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Income Inequality, Beltway Style

I had to be in Washington the other day, so I squirreled away an hour to drive by my old house in northern Virginia. My wife Jane and I had bought it when we went to Washington with Reagan. Heady days, those. We were young and idealistic and determined to help The Gipper beat the Soviets in the Cold War, free up the American economy, and put a halt to the spreading bureaucracy of central government. In time, we came around to the idea that two out of three ain’t bad. It was a great house to raise a family – a graceful Cape Cod-style clapboard with a big yard. Shade trees with swings for the kids. A garden for Jane, a library for me. First thing ...

Tea Partiers Rally Nationwide to Demand the End of Congress’ Obamacare Exemption

Atlanta, Ga. – Tomorrow at Noon, Tea Party Patriots across the country will converge upon their Senators' and Representatives' local offices to demand that they abide by the laws they force on the American people. Under Section 1312 (D) of the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare), Members of Congress and their staff can no longer obtain health insurance through the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP). They also lost a generous FEHBP subsidy ($5,000 for individuals and $10,000 for the family plan). But, rather than lose the benefit as they originally wrote into law, Congress has re-classified itself as a “small business” – an absurd ...

News Briefing for Wednesday, June 3

TEA PARTY PATRIOTS: Patriot Act Renewal: Senate Overwhelmingly Votes To Proceed “…Conservative groups are arguing against McConnell’s amendments, and that could augur trouble in the House. So far, the USA Freedom Act has enjoyed unusual support from both tea party groups and the American Civil Liberties Union. “We support passage of the USA Freedom Act as passed by the House, and see no need whatsoever for these amendments which are obviously designed to weaken the bill,” Tea Party Patriots CEO Jenny Beth Martin said in a statement. “Simply put, if it is amended in the manner that the Majority Leader desires, we will be forced to ...

News Briefing for Tuesday, June 2

TEA PARTY PATRIOTS: End the NSA dragnet (Op-ed) http://www.visaliatimesdelta.com/story/opinion/2015/06/01/end-nsa-dragnet/28276189/ HEALTHCARE: Obamacare's Double-Digit Rate Hikes For 2016 Disclosed “After two years of relatively stable premiums across the country, rates will jump in 2016 by double-digit percentages for individual policy purchasers on public exchanges under the Affordable Care Act in practically every state, according to the first glimpse of proposed costs for next year released by the Obama administration. The rate increases aren’t a huge surprise as health insurers across the country in recent weeks have been disclosing ...

News Briefing for Monday, June 1

TEA PARTY PATRIOTS: Oklahoma's U.S. senators support extending surveillance programs to allow more time for debate “Ahead of a rare Sunday night session in the U.S. Senate, top leaders of the American Civil Liberities Union and the Tea Party Patriots said Friday the law allowing the collection of bulk telephone data should be allowed to expire this weekend. Jenny Beth Martin, president of the Tea Party Patriots, told reporters that the collection of so-called “metadata” regarding Americans’ telephone calls sounded harmless until one considered how much tracking of locations and movement it allowed. “It is violating our freedom and the Bill ...

News Briefing for May 30

TEA PARTY PATRIOTS: Choosing between Big Brother and the Bill of Rights (Op-ed) “Around 1:30 a.m. Saturday, there was a seismic shift in the U.S. Congress. As the Senate deadlocked over what to do about several expiring provisions of the Patriot Act, it became clear that political momentum had moved away from surveillance and secrecy toward freedom and privacy….” http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-0529-abdo-martin-nsa-20150529-story.html ACLU and Tea Party leaders unite against surveillance “It takes a travesty most vile to compel two groups that are essentially polar opposites to get together and call for reform. Enter the ...

News Briefing for Wednesday, May 27

TEA PARTY PATRIOTS: GOP Praises Court Halting Amnesty: 'Impatient Presidents Don't Get to Change the Law'  “…Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, declared, "on to the Supreme Court." "The U.S. Constitution vests the Congress with authority over immigration and naturalization. And as U.S. District Judge Hanen pointed out, President Obama simply treated Congress — and Article 2 — as if they didn’t exist.  "We are a Constitutional Republic, not a banana republic," Martin added. "Our Constitution, with its three co-equal branches, is the roadmap for the governing process. "As much as this would-be imperial president ...

News Briefing for Friday, May 22

HEALTHCARE: Costs trouble Obamacare enrollees “More than one-third of Obamacare enrollees aren't happy with the extra out-of-pocket costs they must still pay for healthcare. Thirty-seven percent of respondents to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll released Thursday said they're "somewhat" or "very" dissatisfied with their plan's deductible — a set sum consumers must pay for some doctors visits or treatments before their insurer steps in. Those on plans that meet the new requirements under the Affordable Care Act were more likely to report problems with costs — like being unable to pay their medical bills or skipping doctors visits because of cost ...

News Briefing for Thursday, May 21

TEA PARTY PATRIOTS: Tea Party Group Teams With ACLU, NAACP On Patriot Act “Growing concerns about the Patriot Act’s renewal are creating strange bedfellows. The Tea Party Patriots and the ACLU are running TV ads urging Americans to “tell Congress [to] protect our privacy.” On top of that, the executive director of Iowa’s ACLU and Tea Party Patriots’ boss Jenny Beth Martin have coauthored an op-ed in the Des Moines Register on “the need for significant reforms to curtail government surveillance authorities, like some of those included in the Patriot Act.” And even the NAACP — which hasn’t always been kind to the tea party movement ...

News Briefing for Tuesday, May 19

HEALTHCARE: ObamaCare Premium Increases Next Year May Shock You “The top ObamaCare exchange insurers in six states where 2016 rate requests have already been filed are seeking to raise rates an average 18.6% next year. Early reports range from an alarming 36% hike sought by the dominant insurer in Tennessee, to a hefty 23% average increase requested by Oregon insurers, to a moderate 7.7% average rise proposed in Connecticut. Flyers promoting Blue Cross Blue Shield and ObamaCare are on display to attract Hispanic customers at a kiosk at Compare Foods in Winston-Salem, N.C.... Flyers promoting Blue Cross Blue Shield and ObamaCare are on display to ...