Further Dividing Americans With The Covid Relief Bill

Yesterday The New York Post posted an article about some of the items in the Covid Relief Bill.

The article reports:

Polls show most Americans support the federal COVID-19 relief bill. But if they knew what’s in it, they might feel differently. The bill is an affront to the American ideal of equal treatment under law — and a slap in the face for people who want everyone helped fairly.   

Section 1005 of the bill offers “socially disadvantaged” farm owners total debt forgiveness of up to hundreds of thousands of no-strings dollars per farmer. But white men needn’t apply. The bill’s definition of “socially disadvantaged,” drawn from elsewhere in federal law, limits aid to racial groups who faced historic discrimination.

Newly elected Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.), who proposed the measure, says it will make up for years of discrimination. Sorry, senator, but this is discrimination.

Discrimination likewise mars the bill’s aid to restaurants. It grants restaurant owners up to $5 million per facility to offset losses caused by lockdowns. That’s a lifeline for restaurants barely hanging on.

Here’s the hitch: Only women, veterans and owners of “socially and economically disadvantaged” concerns (again, defined racially elsewhere in federal law) may apply during the program’s first three weeks. Most white males go to the back of the line, even if their needs are more pressing.  

These items in the bill need to be challenged in court–our Constitution states that we are equal under the law (a principle guaranteed by the 14th Amendment). This bill creates a situation where some people are more equal than others.

The article continues:

The bill looks more like reparations than COVID relief. It says farm aid is “for the purposes of addressing the longstanding and widespread discrimination against socially disadvantaged farmers.” Truth is, farmers have been struggling for a decade, and more than half lose money year after year. Minority-owned farms are generally less indebted than those owned by whites, though diminished access to credit may be part of the reason. White and minority farmers alike need debt relief.

Sen. Chuck Schumer crisscrossed the Empire State last weekend, bragging about his role in the relief bill and claiming credit for the $25 billion in aid to restaurants. He warned that 54 percent of New York restaurant owners won’t be able to survive the next six months without help. “They’re needed, because they’re one of the biggest employers in every community in New York, whether it’s urban, suburban . . . or rural.”

That’s the point, Senator. Instead of dwelling on racial or gender equity, the relief bill should focus on ensuring economic survival. All will benefit.

The article concludes:

As Congress debates the relief bill, Republicans should protest the racist giveaways. They’ve hardly been mentioned, and the public is unaware. More are on the way: Warnock and four other Democrats, including New York’s Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, introduced a bill on Feb. 5 to give 32 million acres of farmland to black farmers over the next 10 years. None to whites. Reparations without the label. What’s next?

Racism won’t cure past racism. And it won’t unite the nation.

Voters need to wake up before the 2022 elections and remove the people who support this sort of legal inequality. This bill and those like it will only divide America.

 

 

A Moderate That May Not Be So Moderate

Townhall posted an article today about West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin. Senator Manchin is currently seen as a possible brake on some of the more radical policies being discussed by the Biden regime. A recent remark during an interview might cast a shadow on that idea.

The article reports:

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) has become the moderate Democrat with much more sense than his colleagues. He repeatedly said he thought impeaching President Donald Trump, for a second time, was “ill-advised,” especially since there are not 19 Republicans in the Senate that would move to convict. But now the West Virginia senator has a suggestion: using the 14th Amendment to remove Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Josh Hawley (R-MO) from office.

“Let me read you what the 14th Amendment, Section 3 says. ‘No person shall be a senator or representative in Congress who, having previously taken an oath as a member of Congress to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same.’ Would you support, senator, the removal of Sen. Hawley and Sen. Cruz, through the 14th Amendment Section 3?” PBS News’ Margaret Hoover asked. 

‘Well, they should look – absolutely. I mean, basically, that should be a consideration. And he should you know, he understands that, Ted’s a very bright individual and I get along fine with Ted. But what he did was totally outside of the realm of our responsibilities,” Manchin explained. “Listen to the conversations that people have had, listen to some of the congress people that are still speaking, you know? Listen, around the country, people in different law, in elected positions, these people should be held accountable, because it’s sedition.”

Manchin went on to explain that the United States was formed because our Founding Fathers were tired of living under the tyrannical rule of King George. They believed in a republic so much that they “gave up everything” in pursuit of this new adventure. In his eyes, Cruz and Hawley’s objections to certifying the election results went against the Founding Fathers’ intentions and beliefs.

First of all, how did Senators Hawley and Cruz engage in insurrection? Was it because they contested the 2020 presidential election?

Might I remind you (from Fox News December 31, 2020)

The last three times a Republican has been elected president — Trump in 2016 and George W. Bush in both 2000 and 2004 — Democrats in the House have brought objections to the electoral votes in states the GOP nominee won. In early 2005 specifically, Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., along with Rep. Stephanie Tubbs, D-Ohio, objected to Bush’s 2004 electoral votes in Ohio.

