Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Bellevue Breakfast Club - Dec. 3rd. "The elections and how the Republican Party moves forward."

From Lonnie Spivak:

Lonnie Spivak
Greetings Breakfast Club Members,

Looks like our desire for a Red Wave was met with near disaster, as we wrap up the mid-term elections. The GOP has failed to take the Senate, and has the slimmest of majorities in the House.

This month, I will be leading the conversation regarding the elections and how the Republican Party moves forward in Davidson County and nationally. Touch on Donald Trump's announcement and next year's Metro elections. This will be a lively discussion as we look forward to 2024. 

Please join me as we meet our our normal location, Plantation Pub. Located at 8321 Sawyer Brown Rd, Nashville, 37221. Our meeting will begin on Saturday, December 3rd, at 8:30 am.

Congratulations to Congressman Elect Andy Ogles, Rep. Dr. Mark Green on their victories. And a special thank you to Michelle Foreman, who ran one heck of a race, but came up a little short election day.

Have a great Thanksgiving,

Lonnie

 

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Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Metro Nashville School Board Approves 4 Charter School Agreement Renewals

By Jason Vaughn, The Tennessee Conservative, Nov 29, 2022 – Last Tuesday, four Nashville charter schools agreements were up for renewal at the Metro Nashville Public School’s Board of Education meeting. ... While all the school’s agreements were renewed by majority, none received a unanimous vote from the board members. ... According to the district’s director of charter schools, Shereka Roby-Grant, all schools received ratings of “meets or exceeds standard” in every category which is the highest possible rating.

TNReady test results show that Nashville’s charter schools outperform MNPS and other districts throughout the state. Eighth-grade students who graduated this spring from Nashville Classical Charter School had a combined English and Math success rate of 62% – MNPS had a 19.5% rate in comparison.

(Emphasis was added by the editor. To read the full article, follow this link.)

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Number of Tennessee residents on food stamps hits 19-year low

Liberals cry in anguish upon learning Number of
Tennessee residents on food stamps hits 19-year low
By Tom Gantert, The Center Square, Nov 25, 2022 -  The number of individuals receiving food stamps in Tennessee has dropped to the lowest levels since November 2003, according to data released by the federal government.

There were 786,502 people receiving food assistance in Tennessee in August 2022, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which recently updated its data on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

By comparison, in the wake of the recession of 2009, the number of people on food stamps in Tennessee reached as high as 1.35 million in the spring and summer of 2013. The number of people on food stamps peaked during the pandemic at 912,733 in January 2021.

The cost of the federal program has also dropped significantly. The monthly cost was $117.88 per person in August 2022 after peaking during the pandemic a year earlier at $336.18 per person in August 2021.

The state of Tennessee has updated its data on SNAP participation through October. The number of individuals on SNAP reached 793,968 that month.

Gov. Bill Lee did not renew a COVID-19 state of emergency in November 2021, which had been in effect for 20 months. Additional emergency SNAP benefits authorized by the federal government ended Dec. 31. The SNAP benefits cost per person was $256.66 in December and dropped in January to $166.82.

The state's unemployment rate during the pandemic peaked at 15.9% in April 2020 and dropped to 3.4% as of September 2022.

Tennessee's lower participation in SNAP bucks trends seen in other states. For example, Illinois has had about 2 million people on food stamps in 2021 and 2022 and that state's SNAP cost per person has increased from $220.04 in August 2021 to $250.03 in August 2022.

Lee also signed a law that took effect in May that added a work requirement to receive food assistance.

According to the Department of Human Services, "... most able-bodied people between 16 and 59 years old must register for work, participate in the Employment & Training Program if offered, accept offers of employment, and cannot quit a job. Able-bodied adults without dependents aged 18 to 49 can receive only a limited number of benefit months in 3 years, unless working 80 hours per month or otherwise determined exempt from the rule."

College students, in general, must be working an average of 20 hours per week to be eligible for food assistance, according to the state.

The number of households receiving food assistance in Tennessee has dropped to the lowest levels since December 2007.

There were 398,078 households receiving SNAP benefits in August 2022. It was the first time in 15 years the number of households on food stamps had dropped below 400,000.

State Sen. Jack Johnson's office and the Tennessee Department of Human Services weren't able to provide comment prior to the Thanksgiving holiday.

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Report: Tennessee is 31st highest in average retail price for electricity

 By Jon Styf, The Center Square, Nov 28, 2022 -  Tennessee ranked 13th in total retail sales of  electricity and was 31st in average retail price, according to new data from 2021 released recently by the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

The state also ranked 21st in summer megawatt capacity and was 11th in direct use.

Tennessee’s average price was 9.78 cents per kilowatt hour, compared to the national average of 11.1.

In 2020, Tennessee was 22nd in energy consumption per capita while being 41st in electricity prices and 35th in the cost of natural gas.

The Tennessee Valley Authority is the largest public power corporation in the country, generating 90% of the state’s electric generating capacity and three-fifth of its power plants.

TVA is federally owned and serves 10 million by providing electricity to 153 local power companies. TVA said that natural gas prices were 141% higher in June 2022 than June 2021 but TVA’s effective power rate, inclusive of fuel cost, is only 11% higher than a year before.

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Saturday, November 26, 2022

Nashville DA Glenn Funk rejects $354,000 in state money for DUI prosecutions, refuses to say why

 Nashville DA Glenn Funk rejects $354,000 in state money for DUI prosecutions, refuses to say why

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Student Loan Pause Could Cost $275 Billion. Major beneficiaries are the wealthier. New doctors receive almost ten times the benefit of the average borrower

Commitee for a Responsible Federal Budget, Nov. 22, 2022- The Department of Education announced it would extend the pause to the sooner of 60 days after resolution of the student debt cancellation litigation or 60 days after June 30, 2023 (which would be the end of August, based on our understanding). An extension to the end of August 2023 would cost $40 billion, bringing the total cost of the pause to $195 billion.

Recent reports suggest the Biden Administration plans to once again extend the federal student loan payment moratorium – currently set to expire on December 31, 2022 – in light of court rulings against the Administration’s unilateral student debt cancellation plan. As we’ve shown several times before, extending the pause is costly, inflationary, regressive, and economically unjustified.  

The pause costs over $5 billion per month and extending it through the end of 2024 would cost at least $120 billion. This would bring the total cost since Spring of 2020 to $275 billion. This represents about 70 percent of the cost of the President’s announced debt cancellation plan and is higher than the ten-year cost of President Biden’s proposal to double the maximum Pell Grant by 2029. 


Extending the pause would also worsen inflation. We previously estimated the pause could add up to 20 basis points to inflationary pressures, which could lead the Federal Reserve to further raise interest rates and increase the risk of a deeper recession. 

As we’ve shown before, the benefit of the pause accrues disproportionately to those with advanced degrees. Should the President extend the policy through the end of 2024, the nearly five-year long pause would mean that a typical medical student who graduated in 2019 would effectively have $107,000 forgiven and a law school graduate would have $65,000 forgiven. That’s compared to the average borrower receiving $11,000 of forgiveness. Between 75 to 80 percent of the forgiveness would be from the pause itself and the rest from the effects of higher inflation on eroding debt. New doctors receive almost ten times the benefit of the average borrower and $107,000 more than someone who never attended college. 

