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Expanding Religious Zeal, John Boehner Invites Pope Francis To Address Congress

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Perhaps it should come as no surprise that yesterday, John Boehner extended a formal invitation to the leader of his Roman Catholic faith, Pope Francis I, to address a joint session of Congress.

Speaker of the House Boehner keeps his cards tightly held and his personal beliefs even closer. But sometimes Boehner’s religious agenda is exposed, like in 2012, when he hired one of the most influential anti-gay activists in America, Robert P. George, to join the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). Commissioners at the USCIRF are government employees, and hold their posts for two years.

Dr. George, of course, is the co-founder of the National Organization For Marriage (NOM), and is a co-author of the Manhattan Declaration, which has been signed by Christian Evangelical leaders who promise “resistance to the point of civil disobedience against any legislation that might implicate their churches or charities in abortion, embryo-destructive research or same-sex marriage.”

“This commission has a unique opportunity to call attention to efforts that threaten religious liberty around the globe,” Speaker Boehner said via a press release. “Dr. George is a respected and leading voice for religious freedom, and I’m pleased that he will bring his passion for this issue and legal expertise to the commission. No person should live in fear of persecution for worshipping as they see fit or be forced by government mandate to disavow or compromise their faith.  He will be a great resource in the House’s effort to defend this fundamental human right.”

Boehner revealed his agenda for inviting the Pope in a statement he later released.

Pope Francis’ “tireless call for the protection of the most vulnerable among us—the ailing, the disadvantaged, the unemployed, the impoverished, the unborn—has awakened hearts on every continent,” Boehner’s statement reads.

Applauding the Pope’s “social teachings, rooted in ‘the joy of the gospel,’” Boehner aligned himself with “those who champion human dignity, freedom, and social justice.”

“These principles are among the fundamentals of the American Idea. And though our nation sometimes fails to live up to these principles, at our best we give them new life as we seek the common good. Many in the United States believe these principles are undermined by ‘crony capitalism’ and the ongoing centralization of political power in the institutions of our federal government, which threaten to disrupt the delicate balance between the twin virtues of subsidiarity and solidarity. They have embraced Pope Francis’ reminder that we cannot meet our responsibility to the poor with a welfare mentality based on business calculations. We can meet it only with personal charity on the one hand and sound, inclusive policies on the other.”

The hypocrisy is breathtaking.

To repeat:

“Many in the United States,” Boehner said, “have embraced Pope Francis’ reminder that we cannot meet our responsibility to the poor with a welfare mentality based on business calculations. We can meet it only with personal charity on the one hand and sound, inclusive policies on the other.”

Do those “inclusive policies” include the Republican agenda to deny health care, welfare, food stamps, unemployment insurance payments, domestic violence protections, and so many other responsibilities, to the neediest among us?

The hypocrisy is staggering.

Perhaps the Pope will take Boehner aside and have a very necessary “come to Jesus” talk with him.

Read Boehner’s letter to the Pope:

3-13-14 Speaker Invitation to Pope Francis – Joint Meeting

//www.scribd.com/embeds/212454847/content?start_page=1&view_mode=scroll&show_recommendations=true

 

Image: Speaker of the House John Boehner speaking at the Family Research Council-sponsored Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C. in 2011. Photo by Gage Skidmore via Flickr.

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Speaker Johnson on Why He Thinks Hunter Biden’s Conviction Is Valid but Donald Trump’s Is Not

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Speaker of the House Mike Johnson, who could gain tremendous power if Donald Trump is elected president in November, explained to reporters his belief that Tuesday’s jury conviction of Hunter Biden on three federal felony gun charges was absolutely legitimate while Donald Trump’s conviction on 34 state felony charges was not.

“Every case is different,” Johnson told CNN’s Manu Raju (video below) when asked if “the president’s son being convicted on three counts” undercuts the Republican Speaker’s claims of a “two tier system of justice.”

Johnson added, “clearly the evidence was overwhelming” in the Hunter Biden prosecution, one which some legal experts said should not have been brought and at least one member of the jury who spoke to CNN said was a waste of the taxpayers’ dime.

“I don’t think that’s the case in the Trump trials, and all the charges that have been brought” against Trump “have been obviously brought for political purposes. Hunter Biden is a separate instance.”

READ MORE: Secret Audio of Justice Alito’s Wife Exposes His Plans and Her ‘Bitterness’: Critics

U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) issued a strong response to the Johnson’s claims.

“We should be very very worried that Republicans are so brazen in their belief that convictions of Democrats are fine but convictions of Republicans are illegitimate. This is a political party TELLING US OUT LOUD that they plan to use the justice system to persecute opponents.”

Speaker Johnson and Senate Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and members from both their GOP conferences will be meeting with Donald Trump on Thursday, reportedly to create a gameplay to pass major right-wing legislation if the convicted ex-president wins back the White House on November, NBC News reports.

Watch below or at this link.

 

 

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Trump Insists No Mandatory Military Draft Advisers Have Been Planning

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Presumptive 2024 Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump slapped down a report revealing his top advisors, including former high-ranking administration officials working on Project 2025, want to reinstate the mandatory military draft.

“Influential figures in Donald Trump’s orbit, including his former acting defense secretary, have proposed making military service mandatory,” The Washington Post reported Tuesday in a morning brief. “Christopher Miller, the former acting secretary of the Defense Department, shared his pitch for a national service mandate in Project 2025, the outline for a second Trump term prepared by the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank.”

