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2+2=5? Rep. Vicky Hartzler Calls Out Big Brother

by Jaime Christley

February 23, 2022

Winston is tied up on the table—the police have arrested him for thinking his own thoughts. His interrogator stands above him, holding up four fingers. Winston cries out in agony:

How can I help seeing what is in front of my eyes? Two and two are four.”

Sometimes, Winston. Sometimes they are five. Sometimes they are three. Sometimes they are all of them at once. You must try harder. It is not easy to become sane.”

This scene within George Orwell’s dystopian novel 1984 is uncomfortably close to a situation that is playing out in today’s society. Two decades ago, it was commonly acknowledged that men could not become women and vice versa. Now, radical gender identity ideology has taken root in our schools and the broader culture, telling us that “Sometimes, biological men can be women.”

A recent campaign ad put out by Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.) objected to Lia Thomas, a biologically male swimmer who identifies as a woman, being allowed to compete in women’s meets, where Thomas has been dominating the female competition. Hartzler stated in the ad, “Women’s sports are for women, not men pretending to be women.” Hartzler, who is running in the GOP primary to replace outgoing Missouri senator Roy Blunt, was subsequently accused of “transphobia” by progressives.

Since when did it become wrong to demand equality in women’s sports?

Over the past several decades, the far Left has entrenched itself in many areas of cultural and civic life, including academia, public schools and libraries, mainstream media, the arts, corporate America, and more. As a result, progressive ideologies have gained enormous influence over the American people.

For example, attitudes toward same-sex marriage have changed drastically in recent years. In 2004, only 31 percent of Americans supported same-sex marriage, according to Pew Research. Now, 18 years later, the numbers have flip-flopped. A 2019 study by Pew shows that only 31 percent of Americans oppose same-sex marriage.

As the general populations’ views towards LGBTQ+ identities have changed, so too have the attitudes of conservatives and Christians. Today, it’s not uncommon to have LGBTQ+ proponents campaigning to conservatives. We’ve seen a transgender gubernatorial candidate running on a Republican platform and openly gay leaders speak at conservative student conferences.

How has progressive ideology crept into conservative circles? Many have begun to say, “Well, as long as they aren’t doing anything that affects me, and they aren’t hurting anyone, I don’t care what they do.” This is now the response given to everything from same-sex marriage to gender transitions procedures performed on children—the list only gets longer as the LGBTQ+ ideology seeps into every corner of our society.

Conservatives have become so accustomed to the far Left screaming that “Two plus two equals five,” they are often afraid to even whisper the truth: “Two plus two equals four.” They remain silent, fearing the loss of their jobs, careers, or reputation. And it is the next generation that will ultimately pay the price.

The far Left is canceling those who dare to challenge their gender identity ideology. They are seducing many conservatives and Christians into thinking, “If only I acquiesce to their demands, they’ll leave me alone, and I can go about preaching, teaching, and working.” But those who think such thoughts are sorely mistaken.

Gender identity ideology was not openly celebrated in the public square until relatively recently. What began as a cultural undercurrent has descended into a raging river, with a drag queen guest on a popular children’s show, biological men being crowned victors of women’s sporting competitions, children undergoing experimental and life-altering gender transition procedures, and even the assertion that men can get pregnant.

When conservatives and Christians say nothing for fear of being “too political” or being “canceled,” it becomes a silent endorsement of the gender identity status quo. If we are going to change what is happening in our country, we must take meaningful action.

We should follow Rep. Hartzler’s good example. Instead of accepting a biological man defeating hardworking female athletes, we should stand our ground and boldly say, “Two plus two equals four.”

There are practical ways we can take action to protect the education of future generations. We need concerned citizens to run for school board and urge that our children’s schooling be based on truth, not partisan ideology. We need more churches to start schools and teach future generations that God created humans male and female and declared it very good (Gen. 1:27, 31). We need more Bible-believing leaders to run for public office and help craft good public policy.

We can also take initiative on an interpersonal level. We must begin having conversations with others one-on-one. Just as progressives started by inserting their ideology into the conversation in the public square, conservatives and Christians can peaceably start conversations that could change hearts and minds and help lead society toward truth. Both in meetings with our friends and in our churches, we shouldn’t be afraid to discuss difficult topics.

One thing every Christian can do today is pray for our nation, our leaders, and the next generation. As the prophet Ezra wrote in 2 Chronicles 7:14: “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” The Lord can bring healing to our nation. We should ask Him.

It’s time for us to draw a line in the sand. In Orwell’s 1984, Big Brother had taken captive everyone’s thoughts through continual small lies. To uphold biblical truth, we need to start speaking the truth and deny that two plus two equals five.

Jaime Christley is an intern for FRC Action.

