IntroductionI have tried to avoid discussing current events on my blogs. I prefer to use my Twitter account (@BennyTheKite) for that purpose, but this blog, one of seven that I author, will focus on political science. Current events are often a good illustration of the principles of political science, but I will try to avoid simply making comments about current events on my blogs.
I have discussed other current events on my blogs, including flooding in Colorado, written as literary fiction, the riot in Ferguson, Missouri and even a battle in California over a requirement that adult film actors use condoms, but besides criticizing a weak president, my goal for this page is to highlight a problem in the relationship between this weak (or even a deliberately harmful president) with other elected officials, such as governors and mayors. The relationship between elected officials is always a legitimate topic for political scientists.
In order to look objectively at the proper relationship between mayors, governors, and presidents in the United States, one must look at whatever documents, if any, determine the relationship between them, using whatever tools we have available, including the basic rules of English grammar.
We are a nation of laws, and our leaders must obey themFor the United States, our Constitution is the governing document. Article 1 defines the structure and the power of Congress. Article 2 defines the structure and the power of the President. Article 3 defines the power of United States judges. Each branch of this three-branch government has some ability to limit the power of the other two branches.
This was done deliberately as a reaction to the excessive authority of the British king that sent people here to colonize the land and to return products to Britain for sale there. That was his original purpose, but he failed to give the first Americans enough autonomy to complete his mission. Even though transatlantic travel, using wooden sailing ships, was slow and a high risk to human life, he still insisted on sending uniformed troops to enforce his harsh regulations, including the requirement that Americans offer their own homes as lodging for those British troops. That's why the Bill of Rights to the U.S. Constitution included a prohibition on this practice. Please read the text of the Third Amendment if you're in any doubt on this matter.
No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
Governors and PresidentsThe U.S. Constitution was written by representatives of the first thirteen of these colonies. Up until the Declaration of Independence declared that we were a sovereign nation, independent of Great Britain, each of these colonies had a governor who was sent and approved by England to be the highest legal authority for that colony. After we declared our independence, and after we fought and won the American Revolutionary War, governors were chosen by the citizens of each colony to lead them and to represent their interests in the new Continental Congress.
Presidential power, as defined by the U.S. Constitution. is limited. Presidents were never meant to be dictators, and in fact, presidents are prevented from being dictators by a number of the provisions in the Constitution. The 10th Amendment, part of the Bill of Rights, says this very explicitly.
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
Presidential power, defined grammaticallyLet's examine the one-sentence Tenth Amendment closely, using the standard rules of English grammar. It is a relatively simple sentence. If a simple sentence is phrased subject-verb-object, then this sentence fits that definition very well.
- Subject - "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states"
- Transitive Verb - "are reserved"
- A preposition - "to"
- object - "the states respectively, or to the people"
As described by this webpage about basic English grammar, a preposition is
Used to indicate the place, person, or thing that someone or something moves toward, or the direction of something.The preposition "to" is one of three common prepositions in the English language. The web page offers this as one example of a preposition.
The package was mailed to Mr. Kim yesterday.It is easy to see the similarity between the previous sentence and the following abbreviated form of the 10th amendment.
The powers not delegated to the United States ... are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.Please don't miss the hidden inference. The first sentence, about the package mailed to Mr. Kim, assumes the existence of a package that was mailed yesterday to Mr. Kim, and likewise, the 10th amendment assumes the existence of powers that the U.S. President does not have, as a matter of Constitutional Law, which is the highest, the most important law in the United States.
ConclusionsThere is one unmistakable conclusion from this grammatical analysis - There are some powers that the U.S. President does not have, because they have been "reserved to the states respectively, or to the people." In fact, the 10th amendment states that the United States does not have these powers. That means that the President doesn't have them, the two-house U.S. Congress doesn't have them, and the U.S. Court system doesn't have them, either.
One of the powers that the president doesn't have is the power to make laws. This is the entire text of Article 1, Section 1 of the Constitution.
All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.Legislative power is the power to make laws or to make changes to existing laws. The U.S. President, whoever he is, doesn't have any of those powers, because all of the power to make or to change Unites States law has been given to the United States Congress by the United States Constitution.
