The Star News Network has identified the Biden administration official repeatedly blocking the camera shot of Sen. Ted Cruz (R.-Texas) as he filmed the migrant conditions at the U.S. Customs and Border detention facility in Donna, Texas as Sigrid Gonzales.
That Gonzales, is the woman in the video and a senior advisor to Troy Miller, the senior official performing the duties of the CBP Commissioner, was confirmed by a Capitol Hill source familiar with the Cruz delegation’s visit with the Donna facility.
“Please respect these people, the rules,” Gonzales said to Cruz. “This is not a zoo,” as she moved left and right with Cruz to interfere with him as he tried to capture video of the migrants piled into cramped pens. Read More
The Knox County Commission finalized its vote to eliminate the Knox County Board of Health’s powers on Monday, effectively rendering it an advisory body. The final vote in favor of the measure, 8-3, wasn’t as close as the previous vote. The final vote was originally scheduled for the end of April, as The Tennessee Star reported in January, but the commission voted during last week’s meeting to vote on this measure during Monday’s meeting.
The Star inquired with Chairman Larsen Jay about the commission’s decision-making. Specifically, we inquired what caused the shift within the commission to be more supportive of the measure. Jay didn’t respond by press time. He voted “no” alongside Commissioners Dasha Lundy and Courtney Durrett. Read More
Drop dead. That’s the Biden administration’s message to victims of criminal illegal immigrants in joint stipulations submitted to the Supreme Court this month. The stipulations dismiss petitions filed last year asking the court to review two sanctuary city cases.
More on those cases later. In the Democratic fairy tale, sanctuary policies signal to victims of crime who are in the country illegally that they can work with police without fear of deportation — improving public safety. Sanctuary cities, goes the story, are safe cities. Read More
More than 850 criminals have been encountered at the U.S. border with Mexico this year, including 92 sex offenders and 63 gang members, a U.S. Border Patrol agent tweeted this weekend.
Included among “the copious amounts of groups being encountered” at the Rio Grande Valley, Hastings said, are “a Salvadoran man with a prior conviction for murder” along with 862 criminals, Chief Patrol Agent Brian Hastings tweeted. Read More
RIO GRANDE VALLEY — The overcrowded Customs and Border Protection facility holding migrants in Donna, Texas, was not designed for long-term detention, National Border Patrol Council spokesman Chris Cabrera told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is holding migrants in overcrowded cells constructed from clear plastic curtains that contain a toilet, a water fountain and concrete benches, Cabrera told the DCNF on an exclusive tour near the border. Migrants are being held for long periods of time in a facility that was intended for short-term detention, Cabrera added. Read More
As the debate regarding the future of the Senate filibuster heats up, a recent report has confirmed that the Democrats, who are now advocating for its abolition, utilized the procedural stalling tactic exponentially more times than the Republicans did over the course of 2020, as reported by Breitbart.
With the Senate evenly-divided at 50 Democrats and 50 Republicans, most legislation will not be able to pass without at least 60 votes in favor due to the filibuster. As such, Democrats – who technically maintain control with Vice President Kamala Harris able to serve as the tie-breaking vote – have begun advocating for eliminating the filibuster in order to rush through some of the most radical items on their agenda without any Republican support. Read More
Bryant University in Smithfield, Rhode Island will close its Confucius Institute, according to an announcement by President Ross Gittell.
“After 15 years of values language and cultural programs provided through the Confucius Institute at Bryant University, we have chosen not to apply for continued funding at the expiration of the Confucius Institute contract,” Gittell wrote on March 22, “The university will evaluate changes that are taking place in China regarding U.S.-China Relations before making any future commitment.”
Gittell maintained that developing students’ “global mindset is a cornerstone of Bryant’s mission,” noting that the university will still offer “high quality business education through our curriculum offerings in Zhuhai [China].” Read More
Voters will likely see on the ballot an amendment confirming that faith leaders and teachers can lawfully join the legislature. The Supreme Court (SCOTUS) ruled in McDaniel v. Paty, et al. in 1978 that this provision was unconstitutional. It is unclear why Tennessee never updated its constitution to strike that provision. It is also unclear what the legislature could do if voters were to turn down the amendment.
