This One Simple Strategy Can Help Republicans Everywhere Win Elections

A strange dichotomy has emerged from Bernie Sanders winning Iowa and New Hampshire. On the one hand, the Democrat Party is on its way to nominating an avowed socialist anarchist as its presidential candidate. On the other hand, roughly two-thirds of even today’s Democrat primary voters are voting for people who are at least perceived as more out of the box from the party establishment. If we had a Republican Party with a vision for safe, secure, sovereign, and prosperous communities, it could capitalize on the opportunity of a lifetime to drive a wedge between average suburban voters and the Democrat Party.

When you add together the votes of Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, the two candidates who are most vocal and emphatic about their anarchist socialism, they compose roughly one-third of the primary vote. Also, most of Sanders’ support is buoyed by very young voters. He won a very small share of voters over 45. It’s evident from the first two Democrat presidential contests is that MSNBC and political Twitter don’t reflect America or even the majority of the Democrat electorate.

Whereas 70 percent of the GOP electorate in 2016 voted for Donald Trump or Ted Cruz, two candidates perceived as being to the right of the party establishment, the majority of Democrat voters are choosing candidates who are perceived as being more moderate than the party at large. The clear lesson is that the country is a lot more conservative than the political establishments let on.

It’s also quite evident that it’s downright political malpractice for Republicans to lose so many suburban voters when Democrats are run by Bernie Sanders and George Soros. These voters are disenchanted with both parties, but they certainly have no use for socialism, anarchy, and the embracing of criminals, terrorists, and illegal aliens in their communities. Just look at Democrats in Virginia promoting draconian gun control while they release violent criminals from prison and promote transgenderism in the schools. Suburban voters in states like Virginia might have been wary of Trump’s personality, but they certainly didn’t vote for this.

Imagine if Republicans capitalized on the impending Democrat implosion to actually speak to these voters and win a landslide up and down the ballot in November … and then delivered much-needed change?

However, that would take a coherent and united message, not just from the president, but from all Republicans running for office. What did the GOP-controlled Congress actually do during the first two years of this presidency, aside from the tax cuts? Almost every positive development was brought about through executive actions, many of which continue to be stymied by judicial interference that goes unchecked by Congress. Congressional Republicans should offer voters a new contract articulating what they will actually do on the other side of this election for the forgotten American taxpayers and consumers.

Rather than just winning an election battle, which Democrats are making increasingly easy for the GOP, how about trying to win cultural and civilization wars and actual policy outcomes?

Imagine if we had an entire new movement dedicated to new policies and messaging for returning power to the people from the federal courts, which have upended republicanism.

Imagine a party running on restoring the pyramid of governance and championing localism to make state legislatures great again.

Imagine a party running on creating a new tax system where localism would reign supreme and states would take the lead in setting the overall structure of the code.

Imagine a party that used its entire messaging apparatus to give a vision for an immigration system that enriches America rather than one that turns our communities into dumping grounds.

Imagine if we had a party that, while pushing localism for local issues, made the federal government strong and effective in the few areas it is supposed to dominate to protect national sovereignty and security. A party that relentlessly battled sanctuary cities in deed, not just in half-hearted rhetoric. A party with a vision for stemming the tide of gangs, drugs, and criminal aliens coming over the border and being harbored by these rebellious cities.

Imagine a party that placed the interests of victims of crime and the safety of suburban communities ahead of those of criminals with as much rigor as Democrats promote criminals.

Imagine a party that is able to speak about our 18 years of foreign policy failures engaging in Middle East urban renewal projects and a vision of peace through strength that always puts our interests first and focuses more on the threat at our border and China’s asymmetrical war against us.

Imagine a party that ran on rooting out crony capitalism and venture socialism, such as the ethanol mandate, which raises the cost of food and fuel in order to enrich wealthy lobbyists.

Imagine a party that ran on system reforms to our entire government, such as an Article V Convention, balanced budgets, and term limits.

And imagine a party with a vision of health care that eliminates the insurance cartel from getting between you and your doctor?

Trump is either intuitively oriented or at least open to most or all of these principles. However, absent a party whose congressional, gubernatorial, and state legislative candidates, along with its communications apparatus and donors, uniformly and emphatically push these principles with equal force against the way the Left pushes socialism and anarchy, we will not achieve this bold contrast after the election. Furthermore, absent any strong direction within the ranks of congressional Republicans, the swamp within the executive branch and among GOP leadership will neutralize Trump’s second term.

At the very least, House conservatives should craft a new contract with the forgotten American citizen to place American taxpayers first in everything government does. They should then publicize a 300-day plan of what they will do to further those principles legislatively if they win back the House. At some point, winning elections needs to be about winning the republic. (For more from the author of “This One Simple Strategy Can Help Republicans Everywhere Win Elections” please click HERE)

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Please, Let It Be Bernie Sanders!

The same political class that got 2016 so horribly wrong is now warning us not to underestimate Bernie Sanders.

His opposition to NAFTA and free trade, they tell us, will siphon off the crucial voters in the Midwest who went for President Trump in 2016. Trump should be trembling in fear that that Sanders will be able to channel the discontent that once sent voters, especially white-working class voters, running Trump’s way.

