Cuccinelli – 1775, the Root of Today's Celebrations

Editor’s Note -On this 238th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, and at a time when our nation has become so polarized, we take a moment to remember that which unites us. Ken Cuccinelli, the former Attorney General for Virginia reminds us of how quickly the tide can change, especially when declaring our independence.

Cuccinelli, now the new President of the Senate Conservatives Fund reminds us that the seeds of revolution were sown buy but a few. In 1775, only four colonies were advancing to that fateful time soon to come, but by year’s end, many others came to notice.

On Lexington Green, the immortal words of Militia Captain John Parker are forever etched into this monument to April 19, 1775, the day our revolution began.
On Lexington Green, the immortal words of Militia Captain John Parker are forever etched into this monument to April 19, 1775, the day our revolution began.

He reminds us also to think about who we really are:

“America isn’t a place, and Americans aren’t a tribe, we are a people brought together by our mutual commitment to shared principles. Such a basis for a nation was utterly unique in the history of the world in 1776, and it is a special gift to which each of us are heirs.”

God bless you and God bless America!

1775

By Ken Cuccinelli from Sword at the Ready

As we celebrate the birthday of our exceptional nation, I wanted to look back just one more year than Americans usually do today – back to 1775.

Of course, the Revolutionary War began in 1775, not 1776. Before we were ready to take the historic and dramatic step of birthing our own new nation in liberty, there were long and often painful attempts to accommodate the relationship between American colonists and the British Parliament and King.

Interestingly, one of the evolutions that happened during that year is that many Americans who started 1775 thinking of themselves as “British” did not finish the year that way. I hear from many Republicans who are having similar feelings this year. One year is a short time for such a change, and it was almost entirely driven by the British themselves. As much as some colonists, especially in Virginia, Massachusetts, South Carolina and Connecticut, were advancing toward independence in 1775, most colonists were not there when the year began.

What are some of the things the British did in 1775 to drive their subjects to rebel, you ask? There were many, and you may notice how history tends to repeat itself…

First, as the possibility of armed conflict increased from 1774 into 1775, the four leading states started removing stocks of gunpowder out of reach of Royal Governors, and they commissioned buyers around the world to buy more gunpowder and weapons for their colonial militias. Needless to say, the colonial bodies undertaking these steps weren’t approved or allowed by the Crown, nonetheless, they pressed on – at great personal risk.

The British did all they could, especially the Royal Navy, to interdict these shipments.

lexcon600So, my fellow 2nd Amendment supporters will not fail to notice that one of the first “battles” of the American Revolution was for the citizenry to arm itself adequately to protect its own rights against the government itself. It is also no surprise that the first true battle of the Revolutionary War was sparked by a British effort to seize gunpowder stored at Concord, Massachusetts. On their way to Concord, the shot heard round the world was fired at Lexington, Massachusetts and the shooting war was on.

Second, it is very important to note that even after the battles at Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775, many colonists, especially in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Maryland – the so-called “middle colonies” were not enthusiastic to press the colonial case so aggressively. They generally preferred continuing to try to talk through colonial difficulties with the Crown and Parliament, without any pushing, threatening and certainly not attacking the British.

But the British Navy began what may literally be called the naval version of ‘scorched earth’ tactics in 1775. They started threatening, attacking and burning colonial seaside towns! Can you imagine? Their notion seems to have been to bully the colonists back into line.

The Royal Navy threatened Weymouth, Marblehead and Gloucester in Massachusetts. But the first town burned was Charlestown, Massachusetts. The Royal Navy fired red-hot cannonballs to start the fire, and later that day landed nearby to begin the fight we now know as Bunker Hill.

Next door in Rhode Island, Royal Navy Captain James Wallace had been threatening Newport for months. He threatened to burn or fire on their town if they didn’t provide supplies, or if they interfered with his men, or if they allowed Patriot troops into town, and on and on.

At that time, about half of Rhode Island’s population lived on the coast or islands along the coast, so they were very vulnerable to Wallace’s threats. Then he began cannonading Newport in the summer of 1775 and regularly thereafter. By the turn of the year, three quarters of the previous inhabitants had been driven from their homes.

Wallace’s flotilla bombarded Connecticut towns too, and stole their hay and livestock.