The April 8th letter to the GovernorA letter was mailed to the Governor of North Carolina on April 8, 2016 by Stephen D. Mull, whose title is the Lead Coordinator for Iran Nuclear Implementation. It was in response to a law that was passed by the North Carolina legislature, which had the authority to do so under the North Carolina State Constitution, and signed by the North Carolina Governor, who also had the authority to do so under that same North Carolina State Constitution.
This is the first sentence of this letter:
This past January the United States and its negotiating partners marked the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), a historic arrangement between the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Russia, China, and Iran that will verifiably ensure that Iran cannot obtain a nuclear weapon and that its nuclear program is and will remain exclusively peaceful.
Conclusion number 1As a sovereign nation, the United States has the Constitutional authority to negotiate agreements with other sovereign nations, subject to the requirement that treaties must have the approval of two-thirds of the U.S. Senate.
Link to my March 26, 2013 essay Three bad United Nations treaties. It mentions the Law of the Sea Treaty, the Arms Trade Treaty, and the International Communications Treaty.
Link to my November 6, 2013 essay The tricky treaty trap. It emphasizes the requirement that even if a United States President agrees with the terms of a treaty, it cannot be enforced unless two-thirds of the United States Senate has approved it.
Conclusion number 2As a sovereign state, North Carolina has the authority of the U.S. Constitution and its' own state constitution to pass and implement laws for the benefit of its' own citizens.
Conclusion number 3The last paragraph of the same April 8th letter begins with these two sentences.
Some states have adopted laws designed to incentivize Iran to change its behavior in certain ways. If that is the case in your state, I would urge you to consider whether the implementation of the JCPOA, which verifiably ensures that Iran's nuclear program is and will remain exclusively peaceful, addresses the underlying concerns with Iran articulated in your state's law.Mr. Mull, who wrote this letter to the Governor of North Carolina, was acting completely within his power as a U.S. citizen and as an international negotiator by asking the governor "to consider whether the implementation of the JCPOA ... addresses the underlying concerns with Iran articulated in your state's law."
However, Mr. Mull accepted the right of the North Carolina legislature to pass the law, and he accepted the right of the North Carolina Governor to sign it when he asked the Governor "to consider whether the implementation of the JCPOA ... addresses the underlying concerns with Iran articulated in your state's law."
Conclusion number 4The governor, likewise, was acting completely within his power as a U.S. citizen and as a governor when he replied in a letter dated April 26, 2016. These are the first three paragraphs of that letter.
Today, Governor Pat McCrory rejected the Obama administration’s request for North Carolina to reverse its state-imposed ban on investments in Iran.
“Under President Obama’s questionable Iran deal, billions have already been paid or released to Iran’s regime with little to show for it,” said Governor McCrory. “So long as I am governor, North Carolina will not subsidize a regime which remains the world’s lead sponsor of terrorism. It’s time for Washington, D.C. to put the safety, security and best interests of North Carolinians and Americans first.”
Last year, Governor McCrory signed the bipartisan Iran Divestment Act of 2015, which prohibited the N.C. Retirement System, state agencies and local governments from using funds to invest in Iran or contracting with businesses that have investment ties to Iran. The bill passed the General Assembly in a near-unanimous vote and was signed by Governor McCrory on June 29, 2015. According to Bloomberg News, more than two dozen states have state divestment laws targeting Iran.
The May 4th letter to the GovernorThe Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice sent a letter to Governor McCrory of North Carolina. This is the first paragraph:
This letter is to inform you that the Department of Justice has determined that, as a result of compliance with and implementation of North Carolina House Bill 2 ("H.B.2"), both you and the State of North Carolina (the "State")are in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §2000e, et seq. ("Title VII"). Specifically, the state is engaging in a pattern or practice of discrimination against transgender state employees and both of you, in your official capacity, and the state are engaging in a pattern or practice of resistance to the full enjoyment of Title VII rights by transgender employees of public agencies.As a matter of Constitutional Law, Executive-Branch agencies like the U.S. Department of Justice, including their Civil Rights Division, have the power to implement the laws that are passed by Congress, but if this agency, or any other agency believes that a state, or a governor, is violating a law, they are obligated to bring these accusations to a Federal judge who has the jurisdiction to rule on the matter.
