MCDANIEL: The Threat of ISIS

BY: Chris McDaniel @senatormcdaniel

Who is America’s greatest national security threat at the present time?

Is it ISIS, the radical Islamic group spreading their reign of terror across Iraq and the greater Middle East in the hopes of establishing a Muslim Caliphate?  Or is it our very own President, who seems clueless to this threat and is placing our nation in a very dangerous situation with his attitude, inaction, and weakness?

The Islamic State has been on a rampage as of late, beheading 21 Egyptian Christians and burning to death 45 Iraqis in the past few weeks.

In an even more outrageous act, ISIS thugs killed and cooked a captured British Arab man, then fed him to his mother when she came to their headquarters to ask for his release.

What evil, depraved mind could conjure up such an unthinkable act of savagery?

They have threatened to sack Rome and have made threats against the Pope, which his security forces are taking very seriously.  And, if you think an assault on Rome is impossible, it seems ISIS is looking to expand into the failed state of Libya (another notable Obama achievement) as a gateway into Europe.

Their movement is growing stronger by the day, as 20,000 new foreign fighters from around the world recently joined their ranks.  And more will come as they continue to advance with little in the way of resistance from the United States.

Shamefully, because of the lack of American leadership, it has fallen to nations like Jordan, under the leadership of King Abdullah II, outraged at the brutal burning death of one of its pilots, to take up the fight against ISIS.  And the King has vowed to keep up the assault, as has Turkey, which has pledged to help liberate the Iraqi city of Mosul, all while Obama’s Pentagon is retreating from its planned spring ground offensive.

If there was ever a time America needed strong leadership, like the kind of uplifting guidance we received from Ronald Reagan during the Cold War, it is now.

But what do we get from President Obama? A much different message: Blame America, blame Christians, blame anybody by ISIS.

His State Department deputy spokesperson recently attributed the rise of ISIS on a lack of jobs in the Middle East.  “We can’t kill our way out of this war,” she said.  So if we just had an Obama-style jobs program over there, rather than a military effort, then the ISIS problem would go away, at least in the minds of State Department bureaucrats.

But only those blinded by the glow of their own elitism would propose such an approach.  Aside from its utter silliness, has ever a plan such as that worked?  Can radical revolutionaries be bought off?  Only in the “enlightened” mind of a liberal.

The president does not condemn the act of jihad or radical Islamic terrorism, or even reference “Muslim extremism.”  In fact, he won’t admit there is such a thing.  And if he does make any generic statements against violent acts of terror, he always qualifies it, as a child would, by arguing others do it too.  Most disturbingly, this was on full display when he used the occasion of the National Prayer Breakfast to condemn Christians and liken them to ISIS.

But it was not any recent Christian crimes to which the President was referring. “And lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place,” Obama said, “remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ.”

So to throw blame on Christians, Obama had to reach back nearly a thousand years to the Crusades, then proceeded to mangle the history of what was a defensive struggle against advancing Muslim savagery in Europe and the Judeo-Christian Holy Land.

The upcoming campaign in 2016 is shaping up to be one of the most important presidential elections in modern history, as our nation faces serious foreign policy crises around the globe.

It’s not simply that America needs new leadership; America needs leadership period.

Chris is an attorney, conservative commentator and was a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in 2014. He has represented the 42nd District, which encompasses part of South Mississippi, since 2008. He resides with his family in Ellisville, Mississippi.

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PLUNKETT: Political upheaval that gave rise to M. Stanton Evans is same challenge conservatives face today. 

BY: B. Keith Plunkett | United Conservatives Fund Staff

In the fall of 1960, 90 young conservatives met at the Sharon, Connecticut home of National Review editor William F. Buckley, Jr., where they founded Young Americans for Freedom (YAF) to serve as an organization for young conservative activists. As their statement of principle, the group adopted the Sharon Statement, which was drafted by 26-year-old newspaper editor M. Stanton Evans. Written “at this time of moral and political crisis,” the statement is a succinct summary of the central ideas of modern American conservatism.

Evans, long now considered an icon of the modern conservative movement, passed away March 3 at the age of 80.

Following the drafting of the Sharon Statement, Evans beloved YAF went on to become one of the most influential groups in the history of modern conservatism.

Evans gave rise to conservative thought and philosophy as a power on college campuses against the “anything goes” ideals of liberals and progressives of the 1960’s with his book Revolt on the Campus.

