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There Is No Bipartisan Gun ‘Compromise’ In the Works, Just GOP Capitulation


REPORTED BY: JOHN DANIEL DAVIDSON | JUNE 01, 2022

Read more at https://www.conservativereview.com/there-is-no-bipartisan-gun-compromise-in-the-works-just-gop-capitulation-2657434917.html/

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A compromise entails giving up something to get something, striking a deal. That’s not what’s happening here. This is just surrender.

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Democrats and the corporate media like to call it a “compromise” when they get exactly what they want, and Republicans get nothing. Just witness the bipartisan talks underway in the wake of the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas on new gun control legislation. These talks, which reportedly involve four GOP senators led by Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, are focusing on two new gun control proposals: universal background checks and red flag laws. Whatever one’s opinion about the merits of these policies, it’s a fact that Democrats have long wanted to make it harder for law-abiding Americans to purchase guns and easier for the government to take them away. Both of these proposals would do just that, while arguably doing almost nothing to prevent the sort of mass shooting we saw last week in Uvalde.  One of the policy ideas, so-called “universal background checks,” isn’t a policy so much as a slogan meant to convey an inchoate desire that bad guys not be allowed to buy guns.

As nearly every gun owner in America knows, almost every gun sold in this country already comes with a background check, which is already required under federal law. As my colleague David Harsanyi noted yesterday, lying on your background check or evading it with a straw purchase are already illegal under federal law.  The other idea, a national red-flag law, would empower judges and police to confiscate guns from Americans who have not been charged with, nor committed, any crime at all. What’s more, a person judged guilty of pre-crime under a red-flag law cannot appeal the decision until after his or her guns have been confiscated.

Nineteen states already have some version of red-flag law already on the books, some worse than others, and all relatively new. New York has one, but it didn’t stop the Buffalo shooter from obtaining the guns he used to kill 10 people at grocery store last month. (He also passed a federal background check.)

So much for the policies themselves. The point here is not that they are good or bad ideas but that they are the sort of things Democrats have wanted to do for a long time and haven’t been able to because Republicans have blocked them. Why have Republicans blocked them? Because too many Republican voters understand that the purpose of such laws is to erode the Second Amendment and eventually take guns from law-abiding Americans who pose no risk of danger to anyone. 

But now we have these bipartisan talks underway. Reporting on the talks, The New York Times repeatedly framed them as efforts to strike a “deal” or a “compromise,” noting, for example, how projected GOP gains in the midterms “could inform how willing Republicans will be in the coming days to compromise on gun rights, an issue that has become central to their party.”

But there is in fact no compromise on the table. A compromise is when both parties give up something to get something else. That’s not happening here. Democrats aren’t talking about how they’re willing to, say, get rid of gun-free zones in schools and colleges that receive federal funding in exchange for Republican support for a national red-flag law. That would be a compromise or a deal, and it would no doubt enrage the base of either party, especially the Democrats’ radical left wing, which is why it’s very unlikely to happen.  What’s happening here is that some Republicans, including Sens. Cornyn and Lindsay Graham, among others, are mulling over whether and when they will cave to pressure from the media and their Democrat colleagues and simply give them what they want without getting anything in return.

Make no mistake, there is no “deal” in the works here, there is only Republican capitulation. That’s something conservatives, at least, should be well familiar with by now. Republicans in Washington have been capitulating to Democrats and the media for decades, on nearly every conceivable issue.

We should not be surprised that they are doing it again, but we should at least be honest about what’s happening and not pretend that Cornyn and Graham and the others are cooking up some kind of genius compromise on gun control. If they were, that really would be news.


John Daniel Davidson is a senior editor at The Federalist. His writing has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Claremont Review of Books, The New York Post, and elsewhere. Follow him on Twitter, @johnddavidson.

