Georgia Star News Exclusive: Fulton County Election Official Admits Chain of Custody Documents Missing for 2020 Absentee Ballots Deposited in Drop Boxes

In a stunning admission about the critical chain of custody documents for absentee ballots deposited into drop boxes in the November 3, 2020, election, Fulton County election officials have said that “some procedural paperwork may have been misplaced.”

This is the first time that an election official has made an admission regarding the occurrence of significant election issues.

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U.S. Army Official Brings News About Fort Campbell’s Current Funding Status

No known cuts are coming to Fort Campbell in this year’s defense budget, but the installation has other longstanding problems that need resolving. Vice Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Joseph Martin addressed these matters during a U.S. House Armed Services Committee hearing last week.

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Commentary: Media Begins Its Meddling in the 2024 Primary

Paul Ryan wearing a red shirt and waving

In March 2018, then-House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) took to the lectern to announce he had received “assurances” that President Trump was not considering firing special counsel Robert Mueller. “We have a system based upon the rule of law in this country.” A month later, Ryan announced his retirement from Congress. 

In July 2018, Ryan refused to permit an effort to impeach then-Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein for obstructing congressional inquiries into the Russian collusion hoax. Ryan’s protection of Mueller and his untimely retirement helped tip the 2018 midterm elections against his party and Nancy Pelosi has held the speaker’s gavel ever since then. 

Mueller should have been fired and Ryan should have urged Trump to do it. Mueller proved himself to be a fumbling and doddering fool unable to grasp the basics of the investigation he supposedly led. The real directors of the witch hunt, Trump haters led by Andrew Weissman, abused the powers of the special counsel to leak, smear, and harass the sitting president. It was, from the very start, a political operation intended to deny Trump the full freedom and powers an elected president normally would enjoy. It wasn’t quite a coup because power didn’t change hands. But it added to the continuing loss of confidence Americans have in achieving political change through elections. 

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New Movement Teaches American Kids How to Think, Not What to Think

Girl student standing and holding books in hand in a classroom

An American educator is persuading schools to implement viewpoint diversity in the classroom.

Erin McLaughlin is a teacher from Pennsylvania who is making headlines with her approach to classroom instruction. She argues that viewpoint diversity, which is teaching students how to think rather than what to think, should be at the center of many curriculums.

McLaughlin, in an interview with The College Fix, said that it is the job of educators to teach children how to process things as opposed to what to advocate for.

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Husband of Ashli Babbitt Files Lawsuit to Demand Name of Capitol Police Officer Who Killed Her

Ashli Babbitt

The widower of Ashi Babbitt, the Air Force veteran who was killed by a Capitol Police officer on January 6th, has filed a lawsuit seeking to finally uncover the name of the guilty officer, the New York Post reports.

Aaron Babbitt filed the lawsuit in the Washington D.C. Superior Court, demanding all information related to his wife’s murder, including video footage and statements from witnesses to the incident, in addition to seeking the identity of the officer who fired the fatal shot. Separately from this lawsuit, Babbitt’s family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit for $12 million against the Capitol Police, according to the Babbitt family’s attorney Terry Roberts.

Babbitt had previously filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request with the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department (MPD), but the MPD failed to respond by the original May 12th deadline, by which time they either had to provide the material or give a formal response explaining why they could not hand over the materials.

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Commentary: The Rise of ‘Bull Moose’ Populism Is What’s Giving Life to the GOP

former President Teddy Roosevelt exhorts the crowd during his unsuccessful run for another term: the "Bull Moose" Campaign -- Barre, Vermont, August 31, 1912.

Former President Teddy Roosevelt felt “strong as a bull moose” after losing the Republican presidential nomination in 1912. Now, thanks to President Donald Trump’s legacy, that “bull moose” energy is on the winning side of the GOP’s 2022 primary season.

There are many labels for the movement I describe as “Bull Moose” populism. It’s mainly known as America First, National Conservatism, National Populism, the “New” Right, or Trumpism. Whatever its name, the candidates who can articulate the vision best will see the most passionate grassroots support in 2022 and beyond.

