Durham Indicts Democrat Lawyer for Making False Statement When He Fed Russia Dirt to FBI

Special Counsel John Durham on Thursday secured an indictment against a prominent Democrat lawyer alleging he developed and fed information to the FBI during the 2016 campaign suggesting Donald Trump was colluding with Russia without disclosing he was being paid by Hillary Clinton’s campaign.

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Tennessee Attorney General Slatery Joins Effort to Oppose Potential Federal Takeover of Elections

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery joined 22 attorney generals from other states and issued a letter to leaders in Congress, calling on Congress to end its push to pass legislation giving more election power to the federal government.

Specifically, the leaders expressed concerns over H.R. 4, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, which would amend the Voting Rights Act (VRA).

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Commentary: The ‘Foul Spirit’ of George W. Bush and America’s Ruling Class

As with so many other aspects of our time, we seem destined to suffer the most trite and underwhelming imitations of things that once were great or at least impressive. Exhibit A would be the great war advocate, George W. Bush. Can there be a more perfect synthesis of the last 20 years of disappointing American politics than this man? He exemplifies everything—unaware, unashamed, unapologetic—that the American ruling class has become. NeverTrumpers and neocons yearn for a return to the days of measured, steady Bush leadership. We are told constantly now that he is kind, polite, well-bred: a politician from a more dignified tradition of public servants than those of late. But of course, in reality he is none of these things.

The everlasting incompetence and mesmerizing self-delusion on display at his recent 9/11 remarks make that clear.

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Congressman Tim Burchett Shakes His Head at AOC Met Gala Contribution and Blinken Testimony

Tim Burchett

Wednesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Knox County Congressman Tim Burchett to the newsmakers line to talk AOC’s Met Gala donation and his showdown with Blinken during Monday’s testimony.

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Tennessee State Senator Dawn White Seeks Special Session on President Biden’s Vaccine Mandate

On Monday, Tennessee State Senator Dawn White (R-Murfreesboro) sent a letter to Lieutenant Governor and Speaker of the Senate Randy McNally asking for a special session in response to President Joe Biden’s executive order on vaccine mandates.

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U.S. Senator Bill Hagerty Weighs in on Blinken’s Lack of Leadership, Freedom to Vote Act, and Reconciliation

Wednesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed US Senator Bill Hagerty to the newsmaker line to discuss Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s testimony, the Freedom to Vote Act, and how the Senate parliamentarian will vote on $3.5 trillion spending bill.

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Princeton Instructs Freshmen That Professor Who Criticized Black Student Group Is Part of ‘Systemic Racism’

Princeton University is allegedly teaching freshmen that a current faculty member is racist for criticizing a defunct black student organization. What’s not clear is how many freshmen are paying attention to the lesson.

The Ivy League school included classics professor Joshua Katz in a “virtual gallery” about its history of systemic racism that was featured in a 50-minute orientation video for the class of 2025.

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The Department of Justice Bans No-Knock Entries, Chokeholds, and Other Practices

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has announced a comprehensive ban on numerous practices in law enforcement, aimed at curbing tactics that some claim can lead to instances of so-called “police brutality,” according to Politico.

In a statement issued by Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco, the department said it would be banning the use of chokeholds and carotid restraints by law enforcement officers, except in circumstances where “the officer has a reasonable belief that the subject of such force poses an imminent danger of death or serious physical injury to the officer or to another person.” The department is also banning no-knock warrants, except in situations where an officer believes that announcing their identity could lead to physical harm.

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Newsom Sails Past Republican Recall, Will Remain California’s Governor

Gov. Gavin Newsom won California’s recall election Tuesday, capitalizing on late momentum and sailing past the field of Republicans looking to oust him in what was considered a neck-and-neck race just weeks ago.

Newsom, first elected in 2018, survived the GOP recall effort with just over two-thirds of voters opting to keep him in office, according to initial results when the Associated Press called the race. Of the approximately 33% voters who chose to recall him, nearly 43% selected conservative radio host Larry Elder as their preferred candidate when the race was declared.

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Report: 74 Percent of Professors Targeted for Unpopular Speech or Research End Up Punished by Administrators

Attempts to sanction scholars for their speech, research or teaching practices has skyrocketed since 2015, with about three in four campaigns leading to some form of professional sanction – including termination – according to a new report by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education.