Senate Republicans Trash Rick Scott for Telling Voters How He’ll Work for Them


REPORTED BY: RACHEL BOVARD | MARCH 03, 2022

Read more at https://www.conservativereview.com/senate-republicans-trash-rick-scott-for-telling-voters-how-hell-work-for-them-2656832919.html/

Rick Scott and Donald Trump

Sen. Rick Scott recently did what no one else in the Republican Senate thought important: he released an agenda ahead of the 2022 midterm elections. Up to this point, Senate Republicans, led by Mitch McConnell, appeared content to proudly run on no strategy at all, convinced that simply pointing at Democrats and shrieking about how bad they are will crown them victorious.

As a point of electoral politics, this is not completely irrational. Polling shows Democratic policy failures and broad cultural overreaches are driving voters to Republicans in record numbers. But as I’ve written previously, a content-free campaign only gets you so far. In many cases, the voters now identifying with Republicans are non-traditional GOP voters. To get them to stick around—that is, to actually expand the base of the party while continuing to motivate traditional base voters—you have to tell them what you’re for, what you’re going to do. And then you have to go and do it.

Establishment politicians dislike agendas because they’re a measure of accountability. An agenda is a tangible reminder of what a majority said they were going to do. On the contrary, traditional establishment rhetoric routinely plays down expectations about what’s possible, makes vague hand gestures about “the long game” (usually undefined), and generally avoids anything that would force them to roll up their sleeves and attempt to legislate on the hard things—that is, what their base voters care about.

What the establishment prefers to do is what McConnell has always done: run on nothing except how bad the other guy is. But the absence of an agenda is a tacit acknowledgment of an agenda. And the agenda-in-the-absence-of-an-agenda is always the same: Wall Street wins, and so do lobbyists on K Street and the defense industrial base. Having no stated priorities just means the priorities are open to the highest bidder, or that the priorities of the status quo prevail.

Scott Leads, and GOP Leadership Excoriates Him

Enter Scott. Not content to follow the strategy of blandly grinning at the base while committing to addressing none of their concerns, Scott and his team wrote their own agenda—60 pages of it. The 11-point overview covers everything from border security to asserting the primacy of the nuclear family, declaring basic facts of biology, election integrity, and taking on Big Tech. It’s a broad and sweeping look at the issues, from economics to culture, that are roiling Americans all over the country.

For his efforts, Scott was not applauded, at least not in Washington. Rather, he was immediately savaged by his own leadership. McConnell and his allies reportedly excoriated Scott in a meeting behind closed doors, followed by a press conference where McConnell, when asked about Scott’s proposal, felt the need to remind everyone that “If we’re fortunate enough to have the majority next year, I’ll be the majority leader.” Someone’s feeling touchy. (The conference-wide election for majority leader will occur in the days following November’s election.)

McConnell, who ripped the Republican National Committee for justifiably censuring Republican Reps. Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger because “we support all members of our party, regardless of their positions on some issues,” apparently doesn’t support Scott’s attempt to articulate where he stands—and where he thinks the party should stand. Instead of cultivating the creativity and leadership expressed in Scott’s effort, McConnell dismissed it as an affront to his own power.

He also took issue with one of the bullet points in Scott’s sweeping agenda, specifically the proposal that roughly 60 percent of Americans who don’t pay income tax should be brought into tax parity. After feeling the need to remind everyone that he, not Scott, will be the incoming majority leader, McConnell stated, “We will not have as part of our agenda a bill that raises taxes on half the American people….”

Fair enough. Scott unveiled a 60-page, detailed proposal, and not everyone is going to agree on the full substance. But to dismiss the full proposal because of a bullet point is an obvious attempt to kneecap the effort entirely, not provide constructive feedback. Moreover, McConnell has, in the past, supported income tax parity, telling CBS News in 2012 that “Between 45 percent and 50 percent of Americans pay no income tax at all. We have an extraordinarily progressive tax code already. It is a mess and needs to be revisited again.”

But McConnell’s flip-flop on the issue will hardly bother him, because his fixation on Scott’s agenda isn’t about the substance, it’s about the perceived affront to his own authority. McConnell notoriously rules the Senate—constructed as a body of equals—with an iron fist. Although only when it suits him.

