SCOTUS Authenticates Leaked Document, Orders Investigation

A message from the Public Information Office of the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) says a report in German-owned Politico containing a leaked draft of the Court’s opinion to overturn Roe v. Wade is authentic.

“Yesterday, a news organization published an opinion in a pending case,” said the statement from the Court. “Justices circulate draft opinions internally as a routine and essential part of the Court’s confidential deliberative work. Although the document described in yesterday’s reports is authentic, it does not represent a decision by the Court or the final position on the issues of the case.”

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Biden: Women Have a ‘Fundamental’ Right to an Abortion

President Joe Biden on Tuesday called a woman’s right to abortion “fundamental” after a draft of a U.S. Supreme Court opinion leaked to Politico indicates a majority of justices will rule to overturn Roe v. Wade.

“I believe that a woman’s right to choose is fundamental,” Biden said in a statement. “Roe has been the law of the land for almost fifty years, and basic fairness and the stability of our law demand that it not be overturned.”

The 1973 Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade established abortion as a constitutional right.

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Commentary: Congress Authorized DHS and CISA’s ‘Disinformation Governance Board’ Activities in 2018

In 2018, Congress unanimously passed legislation, H.R. 3359, that authorizes the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to disseminate information to the private sector including Big Tech social media companies in a bid to combat disinformation by potential foreign and domestic terrorists.

According to the agency’s website, CISA says it “rout[es] disinformation concerns” to “appropriate social media platforms”: “The [Mis, Dis, Malinformation] MDM team serves as a switchboard for routing disinformation concerns to appropriate social media platforms and law enforcement.”

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Commentary: If Elections Are to Be Trusted, They Must Be Trustworthy

early voting

The way we cast our ballots matters. Some methods are not secure. Some methods are overly complicated. Some methods are not transparent. Any of these shortcomings is enough to undermine public confidence in the outcomes of our elections – and thus undermine our democracy itself.

Voting by mail suffers from every one of those shortcomings. In 2020, the avalanche of nonprofit monies used to turn urban election offices into partisan turnout centers identified and exacerbated these flaws and the impact of legal violations.

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Lee Signs New Tennessee Public School Funding Formula into Law

A new funding formula for public education in Tennessee was signed into law by Gov. Bill Lee on Monday.

Lee said “it’s long overdue that we make this change” before being joined by legislative leaders and Department of Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn on the stage of Franklin High School, where Lee attended.

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Tennessee Lawmakers Approve Sales Tax Deal for New Chattanooga Lookouts Stadium

State sales tax funding for a new baseball stadium in Chattanooga was passed in the last week of Tennessee’s legislative session.

House Bill 2609 was approved 79-11 by the House and 28-0 in the Senate. It would allow the Chattanooga Lookouts to move to a new stadium in the city and retain a sales tax deal where the Lookouts keep the first 5.5% of the state’s 7% sales tax for sales at the stadium and would extend the deal to apply to non-baseball events at the stadium.

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German-Owned Politico Publishes Purported Leaked Draft Decision Suggesting Supreme Court Vote to Overturn Roe v. Wade

A draft of the majority opinion from Justice Samuel Alito leaked to Politico suggests the Supreme Court voted to strike down Roe v. Wade, the landmark abortion rights decision.

The reported 98-page opinion of at least five justices offers a sharp rebuke of Roe and Casey v. Planned Parenthood, both of which protected abortion rights.

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Twitter Locks Tennessee Star Account Again After Reposting Same Factual News Story

For the second time in three days, Silicon Valley giant Twitter has locked The Tennessee Star out of its account for posting a factual story. 

The temporary ban comes less than a day after The Star’s account was unlocked. After its account was unlocked Sunday, The Star reposted the story that caused the account to be locked in the first place. 

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Apple Employees Say They Don’t Want to Return to a ‘Whiter,’ ‘Male-Dominated’ Office

As computer giant Apple considers bringing employees back to work in person while the COVID-19 pandemic winds down, some of those employees are worried that returning to work in person will make the company less diverse. 