Such attacks are “on the rise and are increasingly coming from within academia itself—from other scholars and especially from undergraduate students,” FIRE research fellows Komi German and Sean Stevens state in their report.

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Larry Elder Tells Supporters to ‘Stay Tuned’ During Concession Speech

Republican candidate Larry Elder conceded to Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom of California late Tuesday while telling his supporters to “stay tuned.”

Elder said “we may have lost the battle, but we are going to win the war,” according to the Associated Press. Newsom sailed to victory, securing nearly 64% of the vote through Wednesday morning.

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The Department of Justice Asks Federal Judge to Block Texas Abortion Law

The Department of Justice asked a federal judge late Tuesday night to block Texas’ Heartbeat Act, which prohibits abortions after the baby’s heartbeat can be detected.

The DOJ called for a temporary restraining order or injunction against the new law, arguing that the Heartbeat Act intends “to prevent women from exercising their constitutional rights.”

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Tennessee Governor Lee Appoints Blake Neill to Serve as 25th Judicial District Circuit Court Judge

On Friday, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee appointed A. Blake Neill to serve as circuit court judge for the 25th Judicial District to fill the Honorable Joe H. Walker III’s vacancy, effective immediately, according to a news release from Lee’s office.

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Report: E-Commerce Prices Have Skyrocketed Because of Inflation

Online shopping prices have rapidly increased since the start of the pandemic as consumers rely more on e-commerce, according to an industry report.

While e-commerce prices trended downward between 2015-2019 as online shopping grew in popularity, the sector has seen unprecedented increases over the last year, the report published by Adobe Digital Insights on Wednesday found. At the same time, consumers are spending more purchasing goods and food online than ever before.

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CDC Warns Afghan Refugees Pose Threat of ‘Larger Imminent Outbreaks’ of Measles in U.S.

The head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has sent a private warning to the chief of Afghan evacuation operations that measles is spreading among refugees and poses a “major public health threat” that includes the potential for “larger imminent outbreaks” in U.S. communities already reeling from the coronavirus.

CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky’s memo Tuesday night urged Operations Allies Welcome senior official Robert Fenton to take “urgent public health action” that includes mass vaccinations of refugees, revealing there are now six confirmed cases of measles in Afghan refugees, 17 suspect cases and hundreds of exposures in U.S. hospitals.

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Commentary: Conservatives Should Not Listen to the Eco-Right

If there’s one thing the Left knows cold, it’s deception. From Vladimir Lenin to Saul Alinsky, leftists are unparalleled masters of the art of victory through hoodwinking: Defeating opponents by fooling them into false agreement.

Owning the battlefield in this war starts with controlling the language. We’ve seen this play out in the debate over abortion access, with pro-choice activists redefining “pro-life” to mean anything but the conviction that life begins at conception—and swindling unwitting Christians into their ranks.

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At Pennsylvania Senate Meeting on Elections, Subpoenas Issued, Dem Calls GOPers McCarthyites, Another Has Remarks Curtailed for Breaking Senate Rules

At Wednesday’s meeting concerning the Pennsylvania’s Senate Intergovernmental Operations Committee’s election investigation, which saw Republicans winning a vote to subpoena voter records, Democrats fumed.

One angrily compared GOP colleagues to Joe McCarthy, the notoriously zealous anti-communist U.S. senator from Wisconsin who served from 1947 to 1957.

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Wisconsin Representative Fitzgerald Signs Letter Opposing IRS Oversight of Withdrawals and Deposits over $600

Wisconsin Representative Scott Fitzgerald (R-05-WI) signed a letter opposing suggested Internal Revenue Service (IRS) oversight of withdrawals and deposits of over $600. The letter was written by Minnesota Representative Tom Emmer (R-06-MN).

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Hudson School District in Wisconsin Incentivizing Teachers to Get COVID Vaccine

According to an internal email, the Hudson school district is incentivizing teachers to get vaccinated. The email, shared by local medical freedom activist Jessica Klatt, outlines how those who get vaccinated will automatically receive five sick days to use if they contract a breakthrough infection or need to quarantine.

