experience didn’t change their positions on gun control, but their reactions during target practice are absolutely adorable.

“You don’t realize that, in real life, when you shoot a gun, from just firing once, it took a lot out of me,” said Gaby, one of the participants. “I was like, I fired once, and I wanted to take a nap.” Another participant, Abe, told BuzzFeed that cocking a shotgun made him feel like a “badass.”

Gaffe-prone Hillary Clinton plans join Nancy Pelosi to raise money for House Democrats

Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will spend some time away from promoting her book, making hilarious gaffes, and earning $225,000 per speech to join House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) to raise money for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC):

A Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee aide said the former secretary of State will join Pelosi in her home district this fall as part of Clinton’s midterm campaign tour. She’s also expected to headline fundraisers for the rest of the party’s major campaign committees, and will kick off her fall campaign schedule with an appearance at Sen. Tom Harkin’s (D-Iowa) annual steak fry next month.

DCCC Chairman Steve Israel (N.Y.) said Democrats are “thrilled and grateful” that Clinton plans to help the party as they fight to pick up seats in the House this fall.

“Secretary Clinton is an extraordinary force for our values and will relentlessly fight to jumpstart the middle class. We’re thrilled and grateful that she is lending her support to our shared goal of electing a Democratic House of Representatives that will put a stop to the endless cycle of dysfunction and shutdowns from this Republican Congress,” he said.

Watchdog group sues the “most transparent administration in history” for allowing the White House to obstruct document release

President Barack Obama’s White House has interfered with Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests over the release of communications with a dozen federal agencies, according to a lawsuit filed on Monday by Cause of Action, a government watchdog organization.

Cause of Action has sued ten cabinet agencies — including the Departments of Justice, Treasury, and Health and Human Services — the Internal Revenue Service, and the White House Office of Management and Budget for allowing the White House to influence the FOIA process and delay response to document requests.

“Accountable and transparent government does not involve instructing agencies to send politically sensitive records to the White House for review,” said Dan Epstein, executive director of Cause of Action, in a press release announcing the lawsuit. “The bureaucracy has violated the law by stonewalling the public’s access to documents for political reasons.”

“Cause of Action’s own investigation reveals that the White House is actually demanding access from agencies to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests and Congressional document requests, as well as the documents subject to those requests, in a manner that may obstruct congressional oversight and violate the spirit of FOIA,” he added.

It’s a full-blown scandal: Mary Landrieu comes under fire for two more taxpayer-funded trips that included campaign fundraisers

The last several days have been a big headache for Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA). She was caught using taxpayer dollars to charter a flight from New Orleans to a campaign fundraiser in Lake Charles. Then, a couple days later, a second taxpayer-funded flight to a campaign fundraiser was discovered.

While her campaign has played down the trips as an oversight and promised to reimburse the Senate for the improper trips out of campaign funds, Politico has discovered two more fundraising trips, these from 2012, that were paid for by her official Senate office:

On Aug. 23, 2012, Butler Aviation charged $6,787 for an in-state flight for Landrieu that included multiple stops. The flight was from New Orleans to Vidalia to Shreveport to Alexandria and back to New Orleans, according to official disbursement records Landrieu filed with the secretary of the Senate.

On Oct. 18, 2012, Butler Aviation charged $3,437 for a Landrieu flight from New Orleans to Opelousas to Patterson and back to New Orleans.

And then they came for the delicious cheeseburger: Climate alarmists want to take beef off the menu

cheeseburger

Ron White, whom you may remember from the Blue Collar Comedy Tour, once talked about a friend who railed against the raising of cattle because it was bad for the environment. “What are you doing to help the environment?” the friend asked, according to White, to which the comedian replied, “I’m eatin’ the cows.”

It makes for a hilarious joke in a comedy routine. But there are actually people out there who want people to swear off beef because, they suggest, it’s harmful our health and bad for the environment. Jayson Lusk, a professor at Oklahoma State University, explains the thinking of these radical environmentalists:

The documentary film “Cowspiracy,” released this week in select cities, builds on the growing cultural notion that the single greatest environmental threat to the planet is the hamburger you had for lunch the other day. As director Kip Andersen recently told the Source magazine: “A lot of us are waking up and realizing we can choose to either support all life on this planet or kill all life on this planet, simply by virtue of what we eat day in and day out. One way to eat takes life, while another spares as many lives (plant, animal and otherwise) as possible.”

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