I Can Lead, Just Not on Anything Voters Want

Just two weeks ago, McConnell and his leadership team cried helplessness in the face of four of their own members failing to show up for a vote to take down what remains of Joe Biden’s federal vaccine mandate. Due to Democratic absences, Republicans could have prevailed on the vote, which failed 46-47 due to Sens. Jim Inhofe, Mitt Romney, Richard Burr, and Lindsey Graham choosing to be elsewhere. Inhofe was said to be with his ailing wife. Graham had jetted off to a defense junket in Germany. Romney and Burr were simply not there. Curiously, McConnell was not outraged by this embarrassing failure of senators to heed his authority. Perhaps that was because the vote—hugely important to the GOP base—wasn’t treated as important by the Senate GOP leadership.

Wittingly or not, McConnell’s failure to lead on a midterm agenda has opened the door for senators who will. Scott should be applauded for his effort, particularly as it’s already achieving results. At the end of the press conference in which he trashed Scott’s agenda, McConnell, who has previously said voters will find out the agenda when they re-elect the Senate GOP, was forced to issue the bare outline of one: inflation, energy, defense, the border, and crime.

This has none of the detail or comprehensive thoughtfulness exhibited by Scott’s effort, but right now, it’s all GOP voters have to hang their hat on. And the fact that it exists at all is because Scott saw a leadership breach and stepped squarely into it. Good on him.


Rachel Bovard is The Federalist’s senior tech columnist and the senior director of policy at the Conservative Partnership Institute. She has more than a decade of policy experience in Washington and has served in both the House and Senate in various roles, including as a legislative director and policy director for the Senate Steering Committee under the successive chairmanships of Sen. Pat Toomey and Sen. Mike Lee. She also served as director of policy services for The Heritage Foundation.

Ann Coulter Op-ed: My Nation-Unifying Impeachment Solution


Commentary by Ann Coulter  Ann Coulter | Posted: Feb 10, 2021

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.

My Nation-Unifying Impeachment Solution

Source: AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Senate Republicans should offer to convict Donald Trump in return for Democrats agreeing to fund the wall. Trump is not going to run again anyway. In four years, he will be as viable a presidential candidate as Hillary was in 2020. You wouldn’t have guessed that, either, from all the gnashing of teeth about the MOST QUALIFIED WOMAN EVER TO SEEK THE PRESIDENCY immediately after she lost. 

The reason elected Republicans, Fox News, OAN, Newsmax and a hundred talk radio hosts are terrified of supporting conviction is that they don’t want to look like Mitt Romney and incur the wrath of the Trump base (whatever remains of it).

Trading conviction for a wall solves that. It will remind Trump loyalists that he betrayed them on his central campaign promise, and also will actually fulfill that promise.

Democrats, if they have half a brain, will leap at the offer. They are about to destroy Biden’s presidency by defining themselves — as The New York Times’ Frank Bruni put it — as “antonyms to Trump.” Trump was for a wall. Ipso facto, Democrats are for open borders.

Trump was lying, liberals! Even President Obama was for border security. Great socialist hope Bernie Sanders has denounced open borders as a gift to the Koch brothers.

They don’t care. Trump supporters wanted a wall, so we’re going to punish them by throwing open the border!

If Biden continues with his tsunami of open border executive orders: 1) COVID-19 cases will multiply, as untested, unvaccinated third-worlders pour in at breakneck speed; 2) Black and Hispanic unemployment will go through the roof; and 3) crime — already reaching mind-blowing proportions — will become as potent a political issue as it has ever been.

Good luck in 2022, Democrats!

But if Democrats were to trade wall funding for the holy grail of a Trump conviction, they could save Biden’s presidency, humiliate Trump, and explain to their nut base, We know, we know — walls don’t work — but we had to trade it to convict Trump! Aren’t you happy?

It’s win-win-win all around.

