Hamilton County Mayoral Candidate Matt Hullander Talks Background and Goals

Matt Hullander

Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Leahy welcomed Hamilton County, Tennessee Mayoral Candidate Matt Hullander to discuss why he’s the best choice for the county.

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16 Republican AGs Seek Federal Pressure on China, Mexico over Fentanyl Crisis

Antony Blinken

Sixteen Republican state attorneys general are calling on Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken to take action against China and Mexico for their role in creating a fentanyl crisis in the U.S.

“China’s complete unwillingness to police the production and distribution of fentanyl precursors and Mexico’s subsequent failure to control illegal manufacturing of fentanyl using those precursors,” the attorneys general argue, poses a daily threat to Americans.

West Virginia and Arizona are leading the effort. Joining them are the attorneys general of Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, South Carolina, South Dakota and Texas. They say they’ve witnessed an “extraordinary tide of senseless death from fentanyl” in their states.

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After Defund the Police Changes Local Sex Offender Policies, Students Feel ‘Compromised’

With cops in Austin, Texas, not supervising “hundreds of sex offender cases” due to Defund the Police budget cuts, Campus Reform spoke with students at the University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) about their safety.

“The situation in the city of Austin has been critical for some time ever since the city of Austin council decided to defund the police unanimously in the summer of 2020, and reduce their police budget by one-third,” sophomore Carter Moxley said.

Moxley also discussed UT Austin President Jay Hartzell’s decision last November to “increase [University of Texas Police Department] patrol in the west campus area and develop additional options to enhance safety for [the] students” after a violent incident near campus.

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Wisconsin Republican Party Blasted Biden Administration as Vice President Kamala Harris Visited Milwaukee

The Republican Party of Wisconsin slammed the Biden Administration as Vice President Kamala Harris visits Milwaukee.

Harris will promote the bipartisan infrastructure bill, which passed Congress last year and was signed by President Joe Biden.

The visit from the vice president comes as Biden’s approval numbers have continued to plummet, potentially endangering Democratic incumbent lawmakers in Wisconsin and across the country.

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Despite Increased Measures, Security Concerns Remain at Ohio State University

Safety concerns remain an issue for students at the Ohio State University (OSU), despite increased funding for security measures across the campus.

Two individuals were arrested after a stabbing occurred in a parking garage on the campus of OSU. According to law enforcement and university officials, none of the individuals involved were connected to the college.

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Commentary: More Trouble for the FBI in the Whitmer Kidnapping Case

Gretchen Whitmer

The media went wild last week after Joe Biden’s Justice Department finally produced a criminal indictment to support the claim that January 6 was an “insurrection” planned by militiamen loyal to Donald Trump: Eleven members of the Oath Keepers, including its founder, Stewart Rhodes, face the rarely used charge of seditious conspiracy for their brief and nonviolent involvement at the Capitol protest that day.

Journalists luxuriated in the news, jeering those of us who had correctly noted that the Justice Department had failed to charge anyone with insurrection or sedition for more than a year.

But the press does not share the same zeal in covering another politically charged investigation: the imploding criminal case against five men accused of plotting to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer in 2020. The kidnapping narrative shares many similarities with their preferred telling of January 6, not the least of which is that alleged militias incited by Trump attempted to carry out a domestic terror attack.

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Pennsylvania Senate President Pro Tempore Corman Calls for Philly District Attorney’s Impeachment

Outrage at Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner’s (D) leniency toward criminals has driven Pennsylvania Senate President Pro Tempore Jake Corman (R-Bellefonte) to call for the prosecutor’s impeachment.

Corman sent a letter to leaders of the GOP-run state House of Representatives asking them to seek Krasner’s removal. In his missive, the lawmaker deplored the city’s sharp present rise in violent crime and said the district attorney has played a major role in that spike by allowing many offenders to escape punishment.

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Commentary: We Are All ‘Domestic Terrorists’ Now

Paul Hodgkins, according to Joe Biden’s Justice Department, is a domestic terrorist.

A working-class man from Tampa, Hodgkins committed what Democrats and the media consider a murderous crime comparable to flying a packed jetliner into a skyscraper or detonating a truck filled with explosives under a crowded federal building.

