Dinesh D’Souza came to CPAC today to promote his new movie, “America,” and explain how President Obama is implementing an anti-American, anti-capitalist agenda.
D’Souza told the conservative conference that Obama believes “the free market system is based on theft” and seemed to be under the impression that Obama came up with the entire system of taxation: “Think about this, it’s almost like here you are at home, you’re watching TV, and a bunch of government guys show up at your door and they start taking your furniture and taking your car and you’re like, ‘What are you doing?’ They’re like, ‘You know your paycheck that you got last month? You didn’t earn that, you stole it, it doesn’t really belong to you.’ This is what, in a sense, we are up against.”
In an interview on VCY America's Crosstalk yesterday, Liberty Counsel chairman Mat Staver criticized President Obama for being “very pro-homosexual” and “pro-Muslim,” and “doing more harm to our foundational, fundamental values than any president in American history.”
Asked by host Jim Schneider about the “really troubling” decision to invite the Dalai Lama to give an opening prayer at the Senate yesterday, Staver responded that the Dalai Lama's presence in the Senate and the choice of Rajiv Shah, a Hindu USAID official, to deliver an address at the National Prayer breakfast showed the president’s “insensitivity to Christianity.”
Staver criticized new IRS rules that allow legally married same-sex couples to jointly file federal tax returns and "pro-Muslim" EEOC guidelines for allowing religious dress in the workplace, which is ironic since Staver purports to represent a "religious liberty" group.
Schneider: We’ve received from the IRS, they issued a video clip that they posted on YouTube giving instructions to those that are so-called same-sex marriage partners, telling them that if they’re marriage took place in a state or country that recognizes so-called same-sex marriage, that they may claim married filing jointly on their return. The IRS is just going full-bore on this regard.
Staver: Well, it is the IRS going full bore. This is the administration focusing on things that are unnecessary and hurtful, rather than focusing on the job that they’re supposed to do.
This is the IRS that has been targeting conservative organizations and Tea Party groups, pro-Israel and pro-family organizations. This is the IRS that refuses to present testimony before Congress. And this is the IRS that now has the proposed rules to silence 501(c)4 organizations, which are going to primarily hurt conservative organizations.
And now, instead of focusing on what they should do, they’re promoting the so-called lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and whatever else of the alphabet you want to add to that, agenda. This is a very pro-homosexual administration, from President Obama right down to all the people that work underneath him. Not only here in America, but they’re pushing this agenda around the world as well. It is a very damaging agenda. This president is doing more harm to our foundational, fundamental values than any president in American history.
Schneider: Two more issues that have happened today, Matt. Today, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the EEOC, issued a very comprehensive statement on religious garb and grooming in the workplace, rights and responsibilities. What’s behind this?
Staver: Well, what’s behind it, obviously, is the president’s pro-Muslim position. And obviously, when you look at the examples, there are examples for all different kinds of religions, and particularly Muslim religions, but I really don’t see much mention at all of Christianity. This is as though Christianity doesn’t exist.
They then moved on to the Dalai Lama’s visit and the Hindu speaker at the National Prayer Breakfast, which Staver said illustrated the president’s “insensitivity to Christianity.”
Schneider: CNSNews.com is reporting that this very morning, the Dalai Lama delivered the opening prayer at the United States Senate, encouraging prayer to Buddha and all other gods. Just really troubling. We’re not a country that’s founded on ‘all other gods,’ are we?
Staver: No, and in fact if you go back to the National Prayer Breakfast just a few weeks ago in Washington, DC, after Ben Carson spoke at the National Prayer Breakfast a year ago, President Obama for six months or so threatened to not return. And unfortunately, some of the leaders, not wanting to have the first president of the Unites States not attend, ultimately caved in to his pressure, and he’s the one, we are told, that selected the person to speak. The person to speak, now, for the very first time in the National Prayer Breakfast history was not a Christian, but I believe was Hindu, and didn’t mention anything about Christianity or God. This was someone who was picked by Obama, and under those circumstances, Obama would have now agreed to come. I would have said, then go ahead and be the first president. It would certainly show some of your insensitivity to Christianity that you’ve been showing ever since you were inaugurated.
Speaking at CPAC, today, Ralph Reed defended Louisiana’s constitutionally dubious voucher program -- which the Department of Justice warned was resegregating schools -- by comparing President Obama to notorious segregationist George Wallace.