The state of North Carolina is one of the states in a union of states. It was one of the thirteen original colonies that, as group, declared their independence from Great Britain on July 4, 1776.
As stated earlier, the North Carolina Legislature has the authority of the United States Constitution and its' own North Carolina State Constitution to pass laws that are for the benefit of its' own people.
The North Carolina Legislature did just that, by passing H.B.2, and the North Carolina Governor signed the bill, as every governor is entitled to do when his legislature passes any legislation. These are the first two paragraphs of a March 26, 2016 article in the Charlotte Observer.
In a one-day specially convened session Wednesday, North Carolina’s legislature passed a sweeping law that reverses a Charlotte ordinance that had extended some rights to people who are gay or transgender.
The law passed by the General Assembly and signed that same night by Gov. Pat McCrory goes further than a narrow elimination of Charlotte’s ordinance, which had generated the most controversy by a change that protected transgender people who use public restrooms based on their gender identity. The new law also nullified local ordinances around the state that would have expanded protections for the LGBT community.
The Governor's responseThese are the first three paragraphs of a May 9, 2016 article in the News and Observer, based in Charlotte, North Carolina.
RALEIGH - N.C. Gov. Pat McCrory has filed a lawsuit asking a federal court to determine that the controversial House Bill 2 is not illegally discriminatory.
“The Obama administration is bypassing Congress by attempting to rewrite the law and set restroom policies for public and private employers across the country, not just North Carolina,” McCrory said in a statement his office issued Monday morning. “This is now a national issue that applies to every state and it needs to be resolved at the federal level.”
McCrory said the legal action was intended to ensure that federal funding is not jeopardized by a U.S. Department of Justice determination last week that HB2 violates the Civil Rights Act. The department gave the governor until Monday to affirm that it will not enforce HB2.
These are the 9th through the 13th paragraphs of a May 9, 2016 article in Lifesite News.
In response to the DOJ's letter, sent last Wednesday, Gov. Pat McCrory first appealed for additional time, saying that he deserved more than “three business days” to weigh his response. The federal government refused, he said.
"The department’s position is a baseless and blatant overreach. This is an attempt to unilaterally rewrite long-established federal civil rights laws in a manner that is wholly inconsistent with the intent of Congress and disregards decades of statutory interpretation by the courts,” the state's legal brief says, citing numerous court precedents.
The Obama administration is merely trying to force by executive power what it has not been able to achieve through legislation, the state argues in today's legal filing.
“The overwhelming weight of legal authority recognizes that transgender status is not a protected class under Title VII,” the brief says.
“If the United States desires a new protected class under Title VII, it must seek such action by the United States Congress,” the state holds.
The Governor's press releaseThis section was added August 22, 2016.
Governor McCrory's office released a public statement about the issue on May 13, 2016. Here it is.
"President Obama's administration has instituted federally mandated edicts that affect employees as well as every parent and child within a public school system. This national bathroom, locker room and shower policy for almost every business, university and now K-12 school in our country changes generations of gender etiquette and privacy norms which parents, children and employees have expected in the most personal and private settings of their everyday lives.
"Most Americans, including this governor, believe that government is searching for a solution to a problem that has yet to be defined.
"Now, both the federal courts and the U.S. Congress must intercede to stop this massive executive branch overreach, which clearly oversteps constitutional authority.
"Both non-discrimination and privacy are basic tenets of our great country. States and local governments cannot have a myriad of different laws which cause confusion and inconsistent application.
"However, the executive branch of the federal government does not have the authority to be the final arbiter. We all must work together to seek answers and common sense clarification."
An opposing point of viewThis section was added August 22, 2016.
These are the first six paragraphs of a May 9, 2016 Los Angeles Times story. The link in the first sentence was in their story.