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The Vital Importance of Local Elections

by Amanda Magoteaux

November 1, 2021

You know those signs for politicians you’ve never heard of by the highway or in your neighborhood? Believe it or not, for Christians, these are some of the most important officials we must pray, vote, and stand for. While most of the headlines of the mainstream media are often dominated by politicians at the federal level, the majority of laws and ordinances affecting our values happen at the state and local level.

Many states leave a good majority of daily operations and ordinances up to local governments through “home rule,” allowed by either their state constitution or legal provision. Essentially, it means that states have very limited, delegated powers, while the rest are left up to chartered municipalities or counties. Only three states in America do not have some form of home rule, with the majority of states delegating most of the decision-making to the local level. However, even in those states without home rule, local governments are given specific, delegated legislative authorities they must fulfill.

According to the Brookings Institute, state and local officials can have a much more prominent role in decision-making since nearly two-thirds of total federal expenditures (or approximately $2.86 trillion out of $4.3 trillion) are transfers to either individuals, state governments, or local governments. Additionally, multiple states gave about $1.5 trillion directly to their local governments for a grand total of approximately $4.36 trillion dollars in taxpayer funds solely under local control. Thus, local officials are making the majority of key investment decisions in your community regarding infrastructure, education, and yes—community values.

For example, there are county commissioners in numerous states, such as Ohio, Michigan, and others, documented as directly using taxpayer dollars to fund Planned Parenthood. Due to this support, Planned Parenthood now has advocacy arms in most states, and they’ve sent out press releases on their 2021 endorsements for county commissioners, city council members, and mayors’ races.

On the other end of the spectrum, just last week, the city council of Mason, Ohio voted 4-3 to approve an ordinance making their city the 41st “Sanctuary City for the Unborn.” Essentially, this ordinance does not prohibit any particular type of medical practice from opening in Mason. However, it does make carrying out, obtaining, providing transportation for, coercing a woman into, or providing money for an abortion anywhere in its city limits completely illegal.

For those with school-age children, local school board elections this November are of utmost importance. Many states vest the greatest power over children’s public-school education in local school board officials. In these states, their Department of Education can only recommend regulations in the schools—not demand. As such, activists that find themselves elected to school boards have done such things as get into contracts with Planned Parenthood for sex education in schools.

Additionally, parents have fought against LGBTQ+ indoctrination in their children’s classrooms, only to have an elected school board deny their children exemptions from these harmful lessons. In some schools, this agenda is being taught as early as kindergarten by using subtle language such as the “gender-bread man” or the “gender unicorn.” These tools are meant to cause children to question their biological sex (instead of affirming their God-given biological sex) and expose children to sexually explicit material at an age when their innocence should be protected.

Unfortunately, according to the U.S. Department of Justice, only 27 percent of eligible voters nationwide vote in the typical municipal election. So, while the federal politicians may grab headlines, the most impactful place to pray, vote, and stand is right in your own community this November 2nd.

Amanda Magoteaux interned for State and Local Affairs at Family Research Council.

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The Failure of AG Mark Herring to Keep Virginia Students Safe

by Meg Kilgannon

November 1, 2021

Did Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring start a chain of events that led to the eventual rape of a Loudoun County girl in the school bathroom by a gender fluid student and the sexual assault of another girl by the same student? What is the Virginia attorney general doing to keep students safe from sexual assault in schools? Let’s review some facts and find out.

 The lenient Commonwealth’s attorney in Loudoun allowed the perpetrator to return to school. But she chose to prosecute and seek jail time for the father of the victim, who was arrested after liberal activists provoked an altercation in the now infamous June 22 school board meeting. On June 23, Herring’s top priority was advocating for the passage of the so-called Equality Act, which would federally mandate  policies like the ones in question in schools across the country.

In fact, he even put out a statement defending Virginia’s model “transgender” policy, saying on June 27:

Every single child who goes to school in the Commonwealth deserves a positive, safe, nurturing learning environment, without the fear of discrimination or harassment simply because of who they are. We must do all we can to ensure that transgender, nonbinary, and gender nonconforming students feel supported and protected and this model policy gives school divisions the roadmap to doing just that in their schools. I am incredibly proud of the work my team did defending Virginia’s model policy for transgender students and I hope that today’s win shows young people all over the Commonwealth that they will be supported here.

So much for the girls in Virginia’s schools who are worried about their safety and privacy.

Even though parents and others–including five former attorneys general—have called for an investigation into the horrible situation in Loudoun County, Herring—who is up for re-election—has yet to intervene.

Herring filed amicus briefs to stop efforts that would protect women’s sports in Idaho. Additionally, he has done nothing to help Arkansas’ attorney general fight the dangerous trend of children under 18 medically or surgically altering their bodies. Herring has advocated for biological men to have access to women’s shelters. But on the issue of children being raped in Virginia school bathrooms, we hear little.

