LYNCHBURG, Va. — Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) announced on Monday morning at Liberty University that he has thrown his hat into the ring for president in 2016. Cruz has become the first candidate of either party to officially declare his candidacy.
Opening his speech by stating, “I believe God is not done with America, yet”, he began with his family and his connection to his faith as he provided a detailed story about his parents. His mother, who grew up in Delaware and became a computer programmer, while his father was a Cuban teenage rebel fighter that fled the chaos at the age of 18 to America. Moving along, he mentioned his family problems from alcohol abuse to marital problems until his parents had a religious awakening that helped find their faith. “There are people who wonder if faith is real, I can tell you in my family there isn’t a second of doubt because if not the transformative love of Jesus Christ, I would have been raised by a single mother.”
Cruz, the first to officially declare his candidacy via Titter Monday at Midnight, his announcement included a 30-second video of “I’m ready to stand with you to lead the fight, will you join me.” A day before, it was reported by the Houston Chronicle of his official announcement for the presidency will occur on Monday.
Mentioning many conservative principles, Cruz told an energetic crowd of students using ‘Imagine’ at the beginning of each sentence laying out what America would be like if he takes office, as each sentence drew many loud applauses. “Imagine instead of economic stagnation, booming economic growth…Imagine abolishing the IRS…Instead of the lawlessness and the president’s unconstitutional executive amnesty, imagine a president that finally, finally, finally secures the borders…Instead of a federal government that seeks to dictate school curriculum through Common Core, imagine repealing every word of Common Core…imagine a president who stands unapologetically with the nation of Israel…Imagine a president who says we will stand up and defeat radical Islamic terrorism, and we will call it by its name. We will defend the United States of America.”
Cruz mentioned Obamacare, as Monday’s anniversary marks its fifth year into law. Gaining national media attention for his 21-hour filibuster on the Senate floor, Cruz and his vocal opposition of the law led to a tense standoff between Republicans and Democrats. Liberty University is also known for filing a lawsuit once President Obama signed Obamacare into law. Cruz mentioned the failures since it was signed into law of “joblessness, millions forced into part-time work, millions forced into part-time work and millions losing their health insurance and doctor.” Cruz ended by repealing “every word of the Obamacare” come 2017.
Ending his speech, Cruz stated his full announcement with “God’s blessing has been on America from the very beginning of this nation and I believe God isn’t done with America yet. And that is why today, I am announcing that I am running for president of the United States…We will get back and restore that shining city on a hill that is the United States of America.”
A conservative shooting star and firebrand to the Tea Party coalitions, Cruz a first-term senator is seen as a figure who is outspoken, passionate and energetic of his conservative positions to fight against Washington’s status quo. Disliked by some of his colleagues due to his constant pushback against establishment republicans. In 2013, he is known for the 17-day government shutdown as many democrats and some republicans saw this approach of destroying the country due to his battle to defund Obamacare.
His early announcement now puts Cruz in the advantage as he can seize the attention of the tea-party coalition as well as the big donors. Debuting his campaign announcement at Liberty University, an evangelical university, Cruz is also looking to gain traction of evangelical voters with his Christian conservative message to cut through a crowded field. Evangelicals are looking into former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee as their contender as well as former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum.
Cruz, if he wins the nomination and the presidency in 2016 is set to become the nation’s first Hispanic president. Although Cruz was born in Canada, stated by the constitution, he is able to run for president since his mother is a natural born US citizen which meets the standards to run. If Cruz fails to win the nomination or drops out, Cruz will still retain his Senate seat through 2019.
Sadly, the 18 month investigation into the IRS targeting of conservative groups isn’t over, and it may be worse than anyone thought. A federal judge has broken loose more emails that the DOJ had surely hoped would never surface. The picture it reveals isn’t pretty. The documents prove that Lois Lerner met with DOJ’s Election Crimes Division a month before the 2010 elections.
It has to be embarrassing to the DOJ, which may not be the most impartial one to be investigating the IRS. In fact, the DOJ withheld over 800 pages of Lerner documents citing “taxpayer privacy” and “deliberative privilege.” Yet these internal DOJ documents show Ms. Lerner was talking to DOJ officials about prosecuting tax-exempt entities (yes, criminally!) two years before the IRS conceded there was inappropriate targeting.
Ms. Lerner met with top officials from the DOJ’s Election Crimes Branch in October of 2010. Although Judicial Watch filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the DOJ (Judicial Watch v. Department of Justice, No. 14-cv-01239), the DOJ coughed up dirt only on court order. Even then, the DOJ handed over only two pages of heavily redacted emails.