The Justice Department sued North Carolina on Monday to stop what it called discrimination against transgender individuals, raising the stakes in a cultural and legal battle that has ramifications for other states and the 2016 election.This story cannot be called objective journalism. As you can see for yourself in the quoted paragraphs, the viewpoint of the U.S. Attorney General, as she expressed them at a news conference, is featured in five of the first six paragraphs. Her words are quoted in two of those paragraphs. Another paragraph in this story quotes the letter that Vanita Gupta, who heads the department’s civil rights division, wrote to the North Carolina Governor.
U.S. Atty. Gen. Loretta Lynch personally announced the lawsuit, which argues that North Carolina’s so-called bathroom law violates parts of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other federal laws, and that the state is engaging in a “pattern or practice of sex discrimination.”
Lynch stepped in hours after North Carolina’s Republican governor, Pat McCrory, had sued the Justice Department to prevent it from blocking implementation of the state law, which requires public agencies to deny transgender people access to multiple-occupancy bathrooms and changing rooms consistent with their gender identity.
At a news conference, Lynch linked the dispute to past civil rights struggles over equal access to housing, water fountains and other facilities.
“This action is about a great deal more than just bathrooms,” she said. This is “about the respect we accord our fellow citizens and the laws that we … have enacted to protect them.”
She added, “This is not the first time we have seen discriminatory responses to historic moments of progress for our nation.”
In contrast, there are no quotes from the Governor of North Carolina, his press spokesman, or a press release. The only mention of the Governor's view, or the view of the North Carolina legislature, which passed the law in both of their houses, is when the Los Angeles Times reporter, with his editor's permission, wrote these three paragraphs.
In the state’s lawsuit against the department, it accuses the federal government of “baseless and blatant overreach” by trying to block the state from enforcing its law.Their article was written on May 9th, before the Governor published his press release on May 13th, but the story fails to show an attempt to find and write about the Governor's point of view.
“This is an attempt to unilaterally rewrite long-established federal civil rights laws in a manner that is wholly inconsistent with the intent of Congress and disregards decades of statutory interpretation by the courts,” says the lawsuit, which was filed in federal district court in Raleigh, the state capital.
The state law is strongly supported by social conservatives, and the dispute over gay and transgender rights may affect some down-ballot races in the 2016 election cycle.
Notice that this reporter has chosen to characterize this as "the dispute over gay and transgender rights" instead of the dispute over bathroom and shower room privacy. A truly objective reporter would allow both sides of an issue to state their own viewpoints. The "social conservatives" who are mentioned in these paragraphs are much more concerned with privacy and with protecting small children from sexual predators than with gay rights.
Governor McCrory's press release says that he, as a governor, is concerned that the president's mandate "... changes generations of gender etiquette and privacy norms which parents, children and employees have expected in the most personal and private settings of their everyday lives." You are welcome to disagree, but that is the typical viewpoint of a social conservative, and it is dishonest for a reporter at the Los Angeles Times or any other major newspaper to write a news story that changes this. If you do disagree with this viewpoint, you are a social liberal, not a social conservative.
It was precisely the danger of sexual predators that prompted the Boy Scouts, who are socially conservative, to prohibit open homosexuals from becoming scouts or scout leaders until a social liberal, like Robert Gates, formerly the U.S. Secretary of Defense, forced them to allow gay boys as scouts and gay adults as scout leaders.
Link to a July 28, 2015 CNN story that announced the policy change.
ConclusionsThe governor, because he is a governor, has the power to ask a Federal court to make a ruling on this difference of opinion between a U.S. Government agency (the Department of Justice) and his state, which he represents. His citizens are also represented in the North Carolina legislature, which passed the law that he signed.
The President, because he is a president and not a king or an emperor, does not have the power to force the Governor of North Carolina to abandon a law that the North Carolina legislature passed, using its' constitutional authority, and which the governor signed, using his own constitutional authority.
However, President Obama, because he has a pen and a phone, is welcome to use both of them, during the eight months that are left in his presidency, to ask members of the North Carolina legislature to sponsor new legislation that would make changes to the existing law.
A second governor helps the first oneThese are the first two paragraphs of a May 12, 2016 Washington D.C. Examiner news story. The link in the second paragraph was in their article.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is vowing to work with North Carolina to defend the state's "bathroom law."