The pause disproportionately benefits borrowers in higher-paid professions because people in those professions tend to borrow more and pay higher interest rates. Indeed, roughly 40 percent of debt is held by the 7 percent of borrowers that have over $100,000 of debt and 17 percent is held by the 2 percent of borrowers with over $200,000 of debt. Most of these borrowers have advanced degrees that lead to very high lifetime earnings; 16 of the 18 highest paying occupations in America are types of medical doctors and the other two are types of dentists.


Overall, the student debt pause is far more regressive than the President’s announced cancellation of $10,000 to $20,000 of debt. While we’ve estimated 57 to 65 percent of the President’s debt cancellation plan would go to those in the top half, it’s likely that well over three-quarters of the benefit of the pause goes to the top half (73 percent of repayments come from the top two income quintiles). 

It is also completely unjustified under current economic conditions. The pause began as an emergency when the economy was in free fall, the country was largely shut down because of the pandemic, and the unemployment rate was surging toward 15 percent. The unemployment rate is only 3.7 percent today and only 1.9 percent among college graduates. The emergency phase of the pandemic has long since passed, and most borrowers are actually financially better off than they were before the pandemic. The biggest threat to the economy is now inflation – which extending the pause would exacerbate.

Ultimately, continuing the pause would be expensive, regressive, inflationary, and unjustified. The pause has already been extended seven times – and the Administration has announced twice that it would come to an end. Reneging on this again will undermine the Administration’s credibility to cancel future debt, especially from the $250 billion of new federal student loans issued over the course of the pause. 

Regardless of what the court decides on the legality of debt cancellation itself, it’s time to restart payments. 

Emphasis was added by the editor. For more on this topic visit Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

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Tennessee's school voucher program wins court challenge

by Mariah Timms, The Tennessean, Nov. 23, 2022- Tennessee's contentious school voucher program in Nashville and Memphis can go ahead without court intervention, a three-judge panel ruled Wednesday. 

The program, which allows families in Nashville and Shelby County schools to use public funds for private school costs and tuition, has been in legal limbo since it squeaked past the legislature in 2019.

... "This controversy is merely a disagreement of public policy and inappropriate for judicial decision," the majority wrote on Wednesday. ... "The Court's decision secures access to additional educational opportunities for thousands of children in Shelby and Davidson counties," Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti's office wrote.

The Institute for Justice says it is the nation’s leading advocate for school choice and was joined by the Beacon Center of Tennessee in intervening in the case. (link)


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Thursday, November 24, 2022

Happy Thanksgiving!

 


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Wednesday, November 23, 2022

AIER’s Bastiat Society program in Nashville will host an in-person event with William J. Luther, Nov 29. "Why Are Prices So High?"

 

AIER’s Bastiat Society program in Nashville will host an in-person event with William J. Luther, associate professor of economics at Florida Atlantic University and director of the American Institute for Economic Research’s Sound Money Project.

Prices have risen rapidly over the last two years. Some claim prices are higher due to supply constraints. Others blame the Federal Reserve. Dr. William Luther assesses these two views and considers the likelihood that inflation will remain high well into the future.

Eventbrite Ticket Required. Register Here.

More about the speaker: William J. Luther is an associate professor of economics at Florida Atlantic University and director of the American Institute for Economic Research’s Sound Money Project. The Social Science Research Network currently ranks him in the top five percent of business authors. Luther has published articles in leading scholarly journals. His work has been featured by major media outlets, including NPR, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, TIME Magazine, U.S. News & World Report, Barron’s, Forbes, Fortune, National Review, The Guardian, POLITICO, and VICE News. He earned his MA and PhD in Economics at George Mason University.

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Monday, November 21, 2022

The proposed new Titans stadium would have 60,000 seats. Is that enough for a Super Bowl?

The Tennessean,  ... The 1.7 million-square-foot stadium design on the table would feature around 60,000 seats, about 9,000 less than Nissan Stadium and the smallest seating capacity in a National Football League stadium overall. The new stadium would also have around 5,000 fewer parking spaces. (link)

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National Review’s editors declare Trump “unworthy of the Republican nomination."

By THE EDITORS, National Review, November 15, 2022 -...A bruised Donald Trump announced a new presidential bid on Tuesday night, an invitation to double down on the outrages and failures of the last several years that Republicans should reject without hesitation or doubt. ... 

... the Trump administration was chaotic even on its best days because of his erratic nature and lack of seriousness. He often acted as if he were a commentator on his own presidency, and issued orders on Twitter and in other off-the-cuff statements that were ignored. He repeatedly had to be talked out of disastrous ideas by his advisers and Republican elected officials. He turned on cabinet officials and aides on a dime. Trump had a limited understanding of our constitutional system, and at the end of the day, little respect for it. His inability to approximate the conduct that the public expects of a president undermined him from beginning to end.

... he threw away two Georgia Senate seats in a fit of pique over Governor Brian Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger refusing to bend to his will. The resulting loss of Senate control allowed Biden to get trillions of dollars in spending that he wouldn’t have gotten otherwise and confirm large numbers of progressive judges.

... The answer to Trump’s invitation to remain personally and politically beholden to him and his cracked obsessions for at least another two years, with all the chaos that entails and the very real possibility of another highly consequential defeat, should be a firm, unmistakable, No. (read it all)

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Trump Blasts National Review

 By JACK CROWE, National Review, November 18, 2022 - Former president Donald Trump ripped into National Review on Friday, arguing that it is a magazine without any remaining influence in an official statement issued ....

“Why does anyone read the National Review. They are so negative to Conservatives and me, and are seen as being led by lightweights that couldn’t shine the shoes of Bill Buckley. They have absolutely nothing going, it is failing fast, and my only question is, who is paying for the losses — when it loses plenty of money and serves no purpose at all. People are tired of haters — let the National Review die peacefully!” the statement reads. (link)

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Understanding the continuing popularity of Donald Trump



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Saturday, November 19, 2022

Republicans need to embrace early voting, learn to "cure" and "harvest" mail-in ballots, and meddle in Democrat primaries.

by Rod Williams, Nov. 18, 2022 - Now that the dust has settled from the mid-term election, it is safe to say that Republicans "underperformed." There was no Tsunami, no red wave; there was barely a pink trickle. 

I am not disappointed. I did not want to see Republicans loyal to Donald Trump constitute a supermajority.  I put loyalty to our nation above loyalty to Donald Trump. I did not want to see people holding office who would only certify election results if their party won. I am pleased that the worst of the election deniers lost. I did my part to help achieve this outcome. For the first time in my life, I contributed money to Democrats. In several races, I sent money to the Democrat opponents of the worst of the Trumpinistas.  

While I did not want to see election-denying Trump loyalists take control of the legislative branch, at the same time, I did not want to see a clear Democrat majority that could advance the Biden agenda. What we got was gridlock. While the Dems control the Senate, not much legislation will make it past the Republican-controlled House to make it to the Senate. Given the circumstances, we got the best outcome possible.