To that end, the “Bull Moose” moniker is useful, because it harkens back over a century to a time when, in certain ways, American politics was just objectively better. There was fortitude and will, even forcefulness, that commanded respect. President Trump embodied that approach not unlike our 26th president, the Rough Rider himself, and so it should come as no surprise that their visions are so alike.

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Albion College Makes Kendi’s ‘How to Be an Antiracist’ Required Reading for First-Year Students

Ibram X. Kendi

Albion College recently announced its selection for the 2021 Common Reading Experience: “How to Be an Antiracist” by Ibram X. Kendi. The Richard M. Smith Common Reading Experience is a mandatory program for all first-year students.

According to the school’s website, “all of Albion’s first-year students read a shared text that serves both to connect students to one another and to help them make the important shift from high school to college.”

In an email addressed to the Albion Community on Wednesday, June 2, 2021, the Common Reading Experience (CRE) Taskforce revealed that it had chosen the book for the first-year mandatory curriculum. 

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Biden Lifts Economic Ban on Chinese Military Tech Company

Sugon device

Joe Biden signed an executive order updating the United States’ list of blacklisted Chinese companies, dropping the ban on at least one company that was originally put on the list by President Donald Trump, the Washington Free Beacon reports.

Biden lifted the blacklist on the company Sugon, which was first banned by President Trump in November of 2020. The company is responsible for selling “supercomputers” to the Chinese military, for use in nuclear weapons research. Sugon also specializes in facial recognition software, cloud computing, and other surveillance technology that has been used by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) against the Uyghur Muslim population.

Although Biden’s updated list still maintains bans on such companies as Huawei and Hikvision, the removal of Sugon was noted as “strange” by Michael Sobolik, a fellow with the American Foreign Policy Council.

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Suicide Attempts Among Adolescents Skyrocketed During the Pandemic, CDC Report Shows

Kid with head in hands

Suicide-related emergency room visits among both adolescent girls and boys spiked amid the pandemic and continued to surge as lockdowns persisted, according to a government health report.

Emergency room (ER) mental health visits increased 31% among children aged 12-17 years old in 2020 compared to the previous year, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report released Friday. The CDC noted that, while it couldn’t definitively establish a cause, it’s likely that pandemic-related restrictions on everyday life could be to blame for the increase.

“Young persons might represent a group at high risk because they might have been particularly affected by mitigation measures, such as physical distancing (including a lack of connectedness to schools, teachers, and peers); barriers to mental health treatment; increases in substance use; and anxiety about family health and economic problems,” the report stated.

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Biden Bureau of Land Management Nominee Tracy Stone-Manning Was Involved in ‘Eco-Terrorism’ Case, Resulted in College Roommate’s Conviction, Prison Sentence, Court Records Show

Tracy Stone-Manning

President Joe Biden’s nominee to lead the Bureau of Land Management, Tracy Stone-Manning, received legal immunity to testify in a 1993 criminal trial, court documents obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation show. The trial resulted in a 17 month prison sentence for tree spiking, a violent tactic used to prevent logging.

Stone-Manning testified that she sent an anonymous and threatening letter to the Forest Service in 1989 on behalf of John P. Blount, who she identified as her former roommate and a member of her circle of friends, court documents show. The letter warned that a local forest in Idaho set to be logged had been sabotaged with tree spikes, according to the documents.

“P.S. You bastards go in there anyway and a lot of people could get hurt,” the letter stated.

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Four States to Slash COVID-19 Unemployment Aid Saturday

Man in gray shirt, standing in a shop

Four states will be cutting pandemic unemployment increases three months early, ending the supplemental $300 in federal aid.

Alaska, Iowa, Missouri, and Mississippi will end pandemic-related unemployment relief on June 12. An additional 21 Republican-led states will slash federal aid before it expires on Sept. 6, according to Business Insider.

Conservatives continue to advocate an end to the increased benefits, saying they are no longer needed now that the pandemic is contained and speculating that the high payouts are discouraging would-be workers from returning.