"I am working with the governor of North Carolina, and we are going to fight back," Abbott, a former state attorney general, told delegates at the Texas Republican Convention in Dallas on Thursday.
|These are the third and fourth paragraphs of that same article. The link in the third paragraph was in their story.
The Justice Department has filed a lawsuit against the North Carolina law, which requires a transgender person to use the restroom facility that corresponds with their birth gender, not gender identity.
"Obama is turning bathrooms into courtroom issues," said Abbott, a Republican.
Other similar stories, arranged in chronological order
|The Texas Tribune, April 27, 2016||KGNS, an NBC affiliate, May 12, 2016|
|CNN Politics, May 15, 2016||Newsmax, May 17, 2016|
August 3, 2016 updateThese are the first paragraphs of a Reuters story dated today.
A Virginia school board may temporarily block a student who was born a girl from using the boys' bathroom while a legal fight over transgender rights proceeds on appeal, the U.S. Supreme Court said on Wednesday.I have some questions about this news story. The Supreme Court usually takes a vacation in July and August, yet this Reuters story was published on August 3rd, indicating a recent order from the Supreme Court. Is this really a recent order, or did a Reuters assignment editor miss this order when it was made months earlier? The date of the order isn't mentioned in the story. I will have to do some further research to find out.
The case is the first time the fight over transgender bathroom rights has reached the Supreme Court. The subject arrived in the heat of a U.S. presidential election in which the makeup of the court is a central issue.
In a brief order, the country's highest court put on hold an order from a lower court that had permitted the high school student to use the bathroom of his choice.
August 22, 2016 update, part 1A federal appeals court in Texas has made a ruling in a similar case, but that judge made his ruling on different grounds.
These are the first two paragraphs of an August 22, 2016 Bloomberg Politics story.
The Obama administration was barred by a judge from enforcing a directive that U.S. public schools allow transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms according to their gender identity.As I said in Part 2 of this essay, the wording of the first sentence is incorrect. A judge's ruling goes into effect immediately unless he voluntarily "stays" his ruling. There is no stay mentioned in the Bloomberg story, so there is no delay of the ruling, which means that the Obama Administration is barred by a judge from enforcing the directive of the Justice Department regarding public school bathrooms, shower rooms, and other facilities where privacy is important to students who are sometimes shy about exposing their bodies to the opposite sex and to the public in general.
A federal judge in Fort Worth, Texas, on Sunday sided with Texas and 12 other states that argued the administration’s policy usurps local control and threatens students’ safety and privacy.
Link to a similar story, but worded correctly, written by an Associated Press reporter. These are the first three paragraphs.
A federal judge in Texas has blocked the Obama administration's order that requires public schools to let transgender students use the bathrooms and locker rooms consistent with their chosen gender identity.
In a temporary injunction signed Sunday, U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor ruled that the federal education law known as Title IX "is not ambiguous" about sex being defined as "the biological and anatomical differences between male and female students as determined at their birth."
The judge said his order, which applies nationwide, was not about the policy issues of transgender rights but his conclusion that federal officials simply did not follow rules that required an opportunity for comment before such directives are issued.
The U.S. Supreme Court has a limited amount of time to hear and decide cases, so many lawyers who want their clients to go to this court for ultimate justice are, unfortunately, denied the opportunity, but when this court does decide to hear and decide a case, one common reason for this decision is when two different appeals courts have different rulings on similar cases. This circumstance is now close to coming true. North Carolina and Texas both have similar legislation, and both states have taken similar statewide action against the liberal actions of a large city in their state.
If I see updates on these legal cases, I will post them here as a more complete look at the relationship between elected officials, which is the theme of this blog.
August 22, 2016 update, part 2While I was researching this story, I found another story that is very similar to the North Carolina story. Their new law, called House Bill 2, was passed by their legislature because the City of Charlotte had passed a city ordinance requiring that all bathrooms, shower rooms, and other similar places where private intimacy is expected must be accessible to people who believe that they are a member of the opposite sex than the body they were born with.
