September 8, 2014 Monthly Meeting
Longview First Church of the Nazarene
2601 H.G. Mosley Pkwy., Longview
7:00 to 8:30 p.m.
GUEST SPEAKERS: Texas Senator Robert Nichols and Jeff Austin, III, Commissioner with TxDOT
TOPIC: Texas highway Funding – which will be voted on in the November 2014 election. Know the facts before you place your vote on this Constitutional Amendment.
on November 2014 Ballot
In the November 4, 2014, general election, Texas voters will be asked
to approve or reject an amendment to the Texas Constitution to dedicate
certain funds to transportation. The proposed amendment would direct the
comptroller to allocate to the State Highway Fund one-half of the amount
of general revenue derived from oil and gas production taxes that currently
is transferred to the rainy day fund. Revenue transferred in this way could
be used only for constructing, maintaining, and acquiring rights of way for
public roadways other than toll roads.
The 83rd Legislature proposed the measure, which will appear on the
ballot as Proposition 1, by adopting SJR 1 by Nichols during its Third
Called Session last summer. If approved by voters, the amendment would
take effect when the official vote canvass confirms statewide majority
approval. The governor must canvass statewide election results 15 to 30
days after the election.
To read more on the Pros & Cons of this Amendment, CLICK HERE.
Many of you may have seen a recent newsletter from Texans for Fiscal Responsibility concerning the Travis County indictment against Governor Rick Perry.
Why the indictment? The governor vetoed funding going to the Travis County District Attorney’s Office after demanding that DA, Rosemary Lehmberg, resign. Governor Perry’s actions were the result of Travis County DA, Rosemary Lehmberg being arrested for drunk driving.
In this newsletter from Texans for Fiscal Responsibility, it states that Conservative lawmakers tried legislatively to move the Public Integrity Unit (PIU) from Travis County to the office of the Attorney General. However, 18 Republicans joined forces with Democrats. Here is list of these Repulicans. You will notice State Representative David Simpson is listed.
?Read entire article here.
STATE REPRESENTATIVE DAVID SIMPSON HAS PROVIDED AN EXPLANATION FOR HIS VOTE.
PLEASE READ BELOW.
Never rush to judgement until you hear
“the rest of the story”…
Read online here
August 19, 2014
Since Governor Perry’s indictment by a Travis County grand jury, I have received inquiries as to why I voted against an amendment that was intended to move the Public Integrity Unit (PIU) from the Travis County District Attorney’s office to the Office of Attorney General. When I was first elected to the Legislature, I was advised to do the right thing and then explain it. Here is the explanation:
During the 83rd Legislature the District Attorney for Travis County was arrested for drunk driving and exhibited reprehensible behavior. In many cultures the public shame of such actions would result in an official’s voluntary resignation. There is however, no mechanism for the legislature to force the resignation of a locally elected official who has lost the public’s trust. That did not stop members of the legislature from trying.
Senate Bill 219, a bill which dealt with the Texas Ethics Commission and was vetoed by the Governor, presented the opportunity for a political statement through an amendment to “transfer the duties and responsibilities of the Public Integrity Unit of the Travis County district attorney’s office to the office of the attorney general.”
The problem with the amendment was that the PIU is merely an organizational division within the office of the District Attorney. Travis County like the other 253 counties in the State, derive their authority to prosecute criminal violations from the Texas Constitution. The Attorney General has no such authority and the amendment would not have conferred it to him. Only a constitutional amendment can do so.
As written, the amendment would have charged the Texas Ethics Commission (currently accused of abusing its authority) with creating a plan to move the duties and responsibilities of the PIU from Travis County to the office of attorney general. It would have required implementation of the plan to be carried out in a matter of months without further statutory authority, thereby circumventing both the Texas Constitution and statutes. In other words, the amendment required the Commission to do what it has no authority to do.
I voted against the measure because: (1) it was unconstitutional and (2) fraught with unintended consequences.
It perplexes me that the same people who are decrying the actions of the Ethics Commission are also questioning the votes of members who opposed granting the Commission an unconstitutional task.
