Eagle Forum Agenda | December 2003 - January 2004

Contents:

EAGLE FORUM ANNOUNCES: Lynden-Area TEEN EAGLE Group

I N S I D E R E P O R T

La Conner Needs to Clean Up Voter Rolls

Justice Served

Culture War Victory

Bush Signs Partial Birth Abortion Ban Into Law

Massachusetts's Ruling Said to be Next Roe vs. Wade

Survey Shows Homeschoolers New Political Force

State Sen. Dino Rossi Announces Run for Governor

Ergonomically Correct Voters


EAGLE FORUM ANNOUNCES:
Lynden-Area TEEN EAGLE Group


A booth at the Northwest Washington fair. Promoting the pro-life agenda. Having dinner with the president. These were just some of the ambitions of the nine teenagers who met for the introductory meeting of Teen Eagles on Tuesday, November 18th. Along with the nine teenagers, there were also six parents who attended the meeting. Those present received an information packet that included an agenda, information concerning future club meetings and curriculum to be read before the next meeting, to be held on January 13, 2004.

The meeting was started with prayer, the Pledge of Allegiance and questions from an American trivia game, of which the teens were able to answer quite a few. We listened as the adult leaders talked about the purpose of Teen Eagles, what we will have the opportunity to participate in as a Teen Eagle, and of course, Eagle Forum national leader Phyllis Schlafly. We were excited at the thought of participating in campaigns, meeting elected officials, and taking a fieldtrip to Olympia.

After the information time, we took a break for Italian Sodas and cookies prepared by the Eagle Forum ladies. The teens decided that these refreshments should become a tradition at all future meetings. When we settled back into the meeting, Teen Eagle leader Jenny instructed us to split in half and come up with three things we would like to see happen this year, and two issues we would like to discuss. We came up with a pretty large list, ranging from pursuing the study of our nation's history to visiting its capitol. All in all the meeting was very enjoyable and informative.


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I N S I D E R E P O R T
News You're Not Likely to Hear Anywhere Else

La Conner Needs to Clean Up Voter Rolls

La Conner has an unusual voter problem-too many registered voters. Apparently, there are almost as many registered voters as there are residents in the small town of 775. That leaves little room for unregistered voters or those too young too vote. (the state average of registered voters is approx. 76%). Because elections can be won or lost by one vote this is a serious problem.

Washington state has now implemented a voter registration database that is designed to identify duplicate voter registrations. It will also screen felons who have lost their right to vote and will detect those who have moved out of state. These are much needed reforms that will clean up the voter rolls and lead to more secure elections. We have less confidence in the move toward touch screen voting, which has yet to be verified as secure. The trend toward all mail-in-voting also makes our elections vulnerable to fraud. There needs to be a system of accountability that ensures those who register are legitimate and eligible to vote.

Keep in mind when you hear complaints about low voter turnout that many registrations are likely not even valid, and removing the dead wood would proportionately bump up the percentage of voter participation.

 

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Justice Served

While a Ten Commandments monument belonging to Judge Roy Moore was ordered removed in Alabama, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals refused to order the removal of a Ten Commandments monument on the Texas State Capitol grounds in Austin. The Court began its decision by noting, "The Ten Commandments have both a religious and secular message." Given that message, the Court held that the State of Texas had a secular purpose for displaying the monument. The Court also pointed out, "Even those who would see the Decalogue as wise counsel born of man's experience rather than as divinely inspired religious teaching cannot deny its influence upon the civil and criminal laws of this country. That extraordinary influence has been repeatedly acknowledged by the Supreme Court and detailed by scholars. Equally so is its influence upon ethics and the ideal of a just society." The Court concluded its opinion by acknowledging the Ten Commandments' influence on American law and stating, "There is no constitutional right to be free of government endorsement of its own laws."

The Federalist Society

 

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Culture War Victory

In Austin, Texas, not only will the Ten Commandments monument remain on the State Capitol grounds, but a broad-based boycott by contractors has stopped construction of Planned Parenthood's $6.2-million abortion clinic in Austin, Texas. Construction-industry executive Chris Danze notes that building an abortion clinic would be tantamount to building a concentration camp during the Holocaust. "We can't just look the other way. We can't just take the blood money and run." James Browning, of Browning Construction, said, "I never thought so many different trades would join in." But they have, and none of them want the blood of innocents on their hands.

