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David Barton Says Toyota's Prius Commercial Is Feeding A 'Distaste For Authority'

David Barton invited Bishop Harry Jackson on to his "WallBuilders Live" radio program today to promote his "Operation Blue Shield" effort, which seeks to bring "citizens, governments, law enforcement and first responders ... together to reduce crime."

Prior to interviewing Jackson, Barton lamented that American culture is feeding a "distaste for authority," pointing to a commercial run by Toyota during the Super Bowl featuring a group of bank robbers trying to outrun the police in a Prius.

"The distaste for authority that we're feeding in a very cultural way," he said. "If you look even at the Prius commercials that are running right now, they're humorous commercials, they're creative, but it all starts with some guys trying to rob a bank and while they were trying to rob the bank, their car got towed and so they have to jack a Prius and now the cops haven't been able to catch them. And so commercial after commercial, you've got the cops chasing these four guys in a Prius and the guys inside are just on a vacation, having fun. It all started with them robbing a bank! Now how is that a good deal? That's, again, breaking laws, rejecting authority, and so we're sending the wrong message all the way around."

Yet Again, David Barton Falsely Claims The Average Welfare Family Receives $61,000 A Year In Benefits

On his radio program last week, Glenn Beck dedicated a segment to ripping Donald Trump as a man who simply doesn't care about the truth of anything that he says, asserting that Trump is rarely called out for his lies and when, he is, neither he nor his supporters really even care about his rampant dishonesty.

"The truth doesn't matter to him," Beck said. "The truth is completely irrelevant to Donald Trump."

At the time, we thought that pretty much the same thing could be said about Beck's good pal, David Barton, who also seems to have no qualms about repeating demonstrable falsehoods over and over again because he knows that his supporters will reflexively accept anything he says while ignoring all the criticism that his work receives.

And nothing better demonstrates this very point than the most recent episode of Barton's "Foundations of Freedom" series, in which he was joined by none other than Glenn Beck and where he repeated, for the fourth time, his false claim that families on welfare receive $61,000 a year in government benefits.

"Right now, if you're on welfare in America," Barton stated, "there are 80 anti-poverty programs in America. Those 80 anti-poverty programs, spread out over the poor, the average amount that goes through those poverty programs to those who are designated to be poor,  $61,000 a year. The poor in America, right now, make more that the starting salary of a teacher in 11 states, more than the starting salary of a secretary in 39 states. If you're in Hawaii, unless you're making a salary of over $61,000 a year, there is no reason for you to get off poverty."

As we have pointed out every time we have heard Barton make this assertion, this entirely misleading claim was first put forth by the Republicans on the Senate Budget Committee back in 2012 and was, as the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities explained, derived by relying on "a series of serious manipulations of the data that violate basic analytic standards and are used to produce a potentially inflammatory result."

But the simple fact that this claim is totally false is not going to stop Barton from endlessly repeating it ... nor will it stop Beck from gladly standing with him.

Glenn Beck: 'The Constitution Comes' And 'All Of A Sudden We Have Microwave Ovens'

On his radio program today, Glenn Beck reiterated his warning that people who don't vote for Ted Cruz will face eternal consequences because God gave us the Constitution ... which allowed us to create the microwave.

Once again echoing W. Cleon Skousen's book "The Five Thousand Year Leap," Beck argued that Cruz is the only presidential candidate who will defend the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, which he said are sacred documents given to us by God for the purpose of protecting our God-given rights for future generations so that America would be free to create things like microwaves and airplanes.

"Just like George Washington didn't have any idea that electricity would come and television would come and we would walk on the moon and we would free Germany and we would save the Jews in Europe," Beck said, "and that our country would restore and be the leader of putting Israel back on the map. He had no idea those things were coming. But it is because of that document God allowed those things to happen."

"For 5,000 years, we had a fireplace, we had a fire pit," he continued. "The Constitution comes, all of a sudden we have microwave ovens! Nobody thought of that?"

"Leonardo da Vinci couldn't figure out that the top of the wing needed to bend. Instead, he just kept making everything perfectly flat. But after the Constitution, after men are set free, after we start dedicating ourselves to God, all of a sudden we can just figure out that little curve will give us lift to lift the airplanes? Wow, that seems pretty simple, doesn't it?"

The White Horse Prophecy: Glenn Beck Tells Utah That God Has Chosen The Mormons To Save America By Electing Ted Cruz

Back in 1843, Joseph Smith, the founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, supposedly delivered a message known as "The White Horse Prophecy" that declared that one day, when the U.S. Constitution was hanging by a thread, the Mormon people would rise up and save this nation.

This is how Brigham Young reportedly explained it in 1854:

Will the Constitution be destroyed? No; it will be held inviolate by this people; and, as Joseph Smith said, “The time will come when the destiny of the nation will hang upon a single thread. At that critical juncture, this people will step forth and save it from the threatened destruction."

In 2010, the LDS church issued an official statement that "the so-called 'White Horse Prophecy' is based on accounts that have not been substantiated by historical research and is not embraced as Church doctrine," but that didn't stop Glenn Beck from repeatedly invoking it as he campaigned for Ted Cruz and Sen. Mike Lee in Utah over the weekend.