The City of Houston, Texas passed a city ordinance that is similar to the ordinance passed by the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, but in Texas, their court system, not their legislature, told the city "no". These are the first two paragraphs of a July 24, 2016 Washington Times story. The links in these paragraphs were in their story.
The Texas Supreme Court gave Friday the Houston city council 30 days either to repeal a civil-rights ordinance allowing opposite-sex bathroom use or place it before the voters on the November ballot.The next paragraph of this story is about a separate issue. Houston's mayor, who is mentioned in the story, had issued a subpoena for the text of the sermons of five ordained members of the clergy. This story mentions that incident and the fact that this subpoena was withdrawn when a large number of people objected to it.
The 12-page decision says that the council ran afoul of the city charter when it refused to act after the city secretary certified a year ago the signatures submitted by a pastor-led coalition, which had moved to force a vote on the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance (HERO).
The story also mentions that Houston has a deadline of August 24th to file an appeal of the order which blocks the city ordinance.
A different Mayor, but it's the same issue.This is the first paragraph of a February 21, 2017 story in the Canada Free Press. The link was in their story.
Liberty Counsel released a three-page legal memorandum today proving that Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry can still legally veto the so-called “Human Rights Ordinance” (HRO), 2017-15, passed by the City Council last week. The ordinance is not final law until after the next City Council meeting on Tuesday, February 28, 2017.This is the fourth paragraph of the same story about the mayor of Jacksonville, Florida.
Because Mayor Curry still has the legal power to veto the HRO, hundreds of Jacksonville women are gathering this Wednesday, February 22, 2017, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m., for a rally and press conference outside on the sidewalks around City Hall and in Hemming Plaza. At 12:30 p.m., various women are scheduled to make public statements to the media urging the mayor to veto the HRO because the law would force them and their daughters to shower, dress and use bathrooms with men.
A different President, but it's still the same issueThese are the first two paragraphs of a February 22, 2017 Fox News story.
The Trump administration Wednesday revoked federal guidelines issued by former President Barack Obama that allowed public school students to use restrooms and other facilities corresponding to their gender identity.
A document submitted to the Supreme Court by the Solicitor General's office said that the Obama-era directive issued this past May did not "undergo any formal public process" or explain how the directive was "consistent with the express language of Title IX," the federal law outlawing sex discrimination in education and activities.
"Congress, state legislatures, and local governments are in a position to adopt appropriate policies or laws addressing this issue," Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement. "The Department of Justice remains committed to the proper interpretation and enforcement of Title IX and to its protections for all students, including LGBTQ students, from discrimination, bullying, and harassment.”
I have some advice for the North Carolina GovernorWhen you tell the residents of your state, as you have been doing, that the Justice Department is "overreaching" their Constitutional authority, please mention the fact that the same Civil Rights Division that is now attempting to enforce a law (Title VII) barring discrimination, has itself committed discrimination against some of its' own employees.
Employees of the Civil Rights Division were ordered by the Office Manager to vocalize support for homosexual couples, including homosexual partners of any employees of the Civil Rights Division itself.
These employees, including some born-again Christians, were denied the opportunity to remain silent about their feelings and their faith when confronted by homosexual couples.
Note: North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory lost his 2016 re-election battle to the Democrat challenger. Link to a December 5, 2016 W.R.A.L. story that includes a very gracious videotaped concession speech.
I have some advice for President ObamaYou were elected in 2008 when a well-known female candidate was almost certainly going to be chosen by your party to be the nominee.
You were re-elected in 2012 when your Republican challengers included the former Governor of Massachusetts, a former Senator (Rick Santorum), a former U.S. Representative (Ron Paul), and a former Speaker of the House (Newt Gingrich). The former Governor became the Republican nominee, and the only reason you beat him is because your Secret Service never arrested any of the thousands of people who made death threats against him.
During your first term, you and your Democrat friends in Congress forced American companies to accept a new health-care law that was designed to hurt them in many ways. The harsh penalties it imposed on every business that had more than 50 full-time employees forced many businesses to make them part-time employees and to hire other part-time employees to replace the lost productivity and the loyalty of the full-time employees.
