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PUBLIC MARKS from jasontromm with tag state

January 2007

Libertarian Reponse to the SOTU

On Tuesday, January 23, President Bush delivered his 2007 State of the Union Address. While there were some things in the speech that were, on the whole, good, on most matters the President continued to show no appreciation for the concept of limited (particularly federal) government, and he continues to conflate the ideas of national defense and security with his stubborn continuation of his Administration’s tragic war of choice in Iraq. On the positive side, the President's health care proposal to allow replace an unlimited employer health care expense deduction with standard deductions for individuals, while not perfect, is a large step in the badly needed direction of breaking the link between employment and health insurance in this nation. It would stop federal tax discrimination against people who are not covered by employer-provided insurance. It would, as the President said, make health care more affordable for more Americans.

Illinois Choose Life Plates Upheld by Federal Judge as Free Speech

A federal judge turned back pro-abortion objections against the Choose Life license plates in Illinois saying motorists have the free speech rights to purchase them and place them on their automobiles. U.S. District Judge David Coar said protests from abortion advocates don't trump the First Amendment. Coar also said the state must issue the specialty license plates as long as the sponsors of it meet normal requirements on the design and number of motorists wanting one. Tom Brejcha, an attorney with the pro-life Thomas More Society law firm that represented the sponsor, hailed the ruling.

Lawmaker pushes medical marijuana use

A state senator whose first wife suffered a painful death wants the state to legalize medical marijuana use. Sen. Bill Mescher of Pinopolis says the issue has been on his mind for about 20 years. “My first wife died of lung cancer -- a long, agonizing death,” the Republican lawmaker said. A doctor said marijuana might help ease her pain and nausea from chemotherapy, but South Carolina law wouldn’t allow it, Mescher said. People won’t let dogs die with that kind of suffering, he said. “It’s been on my mind ever since.”

Sanford to unveil $6.5 billion budget plan

Proposals include income tax cuts, land conservation, more police Gov. Mark Sanford today will unveil his $6.5 billion state spending plan, which if adopted by the Legislature, would cut income taxes, put more officers on the street and set aside money for paying health care costs and preserving land. Sanford has already proposed boosting tourism -- the state’s largest industry -- by increasing money for local tourism and commerce groups to advertise their cities. Sanford has also proposed conserving more land and bringing broadband Internet to rural areas.

December 2006

Operation Rescue seeks abortion business closure

An abortion business in Huntsville, Ala., should be closed down after the state Health Department cited the location for violating 10 state laws, according to the front-line pro-life Operation Rescue. According to officials, the Alabama Women's Center for Reproductive Alternatives was found to have been forwarding after-hours medical emergencies to non-medical personnel, routinely failing to document the gestational age of the unborn baby, and releasing abortion patients without following the mandatory 20-minute recovery period, according to a statement from Operation Rescue.

November 2006

Economic board adds $387 million to '07 and '08 budgets

State revenues will grow by more than $387 million during the next two years, and Gov. Mark Sanford thinks some of that money should go back to taxpayers. Sanford fought with legislators to have extra revenue returned to taxpayers last session, but mostly lost the battle. Instead, lawmakers chose to restore money slashed from state programs during recent lean budget years as well as spending for projects back in their districts.

Sanford's alienation of some party stalwarts leaves him hunting for votes

These should be easy days for Republican Gov. Mark Sanford who's far ahead of his Democratic challenger in cash and ads in the final week before Election Day. Despite leading the GOP ticket that's dominated state politics for a decade, Sanford's penny-pinching political style and libertarian leanings have peeved party regulars. He often says he's running his campaign like he's one vote short of securing his second term.

October 2006

Jersey same-sex ruling may energize conservatives

Republican prospects in November's elections are decidedly brighter today as result of the ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court on same-sex marriage. The court ruled that same sex partners must be granted the same rights and benefits afforded opposite-sex couples under New Jersey's civil marriage statues, but deferred to the state legislature the decision on whether the same sex arrangement should be called marriage. So the court essentially said that same sex partnership walks like a duck, looks like a duck and should be granted all the rights and benefits of a duck, but concluded it didn't have the authority to call it a duck.

September 2006

Michigan Bill Would Require Cervical Cancer Vaccine for Girls

Michigan State Senator Beverly Hammerstrom, a Republican, has introduced a bill requiring all girls entering the sixth grade to receive a vaccination that protects against cervical cancer. Under the bill, Michigan would become the first state in the nation to require the vaccine for school entry. Since the virus that causes cervical cancer can be sexually transmitted, some parents say giving it to young girls presupposes that they will engage in premarital sex -- and may even encourage such behavior. ()() I'm against mandatory vaccinations in general and this vaccination in particular. It doesn't have a proven track record like the chicken pox vaccination. It's almost impossible to prove that it's working to protect the general population.

August 2006

Half-dozen abortion clinics shut down

Half a dozen abortion clinics in Florida and Alabama have had their doors locked after state health boards became concerned by alleged rule and drug violations, including claims of an illegal late-term procedure in Florida.

Judge's Ultimate Punishment: Teens Ride The Bus

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An Indiana judge fed up with teenage traffic violators is kicking them in the seat -- the driver's seat. Porter Superior Judge Julia Jent is sentencing the ticketed teens to the embarrassment of riding the school bus, if they are found guilty in her courtroom. The judge, said she knew she had reached the teen when the girl started crying outside her courtroom. With that, she figured she found the right punishment. "Oh my God, you would have thought I gave her and her mother the death penalty," Jent told the paper.