What’s more, the DOJ withheld 832 pages in their entirety. They revealed that Mr. Obama’s DOJ called an October 8, 2010 meeting with the IRS “concerning 501(c)(4) issues.” On September 30, 2010, the DOJ’s Election Crimes prosecutor emailed Ms. Lerner:
“Hi Lois-It’s been a long time, and you might not remember me, I’ve taken on [REDACTED] duties. I’m looking forward to meeting you, Can we chat in advance? I’m a [REDACTED]”
Ms. Lerner responded on October 2, 2010:
“Sure-that’s a good Idea [sic]. I have a meeting out of the office Monday morning, but will try you when I get back sometime early afternoon. You can try me at 202 283-8848.”
Documents from a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the IRS show that Ms. Lerner asked the DOJ whether tax-exempt entities could be criminally prosecuted. This May 8, 2013 email by Ms. Lerner went to Nikole C. Flax, Chief of Staff to Acting IRS Commissioner Steven T. Miller, who would later be fired by President Obama:
“I got a call today from Richard Pilger Director Elections Crimes Branch at DOJ … He wanted to know who at IRS the DOJ folk s [sic] could talk to about Sen. Whitehouse idea at the hearing that DOJ could piece together false statement cases about applicants who “lied” on their 1024s–saying they weren’t planning on doing political activity, and then turning around and making large visible political expenditures. DOJ is feeling like it needs to respond, but want to talk to the right folks at IRS to see whether there are impediments from our side and what, if any damage this might do to IRS programs. I told him that sounded like we might need several folks from IRS…”
Read more at Forbes.
Thirty-nine Republican senators introduced a bill yesterday that would prohibit the IRS from targeting conservative groups.
U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) and U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) today introduced S. 2011, The Stop Targeting of Political Beliefs by the IRS Act. Co-sponsors of the bill include Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Minority Whip John Cornyn (R-Texas), Republican Conference Chairman John Thune (R-S.D.) and thirty-four additional Senators.
Under current law, 501(c)(4) organizations, or social welfare groups, can engage in political activities on a limited basis so long as their primary activity is the promotion of social welfare. Last November, the IRS proposed new regulations that would fundamentally alter the nature of the activities that these organizations can engage in, limiting their free speech rights, and effectively forcing grassroots organizations across the country to shut down. The final regulations are due to take effect right before the 2014 midterm elections.
The Stop Targeting of Political Beliefs by the IRS Act, which also passed out of a House committee, would freeze the finalization of the rule for one year and restore the 501(c)(4) standards and definitions that were in place before conservative groups started to come under extra scrutiny in 2010.
“The proposed IRS rule is overly broad and would codify the IRS’ ability to attack certain groups, opening the door to further encroachment on Americans’ First Amendment rights,” Roberts explained. “It is clear the IRS has no capacity to regulate political activity without running roughshod over people’s fundamental constitutional rights. As a result, our legislation is very simple — we simply halt further action on the proposed regulations until the Justice Department and congressional investigations into the IRS actions are complete. We don’t need the IRS regulating constitutionally guaranteed free speech.”
Flake said on the floor that the number of public comments received on the rule is the most ever received by a government agency.
“Clearly, the public sees through the administration’s veiled attempt to squash free speech and shut down opposition to its priorities,” the Arizona senator said.
In my former Libertarian blindness I steadfastly refused to see that the government is working to save my soul. How could I have been so blind? According to such wise people as Nancy Pelosi, giving money to the government not only counts as good works, but is mandatory for a Christian to get into heaven. When your penny in the coffer sings your soul to heaven springs.
As a non-theologian (and thus woefully uneducated in proper Christianity) I always thought that it was my responsibility to help those in need. If I saw a man in need of a coat I should give him mine. Fortunately, I was wrong! I can give to the government and they will take care of those in need. Previously, I might have said that the government would steal from someone else in order to give that freezing man a bikini. I now understand that the government understands what that poor man needs better that I ever could. Obviously that poor man needs a bikini much more than a ratty coat that I might give him.
I have been repeatedly told by very important, and so obviously intelligent celebrities and politicians that it’s my Christian duty to give as much money to the government as possible. In fact, if I don’t then I’m not a good Christian! It is, of course, not actually my money and the government is being kind to allow me to keep as much as they do. Thank you Harry Reid for allowing me to keep almost enough money to pay my new health insurance premiums. Anyway, as they point out, Christ said to give unto Caesar what is Caesar’s. In Matthew it also says that you cannot be a servant to both God and money. If I keep my money, then I will invariably become a servant to it because if I want to keep it then I love it and love of money is the root of all evil. So, the government is saving me from temptation and evil by taking as much money from me as they can and forcing me to live on what is left, thus showing me the joys of frugality and the inevitable spirituality that comes with it.
