Obama Creating Panel to Form Election Guide for States

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While specifics are scarce,  it’s a safe bet that the panel won’t be focused on stopping voter fraud, or making sure that members of the military aren’t disenfranchised. No. It’s focus will be about making voting easier. What can we do about long lines? Should we extend early voting even longer?

The Washington Times reported Thursday that Obama issued a new executive order aimed at cracking down on those types of election problems.

Read between the lines of the group’s mission statement, and it seems the group will be overseeing state election laws, to at least some degree.

Politico reports Mr. Obama’s order creates a new presidential commission on election body, co-chaired by two lawyers, Bob Bauer and Ben Ginsburg. Mr. Bauer served on the campaign of Mr. Obama in 2012; Mr. Ginsberg, on Mitt Romney’s campaign, Politico says.

The Daily Caller reported that nine-seat Presidential Commission will be tasked with recommending changes to states’ election laws by the end of September.

“The Commission shall identify best practices and otherwise make recommendations to promote the efficient administration of elections in order to ensure that all eligible voters have the opportunity to cast their ballots without undue delay, and to improve the experience of voters facing other obstacles,” said Obama’s executive order, issued March 28.

State elections are conducted by states, usually under state laws. However, the federal Congress has the constitutional authority to “any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Places of choosing Senators.”

Let’s take a look at Robert Bauer, Obama’s lawyer, who will be co-chairing the panel with Ben Ginsburg.
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* Served as general counsel for Obama for America.

* Unsuccessfully lobbied the Justice Department last fall to pursue a criminal probe of the American Issues Project (AIP), an independent group that sought to run an ad highlighting the Barack Obama and terrorist Bill Ayers of the Weather Underground connection.

* Sought prosecution with the Department of Justice against Harold Simmons for funding the ad.

* Used thug and scare tactics on television stations throughout the U.S. to compel them to pull the advertisement of Obama and Ayers.

Bauer is Mao fan, Anita Dunn’s husband. What could possibly go wrong?

According to WaPo, Benjamin Ginsberg is the GOP’s go-to guy for electoral recounts.

BenGinsberg

He is best known for his work on the 2000 Florida recount that ended in the U.S. Supreme Court’s Bush v. Gore decision, but he has represented the leadership and campaign political action committees of slews of senators, House members and governors.Ginsberg was the national counsel for Mitt Romney’s 2008 campaign, advised his Free and Strong America PAC and continues to offer counsel for Romney’s 2012 efforts .

I wouldn’t mind a commission set up to  fix our broken election system, but one fears this panel wasn’t set up to do that. Any commission created by this ACORN friendly president has to be looked at with a healthy degree of suspicion.

Hat tip: Brian B.

Video: Rand Paul Draws Huge College Crowd At UK Campus

WHAS 11 in Lexington Ky reported:

If Republicans were worried about tapping into a younger voter base, Kentucky’s Rand Paul pulled a huge crowd on the campus of the University of Kentucky on Wednesday, March 27.

Take a look at the crowds lined up to see Senator Rand Paul waiting in the cold and students wrapped around the building.

The students applauded Paul for sticking to his guns on gun rights. He and two other Tea Party senators plan to filibuster a democratic gun control measure in April.

The students applauded Paul for sticking to his guns on gun rights? Really – because the MSM keeps telling me that the Democrats’ gun control agenda has wide public appeal.

The Mayors Against Illegal Guns coalition, which held poorly attended press conferences and rallies all across the nation, today, can only wish their message had as much widespread appeal as Paul’s.

Paul also spoke about his 13-hour filibuster to block the nomination of John Brennan to be head of the CIA over the Regime’s  drone policy.

“This was about the limitation of power,” Paul said. “To me the question is, do you believe you have the power to drone someone in the U.S.?

“This to me is an amazingly important battle and something we should stand up for, and we’re united on the left and the right.”

From drones, Paul moved through a litany of his beliefs and plans, all part of a breezy, informal 20-minute talk sponsored by BB&T and the Gatton School of Business and Economics.

■ On entitlement reform: Maybe young people should be allowed to opt out of Social Security.

■ On immigration: The U.S. needs a system that provides workers with visas, but no welfare, and no right to vote.

■ On his economic plans: America needs a 17 percent flat tax for both business and income that would create “an economic boom like you’ve never seen.”

■ On gun control: “The only thing that could have prevented that shooting (the Newtown tragedy) was if the principal had a gun in their desk,” he said. He plans to block new gun-control efforts when he returns to Washington.

Liveblogging MAIG National Day to Demand Action Events

Mayor Bloomberg’s notorious gun control group Mayors Against Illegal Guns has organized a “National Day To Demand Action” day, with press conferences and rallies scheduled all across the nation.

