“One single object … [will merit] the endless gratitude of the society: that of restraining the judges from usurping legislation.” —Thomas Jefferson (1825)
IN TODAY’S DIGEST
They aim to turn a 6-3 conservative majority to a 7-6 leftist one.
Democrats sure are impatient. Just last Friday, President Joe Biden signed an executive order establishing his Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court. Among other “reforms,” the commission is tasked with considering the “membership and size of the Court.” Well, later today Democrats in Congress are set to unveil new legislation to add four justices to the Court. Then again, we all know that Biden isn’t the one leading his party these days.
It’s true that the Constitution does not prescribe a number of justices, giving Congress the power to do so. It’s also true that there have been different numbers in the Court’s history — anywhere from five to 10. Still, Congress settled on nine way back in 1869. Even Joe Biden wasn’t in the Senate yet.
After being blocked from replacing the constitutional stalwart Antonin Scalia with the leftist milquetoast Merrick Garland in 2016, Democrats have bitterly rued Hillary Clinton’s defeat because Donald Trump appointed three justices in his four years, including Amy Coney Barrett to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Democrats have only themselves to blame, of course. They invoked the “nuclear option,” eliminating the filibuster on judicial nominees and setting the precedent for then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to follow suit on Supreme Court nominees when Democrats tried to filibuster Neil Gorsuch.
Thus, the Supreme Court now features a 6-3 originalist majority, if anyone still counts John Roberts.
So, why four seats? That’s how many Democrats need to fully reclaim a 7-6 majority. The bill has virtually no chance of passing, but how much more blatantly political could they get?
“We need more than a commission to restore integrity to the court,” declared the bill’s Senate sponsor, Massachusetts Senator Edward Markey.
During the 2020 election campaign, Democrats from Biden to the two Georgia Democrat Senate candidates and on down the line largely avoided answering questions about packing the Court. It’s typical for Democrats to hide their real agenda because they know voters would oppose it, but packing the Court is particularly noteworthy for it’s destructiveness.
Even one of the Court’s three leftists, Stephen Breyer, says packing SCOTUS would erode trust in the judiciary. Before she died last year, Ginsburg warned about the same thing. Likewise, former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, the Democrat who first nuked the filibuster and whom Republicans can thank for the slate of conservative judges confirmed in the last four years, has been overcome by a case of self-reflection. “I think that we better be very, very careful in saying that we need to expand the Supreme Court,” he now says.
Oh, and Biden once called packing the court a “bonehead idea.”
Tell that to Markey and his House pals, Jerrold Nadler and Mondaire Jones of New York and Hank Johnson of Georgia. Those four Democrats are announcing their bill today by pontificating about the need for more justices on the steps outside the Supreme Court building.
There is no excuse for suppressing all details of the Capitol shooting investigation.
There were significant developments this week that have interesting implications regarding the Capitol Police shooting of Ashli Babbitt.
The backdrop for these developments is the BIG “systemic racism” lie that Democrat Party leftists have used to frame the few police-involved deaths of black men since violent felony-offender George Floyd died in Minneapolis. That systemic racism lie is nothing more than a political construct to frame the identity politics of division Democrats depend on for constituency cohesion.
First, with the high-profile prosecution of the police officer involved in Floyd’s death underway, the officer involved in the shooting of a Kenosha, Wisconsin, black man last August, which resulted in immediate Demo condemnation of the officer, was resolved this week. At the time, Wisconsin Demo Governor Tony Evers tried and convicted the cop: “Jacob Blake … is not the first Black man … mercilessly killed at the hands of individuals in law enforcement.”
As I noted then, “The circumstances in Kenosha appear to be justifiable despite being tragic.” Indeed, the officer was rightly cleared in the case based on video evidence and testimony, because the suspect posed an imminent threat to the officers present. He has returned to his job.
Everyone knows that officer’s name and he will be forever branded by the Left as a racist and at risk of retribution.