At a time that easily mirrors the same rise of heavy handed progressive ideology on college campuses and within a decadent culture today, Evans work to focus on the future can, and should be, a model. His work provides the example of how a more intelligent conservative dialogue can win over new generations once again.

Evans is widely credited with standing strong to rally the campaign of Ronald Reagan when in March of 1976 many were prepared to throw in the towel. Reagan went on to win primaries in North Carolina and Texas and entered the August Republican National Convention in a race still too close to call. The fight ensued among delegates and Ford narrowly escaped as the nominee. It was Reagan’s speech at the convention that positioned him as the true conservative future of the Republican Party.

Reagan said:

“This is our challenge; and this is why here in this hall tonight, better than we have ever done before, we have got to quit talking to each other and about each other and go out and communicate to the world that we may be fewer in numbers than we have ever been, but we carry the message they are waiting for.”

It was at that point that many in the audience began to realize they had nominated the wrong man.

But for Stan Evans’ insistence on Reagan continuing the campaign in March of 1976, that defining speech from the podium of the Republican National Convention in August would not have happened. Without that speech, there would have been no President Reagan in 1980, and twenty years of prosperity based on conservative principles that brought about a renewal of communities across the country and inspired generations to public service may never have occurred.

His tenacity in the face of challenges notwithstanding, it is Evans’ Sharon Statement that he is most widely remembered for. It is considered to be one of the founding documents of the modern conservative movement. To read it today,  one will hear the phrases many conservatives intuitively understand and now take for granted. But in 1960 it was groundbreaking.

One only need replace the reference to “communism” in the document with “radical Islamism” and the entire statement is as pertinent today as it was then.

“The Sharon Statement”

Adopted in conference at Sharon, Connecticut, September 11, 1960

In this time of moral and political crises, it is the responsibility of the youth of America to affirm certain eternal truths.

We, as young conservatives, believe:

That foremost among the transcendent values is the individual’s use of his God-given free will, whence derives his right to be free from the restrictions of arbitrary force;

That liberty is indivisible, and that political freedom cannot long exist without economic freedom;

That the purpose of government is to protect those freedoms through the preservation of internal order, the provision of national defense, and the administration of justice;

That when government ventures beyond these rightful functions, it accumulates power, which tends to diminish order and liberty;

That the Constitution of the United States is the best arrangement yet devised for empowering government to fulfill its proper role, while restraining it from the concentration and abuse of power;

That the genius of the Constitution—the division of powers—is summed up in the clause that reserves primacy to the several states, or to the people, in those spheres not specifically delegated to the Federal government;

That the market economy, allocating resources by the free play of supply and demand, is the single economic system compatible with the requirements of personal freedom and constitutional government, and that it is at the same time the most productive supplier of human needs;

That when government interferes with the work of the market economy, it tends to reduce the moral and physical strength of the nation; that when it takes from one man to bestow on another, it diminishes the incentive of the first, the integrity of the second, and the moral autonomy of both;

That we will be free only so long as the national sovereignty of the United States is secure; that history shows periods of freedom are rare, and can exist only when free citizens concertedly defend their rights against all enemies;

That the forces of international Communism are, at present, the greatest single threat to these liberties;

That the United States should stress victory over, rather than coexistence with, this menace; and

That American foreign policy must be judged by this criterion: does it serve the just interests of the United States?

Alfred Regnery, Chairman of the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, said of Evans in 2013, “Stan always played the long game. He wasn’t interested in quick whimsical ideas that came and went. He was more interested in changing the culture, changing people’s ideas. But he knew that was a long-term undertaking and he was willing to do it.”

Indeed it was. It took twenty years from the time Evans wrote the Sharon Statement to send the first, and only, modern conservative to the White House.

His political focus on character driven individualism as a student of Russell Kirk drove him to live his conservative beliefs in his approach to political life, and we are all much better today for it.

If there is anyone that should inspire conservatives today and show the value of study, communication and consistent engagement across Mississippi and beyond, it is the work of M. Stanton Evans.

We have lost an icon. But, in celebrating his life, we can use his words to bolster our resolve and inspire a new generation.

Keith Plunkett is the Policy and Communications Director for the United Conservatives Fund. He has worked on communications and policy issues with a range of public officials from aldermen to Congressmen, and a variety of businesses, government agencies and non-profits. He serves or has served as a board member of several non-profit, civic and political organizations. Contact him by email at or follow him on Twitter @Keithplunkett

Originally published at

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BY: Joy Pullman | Heartland Insitute

The conservative grassroots recovered Friday from an establishment-landed punch to potentially knock out a mealy-mouthed bill replacing No Child Left Behind.