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New York Mayoral Candidate Refuses to Answer Whether She Thinks the U.S. Is Comparable to the Taliban

Screen capture from video of Democratic candidate for NY mayor

New York City mayoral candidate Maya Wiley would not say whether she thinks the U.S. is comparable to the Taliban Thursday, video shows.

Wiley was questioned about Minnesota Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar’s comments comparing the U.S. and Israel to the Taliban and Hamas, video shows. She refused to answer and added that she was proud of her multiple congressional endorsements.

“I am not going to answer this question because I have been, actually, just come out of the debate, I appreciate you asking,” Wiley said in the video.

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James Murdoch Gave $20 Million to Biden, Progressive Groups in 2020

James Murdoch

James Murdoch funneled $100 million into his Quadrivium Foundation, which gives to many progressive causes, and donated another $20 million to Democratic groups, CNBC reported.

James and his wife Kathryn Murdoch, who are notoriously active political donors, gave $20 million to President Joe Biden’s campaign, groups opposed to former President Donald Trump and other political organizations in 2020, CNBC reported. The report didn’t specify how much was given to Biden last year, but the couple reportedly gave $12.2 million to federal political action committees (PAC) that support Democratic candidates, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

James Murdoch, the son of billionaire media mogul Rupert Murdoch who developed Fox News, gave $300,000 to Unite the Country, $500,000 to Change Now PAC and $120,000 to America’s Progressive Promise PAC among other donations last year, according to Center for Responsive Politics data. Meanwhile, Kathryn Murdoch contributed at least $6 million to Unite America, $1 million to Senate Majority PAC and $1.7 million to Ranked Choice Voting 2020 Committee in 2020.

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The Two Chinese Scientists Who Shipped Live Ebola Viruses from Canadian Lab to Wuhan Lab Seem to Have Disappeared

Close-up of CDC worker with gloves

The two Chinese scientists who were expelled from a high-security lab in Canada two years ago for “possible breaches of security protocols,” have allegedly disappeared amid an ongoing investigation.

The scientists, Xiangguo Qiu and her husband Keding Cheng, had their security clearances revoked, and were escorted from the lab after live Ebola, Henipah, and other deadly viruses were reportedly sent to the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China.

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Commentary: Another January 6 Falsehood: $30 Million in Damages to the Capitol

The U.S. Capitol Police on Monday morning conducted what it called a “routine” training exercise on the grounds of the Capitol. The stagecraft, almost five months to the day from the January 6 protest, involved emergency vehicles and helicopters. The agency warned area residents not to be “alarmed,” which of course was the exact reaction USCP wanted.

Call it insurrection theater. The USCP has acted as the Democratic Party’s stormtroopers since January 6, attacking peaceful Americans during the protest, lying about the death of officer Brian Sicknick, and now making officers available for embarrassing cable news hits where they share their hurt feelings and the permanent trauma they’ve suffered since enduring the supposedly harrowing ordeal. The distressed officers, however, seem just fine with the fact that a still-unidentified colleague shot and killed an unarmed woman, Air Force veteran Ashli Babbitt.

Capitol-employed apparatchiks have played a key role in shaping the narrative about what happened on January 6, all in service to their Democratic paymasters.

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‘Dark Stores’ Squeeze Michigan City Tax Revenue

Closed store entrance

Vacant big box stores in Michigan become tax-reducing boons to retail companies statewide when those establishments have property assessed at rates sometimes 50% lower than previous rates.

This is known as a “dark stores” strategy, which often leaves local taxpayers to foot the tab.

An S&P report released Thursday found the strategy is employed nationwide.

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Florida Colleges and Universities Join Name, Image, and Likeness Law Beginning July 1st

Person sitting in basketball hoop

Beginning July 1st, a new law will allow student athletes in Florida who play for a college or university the ability to profit from third-party organizations using their name, image, and likeness or NIL.

While NIL was set to be discussed on June 22nd by the Florida Board of Governors who oversee state universities, the proposal by the Board of Education Thursday established NIL rules to include state colleges within the new law.

