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OCC should fire bully professor

December 18, 2016

By SHAWN STEEL / Contributing writer

Should Orange County students be publicly shamed by their professor and forced to disclose their political beliefs?

This month, College Republicans at Orange Coast College raised that question by posting video of psychology professor Olga Perez Stable Cox in an extended post-election tirade attacking Donald Trump, Mike Pence and Orange County.

“We have been assaulted; it’s an act of terrorism,” Cox said of Trump’s election, who she considers a “white supremacist.”

If Cox’s political commentary seems out-of-place in a human sexuality course, just wait for her assessment of the community that pays her $162,000 every year in taxpayer-funded salary and benefits.

“Living in Orange County is scary when you know you’re surrounded by so many people that are so hateful,” Cox told her captive audience of psychology students.

Members of the OCC College Republicans hold a U.S. flag as a counter protest to other students, including those in the Feminist Club, who show their support for instructor Olga Perez Stable Cox during a campus rally in Costa Mesa, California, December 12, 2016.  Jeff Gritchen, Orange County Register/SCNG
Her extremist statements unrelated to the course material, coupled with her disdain for our community, are reason enough for concern. But, it’s what happened next that clearly crossed the line from offensive to inexcusable.

After her political rant against Trump and Orange County, students say that Cox demanded Trump supporters stand and publicly identify themselves.

“She tried to get everyone who voted for Donald Trump to stand up and show the rest of the class who to watch out for and protect yourself from,” Tanner Webb, a 21-year-old student from Huntington Beach told the Register.

Such behavior is inexcusable. Professors have a responsibility to present controversial topics on their subject matters and inspire critical thinking within a classroom. That can’t happen when a professor spews hateful rhetoric and bullies students into disclosing their political affiliations. By isolating a group of students as threats, Cox jeopardized the safety of the Trump supporters. Let’s not forget that professors are in positions of power — with the ability to determine a student’s grade and, in turn, academic future.

In response to the incident, Cox’s labor union — the Coast Federation of Educators, AFT Local 1911 — attacked the student for making an unauthorized recording in a classroom. Citing an obscure Education Code, the union has led the charge for disciplining the student — with talk of possible expulsion.

Only in the morally fluid, post-modern world of modern academia can a student be bullied by their professor, then threatened with expulsion for recording the incident.

Today’s college students have a weapon the Free Speech Movement of the 1960s never had: the ability to record. Those recordings of professorial intimidation and indoctrination have the power to break what Register contributor and Chapman University professor Joel Kotkin describes as progressive “social control and the consolidation of a cognitively determined world order.”

Thankfully, Orange Coast College students are resisting this academic intimidation. College Republicans have used social media to share their videos.

If there are to be substantial reforms for advancing free speech and intellectual diversity, those changes should begin at Orange Coast College. It’s time that our community — yes, the same people who Perez Stable Cox finds so “scary” — join their effort to resist the daily indoctrination by far-left extremists.

Bullies have no place in the classroom, especially at the front of the class.

Shawn Steel, a former chairman of the California Republican Party, is the California national committeeman on the Republican National Committee and an attorney who is representing Orange Coast College Republicans.




Hillary Clinton Would Be America’s First Illegitimate President

October 19, 2016

By

The Election of Hillary Clinton Would Fundamentally Break the American Social Contract


Hillary Rodham Clinton has a long record of using public service to enrich herself, sell out American interests and further her own political ambitions for power.

Hillary Rodham Clinton has a long record of using public service to enrich herself, sell out American interests and further her own political ambitions for power.

The 2016 presidential election has been an election of “firsts.” The first female nominee of a major political party; perhaps the first female president; the first time a non-politician dispatched a record number of professional political candidates to win a major party nomination; and, the first time a Republican candidate ever received more than 13 million votes during a presidential primary.

Unfortunately, if elected in November, Hillary Clinton would be America’s first illegitimate President of the United States. She will be the chief executive of a government stained by a crisis of credibility and it will most likely plunge the country into a period of civil turmoil she is wholly incapable of reversing. In an election of firsts, we make this first of a kind statement not with a vindictive intention to incite unrest but rather with a hope to avoid it.