That health-care law established health-care exchanges which were operating uneconomically, so of course, many of them went out of business.
This is the first paragraph of a February 27, 2014 Reason.com article. The link was included.
The federal government spent more on broken state-run exchanges than it did on its own troubled system. Of the 14 states, plus the District of Columbia, that established their own health insurance coverage under Obamacare, seven remain dysfunctional, disabled, or severely underperforming. Development of those exchanges was funded heavily by the federal government through a series of grants that totaled more than $1.2 billion—almost double the $677 million cost of development for the federal exchange.
These are the first two paragraphs of a May 1, 2015 Washington Post story.
Nearly half of the 17 insurance marketplaces set up by the states and the District under President Obama’s health law are struggling financially, presenting state officials with an unexpected and serious challenge five years after the passage of the landmark Affordable Care Act.
Many of the online exchanges are wrestling with surging costs, especially for balky technology and expensive customer call centers — and tepid enrollment numbers. To ease the fiscal distress, officials are considering raising fees on insurers, sharing costs with other states and pressing state lawmakers for cash infusions. Some are weighing turning over part or all of their troubled marketplaces to the federal exchange, HealthCare.gov, which now works smoothly.
These are the first three paragraphs of an October 25, 2015 New York Times story. The link in these paragraphs were in their story.
The grim announcements keep coming, picking up pace in recent weeks.
About a third, or eight, alternative health insurers created under President Obama’s health care law to spur competition that might have made coverage less expensive for consumers are shutting down. The three largest are among that number. Only 14 of the so-called cooperatives are still standing, some precariously.
The toll of failed co-op insurers, which were intended to challenge dominant companies that wield considerable power to dictate prices, has left about 500,000 customers scrambling to find health insurance for next year. A ninth co-op, which served Iowa and Nebraska, closed in February.
Other similar stories, in chronological orderWashington Free Beacon, November 4, 2015
The Daily Signal, November 30, 2015
CNN Money, April 19, 2016
Here's my advice, Bam-Bam. Take your bad-tasting medicine like a man. After your father failed to install a Marxist revolution in Kenya, where you were born, you copied him by trying and failing to "fundamentally transform America" into a socialist economy with a Marxist leadership.
These are the first three paragraphs of a November 28, 2014 article in Western Journalism.
It took years for many Americans to figure out that Obama’s policies not only do not work but are based upon a hard-left ideology not compatible with human freedom and economic prosperity. Indeed, the economy has not declined due to some random political decisions. It is the result of a series of decisions intended to move America away from its free-market roots and toward a socialist “utopia.” And of course, all of these decisions derive from the ideology of the man occupying the White House.
Needless to say, the socialist left believed the Obama era was the best opportunity ever to transform America to a socialist-based economy and eradicate our commitment to the Constitution designed to limit federal power.
But this should not have been a surprise. Virtually ALL of Obama’s main influences in life were communists and socialists who believed in transforming America into a socialist “paradise.”
|Bam-Bam, you tried and failed.
Take your weapons and leave.
America has survived a revolutionary war, a followup war in 1812 that saw the White House being burned to the ground, a war against Mexico at the end of the 19th century, two world wars in the 20th century, and the Vietnam War.
Don't try to stay relevant one minute after you have walked out of the White House that you stained with your evil deeds.
As soon as you can.
Other anti-Christian discrimination by U.S. Government agenciesThese other "agencies" includes the U.S. military, under the command of the Commander-in-Chief, Barak Hussein Obama.
These stories are listed in chronological order, oldest firstThese are the first three paragraphs of a November 23, 2011 Politico story. The link in the first paragraph was in their article.
A large cross that had been prominently displayed outside a chapel on an isolated military base in northern Afghanistan was taken down last week, prompting outrage from some American service members stationed there.
“We are here away from our families, and the chapel is the one place that feels like home,” a service member at Camp Marmal told POLITICO. “With the cross on the outside, it is a constant reminder for all of us that Jesus is here for us.”
