Texas governor fights woke revisionist history, signs bill defending Alamo legacy
Bill pushes back on new book framing fight as all about slavery
The defenders of the Alamo went down to defeat nearly two centuries ago, but still raging is the clash over the legacy of the storied Texas Revolution battle that gave rise to the cry, “Remember the Alamo!”
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed legislation last week to create the 1836 Project named after the year Texas declared its independence from Mexico, to help counter what Republicans describe as an onslaught of critical-race theory and woke revisionist history.
“To keep Texas the best state in the United States of America, we must never forget why Texas became so exceptional in the first place,” said Mr. Abbott at the June 7 signing. “A law creating the 1836 Project does that. The 1836 Project promotes patriotic education about Texas and makes sure that generations to come understand Texas values.”
How Congress, trial lawyers, unions hobble the U.S. in race with China to develop driverless cars
America is in a battle with China over who will dominate the auto market of the future when automated vehicles transport people and goods without anyone behind the steering wheel or even without steering wheels at all.
But a bill intended to help U.S. companies compete has been stalled for two years, largely over the demands of trial lawyers, according to Republican congressional aides involved with the legislation.
The trial lawyers, an influential lobby with Democrats, are demanding that any legislation concerning driverless vehicles include a guarantee that they will be able to take auto companies to court should anything go wrong.
North Korea’s Kim Jong-un vows to be ready for confrontation with U.S.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un ordered his government to be prepared for both dialogue and confrontation with the Biden administration — but more for confrontation — state media reported Friday, days after the United States and others urged the North to abandon its nuclear program and return to talks.
Kim‘s statement indicates he‘ll likely push to strengthen his nuclear arsenal and increase pressure on Washington to give up what North Korea considers a hostile policy toward the North, though he‘ll also prepare for talks to resume, some experts say.
During an ongoing ruling party meeting Thursday, Kim analyzed in detail the policy tendencies of the U.S. under President Biden and clarified steps to be taken in relations with Washington, the Korean Central News Agency said. It did not specify the steps.
Ex-White House doctor, House Republicans push for Biden cognitive test
Rep. Ronny Jackson, a former White House doctor, sent a letter to President Biden on Thursday that called on him to prove his mental fitness to be president.
The letter, which was co-signed by 13 other Republican lawmakers, told the president that he seems to be suffering “mental decline and forgetfulness” based on numerous “gaffes.”
“We urge you to submit to a cognitive test immediately,” the lawmakers wrote.
“Unfortunately, your mental decline and forgetfulness have become more apparent over the past eighteen months. In March, you forgot the name of the Pentagon, the Department of Defense and the Defense Secretary, though you had said ‘Secretary Austin’ just a few moments prior. The official White House transcript reads ‘And I want to thank Sec- —— the former general —— I keep calling him “General.” My —— the guy that runs that outfit over there,’” the letter reads.
Sen. Cruz: Biden, Harris Have 'Zero Intention' of Fixing Border Crisis
States are jumping in to help Texas and Arizona with the border crisis because President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris have "zero intention" of doing anything about it, Sen. Ted Cruz said Friday.
"It is a complete and total abdication by the federal government," the Texas Republican said on Fox News' "Fox and Friends." "Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are quite simply not doing their jobs and refusing to enforce the law and they've created an unmitigated crisis at the border."
Meanwhile, Cruz said it is a "very good thing" to see other states stepping up to help at the border. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced earlier this week that Florida will send law enforcement officers to Texas and Arizona to help with border control efforts, while the state is also challenging the Biden administration in federal court about immigration. His announcement was made after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey sent a letter to governors last week asking for their help in fighting illegal immigration.
'View' Hosts McCain, Goldberg Spar Over Biden's Treatment of Media
President Joe Biden's confrontation with a reporter at the end of a press conference in Europe this week prompted a heated exchange between "The View" co-hosts Meghan McCain and Whoopi Goldberg.
The co-hosts went at it Thursday, a day after Biden shouted at CNN's Kaitlan Collins upon her asking the president what made him confident Russian President Putin will change his widely condemned behavior.
Biden's reaction to Collins came at the end of a press conference in Geneva, where he held a summit with Putin.
Obamacare survives after Supreme Court rejects latest Republican challenge
The Supreme Court ruled 7-2 on Thursday against Texas and other Republican-led states seeking to strike down Obamacare in the law’s latest test before the nation’s highest court.
The court reversed an appeals court ruling that had struck down the law’s individual mandate provision. Chief Justice John Roberts and fellow conservative Justices Clarence Thomas, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett joined Justice Stephen Breyer’s opinion, as did Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.
Breyer said Texas and the other states that challenged the law failed to show they were harmed by it.