Second, the officer involved in the shooting of a black man in a Minneapolis suburb, as that man was being arrested on a weapons warrant along with a warrant for aggravated robbery, was herself charged with manslaughter and jailed. Similar to the Kenosha case, the suspect in the latest Minneapolis case refused lawful orders, lunged back into his vehicle where he could have easily accessed a weapon, and was shot by the officer. In the fog of the moment, the officer believed she had her non-lethal taser in hand. Though rare, this is not the first incident involving such confusion. However, as with the Kenosha shooting, there is abundant video evidence and the shooting appears justifiable because the suspect posed an imminent threat to the officers present.
Leading the chorus presuming her guilt, Joe Biden suggested the shooting may have been intentional: “You all watched … the film … which is fairly, fairly graphic. Question is, was it an accident? Was it intentional?”
But everyone knows that officer’s name, and regardless of the outcome of her case, she will be forever branded by the Left as a racist killer and at risk of retribution.
Third, regarding the Capitol Police officer who killed Ashli Babbitt, federal prosecutors announced there will be no charges filed. According to The Washington Post, “Authorities determined that there was insufficient evidence to prove Babbitt’s civil rights were violated, and that it was reasonable for the officer to believe he was firing in self-defense or in defense of [others].” And that is that…
However, unlike all other officer-involved shootings, there has been no public information released about the investigation of Babbitt’s shooting — not the name of the officer involved, no public information about the motive or competence of the officer involved, no testimony. For that reason, there is no reason to trust the decision to exonerate that officer, especially given the political influence of the Biden/Harris regime in that investigation.
But there are graphic videos of Babbitt’s shooting here, here and here, which clearly show the circumstances from her side of the door and her death. At the time, Babbitt was among hundreds of QAnon-drinking Capitol rioters on 6 January, whose behavior was disgraceful. But that is not justification for her death.
As I wrote last month, what is clear from the videos is that within feet of Babbitt, there were four uniformed officers, at least four additional heavily armed riot police, and one or more plain-clothed officers — none of whom made an effort to prevent her from climbing through the broken window of that door.
As Tucker Carlson observed yesterday, “There are a lot of things to notice about [the videos]. But what is most striking, and never discussed, is that several Capitol Hill police officers were directly behind Ashli Babbitt when she was killed. … Explain how Ashley Babbitt posed an imminent physical threat to anyone when she was killed. She didn’t.”
As a former law enforcement officer, my best estimate is that the real threat the Capitol Police officer perceived was the surge of protesters who might follow Babbitt through that broken window. As I also noted last month, I believe the officer fired in the heat of the moment, and it was a very heated moment, but there is nothing in the videos remotely proving that Babbitt, a five-foot, two-inch, 110-pound unarmed woman, posed an imminent threat to the officer who killed her, or anyone else.
But we will never know because everything about that officer and shooting investigation has been officially suppressed — despite the fact that the videos raise far more serious questions about the justification for her shooting than either of the aforementioned Wisconsin or Minnesota cases. In both of the latter cases, the suspect clearly represented an imminent threat to the officers involved. I am deeply troubled about the suppression of all the Capitol investigation details. Those details could be released without releasing the officer’s name.
Finally and notably, as federal officials announced the exoneration of the Capitol officer, the FBI arrested the Texas man who provided the clearest video of Babbitt’s shooting for criminal trespassing.
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The legislation is little other than a ploy to justify Democrat calls for ending the filibuster.
Senate Democrats recently introduced a bill to address the supposed rise in anti-Asian hate crimes. This narrative was given popularity by Democrats and the Leftmedia as they sought to pin the blame on Donald Trump, who accurately noted that the coronavirus originated in China. It has since been used as a cudgel against anyone who correctly points out that China was responsible for releasing the pandemic onto the world. To suggest such a thing is to promote anti-Asian hatred, the Left dubiously claims.
So it comes as little surprise that Democrats — keen on pushing the false narrative that America is a nation awash in white supremacy and systemic racism, and therefore must be entirely restructured from the ground up in order to bring about “justice” — aim to paint Republicans as anti-Asian if they don’t jump on board this hate crime train.
As Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) expressed, “Combating hate in the Asian American community can and should be bipartisan. Who would oppose this very simple but necessary legislation?”
But just how “necessary” is this legislation? Well, it is true that crimes against Asians have increased over the last year, but the Leftmedia only drops statistics like “150% surge in anti-Asian hate crimes in 2020” in a deliberate attempt to promote a dubious narrative that simply doesn’t comport with the reality on the ground.
National Review’s Michael Brendan Dougherty notes, “When you look at the numbers, you see why the percentage is cited. In Los Angeles the number of anti-Asian hate crimes reported rose from seven to 15. In New York, from three to 28. In a city where tens of thousands died from COVID-19, made up of millions of people, the number of anti-Asian hate crimes seems relatively small. By contrast, in the previous year, 2019, over 1,000 anti-Semitic incidents were reported in New York City.”
The bill boldly asserts the supposed cause of the rise in anti-Asian hate crimes without any genuine evidence to support such assertions. Note that the legislation would have the attorney general “designate an officer or employee of the Department of Justice whose sole responsibility [for at least one year] shall be to facilitate the expedited review of COVID-19 hate crimes and reports of any such crime to Federal, State, or local law enforcement agencies.” In other words, Democrats are essentially codifying their own dubious narrative that people are motived to commit hate crimes against Asians because they associate the coronavirus with Asians.
Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) voiced skepticism over the legislation, observing, “My understanding is it doesn’t really do much.” He further surmised that it’s little other than a “messaging vote.”
The truth is, the bill has nothing to do with protecting Asian Americans or any Americans for that matter. It’s a political gambit as the Senate Democrats look for ways to create an excuse to justify eliminating the filibuster. If they can bait Republicans into engaging in a filibuster against a dubious anti-hate crime bill, they’ll have the talking points to paint Republicans as anti-Asian at worst or out of touch at best. Either way, they will claim Republicans are obstructing the ability to get badly needed legislation through to Joe Biden.
It doesn’t look like Republicans are falling for this particular trap, as Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has indicated the GOP won’t filibuster the bill. But Democrats still have their messaging for 2022 and beyond.
Democrats are shamelessly using anti-police mob violence for political gain.
“It wasn’t an accident. Policing in our country is inherently & intentionally racist. Daunte Wright was met with aggression & violence. I am done with those who condone government funded murder. No more policing, incarceration, and militarization. It can’t be reformed.” —Michigan Democrat Representative Rashida Tlaib, April 12
“All employees working for the City of Brooklyn Center are entitled to due process with respect to discipline. This employee will receive due process and that’s really all that I can say today.” —Brooklyn Center City Manager Curt Boganey
Following the shooting and killing of 20-year-old Daunte Wright by officer Kimberly Potter, a 26-year veteran of the force, during a traffic stop Sunday afternoon — which Police Chief Tim Gannon described as “an accidental discharge” of a handgun instead of a taser — one of the above politicians still has a job.
Unfortunately it isn’t Boganey. For daring to support due process, the city council voted to give authority over the police department to the mayor’s office so Boganey could be fired. Council member Kris Lawrence-Anderson admitted the action was taken to appease rioters. “He was doing a great job. I respect him dearly,” she said. “I didn’t want repercussions at a personal level.”
Thus, Lawrence-Anderson opted for anarchy.
It is anarchy best described as formulaic. Ever since George Floyd died following his own confrontation with police — and a similar effort to resist arrest that was allegedly part of the equation here — such confrontations have not been seen as tragedies but as opportunities. Opportunities to riot and attack police, as well as loot some businesses and burn others to the ground. And over the course of a year, rioters have done so while feckless Democrat politicians either looked the other way or condoned the mayhem, even as their media allies pushed precisely the same kind of rank propaganda embraced by Rashida Tlaib.
