Disturbing: Food stamp fraud rampant: GAO report
The Associated Press reports on the latest in a round of aggressive tactics taken by the White House to try and drum up support for their gun control legislation:
WASHINGTON (AP) — Vice President Joe Biden wants pastors, rabbis and nuns to tell their flocks that enacting gun control is the moral thing to do. But another vote may have to wait until Congress wraps up work on an immigration overhaul.
Biden met for two-and-a-half hours Monday with more than a dozen leaders from various faith communities — Christian, Jewish, Muslim and Sikh, to name a few. Both Biden and the faith leaders encouraged each other not to give up on what has been an arduous and thus far fruitless effort by Biden and President Barack Obama to pass new gun laws in the wake of December’s schoolhouse shooting in Connecticut.
Around a large, circular table in a conference room on the White House grounds, Biden waxed optimistic about prospects for passing a bill, according to four participants who spoke to The Associated Press after the meeting. Biden’s chief of staff, Bruce Reed, joined the group, as did a handful of Obama aides who work on faith-based outreach. The meeting closed with a meditation and a prayer for action.
But don’t expect a vote any time soon.
“The conversation presumed the vote would happen first on immigration,” said Rabbi David Saperstein, who directs the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism. “That seemed to be the back-and-forth on both sides — that immigration was a key priority right now. When that vote took place, it would be an opportunity to refocus on this.”
A far-reaching immigration overhaul is in the early stages of advancing through the Senate. Obama said last week he’s optimistic it can be completed this year.
Although momentum on gun control stalled in the Senate last month, Biden has insisted the issue is very much alive, and has been meeting regularly with gun violence victims and law enforcement to build support for a second go at legislation to expand background checks, improve mental health care and take other steps to reduce gun violence. Monday’s session reflects an attempt to broaden the coalition calling for new gun laws to include a wide array of religious groups — including evangelicals and conservative faith communities.
Let’s pause for just a moment to think about what the reaction would be had this been VP Dick Cheney meeting with “religious leaders” to get them to reaffirm their pro-life commitments and pass on the message to their congregants. Yeah, we know how that would work out.
In all seriousness, this whole debate has become a joke – and not a funny one – like national debates on gun control often do. They’re almost always one-sided, with the mainstream media helping their liberal columnist allies and Democrat politicos paint the narrative that most gun owners, are big, bad, evil, ugly, trigger happy – and want to shoot and hurt people the first chance they get. We all know the opposite is true, and we also know that the most recent proposed gun legislation efforts sadly would NOT have prevented the horrific murders in Newtown, Aurora, Virginia Tech, and elsewhere. But the idea is to put emotion-based arguments out there so the unsuspecting and well-intentioned don’t realize that the only thing said gun legislation does is to further restrict the second amendment rights of law abiding gun owners while ensuring that those who don’t give one little damn about any law will go about obtaining their weapon(s) of choice anyway they can get it (them). And then when the next gun massacre occurs, even more control will be the order of the day, and again – it will change very little, if anything at all.
I was watching ABC’s morning news program with George Stephanopoulos on Friday and the coverage there exemplified how the news media operates and why we can’t ever get anywhere on discussions about gun rights and gun control. The set up was how “some” Senators who voted against the recent “bipartisan” legislation on guns were being “targeted” in their home states by angry voters . Both Stephanopoulos and the “on scene” journalist reported that the Senators they were featuring (Ayotte and Flake) had caved to “pressure from pro-gun forces” – without ever once mentioning the pre-vote level of pressure they surely faced from the gun control lobby, now kicked into high gear thanks to former Rep. Gabby Giffords and her demagogue husband Mark Kelly. Giffords, incidentally, penned an op/ed a few weeks ago that urged moms across America to, essentially, stalk their Senators in grocery stores and tell them they’d lost their vote over this bill:
I am asking every reasonable American to help me tell the truth about the cowardice these senators demonstrated. I am asking for mothers to stop these lawmakers at the grocery store and tell them: You’ve lost my vote. I am asking activists to unsubscribe from these senators’ e-mail lists and to stop giving them money. I’m asking citizens to go to their offices and say: You’ve disappointed me, and there will be consequences.
Yes, Ms. Giffords – a stalking victim herself – urging voters to track down their Senators in stores in their states to tell them how they feel. New tone, anyone? In fact, some have even speculated that that op/ed didn’t sound like something Ms. Giffords would pen and more sounded like what Commander Kelly would say. Wouldn’t surprise me a bit to find out she signed off on it but that he wrote the bulk of it. The harsh tone of the op/ed, the insults to the opposition, not to mention the urging of citizens to stalk their elected representatives — none of that sounds at all like anything Gabby Giffords the aisle-crosser would advocate saying or doing.
But back to the ABC report, not only did it set a narrative that Ayotte and Flake “caved” to pro-gun forces because of the pressure while insinuating they felt no comparative pressure from the other side, but it also failed to note that there are DEMOCRAT Senators who also voted against the bill who are facing backlash in their competitive states. Where were their cameras? Furthermore, don’t you just love how the MSM always frames issues so that if a Republican votes a certain way it’s due to “pressure and campaign contributions” but when Democrats vote a certain why it’s due to “principle and the people”? Where is the fairness in that?
We will get NOWHERE on this issue as long as the left and their allies in the press continue to use such deliberately deceptive tactics, insisting on advancing emotion-based arguments in an effort to try and “win” the debate, instead of having substantive, candid discussions that bring up inconvenient facts about gun ownership and gun free zones that they don’t want to hear. You know what they say: Never let the facts get in the way of a good ol’ fashioned rant. That’s pretty much the left’s motto in a nutshell – and for the last several decades, we as a society have seen the slow but steady erosion of our rights because of it. It’s time for that to change – in church, in school, in the home, and beyond.