Herring hasn’t always kept quiet on school policy. He issued an opinion in March of 2015 allowing sexual orientation and gender identity to be added to school nondiscrimination policies in Virginia. This controversial opinion, issued before the Obama administration’s Dear Colleague letter on the same topic, was pivotal in schools across Virginia opening school bathrooms and locker rooms to students of the opposite sex.

The opinion was used in Fairfax County, Virginia in 2015 to justify policy changes that parents knew would place students’ health and safety in jeopardy. Despite parent backlash over the change, the school board pursued or endorsed efforts to elevate gender ideology in school curricula, sex education, and sports.

And very recently, Loudoun County Public Schools have followed suit, adopting a “transgender” policy that places those students and all students in danger. School board members in Loudoun County seem to have hidden information about the bathroom incident in order to pass policy 8040. Teachers are suing the county over the policy. Parents continue to attend meeting after meeting, lining up to voice their concerns to the school board that passed the policy over their objections. Concerns about Critical Race Theory and social and emotional learning are also on parents’ minds.

Despite the efforts of parents and community leaders opposed to the measures taken by the school board, a tragic sexual assault has taken place in a girls’ bathroom at a Loudoun County high school. Yet, no investigation has been launched by Virginia’s attorney general.

Herring’s tenure in Virginia has meant support for open borders and court filings opposing measures designed to protect innocent human life in the womb. The advancement of the LGBTQ agenda is another priority for Herring. Christian conservatives have little to like about Mark Herring’s record as Virginia attorney general. Will Virginia see her way to changing the guard next week? Students across the state are waiting and watching.

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The Final 2020 Election Results Show that Despite a Divided Nation, Social Conservatives Won Big

by Connor Semelsberger

February 19, 2021

The 2020 election cycle has finally come to a close with Anthony Brindisi conceding his loss to Claudia Tenney in the contentious race to represent New York’s 22nd Congressional District. Claudia Tenney now reclaims the seat she held in Congress from 2017-2018 by a mere 109 votes. This close election victory is the cherry on top for what now appears to be the narrowest election results in recent history.

In 2020, Democrats won the presidency, U.S. Senate, and U.S. House, taking back full control of the federal government only four years after Republicans did the same thing in 2016. This last election cycle showed just how divided the nation is, as The Washington Post recently reported that only 90,000 votes nationwide separated the current Democratic controlled federal government from one that is completely controlled by Republicans.

Tenney’s victory adds to the already strengthened Republican minority in the House of Representatives. Not only does this narrow the Democrat majority even further, but Tenney now adds to the record setting number of female Republican Members of Congress. There are now 30 female Republicans in the House, breaking the previous record of 25.

In the 2020 elections, Republicans had been elected to 213 House seats, however the tragic passing of Luke Letlow (LA-5) and Ron Wright (TX-6) has left two of those seats vacant. Democrats also have three potential vacancies due to Cedrick Richmond (LA-2), Deb Haaland, (NM-1), and Marcia Fudge (OH-11) all being nominated to positions in the Biden administration. These changes make the current Democratic House majority a slim 219-211 split. 

In the Senate, Democrats have an even narrower majority working with a 50-50 Senate that is controlled by Democrats since Vice President Kamala Harris serves as the President of the Senate and has the authority to break ties. The 50-50 Senate split was made possible by the narrow victories of Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock in the Georgia runoff elections in January.

The good news is that those elected officials who fight for faith, family, and freedom won big this election. One hundred six of the 117 House candidates endorsed by FRC Action won—that’s a 91 percent success rate. Even better, all 74 of the incumbent House members that scored a 100 percent on the FRC Action Scorecard won re-election. Champions of social values saw similar success in the Senate as 15 of the 18 senators with perfect scores on our scorecard won re-election and over 75 percent of the candidates endorsed won their race. While elections overall were the closest they have been in years, those candidates that were willing to stand up for life, family, and religious freedom won handily.

The 2020 elections have led to the smallest governing majority for Democrats since Woodrow Wilson was president in 1917! A mere six votes (five in the House and one in the Senate) now make the difference between Democrats passing their radical liberal agenda or not. It may seem like discouraging times when one party controls so much of the federal government, but the 2020 election results demonstrate clearly that all votes matter. Whether it’s one vote in the Senate to stop a $1.9 trillion COVID relief package from funding abortion businesses, or one vote in an Iowa congressional race that was decided by six, we must continue to Pray, Vote, and Stand.

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5 Actions Steps for Christians Following the 2020 Election

by Chris Curry

February 4, 2021

Frustration continues to rank high for many conservatives and Christians following this last election cycle. With so many conflicting messages, people are at a loss for how to proceed in this new reality where the truth is more difficult to identify and discern. We know changes are needed in our election process, but there are many questions about how we can individually affect change. The reality is that the more Christians engage, the more significantly we will impact future outcomes. If guided by God, we can participate in the beginnings of something remarkable over the next couple of years. Here are five areas where we can individually and collectively make a difference:

1. We need to work in our home states to clean up the election process.

Under the Constitution, state legislatures are responsible for developing laws regarding elections. In our republic, officeholders serve under the consent of the governed; that’s us.