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Gov. Walz to Extend Emergency Powers for 15th Time Monday

Gov. Tim Walz

Gov. Tim Walz plans to extend his emergency powers for another 30 days on Monday, making it the 15th month in a row that the peacetime emergency has been extended.

A Minnesota statute says that a governor who declares a peacetime emergency may have emergency powers for only five days, after which he must ask his Executive Council to extend his powers for an additional 30 days.

Walz has requested that his powers be extended 15 times since first declaring the peacetime emergency in March of 2020, and thus has had emergency powers for over 450 days.

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In Wake of Beef Supplier Attack, Wittman Co-Signs Agriculture Intelligence Measures Act

Rob Wittman and Tom Cotton

Congressman Rob Wittman (R-Virginia-01) was one of six Republicans last week who cosigned a bill that would create an Office of Intelligence in the Department of Agriculture. The bill was originally introduced by Senator Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) and Congressman Rick Crawford (R-Arkansas-02) last fall, but the current House version, HR 1625, has gradually gained Republican cosigners this spring.

“Two weeks ago, JBS, an international meat supplier, fell victim to a severe cyber attack,” Wittman explained in a Friday newsletter. “This marks the second attack targeting the production of American commodities, such as gasoline and food. This attack highlights the threat cyberattacks potentially pose to the American food supply chain.

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Val Demings Raises $1M for Senate Run, Touts Endorsements

Val Demings

U.S. Rep. Val Demings (D-FL-10) raised $1 million in the first few days of her campaign against Florida Senator Marco Rubio for the 2022 election. The early momentum comes as Democrats will be backing Demings, who will likely be the Democratic nominee for the Senate seat, to try and expand their majority in the U.S. Senate.

Florida is continuing to be a major battleground state, and Republicans, likewise, will look to gain ground in the U.S. Senate by keeping Rubio in his current post.

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Ohio Republicans at Odds Over Householder Ouster

Larry Householder

The Ohio House’s first bipartisan public move to try to expel indicted former Speaker of the House Larry Householder highlighted the divide among Republicans after Householder’s reelection following federal charges of racketeering, bribery and money laundering.

House Resolution 69 received its first hearing in front of the House Rules and Reference Committee, which is chaired by current House Speaker Bob Cupp, R-Lima. Cupp consistently has said Householder, R-Glendale, should resign.

“Representative Householder is under indictment for selling legislation, and Ohioans cannot fathom how he remains in a position to continue to introduce legislation under those circumstances,” Rep. Brian Stewart, R-Ashville, testified Thursday. “Virtually everyone associated with this scandal lost their jobs a long time ago. The only person who has not lost their job is the only person indicted for being the mastermind of the whole scandal.”

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Senator Blackburn and Fauci Go Toe-to-Toe Over His Emails and Relationship with Big Tech

Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) challenged Dr. Anthony Fauci this week over his handling of COVID-19 and apparent collusion with Big Tech. Following the mass release of Fauci’s emails through an open records request last week, Blackburn published a video Tuesday to offer some summarized insight on Fauci’s involvement in the COVID-19 outbreak and his email correspondence with Facebook.

“Here are the facts on Fauci that big tech doesn’t want you to know,” tweeted Blackburn.

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Chain-of-Custody Documents: View All the Ballot Transfer Forms from the November 2020 Election Provided by Fulton County to The Georgia Star News

On May 3, 2021, six months after the November 3, 2020 presidential election, Fulton County election officials provided The Georgia Star News with a thumb drive containing 30 files those officials said complied with an Open Records Request made by The Star News. The request made to Fulton County was one in a series of Open Records Requests made to all 159 counties in Georgia to produce all chain of custody documents, known as absentee ballot drop box transfer forms, from that election.

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FLASHBACK: Atlanta’s Fox 5 Reported on COVID-19 Outbreak in October at Fulton County Election Preparation Center Warehouse Where Absentee Ballots from Drop Boxes Were Delivered

A little more than two weeks prior to the 2020 election, Atlanta’s Fox5 TV reported on a COVID-19 outbreak at the Fulton County Election warehouse.