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Minneapolis and St. Paul Mayors Refused to Comment on Mayors Conference Support of Critical Race Theory

The Minneapolis and St. Paul mayors refused to comment on the decisions made by the U.S. Conference of Mayors embracing the teaching of Critical Race Theory (CRT) in K-12 schools. At the conference, the mayors adopted Resolution Number 68, called “In Support of Critical Race Theory in Public K-12 Education.”

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Phoenix Small Business Owners Say Light Rail Expansion Is Trying to Deliberately Shut Them Down

The construction of light rail began in Phoenix in 2005, and was fought by property owners located in the way who thought it was too late to set up mass transit in such a densely populated city. Not very many miles have been built since then, only 28, in one straight shot in an L-shape throughout the Valley, with businesses and residences still fighting weak expansion efforts. The South Phoenix expansion won’t be completed until 2024.

Celia Contreras, who owns Tony’s Window Tinting in South Phoenix, says the construction effort in South Phoenix is harassing her business in order to shut it down, tired of her complaints. She says large trucks deliberately block the entrance to her business so customers can’t stop by, and have flooded her building twice. She posted photos of drains stating that the construction company was blocking it with cement, unwise during the monsoon season. Officials refuse to help her, and she caught workers on video making fun of her for having to temporarily close her businesses due to the problems.

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Arizona Supreme Court Allows Release of State Senate’s Records of Contractors Conducting Election Audit

The Arizona Supreme Court has rejected an effort by the state’s GOP-led Senate to keep confidential records of its review of the 2020 election in Maricopa County now in possession of the contractors conducting the recount.

The court on Tuesday rejected the appeal filed after two lower courts ruled the documents are public records that must be released, according to the Associated Press.

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Democrats Expel Embattled Minnesota State Rep over Domestic Abuse, Other Allegations

A controversial State Representative, known for his multiple run-ins with law enforcement, domestic abuse allegations, and a recent residency controversy has been expelled from the Minnesota House Democratic-Farmer-Labor (DFL) caucus.

Rep. John Thompson (DFL-MN-67A) was expelled by his own party Wednesday, following a string of outlandish behavior and resurfaced allegations of domestic abuse, according to multiple reports. 

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Campaign Finance Complaints Filed After Gretchen Whitmer Takes Several $100,000+ Donations

The Michigan Freedom Fund filed a campaign finance complaint against 10 donors to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s (D) reelection campaign, alleging they violated state law when they broke donation limits.

Dubbing it Whitmer’s “$100,000 Club,” Michigan Freedom Fund said in a filing with Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson (D) the group “comprised of donors who each illegally gave over $100,000 to Whitmer’s campaign in violation of the $7,150 contribution limit in state law.”

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Virginia Redistricting Commission Spends a Week Providing Clarification to Map Drawers

After a strategy shift, the Virginia Redistricting Commission spent its two meetings this week discussing guidance from legal teams about how to ensure legal compliance with the Voting Rights Act (VRA), and how to consider political subdivisions, communities of interest, and partisan equity. Republican and Democratic legal teams shared different analyses of how to ensure compliance with section two of the VRA, which requires that districts not dilute the voting power of protected minorities. Democratic legal counsel argued that map drawers must create majority-minority districts where possible including through coalitions of minority groups. Republican counsel said that while creating those districts was permissible and even likely to happen, explicitly instructing the mapdrawers to consider race fell outside the legal criteria under which race can be considered, violating the Equal Protection Clause.

The commission debated the issue for hours across two meetings on Monday and Wednesday and defeated three proposals to say the mapdrawers “shall,” “may,” or “shall provide where practicable,” the majority-minority districts.

Senator Ryan McDougle (R-Hanover) summarized the debate over the “shall” language Monday: “This motion specifically means that we’re going to get sued one way or the other — one counsel is saying we specifically can’t do this, one counsel is saying we specifically have to do this.”

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U.S. Senate Candidate Vance Signs onto Ohio’s Big Tech Lawsuit

An Ohio U.S. Senate candidate and attorney has signed onto a lawsuit in support of the state’s bid to regulate Google like a public utility. 

JD Vance is part of the Claremont Institute, which filed an amicus brief supporting Attorney General Dave Yost’s June lawsuit against the Silicon Valley giant. 

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The Star News Network’s Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe Talks $3.5 Trillion Spending Spree, Treasonous Milley, and Trump 2024

Wednesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe to the newsmakers line to discuss the reckless spending in Washington, Milley, and Pelosi, and advice to Trump for 2024.

