The discussion between Dr. Lawson and Congressman Price at the TROSA forum on October 13 was an interesting one, to say the least. The Durham Herald Sun wrote an particularly fascinating report on the discussion between the two candidates on drug-related issues:
Lawson and Price sparred over issues including health care and law enforcement, especially enforcement of drug laws.
When I started my campaign last November, the national debt was tipping the scales at $9.3 trillion. Today it is over $10.1 trillion.
To add insult to this obvious injury, our Senate and then House just passed a juiced-up bailout package that includes an additional $150 billion of random acts of fiscal irresponsibility beyond the $700 billion revolving credit line to be used by our Treasury to buy questionable assets from troubled banks.
The vast majority of Americans were against this bailout, and for good reason — it is not going to work. Economists and those who understand the banking system understand that the administration’s plan will not fix the underlying problems of trust and solvency. Instead, it simply allows our Treasury secretary to pay above-market prices for troubled assets to bailout out foreign and domestic banks. It creates no jobs, gives no significant relief to struggling homeowners, and severely threatens our sovereign credit rating.
This is just the first of 10 videos that show the debate between BJ Lawson and David Price in it’s entirety. They are all worth watching and we can be proud of the excellent job BJ did representing the principles of truth and liberty.
You can catch the rest at BJ’s Youtube Channel.
There have been a few different stories about ObamaCare that have popped up over the past couple days that paint a picture of how the law is hurting both businesses and average Americans.
On Tuesday, CBS News reported that a survey of employers shows that they are worried that insurance costs will rise due to ObamaCare. The Associated Press reported yesterday that health coverage may be too expensive for low-wage workers as employers will have to provide more costly insurance plans.
Now, members of Congress are worried that their health insurance premiums will rise because of a provision in ObamaCare that eliminates taxpayer-funded subsidies. How’s this for irony?:
Dozens of lawmakers and aides are so afraid that their health insurance premiums will skyrocket next year thanks to Obamacare that they are thinking about retiring early or just quitting.
The fear: Government-subsidized premiums will disappear at the end of the year under a provision in the health care law that nudges aides and lawmakers onto the government health care exchanges, which could make their benefits exorbitantly expensive.
Democratic and Republican leaders are taking the issue seriously, but first they need more specifics from the Office of Personnel Management on how the new rule should take effect — a decision that Capitol Hill sources expect by fall, at the latest. The administration has clammed up in advance of a ruling, sources on both sides of the aisle said.
There has been a lot of outrage and surprise expressed by members of Congress over the mounting scandals coming out the Obama Administration. But perhaps the real scandal is that the Congress is often complicit when Americans liberties are violated by out-of-control administrations.
During a speech yesterday on the House floor, Congressman Thomas Massie (R-KY) pointedly told his colleagues in Washington to “wake up” to the sort of overreach and abuses of civil liberties that are being committed by the government.
“Can’t we see what’s happening? In just the past month we discovered that the NSA is snooping on millions of innocent Americans using the PATRIOT ACT (Congress wrote the Patriot Act!), the IRS is targeting conservative organizations using the tax code (Congress created that tax code), and DHS has 200 million hollow-point bullets stockpiled (Congress funded DHS — just last week!),” explained Massie. “You want me to be surprised? I’m not surprised… I’m outraged! But what’s happening here? In each case of executive overreach, Congress gave an inch, and the executive branch took a mile.”
Massie noted that the outrage from members over the scandals is hypocritical. They complain and investigate then, he said, “Congress turns around and funds and encourages more unconstitutional behavior.”
“If we don’t reverse this trend, we can kiss our civil liberties good–bye,” said Massie.
“The Constitution embodies American principles that men and women have fought and died to protect. We swore an oath to it. Mr Speaker, I encourage my colleagues to reflect on the damage that CISPA, the PATRIOT Act, and the NDAA have wrought on our civil liberties, and implore my fellow members to uphold the constitutional rights they swore to protect,” he added. “Don’t yield one inch.”
Watch Massie’s full speech below:
The initial claim about the IRS’s discrimination against Tea Party and conservative groups was that it was the product of low-level employees in the agency’s Cincinnati office acting on their own without any directive from higher up the chain of command. Some employees have challenged that notion, explaining that such invasive scrutiny would have come from higher-ranking officials.