Beyond my vote on the amendment, although I believe the Governor’s public threats were imprudent, they alone do not appear to be a crime. He was threatening a legal and constitutional action, if the District Attorney did not take a legal action-resignation. If this is ruled a crime, it will certainly dampen political debate among lawmakers.
That being said, I disagree with the Governor’s decision to line-item veto the funding for the Public Integrity Unit based on the refusal of the District Attorney to resign. And while I do think that Governor Perry was completely within his authority to veto the funding, I believe the situation could have been handled differently.
The indictment of Governor Perry may appear to be vindictive and politically motivated based merely on public statements. If there is no more evidence than what is public, the indictment seems to me to be a misuse of the justice system for political purposes-much like the intent of the politically charged and unconstitutional amendment.
“[N]either the wisest constitution nor the wisest laws will secure the liberty and happiness of a people whose manners are universally corrupt.” – Samuel Adams, Essay in The Public Advertiser, 1749
For Texas and Liberty,
October 6, 2014 Monthly Meeting
Longview First Church of the Nazarene
2601 H.G. Mosley Pkwy., Longview
7:00 to 8:30 p.m.
GUEST SPEAKER: JoAnn Fleming, Executive Director of Grassroots American We The People in Tyler and a leader in the constitutional conservative movement for twenty-two years, JoAnn is the two-term Chair of the Texas Legislature’s TEA Party Caucus Advisory Committee.
TOPIC: Status of Texas Races for the November 2014 Mid-term elections
SATURDAY OCTOBER 18TH
WE THE PEOPLE-LONGVIEW ANNUAL TEA PARTY EVENT 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Gregg County Courthouse Lawn, 101 E. Methvin, Longview
CONFIRMED SPEAKER: REV. RAFAEL CRUZ, Father of U.S. Senator Ted Cruz
The Life Liberty & Property Tour – currently touring all across Texas
The radical liberal agenda threatens to change the state of Texas and destroy our conservative values and principles. Take the jeopardy out of Texas’ future: Be informed and get involved, while you still can make a difference! Our coalition has joined together to voice the concerns that threaten Texans’ Life, Liberty, and Property. Join us for a no-holds-barred local Town Hall meeting near you!
The ACLU is taking action to have the Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial Cross removed. Liberty Institute continues the fight against ACLU to keep this Memorial Cross. It is incomprehensible that this could happen in the United States of America. The Veterans represented by this Memorial Cross are the very same heroes who fought to protect this country and our freedoms!
While the Supreme Court declined to hear arguments in the Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial Cross case at this time, it left the door open to reconsider the case in the future. Now, the fate of the cross rests with the federal district court in San Diego, and Liberty Institute is getting ready for the fight ahead.
The outcome of this case will affect not only this veterans memorial, but also thousands of others across the nation. The fight for our religious liberties is now more important than ever. If the ACLU can force the government to tear down the Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial Cross, where will they stop? What will happen to the 20-foot Canadian Cross of Sacrifice or the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery?
- The Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial has stood since 1954 as a symbol of the selfless sacrifice and service of our nation’s military. The memorial is a 29-foot Latin cross surrounded by six concentric walls that display the photos, names and diverse religious symbols of our veterans who paid the ultimate price for freedom.
- For more than 20 years, this veterans memorial has been the subject of a lawsuit brought about by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which claims the memorial’s cross violates the “separation of church and state.” In January 2011, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit ruled that the cross is unconstitutional.
- In February 2012, on behalf of our client, the Mt. Soledad Memorial Association (MSMA), Liberty Institute filed a petition with the U.S. Supreme Court seeking to have the 9th Circuit decision overturned. In March 2012, the U.S. Department of Justice also joined the appeal.
- On June 25, 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court denied the petitions to hear oral arguments in the case at that time. As part of the denial, Justice Alito issued a statement saying that the court’s denial was not a ruling on the merits and that the court may reconsider the case after the district court issues its final order determining the fate of the memorial.
- In July 2012, the U.S. Department of Justice and the ACLU advised the district court that they were entering into settlement negotiations without the participation of the MSMA. The ACLU then sought to have the MSMA removed from participating any further in the case as a party. However, in October 2012, the federal district court judge rejected the ACLU’s attempt to remove the MSMA from the case, granting their request to intervene as a party.