There is no reason to believe this nonsense. Republicans should be thrilled the Democrats might be dumb enough to nominate a man whose views are more outside the political mainstream than any major political candidate since George McGovern.

Sanders’s opposition to NAFTA, a trade agreement that many of his young supporters have never heard of and can’t even spell, has nothing to do with his status atop the Democratic field. And the fact that so many pundits think it does shows a fundamental but typical Inside-the-Beltway misunderstanding of what is actually going on. Sanders is ahead because the Democrats have been captured by far leftists demanding radical change that no else wants.

Sanders wants government to take away Americans’ private health care plans. He wants to raise taxes on everything and everyone. He gives succor to America’s enemies with a spineless, toothless attitude to foreign policy that would especially coddle despotic socialists. This might be Sanders’ path to the nomination, but those things would all lead to his crushing defeat in November. Most Americans are happy with their health insurance plans and want to keep them. Most Americans don’t want their taxes raised. Most Americans don’t support erase all student loans. Most Americas don’t think bread lines are cause for optimism. (Read more from “Please, Let It Be Bernie Sanders!” HERE)

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Call Them Lynch Mob, Fascist Democrats

Democrats in Congress treated Donald Trump the way that Democrats treated blacks, Jews, Quakers, and others in the Old South who did not “behave like they should”.

In the Old South, people who did not “behave” could be lynched by a rope or lynched by a “fixed” trial in which their constitutional rights were not respected. During the impeachment hearings, the Democrats did not allow President Trump or his supporters to present testimony or documents that showed the President was acting entirely within his official powers and duties to investigate the “quid pro quo” threat by Joe Biden not to deliver a billion dollars of aid to Ukraine unless Ukraine stopped investigating Biden’s son and the son’s business associates. Joe Biden even bragged about his “quid pro quo” threat at a Council of Foreign Relations meeting. That was on video!

The Democrats treated Donald Trump like a black, Jew, Quaker, or someone else in the Old South who refused to “behave”.

I am a Democrat who supports Democrats like John F. Kennedy, Hubert Humphrey, and Senator “Scoop” Jackson. But the current leaders of the Democratic Party are just modern versions of the LYNCH MOB, FASCIST DEMOCRATS OF THE OLD SOUTH.

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U.S. Special Forces Soldiers Killed in Ambush Set by Our Afghan Army ‘Friends’

During last week’s State of the Union address, President Trump promised to wind down the operations in Afghanistan, noting that our troops “are warfighters, the best in the world, and they either want to fight to win or not fight at all.” Given that there really is nothing to fight for there but an unreliable Afghan government, Trump said, “We are working to finally end America’s longest war and bring our troops back home!” The deaths of two more soldiers demonstrate that the pace needs to be picked up.

On Saturday, it was announced that two soldiers were killed and six others wounded when a team of commandoes from the 3rd Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group were ambushed by the very Afghan National Army forces they were helping in east Afghanistan. Last year, every special forces group suffered at least one fatality in Afghanistan, and that deadly trend is continuing this year: 22 soldiers died in 2019, the most since 2014. Six soldiers have already died so far this year, in only five weeks.

In the case of Antonio Rodriguez, one of the soldiers killed this week, this was reportedly his tenth deployment. What could possibly be so vital in that land that warrants such exhaustion of our special forces?

Not only are we sending our best warfighters into a meat grinder with no defined mission or logical outcome, we are having them fight for a compromised force, making them subject to endless “green on blue” attacks. In the ultimate paradox, we are so invested in building up the Afghan military that we bring thousands of unvetted Afghans to our shores every year under the guise of helping a war effort that in itself is placing our troops in danger from unvetted coalition “partners.”

Several hundred Afghan military trainees have gone AWOL in our country. The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) observed that the “limited vetting of Afghan trainees, and the restrictions of the investigatory and asylum processes, may pose a security risk to the United States when trainees go AWOL.” We’ve spent about $81 billion on the Afghan security forces, as part of a nearly $1 trillion price tag for the two-decade war.

This social work in a dangerous combat zone should have ended the first month of the Trump presidency. The president has wanted to put Afghanistan in our rear-view mirror, but despite the bipartisan support for ending this madness, the nearly unanimous voices from our broken national security leadership demanded the president double down. In August 2017, the president announced a surge of troops with no strategy of what to do with them. Two and a half years later, it’s time for the president to follow his better judgement and fire those in the administration who are resisting.

What he is likely hearing is what we continue to hear from many establishment Republican congressmen. They essentially argue, “We need to fight them there, so they don’t come here.”

This is exactly what Reps. Dan Crenshaw and Michael Waltz regurgitated yesterday.

This is the most absurd line of argument imaginable. It’s only because of the war that we are bringing foreign nationals to our shores in record numbers. The same unvetted Afghans ambushing our soldiers are being brought here in the thousands every year. The number of special immigration visas from Afghanistan has increased over the Trump years, and they are not subject to the refugee cap. We’ve brought in roughly 65,000 individuals who helped us fight “there.”