Paul Hodgkins entered the Capitol building on January 6, 2021.

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Commentary: Police Officer Who Killed Ashli Babbitt was Cleared of Criminal Wrongdoing Without Interview

When U.S. Capitol Police Lt. Michael Byrd went on “NBC Nightly News” to tell his side of shooting and killing unarmed Jan. 6 rioter Ashli Babbitt, he made a point to note he’d been investigated by several agencies and exonerated for his actions that day.

“There’s an investigative process [and] I was cleared by the DOJ [Department of Justice], and FBI and [the D.C.] Metropolitan Police,” he told NBC News anchor Lester Holt in August, adding that the Capitol Police also cleared him of wrongdoing and decided not to discipline or demote him for the shooting.

Byrd then answered a series of questions by Holt about the shooting, but what he told the friendly journalist, he likely never told investigators. That’s because he refused to answer their questions, according to several sources and documents reviewed by RealClearInvestigations.

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Arizona Gubernatorial Candidate Kari Lake Offers Groundbreaking Solution to Fix Border: Go Around Feds with an Interstate Compact

Kari Lake

Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake unveiled a border security plan aimed at circumventing the federal government through the creation of an interstate compact.

Titled “Defend Arizona: We will do what Washington will not,” her plan will bring states together to use Article I, Section 10 of the U.S. Constitution to “declare their territories as under invasion and declare it their sovereign right to secure the borders of the United States.” Lake told The Arizona Sun Times, “The people of Arizona and the people of this country are dying to have real solutions to bring sanity and the security back to the border.”

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Just a Third of Americans View COVID-19 as a Top-Five Priority, Poll Shows

Less than 40% of Americans view the coronavirus as a top-five issue to address in 2022, a new poll shows.

The Associated Press-NORC survey found that just 33% of Americans labeled virus concerns as a top issue, down 16 points from a year ago. On the other hand, 68% of respondents said that the economy was the top issue on which to focus this year, with subtopics ranging from inflation to unemployment and the national debt.

The results come as inflation has hit a multi-decade high and supply chain bottlenecks continue to affect Americans’ lives. However, it also comes as the Omicron coronavirus variant has fueled daily case counts near record-highs, with the U.S. now averaging over 650,000 new infections per day.

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Former Sheriff Slams Walz for ‘Apathetic’ Response to Record Homicides

Former Sheriff Richard Stanek and Gov. Tom Wolf

In 1995, Minneapolis saw a record-setting 97 homicides. Operating by the strict definition of a homicide as an event where one person intentionally kills another, there were 97 homicides in the city last year.

The final homicide of 2021 occurred just hours before the new year as a 15-year-old boy was gunned down in north Minneapolis. No arrests have been made. The shooters are believed to have fired from a vehicle.

Some homicides, like the killing of Winston Smith in June, were justified and non-criminal. Technicalities aside, most share a concern about the high number of murders in 2021.

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Victor Davis Hanson Commentary: The Truths We Dared Not Speak in 2021

As the long year of 2021 finally came to a close, there were a number of truths Americans on the Left found themselves privately acknowledging but unable to say in public for fear of doing damage to their political cause, their own reputations, or their sense of security. But as 2022 advances, it will become even more difficult to hide these truths.

Collusion, RIP
No one wishes to speak of the “dossier” anymore. Everyone knows why: it was never a dossier. It was always a mishmash concoction of half-baked fantasies and outright lies, sloppily thrown together by the grifter and has-been ex-British spy and Trump hater, Christopher Steele—all in the pay of Hillary Clinton, the original architect of the collusion hoax.

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Minnesota Arsonist Who Attacked Target Headquarters During Nicollet Mall Riot Sentenced to 100 Months in Prison

Hands in handcuffs

Victor Devon Edwards, 34, of St. Paul traveled to Minneapolis during the Nicollet Mall riot in August 2020 where he was caught on video looting and committing arson. Earlier this week he was sentenced to 100 months behind bars.

The Nicollet riot occurred after online rumors spread that police had killed a black person outside the mall. In reality, a fleeing murder suspect actually killed himself — but this didn’t stop the looters who smashed, grabbed and burned their way through luxury stores and other buildings in what has since been praised in a local outlet as a “mini-rebellion of the alienated dispossessed.”