The proposed resolution by State Senator Mark Pody (R-Lebanon) reaffirms SCOTUS rejection of excluding individuals from the legislative process based on their status as a recognized teacher or leader within the Christian faith. Read More
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said Monday that a mileage tax won’t be included in President Joe Biden’s infrastructure proposal.
Buttigieg told CNN anchor Jake Tapper the tax is “not part of the conversation about this infrastructure bill,” despite floating the idea of taxing people based on how far they drive last week. Read More
Tuesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Executive Director of 2ndvote.com Amy Wilhite to the studio to discuss her website’s mission and how consumers can make an educated choice and vote a second time with their wallets. Read More
Formerly incarcerated people can reenter society with faith and with Christians offering them a strong system of support. These were among some of the remarks that various people made at a virtual forum that members of the Antioch-based Men of Valor prison ministry held this month. Read More
The World Health Organization dedicated a little over one page to dismissing the lab leak theory at the very end of its 123-page COVID-19 origins report, according to a draft copy obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
The draft report stated that the only way to increase scientific knowledge surrounding the theory that COVID-19 leaked from a lab in Wuhan, China, would be to conduct “[r]egular administrative and internal review of high-level biosafety laboratories worldwide.” Read More
A Hong Kong-based think tank suspected of working as a front group for the Chinese Communist Party has cultivated close ties to Historically Black Colleges and Universities and members of the Congressional Black Caucus since 2014.
The China-U.S. Exchange Foundation’s (CUSEF) outreach to the black community is part of a broad initiative to cozy up to prominent organizations in the U.S., including foreign policy think tanks and other elite universities.
CUSEF’s activities have drawn the attention of CIA Director William Burns, who testified at his Senate confirmation hearing last month that he cut ties with CUSEF when he was president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace out of concern over “Chinese influence operations.” Read More
A far-reaching plan by the Biden administration, in conjunction with private companies, to create a so-called coronavirus passport is raising privacy and transparency concerns from people of all political stripes. The plan could force Americans to get vaccinated in order to attend sporting events, vacation on a cruise ship, or fly commercially.
On the left, long-time feminist activist Naomi Wolf is sounding privacy alarms. She told Fox News, “I am not overstating this. I can’t say it forcefully enough. This is literally the end of human liberty in the West, if this plan unfolds as planned.” Read More
Tuesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed The Epoch Times Editor-At-Large Roger Simon to the studio who discussed his most recent article on Governor Ron DeSantis, the concept of new federalism, and poked fun at a run for Metro City Council. Read More
Hunter Biden and his business partner engaged in an effort to assist a fugitive Ukrainian oligarch indicted by his father’s administration, an effort that briefly captured the FBI’s attention and led one of the lawyers in the case to express concern that using the then-vice president’s son might backfire, according to emails, text messages and interviews. Read More
Georgia U.S. Rep. Drew Ferguson (R-GA-03) is co-sponsoring a bill that proposes to encourage businesses to head back to American shores. Ferguson said America needs this during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read More
Georgia is on its way to repealing a centuries-old citizens arrest law that currently allows citizens of the Peach State to detain others if a crime is committed in their presence “or within their immediate knowledge.”
Monday, HB 479 passed the Georgia Senate with a 52-1 vote. It will head back to the House where a Senate amendment giving business owners the right to detain suspected thieves will be voted open. Read More
New U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and Congressman Don Beyer (D-Virginia-08) joined Governor Ralph Northam at Alexandria’s Amtrak station Tuesday. Northam announced a partnership with Amtrak, CSX and the Virginia Rail Express (VRE). The partnership includes a $3.7 billion investment into expanding infrastructure, funded by Amtrak, state, and regional partners. Read More
An Akron man whose son died of an overdose in 2015 is on a crusade to take fentanyl, a ultra-lethal drug manufactured mostly in China and by Mexican cartels, off the streets for good.