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Tennessee U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen Wants the Federal Government to Fix Childhood Obesity

U.S. Representative Steve Cohen (D-TN-09) on Tuesday paired up with U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) to file companion bills that would, if enacted into law, create a government program to combat childhood obesity. “The Reducing Obesity in Youth Act would create a grant program to assist in the development of healthier early care and education environments to improve healthy eating and physical activity among children from birth through 5 years of age,” according to a press release that members of Cohen’s staff published on the congressman’s website this week.

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Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers Wants to Join Redistricting Suit, Bypass Lawmakers

Wisconsin’s governor is sending a clear signal that he can’t or doesn’t want to work with lawmakers in drawing the state’s new political map.

Gov. Tony Evers and Attorney General Josh Kaul on Monday asked a federal judge to allow them to join a lawsuit that would skip the constitutional process for drawing Wisconsin’s new map, and have the court draw it instead.

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U.S. Senator Marco Rubio Calls for the Termination of General Mark Milley

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) sent a letter to President Biden Tuesday calling for the termination of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, who Rubio claims “contemplated” leaking classified information to China, and undermined former President Trump.

Rubio’s allegations are in response to the reports made by journalists Bob Woodward and Robert Costa in their upcoming book titled “Peril” that details the relationship between Milley and General Li Zuocheng of the People’s Liberation Army of China.

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Tennessee Sen. Blackburn Spearheading Bipartisan Probe with Connecticut Sen. Blumenthal of Facebook’s Impact on Youngsters

Tennessee Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R) and her Connecticut colleague Richard Blumenthal (D) announced this week they’re launching an inquiry into revelations, reported that morning in The Wall Street Journal, about Facebook’s knowledge of harms its products may pose to their young users.

Blumenthal chairs the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Data Security, through which the investigation of the social network will proceed. Blackburn serves as the subcommittee’s ranking member.

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Ohio GOP Gubernatorial Candidate Jim Renacci Blasts Gov. DeWine for Supporting Mask Mandates

Ohio GOP gubernatorial candidate Jim Renacci on Wednesday blasted Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s support for mask mandates in schools

The statement from Renacci follows Governor Mike DeWine announcing on Tuesday that his administration will make a “direct appeal” to local school districts, encouraging them to implement mask mandates.

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Grand Rapids Weighs Declaring Racism a Public Health Crisis

Grand Rapids is considering naming racism a public health crisis to “center and prioritize anti-racism.”

City staff spent more than 200 hours prepping three draft resolutions presented Tuesday: one to declare a climate crisis, the second to support the decriminalization of entheogenic substances, such as magic mushrooms, and the third to name racism a public health emergency.Grand Rapids is considering naming racism a public health crisis to “center and prioritize anti-racism.”

City staff spent more than 200 hours prepping three draft resolutions presented Tuesday: one to declare a climate crisis, the second to support the decriminalization of entheogenic substances, such as magic mushrooms, and the third to name racism a public health emergency.

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Governor DeSantis Announces Major Transportation Projects for Tampa’s Interstate System

Governor DeSantis along with Florida Senate President Wilton Simpson, House Speaker Chris Sprowls, and Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Secretary Kevin Thibuilt, joined together Monday to announce the development of three transportation projects aimed to improve “efficient, safe, and reliable” travel in Tampa’s interstate system.

According to a press release from Governor DeSantis’ office, the three projects will be enhancements to the Howard Frankland Bridge, the advancement of the Westshore Interchange, and the advancement of the I-275, I-4 Interchange.

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Sen. Paul: Gen. Milley’s Calls to China Could Have Sparked ‘Accidental Nuclear War,’ Wants Polygraph

Republican Sen. Rand Paul said Wednesday that Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley “could have started an accidental nuclear war” if he indeed made unauthorized phone calls to China in the final weeks of the Trump presidency to assure Beijing that the U.S. would not attack the country.

The assertion that Milley made two such calls is reportedly included in an upcoming book titled “Peril” by Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Robert Costa.

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Ohio Redistricting Commission Plans to Approve New Legislative Maps Wednesday

The Ohio Redistricting Commission expects to approve new legislative maps Wednesday, the constitutional deadline, after hearing testimony Tuesday, most of which was more critical of the proposed maps than supportive.