While the majority of rioters seem to have evaded punishment, one trio has been put under the law enforcement microscope for their roles in the chaos. Edwards is one of these men and was recently convicted and sentenced for causing just over $941,000 of  damage to the Target headquarters in addition to looting and burning other buildings.

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Commentary: The FBI’s Criminal Lead Informant in Whitmer ‘Kidnapping’ Caper

Gretchen Whitmer

In June 2020, as the country attempted to recover from deadly and destructive riots after the death of George Floyd, a man from Wisconsin hosted a national conference of self-styled “militia” members in a suburban Columbus, Ohio hotel. Stephen Robeson, founder of the Wisconsin chapter of the Three Percenters, an alleged militia group on the FBI’s naughty list, pestered his contacts across the country to participate in the gathering.

People who attended the conference, including two men later charged with federal crimes related to a plot to abduct Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer from her vacation cottage in 2020, observed that the hotel was crawling with federal agents.

One of the feds at the conference was none other than Stephen Robeson himself.

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Commentary: Democrats Promised An Insurrection But All They Got Was a Lousy Obstruction Case

Former President Donald Trump

History, it appears, is repeating itself—at least when it comes to the latest crusade to destroy Donald Trump and everyone around him.

For nearly three years, the American people were warned that Donald Trump had been in cahoots with the Kremlin to rig the 2016 presidential election. Trump-Russia election collusion, the original “stop the steal” campaign—that is, until questioning the outcome of American elections was designated a criminal conspiracy after November 2020—dominated the attention of the ruling class and the entirety of the national news media.

Every instrument of power—the FBI, a secret surveillance court, congressional committees, a special counsel—was leveraged to uncover the “truth” about the Trump campaign’s alleged dirty dealings with Mother Russia.

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Minnesota GOP Calls on Sheriff to Resign, Police-Reform Democrats Silent

Dave Hutchinson

The Republican Party of Minnesota has called on Hennepin County Sheriff Dave Hutchinson to resign after he drunkenly crashed his county-owned vehicle outside of Alexandria earlier this month.

“As Hennepin County faces serious challenges with violent crime, residents need a sheriff who is laser-focused on public safety. Sheriff Hutchinson should step down and focus on his health so residents can have a top law enforcement officer better able to focus on fighting crime,” the party said in a statement.

Hutchinson rolled his vehicle off the road while traveling home to Minneapolis from a sheriffs’ conference. After the accident, his urine revealed a blood alcohol content of .13 — nearly twice the legal limit of .08.

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Commentary: Justice Department Moves to Conceal Police Misconduct on January 6

After months of foot-dragging, Joe Biden’s Justice Department is preparing for the first set of trials related to its sprawling prosecution of January 6 defendants: Robert Gieswein, who turned himself in and was arrested on January 19 for his involvement in the Capitol protest, is scheduled to stand trial in February.

A week after his arrest, Gieswein, 24 at the time, was indicted by a federal grand jury on six counts including “assaulting, resisting, or impeding” law enforcement with a dangerous weapon that day. He has been behind bars ever since, denied bail while Judge Emmet Sullivan delayed his trial on numerous occasions. Gieswein is among 40 or so January 6 defendants held in a part of the D.C. jail system solely used to detain Capitol protesters.

Federal prosecutors accuse Gieswein of using a chemical spray against police officers and carrying a baseball bat. Clad in military-style gear, Gieswein climbed through a broken window shortly after the first breach of the building. He told a reporter on the scene that “the corrupt politicians who have been in office for 50 or 60 years . . . need to be imprisoned.” Democratic politicians, Gieswein complained, sold out the country to “the Rothchilds and the Rockefellers,” a remark the FBI investigator on his case described as an “anti-Semitic” conspiracy theory.

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Minnesota Mayor: Our City Is ‘Under Attack from Mobile Criminals’

The mayor of Edina, a Minneapolis suburb in Hennepin County, has called on city leaders and residents to work together to extinguish increasing levels of crime.

