Metro Nashville At-Large Council Member Steve Glover Resigns from Position

Metro Nashville At-Large Council Member Steve Glover on Tuesday resigned from his position, citing ongoing health concerns as the reason behind his departure.

Glover, one of the more conservative voices on the panel, previously served on the Metro Nashville School Board before being elected to his position on the Metro Nashville Council.

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Exclusive: Grover Norquist Previews Biden’s SOTU for The Star News Network

Washington, D.C.– The Americans for Tax Reform president told The Star News Network that President Joseph R. Biden Jr. has an uphill battle when he gives his State of the Union Address to a joint session of Congress here.

“Because his polling numbers are down, because people blame him for inflation and blame him for energy costs, he needs to redirect the entire discussion between now and the election,” said Grover Norquist, the Massachusetts resident, who founded ATR in 1985 at the personal request of President Ronald W. Reagan, so that the conservation movement would have an organization on-call to fight against tax increases and for tax cuts.

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State Rep. Tim Rudd: Ortagus, Starbuck, Winstead, and Baxter Lee Ineligible for TN-5 Primary under TN GOP Bylaws, ‘Based on What Members of the Party Are Telling Me’

Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed State Representative Tim Rudd to the newsmaker line to discuss the constitutionality of SB2616, which would require three-year residency for GOP House and Senate candidates.

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Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs Says Cancel Culture Makes U.S. Look Weak to ‘Fascists’ like Putin

Glenn Jacobs speaking on a stage

Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs pushed back on accusations that he was “pro-Putin” after a portion of a series of Sunday tweets were amplified, leading some to believe that he supported the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“Unfortunately what has happened on the Left with the Russiagate investigation – which was a hoax – is that when Republicans say something that involves Putin they get tied to him by the Left,” Jacobs told The Tennessee Star. “Putin and brutal dictators like him look for weakness. In order to deal with people like him you need to project strength.”

“I do not support Putin,” the Knox County mayor said. “I’m for liberty and freedom. Putin is the antithesis of that.”

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GOP Candidate for Tennessee’s 5th Congressional District, Morgan Ortagus and Her Top Legislative Priorities

Tennessee Senate Chamber

Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed GOP primary candidate Morgan Ortagus in studio to talk about her top three legislative objectives if elected to Congress.

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Morgan Ortagus: I Am Not A Carpetbagger Because ‘I Am Not A Politician’

Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed Tennessee’s Fifth Congressional District GOP candidate Morgan Ortagus in studio to discuss her residency and voting record.

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Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners Say They Won’t Investigate Doctors Who Prescribe Ivermectin or Hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19

Members of the Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners said last week they won’t object if or when a primary care physician in the state prescribes ivermectin or hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19. Board members said this last Wednesday at a Senate Government Operations Committee meeting.

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Tim Doescher of The Heritage Foundation Explains the Release of the 2022 Index of Economic Freedom

Tim Doescher

Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed Director of Coalition Relations for The Heritage Center, Tim Doescher to the newsmakers line to discuss the recently released 2022 Index of Economic Freedom.

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Retired Murfreesboro Police Department Lieutenant Tom Sissom Launches Campaign for Rutherford County Sheriff

Tom Sissom

Tom Sissom, a retired Murfreesboro Police Department lieutenant, announced his candidacy for Rutherford County Sheriff on Monday. Sissom, who has served 34 years with the Murfreesboro Police Department, will be on the Republican ballot in this May’s primary, according to a press release by his campaign.

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Exclusive: Nigel Farage on Trump, DeSantis and Ukraine

Nigel Farage

ORLANDO, Florida –The father of Brexit and the U.K. Independence Party told The Star News Network  in an exclusive interview he believes his friend President Donald J. Trump is ready to make another run for the White House and that Florida Republican Governor Ronald D. DeSantis does not connect with…

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1619 Project’s Nikole Hannah-Jones: ‘Europe Not a Continent,’ Alarm over Ukraine a Racial ‘Dog Whistle’

Nikole Hannah-Jones, the primary author of the widely-discredited “1619 Project,” drew more criticism and ridicule from fellow Twitter users over the weekend when she declared Europe is “not a continent by definition,” and referred to the alarm over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and its people, who “appear white,” as a racial “dog whistle.”