Presently, Republicans control most state legislatures, but some need our help to do the right thing. We can work with legislators to rid states of easily manipulated voting systems and then promote in-person paper ballots with stringent photo and signature verification. Regarding absentee ballots, the best practices include signature verification from a notary public.

Finally, we can serve as election judges and encourage laws that require multiple people of different political parties to monitor the counting of every ballot.

2. As Christians, we must know and understand the Bible and what God says on issues.

Perhaps the biggest reason we are in today’s situation is because of biblical illiteracy. We hear about rendering unto Caesar and God accordingly and seem to conclude that we should compartmentalize our faith from culture. Meanwhile, we ignore biblical characters like Moses, Nathan, Daniel, John the Baptist, and Paul, who stood against political figures and counseled them.

Too many Christians subscribe to a religion based more on emotion than the truth, but our God is both emotional and rational. Long-term relationships endure when we know the heart and mind of the other person. Relationships based on emotional infatuation are fleeting. When our emotions and intellects are rooted in deep biblical understanding, our minds will keep things in check when someone presents a counterfeit message. To know the mind of God, we must understand the word of God.

3. We need to engage through our local churches in a winsome and loving manner.

Significant numbers of congregational members do not believe abortion, same-sex marriage, or even homosexual activities are contrary to biblical teaching. And if they do recognize the concern, they don’t want us to talk about those issues.

The problem with this is that when we come to Christ, he changes us; we become more like him. Romans 12:2 tells us, “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Too many people are inclined to allow their sympathy for a friend’s struggle with sin to supersede their belief in God’s ability to deliver them from that sin. When we communicate Christ’s redemption without repentance, we do a grave disservice.

In churches, well-meaning people claim “you can’t legislate morality” but fail to acknowledge that every law, from speed limits to murder prohibitions, is rooted in a collective moral code. When confronted with this rationale, they explain that it’s wrong to force the Bible on others but then fail to recognize that our Founders believed our Constitution would only work for a people who first subscribed to biblical truth and its teachings.

When we work with our church leaders and members, we can better help them identify false teachings.

4. We must know our Constitution and the writings of the Founders.

I contend that the second-biggest reason our country is in its present state is because we don’t know what our Founders said and believed. No words crafted by man, used in the birth of a nation, can compare to our Constitution and other founding documents. If we read and study the Declaration of Independence, the Federalist Papers, the Constitution, and other writings by our Founders, we will conclude they believed in God. We will also understand that most of them had a deep abiding Christian faith.

5. We need to encourage good Christians to run for office, be it school boards, city councils, mayor, county, state, and federal offices.

Then we need to turn out in mass to support them. Maybe you need to run for one of these positions. We must be diligent, though, because many of these elections do not follow the same calendar as Presidential and U.S. Congressional elections.

We didn’t arrive at this point overnight but through the long erosion that occurred while we lazily took our eye off the country and played. If we are to emerge from this, we must be diligent, tenacious, and hold to the truth while being guided by the Holy Spirit. It will not be comfortable; it will not be easy. We will face opposition in areas never suspected.

We need to continue following 2 Chronicles 7:14 as we seek individual and collective forgiveness from God. If our republic is to continue, revival must happen first among those who call on the name of Christ. If Christians genuinely repent and remain faithful to God’s calling and participation in his Great Commission, revival may then spread beyond his church and into a great awakening across this land.

Do not be discouraged. Do not disengage. If breath fills our lungs, God has more work for us to complete that will benefit ours and succeeding generations. We must stand and be counted before God and man as we accomplish the tasks at hand. As Nehemiah sought to do in his day, we have a wall to rebuild, and watchmen are needed to stand guard upon it.

Chris Curry is the Director of Broadcast Relations at Family Research Council.

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For Every Election, There Is Usually an Equal and Opposite Re-Election

by Matt Carpenter

February 3, 2021

With Democrat control in both chambers of Congress and the White House, our country is bracing for a full-on radical leftist offensive in our federal government. Religious freedom and protections for the unborn and the family will come under assault by an unchecked liberal order in our nation’s capital—for at least the next two years, that is, until the midterm elections in 2022 when Americans can choose new members of Congress to weaken this liberal government.

There is no doubt our federal government will certainly implement new policies, rescind previous policies, and fund projects antithetical to the values we hold dear. Despite this, we must remember we can moderate this radicalism in our federal government by voting for candidates at the state and local level that affirm our biblical values. Every vote matters.