Mayor Jim Hovland said in a recent letter to residents that the majority of criminals, out to steal cars and other property, are not from Edina. He called them “mobile criminals,” adding that some of them have assaulted their victims and even Good Samaritans.

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Florida Only State with Passing Grade for Anti-Child Trafficking

People on sidewalk of Miami, Florida

Florida ranked first in a nationwide analysis of states’ efforts to combat child sex trafficking.

According to a new report by Shared Hope International and the Institute for Justice and Advocacy, the majority of states, 40 out of 50, and the District of Columbia received failing grades for their anti-child and youth sex trafficking efforts.

Florida was the only state to receive a C grade. Ten states received D grades and 40 states received F grades. No states received A or B grades.

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Democratic Dark Money Giant Poured Millions into Bail Funds in 2020, Some That Helped Alleged Violent Criminals Back onto the Streets

Kamala Harris

A prominent Democratic dark money group funneled nearly $6 million into bail funds in 2020, some of which have a history of helping allegedly violent criminals back onto the street, tax records show.

Among the bail funds that received funding from the Tides Center in 2020 include the Minnesota Freedom Fund, which helped post bail for a man accused of sexually assaulting an eight-year-old girl in July 2020, and the Massachusetts Bail Fund, which helped post bail for a woman accused of stuffing her newborn baby in a garbage can outside a Boston pizza shop in February 2021.

The Tides Center reported in its 2020 Form 990 that it provided a sum total of $5.97 million to 23 bail funds in 2020, a dramatic increase from the year prior when it reported donating just $216,000 to eight bail funds.

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Crom’s Crommentary: ‘Biden’s Foreign Policies Could End up Creating Many More Problems Than His Terrible Domestic Policies’

Wednesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed the original all-star panelist Crom Carmichael in studio for another edition of Crom’s Crommentary and Biden’s foreign policy fails.

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Parents of Alleged 15-Year-Old Michigan High School Shooter Charged with Involuntary Manslaughter

Oxford High School

A Michigan prosecutor on Friday filed involuntary manslaughter charges against the parents of 15-year-old Ethan Crumbley who, earlier this week, allegedly killed four students at Oxford High School and injured several more. Prosecutor Karen McDonald says the actions of the parents went “far beyond negligence.”

Both James and Jennifer Crumbley has been charged with four counts each of involuntary manslaughter, which potentially carry sentences of up to 15-years in prison.

“The parents were the only individuals in the position to know the access to the weapons,” said McDonald. The gun Ethan allegedly used had been purchased by his father, James, just four days before the rampage.

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Mayor Scott Conger of Jackson, Tennessee See’s Smart Growth in 2022

Wednesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Jackson, Tennessee Mayor Scott Conger to the newsmakers line to talk about the growth of his city and goals for 2022.

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Report: Minneapolis Carjackings Increased by More Than 289 Percent Since 2019

Cars in a parking garage at night

One Minneapolis man has taken pains to record all reported carjackings since 2020 on an interactive map.

Resident Steve Taylor created the map on Maps.co. It gives users the coordinates where each carjacking occurred, dates and times when they occurred, and even the distance between the locations of the previous and next carjackings.

Red pins indicate carjackings in 2021, while yellow pins indicate carjackings in 2020.

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Colorado Considers Dropping the Term ‘Sex Offender’ Because of ‘Negative Effects’

Seminar of "inappropriate sexual fantasy for sexual offenders"

Colorado officials are set to vote Friday on whether to drop the term “sex offender” to describe people who engaged in “sexually abusive behavior,” due to “negative effects,” the Denver Post reported.

“I think the biggest thing is research really shows us that assigning a label has the potential for negative effects in rehabilitation,” said Kimberly Kline, chair of the Sex Offender Management Board (SOMB), according to the Denver Post. The board is considering a number of other possible terms for offending individuals, including adults “who commit sexual offenses” and “who engage in sexually abusive behavior.”

“The term ‘sex offender’ will continue to be used in Colorado statute and the criminal justice system, including courts, law enforcement and the Colorado Sex Offender Registry,” a SOMB spokesperson told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “The change being considered is limited in scope and applies only to the language used in the standards and guidelines for treatment providers who assess, evaluate and treat people convicted of sexual offenses.”

