Governor Sued!Mar. 21, 2017
Family Foundation Announces Impending Legal Action
- McAuliffe Administration Notified Today -
RICHMOND–The Family Foundation of Virginia today announced that the administration of Governor Terry McAuliffe has been notified of impending legal action regarding violations of state law by the Department and Board of Health during the abortion center health and safety standards regulatory process.
“Over and over again during the nearly three-year process of amending the standards, the administration and Board violated the Administrative Process Act, the state law that provides the framework for regulatory action, the administrative code, and the Governor’s own Executive Order 17 regarding the regulatory review process,” said Victoria Cobb, President of The Family Foundation. “Regardless of one’s belief about the need for basic health and safety standards for abortion centers – or of any regulation for that matter – we all have to agree that a regulatory body cannot act outside the law when it wields extraordinary power over business, commerce and health care. We have the Administrative Process Act for that reason, to provide legal boundaries and process for unelected regulatory bodies, to provide transparency and public input throughout the regulatory process, and to be able to hold these agencies accountable when they go beyond the scope of their authority.”
Details of the administrative appeal were not released, but will be made available when the action is filed in Henrico Circuit Court within the next thirty days. The Family Foundation is paying the legal fees for one appellant in the appeal, Itzel Melendez, from Richmond. At a Richmond press conference today, Mrs. Melendez said, “In the past, I had occasion to visit an abortion center for the purpose of obtaining an abortion. I am participating in this case because I am concerned that without basic health and safety standards, abortion centers will operate in a way that could put my health at risk if I ever decided in the future that I needed their services. The standards that were in place were there to protect women like me from harm. Without them, I am no longer confident that my health would be protected.”
Cobb did reference one of the examples of where the pro-family organization believes the administration broke the law. She stated, “The agency violated the Administrative Process Act by amending entirely separate and unrelated regulatory sections that had not been included in the regulations’ “Proposed” phase. Several regulatory sections amended by the Board were not included in the “Proposed Regulation Agency Background Document” posted in townhall.gov, and these regulatory sections dealt with matters the public did not have an opportunity to comment on in accordance with the requirements of the law.
“In addition, several regulatory sections the Board amended were not even in the agency’s “Final Regulation Agency Background Document” posted in townhall.gov, let alone its “Proposed Regulation Agency Background Document”. The Code of Virginia requires that the notice requirement contain “(i) a statement of the date, time and place of the hearing at which the regulation is to be considered; (ii) a brief statement as to the regulation under consideration; [and] (iii) reference to the legal authority of the agency to act; ….” Yet, that never occurred for all of the regulatory topics for the sections that were not included in the agency’s “Proposed” regulations. This is an important matter of transparency – providing to the public a clear list what areas of regulation are intended to be reviewed and amended. The public and the entities being regulated should know from the beginning what areas of regulation the agency intends to change. By avoiding disclosing all the areas the Department and Board intended to amend they violated both the letter and spirit of the law.
“In this case, the Department and Board initially indicated they would review and amend only six areas of the regulations, and instead ended up changing more than 20. The public had no ability to weigh in on these changes until after the Board had already voted.”
Cobb said, “There is a specific, detailed, and yes sometimes cumbersome regulatory process that, whether we like it or not, is the law of Virginia. Without a framework, and without criteria and accountability for regulatory agencies, one can only imagine the damage that could be done in any arena by regulatory bodies.”
“The Family Foundation fully supports the actions taken by these appellants,” added Cobb. “It is unfortunate that the McAuliffe administration has in its ideological zeal consistently ignored or violated state law throughout this process, but it must be held accountable for those actions. The regulatory process has rules that must be followed. Again, this appeal is about that legal process and this administration’s ignorance of or disdain for that process.”
Appellants in the case who appeared at today’s press conference were Virginia Board of Health members Megan Getter and Henry Kuhlman, and Itzel Melendez of Richmond. The attorney representing Mrs. Melendez is Dan Carrell of Carrell, Blanton Ferris and Associates, Richmond.
March MadnessMar. 15, 2017
It’s “March Madness” all over again, appropriately playing out in the Tar Heel state – only this time without the basketball.
On March 23 of last year, in response to an outlandish ordinance passed by the City of Charlotte, North Carolina’s state legislature passed House Bill 2, daring to affirm what had always been the case – that in public facilities, men should use the men’s restrooms and women should use women’s. (Novel concept, eh?) And of course as we all know, protests soon-after ensued. Lawsuits were filed. And perhaps most notably of all, the NCAA and the ACC threatened to pull their basketball tournaments from the state if it did not repeal the law – a threat they made good on.
Well according to some North Carolina lawmakers, two can play this game.
In fact, some state legislators are seeking to challenge the NCAA and ACC’s tax-exempt status in response to their retaliatory removal.
According to The Associated Press, “The House members filed a bill Monday directing Senate and House leaders to file IRS complaints against the sports organizations. They would allege the groups are lobbying beyond what their charters allow through "economic retaliation" if House Bill 2 is not repealed.”
My, my, how the tables are turning. The other team picked up the ball, with time still on the clock.
Recall that it was these groups who warned North Carolina that its decision to protect women and children in bathrooms could cost the state millions. I doubt at the time the NCAA and ACC considered that their decisions could come with an equally steep price tag. The tax liability for organizations that large surely must reach into the millions.
I can’t say that I think this kind of economic warfare is a very constructive outlet for civil discourse. However, I do think that if the NCAA and ACC are going to “fire a shot across the bow”, they shouldn’t feel surprised or mistreated when the other side fires back. And no matter how many people love watching the basketball games they sponsor (myself included), the NCAA and ACC are not above the law, and they certainly don’t get to make them. May this be a poignant reminder to them of that reality.
Believe Not, Lest Ye Be JudgedMar. 10, 2017
In Wyoming, judges can no longer speak about legal hypotheticals, or at least if he or she happens to reach a hypothetical conclusion that strays from the Left’s strictly-enforced cultural orthodoxy. Accordingly, judges have no right of conscience, and their faith can play no role in the carrying out of their duties – or even apparently when they’re not engaged in any judicial duties at all.
This week, the Wyoming Supreme Court decided to publicly censure Judge Ruth Neely, a municipal judge in the small town of Pinedale, WY, for a comment she made back in 2014 in response to a reporter that she wouldn’t preside over same-sex “marriages” as a magistrate because doing so would cause her to violate her religious beliefs. On that basis, formal charges for ethics violations were brought against her, culminating in Tuesday's decision by the state’s Supreme Court.