Last Wednesday, the House Rules Committee approved some 50 moderate Republican and Democrat amendments to receive up-or-down votes on the House floor along with the Student Success Act, a bill to replace NCLB. Crucially, the committee refused to let three conservative Republican amendments also face an up-or-down vote. Those three would have allowed states to drop national testing mandates, dropped nearly all federal mandates while receiving their education dollars as block grants, and allowed federal funds for poor kids to follow them to private choice schools if states chose. In other words, they would have moved the Student Success Act from namby-pamby nothing to limiting federal micromanagement of education.

That plus a surge of grassroots pressure peeled enough Republican votes away to embarrass congressional leaders, who had to pull the vote Friday. Politico says the failure means it’s likely Congress will never send President Barack Obama an NCLB rewrite.

“At this point it’s just not clear to me how one negotiates a bill that the White House has any interest in signing and that you can get 218 votes in the House for,” the American Enterprise Institute’s Rick Hess toldPolitico. “There’s no chance that the leadership is going to pass a federal education bill with Democratic votes and write off the pushback from conservatives.”

The fat lady hasn’t sung yet, though. Senate HELP Committee Chair Lamar Alexander says he plans to introduce a new, even more Democrat-friendly, NCLB rewrite this week. Given how things have played out in the House, it’s doubtful a further-Left bill will get a better reception. But since citizen lobbying played a key role in tanking the earlier bill, it’s likely lawmakers will need similar pressure again to fully nail the lid on this coffin.

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House passes bill that allows taxpayer owned hospitals to slide on transparency except for Singing River. 

Only one publicly owned hospital in Mississippi would be required to abide by the state open-meetings and public-records laws, under a watered-down version of a bill.

The House Public Health Committee on Tuesday changed and passed Senate Bill 2407.

The measure was prompted by problems with the employee pension plan at Singing River Hospital in Jackson County, and that’s the only hospital remaining in the latest version of the bill.

The Senate had already passed a broader version, which would have applied to all public hospitals.

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MS Power threatens 40 percent rate increase if Supreme Court’s Kemper Plant ruling allowed to stand. 

Mississippi Power has told its customers to expect a rate increase of up to 40 percent if a Mississippi Supreme Court ruling stands.

The court ruled last month that an 18 percent rate increase to pay for its Kemper Plant, which is costing billions of dollars more than first estimated, was improperly granted. The court ordered Mississippi Power to refund money collected under that rate increase. But, before that happens, the company plans to ask the court for a rehearing, a spokesman said.

It has until next week to file for that, said spokesman Jeff Shepard. He said he had no idea how long it would be before a final decision is made and if the ruling stands how long it would be before customers received refunds.

Hattiesburg businessman Thomas Blanton sued over the 18 percent increase. He says customers should not be forced to pay for what he calls a risky experiment in the plant, which is designed to turn lignite into a synthetic gas for fuel to produce electricity.

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Speaker Gunn says taxpayers will get back goats as long as state has increase in goats.

Under a bill that has passed the House and awaits Senate debate, the personal income tax would be reduced a bit at a time, and only during years when state revenue increases at least 3 percent. Under the speediest scenario, the tax would disappear after 15 years. If the economy sputters, the phaseout would take longer.

“I think a lot of people have failed to understand it,” (Speaker Philip) Gunn, R-Clinton, said Monday at a forum sponsored by the Capitol press corps and Mississippi State University’s Stennis Institute of Government.

Gunn, who is a Baptist church elder, compared the tax cut proposal to tithing at church.

“You give a tithe out of your increase. At least, that’s my understanding of scripture,” Gunn said.

“If you start the year and you’ve 10 goats and you end the year with 10 goats, you don’t give a tithe because you haven’t had any increase,” he said. “But if you start the year with 10 goats and you finish the year with 20 goats, according to scripture you give a tenth. So, you’re going to give one goat to the church. But you get to keep the other nine.”

Mississippi’s current budget is just over $6 billion, with about $1.7 billion coming from the state income tax.

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WILSON: Budget analysts say Gunn’s “long, drawn-out” tax cut plan risks implementation.

BY: Steve Wilson |

Under Gunn’s plan, the 3 percent bracket would be eliminated by 2019, the 4 percent bracket by 2022 and the 5 percent bracket by 2030. For Mississippi families making $30,000 per year, it would add up to a $1,350 tax cut; people making $50,000 would receive $2,350 cut; and those making $75,000 would get a $3,350 cut.