This has been the first presidential election cycle in which Big Media finally dropped the false pretenses and phony claim to impartiality. Whether Donald Trump wins or loses, like the Old Guard in the Great Opportunity Party (GOP), their days are numbered.

Knowing what we know now, the election of Mrs. Clinton would fundamentally break the American social contract and put into question the very credibility of the U.S. government as a representative body of, by, and for the people.

The American social contract is predicated on equitable treatment under the law and, perhaps even more importantly, at least a minimal confidence in representative government. The vast majority of the citizenry must believe that the process of choosing who represents them in this government is fair. However, roughly half of Donald Trump’s supporters not only believe the entire process is rigged, but will not except the outcome the powers that be have worked so hard to achieve.

In truth, people have felt the system is rigged against them for quite sometime and with good reason. Whether we agree with his tactics or not, Donald Trump has done this country a great service by exposing what many already knew to be the truth,

“Should Hillary get ‘elected’ she is immediately delegitimized,” California RNC Committeeman Shawn Steel told the propaganda magazine Politico for a story meant to mock those with enough independent thought to see what is going on. “The 1% of Wall Street Bankers, Clinton Machine and [mainstream media] including your employer, Politico, is part of a massive Left Wing Conspiracy to rig this election.”

For the first time ever, millions of Americans have a legitimate claim. Their grievance that the government and Big Media have been so corrupted that the system no longer works for them is viable–the system is rigged. We now know that Mrs. Clinton is being protected by what is unquestionably a totally corrupt Fourth Estate, which our founding fathers viewed to be the only viable alternative to revolution and civil war.

“[A despotic] government always [keeps] a kind of standing army of newswriters who, without any regard to truth or to what should be like truth, [invent] and put into the papers whatever might serve the ministers,” Thomas Jefferson wrote in 1785 to Gijsbert Karel van Hogendorp, a conservative Dutch statesman. “This suffices with the mass of the people who have no means of distinguishing the false from the true paragraphs of a newspaper.”

The election of Hillary Clinton would prove that Americans–albeit uninformed and misguided by a corrupt press–have opted to submit to what Marcus Tullius Cicero called “tyranny by popular support.” But we fear greatly for such a future not only because of the realities of tyranny–whether by force or popular support–but because we recognize the true national identity still runs strong enough within the fiber of American society that millions will not stand idle in the face of it.

“This formidable censor of the public functionaries, by arraigning them at the tribunal of public opinion, produces reform peaceably, which must otherwise be done by revolution,” Jefferson wrote to Adamantios Coray in 1823.

We now know that Hillary Clinton mishandled classified information in a manner that would result in any other American being prosecuted, potentially incarcerated and certainly prohibited from ever obtaining federal employment ever again, let alone hold a security clearance.

We now know that Hillary Clinton repeatedly lied to the American public, and repeatedly revised those lies with evolving lies regarding her grossly incompetent and reckless use of a private email server to conduct official State Department business.

We now know that Hillary Clinton designed and pushed a secret war in Libya that was not authorized by Congress. We now know she waged this secret war against a compliant ally in the War on Terror and, after he was toppled, allowed State Department officials and CIA contractors to remain in harm’s way without adequate security, despite multiple requests, which resulted in the deaths of four Americans.

We now know that Hillary Clinton knowingly lied about the cause and circumstance of their deaths to protect her own political future. Rather than exposing those lies, Big Media at every turn helped to cover them up, even aiding in her shameful display during congressional hearings in which she flatly perjured herself.

How could the U.S. military faithfully serve such a leader with honor? They couldn’t. How could they trust she would hold their best interests at heart? They couldn’t. Of those we’ve spoken with, on both accounts they simply don’t.

How far we’ve fallen from our beginning. George Washington was unanimously chosen to serve as the executive in a new national experiment in self-governance. Perhaps no leader in the history of representative governments ever enjoyed more legitimacy and credibility. Yet, Washington knew better, which is why he refused another term in office and retired with grace to Mount Vernon.

Hillary Clinton is no George Washington. She is the opposite in legitimacy and virtue.