“Not having it there is really upsetting,” added another. “I walk by the chapel daily on the way to chow and the gym, and seeing the cross is a daily reminder of my faith and what Jesus accomplished for me. It is daily inspiration and motivation for me to acknowledge my faith and stay on the right path.”
These are the first four paragraphs of a December 3, 2011 article on the BeliefNet website.
One day after an outraged Congressman denounced a Pentagon ban on Bibles or any other religious literature in U.S. military hospital, the Obama Administration has dropped the policy.This is a link to the actual memo, signed by the military commander of Walter Reed Hospital. It's a four-page PDF file. Be sure to read Section 8, their "Partners in Care Guidelines", especially 8(f), which explicitly mentions a ban on Bibles.
But questions linger. Why would unelected bureaucrats think they can ban Bibles? How did such a policy ever get approved? Who is responsible?
In Texas, an ongoing battle has been waged by the Veterans Administration and volunteers from the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Officials at Houston’s national cemetery barred any religious ceremonies at graveside and ignored denunciations by members of Congress as well as infuriated families. Calls have resounded nationwide for the firing of the cemetery’s director — but she has remained in office.
Now, Congressman Steve King (R-Iowa) has demanded that officials explain why bureaucrats have prohibited family members of wounded military troops from bringing Bibles or any religious reading materials to their loved ones.
These are the first two paragraphs of a May 21, 2012 New York Times article.
In an effort to show a unified front in their campaign against the birth control mandate, 43 Roman Catholic dioceses, schools, social service agencies and other institutions filed lawsuits in 12 federal courts on Monday, challenging the Obama administration’s rule that their employees receive coverage for contraception in their health insurance policies.
The nation’s Catholic bishops, unable to reverse the ruling by prevailing on the White House or Congress, have now turned to the courts, as they warned they would. The bishops say the requirement is an unprecedented attack on religious liberty because it compels Catholic employers to provide access to services that are contrary to their religious beliefs. The mandate is part of the Obama administration’s overhaul of the health care system, which the bishops say they otherwise support.
The U.S. Air Force deliberately recruited military chaplains from a front group for the Muslim Brotherhood, which has thrown gay people off the rooftops of buildings. Link to an April 28, 2013 story about the military chaplains on the website of the Clarion Project.
3½-minute CNN video
8-minute Rubin Report video
The Pentagon announced that it may court-martial any serviceman who discusses his Christian faith with someone else, according to this May 1, 2013 Breitbart article. Would any of the previous U.S. presidents, who really were Christians, have done that to a Christian member of the U.S. military?
The U.S. Air Force Academy has removed the phrase "in God we trust" from cadet handbooks, according to this November 19, 2013 Opinion by Todd Starnes on the Fox News website.
Volunteers from Gideons's International were denied their customary practice of handing out Bibles to recruits at Maxwell Air Force Base, according to this March 15, 2014 Opinion, also written by Todd Starnes on the Fox News website.
U.S. military personnel who were serving in Bahrain were ordered by their Commander-in-Chief to observe Islamic law during the Islamic month of Ramadan. This is an actual preference for Islam over Christianity! Link to a June 26, 2014 Stars and Stripes article.
Link to a February 8, 2016 article in The Hill, which says that N.A.S.A. is trying to prevent an employee-led group from mentioning Jesus in its' e-mails and other literature.
Link to my March 25, 2016 essay, on another one of my blogs. It shows even more evidence that Barak Obama is not a Christian, as he claims to be. For example, since he took office in January 2009, he has taken every Christmas vacation in secular Hawaii. I documented this in the essay, and I documented the fact that on his very first Christmas vacation in Hawaii, he never went inside a church.
A different President and a different policyThese are the first three paragraphs of a February 21, 2017 story in The Hill. The link in the second paragraph was in their story.
The Trump administration on Tuesday will reportedly rescind guidance to schools that bars discrimination against transgender students.
The Washington Blade reported that President Trump has approved a plan for the Justice and Education departments to send a letter to schools rescinding guidance that transgender students be allowed to use the restroom consistent with their gender identity.
The story quoted Mary Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality, in reporting that the guidance would be changed on Tuesday. She cited "reliable sources" in saying that President Trump had "green-lighted" the plan.