Under normal circumstances, Republicans should have won big.  With an unpopular president, high inflation, a crime wave, a southern border out of control, an energy crisis, a pandemic response based on pandering to teachers' unions rather than public health concerns, public schools that dumb-down kids and indoctrinate them, and the still recent Afghanistan debacle, the Republicans should have easily taken back both chambers of Congress.  Instead, Republicans had the worst midterm performance of a party out of power in two decades, Where did Republicans go wrong?

I think the number one thing leading to this debacle is that the leader of the Republican Party is Donald Trump.  Not enough people wanted to vote for a party, whose leader tried to overthrow the government and prevent the peaceful transfer of power.  Also, Republicans had some loser candidates. Too many of our Republican candidates were conspiracy mongers and election deniers. Some were downright nut jobs. Trump's handpicked election-denying candidates underperformed horribly. I hope this Republican underperformance results in a diminishing of Donald Trump and the nomination of fewer nutjobs candidates. 

I think it was not only trump and Trumpinista candidates that are the reason for a poor Republican performance, however. There are other things that I think contributed to a Republican loss and these are things that need to be fixed.  Below are three campaign strategy changes I would recommend to the Republican Party. 

Embrace Early voting.

Democrats are more likely to vote early than Republicans. This is generally true but not universal. In Florida, more Republicans vote early than do Democrats. Forbes reports that among the states that report early voters’ party affiliations, 43% of ballots were cast by Democrats and 34% were cast by Republicans (1). I am unsure why Republicans tend to shun early voting but we should embrace it and get out the early vote. Instead of the twentieth email or text or US mail solicitation to vote for candidate X, some of those solicitations should be to vote for candidate X and vote early.

A vote cast early means that a voter cannot change his mind due to a last-minute political development, or cannot fail to vote because of work obligations, family obligations, accident, illness, or death. An early vote is a vote in the bank. Republicans need an early voting strategy.

Learn to live with mail-in ballots and engage in ballot harvesting and promote ballot curing.

I would like to see mail-in voting curtailed. While there has been no evidence of widespread voter fraud tied to mail-in voting, the potential is there.  In 2020 due to the Covid pandemic, many states liberalized their requirements for early voting, some without legislative action but in response to court orders. I support legislative action to roll back mail-in ballot voting and efforts to regulate who can pick up and deliver mail-in ballots. While trying to do that, however, Republicans need to learn to compete with Democrats for the mail-in vote. 

There are three strategies for winning the mail-in vote.  Republicans should encourage mail-in voting among eligible Republicans, should make sure Republicans take advantage of available ballot curing and Republicans should engage in legal ballot harvesting.

Republicans should target the Republican elderly and other Republican voters who may be eligible to vote by mail with advertisements informing them of the process and urging them to take advantage of it. 

Ballot curing is the process of fixing a defective ballot after it is mailed in. A lot of mail-in ballots are initially rejected because of failure to follow procedures. Rejected ballots could make a big difference in the outcome of a close election. Rejected ballots may be rejected because something like the signature on the outside of the envelope does not match the signature on file. This may be "cured." It may be as simple as filing an affidavit with the election officials that says something like, "Mrs. John Doe is the same person as Ms. Jane Doe." Democrats are much better than Republicans about checking to make sure mail-in ballots are counted and if not, contacting Democrat voters and telling them how to "fix" or "cure" a defective ballot. Republicans need to be as good as Democrats at this.

Ballot harvesting is the process of someone going out and calling on voters to collect from them the mail-in ballot they were mailed. I think this process should be banned or greatly curtailed. In my view, all mail-in ballots should be returned by US mail. Even if that is the case, there is still room for someone to knock on a door, help the voter fill out the ballot, collect it from them, and put it in the mailbox for them. 

The campaign worker doing this only calls on the people who are of his party. This kind of ballot harvesting works well in assisted living facilities and nursing homes. Democrats are much better at doing this than Republicans. Republicans need to get as good as Democrats at this form of campaigning. When you think about it, this is not much different than giving elderly nursing home voters a ride to the polls on election day.  You only give people of your party the ride. While Republicans may be squeamish about ballot harvesting, as long as it is legal, we need to be as good as the Democrats about doing it. 

Meddle in Democrat primaries.

Perhaps the most important thing Republicans could do to improve their chances in the next election is to meddle in Democrat primaries. 

In the Republican primaries prior to the 2022 midterm election, Democrats threw a lot of money into the campaign of the most Trumpinista of Republicans. They spent more than $40 million boosting the candidacy of six GOP candidates. These radical Trumpinista Republicans beat their more mainstream primary challengers and the Trumpinista Republicans won their primary. The strategy was to nominate the most easily beatable Republicans. It worked. The Trumpinistas won the primary and all six lost to their Democratic challenger in the General Election.  

While this practice may appear distasteful, Republicans need to fight fire with fire and play the game. Republicans should help the most extreme Democrats in Democratic primaries.  We should help nominate the most beatable Democrats. 

Now, this would not work everywhere.  There are Democrat strongholds where a candidate could not be too woke or too leftist to be elected. No doubt there are some urban congressional districts in college towns where a committed Maoist would not be too extreme for the electorate. There are districts, however, where the Democrat voters are not totally committed leftists and where a moderate Republican could beat a super woke, super leftist Democrat. In those districts, we need to nominate the worst Democrat we can find.

What would these candidates look like? It would be a candidate who advocates or has advocated defunding the police.  It would be someone who favors open borders, and pro-illegal immigration policies. Such policies as welfare benefits for illegals and giving illegals the right to vote, defunding ICE and Border Patrol, or tearing down the Trump border wall.  It would be someone who advocates a national law to permit unrestricted abortion up until birth and the government pay for the abortion. It would be someone who wants to forgive all student loans and make college free. It would be someone who supports what is called "gender-affirming" policies. It would be Democrats who do not shy away from advocating support for "democratic socialism."

In addition to the candidate taking these radical positions, the candidate needs to be on the record taking these positions so that in the general election, a graphic presentation of out-of-control crime can be shown along with a film clip of the candidate saying we need to defund the police, preferably before a cheering growd.  Or, the out-of-control border can be shown with the candidate advocating tearing down the Trump wall. There might only be half a dozen districts where this can work, but that can make a difference in which party has control of Congress. 

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Friday, November 18, 2022

Metro Nashville paid $120K for consulting services on Tennessee Titans' $2.1B stadium deal

By Jon Styf, The Center Square, Nov. 18, 2022— The Nashville Mayor’s Office paid Inner Circle Sports $120,000 over a six-month period for consulting services related to negotiating the $2.1 billion stadium deal between the office and the Tennessee Titans.

The report was released on Friday in a records request from Justin Hayes, an interested Nashville resident.

Inner Circle Sports is a subcontractor of Hilltop Securities, who holds a $750,000 contract with Metro Nashville. Inner Circle Sports’ David Abrams and William DiBlasi were paid the $120,000 for six months of work on the negotiations between last Dec. 27 and June 30. A contract or invoices for work beyond June 30 was not included in the request.