Beck spent all last week declaring that God has spent the last 10 years preparing and sanctifying his audience to rise up at this very moment and save the republic by electing Ted Cruz as president. But when he went to Utah, Beck made it unmistakably clear to his fellow Mormons that God is using them to save America because evangelical Christians "are not listening to their God," a reference to southern evangelical Republicans who have voted for Donald Trump.

When Beck spoke at a rally for Sen. Lee's re-election in Draper on Saturday, he explicitly invoked the language of the White Horse Prophecy.

"It's something that Utah needs to hear," he said. "The body of the Priesthood is known to stand up when the Constitution hangs by a thread. I am a convert to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in 2000. What attracted me was not only the truth of the message, but also the people like President [Harold] Lee and President [Ezra Taft] Benson, who knew exactly who we were, knew who we were as a country. Many times, what held me through was the prophecy that the Constitution will hang by a thread and this people would remember what our founders did. It is our responsibility to stand for the Constitution!"

Beck echoed that message while campaigning for Cruz in Provo, telling the audience that he had a "special message for the people of Utah."

"I believe the Book of Mormon," he said. "I believe it to be true. I believe every word of it ... That book spells out in great detail what things look like before the Lord comes back. And He gave us that book so we can protect freedom here. He also gave us that book so we would know what to do at the time. Now you either believe that or you don't. You either believe that to be true, it's not just a book; then let the Priesthood lead! Priesthood holders, stand up and take your staff! You are the guardian at the gate."

While speaking at another Cruz rally in Salt Lake City, Beck said that it was up to the Mormons to save this nation because "the evangelicals are not listening to their God."

"Let me testify to you now," he stated. "The Book of Mormon is a book that was given to us for this time in this land and it explains exactly what it's going to look like when trouble comes ... You know what time it is, the Priesthood is supposed to rise up and restore the Constitution. Now is that time!"

"Utah has an incredible opportunity," he continued. "So many Christians have been standing up, but all throughout the South, the evangelicals are not listening to their God. Let us raise a standard in Utah. Let us do this one thing perfectly right."

Glenn Beck: Failure To Elect Ted Cruz Will Leave Us Will Blood On Our Hands

Glenn Beck told his live television audience last night that it was up to them to warn everyone they can about the dangers of not electing Ted Cruz as president, saying that those who fail to do so will have blood on their hands.

Beck said he would be out on the campaign trail for Cruz again this weekend "because that's what I can do" and that others have to do whatever they can "because we are on the Titanic, it's going down"

"Knock on every single door," Beck told them. "They don't want to come? Fine. Don't waste time. The Titanic is going down. But you knock on every single door, 'Can I tell you about the truth? Can I tell you about the truth? Can I tell you about the truth, because here's what's coming.' They don't want to hear it, up to them."

Citing the biblical prophet Ezekiel, Beck said that "religious people" will be held eternally responsible for their failure to warn others that total disaster is rapidly approaching.

"The blood of the people who could have been saved," Beck stated, "now think of this, because we're talking about the rights of all mankind; if America goes down — this isn't hyperbole any more, this isn't like a famous Reagan speech that he gave — this is real. If we go away, where is freedom? So all of the freedom that will be lost, all of lives that will be lost because we refused to pay attention, [will be] on our hands."

Gordon Klingenschmitt Praises School Board For Standing Up To Evil, Sinful, Demonically Inspired Federal Judge

On a recent "Pray In Jesus Name" program, Religious Right activist and Colorado state Rep. Gordon Klingenschmitt praised members of a California school board for standing up to what he said was an evil and sinful judge who had ordered them to stop using public board meetings to proselytize on behalf of Christianity.

The Chino Valley Unified School board voted 3-2 earlier this month to appeal a court ruling from U.S. District Judge Jesus Berna ordering an end to the practice of "reciting prayers, Bible readings, and proselytizing at board meetings," and Klingenschmitt voiced his support for the board's effort to resist this demonically inspired ruling.

"Even this judge, whose first name is Jesus, hates Jesus," Klingenschmitt said. "So what is going on with this judge, who is he listening to? There is an invisible demonic spirit that is whispering to him, 'Abuse your power, judge. Turn the First Amendment upside down and ban religious expression with the power of the government sword.' And that's what this judge is doing and that sin is his voluntary cooperation with the demonic spirit that is influencing him."

Klingenschmitt said that he was grateful for the decision to appeal the ruling "because we need a holy judge to overturn this evil judge."

Glenn Beck's Audience 'Will Be Remembered In History As Saving The Republic'

Glenn Beck opened his radio program today by telling his audience that all of the predictions he has made over the last 10 years are now all coming to fruition and that is why God has been preparing this audience for this very moment to rise up and save this nation.

And while Beck has been making this same statement for most of the last two years, now he really means it because this summer is going to be 1968 all over again, when America will see riots and assassinations and Beck's audience will be America's only hope.