As I wrote at the Conversation, this morning, Bloomberg may want to consider having background checks on these pro gun-control Mayors before they are accepted into the group, because the reckless and criminal behavior of some of the members is not helping their cause, from a PR standpoint.

 The Washington Free Beacon recently reported that some current and former members of the group have been charged with crimes as serious as felony corruption, assault of a police officer, and child sex crimes.

Dubbed the GunControlapalooza, by some, their gun control Day of Action  was given a send off, yesterday by none other than VP Joey “Choo Choo” Biden, who held a conference call with gun control supporters across the nation, telling them, the assault weapons’ ban just the beginning.

The president kicked things off with a WH photo op where  he shamelessly scolded fellow Americans who are against his gun control agenda: ‘Shame on us if we’ve forgotten’ Newtown kids; Citizens.

You can find the list of the events state by state, here.

I’ve been trying to find information about the events that have already taken place. There was supposed to be something at the Durham, NC City Hall  at 10:30 a.m. but so far, no news on that. No word yet on the Indianapolis rally that happened at 11:00. There is a written statement from MAIG posted at Reuters with the disclaimer, * Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release: Hoosiers Call On Congress To End Gun Violence As Part Of National Day To Demand Action.

Nothing yet on the Palm beach County event…. I’m sure that it’s taking reporters time to download all their pictures of the seas of humanity at these anti Second Amendment rallies.

Here’s what I’ve got, so far.

The Hartford CT event was held at 9:00 am:

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal and Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra are throwing support behind a national effort to end gun violence.

They all spoke on the steps of Hartford City Hall on Thursday as part of The National Day to Demand Action, organized by the Mayors Against Illegal Guns Coalition.

How big was the crowd AP?

Here’s the pic the posted of Hartford press conference.

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I’m sure pictures and videos will start appearing before long. I will update as soon as they do.

UPDATE:

Philly Mayor Michael Nutter held a press conference at the Widener Library branch in North Philadelphia at 12:00 on Thursday as a part of a National Day to Demand Action on gun legislation.

Nutter – along with fellow members of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, Deputy Commissioner Kevin Bethel, and advocates with CeaseFirePA and Mothers in Charge – called on Congress to require background checks for all gun sales.

There was no mention in the article on the number of people who filled the library to hear the press conference.

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UPDATE:

Binghamton mayor urges action on illegal guns:

Binghamton mayor Mayor Matthew Ryan held a press conference at 11:00 am.

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UPDATE:

NEW YORK, March 28, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Mainers gathered today in Augusta and Portland as part of the National Day to Demand Action to end gun violence as President Obama met with gun violence survivors, law enforcement officials and mothers at the White House to urge Congress to reform U.S. gun laws.  Mayors Against Illegal Guns also released the first television ad featuring family members of those killed at Sandy Hook calling on political leaders to support sensible reforms like comprehensive and enforceable background checks.  The ad can be viewed here: www.DemandAction.org/Newtown-Families

In Augusta, Mayor William Stokes and Hallowell Mayor Charlotte Warren held a press conference and petition drive while in Portland, Mayor Michael Brennan and former Lewiston Mayor Larry Gilbert held a press conference.

“We vigorously enforce gun crimes in Maine,” said Augusta Mayor William Stokes.  “But while we have a great working relationship with federal and local partners, it is not enough to prevent out of state buyers coming into Maine to buy guns they cannot get elsewhere. We need stronger federal laws that require background checks for all gun sales and make gun trafficking a federal crime.”

“Born and raised on a farm in rural Maine, I come from a family of hunters and gun owners, and I am proud of our family traditions,” said Hallowell Mayor Charlotte Warren.  “I am also keenly aware of the damage these weapons can do in the wrong hands. My family honors a tradition of safe and responsible gun use. It is because of my upbringing that I support background checks for all gun sales.  Instituting background checks protects all of our gun rights. We are doing everything we can at the local level to keep families safe and healthy. We need help from Augusta and Washington to close loopholes and keep guns out of the wrong hands.”

UPDATE:

WRAL: NC cities mark national ‘action day’ on gun violence:

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There was reportedly a crowd for this one, but no pix of the crowd.

Events were planned in Charlotte, Greensboro, Raleigh and Durham, where family members of victims of gun violence spoke about Thursday morning about the need for universal background checks – not only for commercial but for private sales.

Joined by Durham Mayor Bill Bell, Chapel Hill Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt and Morrisville Mayor Jackie Holcombe, Effie Steele told the crowd about how her 21-year-old pregnant daughter had been shot in the chest three times in December 2007 by a family friend whom she believes had mental health issues.

“I’m involved in a group I never thought I would ever or never wanted to be a part of,” Steele said. “My daughter, Ebony Robinson, and my only grandson, Elijah, were murdered five years ago by someone who should not have been allowed to have a gun, much less his own personal arsenal.”