And it is rank propaganda. “In 2019 police officers fatally shot 1,004 people, most of whom were armed or otherwise dangerous,” columnist Heather Mac Donald reveals. “African-Americans were about a quarter of those killed by cops last year (235), a ratio that has remained stable since 2015. That share of black victims is less than what the black crime rate would predict, since police shootings are a function of how often officers encounter armed and violent suspects. In 2018, the latest year for which such data have been published, African-Americans made up 53% of known homicide offenders in the U.S. and commit about 60% of robberies, though they are 13% of the population.”
Why do black Americans commit crimes at levels disproportionate to their representation in the population? Daunte Wright shouldn’t have been killed. But this latest interaction with police wasn’t anomalous. Wright was shot while attempting to drive away. He made a similar attempt last June when it was reported that he was waving a gun around. He was cited and ordered to appear in court. He didn’t. The outstanding warrant arising from that case was a factor in this confrontation.
Nonetheless, neither of those incidents or the other arrests on his record matter. For the Left, all that matters is maintaining a narrative of ongoing black victimhood and systemic racism — because it is a lucrative endeavor.
Thus, the Democrat Party has exploited those assertions to cultivate black American loyalty at the ballot box now considered so routine that Joe Biden himself stated if black Americans can’t figure out whether to support him or Donald Trump for president, “then you ain’t black.”
It is also extremely lucrative for the racial arsonists as well, with the latest example being BLM cofounder Patrisse Cullors, who, despite her self-professed allegiance to Marxism, has amassed a rather capitalistic portfolio of four houses over the past five years costing more than $3 million, including one in Los Angeles’s Topanga Canyon, where 88% of residents are white and just 1.8% are black.
Neither Biden nor Cullors nor the legions of other equally woke politicians and corporate hucksters who view mob violence as a useful tool for advancing their contemptible agenda will ever spend a nanosecond boarding up and/or defending their businesses or homes from the looters and arsonists they have enabled. Abject fear and the nightmare of losing what one has worked a lifetime to achieve is for “little people” — of all races.
How little? “Retailers urged to re-think police calls for low-level crimes after George Floyd’s death,” states a headline in Minnesota’s Star Tribune newspaper. Apparently, it is better for store owners and their employees to endure a certain level of lawlessness than be accused of “profiling” minority shoppers.
What undergirds such hucksterism? Genuine bigotry in pursuit of unassailable power. Thus, the Democrat Party and its woke corporate allies can insist that any effort made by state legislatures to maintain election integrity amounts to “Jim Crow,” using the racist rationale that black Americans are incapable of procuring the same voter ID every other race and ethnic group is capable of procuring.
That Democrats own Jim Crow? The wholesale corruption of the public schools that teach students of every race to despise their own nation — and ignore its history in the process — “solved” that problem.
That corporations have met to strategize about using their power to extort state legislatures to abandon such efforts? Such is only possible when their media collaborators ignore two blatantly inconvenient realities: First, as the leftist Brennan Center for Justice reveals, bills to further election integrity have been proposed in 47 out of 50 states — meaning some Democrat-controlled states are also concerned with voter integrity. Second, an overwhelming majority of Americans — including a majority of black Americans — support requiring an ID to vote.
Tragically, those realties are obliterated by a steady diet of race-mongering to maintain the tribalism that must be fostered, lest Americans begin to think in terms of class. If that happened, ordinary Americans of all races would discover that the wholesale sellout of their interests by corporate oligarchs continues unabated and that the shift to global governance wholly controlled by those oligarchs remains the endgame.
Rioters willing to advance anarchy are the oligarchs’ useful idiot foot soldiers, and they have been paid handsomely for their efforts: The Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation revealed it received more than $90 million in donations last year. That buys a lot of mobs. Mobs that apparently believe due process, trial by jury, and the Constitution itself should be supplanted by retribution and vengeance.