These swamp congressmen must understand the admonition of the 9/11 commission staff report: that 9/11 was all about visas and immigration because “terrorists cannot plan and carry out attacks in the United States if they are unable to enter the country.” Now, in addition to 2,500 dead and tens of thousands of wounded soldiers fighting “over there,” we have nothing to show for the war other than 100,000 largely unvetted new Afghan migrants.

There is no need to “negotiate” a phony peace deal with the Taliban. We should pull out on our own timetable, keep our naval and air assets in the region for strike and maneuver operations, which allow us to fight to our strengths instead of our enemies’ strengths, and then seal our own border.

The fact that we had a surge in Afghanistan rather than a redeployment of those soldiers to our border under the Trump presidency is a prime example of the failure of conservative media. The president is undeniably unhappy with our presence in Afghanistan. However, the inertia to stay there is one-sided among the voices at the DOD and State. Absent counter-pressure from outside conservatives, who have been distracted by everything but policy issues for the past three years, the president feels forced to stay the course. Thus, by conservatives laying off the administration, they are not only allowing bad policies to continue, but not giving the president the backing he needs to follow his instincts.

For the families of Sgt. 1st Class Javier J. Gutierrez and Sgt. 1st Class Antonio R. Rodriguez, isn’t it time we all apply John Kerry’s famous question: “How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?” (For more from the author of “U.S. Special Forces Soldiers Killed in Ambush Set by Our Afghan Army ‘Friends’” please click HERE)

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Will Romney’s Betrayal Finally Get Conservatives Focused on Our Own Priorities?

If you were a conservative with a modicum of influence over Republican voters, would you spend your time on air discussing the Democrat primaries all day, or would you try to influence Republican congressional primaries that will actually matter to conservatives? That is the choice in the coming weeks and months confronting anyone who considers himself a movement conservative.

Conservatives were universally shocked and appalled by Mitt Romney’s vote to convict the president on impeachment charges, thereby giving cover to vulnerable Democrats. However, anyone who has cared about any major policy issue aside form impeachment shouldn’t be shocked at all. They should be appalled that liberal Republicans like Romney, who seem to be numberless, continue to be welcome in the party despite dissenting from the party platform on almost every important issue.

As I wrote last week, Romney was running in an open seat in 2018 and had a challenger from the Utah state legislature who was actually the pick of delegates at the state convention. Trump, as he has done in numerous races, pulled the rug out from under his most ardent supporters and endorsed Romney, even though both his liberal policy views and his personal disdain for Trump were well known and articulated for years.

The question now is whether conservatives and the president himself will learn from these mistakes and actually endorse the right people in primaries. The first GOP primaries begin on March 3 in several states including Alabama, Texas, and North Carolina. Early voting begins even sooner. There are numerous House, Senate, and gubernatorial races that feature clear contrasts between conservatives and Romney-style Republicans. Yet there is no focus in conservative media on these primaries, as Trump endorses NeverTrumpers. Instead, they focus on taking sides between Bernie and Biden.

Just take a look at the opportunities ahead of us this cycle. Here is a list of GOP Senate seats that are either vacant or have weak incumbents, providing us an opportunity to move these seats to the right in solid Trump states.

Look at Tennessee, for example. This is a state Trump carried by 26 points statewide and won 92 of 95 counties. Yet for years, it has been run by “Rockefeller” Romney-style Republicans, from Bill Haslam and Bill Lee as governors to Bob Corker and Lamar Alexander as senators. However, with Alexander retiring, Trump endorsed the most liberal candidate from day one – Bill Hagerty. He was a delegate for Jeb Bush, of all people, during the 2016 presidential primary. Hagerty is also a longtime friend and adviser to … Mitt Romney!

Trump seems to have a penchant for endorsing the most globalist candidates and, of all things, touting them as being “tough on the border and crime,” which are actually the last issues these people will be tough on.

This is not even an incumbent race. Why is Trump so quick to endorse in an open seat against conservatives so early on and on behalf of the very swamp he promised to drain?

Additionally, there are plenty of races where MAGA candidates are likely dissuaded from even entering the race, knowing that Trump will reflexively back the candidates McConnell and McCarthy want, thereby giving them no chance to even mount a campaign.

If every time a RINO feels threatened by a viable challenge, they know that they can count on Trump’s help, this is not only failing to drain the swamp, it’s propping it up against conservatives.

When and how are we ever going to nominate better Republicans?

It’s truly breathtaking to observe the wide gulf between the ideological consistency of members of both parties. Even Democrats deep in “enemy territory” never meaningfully dissent from their party. Both Doug Jones from Alabama and Joe Manchin from West Virginia voted against Kavanaugh and for impeachment. Trump carried those states by 28 and 41 points respectively. Yet the Democrats from those states are dyed-in-the-wool liberals on immigration, health care, transgendersim, judicial nominees, and pretty much anything the Left wants to do.