While members of Congress are investigating the issue to find out why they weren’t notified when senior IRS officials learned of the discrimination and if the White House had anything to do with it, Ben Swann, an investigative reporter at Cincinnati-based Fox 19, has named the IRS employees involved in the scandal and the manager at the center of it all.
Swann followed up on this report on with another interesting aspect of the story that could lead to further questioning, this time under oath, of these Cincinnati-based IRS employees:
This issue brings out strong feelings on both sides of the debate, there’s no question about that, and there has been a lot of misinformation that has been floated about the Gang of Eight’s proposal. While immigration reform is something that Congress must eventually address, there is a right way to go about it, but this bill is simply not it.
On Tuesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee cleared the immigration reform bill, which set the stage to bring it to the full chamber for debate next month. Perhaps the most glaring concern with the bill was mentioned in The Hill’s story on its passage out of committee (emphasis mine):
The legislation raises caps on high-skilled workers and creates a new visa program for low-skilled workers.
It would allocate billions of dollars to securing the southwestern border and tracking visas at airports and seaports around the country. It would make E-Verify mandatory for employers across the country in order to crack down on illegal workers and deter future waves of illegal immigration
The legislation passed by a vote of 13 to 5 with three Republicans joining 10 Democrats to approve the measure. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has said it will come to the floor next month.
That’s a big problem and should be a dealbreaker for privacy advocates. Jim Harper, director of information policy studies at the Cato Institute, explained last month that this troubling aspect of the immigration reform bill is the “path to a national ID” system:
The Department of Justice came under fire this past week for its subpoena of Associated Press phone records without any notice to the news agency or targeted reporters. While Attorney General Eric Holder claims that the action was a response to a national security threat, it was actually part of the Obama Administration’s continuing war on whistleblowers and, as many see it, a shot directly at the free press, which is protected by the First Amendment.
The controversy has brought new attention on the need to protect Americans from this sort of government overreach. on Thursday, Reps. Justin Amash (R-MI), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Mick Mulvaney (R-SC), and Jared Polis (D-CO) joined together to introduce H.R. 2014, the Telephone Records Protection Act, which would protect all Americans from this sort of government overreach:
“Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program.” — Milton Friedman
Did you know that the federal government has a Helium Reserve? We all know that there is a lot of hot air in Washington, but Congress has been stashing away helium since 1925, much like they do with oil. While most see how wasteful this is and that the private sector is stepping in to deal with the perceived helium crisis, Congress could not bring itself to axe the Federal Helium Program, continuing it by a vote of 394 to 1:
President Ronald Reagan tried to get rid of it. So did President Bill Clinton. This October, their wish is finally set to come true.
The Federal Helium Program — left over from the age of zeppelins and an infamous symbol of Washington’s inability to cut what it no longer needs — will be terminated.
Unless it isn’t.
On Friday, in fact, the House voted 394 to 1 to keep it alive.
The program at the center of this debate has its origins after World War I, in a kind of arms race that sounds ridiculous now. In Europe, countries such as Germany were building sturdy, if slow, inflatable airships. The U.S. military was worried about a blimp gap.
So Congress ordered a stockpile of helium to help American dirigibles catch up. It was assumed to be a temporary arrangement.
“As soon as private companies produce [helium], the government will, perhaps, withdraw?” asked Rep. Don Colton (R-Utah) during the House debate.
Let’s recap for a moment. In 2010, Congress passed ObamaCare, a law that imposes a litany of mandates, including a requirement on every American to purchase health insurance coverage, and some 20,000 pages of regulations. Despite promises to the contrary, Americans are now seeing their premiums go up and many are facing either changes to their coverage or losing it entirely; as was predicted by opponents of ObamaCare before it was ever passed.
But now Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) working on a deal that would exempt themselves, other members of Congress and their staffers from the law:
Congressional leaders in both parties are engaged in high-level, confidential talks about exempting lawmakers and Capitol Hill aides from the insurance exchanges they are mandated to join as part of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, sources in both parties said.
The talks — which involve Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), the Obama administration and other top lawmakers — are extraordinarily sensitive, with both sides acutely aware of the potential for political fallout from giving carve-outs from the hugely controversial law to 535 lawmakers and thousands of their aides. Discussions have stretched out for months, sources said.
A source close to the talks says: “Everyone has to hold hands on this and jump, or nothing is going to get done.”