When the federal government goes off the rails and embraces radical leftism, as it did in 2008 after the election of Barack Obama and the reelection of a Democrat Congress, it is the states that wind up being a bulwark against the total top-to-bottom saturation of leftist policy in American life. Even the left-wing website Vox, noticing the sharp increase in pro-life laws at the state-level, had to admit as much in 2015, writing:

Abortion rights activists have long cheered Barack Obama’s presidency as a “historic victory for women’s health.” But the reality has been rather different. Since 2010, getting an abortion in America has become significantly harder.

States passed a record 205 abortion restrictions between 2011 and 2013, more than the entire 30 years prior. As a result, many abortion providers are closing down. One survey, from pro-life group Operation Rescue, estimates that 87 separate locations ceased to perform surgical abortions in 2013. These changes are a clear result of pro-life mobilization in the Obama era.

You’ve no doubt heard of Isaac Newton’s “Third Law of Motion”: “for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” When pro-abortion, anti-religious freedom, and anti-family forces assume control of our federal government, there is a necessary reaction. In electoral terms, this means states with pro-life, pro-family, pro-faith majorities and governors can and will act—as we saw following the 2010 midterms. Your vote matters. Up and down the ticket, you have an opportunity to elect candidates who will either harm or advance biblical values at the federal or state level.

In state legislatures, every vote really matters. Sometimes, just a handful of votes can separate the winner and loser. Just ask Virginia Delegate David Yancey, a Republican, who in 2019 won a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates by having his name pulled out of a ceramic bowl. His opponent had originally “won” with one vote, but after a three-judge panel weighed in, the race became a tie—which, in Virginia law, triggers pulling a candidate’s name out of a bowl. Yancey’s name was pulled out of the bowl, and the GOP retained a slim 51-49 control of the state house.

According to Ballotpedia, in the most recent 2020 elections, there were 30 state legislative seats determined by 100 votes or less—of which, 15 went to the incumbent, 13 to the GOP candidate, and just two to the Democrat candidate. These candidates will impact policy in the short term, and potentially, could go on to higher office at the state or federal level. Winning state legislative seats now is imperative for winning federal (or statewide) seats in the future.

In 2018, Ballotpedia noted that 88 state legislative seats were determined by 0.5 percent or less of the vote. Values voters should be aware of who represents them not just in the White House and in Congress, but also at the state level. If you live in a district where a candidate who opposes your values represents you in your state capitol, and that candidate was one of the 88 who won by 0.5 percent or less in 2018, your vote could be determinative of whether or not they return to the state capitol to harm the values you hold dear.

If you are feeling discouraged by the results of the presidential contest and the two Georgia run-off elections, you should remain optimistic that state legislatures provide a real opportunity to temper the extremism of our national government. Your vote matters, up and down the ballot. While Congress and the White House may pose challenges to our biblical values in the short term, we can be optimistic that state legislatures will provide a necessary opposition to the complete metastasizing of leftism immediately and provide a bench of possible alternative members of Congress for the future.

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Are U.S. Senate Candidate Rev. Warnock’s Views Consistent with the Bible?

by FRC Action

December 4, 2020

As the dust begins to settle after the 2020 election, control of the Senate is still up in the air. How? In Georgia, there is a special run-off election scheduled for January 5th which will decide which two candidates will represent the state in the Senate. These two seats will determine which party or ideological agenda will control the Senate for the next two years.

As of right now, come January 2021, Republicans will hold 50 seats in the Senate while Democrats will hold 46 seats. Since there are two seats held by Independents who caucus with the Democrats (former presidential hopeful Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and Maine Senator Angus King), in terms of ideological divide, the Senate could be split 50/50 if Democrats win both of the Georgia Senate seats still up for grabs. In the case of a 50/50 split in the Senate, the Vice President becomes the tie-breaking vote. If Kamala Harris is our VP, it is clear she would align herself with her former Senate caucus, the Democrats.

Clearly, these two special run-off elections are crucial and everybody has their eyes on Georgia as 2020 comes to a close. One of the candidates running for a Georgia Senate seat is Reverend Raphael Warnock, current Pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church, which is well-known as being previously pastored by civil rights hero Martin Luther King Jr. Although Rev. Warnock is a pastor, it does not mean Christians should support him in the voting booth.

For one, Rev. Warnock received his M. Div and additional Doctoral degrees from Union Theological Seminary. Union is a prominent, theologically liberal seminary that made news in recent years by conducting chapel services where students confess and apologize to plants for harming them and worship ice as a “brother.” In addition to his concerning theological training, his campaign and election promises are fundamentally at odds with the teachings of the Bible.