Motivated by his son’s tragic death, James Rauh founded an organization called Families Against Fentanyl, which is taking a unique approach to fighting the manufacture and import of that drug. Read More
U.S. Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH) teased a potential run for a seat in the United States Senate on Monday, releasing a video thanking people for the suggestion and support. Read More
President Biden signed Congressman Ben Cline’s (R-Virginia-06) HR 1651, the COVID-19 Bankruptcy Relief Extension Act on Saturday, which extends a $7.5 million debt cap on bankruptcies taking advantage of a more cost-effective bankruptcy option provided by Cline’s 2019 Small Business Reorganization Act (SBRA). Read More
Owosso barber Karl Manke was handed fines amounting to $9,000 after defying Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s lockdown orders in spring 2020.
Manke garnered national headlines when he refused to close his barbershop during a barrage of executive orders issued by the governor that forced the closing of businesses Whitmer deemed nonessential throughout the state. On May 18, 2020, two days prior to the Operation Haircut protests, Manke’s barber license was suspended by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel. Read More
A Georgia state senator this week responded to the newly-passed Senate Bill 202 voter reform measure with a bill of her own. Georgia State Sen. Sally Harrell (D-Atlanta) this week filed a bill that she said would give county election supervisors and local elections boards the option to allow out-of-precinct voting on Election Day. Read More
The Office of The Legislative Auditor released an audit Monday finding the Minnesota Department of Human Services’ (DHS) Behavioral Health Division (BHD) had inadequate internal controls and violated safeguards to prevent fraud and abuse.
“Since the creation of the Behavioral Health Division in early 2018, DHS did not analyze the risks of fraud, waste, abuse, and noncompliance with legal requirements related to oversight of BHD grants,” auditors wrote. Read More
College students have had a new test to pass this school year; in fact it’s a test most have been required to pass more than once: the COVID-19 test.
When school resumed in the Fall of 2020, every higher educational institution across the United States established their individual COVID protocol plans. The 3rd largest University in the nation, The Ohio State University, jumped right in with an aggressive testing model. Read More
Final voting on a bill addressing government control over worship services during public emergencies, already heavily altered, will be delayed by one week for further potential changes. The bill’s sponsor, State Representative Rusty Grills (R-Newbern), indicated Monday that he would review the bill further to consider the concerns of Democratic State Representatives London Lamar (D-Memphis) and Harold Love, Jr. (D-Nashville). Lamar and Love raised concerns that governments couldn’t do enough to curb church activity during pandemics under the bill; Lamar argued that religious institutions would be fine if they were ordered to meet virtually.
The adopted amendment has already altered the bill entirely. The original provisions prohibited closures and limitations of churches or religious organizations, including their religious services or activities. In the amended version, the bill would only prohibit state and local governments and agencies from closing churches or religious organizations. It wouldn’t protect houses of worship from any governmental restrictions or limitations. Read More
The Tennessee House passed the bill allowing permitless open or concealed carry, dubbed the “constitutional carry bill.” It will head to Governor Bill Lee’s desk, where it’s expected to be signed.
Under the bill, anyone 21 and older could lawfully carry without a permit, for both open and concealed carry. These provisions would only apply to handguns. A slew of House amendments proposed to the bill were withdrawn. Read More
The advocacy group “Fair and Just Prosecution” says the goal of progressive criminal justice reform is to create “a justice system grounded in fairness, equity, compassion, and fiscal responsibility.” Starting around 2016, this movement picked up momentum across the United States, primarily by funding candidates in county district attorney elections. There are now dozens of cities and counties with elected district attorneys that are enforcing massive shifts in prosecutorial conduct.
Reforms were needed. But so far, they have been a disaster.
While the most visible source of funding for these district attorney candidates is the notorious George Soros, the movement is much bigger than the agenda of one billionaire. It taps a core belief of progressives, that America’s criminal justice system is punitive and disproportionately targets nonwhite and low-income communities. It also taps into a sentiment shared by progressives and libertarians, that “victimless” crimes, primarily drug related, should not be crimes at all. Read More
RealClear Opinion Research recently conducted a poll about Biden’s first 100 days in office. One of the questions asked was how important it was to get the pandemic under control and public satisfaction with results to date.
The timeline below shows total daily mentions of the pandemic across television news, showing that starting with December 31, 2020, CNN and MSNBC sharply reduced their coverage and have mentioned the pandemic this year far less than last year, while Fox News is largely mentioning it the same number of times each day. Read More
Legislators are considering whether the General Assembly should have the final say on agencies created by governor executive order.