Contrast that with Republicans, and you’d be hard-pressed to find more than a handful of elected officials even in the friendliest of states who adhere to the conservative position on even a few issues. None of this has changed during the era of Trump, and now, with him lending his golden reputation among primary voters to swamp candidates, they have an easier time getting elected and even re-elected after betraying us.

Conservatives have a choice to make. As February turns into March, each week will bring with it a new act of the drama that is the Democratic primaries. The drama will have no bearing on conservatives, nor can any conservative figure wield any influence over that outcome. The real question is this: Will Republicans finally build a bench of elected officials who will provide a bold contrast to whichever radical emerges from the Democrat primaries?

Time is running out, and the primary schedule is very compact. It’s time to get to work or consign the Republican Party to Mitt Romney and his numerous well-funded allies. (For more from the author of “Will Romney’s Betrayal Finally Get Conservatives Focused on Our Own Priorities?” please click HERE)

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How Trump Can Turn His SOTU Smackdown of Sanctuary Cities Into Action

The State of the Union was certainly very uplifting, unifying, and even quite moderately non-ideological on policy. That is, until the president began discussing sanctuary cities. That’s when he took the gloves off and served some red meat with the veggies.

Facts in hand, the president exposed for the nation the dastardly deeds of sanctuary cities in hard numbers. “Last year, our brave ICE officers arrested more than 120,000 criminal aliens charged with nearly 10,000 burglaries, 5,000 sexual assaults, 45,000 violent assaults, and 2,000 murders,” revealed Trump. “Tragically, there are many cities in America where radical politicians have chosen to provide sanctuary for these criminal illegal aliens. In Sanctuary Cities, local officials order police to release dangerous criminal aliens to prey upon the public, instead of handing them over to ICE to be safely removed.”

I watched Nancy Pelosi shake her head behind the president as he was uttering these words. What exactly what she shaking her head at? Which point does she contest? That these cities and states, like her home state of California, release dangerous illegal aliens arrested for murder and rape? Just this week, Orange County Sheriff Don Barnes announced that 1,500 illegal aliens with detainers were released last year. Of those inmates, 238 were re-arrested in for committing new preventable crimes, including assault and battery, rape, and robbery.

In other words, the president got them around the neck. I’ve always said, Democrats cannot withstand a sustained national focus on their policy against federal immigration law, because it’s truly indefensible. These are exclusively illegal aliens who have committed additional crimes that land them in local jails. No sane voter wants this.

Speaking on behalf of the thousands of unnoticed victims of illegal aliens, the president highlighted an angel family sitting in the gallery. For months, Democrats kept focusing like a laser beam on the needs, wants, and desires of illegal aliens at the border. What about the American victims? The president gave them their recognition.

The president brought up the case of Junior “Gustavo” Garcia-Ruiz, an illegal alien repeat offender, who was charged with the murder of Rocky Jones in Tulare County, California, last year. He was in jail just days before allegedly going on a killing spree and committing at least 11 crimes in a 24-hour period. Yet despite six prior arrests, the ICE detainer was ignored.

One of the victims of his bloody rampage was a 51-year-old American named Rocky Jones. Rocky was at a gas station when this vile criminal fired eight bullets at him from close range, murdering him in cold blood. Rocky left behind a devoted family, including his brothers who loved him more than anything. One of his grieving brothers is here with us tonight. Jody, would you please stand? Jody, our hearts weep for your loss — and we will not rest until you have justice.

The president then called on Congress to pass legislation giving victims of sanctuary cities the right to sue government officials who violate federal immigration laws.

“The United States of America should be a sanctuary for law-abiding Americans — not criminal aliens!” thundered Trump to rousing applause.

Now it’s time for the president to make this a reality and allow the eloquence of his speech to lead to successful action. Sanctuaries might be evil and unpopular, but at present, they are winning. Their numbers have doubled over the past three years, and they’re driving ICE’s removal numbers into the ground.

What was evident last night is that Trump has the greatest bully pulpit ever. If he delivered a major address with angel families right before a budget vote and demanded the defunding of sanctuary cities, it would place the Democrats in a very tough position. He’d be wise to make this issue his priority headed into the election and do the following:

Direct the U.S. attorneys to bring up charges against sanctuary politicians in their respective jurisdictions for violating federal immigration law by harboring illegal aliens and restricting information from ICE.

The president should cut off all grant programs to sanctuaries and refuse to sign any budget bill that doesn’t back
up his action.

The president called on Congress last night to pass the Justice for Victims of Sanctuary Cities Act (S.2059), which allows victims of sanctuaries to sue malfeasant politicians in federal court. He needs to twist arms to get this done, but also must first fix one provision in the bill that actually weakens current law.

The president should direct the Social Security Administration and the IRS to work with the DHS to end identity theft by illegal aliens. They have the power to do this without new legislation. This would essentially end the ability of sanctuaries to harbor them.

The president should enforce the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations (VCCR) that requires police to ascertain the country of citizenship in order to notify consular officials that a national of their country has been detained. This way we will know every illegal alien who is detained by police for an infraction.

The president needs to give a speech revealing that there are three million known illegal aliens with criminal records in this country and that we only have 5,000 deportation officers to deal with them. The failure to secure more funding for ICE amid a record spending spree for liberal functions of government has been one of the greatest failures of the first term.