Sitting on a nation-unifying idea like that, I never should have tuned into the impeachment trial. I knew the Democrats would somehow manage to turn me against conviction. I’m still not pro-Trump — that’s a tall order. But could Democrats please ease up on the hysterical weeping?

The president is not supposed to be organizing protests at all, much less against his own vice president. Isn’t that enough? You don’t need to juice up the story, Democrats.

Impeachment manager Rep. Jamie Raskin:

“All around me, people were calling their wives and their husbands, their loved ones to say goodbye ….

“[My] kids, hiding under the desk, placing what they thought were their final texts and whispered phone calls to say their goodbyes. They thought they were going to die.”

Yes, being forced to listen to the Trump “shaman” gas on about organic food could have annihilated legions!

Trump is a selfish, ignorant child. But he is not responsible for the reactions of neurotic liberals.

It would be as if Raskin’s neighbor smashed into his parked car, then drove off. Raskin has a perfectly good case without having to wail, I WAS AFRAID HE WOULD COME TO MY HOUSE AND MURDER MY ENTIRE FAMILY!

Raskin’s most precious argument was this:

“Of all the terrible, brutal things I saw … watching someone use an American flagpole, the flag still on it, to spear and pummel one of our police officers ruthlessly, mercilessly, tortured by a pole with a flag on it that he was defending with his very life.”

First, give me a break, Democrats, pretending to give a crap about the American flag.

Second: “Tortured”?

Impeachment managers apparently used a thesaurus to write their speeches:

Siri, give me a synonym for “poke” or “strike.”

Siri: jab, punch, prod, thrust, wallop … TORTURE.

Really?

Yup, it’s right there in Roget’s!

Curiously, even the teary-eyed Raskin didn’t allege that Officer Brian Sicknick was killed by the protesters, a claim being made hourly on MSNBC.

Raskin: “People died that day. Officers ended up with head damage and brain damage. People’s eyes were gouged. One officer had a heart attack. One officer lost three fingers that day. Two officers have taken their own lives.”

Jeremy Bash, later that day on MSNBC: “They killed a cop, Nicole!”

If Officer Sicknick’s death truly resulted from injuries sustained at the hands of the mob, it would be the case in chief against the protesters. (We’re not counting heart attacks, much less suicides that occurred days, or weeks, later.) But no one in the media has been able to scare up a single eyewitness to the attack on Brian Sicknick?

Unlike defund-the-police liberals, I actually am heartbroken about the death of a Trump-supporting law enforcement officer.

But the media are lying about his death. First, they claimed he was hit on the head with a fire extinguisher. Then they said he was dragged into the crowd and beaten. All that is known for sure is that after Sicknick returned to headquarters, he collapsed and later died.

Last week, CNN nonchalantly inserted this into a story on Officer Sicknick: “Medical examiners did not find signs that the officer sustained any blunt force trauma, so investigators believe that early reports that he was fatally struck by a fire extinguisher are not true.”

There’s no hope for our media, who are irredeemable liars. But there’s still a chance for everyone else to come out a winner here! Trade conviction for a wall, Republicans.

Obama’s last hope for GOP support on Iran: Susan Collins


By Julian Hattem08/26/15

Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine). Photo by Greg Nash

Suicide-USA-NRD-600Senate Republicans are united in their opposition to President Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran — with one exception. Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) has yet to take a position on the agreement, making her the last undecided Senate Republican who could conceivably side with the president. Some observers say Collins, a centrist known for bucking party convention, could go it alone next month and vote against a resolution to kill the Iran deal when it comes to the Senate floor.

“At this time, Sen. Collins is still gathering a lot of information and has not reached a final decision,” an aide said last week. The aide reaffirmed on Tuesday that Collins is still undecided. Collins “remains concerned about several aspects of the agreement, such as the lack of a good inspection regime to make sure that the Iranians are not cheating on the agreement,” the aide added, while noting that the senator has been “meeting with people on both sides of this very complex and important issue. She believes a good inspection regime is absolutely essential and is carefully weighing this issue in her decision making.” Picture3

Death to AmericaOn Wednesday afternoon, Collins’s office said that she would not announce a position on the deal until after lawmakers return to Washington in September. Collins became the last Senate Republican on the fence after Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) announced on Friday that she would oppose the agreement. The Alaska senator said the deal does not require Iran to completely abandon its nuclear program.