“Apple will likely always find people willing to work here, but our current policies requiring everyone to relocate to the office their team happens to be based in, and being in the office at least 3 fixed days of the week, will change the makeup of our workforce,” said an open letter written by employees. “It will make Apple younger, whiter, more male-dominated, more neuro-normative, more able-bodied, in short, it will lead to privileges deciding who can work for Apple, not who’d be the best fit.”

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Whitmer Directs Michigan State Agencies to Spread Voting Information

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed an executive directive on Sunday ordering state agencies to spread information about how to register to vote.

On Friday, Whitmer vetoed a bill that aimed to notify potential voters on on an absentee ballot application that it is a felony to vote more than once in the same election.

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Hillsdale College Connecticut Campus Hosts First Major Event: ‘Religious Liberty and the American Founding’

SOMERS, Connecticut – Hillsdale College’s campus in Somers, Connecticut hosted its first major event over the weekend with a seminar titled “Religious Liberty and the American Founding.”

Dr. Matthew Spalding, Hillsdale’s vice president for Washington operations and dean of the college’s Van Andel Graduate School of Government, spoke Friday evening on the topic of civil and religious liberty.

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Minneapolis Police Union: The State Had a ‘Predetermined Conclusion’ of Minnesota Department of Human Rights Report

The head of the Minneapolis police union fired back at a recent report that accuses the city’s police of racism. She is not alone.

The report, compiled by the Minnesota Department of Human Rights (MDHR), concluded that “there is probable cause that the City and MPD engage in a pattern or practice of race discrimination in violation of the Minnesota Human Rights Act.” Specifically, the report says MPD officers take harsher action against black people than white people in similar circumstances, use offensive language, and maintain anonymous social media accounts “to surveil black individuals and organizations.”

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Proposed Pennsylvania Law Would Make Drunk Drivers Pay Support to Children of Those They Killed

A newly proposed Pennsylvania law would require drunk drivers who cause deadly accidents to pay support to the children of those they killed.

State Rep. Anthony DeLuca (D-Pittsburgh) is currently seeking cosponsors in the House of Representatives for the legislation.

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Kemp Takes Fire During GOP Gubernatorial Debate, Perdue Campaign Claims Victory

ATLANTA, Georgia – Incumbent Republican Governor Brian Kemp took rhetorical attacks from all of his opponents during the Georgia Public Broadcasting-hosted GOP gubernatorial debate that aired on Sunday evening.

The debate took place as part of the The Atlanta Press Club’s Loudermilk-Young Debate series, which aired on GPBS.

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Trump-Endorsed AG Candidate John Gordon Blasts Opponent, Offers Election Integrity Solutions

Atlanta, Georgia – The Georgia Star News spoke with Trump-endorsed candidate for John Gordon at the Real Georgia Speaks Team Trump Bus Tour where he had strong words for his opponent, incumbent Attorney General Chris Carr.

“We refer to him as Chris ‘Do Nothing’ Carr,” Gordan said. “He just has not fulfilled the obligations and duties of this office. He’s done nothing on election integrity except deny that there was a problem.”

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Wisconsin Gubernatorial Candidate Tim Michels Denounces Out-of-State Connections

GOP gubernatorial candidate Tim Michels is distancing himself from his connections to other states, as he runs to lead Wisconsin.

First reported by Wisconsin Right Now, Michels allegedly has extensive holdings in Connecticut and New York.

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DeSantis Hints at Special Session for Constitutional Carry

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), once again, made a plea for the Florida Legislature to get a constitutional carry bill to his desk. He made the promise to get the policy push done by the time he is no longer governor and even floated the idea of a special session to get it done.

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School Choice About Options, Not Dismantling Public Schools, Republicans Say

HERNDON, Virginia – Panelists at the Republican Advance told attendees at a school choice breakout session that the goal of GOP efforts is to get tax dollars to follow children even when they leave public schools, providing more opportunities for families. Panelists described the push for school choice as a way to empower parents and use capitalism-style competition to motivate improvement in public schools without dismantling the system.

“We need to make sure we’re not so focused on school choice, which we should be, I mean that is one of the pathways to a better education, but focusing on the fact that we need to find ways to better educate our children should be the primary goal,” former Loudoun County School Board member Jill Turgeon said at the Saturday breakout session.