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October Southern Border Encounters See 129 Percent Increase over Last Year

Crowd of immigrants

Border Patrol agents encountered 129.7% more people at the southern border this year than last, according to new data published by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

The greatest number of encounters was in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas and the greatest percentage increase was in Yuma, Arizona.

Illegal border crossings have skyrocketed since President Joe Biden took office in January.

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COVID Mandates Oust Police Officers Nationwide, Police Leaders Warn of Fallout

Back of Police officers uniform

COVID-19 vaccine mandates have sparked nationwide controversy and led to firings and resignations around the country. Police officers have been hit hard by the requirements, and their exodus may leave many cities understaffed even on the heels of a spike in violent crime.

In New York City, officers passed the mayor’s deadline for vaccination Friday. The city announced that there are 26,000 unvaccinated municipal workers, including 17% of police officers. Those who refuse to comply will be placed on unpaid leave beginning Monday.

But New York City is far from the only local government to take that route. Several municipalities have instituted vaccine mandates for police officers only to see a significant drop-off in staffing.

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Minneapolis City Council President Filed Ethics Complaint over Arradondo’s News Conference

Minneapolis Police Chief Arradondo giving remarks at a press conference

Outgoing Minneapolis City Council President Lisa Bender has filed an ethics complaint over a press conference Police Chief Medaria Arradondo held on Wednesday.

Arradondo warned residents of the consequences of approving a ballot Question 2, which, if passed, would replace the police department. The warning was made while he was standing in front of the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) logo.

Bender’s complaint says the press conference violates ethics code section 15.110, which states: “A local official, employee or candidate for elective office shall not use city facilities, property, funds, personnel, the city logo, the city seal or other city resources to engage in political activity.”

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Arizona State Rep. Jake Hoffman Asks Attorney General Brnovich for Legal Opinion on Biden Administration’s Failure at the Border

Arizona Rep. Jake Hoffman (R-Queen Creek) sent a letter to Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich requesting a legal opinion on whether the Biden administration has failed its obligations at the U.S. border with Mexico. He is concerned there is an “invasion” taking place due to the vast numbers of illegal immigrants entering the country, the increase in crime, and the control the drug cartels have over areas along the border.

He wrote, “In light of the efforts by the new federal administration of President Joe Biden to encourage, rather than discourage, illegal aliens coming to our country, including by crossing the Arizona border illegally, I am writing to ask for your formal legal opinion of whether or not the federal government has failed — intentionally or unintentionally — to uphold its obligations to protect our state from invasion under Article IV, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution.”

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Texas Republicans Sound Off On Biden’s ‘Pathetic’ Claim That He’s Too Busy to Visit the Border

Texas Republicans described President Joe Biden’s immigration policies as reckless and criticized him for claiming that he has been too busy to visit the southern border since taking office in January.

Biden said Thursday night that he “should go down [to visit the border] but the whole point of it is I haven’t had a whole hell of a lot of time to,” during a CNN town hall. The last time Biden was near the border was when he flew into an airport in El Paso, Texas, where his motorcade took him to New Mexico for a campaign event in 2008, according to The Washington Post.

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Crom Carmichael on the Gaslighting of the Consumer Class, Pfizer, and COVID Special Session

Wednesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed all-star panelist Crom Carmichael in studio to discuss the consumer class, elites, Pfizer vaccinations for children, and COVID special session.

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Impact of Unsecured Release on Georgia Crime Emphasized at Hearing

Law-enforcement professionals and judges testified at a Georgia Senate hearing Wednesday largely to consider the impact of pretrial release on violent crime in Atlanta and elsewhere, with particular scrutiny being placed on “signature bonds.”

Jeff Hamling, a representative of the Georgia Association of Professional Bondsmen (GAPB), gave the Senate Public Safety Committee a rundown of statistics pertaining to defendants who have been let out of jail under these arrangements. Signature bonds permit prosecutors and judges to release alleged offenders per a signed agreement that the defendants will report promptly for trial. Technically, these bonds have dollar amounts but they do not require defendants to deposit any cash or collateral.