Both appeared before Nashville’s East Bank Stadium Committee to present the proposed deal, which includes at least $1.26 billion of public funding.

The contract stated that Inner Circle’s work was to "prepare a set of objectives for determining the appropriate level of investment and terms around the improvement of the existing NFL stadium to current NFL standards. ICS will assist Metro in developing parameters around which Metro may agree to tender, lease or sell property surrounding the NFL Stadium to the Team to further develop in accordance with an agreed upon set of project standards, risk allocation and expectations related to return on contributions."

Invoices said that Inner Circle held weekly video and telephone calls along with three trips to Nashville.

Hilltop, meanwhile, is under contract for independent financial analysis of bond sales and refunding, a commercial paper program and financial transactions and general financial advising related to bonds. (To view documents relevant to this story, follow this link.)

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The Federalist Society host "School Choice Post Carson: in Tennessee and beyond," Nov. 21st.

Braden H. Boucek serves as Director of Litigation at the Southeastern Legal Foundation (SLF). His cases at SLF focus on restoring constitutional balance, equal protection, the First Amendment, and property rights. He is an avid defender of America's Founding and a constitutional law professor. He has also actively litigated school choice cases. Prior to joining SLF, he served as Vice President of Legal Affairs at the Beacon Center of Tennessee, where he worked on economic liberty, dedicated himself to Tennessee's unique constitutional rights, and protecting the free speech rights of professionals.

Shaka Mitchell is the Tennessee Director for the American Federation for Children where he leads AFC’s campaign to increase educational choice across the state. Most recently as Rocketship Education’s Regional Director for the state of Tennessee Shaka was responsible for the planning, growth, and success of Rocketship’s network of high-quality, elementary charter schools in Nashville and Memphis. Rocketship now currently serves roughly 1,200 students across Nashville. Shaka began his career in education as the Associate Director of Policy and Planning at the D.C.-based Center for Education Reform. He then led outreach efforts at the Institute for Justice, a constitutional law firm based in Arlington, VA. Prior to joining Rocketship, Shaka was the Director of External Affairs for LEAD Public Schools, a network of public charter schools founded in Nashville, TN.

Event Details

  • Date: Monday, November 21st, 2022. 
  • Time: 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM CT
  • Location: Womble Bond Dickinson, 1222 Demonbreun St., 9th Floor, Nashville, TN, 37203
  • To RSVP: Click Here



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Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Why did Republicans do so poorly in the mid-term?

Q. Why did Republicans do so poorly in the mid-term?

A. In collusion with the Communist Chinese, the satan worshiping and pedophile Democrat insiders used a secret supercomputer that hacked voting machines and routed the data through Italy to Zurick Switcherland where votes were switched from Republican to Democrat. This was accomplished by the use of a program called "the Hammer" and a software program called "Scorecard." 

Q. Wow, that is some claim. What evidence is there of this?

A. Well none actually, but Repubicans lost and the only way that could have happened is if Democrats cheated. That is all you need to know.

Q. What if I want proof?

A. We don't need no stinking proof.  If you demand proof, you may be a satan-worshiping peodphile.  Are you part of the deep state?

Q. Well surely there is some evidence.  This is confusing. What facts to you have to support this claim.

A. No facts. Facts will only confuse you. You must accept it on faith. Make America Great Again! Make America Great Again! Make America Great Again!

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Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Only 53% of Glencliff High School students graduate.

 South Nashville High School Named Dropout Factory

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The midterm results are good for Republicans, if not great

 If Democrats have deluded themselves into thinking they won last week, that’s a huge opportunity for the GOP

by Erin Norman, The Spectator, November 15, 2022 - The dust is still settling around the congressional midterms, but it looks like Republicans will retake the House by a very slim margin and Democrats will have an ever-so-slight lead in the Senate.

But with stubbornly moderate Democrats such as Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema, Republicans can be fairly confident the upper chamber will not try to advance the most extreme parts of President Biden’s agenda, even if they do increase their majority by one seat in the December runoff in Georgia. And of course, because of the flip in the House, those uber-progressive proposals will never make it up to the Senate. ... if conservatives can look past the disappointment they feel from overblown expectations, they will see there is plenty of good news. They have control in the House of Representatives and hold the majority of gubernatorial seats. ... Republicans grew support among all minority groups: +4 among Black voters, +10 among Hispanics and an impressive +17 among Asians. 

... President Biden’s rush to claim victory despite objectively losing power and his belief that such a loss communicated approval of his agenda signals that no real post-mortem will be done on the left. President Biden will use this better-than-expected showing to rebuke his potential challengers who would carry far less baggage and bring more enthusiasm to the Democrats’ 2024 campaign. He will continue to play to the progressive wing of the party, push unpopular, if not flat out economically damaging, policies and engage in the divisive politics the American people have come to loathe.

For Republicans and their 2024 chances, this is where good turns to great. (Read more)

Rod's Comment: I concur with this analysis but would add that the primary reason the midterm was great for Republicans, is that it showed Republicans the way forward. It is better to learn this now than in 2024. Victory does not lie with Trumpism but with a return to traditional Republicanism. Trmpinistas lost; Trumpism is a loser. If Republicans will learn from this underperformance and nominate anyone but Trump in 2024 and reject candidates that cleave to the myth of the stolen election, a great victory awaits in 2024.

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Monday, November 14, 2022

The Republicans underperform in the Mid-term Comic Book

 








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Should the State ban drag show performances that may be viewed by children.

 by Rod Williams, Nov. 14, 2022- The Tennessee Conservative reports that Senator Jack Johnson has introduced a bill that would ban drag shows within the state if the drag show could be viewed by children.

SB03 “creates an offense for a person who engages in an adult cabaret performance on public property or in a location where the adult cabaret performance could be viewed by a person who is not an adult.”

Senator Jack Johnson is one of my favorite State politicians, but I would have to be convinced that there is really a need for this bill before I would be in favor of it.  

Female impersonators and drag shows have been around for a long time. This is not just a new phenomenon. On stage, men have dressed as women going back at least to the ancient Greeks.

Recently a friend of one of my siblings got married and at the party after the wedding a drag queen Dolly Parton performed.  They told me it was a hoot.  Children were present.  Should I have been present and that occurred, I would have likely enjoyed it also. I would not have run off in a huff.  

If my grandson would have been with me, I would not have shielded his eyes. He is almost four and super smart but he probably would not have noticed it was a man in drag.  If he was a little older or did notice, I would have just let it slide without discussion unless he asked about it. I just don't see the harm. While I would not choose to have that kind of entertainment at a wedding I planned, I don't want to prohibit it. 

While I think library funding should be cut for libraries that host drag queen story hours and while I oppose much of the push to normalize deviancy, we do not need to go overboard. While we should be vigilant in making sure schools are not pushing a transgender ideology or gay agenda, we don't need to go overboard in trying to make society puritanical.  I tend to believe that government should do less to police the morals of society; not more. If public funding is not involved, I favor live and let live. 