I know that some Christians will tell you that faith alone will save us and that good works are not obligatory. The usual response to that is that faith will inspire good works and they go hand in hand and that faith without works is dead. It is fortunate that we may now count paying our taxes as good works. Our taxes pay to feed and clothe the poor and sustains those in prison, so I’m covered as to what Christ extols us to do. Yeah! I shall be a light unto the world by paying my taxes and may thus count myself a virtuous person. Frankly that’s much easier that volunteering and I can now pass by the icky homeless without feeling obliged to give them money. The government will provide for them.
This also means that I’m no longer obliged to tithe to my church. They just oppress the homeless by reading Bible verses while people eat in their soup kitchen and the government is much more efficient in taking care of people- as we all know. You me quote to me statistics that a higher percentage of funds given to private charities make it to helping the poor, but we all know that is just evil conservative propaganda- I heard so on MSNBC! All those greedy private charities just want to accumulate as much money as possible so they can oppress more people and live well off the guilt of others.
Another piece of conservative propaganda is that conservatives are more generous than liberals. This is terribly biased because it does not take into account the fact that we liberals freely give the government money (it’s theirs anyway) and that is our charity. To do otherwise would be withholding good from those to whom it is due and that’s just not very nice, now is it? We progressives are always pushing for more programs to help the poor, to give them more goods in order to help their self-esteem and so they can feel like valued members of society. People shouldn’t be ashamed to be on welfare for years on end. They’re still human beings and deserve the dignity of a shiny new phone- doesn’t everyone?
I used to worry about how I could help others, but now I can relax knowing that I’m doing my part just by paying taxes. It’s almost like hiring someone to go work in the soup kitchens for me. How cool is that? I also don’t have to worry that I’m helping in the wrong way, the government decides for me who are the most deserving to receive aid. All we need to do is stop claiming exemptions on our income taxes and start paying our fair share and the government does the rest. Can it get any easier than that? I can now sleep easy knowing that my salvation is being safe-guarded by the IRS and I’m not being inconvenienced at all.
Hedge-fund giant, SAC Capital Advisors is expecting its investors to pull out a whopping $3.5 billion from the firm, which will severely affect its market value going forward. Leading up to this, is a continuing insider trading probe into the company, according to people closer to the matter.
The company believes that the figure of $3.5 billion is just a preliminary number and the withdrawal could actually be much larger. The deadline for the clients to demand their money back from the company is on Monday. The hedge fund has received withdrawal requests for about $1.7 billion during the first quarter of this year.
Estimates show that the withdrawals could rise to nearly half of the firm’s remaining outside capital and increase the total withdrawal request to more than $5 billion. The firm, which was founded by highly regarded investor, Steven A. Cohen, has been returning gains from the previous 20 years. It is believed that the government investigation is having a heavy impact on the company’s reputation and investor confidence in the company.
Most of the company’s $14 billion in assets belong to Cohen personally or the employees of the firm. Mr. Cohen and other SAC executives might also consider turning the company into a family office that would only look after a wealthy family’s money and not cater to external clients at all.
Be sure to listen to the Podcast from the radio show I appeared on Wednesday night called, “The Truth is Out There”. We discussed Benghazi, the IRS, and the DOJ scandals, Barack Obama, the similarities with the Nixon and Obama administrations, and of course Red Knuckle Politics.
I discussed how we at Red Knuckle Politics want to be part of changing the culture and reaching minorities and the youth as well, which I firmly believe is crucial. We have to do more to attract the attention of these particular groups if we want to truly reach them and educate them. We need to start doing more things that they are interested in and start speaking to them, not at them. We have to go to them and speak on a personal level, interact, and engage with them. After we start doing certain important things, then we can truly begin educating and getting our conservative message out there.
Here is the podcast. Enjoy!
Barack Obama and his administration have faced harsh criticism this past week, but for good measure. They have showed their constant commitment to deceive the American people on many occasions. The administration is dealing with three different scandals that are simply not going away. Many on the left were even upset over the IRS scandal, but some still claim that none of these three are scandals at all. What? Really? Rachel Maddow of MSNBC stated, “All together the three “Nixonian” scandals are a giant nothing.” She ends one of her blog pieces with “Put a fork in the Benghazi story; it’s done.” Here is what she said on her show Wednesday night:
“The controversy surrounding Benghazi effectively “went away” yesterday, and given the latest information, it’s hard to imagine how any serious person could disagree.”