For example, he fully supports abortion in all circumstances and has been endorsed by NARAL and Planned Parenthood. Per his campaign website, he promises, if elected, to oppose any attempt to defund Planned Parenthood and that he will support Roe v. Wade as well as judicial nominees who support it. In an interview, he went so far as to say that abortion and the support of it is “consistent” with his faith. When asked if abortion is consistent with God’s view and endorsed by God, he responded that “human agency and freedom is consistent” with his views. While God certainly created humans with free will, the Bible is very clear that the intended and proper use of human autonomy is to obey and glorify God. In fact, Paul and Peter both wrote about this topic in their respective epistles. In Galatians 5:13, Paul writes, “You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh.” Likewise, in 1 Peter 2:16, Peter writes, “live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God’s slaves.”

Another way Rev. Warnock’s views diverge from the Bible is in regards to the topic of marriage and sexuality. On his campaign website, he promises to vote in support of the Equality Act and explicitly states his support of the LGBTQ agenda. He has argued that the concept of religious freedom is often no more than “a thinly veiled means to codify anti-LGBTQ+” views and legislation. He claims that Christians who oppose the LGBTQ agenda “abuse the name of God” and “present a false choice between religious freedom and LGBTQ people.” While Christians are supposed to love everyone, we cannot condone what the Lord calls sin. The choice between religious freedom and LGBTQ people is not a false choice as Warnock claims it is, especially when it comes to the Equality Act which elevates the rights of LGBTQ people over and above the right of Christians and other religious people to live according to their faith. 

As Christians, we must be vigilant in evaluating all claims, arguments, political candidates, and their platforms against the Word of God. The label of “Christian” or “Pastor” is not enough to guarantee that something or someone is speaking the truth. Let us pray to God for wisdom and devote ourselves to studying and meditating on the Bible, so that we may know what God says, discern what is good and true, and live accordingly.

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Conservative Values Won Big Across America, Except in Contested Swing States

by Connor Semelsberger

November 20, 2020

The 2020 election revealed many interesting trends. Most notably, it revealed a number of unexpected conservative victories in federal and state elections. From the suburbs of Miami, Los Angeles, and Cincinnati to key races in Iowa and Montana, Republicans held onto key seats or made substantial gains despite millions of dollars in spending by Democrats. Yet despite these positive results, with ample opportunity to win similar races in Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Nevada, Republicans came up short in these states. What explains this?

One of the biggest headlines from the 2020 election was President Donald Trump’s increased number of votes in major urban areas across the country, including substantial gains among the Latino community, especially in Florida. President Trump improved his percentage of the vote from 2016 in Chicago, Cleveland, Buffalo, Toledo, and even Portland and Seattle. These gains propelled President Trump to capturing north of 73 million votes nationwide, even beating President Obama’s record-setting popular vote total in 2008.

Republican candidates down ballot also had several major victories: 

  • Florida – Republicans flipped two U.S. House seats and made gains in the state legislature.
  • Iowa – Joni Ernst won her tightly contested Senate race and Republicans picked up one and potentially two U.S. House seats.
  • New Hampshire – Republicans lost competitive U.S. House races but flipped both state legislative chambers.
  • Montana – Republicans held onto the U.S. Senate and House seats and flipped the Governorship.
  • Texas – John Cornyn won his Senate race, and Republicans kept control of both state legislative chambers despite aggressive Democrat challenges.
  • California and New York – Republicans have flipped at least one seat in each state and are on track to take back several more.

Republicans outperformed expectations in nearly every state, except the key battlegrounds that continue to have election integrity questions and will ultimately decide the final outcome of the electoral college.

There were very similar opportunities for Republican success in down-ballot federal and state races; however, they all came up short in these states. 

  • Arizona – Incumbent Senator Martha McSally lost her race, and Republicans failed to pick up either competitive U.S. House seats outside of Phoenix.
  • Georgia – Both Sen. David Perdue and Sen. Kelly Loeffler failed to secure 50 percent of the votes, triggering runoff elections. Also, Republicans failed to pick-up a competitive U.S. House seat in the Atlanta suburbs and lost a nearby seat, the only Democrat pickup not caused by redistricting.
  • Michigan – John James failed to unseat incumbent Sen. Gary Peters in a very close race and Republicans failed to pick up either of the two competitive U.S. House seats covering Oakland and Wayne counties outside of Detroit.
  • Nevada – Republicans had very strong challengers in two U.S. House seats just outside of Las Vegas, but both came up short to the Democrat incumbents.
  • Pennsylvania – Republicans held two competitive U.S. House Seats. However, they failed to pick off any of the three vulnerable Democrats in districts outside the major population centers of Allentown, Pittsburgh, and Scranton.

The geographic and demographic analysis of these key states reveals a lot. Urban and suburban districts in regions across the country turned favorably for Republicans, causing House districts to flip and President Trump to secure key swing states like Florida, Iowa, and Ohio. Having campaigned on law and order in response to the civil unrest throughout the summer, it makes sense why Republicans saw their prospects improve in these areas. However it is odd that these gains happened nearly everywhere in the country except for the key battlegrounds states, especially when President Trump campaigned almost exclusively in these states in the final days. National Review did address outliers for Joe Biden’s performance in several major cities, but no piece has fully captured how Trump performed compared to his 2016 totals and the impact on down ballot races in key urban and suburban centers.