“What if I told you Europe is not a continent by definition, but a geopolitical fiction to separate it from Asia and so the alarm about a European, or civilized, or First World nation being invaded is a dog whistle to tell us we should care because they are like us,” Hannah-Jones tweeted, as Fox News noted.

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Commentary: Justices Must Stop the Legal System from Becoming a Quick-Return Investment Scheme for Trial Lawyers

United States Supreme Court building

In the interest of a return to normalcy, we take this short break from COVID and Ukraine coverage to bring to your attention an actual conservative policy matter. The pesky trial lawyers and their junk science “experts” are at it again, providing certain justices of the Supreme Court an opportunity to show us they can still do the right thing. 

I’m not pointing fingers at say, Justices John Roberts and Brett Kavanaugh, but certain esteemed members of the court who had less than smooth sailing in their confirmation battles and for whom conservatives stormed the ramparts (figuratively speaking of course), have left us wondering if they were worth the battle scars. Here’s some low hanging fruit for them to pick off and make everyone breathe a little easier. All they have to do is vote to take a certain case.

The case involves a long-running dispute brought by the inventor of a special warming blanket called the Bair Hugger (now owned by 3M) which has proven to reduce post-operative infections and other complications and has been used in over 300 million surgeries worldwide to maintain patients’ body temperatures. The inventor, Dr. Scott Augustine made a fortune on this device but lost his rights to the product and its proceeds when he pled guilty to Medicare fraud in an unrelated matter. Dr. Augustine then invented a competing device and waged a campaign to discredit the Bair Hugger claiming that it caused infections. He then hired “experts” and funded studies to back up his claim. Except one of the actual authors of the studies called those studies “marketing rather than research.” As in not based on facts. The FDA admonished Dr. Augustine to stop the false campaign. And not a single physician who uses the Bair Hugger, or a single epidemiologist or any public health officials have supported Dr. Augustine’s contention. 

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Pennsylvania Lawmaker Urges New Jersey and New York to End Pipeline-Construction Bans

Pennsylvania State Representative Stan Saylor (R-Red Lion) announced Monday he’ll introduce a resolution exhorting New Jersey and New York’s respective governors to allow construction of natural-gas conduits.

In 2014, Democratic New York Governor Kathy Hochul’s predecessor Andrew Cuomo (D) banned hydraulic fracturing (or “fracking”) for natural-gas extraction and thenceforth barred the creation of new natural-gas pipelines. Last month, Hochul endorsed a statewide prohibition of gas power for new buildings, the first such state-level interdiction in the U.S. 

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General Motors, MEDC Aim to Fool Michigan Taxpayers with Bait and Switch: Analyst

General Motors (GM) garnered national headlines when it promised to invest $6.5 billion in Michigan, but the people negotiating the deal’s claw back provisions might only require GM meet half of that investment and 80% of the original job creation promise, despite taxpayers still footing an $824 million subsidy.

When in front of the press, GM and Michigan promised the factory would support 4,000 jobs and retain another 1,000 – a cost of about $206,000 per job created, and if it failed, Michigan could claw back a sizeable portion of that money.

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Parent References ‘GenderBread Person’ in Public Testimony on Parental Rights in Education Bill

Students in shop class at school with safety goggles on

The Parental Rights in Education bill his headed to the Senate floor after a debate that referenced the “GenderBread Person”.

The debate featured elected officials questioning the need for a provision which regulated discussions in the classroom. The bill prohibits “instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity in kindergarten through grade 3 or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students.”

Senator Lauren Book stated the bill was a “solution in search of problem.”

However, during the public testimony part of the meeting, a parent spoke to the committee and provided a real-world example of why she believes this provision of the bill is needed.

January Littlejohn, who is in a legal battle over the guidance provided in a LGBTQ guide used by the Leon County School district, referenced the LGBTQ guide currently providing direction to teachers and officials in Palm Beach County schools.