Well Ms. Maddow, it is very hard to imagine how any sane person agrees and continues to watch your show, but I guess it happens from time to time. Anyway, the liberal media continues to protect the President on all fronts. Sure they were upset at the DOJ going after the AP’s phone records initially, but they are back in the corner of Obama where they’ve always been. Still surprising that none of them ran up to hold his umbrella for him as he got rained on. Oh well, lucky for him he called upon the Marines to do this job. I mean he didn’t make the call in Benghazi, so he thought he’d make it up for it finally.
Let us dive into these scandals for a bit. We have the Benghazi story that was starting to come to light once again with the testimonials from the three whistleblowers. We have the Department of Justice over stepping their boundaries and obtaining the phone records of the Associated Press and then we have the IRS targeting conservative and Tea Party organizations. All of these were done prior to election time. This doesn’t surprise anyone as being a little strange? Seriously? You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to see the Obama Administration was doing all they could do to get re-elected, including deceiving and breaking the law. This is downright ridiculous. This was a violation of privacy, 1st Amendment rights and an overreach from our government. This shouldn’t be about party lines or political affiliations for people to see through this mess. The Obama Administration was covering up, lying, and abusing their power for political gain without a care in the world who was hurt in the process.
These three scandals just show the arrogance of power from Barack Obama and his manipulating ways of holding onto his most treasured prize, the Main Stream Media. They simply cannot get enough of this guy. They have wanted to bury Benghazi for eight months and done a decent job of doing so, but combined with the other two scandals; they are proving to be difficult to continue. It is amazing that they continue to fail to grasp the concept of Obama’s policies and what was going on in Benghazi and the Middle East. He wanted to help transform this area. His policies speak for themselves. He wanted to support the Muslim Brotherhood in Saudi Arabia and the entire Middle East, allowing them the opportunity for a revolution. The problem with this is that liberals and the media cannot see this. This was just one of the three major scandals. If it wasn’t a scandal or a cover-up, then why lie about it and change the talking points 12 times?
This brings us to the next one, which was the Department of Justice obtaining the phone records of the Associated Press. The Justice Department had secretly reviewed phone records of reporters and editors at the AP, apparently to find out who leaked information about a terrorism investigation. The AP had a story they were about to release in May 2012 about a foiled effort by Islamist militants in Yemen to try another underwear bomb, like the one a militant botched in 2009. This story was asked to be put on hold by the CIA because it would hurt President Obama and his foreign policy.
We then have the IRS scandal where they were going after conservative and Tea Party organizations. These groups were in the process of obtaining a tax exempt status as many organizations like this have, but because they had the words, “Tea Party” or “Patriot” on their applications, they were audited and put on hold. This was going on since 2011. This is a huge story because of what the Obama Administration knew and when they knew it. Many of us know how powerful the IRS is, but after this more people are fed up with the overreach and abuse of their power. To target and essentially attack groups that opposed Barack Obama is against the law. These groups were basically put onto an enemies list, although the brilliant and coherent Tamara Holder would certainly disagree:
There seems to be something missing in the reporting of these scandals though, which is why the IRS all of a sudden apologized. If you know anything about the IRS, it is that they simply do not come clean or apologize. Ever. Not without attempting to blame someone or something else first. This is again, just a little strange. The Benghazi story was finally getting covered by the MSM and then what do you know the IRS comes out and apologizes. After doing something and keeping it under wraps for two years? Then, Obama attempts to show he cares by accepting the resignation of IRS Commissioner Steven Miller when the guy’s term was up in 30 days anyway. America isn’t stupid Mr. President.
These are not adding up and the liberal media does not like it. We must fully understand why these were done and when they were done and we must grasp the implications of each one. Remove your blinders and step away from the Kool-Aid for a brief moment. Smell what Obama has been cooking and see if you truly enjoy the flavor. Do you really believe a President who says he finds out about these scandals in the same manner the rest of us do? Many of us were born at night, but definitely not last night. You can only stay on a sinking ship for so long when you finally have to pull a Rose and Jack. The S.S. Obama still has rescue rafts aboard, but their warning signals are on and people are finally starting to listen. This isn’t over. These are far from over. We will wait and see if history happens to repeat itself, but at least Richard Nixon had the dignity to resign. Then again, that happened back in 1900 and what difference, at this point, does it make?