The Federalist Society

 

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Bush Signs Partial Birth Abortion Ban Into Law
Wednesday, November 5, 2003 marked a long awaited victory for pro-life advocates. President Bush signed a bill outlawing the horrifying procedure known as partial-birth abortion. He made the following outstanding comments at the signing ceremony:

"This right to life cannot be granted or denied by government," the president said, "because it does not come from government. It comes from the Creator of life. For years, a terrible form of violence has been directed against children who are inches from birth, while the law looked the other way. Today, at last, the American people and our government have confronted the violence and come to the defense of the innocent child. Our nation owes its children a different and better welcome. Every person, however frail or vulnerable, has a place and a purpose in this world."

Even though a recent USA Today/CNN/Gallup poll found that 70% of the country supports the ban, news coverage of President Bush's signing the ban on partial-birth abortion was predictable. Nearly every report used the same word to describe the ban- "controversial."

One hour later a federal judge blocked the ban from taking affect in 13 states. What else from a runaway judiciary?

 

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Massachusetts's Ruling Said to be Next Roe vs. Wade
Repercussions of Gay Marriage Disastrous for Society

The Massachusetts Supreme Court in an outrageous over reach of judicial review ruled on November 18 that their state legislature needs to determine within 180 days whether to grant the right of marriage to gay couples. At the risk of sounding dramatic, Tuesday, November 18 was a very dark day in our nation. In many ways, it rivals the day, back in 1973, when the Supreme Court ruled that the murder of innocent children would be legal in our country.

With a one vote majority the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts invented a right of "same-sex marriage" and usurped the constitutional authority of the state legislature. Why does a court's decision on the other side of the country, in another state, cause our hearts to skip more than just one beat, and bring us to our knees before our God? Because when it comes to the issue of marriage, one state's decision affects the entire country. Activists will use the "full faith and credit" clause in the U.S. Constitution to demand that all states recognize Massachusetts marriages between homosexuals.

What's next? The Massachusetts state legislature could amend the state's Constitution to limit marriage to unions of one man and one woman.

This is what the state legislatures of both Hawaii and Alaska did in the 1990's when confronted by similar court rulings, and it is what the Massachusetts legislature should do now. The problem is that the 180 days the Court has allowed for action is insufficient to complete the process of amending the Constitution. A Marriage Affirmation and Protection Amendment ("MA&PA") is already pending in the legislature, and is scheduled for a vote on February 11. However, approval by two consecutive legislatures and a public referendum is necessary for the amendment to take effect - a process that can be completed by November of 2006 at the earliest.

We have only one option and that is an amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Anything less and we face a hostile U.S. Supreme Court that will strike down any legislative act by Congress that seeks to preserve the traditional understanding of marriage. It will be a difficult process because it requires two-thirds approval in both houses of Congress and ratification by 38 states but Americans are with us on this issue. By a margin of 59% to 32% the American public rejects homosexual "marriage". Even Democrat lawmakers understand that most Americans want traditional marriage preserved in law and should support a constitutional amendment.

Let them hear our urgent message of support for the Federal Marriage Amendment (FMA).

White House: (202) 456-1111
Capitol Switch Board: (202) 224-3121

 

 

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Survey Shows Homeschoolers New Political Force

An unprecedented new study of adults who were homeschooled shows them far more likely than the average American to be civically minded and engaged in their local communities. The survey, taken of 7,300 homeschooled adults, points to some remarkable findings. The biggest story behind the survey is not only does homeschooling turn out more active citizens, it produces Americans who tend in overwhelming numbers to hold conservative values. That's because most homeschooling families follow a traditional Judeo-Christian worldview and believe in the concepts of liberty and limited government along with active participation by citizens.