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Number of Police Officers Assaulted While on Duty Skyrocketed in 2020, FBI Data Shows

Minneapolis Police Department

Violence against law enforcement officials increased dramatically in 2020, according to a Monday FBI press release. Over 60,000 assaults on law enforcement officers while in the line of duty occurred in 2020, an increase of over 4,000 from just over 56,000 on-the-job assaults in 2019, according to the press release.

Of all the officers assaulted in 2020, more than 18,500, or just over 30%, sustained injuries. Just under 44,500 assaults employed “personal weapons,” including “hands, fists, or feet,” and 25.8% of officers attacked in this manner suffered injuries.

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‘Just Unconscionable’: Parents Protest Outside the Justice Department Against ‘Domestic Terrorist’ Label

Parents protesting

Frustration at school boards boiled over for some parents and activists who protested outside of the Department of Justice building in Washington, D.C. Sunday.

A small crowd gathered for the “Parents Are Not ‘Domestic Terrorists’ Rally,” a reference to Merrick Garland’s Oct. 4 memorandum that called on the FBI to “use its authority” in response to the “disturbing spike in harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence against school administrators, board members, teachers, and staff.”

Garland’s statement followed a letter from the National School Board Association (NSBA) that asked the federal government to get involved in the alleged “immediate threat” of violence from parents against American public schools and education officials. The letter encouraged President Joe Biden’s administration to use statutes such as the USA PATRIOT Act to address actions that could be “equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes.”

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Rep. Sanfelippo: Governor Evers’ Violence Prevention Efforts Ignore Police

One state Republican lawmaker says Gov. Tony Evers’ violence prevention efforts ignore the police.

Rep. Joe Sanfelippo, R-New Berlin, on Monday said the governor has failed to support law enforcement.

“We have seen what Bash the Blue solutions have done to help combat the spread of crime – absolutely nothing. In fact, it has only made things worse. Homicides are up. Aggravated assaults are up. Motor vehicle thefts are up. Arson is up,” Sanfelippo said.

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Commentary: Virginia Likely to Reinstate Parole for Even Murderers

man in handcuffs

Senator Joe Morrissey (D-Richmond) predicts that Virginia’s senate will vote to bring back parole in 2022 — “across the board,” meaning for even the most serious crimes, such as murder. Restoring parole could increase the number of murders, rapes, and robberies in Virginia. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports:

A movement to reinstate parole in Virginia could hinge on the outcome of election results next month. Democratic gubernatorial nominee Terry McAuliffe has indicated willingness to support expanded parole….While many Democrats support reinstating parole broadly in Virginia, Republicans generally oppose it. The Democrats hold a 55-45 seat edge in the House of Delegates…the issue will be debated in next year’s General Assembly session.

“I will be introducing a bill that will reintroduce parole across the board,” said Sen. Joe Morrissey, D-Richmond. “I think it will pass [the] Senate Judiciary [Committee] and … the full body.” Democrats control the Senate 21-19. Senators are not up for election until 2023. But Morrissey said he predicts a possible roadblock to parole expansion in the House, where he thinks Republicans will make gains in the Nov. 2 election….Virginia created parole in 1942 and abolished it in 1995, passing a “truth in sentencing” law among other criminal justice measures in an effort to reduce high crime rates….

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Walgreens Closing Five Bay Area Locations Due to Spike in Shoplifting

People looting a Walgreens

The pharmaceutical chain Walgreens will be closing five stores in San Francisco, California due to a spike in “organized” shoplifting impacting its locations, according to MarketWatch via MSN.

The decision was made by Walgreens’ parent company, Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc., which will relocate all employees to new locations and ship all outstanding prescriptions to other stores within one mile of the original stores. The stores will be shut down sometime between November 8th and November 17th.

“Retail theft across our San Francisco stores has continued to increase in the past few months to five times our chain average,” the company revealed in the statement announcing the decision. “To help combat this issue, we increased our investments in security measures in stores across the city to 46 times our chain average, in an effort to provide a safe environment.”

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Georgia Senate Committee Weighs Pension Changes to Attract and Retain Troopers

A committee established this year to examine retirement security for Georgians focused on public servants’ retirement needs in a hearing Thursday, particularly those of law-enforcement officers strained by heightened crime and a hostile media.