One answer may be that President Trump’s message just did not resonate with the swing voters in these key battlegrounds or that there was a much stronger anti-Trump sentiment that turned out for Biden. That may be true to some degree. Yet why did geographically and demographically-similar cities and regions swing even more favorably for President Trump? The rust belt cities of Buffalo, Cleveland, Toledo, Chicago, and Gary, Indiana saw President Trump improve his vote totals, and in some cases saw Biden lose support compared to past Democrat presidential candidates. Compare those cities to Pittsburgh and Milwaukee, where Joe Biden beat Barack Obama’s unprecedented totals from 2008 and Trump underperformed, even losing support in the blue collar pro-coal, pro-steel city of Pittsburgh. When we compare them, something is amiss.

Another theory is that conservative values are gaining traction in unlikely areas, but voters just did not like Trump and his personality and so voted against him. However, if that were the case, then it would have been likely that at least one U.S. Senate or House seat would have gone in Republicans’ favor in either Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, or Pennsylvania. Instead, Democrats won nearly every close race. 

It is not clear what this contrast between the presidential results and the down ballot races in key swings states means, but it certainly exists. If voter fraud were occurring, that could help explain it. There continue to be allegations of targeted voter fraud in these key swing states; allegations are currently being resolved by courts and state legislatures.

Whatever the ultimate explanation, these seemingly strange outcomes in down ballot races deserve to be analyzed and explained.

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The Media Still Doesn’t Get It: Conservatives Tend to Vote Conservative

by Dan Hart

November 6, 2020

Four years after one of the most shocking presidential upsets in American history, and three days after another election that is too close to call, a vast swath of the mainstream media still has not figured out (or perhaps simply chooses not to acknowledge) why almost half of American voters filled in the oval for Donald Trump.

While it is certainly true that the motivations of Trump voters remain diverse, the primary motivating factor is as plain as day: millions of Americans are conservative, and they in fact voted for a president that has enacted conservative policies. This isn’t rocket science.

Two recent articles in The Atlantic particularly highlight how myopic, and even dangerously prone to vilification (as will be discussed later) so many mainstream media writers remain. In an otherwise insightful analysis of the state of our country, George Packer refers to Trump rallies as “red-drenched festivals of mass hate.” Hmmm. It seems that Mr. Packer has himself fallen prey to becoming, in his own words, an “influential journalist” who “continue[s] to fail to understand how most of their compatriots think, even as these experts spend ever more of their time talking with one another on Twitter and in TV studios.”

Does Mr. Packer really think that those thousands of people who attend Trump rallies are full of “hate”? Or could it be that they simply appreciate Trump for his public policy accomplishments that have helped keep blue collar jobs in America and unemployment low by deregulating the economy, supported the family and religious liberty, respected the value of the unborn, etc.?

Then there is “A Large Portion of the Electorate Chose the Sociopath” by Tom Nichols. Over and over again, without citing any actual proof, Mr. Nichols and many others on the Left continue to carry on the narrative that a massive swath of Trump voters are driven primarily by racism. Mr. Nichols makes this stunningly nauseating assertion: “The politics of cultural resentment, the obsessions of white anxiety, are so intense that his voters are determined not only to preserve minority rule but to leave a dangerous sociopath in the Oval Office.”

Is it possible that intelligent intellectuals like Mr. Nichols, who holds a Ph.D. from Georgetown, actually believe in their heart of hearts, that racism, not policy, is what is driving Trump voters? Again, without citing any actual evidence, he asserts that “far too many of Trump’s voters don’t care about policy.” Once more, Mr. Nichols has apparently not bothered to notice the policies that President Trump has put in place, policies that reflect the goals of the Republican Party platform on protecting the unborn, preserving religious liberty, advocating for school choice, promoting free enterprise and job growth through deregulation, appointing originalist judges, etc.

Millions of American voters also saw through the false façade that Biden is somehow a “political centrist,” as Mr. Nichols described him. How does a “centrist” run on “the most progressive platform of any Democratic nominee in the modern history of the party”? That’s a quote from a Democratic operative in The Atlanticthe very publication that Mr. Nichols is writing for. How does a centrist have a vice presidential nominee that is, according to the left-leaning Newsweekmore liberal than Bernie Sanders, and who openly advocates for public policy that enforces equality of outcome?

But beyond the patent dishonesty of this kind of writing, something much more dangerous is occurring here. The Atlantic is continuing to publish opinion pieces that grossly and disturbingly mischaracterize and demean the motivations behind Trump voters, which will only further demonize conservatives in the minds of liberals, further contributing to the breakdown in mutual respect and assumption of good faith that is critical for a functioning democracy.