At one point, Beck actually hauled out his trusty chalkboard and listed a bunch of the "accurate" predictions that he has made over the last 10 years to illustrate just how right he has been all along.

"In 1999, I told you about Osama bin Laden," Beck said. "In 2004, I started warning about the housing collapse. All the way from 2004 to 2008, I was warning about the housing and banking collapse. In 2003, I started interviewing people in the GOP and said, 'You better be careful, they're going to come for you with pitchforks and torches, don't you understand what's happening, don't you understand what you're doing? This means the downfall of the GOP. In 2008, I said they're going to start admitting that they're Marxists and socialists. In 2010, the caliphate. In 2006, the Bubba Effect. In 2009, the pendulum swing and the rise of the radical right here in America. In 2010, I started telling you about top down, bottom up, inside out. In 2014, I started telling you that it was 1968, this summer would be 1968. Those are just some of them."

Despite this amazing track record, everyone continues to mock him, but Beck doesn't mind because he knows that this has all been part of God's plan.

"This is the time," he said. "And this is the time where we're going to build lifeboats. This is the time where we're going to be the group of people that will be remembered in history as saving the republic."

Pastor Who Said Gay Marriage Is An 'Attempted Gang Rape Of Our Culture' Endorses Ted Cruz

As we have noted several times before, people who hate gays sure do seem to love Ted Cruz, and to that ever-growing list we can now add Mark Creech of the Christian Action League of North Carolina, who endorsed Cruz last week:

We are witnessing possibly the most dangerous time in American history. It's not that our great country hasn't faced incredible challenges in the past, but today the enemies of our Republic strike at the heart of our national identity – the meaning of America. Such issues will determine the preservation of liberty for the generations to come.

Although the Christian Action League concedes there are many pressing considerations in choosing a President, none are more important than marriage and family, restoring a culture of life, and preserving our first right – the right to practice one's faith freely. No current candidate in the Democratic field demonstrates a proper commitment to any of these necessary supports for a healthy society. All the candidates in the GOP field have shown some commitment to these three, either with lip service or some demonstration of allegiance, but none has the long track record of their zealous defense and promotion as Senator Ted Cruz.

Creech is sort of right-wing activist who asserts that "hunger is rampant in India" because the people there have not embraced Christianity and that President Obama could be the Antichrist, so naturally he has some pretty strong feelings about gay people as well:

  • He has declared that homosexuality is "impure," "dirty," and "disgusting."
  • He said that those who identify as gay are insulting God: "What an insult to God to say that we are something other than what he really created us. We’re either born male or female and are meant to express our masculinity or femininity in a way consistent with God’s creation."
  • He warned that there is nothing loving about accepting gay relationships: "No one who is thoughtful can possibly believe that something as unnatural as the act of a man placing that part of his body which was designed to project life into that part of another man's body meant to expel death could possibly be a healthy lifestyle under any circumstances."
  • He proclaimed that homosexuality is worse than other sins because "the consequences of homosexual behavior can be considerably more grievous than some other sins. Homosexuality is unique in that it is especially abhorrent to God and constitutes a significantly perverse and wicked lifestyle that clearly shows that one is far removed from Him."
  • He has said that gay-friendly churches are a satanic "fifth column."
  • He warned that court decisions in favor of gay marriage are a sign of the End Times:  "Such court decisions are certainly a sign of the times – a sign that we are heading for an impending judgment. This matter burdens my heart greatly nearly every day, sometimes with tears."
  • He said that acceptance of homosexuality will lead to persecution of Christians: "These events of late prove, without question, that the normalization of homosexual behavior in the culture and the legalization of same-sex marriage will inevitably usher in a flood of religious persecutions for Christians who dare say homosexuality is a sin."
  • He stated that the push for gay marriage is an attempt to rape society: "No longer were their shameful sins simply tolerated by a permissive society, but it had gone much further than that. Now these people were an open, aggressive and insistent force, in a city where none dare interfere. Their behavior was not looked upon as criminal, but as constitutional. Yet as they pushed upon Lot's door to knock it down, their actions were nothing less than an attempted gang rape.Today, it is the same. I suggest the defying of marriage laws by gays and lesbians in California, New York, Illinois, New Mexico, and Oregon — the foisting of the issue of gay marriage on the country by judicial activists sympathetic with the gay agenda — is an attempted gang rape of our culture. It is an attempt to sodomize our society."

With views like these, Creech will fit right in among the radicals with which the Cruz campaign has aligned itself.

Glenn Beck Says John Kasich Is A 'Son Of A Bitch' Who Is Going To 'Possibly Destroy The Republic'

On Monday, Glenn Beck was positively giddy over his realization that everything he has done for the last decade has been orchestrated by God for the purpose of preparing his audience to save this nation by electing Ted Cruz as president.

God's plan for saving America, Beck explained, hinged upon Donald Trump winning the Republican primaries in Florida and Ohio and thereby driving both Marco Rubio and John Kasich out of the race, setting up a showdown between Cruz and Trump, at which point "Cruz turbos and the republic is saved."