Murkowski and Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) — who announced earlier this month that he would vote against the deal — had been considered the only other Senate Republicans who might side with Obama.

There are reasons to think Collins is truly torn. She was one of just seven Senate Republicans who did not sign a controversial letter to the Iranian government in March that warned a nuclear deal could be revoked by the next president. Collins may also be feeling boxed in by Sen. Angus King (I-Maine), who came out in support of the agreement in a floor speech shortly before the August recess. Though he is officially an independent, King caucuses with Democrats.

Additionally, Collins might be hesitant to rebuff the president, given that the United States took a lead role in the multination Iran negotiations.

“Sen. Collins is quite frequently concerned with good governance and good process,” said Blaise Misztal, the director of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s national security program. “I could see her not wanting this deal to have to go to a presidential veto.”More Evidence

Missing-Piece-600-LIStill, close observers of the Iran deal remain skeptical that Collins, or any other Republican, will side with the president and vote to uphold the deal. “Given that the way votes are breaking, it might even be difficult for opponents to get the 60 votes they need in the Senate to get past cloture,” Misztal added. “I don’t think [Collins is] going to feel that compunction to have to break with her party on the deal.”

The White House likely needs the support of 34 Senate Democrats to uphold a veto of the disapproval resolution, and the support of 41 to prevent it from ever reaching Obama’s desk. So far, only two Senate Democrats have announced that they will oppose the deal, while 29 have committed to backing it. Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) became the latest supporter of the deal on Tuesday.

The math is slightly different in the House, where the lack of a filibuster means Republicans will have no trouble passing the initial resolution. If the House voted on whether to override Obama, Democrats could afford to Deflated Diplomacylose no more than 43 members to uphold the White House’s veto.

While supporters and opponents of the deal have been focused on the Senate, there’s also a chance that one or two House Republicans break from their party and oppose legislation aiming to kill the deal.

“It is a rare occasion when Republicans all vote together,” Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) — an ardent critic of the Iran agreement — told reporters earlier this week. “This will be close, I suspect,” he added. “I can’t imagine there will be too many [defectors].”

But might there be at least one? “Sure,” Pompeo answered.

Reps. Walter Jones (N.C.), Justin Amash (Mich.) and Thomas Massie (Ky.) are considered to be the House Republicans most likely to oppose a Pitiful-Deal-NRD-600resolution against the Iran deal. All three are often on the opposite side of Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio).Cannot fix RINOS

However, Jones — a former Democrat — appears to be facing a primary challenge against veteran Republican operative Taylor Griffin next year, which could make a defection on Iran politically risky. Griffin came within six points of ousting Jones last year, and he criticized the lawmaker earlier this summer for being “just not a good conservative.”

Spokespeople for Massie and Amash said in recent days that the lawmakers had yet to settle on a position. A spokesperson for Jones did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

The White House is not expecting any GOP support for the deal, but would surely not hesitate to use even a single Republican vote as evidence of bipartisan backing.

Yet there are risks in touting any GOP support, given opposition from top Democrats such as Sens. Bob Menendez (N.J.) and Charles Schumer (N.Y.) — the likely next Senate Democratic leader — as well as Reps. Eliot Engel (N.Y.) and Brad Sherman (Calif.).  “Even if one or two Republicans do vote for the deal, it really matters very little because it is now virtually certain that the deal will be voted down by significant, bipartisan majorities in both houses of Congress,” said Jamil Jaffer, a former top aide to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and current director of George Mason Law School’s Homeland and National Security Law Program.

By voting it down, lawmakers will be “sapping the deal of all political credibility, and making it clear to European companies that they ought wait until at least November 2016 before taking any action to start trading with Iran,” he added.Picture4

This story was updated at 5:36 p.m.

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