The Faith and Freedom Coalition head told CPAC today that Obama was harming black children and lifted from the spiritual “Go Down, Moses,” to tell Obama: “Let those children go!”
Reed also chastised “left-wing bullies” for defeating Arizona’s right-to-discriminate bill and completely misrepresented the Little Sisters of the Poor case.
Reed, who has been embroiled in an ethics scandal over conning Native American casinos, also demanded that Attorney General Eric Holder face impeachment for his pro-marriage equality stance.
In an appearance at CPAC today, Oliver North denounced President Obama for treating military service members like “laboratory rats in some radical social experiment” and “apologizing” for America. North insisted that the US “has nothing ever to apologize for, not once” in its entire history.
Later, North said that the GOP must remain firm in working to ban marriage equality and abortion rights just as abolitionists fought to end slavery, warning that “if we as conservatives cease to be a place where people of faith and those who believe in strong moral values can come, we will cease to be a political force in America.”
Speaking with Family Research Council president Tony Perkins on Washington Watch yesterday, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) explained that the recently unveiled Pentagon budget “has the effect of killing our young Americans in combat.”
He said President Obama is to blame for spending cuts because he probably doesn’t want to have a military anyway: “A real liberal in his heart doesn’t think you need a military anyway, I know people that would never admit that, but people I have served with here in the United States Senate, that’s the crisis we’re up against.”
A leading climate change denialist, Inhofe also took issue with spending on environmental projects.
“We really need global warming right now; we’re setting all kinds of records out in Oklahoma,” Inhofe joked, before arguing that federal funds “wasted on the global warming stuff” should have gone towards the military instead.
Perkins responded by arguing that President Obama and other Democrats “despise the military” because they support policies that have allowed gays and lesbians to serve openly.
“If you think back, the president set his sights on the military from the very beginning, pushing the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, which was the beginning of the end of the military,” Perkins said.
He then repeated the false claim that end of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is responsible for an increase in sexual assaults.
William Gheen of the anti-immigrant Americans For Legal Immigration PAC (ALIPAC) sent out an email yesterday announcing that he has “acquired a premium new domain to use in the fight against illegal immigration, illegal immigrants, and any form of amnesty for illegals.”
It turns out that the new website, illegalimmigration.com, is a sort of wiki, inviting users to discuss (although it appears not to edit) articles on diverse subjects including “illegal immigration,” “illegal immigrants,” “immigrants,” and “Obama and illegal immigration.”
Gheen has stocked the site with some initial articles, which bear his trademark spotty punctuation and anti-immigrant hysteria. We’ve collected some nuggets of wisdom from this new encyclopedia of Gheen’s mind.
Illegal immigration refers to a criminal act that is willfully committed by someone who enters into a nation of which they are not a citizen in violation of the laws of that land. While illegal immigration occurs in most countries, the biggest problems with illegal immigration are occurring in America and Europe where illegal immigrants from very poor countries are entering more developed nations in an effort to obtain more jobs, money, healthcare, education, and taxpayer benefits.
Many people consider illegal immigration to be a form of invasion and a form of theft because illegal immigrants come and take things such as jobs, taxpayer resources, and healthcare that are not theirs but belong to others.
Many American pundits have expressed the opinion that Barack Obama should be impeached for encouraging illegal immigration, illegal immigrants, and amnesty by decree!
Illegal immigrants are people just like the rest of us. They have feelings, emotions, they love, they hate, they make mistakes like we all do.
Unlike the vast majority of American citizens though, illegal immigrants have made a decision to break numerous important American laws. Illegal immigrants have put their own desires and well being ahead of the needs and desires of American citizens.
Immigrants is a term that should be reserved for legal immigrants only!
Those that support the costly and deadly illegal immigrant invasion of America and amnesty for illegal aliens are constantly trying to refer to the invaders by the noble name of 'immigrant'.
The Dream Act is Orwellian language used to try to sell a form of amnesty for illegal immigrants and illegal aliens. The word Dream is used as a reference to Martin Luther King's "I have a dream" speech which in fact has no real relationship to the plight of illegal aliens.
The Dream Act is also a political lever designed to play on the sympathies of American citizens and lawmakers to get them to allow an amnesty for younger illegal aliens under 35 that claim they were brought into the United States as Children.
The problem with the American global media is that every major news network is now biased in favor of illegal immigrants and immigration reform amnesty after Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch joined with super liberal NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg to try to pass amnesty.