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To-Go Alcohol in Tennessee Remains, But with Added Tax

Jack Daniels Honey

Of the many alcohol-related bills that passed the Tennessee Legislature this year and were signed by Gov. Bill Lee, one maintains a popular pandemic rule but taxes consumers for it.

Lee signed an executive order last year while COVID-19 restrictions were in place that allowed restaurants to sell to-go alcohol with restrictions.

The enacted House Bill 241 allows those sales to continue until July 1, 2023, but it also adds a 15% tax on those alcohol purchases.

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Commentary: Make Communist China Pay for COVID-19

As the world slowly begins to emerge from the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic and American elites develop an interest in the formerly dismissed Wuhan lab leak theory, it is time to focus attention where it belongs: punishing a rogue Chinese Communist Party for what it has inflicted upon an unsuspecting world.

To many of us, it was obvious from the outset that COVID-19 was a “Chinese Chernobyl.” Regardless of whether the virus has as its provenance a zoonotic transmission at a wet market or an “escape” from the Wuhan Institute of Virology—to say nothing of the low, but still non-negligible, possibility that it was intentionally developed and weaponized as a bioweapon—the CCP’s gross negligence, recklessness and, indeed, malice all contributed to an initially localized virus metastasizing into a crippling global phenomenon.

The story is, by now, a familiar one: The CCP responded to the initial outbreak in Wuhan by arresting and muzzling scientists, suppressing journalistic investigation, and actively disseminating disinformation to the World Health Organization and other transnational institutions. As a study from Britain’s University of Southampton concluded well over a year ago, proper Chinese government intervention at the virus’ onset might have reduced its ultimate spread by as much as 95 percent.

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Commentary: Combating Global Food Insecurity 

As COVID-19, violent conflicts, and natural disasters persist around the world, an increasing number of people face an additional crisis: food insecurity.  Although food insecurity existed in many low- and middle-income countries prior to 2020, it is clear that the COVID-19 pandemic has escalated this global challenge.

Today, according to the United Nations World Food Program Live Hunger Map, an estimated 870 million people live on insufficient food consumption.  This figure has increased since 2019, when an estimated 821 million people did not get enough food to eat. 

Within the 79 countries in which the World Food Program operates, the number of people suffering from acute malnutrition or worse has doubled to 270 million people since 2019.

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Commentary: Minimum Wage Hikes Led to Lower Worker Compensation, New Research Shows

Opponents of minimum wage laws tend to focus their criticism on one particular adverse consequence: by artificially raising the price of labor, they reduce employment, particularly for the most vulnerable in society.

“Minimum wage laws tragically generate unemployment, especially so among the poorest and least skilled or educated workers,” economist Murray Rothbard wrote in 1978. “Because a minimum wage, of course, does not guarantee any worker’s employment; it only prohibits, by force of law, anyone from being hired at the wage which would pay his employer to hire him.

Though some economists, such as Paul Krugman, reject Rothbard’s claim, a recent study found the overwhelming body of academic research supports the idea that minimum wage laws increase unemployment.

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Trump Justice Department Had Previously Been Investigating House Democrats for Corruption: Report

Officials from President Donald Trump’s Department of Justice had reportedly been investigating House Democrats for possibly corruption, even going so far as to subpoena Apple for data from several members’ iPhones and other devices, as reported by ABC News.

The claim comes from an aide with the House Intelligence Committee, who anonymously told ABC that members of the committee had been notified of the subpoena by Apple last month. The request for metadata from their electronic devices had first been made back in February of 2018. Apple informed the members that, as of May of this year, the matter has been settled since President Trump is no longer in office.

Congressman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), the chairman of the committee, demanded on Thursday that an inspector general investigation be carried out to look into the claims. Schiff falsely claimed that “President Trump repeatedly and flagrantly demanded that the Department of Justice carry out his political will, and tried to use the Department as a cudgel against his political opponents and members of the media.” There is no evidence to support any of Schiff’s claims.