It should be no surprise that during the summer of 1775, both colonies were among the first to call for a colonial navy, and in fact, began fitting out their own navies!

The 64-gun line-of-battle ship Asia fired a full broad side into lower Manhattan near Wall Street! This led – as intended – to great fear among those in New York City, and within weeks, many began to leave rather than live under the threat of the Asia’s guns. By the end of the year, about half of the residents had left the city.

You can picture in your mind the trail of carts and wagons and families as refugees. Such treatment, or even just seeing the sad plight of fellow colonists, would have affected people strongly.

Rough tactics engender depression and sadness, but also resistance!

In Virginia, British Captain Montagu threatened to burn York – soon to become known as Yorktown. And the Royal Governor himself – Lord Dunmore – threatened to burn Williamsburg! Hampton Roads was fired upon and so was Jamestown – the original English foothold in America.

There was a small naval battle in Charleston Harbor, in South Carolina, in November of 1775, as patriots there tried to sink ships in the channel to protect their town from the kinds of bombardments and burnings that were taking place in New England.

Starting in October, the British issued orders to their Navy Captains to go to specific towns, e.g., Gloucester, Massachusetts to “burn, destroy and lay waste the said Town together with all Vessells and Craft in the Harbour.” They also began systematic bombardments of seacoast towns.

The most infamous town burning of them all was of Falmouth, Massachusetts in October of 1775. It was done as revenge for Falmouth’s resistance to the Royal Navy in May of 1775. After some threatening back-and-forth with the local leaders, the British Navy spent an entire day bombarding the town, and then went ashore to burn it. 130 homes were burned, along with the new courthouse, the fire station and the public library. It was an instant flashpoint across the colonies.

Then, near and dear to my heart, on New Year’s Day of 1776, Norfolk, Virginia was bombarded and burned. Ironically, it was a center of Tory sentiment.

Of course, such tactics drove undecideds to the Patriot cause and embarrassed (some) Tories. Other Tories thought even stronger measures were in order. You can imagine the Patriot response to such Tory neighbors!

The third tactic used by the British that so pushed colonists toward the independence that we celebrate today was the hiring of Hessian troops to suppress the colonists. This was seen as unleashing demons of war. The Hessians were known to take some of their pay in plunder, and it was a sign to the colonists that the British intended to treat them as “savages” and not “brothers.”

1775 was a lonely year to be a Patriot in many parts of America.

Why did they suffer such depredations and keep going? In their minds it came down to one word: Liberty.

They believed in their cause and they were willing to sacrifice everything to obtain liberty in America. At that time they didn’t know whether it would be by protecting their rights as Englishmen, or striking out alone as Americans – with the prospect of having to overcome the greatest military power in the world at that time – an imposing thought!

There is much to celebrate as we think back to 1776. The Founders of this nation were bold visionaries who stepped out on a path that had never been tried before in the history of the world. They lit a lamp for the world, and they knew the risks and confronted them boldly, closing the Declaration by saying: “with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.”

America isn’t a place, and Americans aren’t a tribe, we are a people brought together by our mutual commitment to shared principles. Such a basis for a nation was utterly unique in the history of the world in 1776, and it is a special gift to which each of us are heirs.

We are truly blessed to be Americans.

Here at the Senate Conservatives Fund, we – you – back candidates that proudly carry forward the principles of the Founding Fathers against the odds and regardless of the tactics used against them. We believe that the gift we have received of America comes with a moral responsibility to preserve her, and we don’t just mean the territory of America, we mean her principled foundation.

Everything we do at SCF is to carry forward the Founders’ vision in the 21st century. The principles that built this exceptional nation are universal and timeless. That means they apply everywhere, and all the time. No exceptions.

We back candidates that share our commitment to the first principles of this country, and we ask you to sacrifice your property – your money – so that our candidates can have the gunpowder they need to fight back.

None of us – not me, not you, not our candidates – is being asked to put their head in a noose to advance the cause of life, liberty and the opportunity to pursue happiness, as the 56 signatories to the Declaration of Independence did. However, their cause must be our cause, and we need to remember that whatever our sacrifice from our “fortunes” – to use the same word the Founders used – none of us has any excuse to let up or to let long odds bring us down.