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Vance Campaign Confident, Others Say Race Is ‘Wide Open’ Before Primary Election

With the deadline to vote in Ohio’s primary races approaching Tuesday night, the top candidates in the hotly-contested Republican U.S. Senate battle have varying views on what the outcome of the race will be. 

“We’re spending the day before the election with voters at town halls all across Ohio, leaving no stone unturned. JD is in a strong position, and we are confident JD will be the Republican nominee,” said Taylor Van Kirk, a spokesperson for candidate J.D. Vance. 

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Creator of Tennvoterguide.com, Craig Huey Goes Down the List of Top Picks per County District

Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed California Refugee and the creator of Tennvoterguide.com, Craig Huey to the newsmaker line to give his top picks in county districts.

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Crom’s Crommentary: The Importance of Defining ‘Un-American,’ ‘Disinformation,’ and ‘Misinformation’ for Political Discussion

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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Commentary: Attending a Different Selective Institution

May is National College Decision Month, when 1.2 million Class of 2022 high school seniors must commit to the institution where they’ll spend the next four-to-six years. 

Two of those high school seniors, Bill and Jane, will soon graduate and both will attend a very selective, but very different, institution in the fall. Let’s explore and project the net return on their decisions, six-years from now, based on facts and national averages.

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Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger Dismisses Concerns About Georgia Drop Boxes During Debate

ATLANTA, Georgia – During a Georgia Public Broadcasting-hosted and broadcasted debate on Monday, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger dismissed concerns about drop boxes and their impact on election integrity.

In response to a question about legislation banning drop boxes, Raffensperger replied, “People are missing the point on drop boxes because you can use the U.S. postal service.”

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Latest Report Shows Continued Budget Surplus for Connecticut Leaders

Officials in Connecticut have even more funds to use than originally expected, according to a new Consensus Revenue Forecast from the Office of Policy and Management.

The report projects more than $22 billion in General Fund revenue, a stark increase from estimated funds with the budget passed last year.

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Exclusive: Former Director of ICE Tom Homan Endorses David Perdue for Governor

Atlanta, Georgia – In an exclusive statement obtained by The Georgia Star News, former Acting Director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Tom Homan has endorsed David Perdue in the race for Governor of Georgia.

Homan had nothing but harsh words for the incumbent governor, Brian Kemp in his statement backing Perdue.

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Williamson County District 4 School Board Candidate Elliott Franklin’s Incumbent Opponent Is Pfizer VP

Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed Williamson County District Four School Board Candidate, Elliot Franklin in studio to talk about his candidacy and incumbent.

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Candidate for Williamson County District 4 School Board Elliott Franklin Discusses Teachers Departing Due to Toxicity, CRT, Curriculum Bait-and-Switch

Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed Williamson County’s District Four GOP School Board Candidate, Elliott Franklin in studio to discuss what he’ll do if elected to remove the toxic environment for members and teachers.

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Affordable Housing a Growing Concern Statewide in Pennsylvania, Low Priority in the Statehouse

Housing costs in Pennsylvania are rising, but the General Assembly has not prioritized the expansion of housing supply as an area of concern. As rents and housing prices rise across the Commonwealth, inaction now could cause pain in the near future.

Housing prices statewide rose by 14% from 2020 to 2021, as The Center Square previously reported, and in central Pennsylvania, apartment rents have increased 40% since 2017. Rents in Philadelphia increased almost 10% in 2021. The Lehigh Valley has had similar pressures, with one-third of households spending at least 30% of their income on rent or mortgages.

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Supreme Court Rules Boston Violated Constitution by Not Allowing Christian Flag Outside City Hall

The Supreme Court ruled unanimously Monday that the city of Boston violated the U.S. Constitution when it refused to allow a local organization to fly a Christian flag in front of City Hall.

The nine justices said the city has established a public forum outside of City Hall, and invited all organizations to use the flagpole in front of the building to commemorate events. Not allowing the Christian flag to be flown denied the group the same rights as those afforded to all others and was a violation of free speech, said the court.