According to the 3-2 majority decision, "This case is not about imposing a religious test on judges." (Gee, could have fooled me. Glad you made that clear.) "Rather,” the Court said, “it is about maintaining the public's faith in an independent and impartial judiciary that conducts its judicial functions according to the rule of law, independent of outside influences, including religion, and without regard to whether a law is popular or unpopular." (emphasis added)
That sounds reasonable enough on its face. After all, judges exist to apply the law impartially, as written. But what’s particularly troubling about this case is that when Judge Neely made her comments, no same-sex couple had ever asked her to perform a marriage ceremony for them. In fact, same-sex marriage was not even legal in Wyoming at that time! The U.S. Supreme Court did not impose the concept of “same-sex marriage” on all 50 states until June of 2015. This was a pure hypothetical, which wasn’t even legally possible at the time of her comment.
Furthermore, "Wyoming law does not require any judge or magistrate to perform any particular marriage, and couples seeking to be married have no right to insist on a particular official as the officiant of their wedding," Justice Keith Kautz wrote in the dissent. So even if same-sex “marriage” had been legal, Judge Neely was under no obligation to solemnize any particular marriages. In other words, no judge could be compelled to perform a wedding ceremony - for any reason or no reason at all. Well there you have it. End of story, right??? Wrong.
So much for the “rule of law” – the Court’s insidious justification for silencing a conscientious judge. Judge Neely’s only error was failing to realize that she should never count on the law to stand in the way of the cultural Marxist agenda (within which the “LGBT” agenda rests). (See Chief Justice Robert’s famous last words in his Obergefell v. Hodges dissent: “[The Constitution] had nothing to do with it.”) See, when you’re a judge, you’re supposed to look past the law any time it dictates or permits a result inconsistent with the prevailing liberal orthodoxy, which Judge Neely neglected to do. That’ll teach her.
But perhaps what is most frustrating about the Court’s statement is that it misrepresents the nature of “religion” and thereby dismisses its legitimate place in civil society, including in the lives of civil servants. Thankfully, one of Virginia’s own, Thomas Jefferson, had the foresight to articulate its meaning and significance, and his words stand as a pillar of freedom in Virginia’s Bill of Rights to this day:
Bill of Rights - Article 1, Section 16. “That religion or the duty which we owe to our Creator, and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence; and, therefore, all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience; and that it is the mutual duty of all to practice Christian forbearance, love, and charity towards each other. No man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burthened in his body or goods, nor shall otherwise suffer on account of his religious opinions or belief; but all men shall be free to profess and by argument to maintain their opinions in matters of religion, and the same shall in nowise diminish, enlarge, or affect their civil capacities.” (emphasis added)
Well said, Mr. Jefferson. I shudder to think where we might otherwise be today without your wise words. Judge Neely, you're welcome in the Commonwealth anytime. And don't worry - you won't have to check your conscience at the border when you come.
A Day Without Whiney WomenMar. 08, 2017
First, let me say right up front, as a woman, I have nothing in common with the whiney women who are staging this pout-out other than, possibly, we have the same plumbing. I have taken pleasure for over 40 years in defining the difference between this type of woman and what I call, a Renaissance Woman.
Renaissance women are Winners not Whiners, Leaders not Followers, and most importantly, Victors, not Victims. Either you are one or aren’t. No one can turn you into one because it is a function of self-confidence, an optimistic view of the world, and refusal to be intimidated, marginalized, ridiculed or coerced into believing one point of view over another.
I remember years ago, debating Gloria Steinem on the Phil Donohue Show. I learned as a young woman that there was no way I was going to change the mind of this entrenched feminist who embraced socialist beliefs. So, I addressed my concerns to the audience and appealed to them to think for themselves and express their own opinions, apart from these self-appointed spokesmen.
I must have hit a nerve with the audience because there was a pile-on against Gloria and it was later reported that she was furious at Phil that he did not step in and defend her position.
Isn’t that rich? Here she is, a veteran TV personalty, very much my senior, claiming women are strong and don’t need men, yet she whined when one didn’t defend her against a young novice who had only done TV one other time.
That is who is marching today. They are privileged women who have had the luxury of spending four or more years in universities, sitting at the feet of their adored indoctrinators, who tell them they are victims and deserve safe places to be able to hear the echoed sounds of their own voices without trigger words that hurt their itty bitty feelings.
Yeah, girls, that’s not reality. I don’t have the luxury of not working today because I run my own business and lots of people depend on me to be here. I would be hurting myself and real people, not some politician or political cause by not working. These women are as embarrassing as the ones who wore pink vaginas on their heads the day after the inauguration telling everyone not to touch their private parts. Well, don’t wear them on your heads you goofy women. They demand respect yet show none for themselves. They want men to turn the other way when they march topless in the street and claim men are the ones with the issues when they happen to look at a topless woman. Seriously?
Who are these women and who in the world would ever hire them? They are the whiners who clog up a system, poisoning the atmosphere with their petty, selfish demands, and turn on a dime to accuse anyone of anything who doesn’t agree with them. They remind me of little wild animals that are cute to watch, until you get too close and they spring, biting your nose and clawing your face.
They have lost all credibility with real women who just shake their heads with embarrassment at the rantings of the Ashly Judds and Madonnas of their movement. Who on the “right” could say they want to blow up the White House and would not be sitting in jail today?
And why aren’t these women defending another woman, Ivanka Trump, who has two major department stores boycotting her line? Why aren’t they marching in support of her? Isn’t that just blatant sexism and misogeny? It is also a little anti-Semitic considering the fact that Ivanka is Jewish. Why aren’t they storming the doors of Nordstrom’s and Neiman Marcus, demanding they put her dresses and shoes back on the racks? Because … she is not one of them … thank goodness.
She is one of the renaissance women who got up today and went to work because dozens of people are depending on her to be the leader. She did not run to any organization or government agency to complain that she was a victim of a boycott. No, she put her big girl pants on and did what she does every day …. including today … she went to work. Because unlike these women today who think they will be missed … Ivanka truly will be missed because she actually is creating, building, doing, making, expanding, influencing, and fulfilling her destiny as … yes … a Renaissance Women.
So, with that one example we can see the distinction between the whiners and the winners, the leaders and the followers, the victims and the victors. And I can guarantee you that ALL those renaissance women are at work today, fulfilling their obligations, and making a positive difference in the lives of others. They aren’t out protesting, blaming someone else for their sad pitiful lives of empty anger directed at anyone who does not approve of their tantrums.
Look how these same women have trashed every conservative, Republican woman for years at the same time claiming they speak for all women. No, ladies, you don’t. We can speak for ourselves and our identity is not wrapped up in our sexuality, our political affiliation or our philosophical persuasion.