We now know, thanks only to undercover videos taken by independent journalists, that the Clinton campaign coordinated with and funded groups that paid activists to incite violence at Trump rallies and conduct massive voter fraud operations. Again, even in the face of video evidence, the corrupt Big Media refuse to show the American people the truth.

It leads us only to one natural, simple conclusion.

Under President Hillary Clinton, America would become no better than Vladimir Putin’s Russia, with power going to the highest bidder and one’s status dependent on one’s relationship with the queen. For million of Americans not in the good graces of the queen, a President Hillary Clinton will serve only as proof We the People are no longer in charge of our own government.

But for now we still are, America. And Donald Trump is right. It’s time to drain the swamp. 




RNC members agree with Trump: It's rigged

October 18, 2016

Many top GOP officials believe the fix is in.
By Kyle Cheney  10/18/16 01:09 PM EDT

Donald Trump is spending the final weeks of his presidential bid declaring he's the victim of an unprecedented vote-rigging conspiracy meant to elect Hillary Clinton.

Many top Republican Party officials agree.

Interviews with more than two dozen members of the Republican National Committee reveal abiding fears of Democratic voting fraud and widespread belief that at least part of the process or outcome is rigged.

“I do believe that there are elements that will try to rig the election on varying degrees of scale and this will certainly affect the outcome in varying degrees,” said Peter Goldberg, an RNC committeeman from Alaska.

“Should Hillary get ‘elected’ she is immediately delegitimized,” said California RNC Committeeman Shawn Steel in an email. “The 1% of Wall Street Bankers, Clinton Machine and [mainstream media] including your employer, Politico, is part of a massive Left Wing Conspiracy to rig this election.”

Not all of the RNC members who spoke with POLITICO believe the election is rigged. Some contend Trump is wrong about the scale of the conspiracy he describes and others believe he should be targeting his ire at the media, which, they believe, are indeed conspiring against him.

But rather than knock down Trump’s claims, most lauded his focus on ballot integrity and pointed to instances of what they say is fraudulent voter registration as proof that he may be onto something.
Trump's Wisconsin strategy: Burn it all down
“It is a grave concern on a number of fronts,” said Arizona RNC Committeewoman Lori Klein Corbin, “WWhen you have Democrats using Obama's federal forms to register voters who do not have to declare if they are citizens or not and often show no ID.”

Party chairman Reince Priebus has not refuted the notion that the election is rigged; the RNC declined requests for comment.

In some cases, RNC members defending Trump are at odds with Republican secretaries of state – several of whom publicly insisted this week that there’s no cause for concern. These GOP election administrators expressed varying degrees of concern that Trump's so-far-unsubstantiated charges could cast doubt on the integrity of the November election results. (Recent national polls show him trailing Clinton by a significant margin.)

“First of all, I can reassure Donald Trump: I am in charge of elections in Ohio, and they're not going to be rigged. I'll make sure of that,” Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted told CNN Monday. “Our institutions, like our election system, is one of the bedrocks of American democracy. We should not question it or the legitimacy of it. It works very well. In places like Ohio, we make it easy to vote and hard to cheat.”

Husted, who has called Trump’s claim “irresponsible,” has been joined by GOP secretaries of state in Iowa and Georgia in pushing back against the allegations. In recent days House Speaker Paul Ryan has insisted he is “fully confident” in the integrity of the election – prompting a backlash from Trump. And former RNC lawyers said Trump is way off base.

“A national conspiracy to rig the election, I find, is ludicrous,” said Mark Braden, an RNC lawyer from 1979 to 1989. “There is no nationwide conspiracy because there’s no way of doing it.”

“I believe in voter ID laws to ensure fair and free elections. Having said that, there is not and has not been any indication of systemic rigging of elections in America, and it’s extremely dangerous to make those unfounded claims,” said Charlie Spies, one of Braden’s successors as RNC counsel. “Donald Trump should be focused on running an effective campaign rather than making false excuses for losing.”