SC Medicaid will pay for cancer screenings

More than 50,000 South Carolina Medicaid recipients are eligible for colorectal cancer screenings through a program administered by the Health and Human Services Department. ()() This is a waste of taxpayer money. The state medicaid program will only pay $300 -- $400 dollars for this procedure. The procedure typically costs at least 4 times that much. Who's going to pay the rest of the cost? People with private insurance will get charged even more for the same procedure.

July 2006

'Black spinster' label pinned on Condi Rice

While U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has been in the Middle East meeting regional alongside Israel's military campaign in Lebanon, media outlets controlled by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah party the past few days have been using racist rhetoric in their reports, referring to the American representative as the "black woman," "raven," "colored dark skinned black lady" and "black spinster."

Young evangelicals: Bold and united

For far too long, evangelical Christians have lacked the energy and passion of reformation and awakening that so transformed the world in the Word. This deadness in the church has not only accompanied the earthquakes of civilization that have occurred in the past couple of centuries, it has in many cases precipitated those sweeping cultural and intellectual changes. But a reaction is in the offing – a reaction to postmodernism, secularism, sin and to the deadness of churches and the comatose state of hearts. According to Robert Webber, our generation appears "to be the first generation of people coming out on the other side of the crisis." Young Christians, both in America and around the globe, are being prepared by the hand of Providence for a 21st century great awakening.

Dems politicize evacuation

One of the things the President and his evacuation team must do is follow the law -- or at least people say the President is not above the law, so it’s better that he obeys it. A law especially pertinent to this situation is the 2003 Foreign Relations Authorization Act, which -- in part -- requires the government to charge evacuees commercial fare plus a dollar for government evacuation. Obeying the law, the State Department had planned to make the evacuating Americans sign a note pledging to reimburse the U.S. government before they got on board. They were charging the price of a single commercial flight from Beirut to Cyprus -- usually $150-$200. When House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi heard about this, she quickly asked her staff to find the nearest microphone. They found CNN, to which Pelosi declared, “A nation that can provide more than $300 billion for a war in Iraq can provide the money to get its people out of Lebanon.” ()() Incidentally, Nancy voted for the law which requires the state department to charge evacuees. Didn't she read the bill before voting for it?

Mideast crisis drives Bush to colorful language

A microphone picked up an unaware President Bush saying on Monday Syria should press Hezbollah to "stop doing this shit" and that his secretary of state may go to the Middle East soon. Bush was talking privately to British Prime Minister Tony Blair during a lunch at the Group of Eight summit in St Petersburg about an upsurge of violence in the Middle East, not realizing a microphone was recording what he said.

May 2006

A gruesome outcome

What's worse than legalized abortions? How about legalized abortions performed by a dangerously - and maybe criminally - inept staff that violates state rules, leading to the death of an almost full-term baby? What follows, with information provided by a State Board of Health suspension order, is a scene as gruesome as a slasher film - except it's real life. Or, more accurately, death.

April 2006

'Marketing of Evil' tops Amazon 'Current Events' chart

The book banned by the faculty of Ohio State University as "hate literature" and "homophobic tripe" is currently No. 1 on's "Current Events" best seller list. This afternoon, it hit No. 33 on Amazon's overall list.

ACLU fails to oust Minutemen

The American Civil Liberties Union failed an attempt to remove volunteers with the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps from Arizona state land. Pat King, according to the Daily Star, called the ACLU members misguided, out-of-town youngsters who don't understand what people and drug smugglers have done to her land and the valley.

March 2006

State education board rejects challenge to evolution teaching

The state Board of Education voted today to reject a challenge to how evolution is taught in South Carolina high schools. On an 11-6 vote, the state board upheld its previous evolution-only science curriculum for 10th grade biology. Last month, the state's Education Oversight Committee voted to add the phrase "critically analyze" to the evolution guidelines. [soap] Gee, that's really intelligent. Discouraging students from critical thinking. Guess, it's true. Public schools want mind-numbed little skulls full of mush. What's wrong with asking students to talk about the holes in Darwin's theories?

Ohio Court Allows Parents' Lawsuits

Parents are allowed to sue a doctor if a genetic screening misses a severe or fatal condition that would have caused them to seek an abortion, a divided state Supreme Court ruled Friday. The 4-3 decision limited such lawsuits to costs associated with a pregnancy and the birth of the child, saying such parents could not sue for pain-and-suffering damages or repayment of the costs of raising a disabled child.

Mo. Court Upholds 24-Hour Abortion Wait

The Missouri Supreme Court has upheld the state's 24-hour waiting period for abortions, a decision that turns the focus of the legal battle to federal court. The unanimous ruling Tuesday by Missouri's highest court focused on whether the 2003 law ran contrary to the state constitution. The judges rejected arguments that it was overly vague and deprived people of liberty and privacy rights.

Miss. Bill to Ban Most Abortions Advances

A state House committee voted to ban most abortions in Mississippi, which already has some of the strictest abortion laws in the nation. The bill approved by the House Public Health Committee on Tuesday would allow abortion only to save the pregnant woman's life. It would make no exception in cases of rape or incest.

February 2006

South Dakota Bill Bans Most Abortions

South Dakota moved closer to imposing some of the strictest limits on abortion in the nation as the state Senate approved legislation that would ban the procedure except when the woman's life is in danger. ()()Could this bill lead to the test case that will be used to overturn Roe v. Wade?

Intern fired for sharing faith

A former graduate student who lost an internship for discussing her Christian faith with co-workers has filed a federal lawsuit. Jacqueline Escobar was completing a master's degree in social work at California State University Long Beach when she interned with the Department of Children and Family Services, or DCFS.

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