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Activists Look to the Future of Oil Pipelines Following Keystone XL Cancellation

Anti Keystone XL pipeline citizens

After the cancellation of the Keystone XL Pipeline struck a blow to the oil industry, energy jobs activists are pushing back by warning of increased costs and touting the benefits of transporting oil via pipeline.

TC Energy Corporation announced on Wednesday that it was cancelling the Keystone XL Pipeline less than five months after President Joe Biden rescinded a vital permit for the pipeline. The cancellation ends an over 12-year battle by activists from both sides over the oil pipeline. The pipeline would have started in the Canadian province of Alberta ultimately ending in Nebraska.

In a statement François Poirier, President and CEO of TC Energy Corporation, expressed disappointment.

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Six Times in a Row, Becerra Refuses to Admit Partial Birth Abortion Is Illegal

Baby boy sleeping

Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra repeatedly refused Thursday to acknowledge that partial birth abortion is illegal in the U.S.

Becerra falsely denied last month that there is an existing law banning partial birth abortion, apparently forgetting the law that he himself voted against. His denial sparked a backlash among conservatives and pro-life advocates and prompted multiple senators to question him about the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act in hearings this week.

During Thursday’s hearing, Republican Montana Sen. Steve Daines asked Becerra whether partial birth abortion is illegal several times. Becerra repeatedly refused to address the question or acknowledge that partial birth abortion is illegal and emphasized that Roe v. Wade is the law of the land.

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$6 Trillion Biden Budget Formally Refers to Mothers as ‘Birthing People’

Woman making a heart over her pregnant belly

Joe Biden’s proposed budget for the year 2022 was found to contain anti-scientific language that eliminates the concept of gender from the act of childbirth, according to the Washington Free Beacon.

The budget plan, which costs a record-breaking total of $6 trillion, dedicates over $200 million in healthcare spending for the purpose of reducing the “high rate of maternal mortality and race-based disparities in outcomes among birthing people,” despite providing no evidence to back up this assertion. The phrase “birthing people” replaces the more widely-known and correct term, which is “mother.”

The push to replace mother with “birthing people” is part of a broader effort to eliminate so-called “gendered language,” with the Left claiming that gender is merely a “social construct” and that there are more than two genders, even though both claims are false. This was made evident on Mother’s Day a month ago, where several Democrats and far-left organizations – including Congresswoman Cori Bush (D-Mo.) and the pro-abortion group NARAL – included the terminology “birthing people” in their respective Mother’s Day statements.

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Unvaccinated Students at New Hampshire High School Marked and Tracked at Prom

Boy putting on a corsage on woman's wrist

Unvaccinated students who attended Exeter High School’s prom on Saturday were marked with numbers and contact traced throughout the course of the night, a school spokesperson told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Students attending the event “who were unable to provide a vaccination card because they did not have or share a card or had not completed the full vaccination process had a number written on their hand,” an Exeter High School spokesperson told the DCNF. The school divided the dance floor into three sections and asked dancing students to stop periodically in between songs in order for them to “raise their hands to determine who they were around,” the spokesperson said.

The students were made aware of the contact tracing procedures beforehand, and were also told to provide vaccination information ahead of the event, the spokesperson said. Any personal information obtained for the event, including vaccination status, was destroyed, according to the spokesperson.

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Commentary: China’s Three-Child Policy Shows Xi Jinping Is Terrified

Xi Jinping

The Chinese government has carried out a massive population control campaign since the 1970s with the hope that it would generate economic prosperity. The government unremorsefully forced women to receive abortions, pressured or forced millions of women to be sterilized, and punished families with multiple children with debilitating fines. More than 300 million children were aborted under China’s one-child policy. 

Last week, the Chinese government ended the two-child policy, which had been in effect since 2016, and instead enacted a three-child policy. The new policy is essentially an admission that the Chinese Communist Party’s heinous population control policies will not give it the riches it had hoped for. Instead, the population control program will deliver a demographic disaster, which will ravage the country’s economy for generations. 