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MN-2 Incumbent Democrat U.S. Representative Angela Craig Has Nearly $3 Million in the Bank

U.S. Rep. Angela Craig

With nearly $3 million in the bank, incumbent Democrat U.S. Representative Angela Craig is sitting on a major financial advantage in her race for reelection to Minnesota’s Second Congressional district.

Some of that money is leftover from her previous race. FEC records show that for the 2022 election cycle Craig has raised $2,635,506.03 and has a war chest of $2,921,566.22.

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House of Delegates Subcommittee Recommends Postponing Marijuana Sales Legalization

A House of Delegates General Laws subcommittee voted five to three on Monday to recommend continue a key marijuana sales legalization bill until the 2023 session, effectively dooming the bill for now. Senate Bill 391 would create the regulatory structure for a legal marijuana industry in Virginia, including cultivation, manufacture, and sale. If the General Laws Committee follows the recommendation from the subcommittee, Virginia’s legal-to-own but not legal-to-buy recreational cannabis structure will remain in place for now.

Bill sponsor Senator Adam Ebbin (D-Alexandria) told the delegates, “The action of this subcommittee, as we discussed, will establish a Virginia cannabis brand. The question is whether the brand will be a regulated, confined marketplace for adults, or for an import crime subsidization program proliferating in school yards and gas stations.”

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Governor Tony Evers Provided Grants to Planned Parenthood with COVID Relief Funds, Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty Questions Legal Authority

Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers provided millions of dollars to Planned Parenthood through grants funded by federal coronavirus relief money, according to a letter from the Wisconsin Institute of Law and Liberty (WILL).

However, the group contends that Evers’ legal standing to fund the abortion provider is questionable at best.

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Georgia Mother Arrested Twice at Gwinnett County School Board Meetings Speaks Out

A mother who has been arrested twice at Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) School Board meetings spoke to The Georgia Star News Monday. 

“I am unhappy that our school board keeps violating constitutional rights of its constituents and that parent rights are being usurped each and every day by a power- and control-hungry Board of Education,” Karen Pirkle said. “I am devastated that my child was involved and they violently arrested me in front of her. I will continue to fight for my child no matter what. As a result of the board actions, my child will not longer attend GCPS schools, as they have now banned me from all school property which limits this parent’s right to drop off and pick up my child. I will continue to fight for my child and her rights.”

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Ohio Department of Health Still Won’t Provide Pandemic Update Despite CDC’s New Mask Guidance

Three people wearing masks, one focused on center

After the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Friday recommended that 70 percent of the U.S. population can stop wearing masks to slow the spread of COVID-19, the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) is still unwilling to update Ohioans on the status of the pandemic. 

When contacted by The Ohio Star to ask for the department’s professional opinion on whether Ohioans will soon be able to return to pre-pandemic life, ODH spokesman Ken Gordon declined to comment. The Star also noted that even Congress – which has had a mask mandate in place for two full years and threatened to fine members who refused to wear masks – finally made masks optional ahead of President Joe Biden’s Monday night State of the Union address. 

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Arizona Congressman Tom O’Halleran Received Donation from PAC That Demands Candidates Support Defunding the Police

Congressman Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ-01) accepted thousands in campaign donations from a super PAC that encourages candidates to support measures to “reduce the annual budget for law enforcement and defense spending.”

The Courage to Change PAC, connected to Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, donated the money to O’Halleran’s campaign in early 2021, according to disclosures filed with the Federal Election Commission.

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Assisted Suicide Legislation Before Connecticut State Lawmakers

A bill to allow assisted suicide via a lethal dose of drugs after approval from two doctors is before Connecticut state lawmakers again, despite its failure in the legislature for years.

Senate Bill 88 would require candidates for assisted suicide to be at least 18 years old and diagnosed with a terminal illness, with a prediction of less than six months to live.

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Commentary: The Suicide of a January 6 Defendant; ‘They Broke Him’

Close up of Capitol with Trump and America flag in the wind

Matthew Perna did nothing wrong on January 6, 2021.

The Pennsylvania man walked through an open door on the Senate side of the building shortly before 3 p.m. that afternoon. Capitol police, shown in surveillance video, stood by as hundreds of Americans entered the Capitol. Wearing a “Make America Great Again” sweatshirt, Perna, 37, left after about 20 minutes.