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Saturday, November 12, 2022

The Silver Lining of a Dismal Midterm Performance

By ANDREW C. MCCARTHY, National Review, November 9, 2022 -In the long run, the much-anticipated red wave’s failure to materialize may help the GOP wean itself off Trump.

From the start, smart Democrats spotted the GOP’s glass jaw in this midterm cycle, which I’ve described a number of times, including back in March, when the party’s Senate leader, Mitch McConnell, rightly blasted the Republican National Committee’s self-destructive decision to censure GOP representatives Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger for their service on the House January 6 committee:

Understandably, people’s time is mostly spent worrying about soaring prices, rising crime, failing schools, and the Biden administration’s overbearing-yet-ineffectual response to a now-endemic virus that our overmatched president foolishly vowed to “shut down.” On the rare occasion that Americans reluctantly find themselves diverted into renewed consideration of the riot, it is because Narcissus can’t let it go. The former president continues to peddle the “stolen election” tripe that fueled the riot. He still wields outsized influence over a Republican Party that lacks the self-preservation instincts to burn him. And he is toying with another presidential run. That means the RNC, under the thumb of Trump loyalists, can’t let “stop the steal” go either.

Democrats had a very good night on Tuesday, not so much because they succeeded in putting Trump on the ballot but because they expertly highlighted that the Republican Party chose to put Trump on the ballot by nominating the deeply flawed man’s preferred deeply flawed candidates. 

... Donald Trump cannot win the presidency again. He is popular in a number of places, but poison in most others. The former president will never again have what he’d need to win a national election: the reluctant support of doubters who, for the sake of stopping Democrats, were willing to take a chance on his flawed character. Had it not been for Trump’s bizarre post-election performance, culminating in the disgraceful Capitol riot, congressional Republicans would be in a position to stop Democrats right now. (Read more)

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Here’s how Donald Trump sabotaged the Republican midterms

By John Podhoretz, New York Post, November 9, 2022 - Hey, Lyin’ Ted and Sleepy Joe: Meet Toxic Trump. You know, if the former president had any self-knowledge or even the slightest ability to be self-deprecating, he might consider giving himself this alliterative nickname.

After three straight national tallies in which either he or his party or both were hammered by the national electorate, it’s time for even his stans to accept the truth: Toxic Trump is the political equivalent of a can of Raid. ... The surest way to lose in these midterms was to be a politician endorsed by Trump.  

Gibbs is an example of Trump’s monomania. A former official for Trump’s Department of Housing and Urban Development, Gibbs tweeted that officials associated with Hillary Clinton participated in Satanic rituals. But no matter! Gibbs believed the 2020 election was “stolen” from Trump, the only stance that matters to the former president.

Trump backed Gibbs in the primary to unseat a sitting Republican, Peter Meijer, because Meijer had the temerity to vote in favor of impeachment after the shame of Jan. 6.

Trump got his way. Republicans lost the seat.

This pattern repeated itself over and over and over again.

Toxic Trump’s pathological inability to accept his own failure — and his desperate need to elevate cringe-inducing boot-lickers while punishing politicians capable of an independent thought. (For more details on the winnable races Republicans lost but should have won read the full article at this link.)

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Trump Is the Republican Party’s Biggest Loser

By The Editorial Board, Wall Street Journal, Nov. 9, 2022 - What will Democrats do when Donald Trump isn’t around to lose elections? We have to wonder because on Tuesday Democrats succeeded again in making the former President a central campaign issue, and Mr. Trump helped them do it.

Trumpy Republican candidates failed at the ballot box in states that were clearly winnable. This can’t be what Mr. Trump was envisioning ahead of his “very big announcement” next week. Yet maybe the defeats are what the party needs to hear before 2024. ... In New Hampshire, the Trump-endorsed Republican Don Bolduc lost to Sen. Maggie Hassan, 53% to 45%, ... In Arizona the Trump-endorsed Republican Blake Masters trails Sen. Mark Kelly, 51% to 47%. ... In Georgia, the Trump-endorsed Republican Herschel Walker trails Sen. Raphael Warnock, 49.4% to 48.5%. ... Doug Mastriano, Pennsylvania’s Trump-endorsed gubernatorial choice, lost by 14 points. ...  he (Trump) has led Republicans into one political fiasco after another. (Read it all)

Rod's Comment: I agree with this WSJ editorial. While it appears Republicans will just barely take the house, it looks like we will likely lose the Senate.  As the editorial says this may be what the Party needs prior to 2024. I hope Trumpism diminishes and the Republican Party returns to its common sense, conservative values.  I want to be proud to be a Republican again. 

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Friday, November 11, 2022

TN Right to Life PAC Applauds Pro-Life Election Results

 NASHVILLE, NOVEMBER 11, 2022 - The Tennessee Right to Life Political Action Committee and pro-life Tennesseans are celebrating the outcome of Tuesday’s elections. 

Roger Kane, President of the Tennessee Right to Life PAC summed up the election results, “With the strong contingency of pro-life freshmen and the pro-life incumbents who were re-elected, the General Assembly will have a majority of members who are committed to protecting the right to life of Tennessee’s most vulnerable citizens.”  

The PAC endorsed 81 legislative candidates in the General Election (70 In the House and 11 in the Senate) and 76 of those were successful in their campaigns. Governor Lee was also endorsed by the PAC.

Kane touted the Governor’s strong stance, “Governor Lee has been a champion for life in our state. He signed the Human Life Protection Act into law in 2019, which, upon the overturning of Roe, ended abortion-on-demand in Tennessee. During his re-election campaign, the Governor publicly defended the law and made it clear that he wants it to remain as the legislature intended. He has emphasized his initiatives to assist women and their children and to strengthen Tennessee’s foster care program and adoption efforts.” 

“We are always one election away from the threat of our legislation being repealed, and we feel confident that, with this group of pro-life legislators, our pro-life laws are in safe hands,” said Will Brewer, General Counsel & Director of Government Relations for TN Right to Life.

“Tennessee Right to Life PAC appreciates the strong stand the candidates took in their campaigns.  Pro-life candidates stood boldly against abortion proponents who ran on a platform of unlimited, unregulated abortion and campaigned on overturning Tennessee’s law. When the votes were counted, the abortion agenda failed in Tennessee,” Kane continued.


Tennessee Right to Life looks forward to working with legislators and the governor to ensure that Tennessee laws represent Tennessee values and that the right to life of unborn children is respected and protected.


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Thursday, November 10, 2022

Fantastic news, the Right to Work Amendment 1 has passed!

Yesterday, Tennesseeans in all 95 counties voted in favor of securing our right-to-work laws in the Tennessee state constitution, guaranteeing all Tennessee workers the freedom to decide for themselves whether or not to join a union in their workplace.


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Odessa Kelly says her loss to Mark Green was due to "white supremacy" and "voter suppression."

Odessa Kelly
by Rod Williams, Nov. 10, 2022- In Tennessee's 7th Congressional District incumbent congressman Mark Green beat Democrat candidate Odessa Kelly by over a 20-point margin. Kelly said her midterm election loss was the result of "white supremacy" and "voter suppression." Kelly is a Nashville activist and a progressive affiliated with a group called "Justice Democrats."  