Many economists recognize that population control never improved China’s economy — that was the result of increased freedom in the marketplace and foreign investment. And the Malthusian crisis the government was so desperately trying to avoid with population control was an entirely false specter. 

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Georgia Economy Strong as Net Tax Collections Up Nearly 70 Percent Versus This Time Last Year

The State of Georgia’s May net tax collections approached $2.66 billion for an increase of roughly $1.08 billion, or 68.1 percent, compared to May 2020. Net tax collections in May of last year totaled $1.58 billion, according to a press release that Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp released this week.

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Florida Sales-Tax Collections Exceeds Expectations in April 2021

Florida’s Historic Capitol and Florida State Capitol

The month of April became the ninth consecutive month that the state of Florida exceeded its expected revenue calculations, with 56% of the total revenue gain coming from sales-tax collections.

Sales-tax revenue accounted for $2.7993 billion, which is 19% or  $447.6 million more than the estimated projection of approximately $2.3516 billion that was established by the Florida Office of Economic and Demographic Research (EDR) at the General Revenue Estimating Conference.

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Florida Rep. Crist Proposes Gun Control Measures on Campaign Trial

The former Republican governor of Florida turned Democrat congressman, who is once again mounting a gubernatorial bid, made his case for gun control during a Friday campaign appearance. 

“One of the most common-sense things that we can do is ban assault weapons,” Rep. Charlie Crist (D-FL-13) said in Miami Beach. “It is hard for me to imagine why we already don’t do that.” 

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State Board of Elections Must Certify Unlock Michigan Petition, Michigan Supreme Court Rules

Unlock Michigan sign

The Michigan Supreme Court ruled Friday the Board of State Canvassers must certify the Unlock Michigan petition to remove Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s 1945 emergency powers. 

In April, the Board of State Canvassers deadlocked 2-2 three times on votes whether to certify or investigate further Unlock Michigan.

“In the present case, the Board approved the form and content of the petition in July 2020,” the state’s top court wrote. “The Bureau of Elections analyzed the signatures using a random sampling method and estimated that Unlock Michigan submitted at least 460,000 valid signatures when they only needed about 340,000. The Board rejected, by deadlocked vote, a motion to investigate the collection of signatures. The Board thus has a clear legal duty to certify the petition.”

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Ohio Lawmaker and Civic Group Accuse Rep Gayle Manning of Blocking ‘Parents Right to Know Act’

  COLUMBUS, Ohio – A bill aimed at forcing schools to disclose sexually graphic curricula to parents is being blocked by Representative Gayle Manning (R-North Ridgeville) in her capacity as Primary and Secondary Education Committee Chair, according to the sponsor of the legislation and Ohio Value Voters (OVV), a civic…

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Report: Vax-A-Million Lottery Not Spurring Vaccinations Growth

Millions of dollars, college scholarships and other cash and prize incentives may not be enough to encourage more people around the country to get the COVID-19 vaccination, at least if numbers in Ohio are any indication.

The Associated Press reported the number of new Ohioans receiving at least the first dose of a vaccine fell by nearly half after the state announced its first $1 million and college scholarship winners. After Gov. Mike DeWine’s announcement of the vaccine lottery in early May, the report said vaccination numbers increased by 43% over the previous week.

The report said the number of people receiving the vaccine from May 27 through June 2 dropped about 43%. March and April were the state’s highest months for the number of vaccines, according to The AP.

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DeSantis Reports $7.5 Million in May Contributions, Continues to Significantly Outpace Rivals

Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried raised only approximately $215,000 in May, according to newly filed campaign finance reports. Fried’s political action committee, Florida Consumers First, saw exactly $214,832 come in from primarily small-donor contributions. However, the May numbers do not reflect the campaign fundraising effort after she formally announced her candidacy on June 1.

