7:32 AM, Mar 30, 2015 • By JERYL BIER
During President Obama's tenure, religious Americans have been increasingly marginalized by an administration that can be intolerant or at least unaccomodating of beliefs that conflict with its policies, regulations, or legislative goals. Perhaps most notably, President Obama campaigned by expressing support for traditional marriage, more than once citing his Christianity as the basis for his position, a position he later "evolved" away from. This has not stopped the president, however, from invoking scripture in support of other items on his agenda.
The most recent example came last week during a trip to Alabama to draw attention to a relatively obscure item on the president's policy list, payday lending rules. The president said some "very conservative folks" recognize scriptural prohibitions against excessive interest, or usury, part of a Biblical principle to prevent exploitation of the poor. Here are the president's remarks in context:
You've got some very conservative folks here in Alabama who recognize -- they're reading their Bible, they're saying, well, that ain’t right. (Laughter and applause.) Right? I mean, they're saying the Bible is not wild about somebody charging $1,000 worth of interest on a $500 loan. Because it feels like you're taking advantage of somebody.
President Obama's citation of "folks" in Alabama reading their Bibles and concluding "that ain’t right" seems especially ironic in light of the recent drama in that state over same-sex marriage. A federal judge struck down state laws defining marriage as one man-on woman, a decision the state appealed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, which declined to stay the original ruling. However, the Alabama state supreme court chief justice, Roy Moore, subsequently ordered a halt to the issuance of same-sex marriage licenses, and the Alabama house approved a bill that would permit judges, ministers and other officials to decline to perform same-sex marriage ceremonies.
Although the president has not directly commented on the same-sex marriage controversy in Alabama, just three weeks ago White House press secretary Josh Earnest reiterated that the president speaks out "boldly in support of gay marriage," so it seems safe to say the those who look at their Bibles and same-sex marriage and conclude "that ain't right" would not find the president in their corner on that issue.
President Obama recently attempted to use the Bible in support of his immigration initiatives, with mixed success. He noted that the "good book" says to "make sure we’re looking at the log in our eye before were pulling out the mote in other folks eyes" (which does appear in Scripture), but also "don’t throw stones in glass houses" (a much more recent proverb of uncertain origin).
A man of policies, ideas, and solutions.Apr 6, 2015, Vol. 20, No. 29 • By FRED BARNES
In 1989, Gary Palmer founded the Alabama Policy Institute, a conservative think tank. By the time he resigned as its president last year, API had become a powerful force on state issues, everything from pensions to prison reform to politics. Palmer led the successful fight against a lottery—Alabama is among the few states without one—and organized the drive that defeated Republican governor Bob Riley’s bid for a whopping tax increase.
9:17 AM, Jan 6, 2015 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
While college football fans were riveted to the two playoff games on New Year’s Day (make that one-and-a-half playoff games, as the second half of the Rose Bowl was hardly must-see T.V.), some commentators could hardly wait to seize the moment to criticize the Bowl Championship Series (BCS), college football’s previous format for determining its national champion.
By 60 to 23 percent margin, fans said they would rather entrust the BCS than a committee. 6:04 PM, Dec 7, 2014 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
Most college football fans are happy that the sport has adopted a 4-team playoff. The method of selecting those four teams, however, is another matter. This past offseason, McLaughlin & Associates asked self-described college football fans this question: “As you may know, college football will have a 4-team playoff starting next season.
We need rivalries.4:05 PM, Dec 3, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
A few hours before kickoff, my wife and daughter and I went to Gladys Knight’s place in Atlanta for the chicken and waffles (can’t recommend the “Midnight Special” enough) and the room was full. It seemed like every third table was occupied by people wearing crimson or orange. When they caught the attention of someone in similar colors they would utter their war cry. “Roll Tide,” of course, or “War Eagle.”
10:06 AM, Dec 3, 2014 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
For the past decade, the Bowl Championship Series unfailingly provided the matchup for college football’s national title game that reflected the public consensus. (In the six years prior to that, the BCS’s record was spottier, but after 2003-04, its formula was wisely streamlined, and its subsequent results were impeccable.) This year, that BCS selection process, which involved 167 polls voters and six compu
10:55 AM, Oct 13, 2014 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
Half of this college football regular season (7 of 14 weeks) is now in the books, and neither of the two standout teams to date has won a conference championship, let alone a national championship, in the past half-century. Each played in a bowl game in Tennessee last year (the Music City Bowl and Liberty Bowl, respectively), far away from the bright lights of Pasadena, New Orleans, or Dallas. What’s more, the two are separated from each other by only 100 miles geographically and by only .001 in this week’s Anderson & Hester Rankings. Despite their modest pedigrees and expectations, however, few college football fans would deny that #1 Mississippi (6-0, with wins over #7 Alabama and #17 Texas A&M) and #2 Mississippi State (6-0, with wins over #6 Auburn and #17 Texas A&M) have accomplished more so far this season than any other teams in the country.
9:27 AM, Oct 7, 2014 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
After finishing the season ranked #29 last year, the Arizona Wildcats — hot off their upset win at Oregon — have claimed the top spot in the inaugural 2014 Anderson & Hester Rankings. The second and fourth spots are held by two schools from Mississippi — #2 Mississippi and #4 Mississippi State — that went a combined 15-11 last year. Sandwiched in between are the Auburn Tigers, who came within 14 seconds of winning last season’s national championship. TCU, which went 4-8 last year, rounds out the top-5.
5:54 PM, Sep 6, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Senator Jeff Sessions issues this statement in response to President Obama's decision to wait until after the mid-term election to take action on immigration by executive order.
4:01 PM, Aug 13, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Senator Jeff Sessions says Americans should be asking where their elected representatives in Washington stand on "executive amnesty," which the Alabama Republican says "could be increasingly imminent and broad in scope." Here's an excerpt from his statement:
9:45 AM, Jul 16, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Gary Palmer, the founder of the conservative Alabama Policy Institute and a candidate for the House of Representatives, won his Republican primary runoff Tuesday against Paul DeMarco. Palmer is running to succeed retiring Republican Spencer Bachus for the GOP-friendly, Birmingham-area district. At National Review Online, Alabama resident Quin Hillyer has more:
8:01 AM, May 22, 2014 • By FRED BARNES
Gary Palmer, who is seeking a House seat in Alabama, is a unique candidate. Until this year, he’d never run for political office. Yet he has a long and impressive record in politics. He was a walk-on for Bear Bryant’s University of Alabama football team – whoops, that’s not politics.
Seven Alabama Republicans are hard to tell apart. May 19, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 34 • By MARIA SANTOS
No House district in the country is more Republican than Alabama’s 6th, where the retirement of Spencer Bachus opens the seat for the first time in 22 years. The district voted 74 percent for Mitt Romney, so whoever captures a majority in the seven-way Republican primary in June—or, in the likely event no one does, whoever wins the runoff in July—can expect to be moving to Washington.
7:01 AM, Apr 17, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Over two dozen widows in Alabama were dropped from their health care plans due to Obamacare, WHNT reports:
3:02 PM, Mar 28, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
Admiral Jeremiah Denton is dead at 89. Americans of a certain age will remember him, if not by name, then as the returning Vietnam POW who stepped off the plane at Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines and concluded some remarks with the words, “God bless America.”