But Corbin, the Arizona committeewoman, said she agreed with Trump’s warning earlier this month that Democrats may be intentionally allowing undocumented immigrants into the country to vote in the election – though they are no substantiated claims that this is occurring. “This is happening all over the U.S. and we don't even know how many illegals are here presently that will take advantage of these loopholes,” she said.Trump lashes out a Republicans for not buying election rigging lineClose to 20 RNC members pointed to other forms of voter fraud or fraudulent voter registration – concerns that have helped fuel a drive by Republicans to implement voter identification requirements, measures they say will ensure the integrity of elections. Democrats reject those efforts as voter suppression tools, arguing that they predominantly disenfranchise poor and minority voters.

When pressed for evidence of fraud occurring on a mass scale, RNC members pointed to smaller-scale issues that have erupted over the years. Some questioned why a large number of precincts in Philadelphia voted unanimously for Barack Obama in 2012. Others described dead people getting absentee ballot request forms in the mail or people registered to vote in multiple locations. Others still worried that hackers might attempt to manipulate electronic voting data.

Montana GOP chair Jeff Essman pointed to a recent Billings Gazette story in which some voters in Missoula complained of people visiting their houses and offering to mail in ballots for them.

"Here's your voter fraud,” Essman said, though the secretary of state’s office indicated in the article that returning ballots to the elections office on a voter’s behalf is legal.

Other Republicans raised similar anecdotal concerns.

“Yesterday, I saw a member of the Assembly post that one of their neighbors had received a ballot in the mail for her husband that was dead,” said California RNC Committeewoman Harmeet Dhillon. “What we have here is a very poor – and behind the times – secretary of state’s department which does not purge the voter rolls, which does not do anything to police the integrity of the voting.”

Dhillon, a lawyer who has been a poll monitor and plans to oversee a local election this year, emphasized that Republican election attorneys intend to fan out all over the country to monitor polling places to minimize instances of fraud. She added that she isn’t suggesting there’s “an organized effort by the Democratic Party to commit massive voter fraud” and she said she’s confident the results of the election will be “fair.”

Charlie Copeland, chairman of Delaware’s Republican Party said Democrats lack incentive to commit fraud in his state because they vastly outnumber Republicans – but he pointed to reports showing tens of thousands of dead relatives remaining on voter rolls.

“So, what is the true registration, and who is making sure that only ‘real’ voters are voting? This is the situation in Delaware and it is an environment that is ripe with the potential for fraud,” he said. “In other words, with voter rolls this bad and without enough Republicans to oversee the vote, citizen doubt about the validity of the vote of a close election is logical."

Only a handful of RNC members expressed confidence in their own states’ ability to police voter fraud or noted that overwhelming evidence suggests such fraud is rare and inconsequential.
How low can Trump go in the polls?
Oklahoma RNC Committeeman Steve Curry said he’s fully confident in Oklahoma’s policing of elections because of a robust voter ID law, but added he’s concerned about election integrity in states without such restrictions. Tennessee RNC Committeeman Oscar Brock, said he has “complete faith in the electoral process here in this state.” And a spokeswoman for Michigan state party chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel told POLITICO she, too, is unconcerned.
“We have very strong Election Day operations efforts to safeguard against any attempts to defraud our election results. We are confident that these efforts will help protect our state from voter fraud,” said the spokeswoman, Sarah Anderson.

State party chairmen in a number of states have also expressed confidence in the oversight of their elections. Ohio GOP Chairman Matt Borges tweeted his support for his state’s election oversight.

“The vast majority of battleground states have Republicans overseeing their election systems,” said South Carolina GOP chairman Matt Moore. “I think it’s safe to assume they’re not rigging the process either against Donald Trump or for anyone else.”

One thing most RNC members could agree on was their belief that the national media are in league with Democrats in attempting to manipulate voters.

“It depends on what you mean by ‘rigged.’ Our nominee is experiencing an unprecedented onslaught by most of the media in the country,” said Miriam Hellreich, an RNC Committeewoman from Hawaii. “Fox News seems to be the only news outlet reporting on the cloud of deception, distraction and disregard for the truth when it comes to Hillary Clinton's record and her fitness for the Presidency.”

Added Robert Steele, a Michigan RNC committeeman, “If journalists were surgeons, the malpractice dockets would be filled and the patients all dead."