Just as the default position for some Republicans when they lose is "stolen election," the default position for some Democrats is "white supremacy" and "voter suppression."

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Monday, November 7, 2022

November 7 is National Day for the Victims of Communism


We remember the 100 million people around the world who have been killed in the name of communism in the past century. We remember communism has always been and will always be incompatible with liberty, prosperity, and dignity of life. We remember the dissidents and freedom fighters who stood in opposition to communism and courageously paid the ultimate price. On this day, we must remember.

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Poor performing Programs: The Tennessee university programs that leave students with the most debt as a percentage of earning.

From a Beacon Center study:

Tennessee public universities have 24 programs that leave students with higher debt compared to their annual earnings (100 percent DPE or greater). Ranked from highest DPE, the 24 programs that will leave students straddled with debt are listed below;


To view the full report, follow this link.

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High Costs and Low Earnings

JASON EDMONDS
BY JASON EDMONDS, The Beacon Center, November 1, 2022 - With President Joe Biden’s plan to use up to $1 trillion in tax dollars to forgive student loans, there is no more meaningful time than now to look at how public colleges and universities are serving students and taxpayers. Thankfully, the U.S. Department of Education publishes data on colleges and programs and their financial impact, or in other words, what is the debt a student takes on to complete a unique program and what can a graduate expect to earn three years after graduation.

With this data, we looked at how well Tennessee public colleges and universities are serving students and taxpayers. In our most recent report, Higher Education and Higher Debts: Which College Degrees Cost More Than They’re Worth?, we uncovered 24 programs that leave students with a median debt that is higher than their median annual earnings, resulting in graduates that would have difficulty repaying their loans. The worst-performing program in the state was the bachelor’s degree in anthropology at Middle Tennessee State University. This program had median annual earnings of less than $22,000 with the median debt being over $38,000, meaning students were taking on 178 percent, or nearly two times the amount of debt for what the degree would bring them in annual earnings. Across the state, there were an additional 23 programs that left graduates with more debt than annual earnings.

On top of leaving graduates with mountains of debt compared to their earnings, taxpayers were also shouldering the cost for higher education and the support of these programs, with billions of tax dollars a year going to higher education. In the last decade, Tennessee taxpayers’ investment in higher education has increased 28 percent after inflation, far outpacing tuition, federal funds, or other sources of revenue. Surprisingly—or unsurprisingly—higher education is following the same trend we have witnessed in K-12 education, with decreasing enrollment and an increase in administrative and professional staff. While student numbers have decreased around 15 percent in the last decade, administrative/professional positions have seen a nearly 30 percent increase, and increases were also seen in the number of faculty on staff.

There was some good news, however, as the vast majority of programs do offer a positive return on investment for students. At public colleges and universities across Tennessee, 72 percent of programs offer less than 75 percent debt compared to earnings, meaning graduates are making more than their degree cost and debt repayments would be manageable. Obvious trends existed in the best-performing programs, with healthcare, engineering, and sciences taking top spots. Registered nursing (RN) associate degrees were especially beneficial to students, with four out of the top five programs being RN degrees. The best-performing program left nursing graduates with less than eight percent of debt compared to earnings, or median incomes of over $51,000 and debt is less than $4,000.

This data gives a clear choice for prospective students, university leadership, and state lawmakers. For prospective students, they can now see what they can reasonably expect to earn—and pay—for a degree. For university leadership, this gives them the information to address which programs are not serving students and taxpayers, and for them to take steps to address that. For lawmakers, they can use this information to better align state spending with programs that will actually benefit students as well as taxpayers.

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Why I'm am not voting for Governor Bill Lee

by Rod Williams, Nov. 7, 2022- I am not voting for Governor Bill Lee.  Don't get me wrong, I like Lee.  I voted for him four years ago.  I like his policies, I approve of his priorities, and I believe he is a good man. So why and I not voting for him?

I am not voting for Governor Lee, because he will win in a landslide without my vote and the vote on Amendment One may not and Amendment Number One is important to me.  I am voting strategically.

Amendment One is the Right to Work Amendment. It would add to the constitution this language: 

It is unlawful for any person, corporation, association, or this state or its political subdivisions to deny or attempt to deny employment to any person by reason of the person’s membership in, affiliation with, resignation from, or refusal to join or affiliate with any labor union or employee organization.

I do not think one should be forced to join a union to have a job.  Mandatory union dues are often used to support Democrats and I am not a Democrat.  A person should not be forced to financially support a party or policies he does not support. This should be fundamental. There are other reasons to oppose mandatory union membership, but the requirement forcing one to support political candidates for whom one would never vote appears to me to violate a basic democratic principle.

Right to Work is already in place in Tennessee but it is not a part of the Tennessee Constitution.  Unions would like to see that right taken away and some future State legislature could take it away from us.  The Right to work is so fundamental, that in my view, it should be enshrined in the constitution.

There are three other proposed amendments on the ballot. Number two and four are housekeeping amendments and I support them also.  I have reservations about number three and will be voting "no."

So what does my vote on the amendment have to do with not voting for Governor Lee?  In addressing how the Constitution is amended, the Constitution says:

 And if the people shall approve and ratify such amendment or amendments by a majority of all the citizens of the state voting for governor, voting in their favor, such amendment or amendments shall become a part of this Constitution.

I think Amendment Number One will pass but the unions are opposing it.  The Tennessee teachers union represents a lot of people across the state, and Tennesee teachers have spouses, family, and friends. The passage of Amendment #1 is not a slam dunk.  

A certain number of people will go to the polls, and not have enough information about the amendments in order to feel they can cast an informed vote and they will simply skip voting on the amendments. So what happens?  Let us look at an example and assume there are only 1000 voters:

  • 1000 people vote for governor.
  • 900 people vote on an amendment. 
  • 499 in favor
  • 401 opposed.
  • The Amendment fails.

The Amendment fails because it did not get "a majority of all of the citizens of the state voting for governor." So what would have happened in the above example if 22 fewer people had voted in the governor's race but still voted on the amendment?

  • 978 people vote for governor
  • 900 people vote on an amendment
  • 499 in favor
  • 401 opposed
  • The Amendment passes
Governor Lee will win. Most people can not even tell you the name of his opponent. Lee does not need your vote; Amendment One does. 

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Saturday, November 5, 2022

 ACLU sues Davidson County, state over ballot issues; parties seek a fix for voters

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Is a Prison-labor ban a smart move? I am voting against Amendment 3.

By Chandra Bozelko, Wall Street Journal, Nov. 4, 2022 - I worked in York Correctional Institution’s kitchen for five years. I earned 75 cents a day for the first year, then got a raise to $1.75 a day. That job is the reason I’m alive. The work was menial, but it provided physical and mental escape from the Connecticut prison cell where I was serving a sentence for larceny, identity theft and improper use of a credit card.

A movement against prison labor seems to be gaining ground. The 13th Amendment outlawed slavery and involuntary servitude, “except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted.” The constitutions of 19 states have similar language. On Tuesday voters in five of them—Alabama, Louisiana, Oregon, Tennessee and Vermont—will decide whether to rewrite their charters to abolish that exception.