Members of the Senate Retirement Security for Georgians Study Committee examined pension reform—specifically the potential shifting from the current 401(k) system to an entirely defined-benefit plan for state law-enforcers—to attract and retain more personnel.

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Commentary: Defund Police Movement to Blame for Record 30 Percent Surge in Murders Across America

Police advocates say the Defund the Police movement is responsible for the nearly 30 percent increase in murders in 2020, the largest single-year jump since the FBI began recording crime statistics six decades ago.

The change in murder was widespread — a national phenomenon and not a regional one. Murder rose over 35 percent in cities with populations over 250,000 that reported full data.

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Retired Sergeant Richard Valdemar of LA’s Sheriff’s Department Discusses How Things Will Get Worse with Biden in Charge

Wednesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed retired LA Sheriff Department Sergeant Richard Valdemar to the microphones to discuss the effects of illegal immigration and their involvement with cartels and gangs.

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Ryne Bolick, Son of Shawnna Bolick and Clint Bolick, Leads Arizona State University Students’ Effort to Allow Open Carry on Campus

Tyne Bolick, the son of Arizona Rep. Shawnna Bolick (R-Phoenix) and Arizona Supreme Court Justice Clint Bolick, is following in his parents’ footsteps taking an interest in politics and the law. He started a chapter of Students for Liberty at Arizona State University last year, and soon afterward the club launched a petition drive to allow open carry at Arizona’s universities. 

Bolick told The Arizona Sun Times that he saw a need for the change due to the alarming number of reports of rape, armed robbery, and other violent crimes on campus, which are emailed to students sometimes as often as once a week. It’s especially a problem on the downtown ASU campus due to the large homeless population. 

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Former Arizona Sheriff Arpaio ‘Strongly Considering’ Running for Mayor of Fountain Hills

Nationally renowned former Sheriff Joe Arpaio told The Arizona Sun Times that he is “strongly considering” running for mayor in his town of Fountain Hills, located in the greater Phoenix Valley. He was defeated for reelection as Maricopa County Sheriff in 2016, when billionaire George Soros poured $2 million into the race. Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, contributed a quarter of a million dollars.

Arpaio said he wants to elevate the profile of mayors in society, just like he elevated the profile of sheriffs by becoming the most well-known sheriff in the country in the modern era. He has lived in Fountain Hills for 21 years, and has ties to the town going back 30 years due to serving as Maricopa County Sheriff and head of the Drug Enforcement Agency for Arizona. One of his goals is to attract a significant business to move to the town. The town of about 25,000 is an affluent, Republican-leaning community.

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Justice Department Plans Action in Two Ohio Communities

U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown speaks at 2008 Labor Day Festival

The U.S. Justice Department will spend a half-million dollars to help one Ohio community two years after a mass shooting, and it announced an assessment is planned into another city’s police department.

Nine people died and dozens were wounded when a gunman opened fire in the Oregon District in Dayton a little more than two years ago. A $488,054 DOJ grant will help pay for four additional mental health counselors and related costs at two mental health facilities to help those affected by the shooting.

“We have an obligation to help our communities recover from violent crimes, abuse, and other criminal activity. I am glad the Department of Justice is providing the necessary mental health resources to help those impacted by the tragic Oregon District shooting in Dayton,” U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, said. “Families and communities that were directly or indirectly affected by this tragedy will have these additional resources at their disposal to begin healing and receive the necessary care they need to recover.”

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Commentary: New January 6 Stories That Complicate the Media Narrative

The Associated Press reported in August that Robert Reeder, a Maryland man, pleaded guilty to “parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building.” He argued for leniency because, “he is a registered Democrat who wasn’t a supporter of former President Donald Trump.” So why did he join the incursion into the Capitol building? Because, he says, he was an “accidental tourist” with nothing better to do.

