Antidotes Needed for Coronavirus
The coronavirus is throwing our economy and even our presidential election into uncertainty, as the dreadful disease spreads to Europe and South Korea. Fear of contagion is not rampant yet in the United States, but a negative impact on our economy is already being felt and could worsen quickly.
The globalism that Donald Trump was elected to confront has struck back in a big way. Now President Trump is being forced to deal with the disastrous free trade which makes our economy so dependent on the economies of other nations.
It never had to be this way. We enjoyed prosperity for centuries without being whipsawed by what happens in China, South Korea, or Italy.
But those economies may nosedive due to the spread of the coronavirus. A dozen towns in Italy, some near its business capital of Milan, have been essentially quarantined due to the deadly virus, which has spread to more than six regions in that country.
The Italian stock market fell by 5% in one day, because panic and isolation are not good for business. For a virus which originated in China, its devastating impact on distant Italy is alarming indeed.
While the Italian stock market is small compared to ours, the real shock was how this deadly disease has spread so much in an unexpected place so far from China. If this pandemic has become this severe in Italy, then how can the rest of Europe and even the United States remain untouched?
There has been the lingering suspicion that the communist Chinese government has not been candid about the spread of the disease within its own borders. Communist dictators have never been known for honesty and transparency, and they have every reason to mislead the world about the harm they cause.
If free speech were allowed in China then we could all learn from the internet the full extent of the risks and challenges. Instead, we hear only what the communist Chinese want us to hear.
Some experts admit now that a worldwide spread of the disease is inevitable. While Trump deserves credit for keeping coronavirus mostly out of the United States, he deserves the most credit for warning against open borders.
Trump’s tariffs were a step in the right direction to reduce our dependence on the Chinese economy. It’s unfortunate that prior presidents did not take similar steps, which would have helped insulate us from this crisis.
Free trade advocates never warned us about how it would result in an undesired dependency by our economy on health issues in cultures unlike ours. The mingling of unclean animals in a food market in China has caused our stock market to suddenly drop by more than 3,000 points in four days.
Stephen Moore, the nominee by Trump to the Federal Reserve who was then blocked by the Establishment club which excludes any outsider, astutely calls the coronavirus the “black swan” of the presidential election. The term means an extraordinarily rare event that is unpredictable and almost impossible to assess as to its impact.
The biggest threat to the reelection of President Trump is not Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, or Mike Bloomberg. It is the impact the coronavirus will have on our economy which became too dependent on foreign trade because of the policies of Trump’s predecessors.
Undecided voters shift to the Republican side when they want more security, as they did when the Ebola virus created panic shortly before the 2014 midterm elections. But if the coronavirus causes the bottom to fall out of our economy, then voters may not recognize globalism as the real culprit.
The media will wrongly blame President Trump for any downturn caused by the disease. During the reelection campaign of President George H.W. Bush in 1992, the media blamed him for a delay in relief after Hurricane Andrew, even though it was the Democrat Florida Governor who blocked the assistance.
More than 20% of our imports are from China, and some American businesses are already feeling the pinch from a reduction there due to the coronavirus. Tourism is also important to our economy and nervous travelers can be expected to cancel trips rather than risk being quarantined somewhere.
Ending the over-regulation by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which keeps beneficial medication off the market for years longer than necessary, would yield medical antidotes against deadly new viruses. The free market could then quickly meet this challenge with effective antidotes if the FDA were not impeding and delaying every innovative cure.
Democrats’ dangerous game of impeaching President Trump despite lacking the votes to remove him from office has backfired on them. Trump gained political strength from his acquittal in the Senate, just in time to boost his campaign for reelection.
Trump’s first act was to remove the Deep State bureaucrats who started it all, including the subordinate Ukrainian-born Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, whom Trump rightly called “very insubordinate” for going outside the chain of command on foreign policy. Trump also removed Col. Vindman’s identical twin brother Yevgeny from his powerful position on the National Security Council, and he recalled Gordon Sondland, the U.S. Ambassador to the European Union.
Those firings were a no-brainer, but Trump didn’t stop there. Top Trump officials are rolling out a series of actions to combat the growing epidemic of sanctuary policies by Democrat-ruled states, counties, and cities which try to shelter illegal aliens from deportation by federal authorities.
At 5 p.m. on February 5 — virtually the exact moment that Trump was being acquitted by the Senate — the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published official notice that New York residents are no longer eligible to participate in the trusted traveler programs known as Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI and FAST. These federal programs depend on state driver’s license data.
A shocking new law passed by the Democrat state legislature and signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo prohibits the state motor vehicle bureau from sharing driver’s license data with Immigration and Customs Enforcement, known simply as ICE.
As a result of this interference by New York with Trump’s policy, he ordered DHS to deny permits to about 86,000 New Yorkers who have applications pending, and to return their $100 fee. Another 800,000 New Yorkers who are already enrolled won’t be able to renew when their five-year permits expire.
