The IRS is promising to turn a blind eye to religious schools, colleges, and universities that continue to practice anti-gay discrimination.
The IRS has absolutely no plans or intention to take away the tax exempt status of religious schools, colleges, or universities that practice discrimination against LGBT people. IRS Commissioner John Koskinen made the commitmentÂ â€“Â surprisingÂ in the wake of the Supreme Court’s June 26 ruling that same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marriageÂ â€“ at a Senate hearing last week under examination by GOP Senator Mike Lee.
â€œWill you commit to me that while you remain on as the commissioner,” Sen. Lee, one of many Republicans calling for President Obama to fire Koskinen,Â “you will not in the absence of a directive by Congress or by the courts, take any action to remove the tax-exempt status from religious colleges and universities based on their belief that marriage is between a man and a woman?”
Commissioner Koskinen responded, “I can make that commitment.”
Conservatives and the religious right, back in April during oral arguments on marriage at the Supreme Court,Â seized on a comment made byÂ Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli when asked about religious colleges losing their tax-exempt benefits. Verrilli had said, “itâ€™s certainly going to be an issue. I donâ€™t deny that.”
According toÂ Koskinen, it will not be an issue, at the very least for years to come.
Should the federal government choose to even think about removing the tax-exempt status of religious educational institutions, the IRS and Treasury would work together and ensure public input.
“There would be no surprises. We’re not sneaking up on anybody,” KoskinenÂ promised. “The public would have plenty of notice and plenty of opportunity to comment, and that’s not going to happen in the next two and a half years,” he insisted.
Sen. Lee is pushing a bill, theÂ First Amendment Defense Act, which would ensure religious organizations are permanently protected in their choice to discriminate against LGBT people.
Image: Screenshot viaÂ senatormikelee/YouTube
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‘A Bunch of New Yorkers in Addition to George Soros’: Greg Abbott Accused of Antisemitism
Texas GOP Governor Greg Abbott is facing a challenging re-election fight against Beto O’Rourke, the popular and charismatic former U.S,. Congressman and Democratic presidential candidate who is now his party’s gubernatorial nominee.
Texas voters have had to face mismanagement of the state’s electric grid, with hundreds of Texans dying in winter after the snowstorm that sent Senator Ted Cruz to Cancun, the horrific elementary school mass shooting in Uvalde, and Abbott spending millions of taxpayer dollars on anti-immigrant programs, including bussing migrants to Democratic-controlled cities like Washington, D.C. and New York City. Not to mention his support of the vigilante abortion ban and a “Don’t Say Gay” bill, his failed promise to end rape, and the fact that Texas leads the nation in mass shootings.
But none of that has stopped the 64-year old from doubling down on his conservative bonafides.
On Wednesday over at Fox News, Abbott engaged in what many are calling some old-fashioned antisemitism.
“We will explain to our fellow Texans that the Beto campaign is being aided by a bunch of New Yorkers in addition to George Soros, and that will do nothing but harm his campaign,” Abbott told Fox News host Harris Faulkner.
Greg Abbott: “We will explain to our fellow Texans that the Beto campaign is being aided by a bunch of New Yorkers in addition to George Soros, and that will do nothing but harm his campaign.” pic.twitter.com/23O6TtLwTO
— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) August 10, 2022
George Soros, who is Jewish, is a Democratic philanthropist and one of the liberals most-hated by the right, in large part because he funds left wing causes.
He also donated $1 million to help elect O’Rourke governor.
Two weeks ago polls showed O’Rourke gaining ground, striking with five points of his entrenched Texas Republican rival.
And now Abbott is being blasted for what many are calling antisemitism over his Soros statement.
“In this context, ‘New Yorkers’ and ‘George Soros’ are both signifiers for the alleged Jewish elite who supposedly control the world. Abbott is peddling antisemitic conspiracy theory rhetoric,” says writer and human rights activist Leah McElrath.
“When they say ‘Soros’ and ‘New Yorkers,’ they mean Jews,” notes freelance writer Henry Schulman. “It’s an old dog whistle and a code all the Trump-humping Nazis and their sympathizers understand. So add a new adjective besides ‘fascist’ in front of Abbott’s name. It’s ‘anti-Semitic fascist.'”