Anyone trying to get accurate news about illegal immigration has to learn to read between the lines and locate alternative news publications and agregate websites because the damages and deaths caused by illegal immigrants are censored on a regular basis.
National Journal’s Alex Seitz-Wald reported yesterday on the high visibility at CPAC of those who want Ben Carson to run for president. The Draft Ben Carson for President Committee has a booth in the exhibit area and the shuttle bus I rode between the suburban Maryland conference center and downtown D.C. was plastered with a large banner urging Carson to run.
Carson, an African American pediatric neurosurgeon, has had a fervent right-wing following since he used his appearance with President Obama at the 2013 National Prayer Breakfast to denounce political correctness and suggest that the Bible supports a flat tax. (He made the same case as CPAC last year.) Carson appeals to anti-government conservatives by calling to phase out government poverty assistance and let churches and other charities deal with the fallout. And he appeals to Religious Right activists by claiming there is a "war on God" in America and by denouncing homosexuality and opposing same-sex marriage. He has claimed that the IRS has targeted his family and associates and says the Obama administration is like the Gestapo and wants to shut down Fox News.
The National Journal quotes committee director Vernon Robinson saying that if Carson can draw just 17 percent of the black vote, “the Roosevelt Democratic coalition is destroyed” and it will be impossible for Democrats to win the White House.
Robinson makes the same case in a direct mail piece I received this week. The mailer itself unfolds into a Ben Carson poster, and includes letters from Robinson and from the group’s “national chairman” John Philip Sousa IV. “I am convinced that no 2016 Republican ticket can win without Ben Carson on it,” writes Robinson. “Only Ben Carson can get enough black votes to keep the Democrats from winning the White House.”
Sousa’s letter says Carson is the only candidate who can defeat Hillary Clinton, heal America and unite Americans. “Don’t just sit back and let the Republican establishment pick the next GOP nominee!” Sousa urges, taking direct aim at New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie:
Besides, do you really want a candidate for President who is just another big spending Republican like Christie? And, can you really trust Christie who was pro-abortion before he was pro-life to nominate pro-life judges to the U.S. Supreme Court?
The simple truth is that moderates like McCain and Christie are sure to lose, while conservatives like Ronald Reagan and Ben Carson are sure to win.
Seitz-Wald reports that the committee to draft Carson raised $2.83 million in its first six months of operation.
GOProud, a group for gay conservatives, was bounced from the American Conservative Union’s annual Conservative Political Action Conference in 2012 when a coalition of social conservatives pulled out in protest of the group’s participation. This year the group has been “welcomed” back – not in the sense of having a table or other visible presence, but in the sense of GOProud leaders being allowed to attend, according to some news reports, as guests of the ACU. GOProud co-founder Chris Barron criticized the group’s current leaders for touting the conditional return as a victory, saying they were letting themselves be used as “stooges” for anti-gay conservatives.
But even this mild and invisible welcome is too much for Tradition, Family, and Property, the far-right Catholic organization whose members sport bright scarlet capes. Walk by TFP’s table and someone will eagerly hand you a flyer explaining “Why GOProud Does Not Belong at CPAC.” GOProud is memorably portrayed as a rainbow-colored beaver, gnawing away at the social conservative leg of the conservative movement (the other two legs being fiscal and defense-oriented conservatives).
Why is GOProud a welcomed and official guest at CPAC, when it advocates the legalization of same-sex “marriage,” thus undermining the votes and dreams of millions of God-fearing Americans?
How can GOProud consider itself conservative when it directly opposes the work of social conservative activists and contributes to America’s moral ruin, through the weakening of the family – the first and fundamental building block of society?
TFP’s flyer says it protests against GOProud’s efforts to “cast itself as a bone fide member of the conservative movement.” TFP believes:
To be true to itself, the conservative movement must battle on all three conservative fronts (defense, fiscal, and social).
That individuals and organizations who subscribe to only one or two of the conservative movement’s three legs are still welcome to join the coalition, but should refrain from publicly opposing the rest of the movement’s efforts on the leg or legs they disagree on.
TFP says welcoming GOProud into the conservative movement would be like a communist or socialist organization seeking admittance to the conservative movement by claiming to be against abortion. As part of the evidence that TFP marshals to prove that GOProud is not conservative, it notes that the group’s website says it encourages “committed stable, relationships between two people, regardless of sexual orientation, that promote healthy families and create value within our society.” Mercy!
