Category archives: States

The Forgotten Impact of State Authorities

by Emily Weatherholt

June 27, 2018

Later this year, gubernatorial elections will occur across the country, in which individuals have the opportunity to shape the future of their states in both the governor and lieutenant governor positions. However, statistics show that turnout for these elections drops by over 30 percent when compared with voter turnout during presidential elections. While Kentucky, California, New York, and many other states are also experiencing voter percentages dropping for local elections, let’s focus on Virginia’s statistics. Virginia’s Department of Elections Board reports that in 2016, 72 percent of registered voters turned out to the polls to vote in the presidential election. However, the years both before and after the election year show diminishing results. In 2015, only 21 percent of registered voters participated in local elections, and in 2017, only 47.6 percent of registered voters participated in local elections.

These statistics show the emphasis that has been placed on presidential elections over state elections. As the federal government has become involved in more and more aspects of our lives, the influence of the state is being forgotten. The millennial generation, which is known for wanting to make a positive impact, composes a large majority of the current voting population that is not participating in state elections. While change on a federal level may have the most widespread results, voters today are forgetting the tremendous opportunity they have by being able to influence their own state legislation.

In the case of the upcoming state governor elections, voters have the chance to influence the path their state will follow for the next four years. Each state government is modeled after the workings of the federal government. The state governor has the authority, in a majority of states, to appoint the state judiciary, to control the executive budget, and to enforce a legislative veto. Over the course of two or four years, many new laws can be enacted and enforced that either strengthen or weaken an individual’s freedom.

An example of this is a state’s ability to pass a Government Nondiscrimination Act, which would ensure religious liberties relating to the biblical definition of marriage are protected. While the case of Obergefell v. Hodges proclaimed the constitutional right to same-sex marriage, the states retain the power to ensure that Christians and other religious people are not forced to affirm this definition of marriage in their lives and businesses. Participation in state elections allows individuals to advocate for their states to protect their rights and avoid being penalized for holding to a biblical definition of marriage.

The Founding Fathers originally determined that state government should have more power than the federal government. If participation and understanding of the importance of state elections were recognized by more of the voting population, decisions such as Roe v. Wade could have been tempered in their influence, for voters would elect politicians seeking to limit the expansiveness of how abortion is practiced. As governor and lieutenant governor elections fast approach, the burden is on the people to shape the future of their state and make a change, as many millennials desire. This can be achieved by contacting local officials and participating in the upcoming governor and lieutenant governor elections.  

Emily Weatherholt is an intern at FRC Action.

See FRCA’s new ad on the Texas Privacy Act

by FRC Action

August 10, 2017

Family Research Council Action (FRC Action) launched a video ad campaign across Texas that exposes the hypocrisy of corporations that are opposing the special session legislation that protects the privacy and safety of women and children.

FRC Action’s social media ad campaign calls on House Speaker Joe Straus, Rep. Byron Cook and other Texas State Representatives (Dennis Bonnen, Charlie Geren, Ken King, John Kuempel, and Chris Paddie) to listen to their constituents and support the Texas privacy legislation instead of listening to corporations such as American Airlines and Google which advocate for bathroom policies that they will not adopt in their own facilities. The hypocrisy begs the question, “Why is big business getting involved in the state government?”

Last week, the Texas State Senate passed the bill which prevents public schools and government buildings from adopting policies that would open women’s showers, bathrooms, and changing facilities to men and visa-versa. It also prevents political subdivisions from forcing businesses and organizations, including contractors, to open their showers, locker rooms, and bathrooms to people of the opposite sex. It leaves private entities free to determine their own policies regarding the use of shared bathrooms and showers.

Here is the transcript of the “Big Business Hypocrisy” Ad:

They say ‘Don’t mess with Texas,’ right?

So, why is big business getting involved in the state government?

Well, you probably know the Trump administration left the states the power to determine the shower, locker room, and restroom policies of schools.

Smart move.

So, during the regular session, the Texas Senate passed the Privacy Act, which would have protected the privacy and safety of women and children.

The act is simple.

It would have required schools and state buildings to have policies that require people to use the facility that corresponds to their biological sex and to make accommodations for those who identify as transgender. It would have left businesses free to adopt whatever policy they want.

So, what’s the big deal?

Well, big business is demanding Texas expose women and children to policies that could endanger them in the most private of places… by allowing men into women’s restrooms and locker rooms.

But those same businesses like Hilton, Marriott, La Quinta, American Airlines, Google, and others refuse to enact the same unsafe policies in their own facilities… even though they are free to do it.

It’s hypocrisy.

Call House Speaker Joe Straus. Urge him to stop blocking a strong shower, locker room, and bathroom privacy bill from getting a House vote.

Will Speaker Straus side with the Obama administration’s radical agenda, or listen to the overwhelming number of Texans who support the commonsense Texas Privacy Act?

Click your representative’s name below to watch the ad and tell him to support the Texas Privacy Act:

Rep. Byron Cook
Rep. Chris Paddie
Rep. Dennis Bonnen
Rep. John Kuempel
Rep. Ken King
Rep. Charlie Geren
Speaker Joe Straus

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ICE: Unsung Heroes or Anti-Immigrant?
by Emily Weatherholt (July 11, 2018)

Throughout the years, ICE has created alternatives for detention programs, created apps to help prevent child exploitation on the internet and track children that have been abducted by sex trafficking ...

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