GOP crushes Manchin’s hopes for elections compromise
Senate Republicans spent months praising Joe Manchin for his insistence on cross-party compromise. Next week they will almost surely end his hopes for a bipartisan deal on elections.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said he believed all 50 Republicans would oppose Sen. Manchin’s (D-W.Va.) slimmed-down elections compromise, which focuses on expanding early voting and ending partisan gerrymandering in federal elections. And it’s not clear there’s a single Republican vote to even begin debate on the matter, potentially dooming Manchin's proposals before they can even make it into the bill.
Both Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Mitt Romney (R-Utah) said they would likely oppose a procedural vote next week that would bring Democrats’ massive elections reform bill to the Senate floor. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said that the Senate could amend the bill to adopt Manchin’s changes. But Romney said supporting that strategy “doesn’t make a lot of sense to me" and Murkowski said “Joe hasn’t briefed me on any of this.”
China mulls end to childbirth restrictions by 2025: report
China is considering ending its limits on childbirth by 2025 after finding its population growth is slowing down.
People familiar with the internal discussions told The Wall Street Journal the country could completely eliminate its childbirth restrictions at the end of the government’s current five-year economic plan.
China’s National Bureau of Statistics found in May the country’s birth rate dropped for four consecutive years from 2016 to 2020.
Xinjiang province has reportedly seen the sharpest birth rate drop globally since 1950.
Israel hits Gaza with airstrikes after Hamas fires incendiary balloons
Israel launched airstrikes on the Gaza Strip late Thursday for a second time since a shaky cease-fire ended last month's 11-day war. The strikes came after activists mobilized by Gaza's militant Hamas rulers launched incendiary balloons into Israel for a third straight day.
There were no immediate reports of casualties from the strikes, which could be heard from Gaza City. Israel also carried out airstrikes early Wednesday, targeting what it is said were Hamas facilities, without killing or wounding anyone.
The military said fighter jets struck Hamas "military compounds and a rocket launch site" late Thursday in response to the balloons. It said its forces were preparing for a "variety of scenarios including a resumption of hostilities."
Joint Chiefs head says China lacks ‘capability’ to capture Taiwan
China’s military forces have not developed the ability to carry out a military assault against the island of Taiwan, despite a large-scale build-up by Beijing in recent years, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff told Congress on Thursday.
Army Gen. Mark Milley made the assessment during a Thursday hearing of the Senate Appropriations Committee when asked about China’s announced determination of eventually reuniting the island state with the mainland.
Recently the current and former commanders of the Indo-Pacific Command offered differing assessments on when China could conduct an amphibious assault on Taiwan.
GOP slams Biden for giving Putin ‘Sweet 16’ list of targets off-limits to cyberattacks
President Biden is under fire for giving Russian President Vladimir Putin a list of 16 U.S. critical infrastructure sectors that should be off-limits to cyberattacks, with Republicans saying the entire U.S. should be off-limits.
“President Biden can’t help signaling weakness, even by accident,” said Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican. “All of America’s critical infrastructure is off-limits to Putin.”
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, California Republican, tweeted, “What’s not on the list? ALL American infrastructure should be off-limits for cyber attacks.”
At their summit in Geneva on Wednesday, Mr. Biden gave the Russian leader a list of entities that should not be targeted in ransomware attacks or other hacking that is believed to come from Russia.
Trump was right; so were we
Last Saturday, former President Donald Trump released a statement that said, “Have you noticed that they are now admitting I was right about everything they lied about before the election?” The statement went on to list specific points, ranging from the efficacy of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) as a treatment for COVID-19 to the “Russian bounties” story to the need to reopen schools. And you know what? He was right. And so were we.
We were right about the efficacy of HCQ as a treatment for COVID-19. A new study “found that the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine, along with zinc, could increase the coronavirus survival rate by as much as nearly 200% if distributed at higher doses to ventilated patients with a severe version of the illness,” according to Yahoo! News. Big Tech should not have canceled – and should not continue canceling – those who tout HCQ and its benefits.
We were right about the origins of the COVID-19 virus. When even liberal icon Jon Stewart chooses to joke about the origins of the coronavirus — and mock those who insist it was born naturally, when “a pangolin kissed a turtle” – you know you’ve hit pay dirt.
The unintended consequences of making Juneteenth a national holiday
It is easy to imagine a facile narrative in which people essentially tell themselves, ‘Slavery was bad. The good guys won the Civil War. And now racism is over.’
On Wednesday, the House followed the Senate in passing a bill to make Juneteenth a national holiday. President Biden signed it into law Thursday afternoon. After a century and a half, the oldest celebration of Black emancipation is now a federal holiday.
Juneteenth is an occasion we should all commemorate, but what are the risks of taking the celebration of Black freedom mainstream? As more organizations and communities across the nation recognize Juneteenth, there may be some unintended consequences that make it harder for people to recognize the significance of the occasion.
The long effort to make Juneteenth a federally recognized holiday nearly became a reality in 2020 with momentum from historic protests for racial justice. A single lawmaker, Republican Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, opposed the effort, and other GOP officials moved on to other matters.