UPDATE:

In Phoenix Gun-control supporters gather in Phoenix for National Day to Demand Action:

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PHOENIX — It’s National Day to Demand Action, as people call for universal background checks on all gun buyers and an assault weapons ban.

A group gathered Thursday for a downtown rally at Cesar Chavez Plaza.

Mari Bailey’s son Michael was 21 when he was shot and killed almost 10 years ago. That was when she began her fight to stop gun violence. She said that this 100th day since the Connecticut school shootings prompts the time for tougher gun laws.

“If it saves one life, and one more mom from going what I went through, let’s do this.”

The Center for American Progress said Arizona is the ninth-deadliest state for gun violence with a rate 40 percent higher than the national average.

Tucson: Tucson leaders gather to “Demand Action” on gun violence:

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While members of Congress are home during the Easter/Passover recess, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, in conjunction with Organizing for Action, Americans for Responsible Solutions and other groups, will organize events and petition drives and generate an unprecedented number of calls into Senate district offices to call for their representatives to support commonsense gun laws like comprehensive and enforceable background checks.

The article was press release stuff with no actual reporting about the rally, but the comments are entertaining.

HELLO! Criminals have illegal guns…criminals don’t do back ground checks.

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No shortage of idiots of the left in Tucson, instead of dealing with real problems like illegals, budgets, drug cartels, street gangs let’s screw with honest second amendment supporters and attack their rights, ruin their lives and act like the total idiots of the left they are along with a few Rino’s. Nothing proposed will do a thing to prevent any of these shootings past or present except armed citizens willing to act against the crazies. The police have no duty to respond, and honestly, has there ever been a mass shooting at a gun show or gun store or police convention? NO BECAUSE THEY’RE ARMED AND CAN PROTECT THEMSELVES! I wonder why they’re not mentioning names here? Is it because we will remember election time and kick their a.s.s.es out of office! Keep your hands off our guns you loony leftists! Oh and let’s not forget Loughner was a Democrat who read Karl Marx and Adolph Hitler!

Something needs to be done about the rash of gun violence. I say INCREASE THE NUMBER OF CCW AND ALLOW MORE RESPONSIBLE CITIZENS TO PROTECT THEMSELVES AS WELL AS OTHERS! In other words – “Carry a gun because a cop is too heavy.A great show of farce.

The sense I get from today is that there is simply not a widespread desire in this country to push Bloomberg et al’s gun control laws. These rallies and media events were very poorly attended from the looks of it. Kinda surprising since OFA was involved. Couldn’t Obama’s permanent campaign arm afford any decent astroturf?

Obama’s remarks this morning in the White House,  flanked by mothers of crime victims, were repulsive considering his Justice Dept’s abysmal track record  prosecuting gun crimes.

The gun grabbers want you to think otherwise, but the wind is definitely not at their backs.

Ted Cruz: “I Think A Gun Registry Is Very Very Dangerous…A Precondition To Confiscation” (Audio)

Ted Cruz was a guest on Glen Beck’s radio show, today to talk about the Democrats’ gun control efforts.

Some of what the Democrats are proposing is thankfully essentially “show legislation”, Cruz maintained. That would include the assault weapons ban that Senator Feinstein was pushing. The universal background checks are another story, though. Universal background checks would extend background checks to every single private transaction between law abiding citizens.

Cruz said that his view is that instead of gun legislation, they should be passing crime legislation.  “We should focus on deterrents and punishments on violent criminals.” He explained that instead of  taking away rights of law abiding citizens, we should enforce the laws that are already on the books.  “Right now,  the Obama Justice Dept  is not effectively enforcing those laws”, he argued.

The only way they could implement a universal background check is for the federal government to compile a gun registry. And a gun registry Cruz maintained is “very very dangerous”….

When pressed by Glen Beck to explain why, he said, because historically “it’s a precondition for confiscation. If the federal government has a list of your guns, it then can go and take your guns.”

A Few Months After Repubs Agree To Raise Taxes, White House Blasts Repubs For Refusing To Raise Taxes

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How much respect does this White House have for  low info Americans? None.  They expect them to have already forgotten that the Republicans agreed to a massive tax hike on January 1.

Via Weasel Zippers;

White House deputy press secretary Josh Earnest whacked Republican lawmakers for their refusal to consider passing more tax hikes, saying that remains the “chief impediment” to progress on a budget and deficit reduction deal.

“For some time now, the chief impediment to reaching a grand bargain has been the refusal of Republicans to ask the wealthiest and well-connected to pay even a dime more to help us deal with our deficit challenges. I’m sad to report that, even months later, that, that continues to be the case, that we are seeing a group of Republicans in the Congress who are refusing to compromise on this,” he said.