Unfortunately for Beck, last night didn't quite turn out the way he had anticipated, with Kasich winning in his native Ohio and vowing to stay in the race until the Republican convention. So while Beck heaped praised upon Rubio for dropping out after losing to Trump in Florida, saying that he delivered a "landmark" concession speech that will go down in history, he declared that Kasich will conversely go down in history as the man who "possibly destroyed the republic."

After co-host Pat Gray mocked Kasich on the radio program today for being "delusional" for staying in the race when it is mathematically impossible for him to actually win enough delegates in the remaining primaries to secure the GOP nomination, Beck stated that "this guy is going to be remembered as a guy who possibly destroyed the republic."

"It will be his arrogance," Beck said, "he will go down in history as the guy who possibly destroyed the republic ... We're looking at a delusional guy."

"Excuse my language," Beck said later in the broadcast, "but you son of a bitch, the republic is at stake. This is not like a normal race. The republic is at stake!"

Glenn Beck And Jerry Boykin Say Electing Trump Or Clinton Would Be National Suicide

On Monday's television show, Glenn Beck aired an interview that he conducted with the Family Research Council's Jerry Boykin when the two men were in Ohio last weekend campaigning for Ted Cruz. During the discussion, the two agreed that the election of either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton would mean that America has reached rock bottom and decided to commit national suicide.

After Beck complained that Christians are being mocked for believing, as he does, that Ted Cruz has been raised up by God for this moment, he and Boykin worried that America has not yet reached the point where it is willing to humble itself and ask God to save this nation.

"I'm a recovering alcoholic," Beck said. "There was a time when I hit my bottom and I had to decide whether I was going to repeat my mother's life, who committed suicide, or if I was going to live. My mother's bottom was suicide. Some people don't have a bottom. If we vote for Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump, is our bottom suicide?"

"If we go down that road," Boykin replied, "I don't think the republic will survive."

Radical Right-Wing Activist Janet Porter Loses Her Bid For Office In Ohio

After years of failing to get the Ohio legislature to pass a radical piece of anti-abortion legislation that she had drafted, long-time Religious Right activist Janet Porter announced back in December that she was running for a seat in the Ohio state senate. 

Since 2011, Porter had been pressuring the Ohio legislature to pass the "Heartbeat Bill," which would outlaw abortion at the moment a fetal heartbeat can be detected, without success. Finally, after years of frustration, Porter decided to take matters into her own hands by launching a primary challenge to Republican state senator Larry Obhof.

Thanks to her many years of radical right-wing activism, Porter was able to rack up endorsements from the likes of James Dobson, Mat Staver, Larry Pratt, Mike Huckabee, Phyllis Schlafly, Jerry Boykin, Gordon Klingenschmitt and Troy Newman. At one point, Porter even campaigned on the fact that she was one of the "most-watched" right-wing activists on this very blog: 

Janet is the Left-Wing’s second “most-watched” woman in America, according to “Right Wing Watch," a group dedicated to “monitoring and exposing the activities of the right-wing movement.” The enemies of life and liberty are watching, and they only watch those whom they consider to be a threat. The highest ranking woman is former congresswoman and presidential candidate, Michele Bachmann with 588 “reports,” Janet at 448, and Governor Sarah Palin with 376.

She even wore this fact as a badge of honor in a campaign ad:

Over the weekend, Porter asked her supporters to engage in three days of prayer and fasting ahead of last night's Ohio primary, but it looks like it didn't do much good, as she was soundly defeated by the incumbent:

God Has Been Preparing And Sanctifying Glenn Beck's Audience To Save America

On his television program last night, Glenn Beck again shared his belief that everything that he has done for the last decade has been part of God's master plan to use Beck's audience to save America by electing Ted Cruz as president.

Beck said that all the warnings that he has issued over the years "sounded crazy" to him too, but he knew that he had to deliver them because they came directly from God.

"Because He saved me and because I know that I could never repay Him back for that," Beck said, "I made a promise to Him: I will do what You want me to do, I will say what You want me to say, I will go where You want me to go. And so I have and He put a warning message on my heart."

Beck said that his various Restoring Honor, Restoring Courage and Restoring Love events were all things that he didn't understand and didn't want to do, but now realizes were all part of "His genius."

"I have said for a long time this is going to be the audience that saves the republic," he said. "It is clear this was preparation and sanctification."

Todd Starnes Blames Obama For The Violence At Donald Trump Rallies

Yesterday, Fox News pundit Todd Starnes posted a video version of his most recent column, in which he blamed President Obama for the violence and protests that have been breaking out at Donald Trump rallies.

"The person responsible for fomenting political unrest is not Donald Trump," Starnes said, "It's President Obama. For the past seven and a half years, this man has been stoking division and discord. You want to talk about creating controversy? Fine. Let's talk about Baltimore and Ferguson, Missouri, and Trayvon Martin. President Obama is the one who told his followers if they bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun. That's what he said."

After dismissing the concerns that the "establishment overlords like Mitt Romney and the uppity-ups at the National Review" have about Trump, Starnes declared that "the folks who pay the bills in this country are fed up. We're tired of being called racists and homophobic and xenophobic. The Silent Majority is mad as hell and we're not going to take it anymore."