Driver’s license databases are the primary source of data for federal agencies to check DUIs or other serious traffic offenses, which disqualify anyone from becoming a trusted traveler. Trump’s new policy does not yet apply to the Transportation Security Administration, which runs the popular airport Pre-Check program, because TSA still has access to state driver’s license data.
DHS acting deputy secretary Ken Cuccinelli warned that in the future New Yorkers might be excluded from Pre-Check, too. If Trump were to shut off TSA privileges for frequent New York travelers, then liberal officials would quickly back down in their defiance.
New York’s radical state AG promptly filed a lawsuit against DHS, but it’s becoming less likely that a holdover Obama judge will be able to stop Trump policies from taking effect. With nearly 200 judges appointed by Trump to the federal courts, including 50 to the all-important Courts of Appeals, actions by the Trump Administration are no longer repeatedly slapped down as they were before.
Even if Trump’s new policy falls into the hostile hands of an Obama judge, there’s still the Supreme Court, which has already stayed at least three nationwide injunctions against Trump after lower federal courts refused to do so. The Supreme Court allowed Trump’s policies on DACA, transgenders in the military, and the public charge rule for immigrants to go into immediate effect while courts consider liberal lawsuits against them.
New York is the 13th state to grant driver’s licenses to illegal aliens, a horrible policy that helps illegals evade law enforcement. But New York went even further by banning the sharing of information about DUIs, based on the stereotype that Hispanic immigrants, and illegal aliens in particular, are disproportionately convicted of that serious offense.
In her first run for president in 2008, Hillary Clinton tried to take a moderate position on this highly inflammatory issue of driver’s licenses for illegal aliens. By her 2016 campaign Hillary had shifted to the more radical position espoused by the open-borders lobby.
Trump, meanwhile, has long spoken out against the harboring of criminal aliens in sanctuary cities. He has often appeared with the victims or their survivors such as Jamiel Shaw, Mary Ann Mendoza, and Ronil Singh.
On February 10, Attorney General William Barr promised a “significant escalation” of the government’s war against sanctuary cities, counties, and states that have openly defied federal immigration laws in their jurisdictions. Barr announced new lawsuits against New Jersey and King County, Washington.
Now the Democrats’ worst fears are being realized, as their own failed impeachment has “unleashed” Trump. The President puts pedal to the metal to execute the agenda that he ran on in 2016.
Impeachment Discredits Dems, not Trump
There are many silver linings in the crashing of the Democrats’ unsuccessful attempt to impeach and remove President Trump. His approval rating surpasses Obama’s corresponding rating at this time, with Trump attaining a 49% approval rating in the latest Gallup poll.
The impeachment failure has a long-term benefit too. Impeachment should never again be a viable option for one political party merely to retaliate against the president of another political party.
The lack of bipartisan support in the House for the impeachment of Trump set off alarm bells which Democrats failed to heed. In our two-party system, no president can be impeached and removed without significant support by members of his own political party, which the impeachment of Trump never had.
Instead, Democratic leaders with delusions of grandeur thought they could make this another Watergate, when President Nixon was forced to resign amid threats of impeachment. Our society no longer takes as gospel truth the liberal television news and other media the way we did in the early 1970s.
Public approval of Congress has been abysmal in recent years, but it was not much higher during the Watergate era. What has dramatically changed between then and now is the lack of public confidence in the media which spins the news during an impeachment proceeding.
Public confidence that the media will report “the news fully, accurately, and fairly” dropped to 41% last September prior to impeachment, and only 15% among Republicans, according to the non-partisan Gallup. Two decades ago, a whopping 55% of Americans had confidence in the fairness of the media.
It was the media that drove President Nixon from office, using congressional Watergate hearings as fodder for accomplishing that goal. Democrats were hoping for a repeat this time, but the liberal media’s high level of influence is gone now, thanks in large part to Trump himself.
The Brett Kavanaugh hearings generated far more public interest and protests than the impeachment of President Trump did. Missing from impeachment were confrontations by protesters with senators in the elevator, like the one with then-Senator Jeff Flake which caused a one-week delay of the Kavanaugh confirmation vote.
Is the confirmation of one new justice for the 9-member U.S. Supreme Court really more important than an impeachment and attempted removal of the President of the United States? Many apparently think so, perhaps because the Supreme Court has wielded so much power over domestic issues like abortion, border security, LGBTQ, and the Second Amendment.
The lack of interest in the impeachment of a president may be due to how there was never any chance of it making any difference. Without bipartisan support there could never be the 67 votes required in the Senate in order to remove a president from office, and thus the impeachment is merely an exercise in futility.
Most working Americans have no interest in a parade of legal eggheads pontificating about whether an action by a president is an “impeachable offense.” If anything, the tiresome rants against President Trump demonstrated how broken Washington, D.C. is, and another election sweep by President Trump is necessary so he can complete the job he was sent there to do.