Having said that, all of us, whether conservative or liberal, have a lot of work to do in order to assume that most of our fellow compatriots hold their political views in good faith—because they honestly think they are what is best for our country.

The mainstream media, though, which has so much power to shape prevailing patterns of thought, has a particularly important responsibility to do better in this area. If George Packer, Tom Nichols, and the vast majority of their mainstream media colleagues did some actual research into the true motivations of most Trump voters, they just might discover that they are actually pretty ordinary: decent, hardworking people who simply want to preserve America as a free republic.

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Historical Precedent Suggests That Trump Is on the Right Side of History

by Peter Sprigg

October 30, 2020

The closer we get to Election Day, the more intently many people are examining polls in an effort to determine the likely outcome of the presidential race between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.

On the one hand, Biden has held a consistent lead in the average of national polls on the website RealClearPolitics. The same website’s aggregation of state polls suggest a significant lead for Biden in the electoral college vote as well.

On the other hand, similar indicators four years ago pointed to a Hillary Clinton victory—yet in the end, she lost in the (decisive) electoral college, despite winning the popular vote. These comparisons are keeping Trump supporters hopeful, and Biden supporters on edge.

However, there is another way of predicting the outcome that has nothing to do with polls. Instead, it has to do with repeating patterns of history.

There is one such pattern that I have never seen anyone describe. It is this: since the 1951 ratification of the 22nd Amendment, which limited the president to a maximum of two terms, we have had an almost unbroken pattern of the two major parties, Republican and Democratic, alternating in their control of the White House every eight years.

After the first president, George Washington, voluntarily stepped down after serving two terms, subsequent presidents had followed that tradition. First elected in 1932, Franklin Roosevelt broke with that tradition when he sought, and won, a third term in 1940. He was then re-elected to a fourth term in 1944—but died shortly after it began, in 1945. The 22nd Amendment, introduced in 1947 and ratified by 1951, ensured that no future president would be able to maintain a similar hold on the office.

People of my (baby boom) generation have witnessed convulsive events such as the assassination of one president (Kennedy) and the resignation of another (Nixon), plus two who were impeached but not convicted (Clinton and Trump). During the period from 1968 to 1992, in a stretch of seven presidential elections, four of them featured an incumbent eligible for re-election who was not re-elected: Johnson (1968) chose not to run; Ford, who succeeded Nixon, was defeated (1976); as were Carter (1980) and George H. W. Bush (1992) in their reelection bids.  

Nevertheless, beginning with the Republican Eisenhower (serving 1953-61), Democrats Kennedy and Johnson (1961-69), and Republicans Nixon and Ford (1969-77), and ending with the more recent occupants of the White House Bill Clinton (1993-2001), George W. Bush (2001-2009), and Barack Obama (2009-2017), the eight-year cycle of party control has mostly held.

Since a Republican, President Trump, has currently occupied the White House for only four years, this pendulum swing pattern of history points toward his reelection, giving Republicans control of the White House until the 2024 election.

In the 64-year period from 1953-2017—16 four-year presidential terms—there has been only a single exception to this pattern of eight years in, eight years out, in terms of partisan control of the White House.

That exception was Republican Ronald Reagan’s defeat of Democrat Jimmy Carter’s bid for reelection in 1980, after only four (not eight) years of Democratic control of the White House.

The question, then, is—does 2020 resemble 1980?

There’s no question that 2020 has been an exceptional year. The coronavirus pandemic, and the unrest in American cities following the death of George Floyd (and other African Americans) as a result of police action will make this year go down in history. But what does that mean for the election?

Does incumbent President Donald Trump resemble Jimmy Carter? In personality, the soft-spoken Carter and the brash Trump could not be more different. However, both faced unique challenges that began with events no one could have predicted.

For Carter, it was the Iran hostage crisis. The seizure of American diplomats late in 1979, and their continued captivity throughout 1980, contributed to an impression of American impotence.

Do the continuing pandemic or racial unrest in 2020 make Donald Trump similarly vulnerable?

On the other hand, few observers, left or right, would question that Ronald Reagan was a unique political talent.

Does Joe Biden have similar gifts that would allow him to pull off a similarly historic win?

We will find out soon.

Liberals are fond of claiming that they stand on “the right side of history” (especially when they are on the wrong side of majority opinion). But regardless of polls, personalities, or policies, precedent suggests that Donald Trump’s reelection bid is on the right side of history in 2020.

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2+2=5? Rep. Vicky Hartzler Calls Out Big Brother
by FRC Action (Feb. 23, 2022)

Winston is tied up on the table—the police have arrested him for thinking his own thoughts. His interrogator stands above him, holding up four fingers...

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