We are uniquely different and each of us has our own ideas, opinions, beliefs and do not need a movement to break glass ceilings. We broke those years ago, but still operate in shadows of success because the liberal establishment has determined strong women, who think for themselves, are dangerous and must be destroyed.
You can march and scream and cry and rant and rave all you want. Heh, it’s a free country … but do not claim you do that on my behalf against a man you hate, but who sits as the President of the United States, whether you like it or not.
Take a cue from the conservative women who lost twice to a man with opposing views to theirs. They kept their powder dry and reloaded in 2016 to elect people who understand that America is the greatest country in the world, that promotes freedom of expression and the choice in the way that is carried out.
Travel the world and see how women in many other countries are treated and decide if you would rather live there or not. Lot’s of people promised to move if Trump was elected, but I didn’t see one moving van pull into Beverly Hills to take gilded furniture to Canada. So much for that empty promise.
So, they should take the day to go shopping. At least they can do something positive by stimulating the economy. I think I saw a new line of “big girl pants” in Ivanka’s fashions. I would suggest all these whiney women, who embrace the idea that they are victims, follow the example of real women and go buy a pair … on line.
By Nina May, Founder and Chairman of The Renaissance Women
Sex MattersMar. 06, 2017
In a welcomed move, the United States Supreme Court this morning responded to the Trump administration’s recent guidance document on school locker rooms, showers and bathrooms by vacating the Fourth Circuit’s May 2016 opinion in the case of G.G. v. Gloucester County School Board, instructing the lower court to rehear the case in light of this policy reversal.
The Court was brief and unobtrusive in its Order, writing only the following:
“The judgment is vacated, and the case is remanded to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit for further consideration in light of the guidance document issued by the Department of Education and Department of Justice on February 22, 2017.”
This is good news for students and parents everywhere who care about the privacy, dignity and safety of public school children. Last year, the Obama administration radically distorted a federal law that is meant to equalize educational opportunities for women, putting the privacy, dignity and safety of school kids at risk.
But with last month’s letter rescinding that Obama-era policy and now the Supreme Court’s vacating the lower court’s decision that bowed to that radical departure from the law’s meaning, the legal tide is quickly turning on this issue. And if the Fourth Circuit stays true to its own logic when it rendered its first opinion – that gave a federal agency near absolute power in interpreting law – upholding the federal agency’s interpretation of Title IX, then we should expect their decision this time to go the opposite way, effectively meaning that “sex” would simply mean what it has always meant – biological male or female.
It’s common sense that boys should not be given access to girls’ showers and locker rooms. No one should expect young girls to undress and be exposed to a member of the opposite sex in intimate settings like showers and locker rooms. A Mason-Dixon poll conducted in January found that 57 percent of Virginians oppose allowing school children to use the shower, locker room or restroom of their choice. Reasonable Virginians can find a way to accommodate a small number of students struggling with sexual identity without compromising the rights of every other child. Perhaps now, we can finally begin to have that conversation.
'Standing' for the TruthMar. 06, 2017
This past week the Supreme Court of Virginia heard a rousing and highly technical case involving a transgender policy recently adopted by Fairfax County Public Schools. (It’s amazing just how technical the whole issue of male vs. female anatomy has become in political and legal circles, since most of us learned this stuff in kindergarten.)
Only, the Court never got to the merits of the case to decide whether Fairfax County has the legal authority to alter anatomical reality and render boys and girls indistinguishable in their student Code of Conduct. The hearing was limited to the issue of “standing”, or the ability of a Fairfax County student and his parents to even bring the lawsuit in the first place. So not exactly primetime territory for the Perry Mason’s of the world, but still fascinating stuff for legal and policy wonks, and very important stuff for average ordinary parents and students when it comes to protecting their rights. Yet even for us wonks in the room, to hear the judges and lawyers go round and round gave the impression that this thing is a real legal quagmire.
The issues revolved around the legal effect of what’s known in Virginia as the “Dillon’s Rule”. It’s a doctrine of statutory construction which basically says that local governing bodies (including school boards) have no authority to do anything except those things which have been expressly granted to them either in their charter, or by statutory laws in the Code of Virginia. Virginia courts have always applied the rule very strictly, so anything that falls outside of the expressed power just a little bit will typically be invalidated.
The student and parents maintain (as do I) that the school board’s addition of the concepts of “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” in their student code of conduct is outside the bounds of what the General Assembly has permitted them to do. And therefore, in violating a state statute (not to mention a constitutional right), the Dillon’s Rule provides for the right to sue when a person has been harmed by that overreach. The arguments centered on this doctrine, its case-law, and the particular facts and claims in this case. It was clear that both sides felt that this situation was unique in the context of legal precedent.
As I watched the oral arguments, all of the rigmarole over nuanced and seemingly conflicting legal doctrines led me to ask one practical question, which I hope will cross the Justices’ minds, too: If a student has no legal ability to challenge an unlawful school policy that chills his free speech and threatens to punish him at any moment, and if parents likewise have no ability to sue a school to prevent their child from being harmed by an illegal and indefensible policy, how can justice ever be served in such scenarios? How can their legitimate grievances be addressed? Can schools simply take advantage of this apparent “loop hole” to create any policy they want to? The attorney for Fairfax County Schools seemed to concede as much. Clearly, the implications of the Court’s decision are significant.
As for my judicial punditry, my bet’s on a 4-3 split in favor of sanity and common sense. Then again, as the underlying issue in this case reminds us, common sense ain’t so common anymore. But it’s still alive and kicking, thanks to some courageous students and parents in Fairfax County unwilling to accept lawlessness in their schools.
Gone But Not Soon ForgottenFeb. 27, 2017
On Saturday, the General Assembly wrapped up its 2017 legislative session, one that saw some surprises, some wins, some losses, and some very big changes.
Amidst final action on dozens of bills on Friday and Saturday, the House of Delegates, unfortunately, failed to override Governor Terry McAuliffe’s veto of legislation that would redirect some taxpayer funds away from Planned Parenthood to real, comprehensive health care clinics. The vote predictably fell short of the two-thirds of the 100 members required to override a veto, something that hasn’t happened during Terry McAuliffe’s administration. Remarkably, a day earlier, the Governor listed protecting Planned Parenthood as a top priority, ahead of feeding starving children and ending the Opioid epidemic. Such is the case for someone whose few accomplishments in four years includes propping up the abortion industry.