And not just in this case. “In the ongoing Minneapolis trial of former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin, BLM and its allies have shown no more interest in justice than did Alice’s Queen of Hearts,” writes columnist Jack Cashill. “‘Sentence first — verdict afterwards,’ said the Queen, and when Alice protested the Queen shouted, ‘Off with her head.’ Fearing the loss of their heads, perhaps literally, too many powerful people stand by mutely as the mob begins to circle the Minneapolis Court House.”
Not just the Minneapolis Court House. The mobs are in the streets of Brooklyn Center, Portland, Oregon, and Washington, DC. At Brooklyn Center, self-identified members of antifa have joined the mix. Officer Potter and Police Chief Gannon have resigned after the city council voted to fire them. “I would hope that this would bring calm to the community,” said Brooklyn Center Mayor Mike Elliott.
Don’t bet on it. Neither calm — nor due process — serves the interests of our corporate oligarchy and a Democrat Party looking to nationalize the voting process in a quest for unassailable power.
On the Web
- Thomas Gallatin: Oil Companies Push Carbon Tax in Lieu of Biden Climate Policy — They’re essentially saying that paying a higher tax is better than any regulatory changes Team Biden dreams up.
- Tom Aquinas: Woka-Cola: Dead Company Walking — Leftist CEOs tempt fate with one of America’s most iconic brands.
- Gary Bauer: A Disturbing Disconnect — Biden honors a cop killed by a black supremacist, and then meets with black supremacists.
- In Brief: Why Politicians, Pundits, and ‘Experts’ Don’t Want COVID to End — We’re in a “perpetual pandemic,” says The Spectator’s Stephen Miller.
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Top of the Fold
- House committee votes to approve reckless bill for Washington, DC, statehood (UPI)
Editor’s Note: According to the article, “The Democrat-backed bill H.R. 51 to make Washington, D.C., the 51st state passed 25-19 by the House committee on oversight and reform on Wednesday with no Republican support. … [Eleanor Holmes] Norton said the bill’s 215 cosponsors ‘virtually’ guarantees it’ll pass the House.” But as our Thomas Gallatin has comfortingly pointed out, “To make DC a state would require a constitutional amendment passed with two-thirds approval of both chambers of Congress and ratified by three-quarters of the States. The prospect of that happening is highly unlikely, to say the least.”
- Kamala Harris to travel to Guatemala and Mexico amid criticism over border crisis (Fox News)
“Vice President Kamala Harris said on Wednesday that she will travel to Guatemala and Mexico as part of her role in tackling the ‘root causes’ of the swirling migration crisis at the southern border — as she faces intense criticism for her alleged lack of action on the crisis. … The Biden administration has been struggling to handle a historic surge in migrants to the border, one that critics have said is fueled by the administration’s liberal immigration policies. The administration refused to describe it as a crisis, calling it a ‘challenge’ instead, and has blamed the prior administration.”
Government & Politics
- Biden’s American Jobs Plan could cost more than [cough] $666,000 per job created (Disrn)
- IRS chief warns of unpaid taxes hitting $1 trillion (The Hill), so naturally the White House proposes $900 million budget boost for IRS enforcement efforts (Waller)
- Gary Gensler confirmed by Senate to lead the SEC, Wall Street’s top regulator (CNBC)
Annals of the “Social Justice” Caliphate
- NCAA says it will not host championships (but regular games still apparently pass muster) in states that bar “transgender” athletes (Disrn)
- Amazon and Google join hundreds of woke corporations in signing letter opposing voting integrity (National Review)
- United Airlines doubles down on wokeness — will be “100% green” (Power Line)
- Biden announces troops withdrawal from Afghanistan will begin May 1 (Post Millennial)
- U.S. readying sanctions against Russia for alleged hacking and election interference (Forbes)
- Minnesota cop who shot Daunte Wright charged with second-degree manslaughter (National Review)
- Biden rolls back Trump’s pro-life curbs on family planning funds (Politico)
- Drug overdose deaths surged during coronavirus pandemic (Axios)
- Moderna’s COVID vaccine 90% effective after six months (UPI)
- Facebook spent $23.4 million on security for Mark Zuckerberg in 2020 (NY Post)
- “Reports of the death of shale are exaggerated”: U.S. oil patch springs to life (Examiner)
- Policy: Beware Biden’s ghost-gun protocol (National Review)
- Policy: Don’t buy into the college loan pity party (AEI)
- Satire: BLM founder calls for abolishing police in all the areas where she doesn’t live (Babylon Bee)
For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit Headline Report.