MCALLEN, Texas—Breitbart Texas invited a team of Texas grassroots leaders to tour the Texas-Mexico border. The tour began on Friday, July 25, 2014 and concluded on Sunday, July 27, 2014.
The purpose of the trip was to highlight holes in border security in the Laredo and Rio Grande Valley Border Patrol. During the trip, Border Patrol agents in the National Border Patrol Council shared their firsthand experiences with the grassroots leaders in hopes of affecting change for the conditions of the men and women in the U.S. Border Patrol who are protecting the specific sectors.
Breitbart Texas Managing Director Brandon Darby, who organized the tour, described the intentions and plans of the group’s effort. “The federal government, the State of Texas, and the media have presented a picture that the increase in security in the Rio Grande Valley sector is somehow representative of an increase in security along all of Texas’ border with Mexico,” Darby said. “The Laredo sector is the next sector over and it is largely wide open. We wanted grassroots leaders to witness for themselves what the reality is and we wanted them to feel what the often solo agents feel out there along the river.” Continue reading here from Breitbart.com
This month I have been down to the Texas-Mexico border three different weekends. My nights patrolling the border, talking in depth with Border Patrol, DPS, Texas Rangers, ICE agents, and people in the area have helped bring a few things into focus for me. Namely – we must secure the border and enforce the law of the land.
Unlike the editorial board at The Longview News Journal, the majority of Americans understand compassion is not encouraging a President to continue luring children to this country through horrific dangers transported by drug cartel employees from countries where crime has not spiked. It actually takes courage to stand up to demeaning name-calling simply because of beliefs in treating everyone impartially.
Make no mistake; most of the children crossing the border are male and teenagers or adults, while the smaller percentage of “unaccompanied” younger children are brought by someone, though they may step aside once here. Let’s reunite them as families and return them home to show the benefit of following the law.
There is a common mistake made by caring Christians in thinking that the duty of a government and the duty of a Christian individual are the same. They are quite different, and the differences are critical.
If a government turns the other cheek, is meek in the face of attack or threat to its citizens’ way of life, then the people in that nation suffer. The government must follow its own laws fairly and impartially so that it does not encourage lawlessness. If all of the children of the world who are not fairly treated were encouraged to flee to the United States, there would be no United States worth fleeing to. The government must protect its borders, just like the walls of Jerusalem were to protect those within.
A Christian should love his neighbor. A government must force his neighbor to comply with its laws. Christians should not put others in fear, but government is different: “If you do evil, be afraid because God does not give the sword to the government in vain.” (Romans 13:4) A good neighbor government would help force an end to the reign of the drug cartels in neighboring countries so people do not feel a desire to flee.
The drug cartels are largely responsible for the transport of people to and across our border illegally. A Border Patrolman told me that most people say, “We are fleeing violent gangs.” However, when he challenges then as a Hispanic in forceful Spanish, “You and I both know the gangs were paid to bring you here; you’re not escaping gangs,” they say, ‘You’re right, but we were told to say that.” Additionally, Border Patrol officers tell me the number of SIA’s (Special Interest Aliens from countries with significant terrorism) has skyrocketed. That is borne out by official numbers.
Marine Corps Gen. John Kelly’s (commander of the United States Southern Command) testified before Congressional committees this year of the dramatic security threats to the United States from criminal networks and terrorist organizations penetrating our southern border, stating that they pose ‘an existential threat to the United States.’ A primary duty of your federal government is to provide for the common defense against such.
NEWS FROM U.S. SENATOR TED CRUZ
As I toured the border in the Rio Grande Valley and met with border officials this past week, one thing remained clear – we must secure the border.
This week I introduced legislation that would stop Obama’s Amnesty, reform existing human trafficking laws, and also give Texas leaders more tools to protect our state.
Please keep reading for a further update on the latest in the Senate.
All the best,
CONTINUE READING & WATCH INTERVIEW ON FOX NEWS SUNDAY…
IN 5-4 DECISION, SUPREME COURT SIDES WITH HOBBY LOBBY
Read Supreme Court Ruling Here.