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Tennessee State Senate Staffer Says He Thinks He’ll Be the Donald Trump Candidate in TN-5 GOP Primary

Tres Wittum

A Tennessee state Senate staffer is considering running in the Republican primary for the 5th Congressional District and says that he thinks he’ll be the Donald Trump-endorsed candidate if he runs.

Charles Garfield Wittum III aka Tres Wittum, a senate aide to Senator Bo Watson (R-Hixson), has told The Tennessee Star that he is considering entering the already crowded Republican field for TN-5.

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Buckhead Site of Yet Another Violent Crime, Brian Kemp and Other GOP Leaders Still Not Endorsing Movement to Separate City from Atlanta

News of yet another violent crime in Buckhead apparently won’t nudge Georgia Governor Brian Kemp and other high-ranking GOP legislators to push for legislation to allow Buckhead residents to vote on separating from crime-plagued Atlanta. Members of the Atlanta Police Department (APD) reported a violent carjacking in Buckhead on Sunday.

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Florida House Redistricting Proposal Backs DeSantis’ Recommendations

A map from the Florida House proposes that Florida’s congressional redistricting process will see Congressional District 5, currently held by Representative Al Lawson (R-FL-5), eliminated as it currently sits. According to the new map, Lawson’s district would only encapsulate an area in Duval County.

The recommendation to shift the boundaries of District 5 come from Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. The rest of the voters in the Tallahassee and North Central Florida area would be incorporated into District 2, held by Representative Neal Dunn (R-FL-2).

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Connecticut Dems Move Forward on Constitutional Amendment to Guarantee Abortions

Mae Flexer

Connecticut’s elected Democrats are pushing to amend the state’s constitution to include access to abortions, in case abortion becomes illegal at the federal level.

“A legislative committee on Friday endorsed a proposal to enshrine the right to abortion in the Connecticut Constitution,” The Hartford Courant said. “The concept is in its earliest stages — the language of the proposed constitutional amendment has yet to be drafted — but it has already drawn support from Democrats and criticism from Republicans.”

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Commentary: John Stankey Stinks up CNN Even More

John Stankey

Yo! John Stankey! We told you CNN was stinking up AT&T. Now you are making it worse!

In an interview with CNBC last week, AT&T boss John Stankey exchanged his trademark “Mr. Hollywood Casual” for “Doctor Evil Lite,” while dodging every sensitive question about CNN’s “Mother Zucker” debacle. 

In fact, Stankey did the best non-stop weasel dance since the invention of “Whack-a-Mole.”

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Former Department of State Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus Answers Questions on Policy

Photos taken at the London protests against war in Ukraine.

Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed former Trump Department of State Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus in-studio to answer questions on policy and the Ukraine.

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Crom’s Crommentary: The Media’s Ever-Changing Narrative on Vladimir Putin and the Ukraine Response

Vladimir Putin

Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed the original all-star panelist Crom Carmichael in studio for another edition of Crom’s Crommentary.

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Music Spotlight: Country Radio Seminar

Country Radio Seminar is one of the most significant events in Nashville, as it brings country radio and music industry professionals together to educate each other, enhance skills, facilitate business, and promote the growth of the industry.

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EPA Inspector General Report Finds Contractor Manipulated Air Filter Data

White smoke emitting from a couple of buildings

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Inspector General found that a laboratory contractor with the Office of Research and Development inappropriately manipulated air filter data and failed to follow the appropriate guidance for data of 95 air filter samples, rendering them unusable.

The EPA said the data “drives regulatory decisions, and therefore, it is crucial to accurately assess the quality of data being collected.”

According to the Feb. 16 OIG report, in November 2018, the contractor “misidentified” a subset of filters that they had weighed “during either the loading process in the automated weighing system or by the manner of recording the weight of the filters after they were weighed.”

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Crime Task Forces, Bus System Among Issues Discussed at Connecticut Budget Appropriations Meeting

The efficacy of crime task forces, status of CTtransit bus lines and issuance of non-driver IDs were among the wide ranging issues Connecticut lawmakers dug into with state officials at a recent hearing looking into the back half of Gov. Ned Lamont’s biennium budget.