That forced the chambers to leave their joint session and debate separately for two hours on whether to reject Ohio’s electoral votes. Neither did. But the objection by Boxer and Tubbs serves as a modern precedent for what is likely to happen in Congress on Jan. 6.

Notably, some Democrats lauded Boxer’s move at the time, including Durbin himself.

If Democrats want to bring Americans together and heal our divide, this is not the way to do it.

When Government Ignores The Constitution

Yesterday The Washington Free Beacon posted an article yesterday about an incident in San Jose, California, that should give us pause.

The article reports:

In 2013, Lori Rodriguez called San Jose police to her home because her husband was having a mental health crisis and making violent threats. Seven years later, she is petitioning the Supreme Court to force the city to return her guns.

“It’s not right. I shouldn’t have to do this to get back what’s mine,” Rodriguez told the Washington Free Beacon. “They violated several of my constitutional rights.”

Rodriguez claims police ordered her to open the couple’s gun safe so they could seize all of the weapons in the home after her husband was detained for making threats that the city says included “shooting up schools.” Cops seized not only her husband’s weapons but also the guns that were personally registered to Rodriguez. The city has repeatedly rebuffed her requests to return her property.

The suit is now the sole case with Second Amendment implications remaining before the Court after the justices rejected 10 other gun-rights cases on June 15. Rodriguez’s legal challenge comes as the federal government and a number of states debate “red flag” bills that would allow authorities to deny gun rights to citizens. It has the potential to clarify the extent to which the Second Amendment protects individuals from seizures of firearms.

San Jose city attorney Richard Doyle did not respond to a request for comment. The city defended its actions, saying that authorities were within their rights to confiscate the guns, calling Rodriguez’s claim “borderline frivolous.”

“If the government has lawful authority to effect the forfeiture and observes the requirements of due process in so doing, it has complied with the Constitution,” Doyle said in a brief submitted to the Supreme Court on Wednesday. “The forfeiture does nothing whatever to impair the previous owner’s right to buy, possess, or use firearms, and notwithstanding that the owner may recover the full market value of the guns through their transfer and sale.”

The article continues:

Several of the guns confiscated from Rodriguez by San Jose police have special sentimental value, according to Rodriguez. Police confiscated not only handguns that she and her husband purchased but also a war souvenir inherited from a family member.

“One of them is a gun my great uncle brought back from WWII,” she said. “I really want that one back. You can’t replace that one, obviously.”

Don Kilmer, Rodriguez’s lawyer, said that while the case implicates the 2nd Amendment, in addition to the 4th and even 14th Amendments, it ultimately comes down to an undisputed fact: Lori Rodriguez is not prohibited from owning the firearms San Jose took from her house.

“Her mental health has never been at issue,” Kilmer told the Free Beacon. “The law that the city is holding these guns under says that you can confiscate weapons of people who are mentally ill. Lori is not mentally ill.”

In the years since the initial police call, the Rodriguez family continues to live together, but Lori has taken steps to ensure she can legally own the confiscated firearms. She has transferred all of the firearms into her name and she is the only family member who knows the combination to the gun safe. Her lawyers argue that she is in compliance with all California gun laws—including those for individuals who live with people who can not own firearms themselves.

If her husband was the problem and he had no access to the gun safe, how can the city justify taking her guns away? This is definitely overreach.

Reality vs Practicality

Yesterday Andrew McCarthy posted an article at National Review about birthright citizenship. President Trump is considering ending birthright citizenship by executive order. Actually, it’s not so much a question of ending birthright citizenship as it is reviewing exactly what the 14th Amendment actually says.

The article explains:

My friend John Eastman explained why the 14th Amendment does not mandate birthright citizenship in this 2015 New York Times op-ed. In a nutshell, the Amendment states: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.” The highlighted term, “subject to the jurisdiction thereof” was understood at the time of adoption to mean not owing allegiance to any other sovereign. To take the obvious example, if a child is born in France to a married couple who are both American citizens, the child is an American citizen.

If I am living in Britain on a work visa and have a child, that child is not automatically a British citizen. Why should America do things differently?

The article concludes:

Moreover, it seems to me that, because Congress has weighed in on citizenship by codifying the 14th Amendment, the courts will swat down any executive order on the ground that it exceeds the president’s authority. That is, the courts will not even have to reach the merits of what jurisdiction means for purposes of the 14th Amendment and Section 1401.

We have seen something like this in an area of more certain executive power. President Bush attempted unilaterally to set up military commissions in wartime under his commander-in-chief authority. Even though there was plenty of precedent supporting this, the Supreme Court invalidated the commissions and told the president he needed Congress’s statutory blessing. (Congress later enacted the Military Commissions Act.)

Consequently, if the president actually issues an executive order changing the birthright-citizenship policy, I doubt the sun will set before an injunction is issued. I am in favor of changing the current understanding of birthright citizenship, but I believe such a change must be done by statute to have any hope of surviving court-scrutiny . . . and even then, I give it less than a 50-50 chance.

Stay tuned.