Survey shows homeschoolers more involved in politics and community:
Homeschool graduates work for political candidates, contribute to campaigns and vote in much higher percentages than the general population of the U.S. For example, 76 percent of homeschool graduates surveyed between the ages of 18 to 24 voted within the last five years, compared to only 29 last five years, compared to only 29 percent of the corresponding U.S. population.

For example, 76 percent of homeschool graduates surveyed between the ages of 18 to 24 voted within the last five years, compared to only 29 percent of the corresponding U.S. population.

Homeschool graduates in older age brackets show even higher numbers, with voting levels of 95 percent or higher compared to a high of 53 percent for the relevant U.S. populace.

Homeschool graduates in older age brackets show even higher numbers, with voting levels of 95 percent or higher compared to a high of 53 percent for the relevant U.S. populace.

Only 4 percent of the homeschool graduates surveyed consider politics and government too complicated to understand compared to 35 percent of U.S. adults.

The study also shows 71 percent of the homeschool graduates participate in an ongoing community service activity such as coaching a sports team, volunteering at a school or working with a church or neighborhood association, compared to 37 percent of U.S. adults of similar ages.
According to some estimates, the number of homeschoolers in the U.S. is as high as 2.5 million.

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State Sen. Dino Rossi Announces Run for Governor

Ending speculation about who will be the Republican candidate for governor, conservative State Sen. Dino Rossi announced his plans to run for the state's top administrative job. He is convinced that voters are ready for a change and that he can win.

Sen. Rossi became a prominent leader during state budget negotiations and was able to close a $2.5 billion dollar budget gap without raising taxes. As chairman of the Ways and Means Committee he worked out a no-new-taxes budget that was passed with bi-partisan support.

The Democrats have 3 candidates running to succeed Gary Locke who has decided not to run again: King County Executive Ron Sims, Attorney General Christine Gregoire and former Supreme Court Justice Phil Talmadge. With 3 very liberal Democrats running for governor expect to see a bruising primary battle.

A recent poll showed that 66 percent of voters think the state is on the wrong track.

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ERGONOMICALLY CORRECT VOTERS:
Washington's election receives national attention from Wall Street Journal

By 53% to 47%, the state's voters repealed so called "ergonomics" rules designed to provide for workplace safety. Developed by the Washington Department of Labor and Industries, the rules would have limited workers to two to four hours a day of "repetitive" motions or working in uncomfortable positions.

The rules were dreamed up by the same folks who tried to impose ergonomic regulation on the entire country in the latter days of the Clinton Administration. Those burdens on business were repealed by a bipartisan majority in Congress early in 2001. So the activists (backed by unions and trial lawyers) have since moved on to the states, and they found a receptive audience in Washington's Democratic Governor Gary Locke. The state legislature couldn't agree to overturn the rules, so state businesses united to put them on the ballot.

The repeal effort was led by the aggressive Building Industry Association of Washington, but the regulations were so vague and burdensome that repeal also won support from normally cautious corporations such as Boeing and Weyerhaeuser. Opponents estimated that the rules would have cost $725 million in the first year alone. The rules were summarized in a 126-page "concise explanatory statement" heavy enough that, as one opponent joked, lifting it was probably a violation of one of the rules.

The rules would have applied to a huge swath of the state's economy, everyone from grocery checkers to landscapers, couriers and even nursing home employees. Naturally, the vagueness of the regulations would have been tested in court, an open invitation to trial lawyers to take one more bite out of business.

This repeal is especially remarkable given that Washington is supposed to be a center-left state dominated by Democrats. An August poll by the Washington State Labor Council found only 29% in favor of repeal, with 45% opposed. But voters were swayed by arguments that the rules would place Washington at a competitive disadvantage with other states and perhaps lead to further job loss. Washington has already lost 96,000 jobs, or 3.5% of its workforce, in the past two years. The state's seasonally adjusted jobless rate was 7.6% in September, well above the national rate of 6.1%.

Forces favoring regulation typically have the easier political task because they are advocating things ("safe workplaces") that everyone wants. But if they're given the right information and arguments, voters are smart enough to understand that government regulation also has costs. If ergonomics rules can't pass in Washington, they probably can't pass anywhere.

WSJ 11/17/03

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