TFP does have some kind words for the ACU, applauding the decision to deny American Atheists a booth at CPAC. But that didn’t prevent American Atheists from distributing a CPAC flyer that says “Christianity’s influence on conservatism is pushing away almost 20 million voters – more than enough to swing an election.”
In his speech to CPAC today, Donald Trump attacked advocates of immigration reform, including on-and-off supporter Marco Rubio, arguing that undocumented immigrants shouldn’t be given a pathway to citizenship because he thinks they won’t vote Republican.
The faux-presidential candidate said that immigration will actually destroy America: “Immigration, we’re either a country or we’re not, we either have borders or we don’t; you have a border, you have a country and if you don’t have a border, what are we just a nothing? A nothing.”
Trump added that he understands why many people at CPAC are “so conservative you don’t even want to be a Republican.”
“If you let the 11 million — which will grow to 30 million — people in, I don’t care who stands up, whether it’s Marco Rubio and talks about ‘let everybody in,’ you won’t get one vote, every one of those votes goes to the Democrats,” Trump said. “Of those 11 million potential voters, which will go to 30 million in the not too long future, you will not get any of those votes no matter what you do, no matter how nice you are, no matter how soft you are, no matter how many times you say ‘rip down the fence and let everybody in,’ you’re not going to get the votes.”
“So with immigration, you better be smart and you better be tough and they’re taking your jobs and you better be careful.”
The Institute For Research & Education on Human Rights points out today that the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) is once again welcoming a white nationalist group, even while shunning organizations that represent LGBT and atheist conservatives.
IREHR reports that ProEnglish is sponsoring a booth at this week’s CPAC, which costs exhibitors $4,000 in exchange for official recognition and promotion from conference organizers. ProEnglish is an anti-immigrant “English only” group led by Bob Vandervoort, who previously headed a white nationalist group and who has fretted about the “cultural and racial dispossession of the West’s historic people” and the coming of a “post-Western America.” Vandervoort has also written about supposed “racial differences” in “intelligence and temperament.”
ProEnglish is part of the network of anti-immigrant groups connected to white nationalist John Tanton. The Center for New Community explains:
ProEnglish was established in 1994 with the oversight of its founding chairman, the white nationalist John Tanton. In fact, it is Tanton’s second English language interest group, formed after he left the first, U.S. English, after a racially charged memo that surfaced in 1988.
While Vandervoort’s group was apparently not too controversial for the conference, two other groups were. Late last month, the American Conservative Union, which organizes CPAC, abruptly canceled the exhibition booth of the group American Atheists after an outcry from Religious Right groups. Family Research Council President Tony Perkins said of the planned inclusion of the atheist group, "Does the American Conservative Union really think the liberties and values they seek to preserve can be maintained when they partner with individuals and organizations that are undermining the understanding that our liberties come from God? Thomas Jefferson warned against such nonsense."
CPAC’s organizers also prevented the gay conservative group GOPround from sponsoring a booth, although they magnanimously allowed GOProud’s leaders to “attend as guests,” causing a cofounder of the group to resign.
Similar dramas have played out in each of the last few years. In 2012, CPAC banned GOProud but allowed two white nationalists, including Vandervoort, to appear on an anti-multiculturalism panel. Last year, GOProud was banned once again but ProEnglish was allowed to host a booth.
Interestingly, one of CPAC’s “participating sponsors” this year is Facebook, which has been working to push GOP toward immigration reform. We wonder how they feel about sponsoring a conference that welcomes the participation of an anti-immigrant white nationalist group?
Ryan Hurst is the membership services program coordinator for affiliate People For the American Way Foundation’s Young Elected Officials Network.
Last week, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer vetoed SB 1062, a bill that would have made it legal for businesses and employers to discriminate against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people if it was due to a “deeply held religious belief.” Many Arizonans and national leaders on both sides of the aisle vehemently opposed it, including members of affiliate People For the American Way Foundation’s Young Elected Officials (YEO) Network. US Representative Kyrsten Sinema (AZ-09) and Arizona State Senate Democratic Leader Anna Tovar spoke out on MSNBC. Tovar also said in a statement:
SB 1062 permits discrimination under the guise of religious freedom. With the express consent of Republicans in this legislature, many Arizonans will find themselves members of a separate and unequal class under this law because of their sexual orientation.
Supporters of SB 1062 and legislation like it have argued that it is necessary to protect the “right” of business owners to deny services to LGBT Americans. Why does fighting this flawed assumption matter? Why would LGBT Americans want to patronize a business that is trying to discriminate against them?