Ted Cruz Is 'Thrilled To Announce' The Endorsement Of Linda Harvey

Earlier this year, we reported that a handful of right-wing activists in Ohio, including anti-gay activist Linda Harvey of Mission America, had issued a press release announcing their support for Ted Cruz but that these endorsements had not been officially promoted or announced by the Cruz campaign.

That changed yesterday when the Cruz campaign "announced the endorsements of more than 30 key Ohio leaders, including clergy, elected officials, and activists," including three of the activists we highlighted in our original post: Harvey, Phil Burress of Citizens for Community Values Action and Molly Smith of Cleveland Right to Life.

“I am thrilled to announce such outstanding endorsements from Ohio leaders,” said Cruz. “These are some of Ohio’s top conservative leaders and they add to our incredible list of courageous conservatives from all across the Buckeye State.”

In honor of the Cruz campaign's announcement, we decided to republish our earlier post in order to remind everyone just whom Cruz is embracing: 

Perhaps Harvey thinks that Cruz will be the president she has longed for who will issue “an Emancipation Proclamation … to free America from the tyranny of sodomy.”

Harvey, who is boycotting so many pro-LGBT businesses that she complains she is running out of places to shop, has just this year:

Harvey has also advised parents not to let gay doctors or nurses treat their children, even when they’re hospitalized, and has insisted that “there is no proof that there’s ever anything like a gay, lesbian or bisexual or transgendered child, or teen or human.”

Burress and Smith also have anti-gay records that allow them to fit right in with their fellow Cruz supporters. Burress, whose Citizens for Community Values is the Ohio state affiliate of the Family Research Council, was an influential player in the passage of waves of anti-gay-marriage legislation in the 1990s and early 2000s, although his true passion is fighting against pornography. Smith, the head of Cleveland Right to Life and a leader of the fetal personhood group Personhood Alliance, has clashed with the National Right to Life Committee over her anti-gay activism.

Both Burress and Smith have fought to stop the Republican Party from becoming too friendly to gay people, attacking Ohio Sen. Rob Portman when he came out in favor of marriage equality. Burress, who called Portman “a very troubled man,” urged the senator to put his gay son into ex-gay therapy and later vowed to run a primary challenger against him.

Glenn Beck: For Ten Years, God Has Been Preparing My Audience To Save America By Electing Ted Cruz

On his radio program this morning, Glenn Beck revealed an epiphany that he had over the weekend when he realized that everything he has done over the last decade has been orchestrated by God for the purpose of saving this nation by electing Ted Cruz as president.

As Beck explained, the various Restoring Honor, Restoring Courage and Restoring Love events that he has hosted over the years were things that he didn't even want to do but did anyway because he was being compelled by God to do so. Though he didn't understand the purpose of any of the events at the time, Beck has now realized that they were all part of God's master plan to prepare Beck's audience to save America.

Beck reached this conclusion after seeing the protests surrounding Donald Trump's campaign rallies over the weekend, which he said is finally showing America that both Trump and the protesters will tear this nation apart and that Cruz will be this nation's only hope for survival.

Once Marco Rubio and John Kasich drop out when they fail to win their respective home states in this week's Republican primaries, Beck said that Republicans will realize that they have to either back Trump or Cruz and when that happens, "Cruz turbos and the republic is saved."

Beck marveled at how God has so perfectly orchestrated everything for this moment.

"You think we're that genius to be able to put that together?" he said. "You think we had this master strategy that put that together? When I was in Ohio this weekend and that dawned on me, I'm like, 'Holy cow!' I've been wondering what it was for. It's for this moment. Honor. Courage. Love. Honor, courage, love. It was for this moment because this is the audience that is going to save the republic."

"I am filled with the spirit, I am filled with the truth on this one," Beck continued. "This is the moment this audience will save the republic ... Everything I have talked about for almost a decade and a half is all coming into play this summer and that tells me that God has had a master plan the whole time."

David Barton Claims That 'Biblical Teachings' Have Reduced Violent Crime In Las Vegas By 75 Percent

Last month, right-wing psuedo-historian David Barton appeared on "The Patriot and The Preacher" radio program, where he claimed that "biblical teachings" were responsible for a 75 percent reduction in violent crime in the city of Las Vegas, Nevada.

Barton said that he was "a math and science guy" before God "providentially" led him into the study of American history, prompting him to reiterate his claim that it was in this capacity that he discovered that the removal of mandatory prayer from public schools was responsible for a steep decline in academic achievement. For example, Barton believes that the end of school-sponsored prayer led to a significant drop in SAT scores.

Barton claimed that he could prove this via "double causation," which he later called "double correlation," by showing that just as removing organized prayer from public schools leads to lower test scores, adding the "God factor" to schools increases test scores.