Did you know that George Washington had three wins and six losses in major battles in the Revolutionary War? He lost more battles, but he won the war.

And can you name five people who were at Valley Forge? How about three? How about two? We may not know who they were, but the whole world knows what they did! And their successors in uniform around the world continue to deserve our gratitude and respect today!

It took many unnamed heroes to make America, and it will take many more unseen heroes to return America to her foundational principles. That’s where you come in, though you may not have even realized your role.

On this day that we set aside to celebrate America and what she stands for, let me Thank You for carrying on the legacy of Valley Forge and sacrificing to put America back on a principled path of greatness once again.

God bless you and God bless America!

9 States' AG's – Call Obama to task on illegal violations

Editor’s Note – In this election year, the campaigns for the Republican nomination are being packaged as attack sessions, correctly, but they have been talking about the issues listed below as well. Of course, the media will not focus on these extremely important points, and the Obama 2012 Campaign is doing all it can to make sure it stays that way.

We at SUA certainly hope we see the vetting process on Obama actually get performed this time around in the media, if not, maybe the courts will finally deal with the complete disregard for our Constitution. Then it is our duty, and that of his opponent to constantly raise these issues so the voters will finally see that Obama is the “king with new clothes”, a naked failure.

Eric Holder gave us a convoluted explanation on why killing US citizens over seas with drones and missiles was legal yesterday, and they will soon have to argue over the constitutionality of Obama Care at SCOTUS shortly. These are important, but they are not the only issues as is well documented below.

Then there is the Fast and Furious scandal. Any Republican administration prior would have been scathingly attacked if it did a mere shadow of these trangressions, yet, Obama is at least tied for the race to the White House with Mitt Romney. Time to get educated and to educate others.

RSLC.com

Attorneys General Join Forces to Call Into Account Illegal Obama Administration Violations

MEMO:          A Report on Obama Administration Violations of Law

Just another illegal move - non-recess, recess appointment of Richard Cordray
FROM:           Attorneys General:
      • Tom Horne, Arizona;
      • Pam Bondi, Florida;
      • Sam Olens, Georgia;
      • Bill Schuette, Michigan;
      • Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma;
      • Marty Jackley, South Dakota;
      • Alan Wilson, South Carolina;
      • Greg Abbott, Texas;
      • Ken Cuccinelli, Virginia

DATE:            March 5, 2012

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Introduction

As chief legal officers of the states and commonwealths, attorneys general are the last line of defense against an increasingly overreaching federal government.  Attorneys general have a duty to uphold the laws of their respective states and uphold the U.S. and state constitutions.

One of the ways in which attorneys general protect the integrity of state laws and constitutions is by carefully reviewing the actions of the federal government and responding when they break the law or overstep the bounds of the Constitution.

Federalism is the division of authority between the federal and state governments that the Founding Fathers created to provide a check on federal power so that the federal government would not become destructive of the very liberty it was instituted to protect.

While some naïvely argue that the Constitution should “evolve” due to the fact that our Founders could not have foreseen the issues faced by our country today, they forget that the Founders faced tyranny firsthand and understood it well.  This led to the creation of a Constitution that relies on limited government, precisely to protect our citizens from today’s unprecedented overstepping of the “division of authority.”

The Landscape

While each Attorney General has policy disagreements with the Obama Administration, those disagreements are not what serve as the basis for this effort.  For example, this Administration makes many decisions and takes numerous actions that Republican attorneys general find politically ignorant or flawed from a policy standpoint.  However, that does not make those decisions or actions illegal.  The purpose of this report is to outline actions taken by this Administration that are violations of law.

The obvious example is a federal health care overhaul, passed against the will of the majority of Americans and more importantly in violation of the Constitution, which is now being challenged by more than half of the states.

While the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) has received the most attention, it serves as a representation of a much larger picture that demonstrates the continued disdain for the Constitution and laws shown by the Obama Administration.

Through the collective review by a committee of Attorneys General from nine of the 50 states, the group identified more than 21 illegal actions from this Administration and is highlighting the effects of the federal overreach on our citizens and states.