Fried’s foremost competitors, Democratic U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist (D-FL-13) and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R), raised $1.2 million and $7.5 million, respectively. DeSantis has been on a fundraising crusade in recent months, raking in nearly $14 million back in April and capitalizing on his administration’s move to ban Critical Race Theory, banning transgender females from competing in female sports, and to push back against “cultural Marxism” in May.

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Emergency SNAP Benefits Extended into June for Virginians

Virginians who receive food stamps will continue to be eligible for higher pandemic-era benefits through June, the Virginia Department of Social Services announced.

Families receiving food stamps through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program will see additional benefits automatically loaded onto their EBT cards. The funds will be added n June 16.

A household of one will be eligible for up to $234 monthly while the emergency funding continues. A family of two could receive up to $430, a family of three up to $616 and a family of four up to $782. The funding gradually increases for every additional member of a family.

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Northam Announcements: Record May Revenue Increase, New Secretary of Finance, and Return to Earn Grant Program

Virginia saw a 66.2 percent General Fund revenue increase in May according to a Friday announcement from Governor Ralph Northam. He also announced the appointment of Joe Flores as the new Secretary of Finance, and a Return to Earn Grant program to help provide bonuses to new hires at small businesses.

“Virginia’s economy is roaring back to life thanks to hard work following the science and one of the strongest pandemic responses in the country,” Northam said in a press release.

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Chauvin Trial Overtime Cost Nearly $3 million

Derek Chauvin

Ramped-up security during the three weeks of Derek Chauvin’s trial cost taxpayers nearly $3 million, the Minneapolis Police Department said Thursday.

Citing unexpected costs, Police Chief Medaria Arradondo asked the Minneapolis City Council for an additional $5 million.

The MPD has 632 sworn officers, down from 845 one year ago — a 25% drop — to protect the 425,000-person city that’s fighting spiking violent crime.

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Metro Atlanta Leaders to Use Federal Money to Address Crime

Keisha Lance Bottoms

Leaders in the metro Atlanta area said they plan to use American Rescue Plan funding to address public safety issues.

Officials in Fulton and DeKalb counties and the city of Atlanta have announced plans to use a portion of the federal aid to increase public safety or address criminal justice backlogs.

According to several reports, Atlanta and adjacent cities have seen a spike in crime over the past year. State lawmakers have launched a study to look at ways to curb the issue. Gov. Brian Kemp directed $5 million last month from his emergency fund to address the crisis.

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U.S. Rep. Tim Burchett Introduces Bill to Protect American Intellectual Property from China

Congressman Tim Burchett (R-TN-02) and Congressman Richard Hudson (R-NC-08) introduced a bill that would help protect American intellectual property (IP) from China and other adversaries. 

The Trade-Related Intellectual Property Protection (TRIPP) Act would prohibit any president, unless given Congressional approval, from waiving intellectual property rights for certain medical innovations, such as the coronavirus vaccines.

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Commentary: Massive Government Spending Has Caused High Inflation Levels and a Weakening U.S. Dollar

$100 bills in rubber bands

Inflation is up 4.92 percent the past 12 months as of May, the most since July 2008’s 5.5 percent, according to data compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, amid a torrent of trillions of dollars of government spending, Federal Reserve money printing and a weakening dollar combined with the continued economic rebound led by reopening businesses from the 2020 Covid lockdowns.

The past three months alone, inflation has grown at an accelerated rate of 2 percent combined. If that trend were to hold up for the rest of the year, inflation would come closer to 8 percent.

In the month of May, price jumps in fuel oil at 2.1 percent and piped gas service at 1.7 percent offset a 0.7 percent drop in gasoline prices. In addition, new car prices grew 1.6 percent. Used cars and trucks grew at 7.3 percent again after a 10 percent jump in April. Apparel jumped 1.2 percent. And transportation services grew 1.5 percent after a 2.9 percent jump in April.

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Crom Carmichael Compares Mayor John Cooper and Former Governor Don Sundquist on Tax Reform Discussions

Friday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed the original all-star panelist Crom Carmichael in studio to discuss the false claims of impending doom made by Mayor John Cooper to dissuade people from voting on the tax referendum.

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