Earlier in the week, the House of Delegates put the finishing touches on a resolution that could significantly rebalance power in Virginia government from unelected bureaucrats back to the people’s elected representatives where it truly belongs. By a vote of 52-46 the House, and 21-19 the Senate approved HJ 545, patroned by Delegate Chris Head (R-17, Roanoke). The House majority was supplied by 51 of the 66 Republicans and one Democrat, while the Senate vote was party line.
The resolution would allow the General Assembly, by a majority vote in both chambers, to repeal a regulation by a state government agency. A version of this proposal has been introduced from time to time over the last dozen years or so, but has never even reached the Senate floor.
In order for the resolution to go on the ballot for voters to ratify or reject in November 2018, it must be adopted by both chambers in the exact same language again next year, when a newly elected General Assembly convenes. No gubernatorial action is required.
The legislature also completed work on budget amendments for the final year of the biennium budget. The $107 billion budget includes language fought for in previous years that prohibits taxpayer funding of low-income abortions except in cases of rape, incest and where the life of the mother is at risk, along with funding abortion of unborn children with severe disabilities. Efforts to remove the disability abortion funding failed, but several budget negotiators were appalled at information we gave them showing that the number of disability abortions has more than doubled per year since Terry McAuliffe became governor, and committed to working on this in the next budget, when we have a new (and hopefully pro-life) governor.
In the coming days, we’ll be sending you several action alerts, urging you to contact Governor McAuliffe on bills that have reached his desk, including those that protect the religious charities from government discrimination, give more choices and information to parents regarding education, and protect free speech on college campuses.
This year’s session was also the last that will be held in the current General Assembly Building, commonly called the “GAB.” The decades-old structure, a hodgepodge of several buildings joined together, will be torn down in the coming year and replaced. During the four-year project, the legislature will move to the Pocahontas Building, which sits directly across Main Street from our office. Logistics for next year will be new for everyone, and many questions will remain unanswered until the legislature arrives in January. Regardless, we’ll keep you informed and seek your engagement wherever and whenever the General Assembly meets!
Finally, perhaps the biggest news out of Richmond in the final weeks was the retirement announcement of Speaker of the House Bill Howell (R-28, Fredericksburg). Speaker Howell has been at the helm of the Republican House caucus for fifteen years, a time during which the Republican majority in the House grew, and we saw great success in our legislative agenda. Upon his announcement, House Republicans quickly confirmed that Majority Leader Kirk Cox (R-66, Colonial Heights) will be the next Speaker, and Delegate Todd Gilbert (R-15, Woodstock) will become Majority Leader. Delegates Cox and Gilbert are both previous Family Foundation Legislator of the Year award recipients and have worked with us on many legislative priorities over the years. We look forward to working with them in the future in their new roles.
Accountability for Abortion Centers: Six Years and CountingFeb. 24, 2017
Six years ago today, the Virginia General Assembly passed the law to hold abortion centers to reasonable health and safety standards for the first time. Virginia, like many other states, resolved to make certain that the Kermit Gosnell's of the world could no longer remain unaccountable for the ghastly practices and horrific conditions inside their abortion facilities. But that accountability didn't happen overnight. Even though the bill included an "emergency provision" in order to take prompt effect, the Board of Health still had to write the regulations.
Several months later, after much deliberation, the regulations went into effect, opening the door to periodic inspections which have allowed us to discover what was really going on inside these abortion centers and to see whether they were actually complying with the law. And just as we had suspected, the evidence has shown substantial and widespread health and safety violations. Since the first Health Department inspections of mid-2012, beginning with 20 abortion centers statewide, over 1,300 individual regulatory violations have been cited in official records from the Health Department. And those were just the ones cited, though certainly not representing exhaustive searches. In that time, six centers have closed their doors, with 14 remaining.
One abortion center - Virginia Health Group in Fairfax - was so bad, that within 24 hours of a 52-page report of violations, Governor McAuliffe's own Department of Health suspended its license, effectively shutting it down for good. Yet remarkably, the evidence does not show that many of these centers are improving their health and safety record over time. In November of 2016, during the most recent round of biennial inspections, the Annandale Women and Family Center was cited for 117 regulatory violations in a 144 page report - the most ever cited in a single abortion center inspection report. The record of these centers is replete with egregious examples of health violations including bloody, unsterilized medical equipment, doctors and nurses not washing hands or re-gloving between patients, and violations of state and federal drug laws.
It is within this context that Governor McAuliffe and his majority-appointed state Board of Health have spent the last three years doing everything they can to roll back and water down the abortion center health and safety regulations. Despite overwhelming evidence of their necessity, this administration will clearly stop at nothing to pay back favors to the billion dollar abortion industry. We spent that time resisting these attempts at every turn, but elections do have consequences, and time and power eventually prevailed in stripping the regulations of their force.
As of Monday, the final amended regulations have been posted for one final 30-day period before which they will take effect. Our options now are limited, but we are committed to continuing the fight where we can. We recognize, after all, that every life has tremendous value. That includes the lives of the babies whose lives are taken in these halls of death, but it also means the women who are permanently impacted by their experience there and who also deserve to be treated with care according to high standards of health and safety. We believe that ensuring that has led to positive and meaningful results that promote and preserve life in our state. And that's something worth fighting for.
Feed Planned Parenthood, Then the KidsFeb. 24, 2017
Each week, the Governor’s office sends a press release listing their “Top 5” accomplishments from the week. Apparently, this list is supposed to be reflective of the Governor’s priorities.
So the order at the top of this week’s “Top 5” list is very telling:
- Governor McAuliffe Vetoes Legislation Defunding Women’s Health Provider Planned Parenthood
- Governor McAuliffe Signs Bills Strengthening Virginia's Opioid Abuse Prevention and Treatment Efforts
- Dorothy McAuliffe & Kathleen Sandoval: Ending Childhood Hunger Isn't Just the Right Thing to Do — It's Smart
That’s right, this Governor, who derides “divisive social issues” every chance he gets, put making sure taxpayers are propping up Planned Parenthood's abortion centers ahead of dealing with Virginia’s destructive Opioid crisis and ending childhood hunger!
There’s little doubt that advancing the progressive left’s social agenda has been a top priority of this Governor, particularly that of the $1 billion abortion industry, regardless of his rhetoric. Today’s list is simply reflective of that reality. He puts protecting Planned Parenthood, a business responsible for the deaths of thousands of unborn children every year, ahead of ending hunger, ahead of helping people with addiction.
This is McAuliffe’s “new Virginia.” One where Planned Parenthood reigns supreme.
Pro-adoption Bill Poised to Become LawFeb. 23, 2017
To be pro-life is to take a holistic view of the value of human life and to promote those institutions, like the family, which are critical for human flourishing. That’s why, in addition to fighting to protect unborn life, we work hard to encourage adoption for kids who need a mom and a dad. This year in the Virginia General Assembly, we have an opportunity to do that in a unique way.