The Impact

Whether it is through the EPA, NLRB, Office of Surface Mining, FCC or other entities, the Obama Administration has aggressively used administrative agencies to implement policy objectives that cannot gain congressional approval and are outside of the law.

In Florida, a state with one of the most aggressive and innovative water quality protection programs in the country, the EPA chose to impose its own costly, unprecedented and unscientific numeric nutrient criteria.  The estimated impact the EPA’s rules would impose was dramatic, including billions of dollars in compliance costs, significant spikes in utility bills and the loss of thousands of jobs.  The Florida Attorney General’s Office sued the EPA and two weeks ago prevailed when a federal judge in Tallahassee threw out the costliest of the EPA’s rules, the one governing Florida’s streams and rivers.  In doing so, the judge found the EPA’s rules were not based on sound science and that the agency had failed to prove that its rule would prevent any harm to the environment – in other words, the EPA was found to have violated the law.

In South Carolina, the NLRB’s recess-appointed, unconfirmed general counsel threatened to sue the state for guaranteeing a secret ballot in union elections, despite 83 percent of South Carolinians voting for an amendment for such action.  When South Carolina was joined by three other states in mounting a vigorous defense, the NLRB backed down but turned their attention to Boeing, a private company and corporate citizen of South Carolina, telling the employer where they could or could not locate facilities.  Again – after a high-profile fight – the NLRB backed down in their complaint against Boeing, but only after the company and the union worked through an agreement.

In Arizona, voters passed a referendum requiring that individuals registering to vote show evidence that they are citizens.  Over 90 percent of the population can satisfy this simply by writing down a driver’s license number or naturalization number.  The less than 10 percent of those who do not have these numbers are able to register by mailing a copy of a birth certificate, passport, Indian registration number or similar documentation.  The Obama Administration argued against Arizona in the Ninth Circuit and a decision is yet to be made.

In Oklahoma, the EPA illegally usurped Oklahoma’s authority in the Clean Air Act to determine the state’s own plan for addressing sources of emissions by imposing a federal implementation plan.  The federal plan goes beyond the authority granted to the EPA in the Clean Air Act and will result in a $2 billion cost to install technology needed to complete the EPA plan and a permanent increase of 15-20 percent in the cost of electricity.  The Obama Administration is fighting Oklahoma’s appeal, which was filed in  the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals.

The ongoing fight over the individual mandate and these four state examples serve as only a representation of the more than 21 Obama Administration violations that attorneys general are fighting against.

Taking Action

What these nine Attorneys General have collectively confirmed is that this Administration repeatedly shows disdain for states, federal laws it finds inconvenient, the Constitution and the courts.

With the release of this report, and its extensive list of transgressions, two principles are abundantly clear:

  • This group of nine Attorneys General will grow and continue to serve as a de facto “task force,” assisting when possible to defend state laws and identifying “best practices” and legal arguments to fight back against the Obama Administration’s illegalities in a more cohesive and effective manner;
  • The next election is critically important and as the states’ chief legal officers, the attorneys general will make a concerted effort to educate their states’ voters on the impacts that the Obama Administration’s legal violations have on their every day lives.

Regardless of party, when Washington politicians fail to adhere to the Constitution and the rule of law, state attorneys general become the last line of defense against an overreaching federal government.