(Justice Alito authored the Majority Opinion of the Court)
SENATOR TED CRUZ: Landmark Victory for Religious Liberty
Statement on Burwell v. Hobby Lobby
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, today released the following statement commending the Supreme Court’s decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby.
“Today the Supreme Court handed our nation a landmark victory for religious liberty. The decision affirms that Americans, contrary to what the Obama Administration attempted to impose, have a right to live and work in accordance to their conscience and can’t be forced to surrender their religious freedom once they open a business.
“This ruling is a repudiation of the Obama Administration’s untenable position that people with sincerely held religious beliefs should be forced to comply with an unconstitutional mandate while a parade of waivers, exemptions, and delays are granted for purely commercial and political interests.
“In making this ruling the Court relied on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which was passed with broad bipartisan support, proving the strength and necessity of the legislation and showing the nation the effectiveness members of Congress can have when they work together to protect religious liberty.
“Certainly, the struggle for religious freedom will continue, as cases made by hundreds more plaintiffs will wend their way through the courts. The right to religious liberty, as enshrined in the First Amendment, remains under an incredible assault by this Administration on a variety of fronts. But, with this decision, I am hopeful that the courts will also work to safeguard the religious liberty for non-profits, such as the Little Sisters of the Poor and others, just as the Supreme Court did today for private businesses.”
Wall Street Journal
Supreme Court Exempts Some Companies From Health-Care Law on Religious Grounds
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday in a 5-4 split said “closely held” companies can on religious grounds opt out of a federal health-care law requirement that companies provide contraception coverage for employees, carving another piece from President Barack Obama’s signature domestic achievement. In a ruling by Justice Samuel Alito, the court’s five conservative justices wrote that private companies, such as Hobby Lobby Stores Inc., can’t be forced to provide contraceptive health services that violate their owner’s religious beliefs.
Supreme Court Backs Hobby Lobby In Contraceptive Mandate Challenge
Justice Samuel Alito wrote the majority opinion in the ObamaCare case. The court’s four liberal justices dissented. The court stressed that its ruling applies only to corporations that are under the control of just a few people in which there is no essential difference between the business and its owners. Alito also said the decision is limited to contraceptives under the health care law. “Our decision should not be understood to hold that an insurance-coverage mandate must necessarily fall if it conflicts with an employer’s religious beliefs,” Alito said (6/30).
The Political Insider
In a stunning upset to President Barack Obama, the Supreme Court rejected the argument that employers must be forced to pay for contraceptives, regardless of religious and moral beliefs.
The justices’ 5-4 decision Monday is the first time that the high court has ruled that profit-seeking businesses can hold religious views under federal law. And it means the Obama administration must search for a different way of providing free contraception to women who are covered under objecting companies’ health insurance plans.
TEXAS GRASSROOTS GROUP DEMANDS STATE OFFICIALS ACT ON BORDER CRISIS
East Texas (Tyler) – In a statewide press release, Grassroots America, one of the largest conservative organizations in Texas, called on Governor Rick Perry, Lt. Governor David Dewhurst, Attorney General Greg Abbott, and House Speaker Joe Straus to immediately address rising concerns among Texans that there is no visible sense of business urgency from state leaders to prepare the state and local communities for the effects of unrestricted and increasing illegal border crossings into Texas.
DOCTOR: RISK OF DISEASES BROUGHT BY MIGRANTS NOT BEING TAKEN SERIOUSLY…
HOUSTON, Texas–Earlier this week Breitbart Texas reported on a confirmed case of the Swine Flu, or H1N1, at a facility for young migrants in San Antonio, Texas. Dr. Elizabeth Lee Vliet–an experienced physician and nationally recognized speaker–told Breitbart Texas that the risks from such diseases being brought over the border are being dramatically downplayed. READ MORE…
WATCH INTERVIEW WITH U.S. CONGRESSMAN LOUIE GOHMERT ON THE BORDER CHAOS
WATCH INTERVIEW WITH GREG ABBOTT, TEXAS ATTORNEY GENERAL AND GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE ON BORDER CRISIS
Attorney General Greg Abbott participates in border surge briefing, visits Customs & Border Protection Station
EXCLUSIVE VIDEO OF DRUG CARTELS CROSSING SOUTHERN BORDER
(from Fox News – The Kelly Files).