Members in both chambers of the General Assembly’s Appropriations Committee held a hearing Feb. 18 with state officials serving on transportation, regulation and protection agencies.

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University Leadership Told the Student Newspaper to Stop Printing, Students Fought Back and Won

Pro-free speech campus activism at Texas A&M University defeated the university president’s attempt to cease the print production of The Battalion, a student-run newspaper.

The Battalion reported Feb. 11 that university President M. Katherine Banks ordered the publication to stop printing physical copies of the paper at the end of the 2022 spring semester.

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House Physician Lifts COVID Mask Mandate in Chamber Ahead of Biden’s State of Union Speech

The House over the weekend lifted its COVID-19 mask mandate, ahead of President Biden’s State of the Union on Tuesday night in House chambers before a joint session of Congress.

The change, which makes masks optional, was announced Sunday by Capitol Physician Brian Monahan.

“Individuals may choose to mask at any time, but it is no longer a requirement,” he said in a letter to lawmakers, who are returning Monday to Capitol Hill.

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Arizona Senate Study Estimates 200K Ballots Counted in 2020 with Mismatched Signatures

Astudy of Maricopa County’s mail ballots in Arizona’s 2020 presidential election estimates that more than 200,000 ballots with mismatched signatures were counted without being reviewed, or “cured” — more than eight times the 25,000 signature mismatches requiring curing acknowledged by the county.

Commissioned by the Arizona State Senate, the signature verification pilot study was conducted by Shiva Ayyadurai’s Election Systems Integrity Institute, which released its final report to the public on Tuesday. Ayyadurai is an engineer and entrpreneur with four degrees from MIT who bills himself as the inventor of email, a claim which critics have alleged is exaggerated.

Of the 1,911,918 early voting mail ballots that Maricopa County received and counted in the 2020 presidential election, the county reported that 25,000, or 1.3%, had signature mismatches that required curing, but only 587 (2.3%) of those were confirmed mismatched signatures.

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Over 70 Percent of Americans Support School Choice: Poll

Over 70% of Americans support funding students’ education rather than public education systems, according to a new poll conducted by RealClear Opinion Research.

Among a majority of respondents, 72% support school choice, according to a poll conducted by RealClear Opinion Research, which surveyed over 2,000 registered voters from Feb. 5 – 9, 2022.

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Missouri’s Auto Inspections Phased Out in Proposed Bill

Steering wheel of a Honda

After gradually reducing requirements for automobiles to pass a mechanic’s inspection before obtaining a registration, a bill in the Missouri state legislature would eventually end the program.

Currently, motor vehicles with more than 150,000 miles and 10 years from their manufacturing model year must pass a biennial safety inspection. House Bill 2499, sponsored by Rep. J. Eggleston, R-Maysville, changes the law to exempt motor vehicles with less than 150,000 miles and manufactured after Jan. 1, 2012.

During testimony on Wednesday before the House Downsizing State Government Committee, Eggleston said legislators in 2019 considered eliminating the inspection program but compromised instead and loosened requirements.

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U.S. Home Ownership Rate Sees Highest Annual Surge Ever Recorded

The rate of homeownership in the United States saw its highest surge ever recorded in 2020, with homebuying rates jumping significantly even as the country continues to see record-low stock in most states.

The homeownership rate “climbed to 65.5% in 2020, up 1.3% from 2019 and the largest annual increase on record,” the National Association of Realtors said in a press release this week.

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Supreme Court Hears Blockbuster Climate Case with Separation of Powers Implications

The Supreme Court heard arguments in West Virginia v. EPA on Monday, a blockbuster case that could have major ramifications in future separation of powers cases.

The case, which stems from an Obama administration climate rule, has wide-ranging implications for how the federal agencies may issue future regulations and rules, according to the parties that brought the case before the high court. States, environmental groups, large power utility companies, civil liberties organizations and pro-coal industry groups have inserted themselves in the case over the last several years, signaling the importance of the questions it has raised.