I’m even sadder to report that Republicans DID compromise months ago with the Fiscal Cliff tax hike:

The bill raises income tax rates for those taxpayers with incomes more than $400,000 for individuals and $450,000 for couples from 35 percent to 39.6 percent. These higher income taxpayers will also pay higher rates on investment income, with rates on dividends and capital gains rising from 15 percent to 20 percent. Add the 3.8 percent ObamaCare surcharge on investment income — another tax that takes effect in January, and the top rate on investment income would rise to 23.8 percent for those high-income households.

The bill also raises taxes on couples earning more than $250,000 a year and single people earning more than $200,000 by limiting personal exemptions and itemized deductions.

Estates taxes will also be increased, with the top rate raised to 40 percent, with the first $5 million in value exempted for individual estates and $10 million for family estates.

The bill also delays the automatic $1.2 trillion draconian sequester spending cuts for sixty days. The sequester cuts, evenly split between defense and certain domestic discretionary spending, were scheduled to go into effect on Jan. 1, 2013. The $24 billion cost of the sequester delay is allegedly made up with a mix of spending cuts and new revenues from rules changes on converting traditional individual retirement accounts into Roth IRAs.

Worse, the bill actually increases the deficit by including:

  • A permanent fix for the alternative minimum tax.
  • A five-year extension of tax credits for college tuition and the working poor, which were enacted as part of Obama’s failed 2009 stimulus.
  • A one-year extension for unemployment benefits, affecting two million people.
  • The long-term unemployed could count on receiving emergency benefits for another year, at a cost of about $30 billion.

More on the tax increases via The Heritage Foundation:

Ordinary Americans, as President Obama often refers to the majority of Americans, were by no means spared the tax increases allowed in the fiscal cliff deal. Americans’ disposable income is getting cut any way you look at it. The higher Social Security payroll tax is just one direct example. Higher taxes on investors and small businesses will trickle down to other Americans primarily in the form of lower wages and salaries and fewer opportunities for career advancement.

Americans dreaming of starting their own businesses will particularly be affected. Among the 13 tax increases for 2013, investors providing much of the capital for start-up firms to get off the ground took multiple hits. The rate on dividends and capital gains increased from 15 percent to 20 percent for taxable incomes over $450,000 ($400,000 for single filers).

Additionally, Obamacare imposed—for the first time ever—a surcharge on investment disguised as payroll tax. It raised a 3.8 percent surtax on investment income for taxpayers with taxable income exceeding $250,000 ($200,000 for singles). This brings the top rate on capital gains and dividends to 23.8 percent. And this represents a second layer of tax on capital gains. Most capital gains in the U.S. are first taxed at the highest-in-the-world corporate income tax rate of 35 percent.

Someone tell Josh, the REAL impediment to reaching a “grand bargain” is Obama’s intransigence on spending.

By the way, you tea partiers out there: remember back in 2009 when liberals kept telling us that Obama was a big tax cutter? All us “tea-baggers” were crazy to be saying “taxed enough already” because Obama was the biggest tax cutter the country had ever seen, and  he wouldn’t raise taxes “one single dime.” Remember how we laughed and laughed because we knew that he was going  to raise taxes big time to pay for the already bloated government leviathan he was so hellbent on expanding?

Yeah. Me too.

Jim (Punch Back Twice as Hard) Messina in OFA Fund-Raising Email: “If We Do This Right, The Other Side Won’t Know What Hit ‘Em”

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Jim Messina, the Chair of Obama’s permanent campaign arm, Organizing for Action, wants potential donors to know that “interest groups” on “the other side” have “money to burn” unlike his totally independent “grassroots” group which is run by former advisors to the President, and promises special access to the White House for big donors.

These shadowy special interest groups are trying to throw a wrench into the Regime’s good works, Messina says, and we can be “damned sure this is not going to stop.”

Supporters are urged to donate just $5.00 or more to help them punch back twice as hard. “The other side won’t know what hit em,” Messina promises at the end of his letter.

Friend —

I want to make one thing absolutely clear:

We’re up against a whole lot more than just opposition in Congress.

We’re up against interest groups with money to burn — organizations willing to drop every last penny they have to stop President Obama’s agenda in its tracks. We’re already seeing it on gun violence, and immigration reform — they’re going to spend millions to throw a wrench in the works of progress.

You can be damned sure that this is not going to stop.

Organizing for Action is going to shift the balance of power in Washington back to real people. People like you have shown over and over again that no amount of spending can stop millions of Americans calling for change.

It’s going to take each of us rolling up our sleeves, getting to work, and chipping in what we can when we can.

We have our first fundraising deadline this weekend. Donate $5 or more right now to become a founding member of this organization:

https://donate.barackobama.com/First-Deadline

This is going to be fun. If we do this right, the other side won’t know what hit ’em.

Messina

Jim Messina
Chair
Organizing for Action

Hat tip: Tony Katz