Senate Bill 1412, patroned by Senator Dave Suetterlein (R-19, Roanoke), creates a new classification of paid leave for a state employee who adopts an infant under a year old. Currently, mothers who give birth to a child are offered paid maternity leave by their state employer, but parents who adopt a newborn child don’t receive that benefit. If this bill is signed into law – and it looks like it will be – then adoptive parents employed by the state will also be able to take that time to bond with their new baby in the same way as natural parents can.
This is a good and pro-life public policy because the Commonwealth of Virginia is saying ‘we are going to value and encourage adoption.’ It’s also good public policy because it seeks to treat new parents equitably, recognizing the critical nature of the first few weeks together between an infant child and his or her parents. Encouraging adoption is also good fiscal policy when considering the cost to the state in the long run for the care of each child until adulthood.
Meanwhile, the more we can promote and facilitate adoption, the more we can take away incentives for abortions. What if every woman who wasn’t ready for a child knew that there was someone waiting who was? Probably more would choose life. And just maybe, with the help of this new law, more people will choose adoption.
Private PartsFeb. 21, 2017
It was quite an interesting morning outside the Governor’s Mansion on Capitol Square today. Late yesterday Governor Terry McAuliffe’s office released his “Public Schedule” for the week:
You’ll note that his “Public Schedule” includes “Governor McAuliffe to act on legislation impacting womens health” at 9:45 am today at the Executive Mansion. Now, we are well aware that the so-called “progressive” left has some difficulty discerning what is public and private (see bathrooms), and we learned this morning that this apparently includes what constitutes a “public” event.
You see, several of us who wanted to see the Governor’s “public” activity showed up at the Mansion and tried to gain access. Only when we did we were informed that no, the event wasn’t “public,” it was private. Yet we watched as several people entered the event without showing any form of ID, so how the Capitol Police could distinguish between those invited to the public/private event is anyone’s guess. Perhaps it was the signs we were carrying that said things like “Defund Planned Parenthood” and “Planned Parenthood Lies” that made us undesirable.
So undesirable, in fact, that we were then informed that we couldn’t hold up our signs because we “didn’t have a permit.” This was a bit perplexing since we know that permits aren’t granted for any areas of Capitol Square with the exception of the area around the Bell Tower, far removed from the Capitol and the Executive Mansion; and this despite having witnessed numerous groups all session long being allowed to hold up signs wherever and whenever they pleased. We’ve watched Planned Parenthood apologists line the sidewalks of Capitol Square with their signs. Apparently, they are permitted to do that. In all fairness to the Capitol Police, they were just “doing what we’re told,” apparently by the administration, because we did hold up signs when we first arrived, but then we couldn't.
While standing outside the fence surrounding the Governor’s Mansion unable to hold up our signs, we were able to hear the Governor pontificate on how it is so important to have an “open and inclusive” Virginia where everyone feels welcome. While we were standing outside the fence. Barred from being welcome.
The Governor then very publicly (sort of) vetoed legislation that would have redirected taxpayer dollars away from Planned Parenthood toward real health clinics that offer comprehensive care for women. McAuliffe was joined at this public (oh, never mind) campaign rally by candidate for Governor Ralph Northam and candidate for AG Mark Herring.
For the second year in a row, the Governor celebrated vetoing a bill supported by 54 percent of Virginians; last year he did so at a Planned Parenthood abortion center. At least this year he did it in public/private/behind a fence.
Save the Babies!Feb. 15, 2017
The definition of “women’s health care” is as fluid it seems as the definition of gender, at least to the political left. Yesterday’s floor debate in the state Senate is another example.
As the Senate was debating Delegate Ben Cline’s bill to redirect non-Medicaid funding away from Planned Parenthood to comprehensive health care facilities, Senator Barbara Favola lamented that such a prohibition would end a contract the state has with a Planned Parenthood affiliate to provide STD testing. She worried that such a change would endanger “women’s health” and put unborn babies at risk (no, really) because they are more likely to have health issues if their moms have an STD:
Never mind that being killed in the womb is “no fault of their own” either, Favola and Planned Parenthood itself sure are awfully concerned about STD testing all of the sudden, which is kind of surprising. You see, over the past year plus while the industry was fighting to dilute abortion center health and safety standards, they fought to remove a requirement that abortion centers provide STD testing!
That’s right, the same people lamenting that they aren’t going to get paid by taxpayers to do STD testing also fought against having to do STD testing. Apparently, it’s only women’s health care when you profit off of the taxpayers.
And by the way, there is no reason that community health clinics can’t apply for the same grant and provide the same service. And they can do so in really “underserved” areas because they actually have clinics in underserved areas. There are no Planned Parenthood abortion centers west of Roanoke. There are dozens of community health care centers.
It really is remarkable that the abortion industry seems absolutely incapable of being honest in any way. Or they are completely blind to their own distortions. But they can get away with it because there is absolutely no one in the media that is going to challenge their claims.
Faking NewsFeb. 08, 2017
If anyone ever wondered why so few people trust the “mainstream” media, today’s stories about two bills that passed yesterday in the House of Delegates and state Senate are clear evidence.
Now, as someone who has been doing political media work for nearly 20 years, let me first say that there are still good reporters out there trying to be accurate. Not all reporters are so blatantly biased that they manipulate stories, and even some who have bias do an admirable job of trying to be fair. But the decline in accuracy, the inability to even begin to hide bias, the have-to-get-this-online immediately syndrome, and quite frankly, the rise of a generation of reports who have no concern about being subjective and inaccurate has ruined media credibility and if not corrected is going to have devastating consequences for our nation. Fake news is just the beginning.
Back to today’s news stories (some of which first appeared online last night, leaving no time for any reporter to verify claims made).
In a story delivered by the Associated Press to multiple news outlets concerning the passage of a House bill that would redirect money away from Planned Parenthood, several false claims were made and printed as if true. The first claim, that abortion makes up only 3 percent of Planned Parenthood’s business, has been repeatedly proven false and misleading, even by the media’s own “fact-checkers.” The statement is not attributed to anyone in particular in the story, so where did the “reporter” (I’ll explain why that’s in quotes shortly) get the information? Was it her own bias? Did someone with Planned Parenthood or some other abortion-defending group tell her? It’s in the paragraph that prefaces other claims with “according to the organization.” Does that apply to the 3 percent claim? Who exactly should be held accountable for the falsehood?