Others were even more direct.
“Just say Jews you coward,” tweeted a columnist for The Forward, Alex גדעון בן װעלװל.
“‘The bespectacled, bagel-eating, gefilte fish-slurping, globalist intelligentsia from the Upper West Side’ is what he’s trying to say, although the specifics of who that is maddeningly unclear,” mocked Aki Pertiz, an intel and national security expert. “Also, doesn’t Soros live in NY state? Why single him out hmmmmm.”
Former Chicago Tribune editor Mark Jacob explains: “Right-wing code is pretty simple. ‘New York’ and ‘Soros’ = Jewish. ‘Chicago’ = Black people.”
Former Governor of Vermont, DNC Chair, and 2004 presidential nominee Howard Dean blasted Abbott, comparing him to the Hungarian dictator and, some say, fascist.
“Abbott has become just another GOP whack job. He sounds like victor Orban,” Dean wrote.
‘Same Answer’: Trump Sat Across From the NY Attorney General and Pleaded the Fifth to Each Question For About 5 Hours
Donald Trump arrived at the New York Attorney General’s Office early Wednesday morning, around 9 AM. At 10:04 AM posted to his Truth Social account was a lengthy statement that says, “under the advice of my counsel and for all of the above reasons, I declined to answer the questions under the rights and privileges afforded to every citizen.”
Trump was finally forced to appear after a subpoena ordering him to give a deposition on January 7 in New York Attorney General Letitia James’ investigation into his real estate pricing practices. Trump’s former attorney Michael Cohen told Congress in 2019 his former boss would increase what he claimed his properties are worth when attempting to arrange credit and decrease their value for tax purposes.
The Guardian’s Hugo Lowell reported Trump “departed 28 Liberty at 3:20pm slumped in a black Secret Service SUV and peered out of the rear window as his motorcade crawled out of an underground garage past onlookers.”
At 3:42 PM Trump posted: “Just leaving the Attorney General’s Office – A very professional meeting.”
The New York Times reports “Trump and James sat across from each other for hours as he said ‘same answer’ again and again.”
Trump “read a statement into the record in which he called the inquiry a continuation of ‘the greatest witch hunt in the history of our country’ and accused Ms. James of having ‘openly campaigned on a policy of destroying me.'”
That statement is similar to the one posted to his Truth Social account.
Trump’s attorney, Ronald P. Fischetti, “said that over the course of about four hours, with several breaks, Mr. Trump answered only one question, about his name, toward the beginning of the interview.”
That statement Trump posted Wednesday morning attempted to merge the FBI’s Monday raid on his Mar-a-Lago home with his appearance for sworn testimony in a very different case.
Dem Congressman Posts Horrific Audio of Violent Death Threat Against Him and His Family by Caller Praising ‘Trump 2024’
Democratic U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell of California on Wednesday posted audio of a violent death threat against him and his family. The Congressman is married and the couple have three children. The speaker in the audio also calls for “all Democrats” to be killed, and ends with a call for “Trump 2024.”
Swalwell is a popular target for the right. He is a former candidate for president, a very visible member of the Democratic Party, and is the Co-Chair of the House Democratic Steering Committee.
The audio is profane and gruesome. In it, a male voice can be heard hoping for decapitations of the Congressman, his wife, and their children. The language is graphic.
READ MORE: House Republicans Visited Trump After FBI Raid to Urge Him to Announce Run for President
The voice also references President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, using horrifically racist slurs, along with Back Lives Matter, immigrants, and Democrats in general.
It also attacks the state of California and Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom, and then Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.
It ends with a repeated call of “Trump 2024!”
The audio is nearly two minutes long but appears to have been edited, with at least the beginning cut off.
“LISTEN to this death threat against my children,” Swalwell urges. “Since the FBI search of Mar-a-Lago, Trump, McCarthy, and MAGA Republicans are stoking violent rhetoric against lawmakers and law enforcement. Someone is going to get killed.”
In 2019 Swalwell also posted a death threat he received. Fox News’ Tomi Lahren mocked him on social media.
NCRM has opted to not embed the audio but it can be heard here.
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