Every day the president should tweet out more cases of needless deaths from sanctuaries harboring repeat violent criminals who are here illegally.

The president should do all of this in the lead-up to the September budget deadline. Rather than running away from a budget fight over criminal aliens right before an election, he should embrace that opportunity to win the election based on this issue. He has the ability to use the bully pulpit to its fullest extent. According to a Harvard-Harris poll, 72 percent of overall voters and 76 percent of suburban voters oppose issuing driver’s licenses to illegal aliens. Imagine how many more oppose harboring dangerous criminal aliens. There is no greater issue over which to force a budget fight.

Overall, there were good policy suggestions in the speech, and there were liberal ones inspired by his more liberal advisers. They already got their stuff enacted in the budget bills and defense bill: an amnesty for Liberian illegal aliens, a “second step” act for criminals, paid federal leave for already overpaid federal workers, more low-skilled worker visas, and 4,000 more visas for unvetted Afghans. Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump have gotten their fair share of priorities. Now is the time to put effective action behind the conservative elements of the president’s eloquent speech.

The lesson of last night, headed into a second term, is that the eloquent speeches are needed most at the times when the policy outcomes are fully in play. (For more from the author of “How Trump Can Turn His Sotu Smackdown of Sanctuary Cities Into Action” please click HERE)

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Bernie the Fake Populist

One can essentially internalize Bernie Sanders’ entire political message with a wind-up toy playing the following message: “I’m for ‘the little guy’ against the evil rich people and their politically connected cronies. I’ll fight the people who push policies beneficial to Wall Street and well-connected lobbyists and detrimental to ordinary Americans.”

With such a populist message, it’s not hard to see why young brains full of mush would be drawn to his candidacy. However, those people need to realize that it’s Bernie’s very own policies that have created these monopolies for “millionahhs” and “billionahhhs.”

While there is merit to some of the socialist populist diagnosis of the flawed and corrupt structure inherent in our political class, the socialists have the wrong prescription to fix the broken political system. And in fact, his version of populism – de facto venture socialism – is nothing more than warmed-over government largesse, which has driven the very sort of cronyism he inveighs against on a regular basis. Only free market and constitutional populism, which eliminates the ability of the federal government to pick winners and losers in the first place, will foster the fairest and most prosperous economy for both Wall Street and Main Street.

Health care

Bernie Sanders helped perpetuate and exacerbate a system that cuts out the consumer from health care and places third-party middlemen in charge of our health care. United Health has enjoyed a monopoly on the insurance system since Sanders supported Obamacare, announcing a record $14 billion in profit for 2019. That’s a 15.5 percent increase from 2018. The company’s annual revenue has nearly doubled since the enactment of Obamacare.

Meanwhile, the regulatory and subsidy structure of Obamacare, Medicare, and Medicaid has created a monopoly for health care conglomerates to merge and acquire other businesses, essentially charting us toward the extinction of private medical practice in America. “Medicare for All” will simply take everything that is wrong already with the system and put every remaining person under the control of this monopoly of a few “private” health care administrators and insurers. Socialism pays well … to those who administer it.

Banking

Although both authentic conservatives and “principled” socialists share the same disdain for government-sponsored handouts to big banks, the banking industry in itself was not the source of the economic downturn of 2008, and trash-talking banks as an end to itself, as Bernie does, will not usher in an era of prosperity.

Social engineering policies supported by Sanders, such as Bill Clinton’s National Homeownership Strategy, coupled with the officious interventions of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, created the entire culture that coerced banks to underwrite risky mortgages in order to please the central planners in Washington. It was these greedy government-sponsored entities that bought up almost all of the subprime mortgage securities. It was these government policies and agencies that gambled with taxpayer money and got bailed out by the government when their risky bets threatened to blow up our financial system.

In fact, it was the prized legislation of Bernie’s ideological twin, Elizabeth Warren – the Dodd-Frank bill – that created the Financial Stability Oversight Council, a government agency that can completely bypass the bankruptcy process and bail out companies deemed too big to fail. Dodd-Frank is something like the Obamacare of the financial industry and is another example of how the arsonists in the political class dress up as firefighters to solve the problems they helped create. The fact that this law was named after two politicians who embodied this big government collusion with the big banks is quite fitting.

Sanders and Warren are correct to assert that banking lobbyists have too much power in Washington. But the way to reduce their power is to eliminate government’s ability to pick winners and losers instead of empowering them to continue growing the government/Wall Street cronyist complex.

Picking winners and losers

Like all hard-core socialists, Sanders is content with government handouts to big business so long as they are presented in the form of a subsidy. He champions energy subsidies for green energy cronies who don’t pay taxes. He supports the ethanol mandate, which uses the boot of government to enrich a small subset of corporate farmers, while increasing the cost of food on families by as much as $2,000 per year. Small independent oil refineries are put out of business as a result of the socialist ethanol mandate and the big oil companies, which create a speculating trading business in the ethanol credits his policies created.