Another false claim in the article states, “Without the funding, the organization says it would have to shut its five clinics in the state.” The reality is that most of the money Planned Parenthood receives is from Medicaid, which this bill doesn't address, and the amount of taxpayer dollars that would be affected by this bill is relatively small. Small enough that it would have no bearing on whether or not a facility would close.
Late this afternoon, a correction on the second claim was posted on the story on the Richmond Times-Dispatch website, stating, “An earlier version of this story reported erroneously that losing funding would force the group to close its five clinics in the state. Planned Parenthood officials said defunding would ‘significantly undermine our ability’ to provide services at the clinics, but they did not say the facilities would close.” Frankly, the correction is just as false as the original statement, but it’s at least moving in the direction of accuracy.
Here’s the interesting part, the “reporter” on the story is, in fact, a student at VCU and not a professional journalist. Because news outlets are bleeding money and most veteran reporters in Richmond have been kicked to the curb or left for other jobs, some media outlets are relying on something called the Capital News Service, which is primarily staffed by college kids! So, the Associated Press story was not actually written by someone with the AP, but by a college student.
Now, I’m all for “real life” experience for college kids. Heaven knows many could use some. But relying on a college student for actual news reporting is far removed from the days when they would research and verify facts for a story, not have the actual byline! Regardless, an editor somewhere along the way should have known about the 3 percent falsehood. It’s easily found with a simple Google search. Clearly, no one cared if the story was accurate, just that it went online quickly and, I dare say, fit the narrative that Planned Parenthood must be saved at all cost.
A second story came from the Richmond Times-Dispatch regarding a religious liberty bill that passed the state Senate. It quoted the Senate Democrat caucus this way: “The Virginia Senate Democratic Caucus issued a news release saying the bill would allow state employees to refuse marriage licenses to people based on religious beliefs.”
Except that statement is patently false. The bill clearly defines to whom it would apply and “state employees” are nowhere to be found. It’s very limited to those associated with religious organizations in the performance of duties associated with the organization. Again, the story popped up online and my guess is the reporter had no time to verify the claim, which was since deleted from the online version of the story. This afternoon, after the reporter was made aware of the erroneous claim, the Senate Democrat caucus issued a correction saying, “Yesterday's press release incorrectly stated that Senator Carrico's SB 1324 would allow state employees to refuse to issue marriage licenses on account of their sincerely held religious beliefs. That was not the intention of the bill. We apologize for the staff error and commit to further quality controls in order to make sure this does not happen again.”
Intention? No, it’s the actual language of the bill, but here’s to “quality controls” to make sure facts are used. Perhaps the editors at the Associated Press and RTD should think about some “quality controls” as well.
Of course, online corrections to these stories is simply too late. How many people go back and read a story again to find the corrections hidden at the bottom? My guess is you won’t see these false claims challenged in any meaningful way on any media website or in print. Anchors or reporters on newscasts (like here) who may have quoted the falsehoods won’t likely begin tonight’s newscasts with an apology (rarely do you see that happen) or correction. The fact is the narratives for these stories were affirmed and people were fed falsehoods that they will continue to believe because “it was in the news.”
I repeat, some of these errors can be attributed to reporters not having time to verify claims in the age of news is now. But still, these falsehoods are suspect on their face and a simple reading of the legislation will show them to be false. Clearly, a reporter should have time while sitting waiting for votes to be cast to actually read the bills? An editor should be aware that fact-checkers have found statements to be false or misleading. Some of it may be shear laziness.
But a lot of it is biased. Too many reporters believe what confirms their bias. How do we know? Last night, when talking with reporters about the Planned Parenthood bill, we challenged the false claims, because the "AP" story was already online. And we were ignored. To me, that’s proof they weren’t interested in truth, but in telling their version of reality, which just happens to align with Planned Parenthood’s.
And that’s why people are just as willing to believe “fake news” as they are what they are being fed by the “mainstream” media.
VA Planned Parenthood ExposedFeb. 08, 2017
Planned Parenthood has been exposed. Again. This time, it involves Planned Parenthood’s Virginia Beach center.
A new video by the group Live Action records a phone call to the abortion center. While the caller is placed on hold, the center’s recording states: “Did you know that Planned Parenthood can take care of all your reproductive health needs? Whether it’s an annual exam, pregnancy testing and counseling, prenatal care, we are here for you with high-quality, low-cost services.”
Then, when the Planned Parenthood representative picks up the line, the caller asks whether they offer prenatal care. The PP rep is quick to say they don’t offer it. She then admits that the group’s other two affiliates in Richmond and Hampton don’t offer prenatal care either!
Watch it here (starting around 1:40):
According to Planned Parenthood’s own website, “Prenatal care is the care you receive from a health care provider, such as a doctor or midwife, during pregnancy. During prenatal care visits, your health care provider will make sure you and the developing fetus are healthy and strong. These regular checkups are your chance to learn how to manage the discomforts of pregnancy, have any testing you may need, learn warning signs, and ask any questions you may have.”
Boy, that’s not something you hear every day from Planned Parenthood. And apparently in Virginia, you’re not likely to see it in action either. Since “making sure that [mom] and the developing fetus are healthy and strong” doesn’t exactly help Planned Parenthood’s bottom line, don’t plan on ever seeing it happen.
Planned Parenthood Now Provides What???Feb. 07, 2017
Unprecedented efforts are being made to strip Planned Parenthood and the entire abortion industry of taxpayer funding. Conservatives in Congress and state legislatures are now zeroing in on the abortion giant who, in addition to performing 323,999 abortions in the U.S. in 2014 alone, has recently been referred for investigation in several states for the criminal trafficking of fetal body parts.
For the 2015 budget year, Planned Parenthood received $553.7 million for “government health services grants and reimbursements.” That’s just the federal government, and it doesn’t include money flowing to other abortion providers. In Virginia, Del. Ben Cline (R-Amherst) has carried a bill for the past two years to prevent non-Medicaid state tax dollars from going to abortion centers like Planned Parenthood. The money would instead go to the 139 federally-qualified healthcare clinics in the state who don’t perform abortions and who, unlike abortion centers, provide comprehensive healthcare for women.
Opponents of the bill say it’s not necessary to strip abortion centers of state funding since Virginia consistently includes in its budget a prohibition against state funding for abortions, with certain exceptions. Planned Parenthood, they claim, uses the money for “other services”, but not abortions. But that is an absurd argument since money, as we know, is fungible.
But their claim does invite the question of what “other” services is Planned Parenthood providing anyway? Well, for starters, we know they don’t perform mammograms. We know they don’t provide prenatal care. And as for ultrasounds, we know that they are predominantly used only for the purpose of performing abortions. We know that the State Board of Health recently passed regulations that, among other things, removed the requirement for abortion centers to provide STD testing and screening. Meanwhile, their oft-repeated claim that abortion comprises “only 3% of [their] services” has been thoroughly debunked.