The commission heard from 90 witnesses Tuesday, the second public hearing for maps introduced Sept. 9. Many witnesses during the hearing, which began at 10 a.m. and was still going after 3 p.m., complained of divided neighborhoods, unfair district lines, confusing districts and an unopen process.

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James Robert Webb Releases ‘Stealing Home’

Dr. James Robert Webb is a successful radiologist who just happens to be an accomplished country music singer/songwriter. When I interviewed him in April of 2020, he was getting ready to release a self-titled album as the nation was going into lockdown.

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Committee for a Better Ohio Nonprofit Fires Back at GOP ‘Bully’ Bob Paduchik

The conservative Committee for a Better Ohio grassroots organization pushed backon Ohio GOP Party Chair Bob Paduchik’s recent calling the nonprofit public policy organization a “dark money” group set on undermining the party.

The characterization came during an occasionally raucous Ohio Republican Party State Central Committee meeting   where members seeking to reform to the management and policies were unable to get financial and management issues discussed.

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U.S. Officials Confirm Six Measles Cases Among Afghan Refugees in Virginia, Wisconsin

Six Afghan refugees in Virginia and Wisconsin have tested positive for the measles, the Associated Press reported on Tuesday.

The cases were reported among Afghan refugees who were evacuated to the U.S. after the Taliban took over Kabul, according to the AP. The cases were reported four days after flights bringing Afghans to the U.S. were suspended because some of the refugees had measles, the AP reported.

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Gov. DeSantis to Levy Fines on Florida Cities That Implement Vaccine Mandates

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced this week the state will be imposing $5,000 fines per violation toward cities and local municipalities that implement vaccine mandates for their employers.

“People that have put in 10, 15, 20 years, and now they’re just going to get cast aside by some onerous mandate? That is wrong, and so we let it be known today, we’re going to be enforcing Florida law against that,” DeSantis said.

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Crime-Plagued Atlanta Must Enforce Laws and Incarcerate Those Who Commit Certain Crimes, Georgia Legislator Says

Certain crimes in Atlanta demand prosecution. This was the message that Georgia State Representative Alan Powell (R-Hartwell) conveyed Wednesday at a House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee. Committee members met to discuss Atlanta’s soaring crime rate.

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Recall of Loudoun School Board Member Beth Barts Has Hearing Set for October

Loudoun County Circuit Court Judge Jeanette Irby declined Wednesday to recuse herself from the recall case of School Board Member Beth Barts. Barts’ attorney Charles King had motioned for local judges to recuse themselves, arguing that an outside judge is necessary to consider testimony from local officials. On Monday, Judge Stephen Sincavage said he would recuse himself, saying he has children in the school district, according to Loudoun Now.

“I am not recusing myself from this matter,” Irby said, according to The Loudoun Times-Mirror.

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Minnesota Court Asks State of Minnesota to Suspend State Rep. Thompson License for Failing to Pay Fine

The Ramsey County attorney is asking the state of Minnesota to suspend Representative John Thompson’s (D-Forest Lake) drivers license after failing to pay a fine and a late fee. Thompson was pulled over on July 4 and given a traffic citation. During the stop it was also uncovered that his license was suspended. According to the Star Tribune, “Thompson received a late payment advisory in August after he failed to pay a $286 fine for the citation and has since added $30 in late fees as of Monday.”

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Loudoun County School Board Passes Policy That Protects First Amendment Rights in Response to Teachers’ Lawsuit

The Loudoun County school board voted on a revised professional conduct policy to specifically mention “Protected Speech” and the First Amendment rights of employees.

The new policy is a response to Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) teacher Tanner Cross who went viral for his comments at a school board meeting in May, where he spoke out against the district’s gender policy and was put on administrative leave shortly afterward. On Aug. 30 the Virginia Supreme Court ruled to reinstate him, calling his removal “likely unconstitutional.”

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Tennessee State Senator Kerry Roberts Calls for a Special Session on COVID-19 Mandates

Tennessee State Senator Kerry Roberts (R-Springfield) sent a letter to Senate Speaker Randy McNally (R-Oak Ridge) to urge him to support a special legislative session.

In the session, Roberts and other state lawmakers seek to limit the ability of school systems and venues from issuing broad mandates relating to COVID-19.

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