Some Republicans are suggesting that what is good for the goose will be good for the gander. Now that Democrats have lowered the standard of an impeachable offense to something as trivial as a delay in sending American taxpayer funds to a corrupt foreign country which had no entitlement to the money, Republicans could easily impeach a Democratic President at the next opportunity.
Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA), up for reelection in Iowa, has already pointed out that Joe Biden could be impeached using the new low standard adopted by Democrats who tried to get Trump. A future Republican House and Senate could return the favor of routine impeachment in spades, if they wanted to stoop as low as the House Democrats have.
Senator Ernst’s observation should cause Democrats to think twice before voting to remove President Trump. While it is unlikely that future Republicans would ever start this kind of impeachment drivel against a Democratic president, if Democrats persist against Trump then it is comforting to know that it could boomerang on them.
Never again should an impeachment be based on secret hearings, refusals to charge a crime, or reliance on Deep State bureaucrats with gripes over policy differences. When a presidential election is less than a year away, the people should be ones who decide whether to reelect a president, not inside-the-Beltway career politicians who are too biased to be credible.
Gun Advocates Rock Richmond
As liberal politicians take control of the Commonwealth of Virginia, they are getting a healthy dose of grassroots resistance by legally armed citizens. A massive crowd of 22,000 descended on its state capitol in Richmond, and the Democratic governor overreacted by declaring an inappropriate state of emergency.
Unlike the women’s march which left trash all over D.C. after Trump’s inauguration three years ago, this peaceful protest by Second Amendment advocates even picked up the garbage afterwards. The gun groups are motivated, in contrast with media-created protests that quickly fade as the women’s rights march has.
Many armed participants at the January 20th rally said they are just getting started. And they have President Trump enthusiastically on their side.
Trump tweeted that “The Democrat Party in the Great Commonwealth of Virginia are working hard to take away your 2nd Amendment rights. This is just the beginning. Don’t let it happen, VOTE REPUBLICAN in 2020!”
This issue separates Republicans and Democrats more clearly than almost any other issue. Two recent votes in the Virginia Senate for gun control were along party lines, with all Democrats voting in favor of sweeping new restrictions on guns while all Republicans voted against them.
Virginia Gov. Ralph “Blackface” Northam has vowed to sign into law strict gun control legislation. This would include senseless rationing by limiting handgun purchases to only one per month.
Rationing the number of gun purchases by law-abiding citizens would seem to be a violation of the Second Amendment, just as limiting the amount that someone can say or hear would violate the First Amendment. How about limiting the number of bills that a legislature can pass?
Ignoring the Constitution, the Democrat-controlled Virginia Senate approved this one-handgun-per-month limit on gun purchases on an entirely party-line vote. The Democrats also pushed through additional gun control that requires new background checks for private exchanges of firearms.
The gun control legislation encourages and authorizes outright bans on firearms at public events. Guns can be most helpful at those events to protect against a mass shooting, as recently occurred in Texas when an alert worshipper stopped a massacre by shooting the killer during a church service.
The type of tyranny imposed by Gov. Northam against the peaceful protesters is a sign of what is to come if there is no push-back on gun control legislation. He panicked against the peaceful grassroots gathering by banning the carrying of weapons on the grounds of the state capitol.
Liberals in the media had hysterically predicted violence, which never occurred. The liberal marches after President Trump’s inauguration resulted in vandalism of stores, but nothing similar was caused by the Second Amendment supporters.
The gun control agenda supported by Virginia Democrats includes broad “red flag” provisions which would authorize law enforcement to seize guns lawfully owned by citizens based on a mere suspicion of a possible safety threat. The right to bear arms would not mean much if it can be arbitrarily taken away under the guise of suspicion.
Some Virginia sheriffs announced that they will not enforce the gun control legislation if it becomes law. Towns throughout Virginia could become a new type of sanctuary where the Second Amendment is respected.
How did gun control zealots get elected in a commonwealth which voted Republican in every presidential election from 1952 through 2004 (except 1964)? Virginia was home to four of our first five presidents, and once held the largest percentage of Electoral College votes ever: 15.9% in 1792.
A combination of election spending by an out-of-state billionaire, a flood of immigration, and liberal federal employees have turned Virginia from red to blue politically. In this backyard of the NRA, pro-gun control Democrats took control of the statehouse for the first time in a quarter century in the last election.
Billionaire Mike Bloomberg vastly outspent the NRA in Virginia, which was able to contribute only $350,000 to the Second Amendment side. Bloomberg-funded Everytown for Gun Safety spent $2.5 million, including efforts by Moms Demand Action.
Texas has a whopping 38 Electoral College votes in presidential elections, and will pick up more in the new census. Two of those Electors were “faithless” in 2016 by refusing to vote for Trump despite how he carried the state.
The Supreme Court just accepted a case to decide if Electors can vote contrary to the vote of the people in presidential elections. With the vast sums of money in politics pushing gun control, it is frightening to imagine what might happen in a close presidential election if switching sides were allowed in the Electoral College.