PETITION: REQUEST FOR IMMEDIATE TEXAS BORDER CONTROL
Petition Background (Preamble):
Due to the recent influx of illegal immigrants crossing our Texas/Mexico border and the lack of border patrol and control, the taxpayers of Texas are demanding that immediate action be taken by our state government to protect our state and citizens.
We are requesting a special legislative session be called immediately by Governor Perry to request the legislature allocate funds to protect our border. Texas taxpayers spent over $12 billion in 2013 for costs associated with illegal immigrants.
The current immense invasion of over 1,000 illegal immigrants per day crossing our borders presents a public safety risk, public health risk and a reprehensible financial strain on the Texas taxpayers.
To sign and read entire Petition, CLICK HERE…
ON THE TEXAS-MEXICO BORDER: The View From The Front Line…
>Drug cartels are helping would-be immigrants cross the border.
>Border officials: 3 of 4 people crossing the border are from countries other than Mexico.
>State lawmaker: “Texas is not waiting for Washington to act.”
How Obama’s Central American Policy Contributed to the Surge of Children at the Border
IMMIGRATION REFORM NEWS AND IMPACT ON U.S. HOMELAND SECURITY
(From Right Side News)
To receive up-to-date info on the border crisis, visit Breitbart Texas and The Texas Border Volunteers websites.
Gov. Perry, Lt. Gov. Dewhurst and Speaker Straus Direct DPS to Immediately Begin Law Enforcement Surge Operations Along Texas-Mexico Border
Gov. Rick Perry, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and Speaker Joe Straus today directed the Texas Dept. of Public Safety (DPS) to immediately begin law enforcement surge operations on the Texas-Mexico border to combat the flood of illegal immigration into the state in the absence of adequate federal resources to secure the border. State leaders have authorized DPS to fund border security operations at approximately $1.3 million per week.
“Texas can’t afford to wait for Washington to act on this crisis and we will not sit idly by while the safety and security of our citizens are threatened,” Gov. Perry said. “Until the federal government recognizes the danger it’s putting our citizens in by its inaction to secure the border, Texas law enforcement must do everything they can to keep our citizens and communities safe.”
In a joint letter to DPS Director Steve McCraw, state leaders authorized DPS to conduct law enforcement surge operations using any funds appropriated to the agency. DPS surge operations will continue at least through the end of the calendar year. DPS must periodically report the results of the law enforcement surge to the governor and the legislature.
“The federal government has abdicated its responsibility to secure the border and protect this country from the consequences of illegal immigration, but as Texans we know how to lead in areas where Washington has failed,” Lt. Gov. Dewhurst said. “Last year DPS conducted Operation Strong Safety and achieved astounding results. Crime rates related to drugs, cartels, transnational gangs, and illegal border activity plummeted because of the resources we allocated to stop illegal entry at the border. It’s time to make this type of presence on the border permanent.”
The U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (USCBP) has apprehended more illegal immigrants in the Rio Grande Valley in the first eight months of the current federal fiscal year (over 160,000) than it did for all of fiscal year 2013 (154,453). In May 2014 alone, USCBP reported apprehending more than 1,100 illegal immigrants per day in the Rio Grande Valley. This year, like last year, more than half of the individuals apprehended at the Texas-Mexico border by USCBP are from countries other than Mexico. Additionally, 34,000 unaccompanied alien children (UAC) have been apprehended in Texas so far this year, with estimates that number will reach 90,000 by the end of the fiscal year. By comparison, 28,352 UAC were apprehended in fiscal year 2013.
“In this current security and humanitarian crisis, the federal government’s failure to secure our border is resulting in serious consequences for Texas,” Speaker Straus said. “To immediately address these issues, today I join with Gov. Perry and Lt. Gov. Dewhurst to direct the Texas Department of Public Safety to use the appropriate resources to keep our state safe.”
Previous law enforcement surge operations in the border region, such as Operation Strong Safety in 2013, have proven effective in reducing criminal activity and violence associated with human smuggling and drug trafficking in the border region.
To read this on the Governor’s website, CLICK HERE.