"There appears to be a God factor in this thing," he said, "and we were able to document actually 47 categories of government-kept statistics that plummeted at that point in time when we told God to take a hike. Apparently He did and it hasn't worked out too well for us since then. But when God is reintroduced back into policy, for instance, in Las Vegas, the churches there worked with the police department to teach morals in the city, the violent crime rate has gone down 75 percent in Las Vegas by the reintroduction of biblical teachings back in the city through the police department and the churches."

As usual, it is almost impossible to determine where Barton is getting this information since he never bothers to cite any sources, but our best guess is that he is referring to a recent documentary called "Vegas Vikings" about a community outreach effort that claims to have reduced the crime rate by 75 percent in one Las Vegas neighborhood.

Edit Memo: Not Just the Supreme Court: Republicans’ Blockade of Judicial Nominees Started Long Before SCOTUS Vacancy

To: Interested Parties
From: Paul Gordon, Senior Legislative Counsel, People For the American Way
Date: March 14, 2016
Re: Not Just the Supreme Court: Republicans’ Blockade of Judicial Nominees Started Long Before SCOTUS Vacancy

Senate Republicans’ vow to block anyone nominated for the Supreme Court by President Obama, no matter who it may be, has rightly gotten a lot of headlines. Their refusal to even consider a president’s Supreme Court nominee is unprecedented. Unfortunately, this campaign of obstruction is just latest extension of their obstinate refusal to responsibly fulfill the constitutional duty of considering the president’s nominees across all levels of the federal judiciary. Judiciary Committee chairman Chuck Grassley is leading the party’s strategy to keep vacancies open for as long as possible on our nation’s federal circuit and district courts.

This isn’t the first time that Grassley has led his party in seeking to block Obama from filling important judicial vacancies, regardless of who he might nominate. In 2013, Grassley sought to eliminate three vacant judgeships from the critically important 11-member DC Circuit Court of Appeals, rather than allow Obama to fill any of them. This was two months before the president had even nominated anyone for these seats. When his eventual nominees appeared before the Judiciary Committee, Republican members followed the lead of then-Ranking Member Grassley in opposing them regardless of their legal acumen, their professional experience, or their judicial temperament. Ted Cruz, for instance, made clear to Patricia Millett that he would join Grassley’s effort to block her confirmation “irrespective of your very fine professional qualifications.” During this high-profile partisan confrontation that Grassley created over the nation’s second most powerful court, he supported his obviously political position with principled-sounding claims that were repeatedly shown upon investigation to be without merit.

Since the GOP took control of the Senate, he has used his position as chairman of the Judiciary Committee to drastically slow down the consideration of President Obama’s judicial nominees. Perhaps the most notorious example is the nomination of L. Felipe Restrepo of Pennsylvania to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. With the tacit cooperation of home state senator (and fellow Republican) Pat Toomey, Grassley did not even hold a confirmation hearing until seven months after Restrepo’s nomination, even though Toomey claimed to support the nomination and Restrepo had already been thoroughly fully vetted for a district judgeship just two years earlier. He was approved unanimously by the Judiciary Committee last July, but then languished on the Senate floor for half a year until Republicans finally allowed a confirmation vote in January. The delay had nothing to do with Restrepo’s qualifications: When he was finally confirmed, it was with overwhelming bipartisan support, with only six senators voting against him.

The current slowdown is a sharp departure from the norm, even considering other times when the White House and Senate are controlled by different parties. For instance, at this point in George W. Bush’s last two years, the Democratic-controlled Senate had confirmed 40 circuit and district court nominees. In contrast, the GOP-controlled Senate in President Obama’s last two years has only confirmed 16 judges so far. 2015 saw only 11 confirmations, the fewest since 1960, more than half a century ago, a time when there were hundreds fewer judgeships to fill than today.

March 9 saw a typical example of the Grassley model on the Senate floor, where he or one of his GOP colleagues on the Judiciary Committee actively – and needlessly – block votes on long-delayed, fully-vetted consensus nominees. Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski made a simple request of her colleagues: to hold a confirmation vote on two consensus district court nominees from Maryland and Tennessee. Paula Xinis has been awaiting a floor vote since she was approved by the Judiciary Committee by unanimous voice vote on September 17, nearly half a year ago. Tennessee’s Waverly Crenshaw has been waiting even longer: the committee advanced him – also by unanimous voice vote – way back on July 9. Each nominee has the support of their home state senators, two Democrats and two Republicans. Yet Sen. Mikulski’s request for a vote was blocked by Republican Judiciary Committee member John Cornyn of Texas, so individuals and businesses in Maryland and Tennessee are denied fully functioning federal courts.

In response to this floor action (or, more properly, floor inaction), the Judiciary Committee’s Ranking Democrat, Sen. Patrick Leahy, noted the connection to the constitutional crisis over the current Supreme Court vacancy: “While Republicans refuse to even consider the next Supreme Court nominee, I would think they would at least allow consensus lower court nominees to be confirmed.” Unfortunately, the GOP’s obstructionism reaches every level of the federal judiciary.

The American system of justice, where everyone can be assured of their fair day in court when their rights are violated, depends on having enough judges to hear those cases. But since Republicans took over the Senate, the number of circuit and district vacancies has nearly doubled (from 40 to 73), and the number of those vacancies officially designated by the Administrative Office of U.S. Courts as “judicial emergencies” has skyrocketed from 12 to 32.