Colorado voters led the way by passing a similar ballot measure in 2018; Nebraska and Utah followed in 2020. So far these measures have had no effect on the state’s prison-labor programs, although litigation is pending against Colorado’s. If it succeeds, the state may have to pay prisoners minimum wage if they work at all.

Rod's Comment:  It appears to me that the same concerns expressed in the above article could apply to Tennessee should the voters adopt Amendment 3 in the upcoming election. I have not read anything to allay my concerns. I am voting "no" on Amendment #3. 

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Florida Bans Puberty Blockers and Transgender Surgery for Minors. Tennessee should do the same.

By BRITTANY BERNSTEIN, National Review, November 4, 2022 - The Florida Board of Medicine and state Board of Osteopathic Medicine voted Friday to ban puberty blockers and sex-reassignment surgery as treatments for transgender minors in the state. ... Florida is also one of at least nine states that prohibits Medicaid coverage of gender-transition services.

... More than 70 percent of children with gender dysphoria “typically outgrow” it, ... A clinic that offered gender-transition services for children in England was closed down after NHS England found it was “not a safe or viable long-term option.” (link)

Rod's Comment: We need to stop the mutilation of children and ban the chemical castration of children in Tennessee.  If Tennessee is not one of the nine states that prohibits Medicaid coverage of gender transition services, it should be. 


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Thursday, November 3, 2022

An unknown number of voters have cast ballots in the wrong congressional race in Nashville

by Rod Williams, Nov. 2 - According to the Associated Press, some Nashville voters have cast ballots in the wrong congressional districts.  Some voters in the 7th Congressional District were grouped wrongly with the 6th or the 5th. This mistake involved only one prescient and 1,350 voters live in that precinct.

In the 7th Congressional District, Democrat Odessa Kelly is running against Republican U.S. Rep. Mark Green. Green will most likely win in a landslide, so this error will not change the outcome. 

In the 6th, incumbent Republicans John Rose is being challenged by Democrat Randal Cooper but Rose is expected to handily win that race so this SNAFU should not impact the outcome of the election.

While the original AP story did not say the mix-up impacted the 5th Congressional Districts, other reports say this impacts both the 5th, 6th, and 7th. In the 5th, Republican Andy Ogles is running against Democrat Heidi Campbell.  If the race is close, no matter which way it goes, the losing candidate could claim that had people who live in the 7th not voted in the 5th, he would have won the election.

Mistakes happen and there is no provision for an election do-over. It can be determined which voter voted in the wrong district, but no way to know how they voted.  This is an unfortunate occurrence at a time when many Republicans do not trust election integrity and when Democrats think there was something inappropriate about the redrawing of district boundaries. 

Despite Republicans controlling the redistricting process and all affected counties having Republican-majority election commissions, many Trumpinistas are ready to believe the most far-fetched conspiracy theory.  Should Ogles lose by only a handful of votes, one can be certain that Trumpinista Republicans will blame the "deep state" and "insiders" for stealing the election. 

Democrats are loudly blaming the mix-up on redistricting. “This is the result of a racist, bigoted, money-hungry Republican Legislature who is doing everything to hoard power to keep the system rigged against everyday working-class people,” said Nashville resident Odessa Kelly, the Democratic candidate for the 7th Congressional District seat. (*)

I hope Andy Ogles wins this election, but whichever candidate wins I hope it is by such a significant margin that the election results are not in question.

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Bellevue Breakfast Club - Nov. 5th. Featured speakers Congressman Mark Green (TN7) and former Mayor Andy Ogles (candidate TN5)

From Lonnie Spivak:

Congressman Dr. Mark Green (TN7)
and Former Mayor Andy Ogles (TN5)

Greeting Breakfast Club Members,

It is hard to believe we have made it through two years with Joe Biden and his cabal "in charge" of the country. FINALLY we get our chance to send a message with a RED WAVE in the 2022 mid-term elections.

It gives me great pleasure to introduce our VIP speakers for our November meeting. Because Bellevue straddles two congressional districts with the newly redrawn lines, I am honored to have both Congressman Dr. Mark Green (TN7) and Former Mayor Andy Ogles (TN5) with us the first Saturday in November. 

Please join us Saturday, November 5th, 8:30am at  Plantation Pub, 8321 Sawyer Brown Rd., Nashville, TN 37221 as we welcome two great Tennesseans. I am sure there will be a lot of inside baseball as we head to Election Day.

Our friend Michelle Forman needs volunteers to help her get across the finish line. Please let me know if you have time to either knock on doors or make phone calls for her as we enter the final stretch.

Thank you all and I will see you soon.

Lonnie

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Rep. Susan Lynn's views on the Proposed Constitutional Amendments

Representative Susan Lynn
From Representative Susan Lynn:

 Hi there,

I have been asked for my views on the Constitutional Amendments that are on the ballot.

 Here is how I am personally voting on each,

 Amendment 1 - YES

Amendment 2 - YES

Amendment 3 - NO

Amendment 4 - YES

 Here is why I have decided to vote as I have,

 Amendment 1 – Simply adds the right-to-work to our Constitution. It is current law and Tennessee is a better state because we are a right-to-work state.

 Amendment 2 – Adds a process whereby the Speaker can step-in as acting-Governor should the Governor because incapacitated (such as with covid). The process includes a mechanism for him to resume his duties when he is again well.

 Amendment 3 – This changes language in the Constitution regarding prisoners. Our current Constitution makes it clear that inmates lose certain constitutional rights. This provision states that “Nothing shall keep a prisoner from working…” Right now, having a job if you are an inmate is a merit-based system based on good behavior and other positive factors. They are paid less than minimum wage. Some of their pay is held back in savings for when they exit the institution and some, they are permitted to spend in the PX. We do not have enough jobs for all inmates, nor the money to pay all inmates. I am very concerned that we will be sued by inmates demanding a job and demanding at least minimum wage. We provide every inmate with free room, board, and medical care…imagine if we are literally paying them a wage to be in jail.

Amendment 4 – This simply takes obsolete language out of the state Constitution that was deemed unconstitutional many years ago by a court.  

If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to reach out.

Sincerely,

Rep. Susan Lynn

Rep. Susan Lynn

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Wednesday, November 2, 2022

Congressman Mark Green's 4th Annual Fish Fry - A Salute to Our Veterans.

 Sat, November 5, 2022,
For more information, follow this link

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Tuesday, November 1, 2022

We should be better than Paul Pelosi conspiracy theories and better than blaming the attack on MAGA extremism.

by David Marcus, The Spectator,  November 1, 2022 - ... Democrats pounced, as usual, on their claims of MAGA extremism; meanwhile, too many on the right have indulged in disgusting conspiracy theories about the assault.

... Meanwhile, Charlie Kirk — whose organization Turning Point USA has made him one of the most influential voices on the right, especially among young conservatives — took to social media to ask a “patriot” to bail out David DePape, the suspected attacker, in order to get at the truth. Aside from this sounding a lot like Kamala Harris pitching for people to bail out 2020 rioters, it would put someone who seems to be a dangerous lunatic back on the streets.