“This is a prudent plan where we looked at the best practices in other states where things have worked and where they have not worked,” Mayo said. “There are those who believe government money is like the Robert Earl Keen song that the road goes on forever and the party never ends. We like Mississippians to have their own money and spend it on their own parties. We’ve made tough budget decisions for the last three years, and now we will reap the fruits of those labors.”

Nichole Kaeding, a budget analyst for the libertarian Cato Institute who specializes in state and federal spending policy, says there’s danger in the long phaseout times — a decade for Reeves’ plan and 15 years for Gunn’s.

“The risk of a long, drawn-out tax cut process is that the tax cuts might never come,” Kaeding told Mississippi Watchdog via email. “Future legislatures, future governors and future special interest groups could work to stymie the process, eliminating the promised cuts.

“It is normal for states to take several years to lower tax rates, but a 10- or 15-year schedule is quite long. A long tax cut schedule increases the risk that promised tax cuts will not occur.”

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WALTERS: Mississippi GOP Establishment Jabs McDaniel, Insults Tea Party Over LG Race

BY: Ryan S. Walters | @ryanswalters73

Mississippi Conservative Daily

The Republican Establishment in Mississippi is downright gleeful, or so they say, over the fact that neither Chris McDaniel nor Michael Watson jumped in the Lieutenant Governor’s race to challenge Tate Reeves. But are they happy, or relieved?

On WLBT’s political “Red Blue Review” show with Nash and Taggart, the pundits used the occasion to strike out against McDaniel and his conservative base.

Nash, the self-professed Liberal Democrat on the show, praised Taggart, the so-called “conservative Republican,” for his assessment that Tea Party Conservatives in Mississippi were not that big in numbers. His proof? Neither of the big three state senate conservatives – Chris McDaniel, Michael Watson, and Melanie Sojourner – stepped up to challenge Tate Reeves. They “chickened out,” according to Nash, a statement for which Taggart was in full agreement.

Not to be outdone, Alan Lange of Y’all Politics took his own shots and dredged up old arguments that have been de-bunked months ago. Senator McDaniel had already dropped hints that “he really wants the bright lights of DC and the Mississippi state politics really doesn’t matter that much to him. That might explain his attendance record.” This last petty poke has been thoroughly rebuked.

Keith Plunkett, the Communications and Policy Director at United Conservatives Fund, slammed both Lange and Taggart.

“It amazes me that Alan Lange can live in a huge house in one of the most expensive neighborhoods in Jackson and can cast aspersions on who does and does not decide to submit themselves to public service.  Working class people like those across this state who wish to participate in the political process deserve credit for stepping forward, not to be called names. 

“Furthermore, it is disappointing to hear my old friend Andy Taggart agree that candidates ‘chickened out’ and that conservative groups were a small thing in the state, when he himself sat down with me and had hoped to sit down with Senator McDaniel in order to gain access to the coalitions we built during the 2014 campaign for his own desired run for Attorney General.  The Tea Party and conservative coalitions weren’t such a small thing to him then.”

I too find it interesting that these hacks slam Senator McDaniel for not being interested in state politics. Why then is he running for a third term in the Senate? And his senate legislative record, one that I have just recently detailed, is more than impressive; it’s downright gleaming. I dare Lange or Taggart to show one that can compare with it.

The Tea Party, says Lange, is nothing more than “a clown show and should be recognized as such.” This “‘ultra-conservative’ wing still appears to be a loud but numerically small minority in Mississippi and Qualifying Day 2015 certainly proved that point.”

So, quick question to the self-anointed political experts: How do you explain the “clown show” leading McDaniel beating the unbeatable Thad Cochran on June 3 and then bringing in more than 187,000Republican votes on June 24, if the conservative base is so small and silly in Mississippi? It’s a base of support that is far larger than viewers of the Nash and Taggart show or readers of Y’all Politics combined, I can tell you that!

In fact, McDaniel’s base is bigger than the Tea Party itself. The numbers don’t lie. McDaniel’s base is the same coalition of support that secured Reagan two landslide victories in 1980 and 1984 – a combination of libertarians, social conservatives, and fiscal hawks. The coalition that Chris McDaniel built to face Thad Cochran was so large that the Barbour machine had to bring in thousands of Democrats to defeat it.  And that is an indisputable fact.