List of Violations

  • FCC: Regulation of the Internet in the face of a court order from Circuit Court of Appeals for Washington D.C. stating that the FCC does not have the power to regulate the Internet
  • PPACA: Individual Mandate; To be heard by Supreme Court of the United States in March
  • EPA 1: GHG lawsuit; EPA’s own Inspector General reported last September that EPA failed to comply with its own data standards; Heard in Circuit Court of Appeals for Washington D.C. in February
  • OSM: Attempting to impose regulatory requirements on the 19 states with authority for exclusive regulation of their coalmines for the first time in more than 30 years
  • NLRB: Boeing; Engaged in unprecedented behavior as described by former Chairmen under both Presidents Bush (43) and Clinton; behavior is best exemplified in South Carolina where the Board tried to muzzle over 80 percent of state voters who supported a secret ballot amendment to the South Carolina Constitution and attempted unsuccessfully to tell an employer in the state where they can and cannot base manufacturing facilities
  • EPA: Florida Water; EPA’s numeric nutrient criteria pre-empted Florida standards; U.S. District Judge upheld the state’s site-specific alternative criteria for streams and rivers
  • EPA: Texas Air; TX filed lawsuit challenging Cross-State Air Pollution Rules; application rule to TX was particularly dubious because state was included in the regulation at the last minute and without an opportunity to respond to the proposed regulation; regulation was based on a dubious claim that air pollution from TX affected a single air-quality monitor in Granite City, Illinois more than 500 miles and three states away from Texas
  • EPA: Oklahoma Air; EPA illegally usurped Oklahoma’s authority in the Clean Air Act to determine the state’s own plan for addressing sources of emissions that affect visibility, by imposing a federal implementation plan; Federal plan goes beyond the authority granted to the EPA in the Clean Air Act and will result in $2 billion in cost to install technology needed to complete the EPA plan, and a permanent increase of 15-20 percent in the cost of electricity; Obama Administration is fighting Oklahoma’s appeal, which was filed in the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals
  • HHS: Religious Liberty; HHS mandated religious entities such as Catholic, Baptist and Jewish schools and churches be required to provided medical services they find unconscionable to their employees; President attempted to compromise with an “accommodation” in name only that required insurance companies to provide the services for free to the religious organization employees; Accommodation made matters worse as many religious-base hospitals and schools are self-insurers; Seven Attorneys General filed suit to protect religious liberty and oppose the HHS mandate
  • DOJ: South Carolina & Voting Rights Act: Rejecting voter ID statutes that are similar to those already approved by the Supreme Court of the United States; DOJ ignored section 8 of the Voting Rights Act which calls for protections against voter fraud, and used section 5 to administratively block measures to protect the integrity of elections passed by state legislatures in preclearance states including South Carolina; South Carolina voter ID law merely requires a voter to show photo identification in order to vote or to complete an affidavit at the pain of perjury if the voter does not have a photo ID
  • DOJ: Arizona & Voting Rights Act: Rejecting voter ID statutes that are similar to those already approved by the Supreme Court of the United States
  • DOJ: Arizona Immigration; In violation of 10th Amendment, federal government to sue to prevent AZ from using reasonable measures to discourage illegal immigration within Arizona’s borders; Affects Arizona because state has a large percentage, compared to other states, of illegal immigrants and need to be able to act to reduce the number
  • DOJ: Alabama Immigration; The DOJ challenged Alabama’s immigration reform laws after parts were “green lighted” by a federal judge; DOJ appealed the ruling; parts of the AL case have been struck down in various federal courts; specific provisions of the law include collection of the immigration status of public school students, businesses must use E-Verify, prohibition of illegal immigrants receiving public benefits; the provision requiring immigrants to always carry alien registration cards; allowance of lawsuits by state citizens who do not believe public officials are enforcing the law
  • DOJ: South Carolina Immigration; DOJ challenged South Carolina’s immigration reform laws that are very similar to the AZ which is scheduled to appear before the United States Supreme Court; SC case will be heard by the 4th Circuit soon there after as the 4th Circuit granted SC motion to extend the filing time until after the US Supreme Court issues an Opinion in AZ
  • Congressional: “Recess” appointments to NLRB (three) and CFPB (one)
  • EEOC: Hosanna Tabor (MI); Sought to reinstate a minister who was discharged for her disagreement with the religious doctrine of the church
  • DOE: Yucca Mountain; In 2009, Administration arbitrarily broke federal law and derailed the most studied energy project in American history when DOE announced intent to withdraw 8,000 page Yucca Mountain licensing application with prejudice; SC and Washington State filed suit, as a result, contesting the unconstitutional action; American people have paid more than $31 billion (including interest) through percentages of electric rate fees towards the project and taxpayers have footed an addition $200 million in legal feeds and over $2 billion in judgments against the DOE for breaking contracts associated with Yucca Mountain
  • DOI: Glendale Casino (AZ); Glendale is a violation because the Federal Government is forcing a family-oriented town, Glendale, to become another Las Vegas against its will.  Essentially, the Federal Government has granted ‘reservation status’ to a 54-acre plot in the same town, where the Tohono O’odham Nation plans to build a resort and casino.