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- Wrecking Biodiversity — Wind and solar power require far more land than nuclear, natural gas, and coal power. They are also far more destructive to regions of high biodiversity.
- Stories of Us: Samaire Armstrong — “My message to those in Hollywood right now: We need to break the silence before it’s too late.”
- How the Left Uses Race-Baiting — It’s time to examine Georgia’s new voting laws that are supposedly “racist.”
For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.
Insight: “Kings or parliaments could not give the rights essential to happiness… We claim them from a higher source — from the King of kings, and Lord of all the earth. They are not annexed to us by parchments and seals. They are created in us by the decrees of Providence, which establish the laws of our nature. They are born with us; exist with us; and cannot be taken from us by any human power, without taking our lives.” —John Dickinson (1732-1808)
For the record: “The U.S. is now vaccinating as many as 4 million people a day, and President Joe Biden has announced vaccines are plentiful enough that all adults will be eligible by May 1. A remarkable achievement. Biden gets some credit for distributing the shots, but Trump is responsible for producing vaccines in record time and guaranteeing that America had first dibs on the supply. The current president claims he inherited a mess. In fact, he inherited a miracle — Trump’s Operation Warp Speed. … Operation Warp Speed paid to manufacture the vaccines before clinical trials proved they were safe and worked. Companies couldn’t take that risk. It was a bold strategy and it worked.” —Betsy McCaughey
Observations: “Something’s got to unite us. And the games or sport in the past has been some kind of unification. Now, it’s almost like a division. I can’t tell you how many people … have said to me, ‘I don’t watch anymore. It’s not about the game anymore.’ I tend to agree. It’s a shame.” —former NFL Quarterback Brett Favre
Touché: “[BLM cofounder Patrisse Khan-Cullors is] telling you what she is. She’s a Marxist. So Marxists steal money from other people and they enrich themselves until the people that they stole from are poor. And so she has stolen money from other people on the pretext of a lie that is Black Lives Matter. … Apparently, the ‘black movement’ was Patrisse moving herself … into other areas of the communities of people that she claims are oppressing black Americans.” —Candace Owens
Race bait: “Black women in our country are facing a maternal health crisis. … We know the primary reasons why: systemic racial inequities and implicit bias.” —VP Kamala Harris
Lack of self-awareness: “We cannot stand by and watch as a flawed system again and again devalues the lives of Black men & women.” —alleged serial sexual assailant New York Governor Andrew Cuomo
Demagogue: “Another life of a Black man taken by law enforcement.” —Minnesota Governor Tim Walz
Grand delusions: “I don’t believe that officers need to necessarily have weapons every time they’re making a traffic stop.” —Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, Mayor Mike Elliott
The BIG Lie: “Daunte Wright’s killing was not a random, disconnected ‘accident’ — it was the repeated outcome of an indefensible system that grants impunity for state violence, rewards it w/ endlessly growing budgets at the cost of community investment, & targets those who question that order.” —AOC
Non compos mentis: “The murder of #DaunteWright is rooted in white supremacy and results from the intentional criminalization of Black and Brown communities. This system can’t be reformed. It must be dismantled and a real system of public safety rebuilt from the ground up.” —Ben & Jerry’s
And last… “About 250,000 people are killed annually due to medical mistakes made by doctors. We don’t riot, loot, or protest doctors. Duante Wright was resisting arrest and the responding officer made a tragic mistake. Why doesn’t society extend police officers any understanding?” —Candace Owens
For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.
For more of today’s cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.
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