Sanders advocates draconian environmental regulations on energy production that actually works and a complete suspension of fracking that would have precluded the recent decline in energy prices. He opposes policies that will ramp up production and exportation of energy, which would lower prices even further for American consumers on a permanent basis and make us independent from the extortion of Russia and the Middle East.

What about big agriculture? Bernie Sanders voted for the 2018 farm bill, which creates subsidies for wealthy landowners and corporations to monopolize farming and box out family farms. According to the American Enterprise Institute, “50 percent of farms in the lower 70 percent of the crop sales distribution received no subsidy or program payments.” Bernie loves taxing the rich, but he loves subsidizing the rich even more. He hates hard-earned income when it causes inequality, but he loves subsidy inequality. Sanders despises income inequality when it’s earned fair and square, but he has no problem with subsidy inequality when it’s a handout, distorts markets, and contributes to endless debt.

One of the most glaring examples of Sanders supporting crony capitalism is his vote for the internet sales tax. The so-called Marketplace Fairness Act was pushed by K Street and the big brick- and-mortar retailers to create an interstate online tax cartel. This version of taxation without representation will punitively hurt small businesses, consumers, and low-tax states – all to grow government and benefit big business.

Sanders once promised that “Donald Trump and his billionaire friends under my policies are going to pay a hell of a lot more in taxes.” Indeed, under his plan for universal internal sales tax collection, many more Americans beyond Trump will pay “a hell of a lot more in taxes.” While the Supreme Court has since greenlit states to collect taxes on internet sales across state lines, Sanders as president will support legislation to make it a reality everywhere.

Indeed, there is nothing novel, compassionate, or populist about the Sanders worldview. It was summed up by Reagan long ago: “If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.”

Constitutional populism as the solution

In order to encourage true economic growth for everyone without dividing America into classes, we need to slash regulations for everyone and abolish subsidies for everyone.

The total cost of federal regulations in 2018 reached $1.9 trillion, which amounts to a $14,615 hidden tax per family every year, greater than any federal tax burden. According to the Competitive Enterprise Institute, this amounts to 20 percent of the average family budget of $51,000. The $1.9 trillion number is as much as the total receipts from corporate and personal income taxes combined. If we eliminated gratuitous and costly regulations and implemented congressional sunset powers over new regulations, both families and corporations would save more money, which in turn, creates more jobs, raises wages, and lowers the cost of living.

Finally, it’s impossible to ignore the issue of illegal immigration when discussing the “little guy.” Nothing embodies the worst of government for the rich and powerful to the detriment of ordinary Americans more than the elitist open borders/amnesty agenda. Illegal immigration has had a devastating effect on American workers, taxpayers, health care, education, and welfare – all to enrich big corporations and lobbyists who want to use lawlessness to artificially drive down wages.

Sadly, socialist populist leaders like Sanders have bought into the illegal immigrant-first agenda – hook, line and sinker. Sanders would wholesale decriminalize border crossings. Remember, there are 88 nations where the per capita GDP is lower than that of Guatemala, which stands at $4,471 as of 2017. That is likely well over one billion people living in similar or worse conditions than those coming to our border today, primarily from Central America. That would crush American workers and taxpayers and flood our communities with drugs, crime, social problems, and chaos in the schools. But Bernie’s wealthy donors would love it.

If Bernie Sanders is really concerned about wage growth in this country, he should join conservatives in the effort to restore the rule of law and prioritize the concerns of American workers and taxpayers ahead of the special interests and lobbyists. He should join in the conservative effort to protect the welfare system and Social Security from being illegally accessed by those encouraged to migrate here illegally by big business.

Ideally, there would be a lot of common ground to plow in a populist alliance between conservatives and liberals. But that would require courage on the part of liberals to buck the dogma of their party on critical issues, not just on some strategies – something Bernie Sanders is clearly been unwilling to do. (For more from the author of “Bernie the Fake Populist” please click HERE)

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Losing the Super Bowl Is the Least of San Francisco’s Problems

The San Francisco 49ers were well on their way to winning the Lombardi trophy more than halfway through the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl, but they gave the game away and wound up losing big. In many ways, the Super Bowl is a metaphor for how San Franciso politicians are taking a beautiful city with a lot of potential and running it into the ground … a ground full of feces.

Thanks to the suspension of law enforcement and downgrading of many crimes, there’s a breakdown of public order in the Bay Area with theft, vagrancy, homelessness, and drugs becoming rampant. Last week, police announced there was a 300 percent increase in car thefts last year in the Diamond Heights neighborhood of San Francisco. At a town hall event, one victim described a break-in while he and his family were sitting in the actual car.

Who says crime doesn’t pay? In San Francisco, it certainly does pay for criminals. Who’s paying for it? Non-criminal taxpayers. Say what you want about criminals, but like any market force, they are very logical and respond to the incentives and disincentives placed before them. In San Francisco, they understand that they simply will not face prison time, even for repeat offenses.

The theft epidemic is also taking a toll on local businesses, as shoplifting becomes rampant. San Francisco also leads the nation in “porch piracy,” with burglars stealing packages off home porches. The number two and three cities for porch piracy are Los Angeles and Sacramento, respectively. A California coincidence?

