Sunday, January 10, 2016

FW Newsletter: McCain's Election Year Conversion to Conservativism


John McCain Cares About Conservative Policies (When He's Running for Re-Election)

As we ring in a new year, we see members of Congress reinvent themselves quicker than Americans sign up for gym memberships. In Washington, in an election year, Republicans tend to adopt a conservative façade, only to wait until after November to show their true colors. Senator John McCain, for instance, demonstrated this behavior after his failed bid for the White House, following a dismal 69 percent rating on the FreedomWorks Congressional Scorecard in 2009 with an apparently conservative 96 percent the following year. After securing re-election, his rating dropped to as low as 48 percent.

“The problem with politicians being in Washington for so long is that they fall in love with the marble in the halls of the Capitol,” said FreedomWorks CEO Adam Brandon. “John McCain has portrayed himself as a ‘maverick,’ but the reality is that he’s just another establishment Republican politician who votes like a conservative only when he’s running for re-election.” Read more here...


Back Stage with the Candidates: Ted Cruz

BackStage RTS Cruz.PNG

John McCain and the Hatch Effect

- by Logan Albright

Question: When can you count on a moderate, establishment Republican to suddenly see the light and start voting like a conservative? Answer: When their job is on the line. This sort of last minute conversion to the cause of liberty 12 months before an election is known as the Hatch Effect, after Senator Orrin Hatch who exhibits this tendency with particular blatancy.

These days, however, there’s another senator who perhaps best exemplifies this phenomenon: Senator John McCain. McCain has been a fixture in Washington for decades, and while he constantly refers to himself as a political maverick, the truth is that he has been drifting closer and closer to the Republican establishment for many years. The District of Columbia seems to have that effect on lawmakers. If they stay in town too long, they wind up married to special interests and forget whatever principles they may have once had in their idealistic youths. Read more here...

If Janet Yellen Has Nothing to Hide from Fed Audit, She Has Nothing to Fear

Ahead of a scheduled vote in the Senate on Sen. Rand Paul’s Federal Reserve Transparency Act (S. 2232), FreedomWorks Legislative Affairs Manager Josh Withrow commented:

“If central bankers like Janet Yellen have nothing to hide from the American people, they shouldn’t fear transparency. We’ve long been supporters of the effort to audit the Fed. We’re excited to see this legislation, for the first time, come up for a vote in the Senate. We will, as we’ve done in past, key vote in favor of the Federal Reserve Transparency Act.” Read more here...

Senate to Finally Vote on Auditing the Fed

- by Logan Albright

On Tuesday, Sen. Rand Paul will finally secure a Senate vote on his perennially authored bill to audit the Federal Reserve Bank of the United States. This is a bill that has been offered by Paul, and by his father Ron Paul before him, every year since 2009, but this will be the first time the Senate has actually voted on it.

Why is this issue important? Most Americans may not realize the enormous role the Fed plays in the economy, or even know what the agency does. Here’s a quick summary.

The Federal Reserve Bank was established in 1913 to regulate the United States’ money supply. It does this in a variety of ways, but mainly by buying and selling treasury securities, a process known as open market operations. When people talk about the Fed changing interest rates, what they really mean is that the Fed is changing the money supply, increasing or decreasing the supply of loanable funds. Interest rates then respond to these changes in a way that is more or less predictable. When banks have more money to lend, they lower interest rates, when they have less, they raise them. This is how the Fed manipulates borrowing and lending behavior in the economy. Read more here...

Lesson of the Week
Peter Schiff sheds light on monetary policy, an important area of economics that few Americans actually know anything about. This lesson offers a crash course in how the Federal Reserve Bank operates, how it came to be in the first place, and how it has become more powerful and more dangerous over the hundred years of its existence. Read more here...

Monday's Supreme Court Case Could Strike Massive Blow Against Public Sector Unions

- by Marc Dupont

The Supreme Court made a ruling in 1977 prohibiting public unions from collecting non-member dues used for political activities or purposes. However, this did not bar them from collecting fees from non-members entirely. In fact, if the funds were to be directed towards collective bargaining efforts, unions were essentially granted the authority to levy these costs on non-members since collective bargaining was viewed as beneficial to all workers.

Fast-forward to this year, the Supreme Court is set to hear Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association (CTA), a case that looks to overturn the original 1977 ruling and deal a decisive blow to public-sector unions while protecting the First Amendment rights of non-members who refuse to pay union dues.

The case centers around 10 California teachers, including Rebecca Friedrichs, who object to being forced to pay these “agency fees” that are collected because of the overall cost of collective bargaining efforts that the CTA faces. What makes this different from the ruling a few decades ago is whether or not collective bargaining can be considered a political activity. Friedrichs and the other teachers are claiming that the act of bargaining with the State is “inherently political” in nature and that it essentially amounts to political lobbying, which they ultimately don’t agree with. Therefore, they believe that their First Amendment rights are being overtly violated by forcing them to pay these agency fees, since they may not agree with the CTA’s collective bargaining efforts or their practices in general. Read more here...

FreedomWorks' Statement on the President's Veto of ObamaCare Repeal

Following the news that President Barack Obama vetoed repeal of ObamaCare, FreedomWorks Legislative Affairs Manager Josh Withrow commented:

“If the president really cared about middle-class Americans, he would have signed this bill into law. The middle class is getting screwed by ObamaCare. Those with incomes just high enough to be ineligible for subsidies have to bear the full cost of ObamaCare’s unaffordable health insurance plans.”

“We look forward to seeing congressional Republicans’ plans for a patient-centered alternative to ObamaCare. We’re optimistic that we will be able to repeal and replace this disastrous law in 2017.” Read more here...

So, What About the Jail System?

- by Christina Delgado 

Much of justice reform focuses on the prison system in America. Statistics and studies usually include extensive amounts of information pertaining to prison demographics, numbers, solutions, etc. However, detailed information regarding the state of the American jail system and the rate of incarceration in local jails has been lacking.

While efforts behind prison reform are valid and a very worthy cause in the overall fight to combat the state of our current inefficient and ineffective justice system, misuse of the local jail system is similarly vital. Incarcerating a person presumed innocent in jail is still depriving the individual of certain liberties, which requires an appropriate and adequate application of power. Read more here...

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Jason Pye
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