RNC Committeemember Shawn Steel speaks at political science class

October 06, 2016

By

RNC Committeemember Shawn Steel speaks at political science class


California Republican National Committeemember Shawn Steel visited one of UC Berkeley’s political science classes on Wednesday to discuss longstanding world issues, such as anti-Semitism.

The course “Elections 2016” — a one-unit class taught by lecturer Alan Ross — is designed to give students an opportunity to engage in open dialogue about politics and current events. Topics covered this semester include the death penalty and the legalization of marijuana, with Ross bringing in speakers who have varying perspectives to speak to the class. Notable guests include Robert Reich and Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom.

Steel is a regular guest lecturer for Ross’ class, having visited multiple times over the years.

“Shawn does a good job representing his party,” Ross said. “It’s hard to get Republicans to come to Berkeley. … He loves to provoke and get a response out of the kids. There’s an honest dialogue, which I just don’t see anywhere else on campus.”

During his hour-long presentation, Steel spoke in depth about recurring anti-Semitism on college campuses — citing incidents at UCLA, Vassar College and Fort Lewis College. Additionally, Steel pointed out the issue of anti-Semitism at UC Berkeley by referencing posters put up around campus that said “Attention Non-Jews: Pay up and Shut up!” in response to the Palestine DeCal.

“My issue is (that) I’m mostly concerned about human oppression,” Steel said. “When we see the rise of anti-Semitism in Europe and now in America and now at American universities, now here at Berkeley, I’m getting very concerned about that.”

Students were invited to join Steel for a casual Q&A after the lecture at Top Dog, where Steel has personal ties to the owners. Despite the majority of students in the class being Democratic, according to Ross, Steel’s message was well-received among attendees.

“I would say that Shawn Steel’s presentation was very informative and pertinent, even though I do not identify myself as a Republican,” said first-year student Karthik Mouli.

In an interview after the presentation, Steel said he continues to guest lecture in the class because he enjoys visiting UC Berkeley.

“When Ross invited me the first time, I thought I would be stoned, they would attack the stage, you know, the usual stuff,” Steel said. “But they were the nicest bunch of students I’ve ever met.”

A long-time supporter of Berkeley College Republicans, Steel stated that he encouraged more discussions and debates between different political parties on campus. When asked about the political diversity on college campuses throughout America, Steel said that there is a fundamental issue of non-diverse political ideologies among the faculty and administrators.

“There needs to be a balance so that students can make up their own minds,” Steel said. “There’s no choice (between) different political philosophies. … It’s intellectually stifling, it’s uninteresting and it’s basically boring.”

Steel urged students to consider their own futures when voting for a candidate this November, saying it was important to be “selfish” in this election.

“Who’s most likely to get them a job, so they can have a decent future?” Steel said. “That’s really what it comes down to. The key is, what kind of economic condition are we going to have?”




California can lead in the fight against government overreach

September 28, 2016

By JOHN BURTON and SHAWN STEEL / Contributing writers

In California, civil asset forfeiture reforms have always elicited support from elected officials on both sides of the aisle. Two decades ago, we led the nation in ensuring that our state’s civil asset forfeiture laws included necessary protections against government overreach. Since then, however, those carefully crafted protections have been eroded, and this year Sacramento saw a groundswell of bipartisan support to once again strengthen our civil asset forfeiture laws through Senate Bill 443.

The bill’s fate now rests with Gov. Brown, who has until the end of the month to sign it. We hope he does.

Federal civil asset forfeiture laws, enacted during the height of the drug war, authorize law enforcement to seize and permanently keep a person’s property, regardless of whether that person was arrested or charged with a crime, let alone convicted of one.

Seizing people’s property if they’ve only been charged with a crime is un-American, and it’s definitely un-Californian. Democrats and Republicans passed a California law which required that, in most state cases, a person must first be convicted of a crime before that person’s property can be forfeited to the government. This important protection was put in place to ensure and uphold basic due process and property rights, and to curtail potential abuse of the civil asset forfeiture process. To this day, California’s property protections remain among the strongest in the country.

Disappointingly, this wasn’t sufficient to adequately protect personal property or rights.