But an online group that calls itself Sedition Hunters recently tweeted a picture it says shows that same “accidental tourist” attacking a police officer. Curiously, the “accidental tourist,” who didn’t support Donald Trump, happened to be wearing a red “MAGA”-style hat. His attorney argued in court, “Mr. Reeder is not politically active, is not and has never been a member of any right-wing or anti-government or extremist group and has, unfortunately, been publicly grouped with many others (whose) views he abhors.”

The story reminds one of John Sullivan, a Black Lives Matter activist who infiltrated the January 6 incursion to encourage violence, bully police officers, and generally stoke mayhem. While many of the trespassers remain locked up without bail, Sullivan mysteriously received pre-trial release.

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Brushing off Supreme Court Rulings, California County Fines Church as Commercial Enterprise

Hands praying on top of a Bible

While the state of California and multiple counties continue to settle with churches after imposing unconstitutional restrictions against them, one county is expanding its efforts to pursue damages against a church, claiming their worship services are a public nuisance.

In its latest request, filed Aug. 31, Calvary Chapel has asked the court to dismiss the public nuisance claim along with the $2.8 million in fines levied against it, arguing the county has not provided any evidence to support the accusation that the church has caused any harm to the public.

The battle between the county and the church began in late spring 2020 after the state and county encouraged residents to protest the death of George Floyd without numerical limitations or public health restrictions, even as the same authorities imposed severe constraints on houses of worship.

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Commentary: Jacob Chansley Pleads Guilty to Obstruction, Remains in Jail

Jacob Chansley, arguably the most iconic figure of the January 6 protest at the U.S. Capitol, today pleaded guilty to one count of obstruction of an official proceeding.

Chansley, 33, turned himself in to law enforcement and was arrested on January 9. A grand jury indicted Chansley two days later on six nonviolent counts including obstruction, civil disorder, and “parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building.” The remaining counts will be dropped.

Judge Royce Lamberth accepted Chansely’s plea agreement with Joe Biden’s Justice Department, which continues to arrest and charge Americans for even minor involvement in the Capitol protest. Nearly 200 defendants face the obstruction charge, a felony added to mostly misdemeanor cases. (I explained the charge here in March.)

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Advocacy Group Urges Northam to Generously Use Pardon Power

Ralph Northam

A criminal justice reform advocacy group is urging Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam to use his pardon power generously before leaving office at the end of his term in January.

Families Against Mandatory Minimums, which works to repeal mandatory minimum sentencing laws nationally, wrote a letter to Northam and asked him to grant full or partial clemency to deserving inmates who have reformed while in prison and for those who were given excessive sentences for their crimes.

A Virginia law from the 1990s prohibiting discretionary parole limits options for felons who received harsh penalties, leaving a pardon as one of the only options remaining. The state also has various mandatory minimum sentences on the books, which require a certain length of incarcerated time for specific crimes.

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Arizona Attorney General Brnovich Leads 16 States to Stop Biden’s Lack of Immigration Enforcement Related to Crime

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich led 15 other attorneys general to file an amicus curiae brief on August 30 in a lawsuit requesting to halt the Biden administration’s “Interim Guidance” policy of not enforcing laws against illegal immigration when it comes to crime. The lawsuit was filed against the Biden administration on April 6 by the attorneys general of Texas and Louisiana accusing Biden of endangering Americans by no longer arresting or deporting nearly all illegal immigrants involved in crime. Brnovich and the coalition asked the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals to deny Biden’s request for a stay of his policy while his administration appeals a trial court’s ruling halting the policy. 

“The Biden Administration continues to intentionally violate federal immigration laws and endanger all Americans,” said Brnovich in a statement. “We continue to see the release of convicted felons, COVID-19 positive migrants, and record levels of dangerous drugs into cities across our country. These reckless policies are illegal, unconscionable and disgraceful. The Biden Administration must be held accountable.”

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Man Sentenced to Six Years in Prison for Whitmer Kidnapping Plot

A man upset over Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s COVID-19 policies plead guilty to one count of a kidnapping conspiracy and accepted a plea deal to serve six years and three months in prison.

Ty Garbin, 25, is the only known member of the Michigan militia group “Wolverine Watchmen” to plead guilty to the alleged plot.

Federal prosecutors suggested he serve a nine-year sentence, citing his cooperation with authorities and plans to testify against other alleged kidnappers.

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