But there is one service we now know Planned Parenthood is providing in Virginia. They have recently begun promoting it on their website.
Drum roll, please: Hormone therapy for “transgendered” individuals.
As of September 19 of last year, the Virginia League for Planned Parenthood – which includes centers in Richmond, VA Beach, and Hampton – began offering services to help a man “transition” into the likeness of a woman, and vice versa. According to the League’s website, they offer “Hormone therapy” which “may include: Feminizing medications, Anti-androgen medications, and Masculinizing medications.”
So let me get this straight: Even if I could agree that taxpayer dollars are not directly paying for abortions when they are sent to Planned Parenthood, I can be confident that some money will go towards perpetuating a person’s mental health condition regarding his or her perceived sex, while furthering a dangerously false notion that a person’s sex is defined only by how they feel at the time?
Well, just in case we needed another reason to totally defund Planned Parenthood, there it is folks. That should do it.
 “being something (such as money or a commodity) of such a nature that one part or quantity may be replaced by another equal part or quantity in paying a debt or settling an account”; https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fungible
Crossover Sees Wins, LossesFeb. 06, 2017
As the General Assembly approaches “crossover,” the day after which each chamber can consider only bills that have passed the other chamber, dozens of bills have been disposed of in committee or, now and then, on the floor of either the House or Senate.
First the good news, a handful of bills creating new "hate crimes" were defeated in House and Senate committees this week. And though it may sound strange, that is a victory for conscience rights.
Hate crimes essentially punish thought, and one could be subject to a separate criminal penalty, including jail time, not for the actual crime, but simply because of the thoughts at the time. In Virginia, conviction of a hate crime carries with it a “mandatory minimum” of 30 days in jail. One can clearly see the slippery slope created by this sort of “thought crime”. What sort of thoughts, values, or motivations might the state try to criminalize next?
As we watch the progressive left use violence and bullying to silence speech it doesn’t like, criminalizing thoughts in any way is a dangerous step. Luckily, those in the House and Senate courts committees agreed.
Last Thursday, we saw our top religious liberty proposal pass the House of Delegates. This bill, which passed last year but was vetoed by Governor Terry McAuliffe, protects religious charities and schools from being discriminated against by the state simply because those organizations don’t hold the Governor’s view of marriage. (A Senate version passed committee Friday afternoon.)
Also this week, the House passed a resolution recognizing pornography as a serious public health problem. The devastating effects of pornography on society are now being chronicled in research and for many, in their own lives. From addiction to destroying marriages to its impact on human trafficking, few reasonable people see anything positive in the exploitation of men and women through pornography. Recently, South Dakota became the second state to recognize pornography as a public health hazard. Though this resolution falls short of that, it has brought attention to this serious problem.
Not all, however, went as we hoped this week. Legislation we supported that would have made Virginia’s Education Improvement Scholarship Tax Credit program more attractive to corporate donors failed in the House of Delegates on a “voice vote.” The bill would have increased the tax credit from 65 to 90 percent, bringing Virginia in line with other states that have similar programs. Already, nearly 2,500 low and middle income children are benefiting from the program, which last school year saved the Commonwealth over $4 million. Unfortunately, those arguments didn’t win the day as the bill died on a procedural vote. The good news on school choice is that other proposals, including expanding virtual and charter schools and creating Education Savings Accounts are still making their way through the legislature.
Thank you again to everyone who has responded to our Action Alerts! With all the bills that will be voted on by both the House and Senate on Monday and Tuesday, I know you’ve received several alerts. These are important issues so we hope you’ll be patient and take the time to act so that your elected officials hear from you!
"Blood on Your Hands"Feb. 02, 2017
Two bills were heard Monday in a House subcommittee on Health, Welfare and Institutions. One of them, HB 1563, would effectively remove most of the health and safety standards for abortion centers, putting women at even greater risk when utilizing one of these facilities. The other, HB 2264, would shift state tax dollars away from Planned Parenthood and other abortion centers by reprioritizing the funds to go to comprehensive health clinics and hospitals where women can receive the full range of healthcare services in one place. Thankfully, HB 1563 went down in flames and HB 2264 passed on a vote of 4-1.
Predictably, Planned Parenthood brought their crowd – donned in bright pink – to express opposition to the mere thought of the billion-dollar abortion giant losing any morsel of its precious taxpayer funding. To hear their rhetoric, you’d think Planned Parenthood has a constitutional and unalienable right to public money. I am always struck by the lengths these abortion apologists go to bend and distort the truth to advance their shameless cause. As an attorney, their incessant legal claims of “unconstitutionality” in particular make me cringe. At the same time, they do deserve some credit for their uncanny ability to mobilize their activists. (Come to think of it, maybe that’s what those taxpayer dollars are funding.)
But after the votes were taken, and the pink Planned Parenthood crowd began funneling out of the room, the most peculiar thing happened. A pro-life colleague who had testified on the bills was standing next to me, and one of the abortion activists tapped him on the shoulder as they walked by and said to him “There’s blood on your hands, man.”
Come again? Wow, talk about irony of ironies!
Let’s recall: he had opposed one bill that would have jeopardized the health and safety of women undergoing surgeries, and he supported a bill that would have incentivized women to utilize comprehensive health clinics that could provide for all of their basic needs. His testimony included how his organization objected to calling abortion services “healthcare” since it ended life rather than preserving life. It was Planned Parenthood who had sought to reinstate shoddy, unsanitary and unaccountable abortion centers for women and who had opposed improved access to comprehensive health services for women – all so that it could continue to line its own pockets with state funds, through lower compliance costs, and through the killing of even more babies.
The abortion industry claimed nearly 1 million innocent lives in the U.S. in 2013 alone. Planned Parenthood was responsible for the greatest portion of those. That’s one million innocent children a year ripped limb from limb and whose skulls are crushed in order to preserve organs to be trafficked for profit. So please tell me: Who’s the one with blood on their hands?
There’s so much blood on Planned Parenthood’s hands, it’s unfathomable. All the while, the only thing they seem to care about is keeping those hands in the cookie jar of the state coffers. You would just think that they might have enough respect for the rest of us to back off when we point out to them that when they stick their bloody hands in the jar, the whole jar is contaminated for everyone else.