A proposed bill would empower lawmakers to review any executive agencies created through the governor’s emergency powers. Specifically, the Joint Committee on Government Operations would decide within 60 days whether the executive agency should be allowed to exist, and notify the General Assembly within 5 days of the completion of the review. Read More
If there were ever a darling of the Canadian Country Airwaves, it would be Brett Kissel. Not only has the 30-year-old won numerous Canadian Country Music Association Awards, but he also has three number one hits and numerous top-tens on Canadian Radio.
But the main reason I wanted to interview him was because his music really is that good. His songs are all over the spectrum sonically but they resonate with the listeners.
Kissel admits that absolutely no one in his family is musical. “Not a grandpa, not a dad, an uncle, an auntie, nobody ever played music, period.”
The fact that he picked up a guitar, the fact that he can sing, the fact that he can write songs, and the fact that he moved to Nashville and made a go of it, is nothing short of remarkable. Read More
Nonprofit social advocacy organization Tennessee Stands will rally in support of an amendment for vaccine religious exemptions on Wednesday. The Senate Health and Welfare Committee will be reviewing the bill carrying the amendment that day, which seeks to prohibit government-mandated COVID-19 vaccines.
In an interview with The Tennessee Star, Tennessee Stands founder Gary Humble explained that this rally would allow Tennessee lawmakers to see the support this bill has among their constituents. Read More
After Duke University decided to end recruitment of freshmen by Greek and non-Greek selective living groups, nine fraternities decided to disaffiliate from the Interfraternity Council, and thus from the university itself.
Duke University has made several changes to Greek life since the hiring of former Tufts University dean of student affairs Mary Pat McMahon. McMahon is now the vice president and vice provost for student affairs at Duke.
McMahon collaborated with the Office of Undergraduate Education to create a new committee called the Next Generation Living and Learning 2.0 Committee in 2020. The committee seeks to “build a joyful and intentional 4-year residential experience that promotes growth, meaningful inclusion, and health, and that is distinctly Duke.” Read More
President Ronald W. Reagan former advance and body man told the Star News Network he remembers where he was when he heard 40 years ago that President Ronald W. Reagan was shot.
James F. “Jim” Kuhn said he first met Reagan in October 1975.
“He was giving a speech at the Union Club in downtown Cleveland at a businessman’s gathering and the head of the group was the CEO of the company that I worked for in Canton, Ohio, and that’s how it all got started,” Kuhn said. Read More
Last week, Kentucky was the first state legislature to pass a new program to fund students instead of systems this year. The proposal, House Bill 563, would allow eligible students to access scholarships to use at approved private education providers of their families’ choosing. But the Bluegrass State’s Democratic governor, Andy Beshear, blocked educational opportunities for thousands of children by vetoing the bill on Wednesday.
Kentucky requires a constitutional majority in both the House and Senate to override Beshear’s veto, and that vote is expected to happen Monday.
During his press conference announcing the decision, Beshear said that the bill “would greatly harm public education in Kentucky by taking money away from public schools and sending it to unaccountable private organizations with little oversight.” Read More
Political activists who call for defunding police and ending what they call systemic racism used the banner of Black Lives Matter to raise tens of millions of dollars and launch a political action committee, according to the main organization’s “2020 Impact Report.”
The 42-page report declares victories in the election of two Democrats to the U.S. Senate in Georgia’s runoffs as well as three Democrats to the U.S. House from Texas, New York, and Missouri.
The report credits the new PAC for coordinating get-out-the-vote efforts. The main Black Lives Matter organization also entered the legislative fray for the first time while making generous grants to allied organizations. Read More
There is absolutely no crisis at the southern border, and Trump caused it. Also Trump wanted small children to die at the border. I don’t. That’s just another reason people say I’m a good person.