Just what is it about the Tea Party and Movement Conservatism that the GOP Establishment hates so much? Do they realize that Liberal Democrats also hate the Tea Party? I guess it’s like the old saying goes, birds of a feather flock together!

Let me remind these “experts” that it was the Tea Party movement, you know that grassroots uprising against Obama, that is 100 percent responsible for taking back the House in 2010, and it was the same base of voters who backed candidates with a strong conservative message in 2014, allowing Republicans to take control of the Senate and widen their lead in the House.

In between those two mid-term elections were the most recent presidential contests, won by the most liberal Democrat in American history, Barack Obama. Now how did that happen? It’s quite simple really. The GOP Establishment shunned conservatives and nominated their own candidates, because, you know, we can’t win the White House with a radical Tea Party connected-conservative. The Establishment picked the nominees in 2008 and 2012 – McCain and Romney – and they both lost to a community organizer!

News flash: If you geniuses in the Establishment, like the Barbours, Taggart, and Lange, succeed in nominating Jeb Bush or Chris Christie, or any other pseudo-conservative, YOU WILL LOSE AGAIN! But only this time it will be worse.

The State of Mississippi is faring no better than the nation, thanks to the GOP Establishment. The economy and job creation are ranked dead last in the nation, and the latest school ranking also placed Mississippi schools in last place. Yet Taggart, Lange, Reeves, and the rest of the same ole establishment bunch keep doing the same ole thing, thus proving Albert Einstein and his definition of insanity correct.

It is this “loud clown show” that is serious about reforming our state and our nation, those patriotic citizens who want to roll up their sleeves and get to work. It is the proponents of True Conservatism who are standing up to Obama and his transformation of America. It is not the Establishment, which is caving in to the community-organizing Socialist at every turn. It is political leaders like Chris McDaniel, Michael Watson, Melanie Sojourner in Mississippi, and Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, Trey Gowdy, to name but a few in Washington, who are fighting for our liberty and for better government each and every day, the very ones Lange, Taggart, and the rest of their ilk throw bombs at every day!

So allow me some parting advice: If you folks in the Mississippi Republican Establishment would work as hard on enacting reform legislation as you do attacking conservatives like Chris McDaniel, Michael Watson, and Melanie Sojourner, then this state might eventually get out of last place. Otherwise we are destined for continued failure.

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The Piercing Question

BY: Oswald Chambers

Do you love Me? —John 21:17

Peter’s response to this piercing question is considerably different from the bold defiance he exhibited only a few days before when he declared, “Even if I have to die with You, I will not deny You!” (Matthew 26:35; also see Matthew 26:33-34). Our natural individuality, or our natural self, boldly speaks out and declares its feelings. But the true love within our inner spiritual self can be discovered only by experiencing the hurt of this question of Jesus Christ. Peter loved Jesus in the way any natural man loves a good person. Yet that is nothing but emotional love. It may reach deeply into our natural self, but it never penetrates to the spirit of a person. True love never simply declares itself. Jesus said, “Whoever confesses Me before men [that is, confesses his love by everything he does, not merely by his words], him the Son of Man also will confess before the angels of God” (Luke 12:8).

Unless we are experiencing the hurt of facing every deception about ourselves, we have hindered the work of the Word of God in our lives. The Word of God inflicts hurt on us more than sin ever could, because sin dulls our senses. But this question of the Lord intensifies our sensitivities to the point that this hurt produced by Jesus is the most exquisite pain conceivable. It hurts not only on the natural level, but also on the deeper spiritual level. “For the Word of God is living and powerful…, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit…”— to the point that no deception can remain (Hebrews 4:12). When the Lord asks us this question, it is impossible to think and respond properly, because when the Lord speaks directly to us, the pain is too intense. It causes such a tremendous hurt that any part of our life which may be out of line with His will can feel the pain. There is never any mistaking the pain of the Lord’s Word by His children, but the moment that pain is felt is the very moment at which God reveals His truth to us.

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Judge rules that Kemper County project manager must keep his mouth shut about the facility. 

A state court judge in Alabama has granted Southern Co.’s request to keep a project manager at the Kemper County coal plant from disclosing certain information about the facility.

Jefferson County Circuit Court Judge Elisabeth French granted the temporary restraining order Feb. 19.

Court filings do not indicate exactly what kind of information Southern Co. — the parent of south Mississippi’s Mississippi Power Co. — is trying to prevent Brett J. Wingo from disclosing. Lawyers for the utility wrote in the petition that it would cause “substantial and irreparable injury” should it become public.

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