But there is another reason why it is especially ironic that this abortion activist would accuse the pro-life advocate of having blood on his hands, considering that less than a year ago, an abortion center in Fairfax had its license revoked by Gov. McAuliffe’s own Health Department after a 52-page report of health and safety violations found it to “pose a substantial threat to the safety of the patients and staff of the Virginia Health Group.” Included in that report was an observation that an employee was giving medication to a patient “while wearing gloves visibly soiled with blood”. The clinic never reopened.
We all know that Planned Parenthood and other abortion groups have blood on their hands. It’s just astonishing that they would have the audacity to insist that the rest of us be similarly stained by funding their horrific operations. Fortunately, their days are numbered. They must see the writing on the wall, or else they wouldn’t resort to such extreme tactics – like attempting to pass off their guilt on the very people trying to end their human carnage.
Opposing Campus Free SpeechJan. 31, 2017
To be sure, there are plenty of nuanced reasons for legislators to vote against bills that sound perfectly good on their face. As a general rule, it’s wise to be just a little suspicious of everything that seeks to clothe itself with the force and legitimacy of law. But occasionally, a bill comes along that appears to be magnanimous in every respect. Or, in laymen’s terms: “Ain’t nobody crazy enough to vote against that bill.”
Hypothetically speaking, these are bills like “Resolved, that ice-cream is delicious,” or “Resolved, that freedom is good.” Well of course ice-cream is delicious and of course freedom is a good thing. This is America, after all, and there are just some core principles that come standard-issued.
Monday, in the House Education Committee, Delegate Steve Landes (R-25, Verona) presented a bill that falls safely into this category. It seeks to reinforce campus free speech, presumably in response to the growing instances of colleges across the nation actively suppressing free speech with “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings” for those who wish to express a non-orthodox viewpoint. But the language is straightforward and inclusive, applying with equal force to people of all opinions.
HB 1401 reads, in its entirety:
“Except as otherwise permitted by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, no public institution of higher education shall abridge the freedom of any individual, including enrolled students, faculty and other employees, and invited guests, to speak on campus.”
Sounds reasonable enough, right? People on public university campuses ought to be able to exercise their constitutionally protected right of free speech. Could there be more of a “softball” bill for every politician to knock out of the park? Perhaps not, since five members (all Democrats) of the committee voted against it.
You’re kidding me, right? Nope. That really just happened.
From among the members voting against the bill, there was only one comment made. It was a question asking for clarification for the words “invited guests.” Delegate Landes responded by pointing out that it was to address the issue of guest speakers who are invited by student groups being prevented from speaking on campus – which, if you’ve been paying attention to the news, seems to be happening a lot these days, and it is almost always those speakers with conservative viewpoints who are targeted.
I’m not going to assign motives to these five Democratic members or draw any conclusions about why they voted the way they did. Since they never spoke up to express their reasons for opposing it, I can’t be sure why. But the facts of the matter are clear, and inferences could certainly be drawn thereupon. And none of them paint their party or its agenda in a very favorable light.
LG Celebrates Roe v Wade, Sort OfJan. 24, 2017
Admittedly, as a doctor, Lt. Governor Ralph Northam is probably not that well-versed in constitutional law. But as the presumptive Democrat nominee for Governor, one would hope he’d have some clue as to what issues Supreme Court decisions are about – particularly since he, as a pediatric neurologist, often claims the “moral” high-ground when it comes to “women’s health.”
Now, it isn’t at all surprising that on Sunday the Lt. Governor sent out an email celebrating the infamous Roe v. Wade decision that imposed abortion on the states. He obviously doesn’t believe that 60 million abortions are nearly enough. He opens his email by saying:
That’s a pretty strong claim in and of itself, but still, it’s standard stuff for someone who champions taking the lives of unborn children with all the vigor they can muster. But then his email gets a bit, well, awkward.
You see, nowhere in the entire email does the Lt. Governor (oh, and did I mention he’s the presumptive Democrat nominee for Governor?) ever mention abortion, you know, the thing Roe v. Wade was about. Predictably, he uses the euphemism “women’s health,” but even there, he goes off on why he thinks you should be forced by the government to pay for the contraceptives of others, in particular, “long-acting, reversible contraceptives (LARCs).”
Now, that may be all well and good, except for the fact that Roe doesn’t have anything to do with contraceptives. That issue was decided a decade earlier in the Griswold v. Connecticut case. To be fair, the Court used the Griswold case as a building block for Roe, but still, one would hope that the LG could keep the two Supreme Court cases straight. Then again, based on his (and other “progressives”) hysterical claims that those dastardly Republicans are somehow going to take away birth control – despite Griswold – maybe he is completely unaware that the Court decided the issue half a century ago.
Or, perhaps he inadvertently just admitted that many “LARCs” are abortifacients that end life at the very start?
Regardless, the LG probably isn’t too worried about these kinds of details. The people he’s emailing are likely disinterested in facts, accuracy, truth – all those silly things that we once at least pretend we wanted in our candidates. As long as he’s okay with adding to 60 million abortions, he's got their vote.
The Family Foundation Action is a non-partisan, non-profit 501(c)(4) organization and paid for this informational communication. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.
"...the schools people go to..."Jan. 23, 2017
If I hadn’t been reading carefully, I might have missed it. After all, reading anything the Washington Post prints is painful enough, and the temptation is to skim. But in an article today about how Democrats plan to rebuild a party that faces minority status at every level of government – including many state legislatures – came an extraordinary admission.
In the article, Jessica Post, executive director of the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee, argues that if the party wants to take back power, it first must focus on winning back state legislatures, because:
Did you catch it?
In a list of priorities that Democrats believe they must control to gain back power that includes obvious mechanics like “voting rights” and “congressional districts,” Post adds “the schools people go to.”
Anyone who has been around the General Assembly long enough knows that if there is one thing progressive liberals fear perhaps even more than losing the “right” to kill their unborn children it’s this – losing the power to control where your children go to school. You see, right now, for the overwhelming majority of families the state (state and local governments) determines where kids go to school, by zip code. Few have the resources to escape. Progressive liberals know that if they can keep your children confined to their schools with their agenda and their ideology, many will fall prey.
That’s why they are so adamantly opposed to any and all forms of education freedom. While they argue that school choice will “cost public schools resources,” etc., the truth is they fear losing control over your children. Ms. Post’s statement shows that the Democrat party has made the connection – whoever controls the education of our children eventually controls the halls of power.
It’s fitting that such an admission took place at the start of National School Choice Week. The battle to free our children from a government controlled, zip code based, antiquated education system is perhaps one of the most important of our generation. From tax credits for donations to scholarship programs for low and middle-income families to virtual schools to education savings accounts, whatever the mechanism, school choice is the battle for the future.