Despite what you’ve heard, there is no surge of immigration. There’s just springtime, man. The fact that we need to open up military facilities to house this influx, well, that just shows what a fine job we are doing correcting Trump’s problems. Read More
The people behind the Nashville Taxpayer Protection Act say they need supporters to contribute money to help educate Davidson County residents about the proposed referendum. Nashville attorney Jim Roberts said they also need the money to fight the likely counteroffensive from Metro Nashville government officials, many of whom may try to discourage people from supporting the referendum. And many of Nashville’s establishment media outlets could wage their own information campaign against the referendum, Roberts said. Read More
Monday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed America’s Sheriff AJ ‘Andy’ Louderback to the newsmakers line to discuss Joe Biden’s disastrous border policies enabling immigrants to infiltrate towns throughout the nation unchecked. Read More
Monday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed author and creator of the Theology of Home project Carrie Gress, Ph.D. to the newsmakers line to discuss her book, the importance of homemaking, and the intentional feminist-Marxist destruction of the family. Read More
Faced with ongoing state lockdowns and changing school restrictions last year, frustrated parents increasingly pulled their children out of public schools nationwide and found other educational options for their children, one of which was home-schooling.
According to a new U.S. Census Bureau Household Pulse Survey, a substantial increase in the number of parents who chose to home-school occurred in 2020 compared to 2019. The survey is the first data source to offer both a national and state-level look at the impact of COVID-19 on homeschooling rates, the report states.
Using a large, nationally representative sample of U.S. households, the survey found that home-schooling was notably higher than national benchmarks. It was conducted in phases to assess parental choices over different periods of the school year. Read More
On Monday, former Delegate Winsome Sears, candidate for the Republican nomination for Lieutenant Governor in Virginia, was endorsed by gubernatorial candidates State Senator Amanda Chase (I-Chesterfield) and former Roanoke City Sheriff Octavia Johnson. The dual endorsements have caused a tremendous uproar in a race that until today was considered rather quiet. Read More
A Georgia woman has admitted to creating a fake business and using it to receive funding from a federal COVID-19 small business relief program.
This, according to a press release that the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Georgia published this month.
Tracy Kirkland, 40, of Swainsboro, pled guilty to an Information charging her with wire fraud, said David H. Estes, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia.
“As described in court documents and testimony, in August 2020 Kirkland received a federally guaranteed loan for $66,400 under the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program comprised of funds appropriated by the CARES Act,” the press release said. Read More
Michigan has seen a huge spike in teacher retirements during the past year, with many of those teachers citing COVID-19 restrictions as the reason for calling it quits.
“From August through February, there was a 44 percent increase in midyear retirements compared with the same period in 2019-2020 as 749 teachers left public school classrooms in the middle of the school year, state data show,” Crain’s Business Detroit reported. Read More
“Normalcy is on the horizon,” Gov. Tim Walz told Minnesotans in his 2021 State of the State speech.
Walz delivered his speech Sunday night from his old Mankato classroom.
The state is recovering quickly from the global pandemic, he said, with 80% of seniors having a single vaccine dose and two-thirds of school personnel vaccinated. Starting Tuesday, he said, all Minnesotans ages 16 and older will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. Read More
A new Georgia voter integrity law that requires, among other things, voter ID on absentee ballots, has prompted talk that Major League Baseball and the Professional Golfers’ Association might cancel major events in the Peach State. And at least one major Hollywood director said he now wants nothing to do with Georgia. Read More
Ohio opened vaccinations up to all residents ages 16 and older on March 29, a move that had been announced earlier this month by Gov. Mike DeWine. Read More
University of Michigan’s ADVANCE program has been hit with allegations of discrimination, with former employees accusing its leadership of allowing microaggressions and a toxic environment to fester, among other claims.
The program employs about a dozen people and is focused on faculty recruitment, retention, climate and leadership development as it works “to address necessary institutional changes to support the needs of a diverse faculty in all fields,” its website reads.
An investigative piece by The Michigan Daily, the school’s student-run newspaper, found 12 alleged instances of discrimination and a hostile work environment spanning eight years from 2012 to 2020. Read More
Metro Transit’s light rail lost more than half of its riders in 2020, but crime continued to flourish on the empty trains, according to documents obtained by Alpha News.
Light rail saw a decrease in ridership of 59% last year, largely due to an upsurge in telecommuters who no longer travel for work because of COVID-19.
Despite the diminishing ridership numbers, crime continued to ravage the passenger rail and its stations in 2020. Adjusting for 2020’s abnormally large decrease in ridership shows that the crime rate actually increased significantly in 2020. Read More