In an expanded report, The Washington Post revealed if Trump is elected and if Miller becomes his Secretary of Defense, high school students across the country could be required to take a military assessment, “the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery, a standardized test developed by the Defense Department decades ago to help the military funnel recruits into occupations that match their skills and intellect.”

In an interview with the Post, Miller “detailed his vision for the ASVAB and a range of other changes as part of Project 2025, the conservative Heritage Foundation’s aspirational government-wide game plan should the presumptive Republican nominee return to the White House. Though Trump has not publicly endorsed its policy proposals, Miller is among a cluster of influential former administration officials and GOP lawmakers who have mused aloud about a national service mandate and other measures to remedy what they see as a ‘crisis’ facing the all-volunteer military.”

READ MORE: ‘False’ and ‘Irresponsible’: DOJ Smacks Down Jim Jordan’s ‘Conspiracy’ in Sharp Letter

“Miller said a national service requirement should be ‘strongly considered.’ He described the concept as a common ‘rite of passage,’ one that would create a sense of ‘shared sacrifice’ among America’s youth.”

Despite the facts, Trump blasted The Washington Post and its report.

“The Fake News Washington Post came up with the ridiculous idea that Donald J. Trump will call for Mandatory Military Service,” the ex-president and now convicted felon wrote on his Truth Social platform. “This is only a continuation of their EIGHT YEAR failed attempt to damage me with the Voters. The Story is completely untrue. In fact, I never even thought of that idea. Only a degenerate former Newspaper, which has lost 50% of its Readers, would fabricate such a tale. Just another Fake Story, one of many, made up by the DEAD Washington Compost!”

It’s unclear if by “DEAD” Trump was referring to The Post’s official slogan, “Democracy Dies in Darkness,” instituted the same year he became president.

The concept of “national service” is far from new, but the United States has not ever had mandatory military service, where everyone of a certain age was required to serve. Up until 1973 America still had the draft, before transitioning to an all-volunteer military.

President Barack Obama expanded opportunities for Americans to serve in non-military agencies, including AmeriCorps, FEMA Corps, and School Turnaround AmeriCorps.

Trump has kept his distance publicly away from Agenda 2025, but some experts believe should he be elected in November, that massive project, including its 920 manual, could easily become the national policy of the Trump administration.

The Biden administration has been campaigning against Project 2025.

Watch the video below or at this link.

READ MORE: Secret Audio of Justice Alito’s Wife Exposes His Plans and Her ‘Bitterness’: Critics

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‘False’ and ‘Irresponsible’: DOJ Smacks Down Jim Jordan’s ‘Conspiracy’ in Sharp Letter

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Calling Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan’s allegations “speculation,” “conspiratorial speculation,” “unfounded,” “baseless,” “irresponsible,” and “false,” the U.S. Dept. of Justice in a strongly-worded and trenchant letter smacked down the House Republican’s suggestion the New York State criminal prosecution of Donald Trump was a project of the Biden administration.

Assistant Attorney General Carlos Felipe Uriarte from the DOJ Office of Legislative Affairs writes that Jordan’s Judiciary Committee “has demanded information from the Department because of what you describe as a ‘perception that the Justice Department is’ behind the District Attorney’s so-called ‘politicized prosecution’ and a ‘perception that the Biden Justice Department is politicized and weaponized’ to that end.” [Italicized words original to DOJ document.]

“The Department does not generally make extensive efforts to rebut conspiratorial speculation, including to avoid the risk of lending it credibility. However, consistent with the Attorney General’s commitment to transparency, the Department has taken extraordinary steps to confirm what was already clear: there is no basis for these false claims.”

READ MORE: Secret Audio of Justice Alito’s Wife Exposes His Plans and Her ‘Bitterness’: Critics

Describing their “comprehensive search for email communications … between any officials in Department leadership, including all political appointees in those offices, and the District Attorney’s office regarding any investigation or prosecution of the former President,” Uriarte says:

“We found none. This is unsurprising. The District Attorney’s office is a separate entity from the Department. The
Department does not supervise the work of the District Attorney’s office, does not approve its charging decisions, and does not try its cases. The Department has no control over the District Attorney, just as the District Attorney has no control over the Department. The Committee knows this.”

Continuing his remarks, Uriarte also notes that despite finding no emails Jordan demanded, “information-sharing between a U.S. Attorney’s Office and local prosecutors is standard and happens every day all over the country.”

And he issues a warning:

“The self-justifying ‘perception’ asserted by the Committee is completely baseless, but the Committee continues to traffic it widely. As the Attorney General stated at his hearing, the conspiracy theory that the recent jury verdict in New York state court was somehow controlled by the Department is not only false, it is irresponsible. Indeed, accusations of wrongdoing made without—and in fact contrary to—evidence undermine confidence in the justice system and have contributed to increased threats of violence and attacks on career law enforcement officials and prosecutors.”

“Our extraordinary efforts to respond to your speculation should put it to rest.”

ABC News adds that “last week, Attorney General Merrick Garland repeatedly rebuked the allegations as baseless and dangerous, pointing to an uptick in threats department officials have seen directly stemming from such conspiracy theories.”

READ MORE: Many Republicans Don’t Believe Trump Was Indicted or Aren’t Sure – But Say He’s Not Guilty

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