So the refusal of the Senate GOP to do their job on judicial nominations is not new; it’s been their deliberate policy toward the entire federal court system. What’s new is the extension of that policy to the radical and irresponsible position that the Senate majority can refuse to perform its constitutional responsibility to give the president’s nominee fair consideration As chairman of the Judiciary Committee and architect of the party’s approach to judiciary matters, Chuck Grassley bears key responsibility for the harm his party is doing to the federal judiciary.

The damage is particularly bad when the vacancies occur at the circuit court level. Unlike district courts, circuit courts issue decisions that bind every federal court within their region. And since the Supreme Court takes so few cases each year, it is usually the circuit courts that have the last word on how the Constitution or federal laws will be interpreted in the regions they cover.

Fortunately, President Obama has nominated a number of highly qualified and respected individuals to serve on circuit courts around the country. When Democrats controlled the Senate, then-Chairman Patrick Leahy worked cooperatively with Republican home state senators to process circuit court nominees in a timely manner, such as when Iowan Jane Kelly was given a committee hearing less than a month after being nominated. Now that Grassley is chairman, it is imperative that he, too, work with home-state senators and fellow committee members to ensure that President Obama’s circuit court nominees have open hearings and timely committee votes. Indeed, several of these nominees could already have had their hearings by now.

Donald K. Schott of Wisconsin for the 7th Circuit (Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin): Nominated on January 12 (more than two months ago), Schott would fill a seat that has been empty for more than six years, the oldest circuit vacancy in the nation. He was evaluated and found qualified by the state’s bipartisan six-member Federal Nominating Commission, three appointed by Sen. Ron Johnson and three appointed by Sen. Tammy Baldwin. A longtime partner at a major national firm, Schott has extensive litigation experience at both the state and federal levels, and at both the trial and appellate levels. He has regularly been recognized as one of the best lawyers in the state. He also has strong support in the Wisconsin academic legal community.

Justice Myra Selby of Indiana for the 7th Circuit (covering Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin): Justice Selby was nominated on January 12 (more than two months ago). She had developed expertise in health care issues as a private practitioner and as a high-ranking state government official when she was appointed to the Indiana Supreme Court in the 1990s, becoming both the first woman and the first African American to serve on that court. Knowing the enormous impact that courts have on the lives of everyday Americans, Justice Selby led efforts to increase the state high court's accessibility to the Indiana public through public education and outreach. Since retiring from the state court, she has had a successful practice as a partner in the Indianapolis branch of a major law firm, while also chairing a state commission that studies ways to increase racial and gender fairness in the legal system. Upon confirmation to the Seventh Circuit, she would become the first African American from Indiana and the first woman from Indiana to serve on that court.

Jennifer Klemetsrud Puhl of North Dakota for the 8th Circuit (covering Arkansas, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota): Nominated on January 28, Puhl has worked in the U.S. Attorney’s office in North Dakota since 2002, gaining substantial experience prosecuting a variety of criminal matters. Her expertise across different areas of the law has led to her being named to a number of leadership roles, including Computer Hacking and Intellectual Property Coordinator, National Security Cyber Specialist, Human Trafficking Coordinator, and Project Safe Childhood Coordinator. Puhl has played a major role in fighting human trafficking in North Dakota. Upon confirmation, Puhl would be the first woman ever to serve as a federal judge at any level in North Dakota, circuit or district. In addition, even though the 8th Circuit covers seven states, it has only had two women judges in its history.

Judge Abdul Kallon of Alabama for the 11th Circuit (covering Alabama, Florida, and Georgia): Judge Kallon was nominated on February 11. An immigrant from Sierra Leone, he began his legal career in Alabama, had extensive litigation experience, and became a partner in a major law firm based in Birmingham. His exemplary reputation in the legal community earned him the support of Alabama Sens. Jeff Sessions and Richard Shelby when President Obama nominated him as a district judge in 2009. The Senate confirmed him unanimously for that position, and he has continued to earn the respect of the Alabama legal community. Upon confirmation, Kallon would become the first African American from Alabama to serve on the 11th Circuit (or on its predecessor court, the 5th Circuit, which used to include Alabama). The judgeship he would fill has been vacant since 2013 and has been formally designated a judicial emergency.

Judge Lucy Haeran Koh of California for the 9th Circuit (covering Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Washington): Koh was nominated on February 25 and would bring a wide range of professional experience to the bench. She spent several years at the Department of Justice, earning awards and recognition for her work as a prosecutor. She then moved to private practice and became a litigator and partner at a major law firm. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger then appointed her as a state judge in 2008. Her success at all these endeavors led President Obama to nominate her to become a federal district judge, and the Senate confirmed her unanimously in 2010. Upon confirmation to the 9th Circuit, Judge Koh would be only the second Asian American woman ever to serve on a federal circuit court. The vacancy she would fill has been formally designated a judicial emergency.