In addition to the black market gangs that openly steal retail merchandise and sell it on the black market knowing that there will be no consequences, there are now “sophisticated network of international dealers who cross the border to buy stolen goods.”

But fear not, taxpayers of San Francisco, your newly elected district attorney, Chesa Boudin, promised to crack down on these criminal networks.

Do you really think a single criminal in the area doesn’t realize Boudin is really on their side? Boudin, who was raised by Weather Underground terrorists Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn after his parents were convicted for murder in New York City in the 1980s, spent his life defending criminals and has promised to dismantle the criminal justice system as well as immigration enforcement. He is now working on criminalizing any cooperation with federal immigration agents.

Forget about theft and car break-ins, Boudin won’t prosecute even violent criminals. Last month, Boudin decided to drop charges against Jamaica Hampton, a man who attacked cops with a glass bottle after they confronted him for allegedly committing a burglary. Boudin is instead investigating the cops for shooting Hampton when he smashed a cop over the head with the bottle. This comes as Boudin announced he will mimic New York’s outrageous policy of abolishing bail. He has also fired law-and-order-minded prosecutors from the homicide and gang units who don’t share his public defender mindset. Yes, that will really show those criminals!

Just how sensitive are criminals to disincentives? As Kent Scheidegger points out, neighboring San Mateo County is much stricter on auto thefts and often pursues prison time for repeat offenders. Even though the urban area flows seamlessly across the county border from San Francisco and it’s often hard to tell where the line is, the criminals will make sure to commit the burglaries on the San Francisco side of the line.

Overall, the rate of burglary in San Francisco is twice the national average, while the rate of theft is three times the national average.

Rather than the politicians dealing with the problem of deteriorating public order, homeowners in the Bay Area are being forced to pay for the cleanup from the homeless encampments. One community in Alameda County was forced to pay $20,000 to clean up one of these encampments, even though their tax dollars are supposed to go toward enforcing public order laws so that this won’t be a problem to begin with. (For more from the author of “Losing the Super Bowl Is the Least of San Francisco’s Problems” please click HERE)

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Trump’s Updated Immigration Moratorium List: A Good Start

In what is perhaps more important news to the future of our nation than impeachment, the White House announced late on Friday an updated “travel ban,” with a new list of countries from which immigration has been suspended due to national security concerns.

Pursuant to a new DHS global assessment report of how carefully countries share identity-management and national security information with us, the administration has determined a need to suspend immigration visas to nationals of Burma (Myanmar), Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Nigeria, Sudan, and Tanzania. The acting DHS secretary has also determined a need to continue the suspension of visas from the countries on the existing list – Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, North Korea, Venezuela, and Yemen.

According to the White House, the determination was based on three criteria: “Whether a foreign government engages in reliable identity-management practices and shares relevant information; whether a foreign government shares national security and public-safety information; and whether a country otherwise poses a national security or public-safety risk.”

The new proclamation indicates that the DHS report recommended “implementing suspensions and limitations on entry for certain nationals of twelve additional countries,” more than the six that were ultimately restricted. It appears that senior administration officials felt that some of the other countries either made improvements to their data sharing in recent months or were left off the list because the U.S. “has experienced a recent deepening of diplomatic ties that generally mark increased cooperation toward achieving key regional and global United States foreign policy goals.”

The new ban is slated to take effect on February 22.

This is a good start for Trump to finally fulfill his campaign promise of ratcheting down immigration from dangerous parts of the world. However, there are some glaring omissions and inconsistencies in the proposal:

1) The ban on these six countries is only for immigrant visas. Nationals of these countries are still eligible for all non-immigrant visas, including student visas. We have about 13,400 foreign students from Nigeria. In the case of Sudan and Tanzania, the only form of immigrant visa that is suspended is the diversity visa lottery. Sudan is embroiled in an Islamic civil war. And according to the White House, all these countries have “deficiencies in sharing terrorist, criminal, or identity information,” thereby creating “an unacceptable likelihood that information reflecting the fact that a visa applicant is a threat to national security or public safety may not be available at the time the visa or entry is approved.” If that is the case, then why is the ban so limited?

2) Nationals of these countries can still apply for waivers. As we’ve already seen from the existing countries on the list, 48 percent of all applications for visas from those countries were approved, totaling 42,000 issuances over the past two years.

3) Nobody in government can say with a straight face that the Chinese share any meaningful information with us. Border agents have told me this firsthand about processing Chinese nationals at the border. China poses the greatest espionage, counter-intelligence, and trade secret theft threats of any country. And immigration is its biggest weapon. The director of national intelligence warned in the latest Worldwide Threat Assessment, “China’s intelligence services will exploit the openness of American society, especially academia and the scientific community, using a variety of means,” Yet we bring in more immigrants (roughly 80,000) and long-term foreign students (roughly 370,000) from China than from any other country.