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San Francisco Spent $160 Million Only to Have Homeless People Die in Rat-Infested Hotels

A housing project based out of old hotels in San Francisco became the site of overdoses, rampant crime, violence and unsafe living conditions, according to a San Francisco Chronicle report.

The hotels are the main components of the city’s $160 million permanent supportive housing program, which failed in its goal of helping residents gain enough stability to find independence and their own housing, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. A quarter of the tenants tracked by the government after exiting supportive housing in 2020 died.

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Arizona AG Brnovich Falls Out of First Place in Senate GOP Primary as Opponents Ramp Up Ad Spending

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich has slipped from his first place position in the state’s GOP Senate primary.

Since last year, Brnovich has held a consistent lead in the primary to go up against Democrat Sen. Mark Kelly as the GOP attempts to reclaim majority control of the Senate.

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‘Borderline Illiterate’: Christopher Rufo Rips Teachers’ Union Boss for ‘Fighting Against’ Parents

Manhattan Institute fellow Christopher Rufo ripped American Federation of Teachers (AFT) President Randi Weingarten in a Monday interview with the Daily Caller News Foundation, addressing the latest battle in an ongoing feud.

Weingarten wrote a Friday op-ed in Time magazine titled “Extremists Are Using Lies to Undermine America’s Public Schools: We Need to Take a Stand,” which criticized “Rufo and other dark money-funded extremists” for their “attack” on public schools. Rufo, an advocate against the teaching of Critical Race Theory (CRT) in public schools, responded to the op-ed, calling Weingarten “perhaps the single greatest oppressor of American children in the United States today.”

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Ford Reports Devastating Losses Thanks to Electric Vehicle Gamble

Major U.S. automaker Ford blamed its sizable investment in electric vehicle (EV) company Rivian for its dramatic revenue decline in the first quarter of 2022.

Ford reported revenue of $34.5 billion between January and March, a 5% decline relative to the same period in 2021, and a net loss of $3.1 billion, according to the company’s earnings report released Wednesday. The Detroit automaker said its large investment in Rivian accounted for $5.4 billion in losses during the first quarter.

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Florida U.S. Rep. Gaetz Blasts DHS Sec. Mayorkas at Congressional Hearing

Florida Republican Congressman Matt Gaetz blasted Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas at a recent House Judiciary Committee hearing on border security.

In his line of questioning, Gaetz asked Mayorkas about the removal process of 1.2 million people who are in the U.S. illegally who’ve been given deportation orders by judges and haven’t been removed.

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Sen. Kapenga Presses State Superintendent for CRT Webinar for Wisconsin Teachers

There are new questions for Wisconsin’s state superintendent of schools about critical race theory, politics, and a webinar for teachers in the state.

Sen. Chris Kapenga, R-Delafield, on Monday released an open letter to State Superintendent Jill Underly that asks her a series of questions about a February webinar featuring activist and author Charlene Carruthers.

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Missing NFL Bets Could Be Costly for Ohio Sports Gaming

Ohio could lose as much as $130 million a week if it continues to hold to a Jan. 1 launch date for legalized sports betting and miss the majority of the NFL season, an industry-leading group said.

PlayOhio, part of the PlayUSA Network, estimates the state’s handle could reach between $8-10 billion over the first 12 months and almost $1 billion in gross gaming revenue. It also estimates, partly because of the state’s two NFL teams, gambling operations could bring in as much as $130 million per week in NFL-specific betting volume.

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Former Maricopa County Attorney Allister Adel Has Died

Former Maricopa County Attorney Allister Adel died Saturday of what representatives call “health complications.” She was 45. 

She was the first woman elected as Maricopa County’s chief legal officer.

“On behalf of the DeNitto family, we are deeply saddened to announce that Allister Adel DeNitto passed away this morning due to health complications,” the statement read. “We are asking that the press and the public honor her, her legacy, and our family by respecting our privacy at this difficult time.”

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Gov. Lee Suspends Executions Pending Independent Review of Lethal Injection Process

Tennessee has suspended executions for those on death row after an “oversight” in the lethal injection process of one prisoner caused the execution process to be halted in the prisoner’s final hours. 

During the suspension period, a review of the execution process will be conducted, according to Monday reports. 

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