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Minnesota Budget Surplus Balloons to $9.2 Billion

An analysis from the Minnesota Management and Budget office detailed that the state’s budget surplus has increased to $9.253 billion.

The new number is an increase from a previous estimate published in December.

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State Official: More Money Needed for Ohio Primary Elections

Frank LaRose of Ohio

Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose wants more money from the General Assembly to conduct the state’s May 3 primary after continued delays in creating new district maps increased pressure on county boards of elections.

LaRose, who also is a member of the Ohio Redistricting Commission that twice had maps thrown out by the Ohio Supreme Court, also ordered county boards to start taking steps to place candidates for the General Assembly on the ballot, even though the court has yet to approve a third set of maps passed late last week.

“The General Assembly has the legal authority to set the time, place, and manner of our elections, and they’ve made it clear that the state House and Senate contests will be placed on the May 3 ballot,” LaRose said. “I’ve also communicated to the legislative leaders the risks associated with rushing this process. Elections officials across Ohio are concerned about the compressed timeline for candidate certification, ballot preparation and the programming and testing of voting equipment.”

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Commentary: In West Virginia, Carpetbagger Alex Mooney Meets His Match

When we last checked in with U.S. Representative Alex Mooney (R-W.Va.), evidence of his misuse of campaign funds had been referred to the House Ethics Committee by the Office of Congressional Ethics.

As American Greatness has reported, Mooney’s congressional campaign used campaign money to pay for the congressman’s personal expenses, including $3,475 in meals from Chick-fil-A and other fast-food restaurants, two vacation trips to resorts in West Virginia, and $17,250 in gift card purchases from a Catholic Church gift shop. He has repaid more than $12,000 of a disputed $40,115 as a result of the OCE investigation.

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Department of Interior to Change Names of over 600 Sites to Remove the Word ‘Squaw’

On Tuesday, the United States Department of Interior (DOI) announced that it would be declaring the term “squaw” to be derogatory, and would rename over 600 historical sites that feature the term.

As reported by CNN, DOI Secretary Deb Haaland first wrote an order back in November declaring that the longtime term “squaw,” which often referred to female Native Americans, was racist and sexist. To this end, Haaland announced the creation of the Names Task Force, consisting of 13 members, for the purpose of coming up with new names for the over 600 sites that included the term in their names.

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Commitment to Behavioral Health in Connecticut Governor’s Spending Plan

Ned Lamont

A number of programs within Connecticut’s health-related agencies could be the benefactors of added cash infusions in the second year of Gov. Ned Lamont’s 2022-23 biennium budget.

Members of the Connecticut General Assembly sitting on the Joint Appropriations Committee discussed with agency heads a range of issues — from sports gambling to staffing shortages to lead abatement programs — at a Feb. 24 meeting.

Lamont, a 68-year-old Democrat, earlier this year announced a proposed amendment to the second half of the biennium budget. He wants to add 2.4% into the spending plan for fiscal year 2023, which would bring its total to $24.2 million.

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American Bar Association Requires Law Schools to Educate Students on ‘Bias, Cross-Cultural Competency, and Racism’

Man in a suit writing on paperwork at a table

The American Bar Association House of Delegates has approved new law school accreditation standards at the 2022 ABA Midyear Meeting, of which two amendments were focused on “diversity.”

In order to eliminate bias and enhance diversity, the ABA’s amended Standard 303(c) requires that “a law school shall provide education on bias, cross-cultural competency, and racism: (1) at the start of the program of legal education, and (2) at least once again before graduation.”

To fulfill this requirement, “Law schools must demonstrate that all law students are required to participate in a substantial activity designed to reinforce the skill of cultural competency and their obligation as future lawyers to work to eliminate racism in the legal profession.”

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Tennessee Senate Approves Bill Creating Three-Year Residency Requirements for Federal Candidates in Primaries

Frank Niceley of Tennessee

The Tennessee Senate has approved a bill creating creating three-year residency requirements for candidates seeking to run in primaries for U.S. Senate and U.S. House. The vote was 31-1.

State Senator Frank Niceley (R-Church Hill) is the sponsor of the Senate version that was approved, SB2616.

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