4) The 800-pound gorilla in the room, based on Trump’s campaign promises, is left off the list. Those are the countries from which there is the strongest element of jihadism and a sharia supremacist mindset among the population. Does anyone really believe we can vet the hearts and minds of those from Iraq and Afghanistan? Just over the weekend, an Iraqi immigrant was arrested in Arizona because of an outstanding warrant in Iraq, where he is accused of murdering policemen on behalf of al Qaeda. Yet our government is putting our “diplomatic relations” there ahead of homeland security concerns.

More fundamentally, as I noted regarding our government’s response to the Pensacola shooting and Saudi military trainees, what ever happened to Trump’s promise of ideological vetting? Sure, we have great relations with countries like Saudi Arabia and Egypt, but what about the people living there? They might not have a criminal record, but many of them could harbor jihadist sympathies, as we saw with the Pensacola shooter, Mohammed Alshamrani.

This paragraph from the proclamation should disturb Trump supporters:

In his report, the Acting Secretary of Homeland Security recognized a close cooperative relationship between the United States and the democratically elected government of Iraq, the strong United States diplomatic presence in Iraq, the significant presence of United States forces in Iraq, and Iraq’s commitment to combating the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). The Acting Secretary of Homeland Security considered another similarly situated country and determined that, for reasons similar to those present in Iraq, entry restrictions and limitations would not be appropriate.

Really? This is a pro-Iran government. This is the most vivid illustration of the backward priorities of our national security leaders – send our military to referee Islamic civil wars and then use that as a pretense for bringing in more immigrants to our homeland.

It’s clear the administration is trying to sidestep the issue of ideological vetting, as well as avoid the suspension from countries where the number of immigrants has been significant. In 2018, we only had 838 from Kyrgyzstan and 2,428 from Eritrea. We bring in more from Tanzania (3,186) and Sudan (3,658), but only diversity visas were suspended from those countries. The only countries on the list with significant numbers are Burma (8,182) and Nigeria (13,952). Most of the Burmese are refugees. We’ve admitted a huge number of Burmese refugees in recent years, roughly 170,000 since 2007.

However, if you look at some of the countries with the most jihadists, we continue to bring in tremendous numbers: Iraq (14,351), Afghanistan (12,935), Bangladesh (15,717), Pakistan (15,426), and Egypt (9,668) to name just a few countries. And while we get very few immigrants from Saudi Arabia, we continue to bring in roughly 40,000 foreign students from there, and now will evidently continue the military training program as well.

Very tellingly, when explaining the rationale for the suspension from Kyrgyzstan, the White House notes the presence of “an elevated risk, relative to other countries in the world, of terrorist travel to the United States.” But doesn’t that apply to several dozen other countries not mentioned? Why pick the one with less than 1,000 annual immigrants?

Clearly, the lawyers and bureaucrats in the administration wanted to avoid making this about vetting out jihadist sympathies and more about technocratic criteria of information-sharing. They also wanted to keep the numbers of those affected to a minimum. However, it doesn’t really speak to the prevalent threats that mass migration from many other countries poses. Given the sweeping victory in the Supreme Court on the president’s power to exclude, the administration could have been more aggressive in its approach.

If this is just the first step, then it’s a good one. But if this will set a precedent of foreclosing any ideological vetting, it won’t effectively keep out most terrorists, spies, or security threats. (For more from the author of “Trump’s Updated Immigration Moratorium List: A Good Start” please click HERE)

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WATCH: Trump’s Compelling Super Bowl Ad Ignores Two Key Economic Realities

Super Bowl viewers hoping for a break from partisan bickering and politics are in for a disappointment. Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg bought a commercial for the widely-watched event and decided to use his chance to reach millions of Americans to push misinformation and fearmonger in favor of his anti-gun agenda. Meanwhile, President Trump tapped into his war chest to run an ad of his own, making the case for his reelection.

Trump spent $11 million on the commercial, which emphasizes his strong economic record. It highlights the record-low unemployment rate we’ve seen during this administration, as well as burgeoning wage growth and strong economic prospects for African Americans and Hispanics. The president makes the case that voters should back him because “the best is yet to come.”

As my Washington Examiner colleague Tiana Lowe noted, it’s a strong ad with the right focus. Trump is wise politically to focus on the economy, rather than repeat his 2018 midterm mistake and make 2020 about anti-immigration sentiment. And the president absolutely does deserve credit for the successful economic results we’ve seen in part due to his tax cuts, deregulatory agenda, and pro-business policies. But, as most political ads do, Trump’s commercial leaves out a few key economic realities that voters ought to be aware of.

For one, Trump has completely, utterly failed to reign in the national debt and the annual budget deficit.

On the campaign trail in 2016, he promised to eliminate the debt entirely within eight years. (A very, very unrealistic promise.) Instead, we’re back up to $1 trillion annual deficits, bloated budget deals, and woeful future fiscal projects from the Congressional Budget Office. This isn’t entirely Trump’s fault, as both parties’ leaderships in Congress deserve serious demerits for such reckless spending as well, yet, it’s a blight on his tenure nonetheless, especially in light of the unrealistic promises he made. (Read more from “Trump’s Compelling Super Bowl AD Ignores Two Key Economic Realities” HERE)

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