Across conservative Twitter, though thankfully not in responsible outlets, all kinds of weird conspiracies about what DePape was doing at the Pelosi residence have been bandied about. Most share in common a vilification of Paul Pelosi and an absolute dearth of anything approaching actual evidence. The general attitude seems to be that these voices don’t trust the authorities, and are just asking questions, even if the questions just happen to paint Pelosi as some kind of sex fiend. This is not good enough.

Let’s be clear: the Democrat chorus that this attack is the fault of Donald Trump and MAGA extremism is ridiculous, as are their appeals for Republicans to stop running attack ads a week before the election. By all accounts, DePape is a deranged man and there is little to suggest that anyone is responsible for his behavior but himself. 

If conservatives adopt these despicable tactics, they will lose the war for our culture and society before a shot is even fired. You beat conspiracy theories with truth and facts, not by inventing more and more disgusting conspiracy theories of your own. (link)

Rod's Comment: 

I watched the Sunday news shows and all condemned the attack and laid the blame at the feet of the supporters of Donald Trump who, they say, created an environment where this is encouraged. This is BS! Hard-hitting political ads and strong rhetoric are nothing new.  I have been around a long time and I remember when Democrats ran ads against Barry Goldwater of a girl picking daisies and then a nuclear explosion occurred because that is what would happen if people elected Barry Goldwater the ad implied. You can't get much nastier than that and it has not stopped.

While I wish both sides would tone down the rhetoric, Dems have painted Republicans as warmongers and bigots and people who would push grandma over a cliff for as long as I can remember. Demonizing the other side is not a one-way street. Both sides do it. 

Following the attack on Paul Pelosi's,  mainstream newscasters almost all condemned political ads critical of Nancy Pelosi. Whichever party wins the House will pick the next Speaker, so certainly in every house race, Nancy Pelosi is on the ballot.  She is fair game. The ads I saw attacking Nancy Pelosi were reasonable and none implied she should be subject to physical violence. I remember when Dems ran ads against Mitch McConnell. 

While all people should condemn violence, Democrats have no room for self-righteous superiority. During the Antifa/BLM violence of 2020, police were attacked and injured and killed, millions upon millions of dollars of property damage occurred, and White people were at random beat simply because they were White.  In Antifa-controlled autonomous zones, people were murdered and women were raped and good liberals stood by and understood the outrage and sent money to BLM. Don't tell me it is Republicans that created an atmosphere where political violence is acceptable. This didn't start with Donald Trump.

Don't forget the atmosphere liberal activist and the Democrat Party lap dog press created after the Supreme Court overturned Roe vs. Wade.  An upset supporter of abortion rights tried to kill Judge Kavanaugh.  I did not hear libs call for moderating the outrage. 

I am dismayed at the nutty conspiracy theories circulating around this attack on Pelosi's husband and that some Republicans are implying there is more to it than what meets the eye.  I used to think Democrats were the party of naive gullible fools and the Republicans Party was the party of sane rational people. Not anymore.  I think there are more nut-jobs on the right than on the left these days.  Unfortunately, Alex Jones and Marjorie Taylor Green are now mainstream Republicans.  

(Rereading the above, I realized I used the term "fair game."  I am not implying that Nancy Pelosi is fair game as in legal deer hunting season "fair game."  One should not have to clarify that, and I am not going to make a habit of it. I am not going to be so aware of how someone else (some mentally deranged someone else) could misinterpret what I say, that I engage in self-sensorship of normal political discourse.  Saying things like a candidate is "targetted" or is "fair game," are acceptable expressions and are not a call for killing the person.)


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Term sheet sheds light on details of new $2.1B Tennessee Titans stadium deal. Download it here.

 By Jon Styf,  The Center Square,  Oct 20, 2022 -Members of the Metro Nashville City Council will be asked to approve a term sheet and legislation to enact a 1% hotel-motel tax starting Feb. 1 with its initial consideration of both to begin at the board’s Nov. 1 meeting.

The term sheet outlines plans for the projected $2.1 billion new stadium for the Titans, including the order of financing and how a fund that includes the hotel tax and sales tax at the stadium and outside the stadium can be used. The stadium is expected to be ready for the 2026 NFL preseason. The lease will be for the term of the bonds — about 30 years — with three five-year renewal options.

Download PDF

Nashville term sheet

The term sheet was presented to the Metro Nashville Sports Authority by Deputy Mayor Sam Wilcox on Thursday.

The terms include the state of Tennessee contributing $500 million, Nashville contributing $760 million from its Sports Authority from the sales and hotel tax fund and the Titans, represented by an entity that will be called StadiumCo, will need to prove it can provide $840 million from the sale of personal seat licenses, an NFL loan and private financing.

The deal states, however, that the team would not be required to provide full operational financial information or audit rights. A letter from Titans owner Amy Adams Strunk, explaining that she cannot provide a guarantee she will not sell the team due to NFL rules, was included with the term sheet.

"I recently learned that your team has expressed a concern about a potential sale of the Titans and proposed a contract provision to address that concern," Strunk wrote in the letter to Nashville Mayor John Cooper.

"We fully expect to keep the Titans in Nashville," Strunk wrote. "Thankfully, NFL rules do allow us to make that commitment as part of the deal, and we were happy to include it in the term sheet. Perhaps more important, I should add that throughout this process we have never considered the possibility of relocating the team."

 Download PDF

Letter to Cooper from Titans ownership

The $2.1 billion stadium cost will include the cost of demolishing the current Nissan Stadium. The Titans are responsible for paying off $30 million of bonds on the current stadium. The team has hired Manica Architecture, which build Las Vegas' Allegiant Stadium, to complete the project.

The sales and hotel tax fund will first pay for the sports authority bonds. The team will not backstop the bonds and the city will be responsible from its general fund for backstopping them if required. The team will pay $3 per ticket sold for non-football events into the fund as well as continuing to pay a $3 ticket tax for Titans games into the fund as rent.

The Sports Authority will sign a separate agreement with Tennessee State to use the stadium.

If the stadium project cost exceeds $2.1 billion, the team will have to prove why that additional cost is necessary and prove it has the additional funds to pay for it.

The new terms include a "first-class" condition requirement with comparison stadiums being Allegiant Stadium, Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium and U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. A similar requirement has been used to say that Metro Nashville would have to pay between $1.75 billion and $1.95 billion to fulfill its obligations in the case the Titans were to take a team option to extend their current lease at Nissan Stadium. To this point, the Titans have not exercised that option.

If there is excess sales and hotel tax following the revenue bond payment, it can be used to fund capital projects and maintenance at the stadium. If those funds are not sufficient for a project, the Titans would be responsible for the cost.

If the Capital Repairs Fund cap is met, excess funds can be paid up to $25 million to Nashville’s general fund and then excess would be sent to a reserve fund. If the reserve fund meets 120% of its goal, and the revenue bonds are paid off, Metro Nashville would then have the option of ending the hotel tax.

Download the PDF

Letter from Cooper Nashville

Metro Nashville VSG memo stadium
 Downl

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