Nominations like these are important, but they don’t get the national attention that Supreme Court vacancies do. What’s important to note, however, is that when Chuck Grassley and his fellow Republicans claim some lofty-sounding principle to defend their planned and unprecedented Supreme Court blockade, they don’t have clean hands. Instead of doing their jobs of efficiently vetting and voting on judicial nominees in a timely manner, they’ve been stalling them at all levels.

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Theodore Shoebat: 'There Is A Satanic Conspiracy To Stop Trump'

On Friday night, Donald Trump-loving militant anti-gay activist Theodore Shoebat posted a video responding to the cancellation of a Trump campaign rally in Chicago amid scuffles and protests, declaring that opposition to Trump is satanic and blasting Religious Right activists who oppose Trump for having sided with the "Muslims" and "sodomites" who oppose the GOP frontrunner.

"Listen up, evangelicals," he said. "You're all supposed to be for family values and all that and you're saying, 'Oh, we've got to go against Donald Trump,' but you're in agreement, whether you know it or not, you are in agreement with the Muslims, you are in agreement with the dangerous La Raza crowd, you are in agreement with the homosexual elites, you're in agreement with all of these people, you are part of the same crowd in this situation. You're part of the same damn crowd."

Shoebat singled out Trump (and Theodore Shoebat) critic Michael Brown for being in agreement with "sodomites" and "La Raza terrorists," saying the entire effort to stop Trump from winning the Republican nomination is a satanic conspiracy.

"The evangelicals who are going against Donald Trump are part of a satanic conspiracy," he stated. "When you have sodomites, Black Muslims and Muslims, and La Raza supremacists, when you've got white homosexual elites and socialists like the Bernie Sanders crowd, when you've got all these guys getting together to go against one man, the Devil is working something. This is a satanic conspiracy to stop Trump."

Glenn Beck Says The NRA Board Supports Grover Norquist Because He 'Cried At A Hearing'

Glenn Beck continues to promote his campaign to get right-wing anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist removed from the board of the National Rifle Association on the grounds that Norquist is a front man for the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamic radicals, rolling out a new effort today aimed at mobilizing his listeners who are NRA members to vote to recall Norquist.

As Beck explained on his radio program today, Norquist is a "shill" for the Muslim Brotherhood and "a very shifty man" who has greatly endangered this nation by associating with "really bad people" and vouching for known "terrorists," referring to the bogus claim that Norquist is a secret agent working for the Islamist group.

Norquist is "a really bad mole," Beck said, and therefore it is vitally important that he be removed from the NRA board via this recall effort.

For its part, the NRA is urging members not to remove Norquist from the board, saying that the allegations against him are without "factual support":

... the NRA itself and a "Who's Who" of national conservative leaders have rallied Norquist's defense, saying the allegations are nonsense ... The NRA has examined all the criticisms of Norquist and found them baseless and strongly urged all NRA members to vote "no" on the recall.

"Given the staleness of all allegations [and] the lack of factual support," concluded a special NRA panel, "we disagree with the Petitioner in this case and recommend a NO vote."

Of course, Beck entirely dismissed the NRA's position by asserting that the board was moved to sympathy simply because Norquist wept during an inquiry into the allegations against him, speculating that other board members are afraid that they too will be targeted for removal if the effort against Norquist is successful.

"The board made their recommendation on a couple of things," Beck said. "Grover Norquist cried at the hearing and said, 'Gee, I just don't know why they're coming after me and my family.' And the board looked at him and, I believe, said, 'There by the grace of God go I, it's gonna be me; they come after him then they're going to come after me for something else and anybody can be thrown off the board and it'll be a witch hunt.' That's not true. Grover Norquist is in a special category."

Glenn Beck: A Vote For Trump Or Clinton Carries 'A Very Heavy Eternal Price'

Glenn Beck welcomed a live audience onto his television program last night for a discussion about the election and the conversation eventually turned to whether or not people would be willing to support Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton in the general election, which Beck said he could not do because such a vote would carry "a very heavy eternal price."

Beck's audience was nearly unanimous in its opposition to Trump in the Republican primary, but many seemed willing to vote for him over Clinton ... but not Beck.

"I've made a promise to myself before this whole process started," he said, "that I wouldn't buy into the 'lesser of two evils,' that I would pay attention to the last word in that sentence: evil."

As Beck explained, "the Republic is at stake" with this election because both Trump and Clinton are threats to our most basic constitutional rights.

Since both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were "God-inspired," Beck said, the government was created for the purpose of protecting our God-given rights, which is why he refuses to play a role in squandering those rights by voting for either Trump or Clinton.

"If we are the generation that loses those rights, we're going to pay a heavy price," he said, "a very heavy eternal price ... I'm not going to face my maker if I drop dead and have Him go, 'By the way, remember those crazy rights? You were alive then, weren't you? What did you do? Who did you vote for?'"

"I can't in all good conscience say, 'Well, because I thought Donald Trump would protect them,'" he continued, "or, 'I really thought Hillary Clinton would protect them.' I know neither of them will and I don't think the Lord is the kind of guy who says, "Well, we'll go a little evil.'"

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