It matters because our values define who we are as a people. Do we want to be an America that permits discrimination because we disagree with someone? An America that legislates away the dignity of a group of our fellow citizens? The desire to have and feel dignity is something that reaches into our very core. It is why African American students refused to get up from lunch counters during the civil rights movement. Though the circumstances behind those heroic acts were different, at least one of the core motivating factors is the same – the desire to have dignity and be valued as a human being.
We as a nation decided to set precedent as a result of the civil rights movement, that we would not allow ourselves to be defined by hate and ignorance, and that discrimination based on race, gender, disability, national origin, and religion would not be tolerated. Why would we hold love to a different standard? Like religion, it is deeply personal and central to who we are, and our freedom regarding that area of our lives is recognized as basic to the very concept of liberty. And we can no more change who we love than change our race, sex, or national origin.
Unfortunately Arizona was not alone in proposing a bill that would allow businesses to deny services to LGBT Americans. In all, 12 states had similar bills simultaneously working their way through their state legislatures. In the fallout from SB 1062, most of these states quietly killed these bills with little fanfare. But a few states like Idaho, Mississippi, and South Dakota are still considering similar legislation, and Oregon is even considering a ballot initiative.
It is time for us as a country to be bold and unapologetic about our rejection of discrimination. It is important for us to have conversations about why our brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, and neighbors and friends deserve dignity and equality. We must not be afraid to speak out in opposition to these bills if they are introduced in our state, and we must exercise our right to vote by removing elected officials from office that choose to support legislation that diminishes the dignity of others.
CPAC wouldn’t be complete without unceasing, perpetual praise of Ronald Reagan, and a great example of that today was how Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) managed to fit in as many mentions of Ronald Reagan as he possibly could during his closing remarks in a panel on conservative approaches to income inequality.
Scalise, who chairs the right-wing House Republican Study Committee, said that Republicans should model themselves on Reagan since he made America great, “brought down the Soviet Union” and was simply the best ever.
Reagan’s supreme Americanness, Scalise explained, caused the left to “revile” him “because of how he transformed this country in such a great way.”
Scalise added that unlike Reagan, President Obama “apologizes for American exceptionalism” while Secretary of State John Kerry is “drinking merlot and singing let’s all be friends.”
Chris Christie told CPAC attendees today that Republican “intolerance on social issues” is nothing but a myth. He insisted that Republicans are the truly tolerant party because they have allowed pro-choice politicians such as Condoleezza Rice and Tom Ridge to address their nominating conventions.
“Tell me, sir, the last pro-life Democrat who was allowed to speak at a Democratic convention – and by the way, don’t strain yourself because there’s never been one,” Christie continued. “They’re the party of intolerance, not us.”
Even if we accept Christie’s definition of “tolerance,” his claim is still false: the 2012 and 2008 Democratic conventions included speakers who opposed abortion rights, while 2008 GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin refused to share the stage with pro-choice Republicans.
In a speech today to Breitbart News’ alternative CPAC conference today, Eagle Forum founder Phyllis Schlafly reminisced about her early work pushing immigration restrictions, boasting that she was active in promoting the 1952 McCarran-Walter Act as member of Daughters of the American Revolution.
“The DAR at that time was a strong, pro-American organization,” she said.
We aren’t sure how Schlafly thinks that DAR has become less “pro-American” in the past 60 years. But we will note one way in which the organization has changed dramatically: while by 1952, the DAR had reversed its 1939 decision to ban African-American singer Marian Anderson from performing at its Constitution Hall, the group did not admit any black members until 1977.
Even after a congressional Republican report debunked the myth about a Benghazi “stand down” order, Family Research Council executive vice president Jerry Boykin told the alternative CPAC gathering today that the order did in fact take place and that the Obama administration is covering it up.
This is about American character. If we don’t get to the bottom of this, there are a lot of other things in America that don’t matter. If we let this go, if we do not doggedly hound elected representatives in this nation to get the answers out, to get to the bottom of this, then a lot of other things simply don’t matter because this is so fundamental.
In a video address to the alternative CPAC conferenced hosted by Breitbart News today, Center for Immigration Studies executive director Mark Krikorian claimed that Democrats support higher levels of immigration so that they can “import voters” and “create the conditions, such as increased poverty, increased lack of health insurance, that lead even non-immigrant voters to be more receptive to big government solutions” and to vote Democratic.