In the two decades since California enacted these protections, state and local law enforcement agencies have turned to a federal program called “equitable sharing” – a loophole that permits law enforcement agencies to circumvent state protections by working with federal authorities to pursue forfeiture under federal law. Under this program, state and local law enforcement may receive up to 80 percent of a person’s federally forfeited property regardless of whether the person was arrested or convicted of a crime.

As a result, state forfeiture proceeds have remained flat in California, while federal forfeiture revenues here have skyrocketed in recent years. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been federally forfeited, and countless Californians have lost their property to the federal government.

Under SB443, a majority of California’s asset forfeiture cases will require a conviction before law enforcement can permanently take and keep someone’s cash or property. The requirement applies even if local authorities opt to use federal forfeiture law instead of state law.

The asset forfeiture reforms the Legislature approved 20 years ago, and again this year, are a model for bipartisan collaboration and principled lawmaking. We urge Gov. Brown to sign SB443 and re-establish state limits on the government’s authority to forfeit innocent Americans’ property. Not only does the bill live up to our cherished values of justice and due process, but it once again propels California to the forefront of the national, bipartisan forfeiture reform movement. On this, California can, and should, continue to lead.

Sen. John L. Burton (Ret.) is the California Democratic Party Chairman and the author of AB 114, one of the original bills intended to reform California’s civil asset forfeiture laws. Shawn Steel is the former California Republican Party Chairman and current Republican National Committeeman.



Obama Legacy Includes Christian Genocide

September 14, 2016

Of all the U.S. foreign policy catastrophes, Christian genocide will be the enduring legacy of Barack Obama's administration, and Hillary Clinton must share part of the blame.

Clinton was secretary of state when ISIS emerged, when ISIS captured huge portions of Syria and Iraq, and when Christians were targeted for death, expulsion and enslavement.

Who imagined seven years ago that Obama would flee from a stable working democracy in Iraq that quickly turned into an international killing ground, focused on destroying 2,000-year-old Christian communities.

Vice President Joe Biden declared in 2010 that Iraq was one of Clinton's "great achievements." Instead, a true Middle Age international terror force was unleashed on the world, killing hundreds of thousands.

First the Yazidis, an old religion loosely connected to Islam, were massacred, and women and children taken as slaves. Obama-Clinton watched. Only the Kurds took action to save the remaining Yazidis.

In Mosul, Christians were given days to leave their homes or die. Their homes were marked with a Christian symbol giving them notice. Their churches were destroyed. Those who didn't leave after ISIS claimed ownership were cruelly executed or enslaved.

Maronite, Greek-Orthodox, Melkite, Armenian, Chaldean and Syrian Orthodox all face genocide in the Middle East.

During these punishing biblical times, what does the Obama administration worry about the most? Climate change. How does Obama deal with the Christian and Yazidi refugees? Ignore them.

Just last week the State Department announced another 10,000 Syrian migrants would be granted asylum and money to come to America. Most of the migrants are young Muslim men leaving their daughters, wives, sisters and mothers. Of the 10,000 migrants, only 84 Christians were admitted.

This is not an oversight. This is deliberate. To discriminate against a class of genocide victims is wrong, and it may well constitute a war crime.

The State Department claims the Muslim migrants were vetted. But it was Sunni Muslims working for the United Nations who preselected Sunni Muslims to come to America.

Why so few Christians? Christians cannot seek refuge at any U.N. camp because Sunnis control the camps and make life unbearable for nonbelievers.

Congress could do something by requiring the Department of Homeland Security to give preference to groups threatened with actual genocide. That would give priority to Yazidis and Christians. Muslims could stay in safety zones with their families. There is little refuge for Yazidis or Christians in Syria or Iraq.

HR 4017, called the "Save Christians & Yazidis from Genocide Act," is attempting to rectify this. The act, authored by Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, the Orange County Republican, offers the most reasonable solution for Americans who want to help the most endangered populations.

During this week, evangelical leaders, nongovernmental organizations for Christian relief and American Middle East churches are meeting with Rohrabacher to make this a national issue.

Bill Clinton's biggest regret as president is that he didn't act sooner in Rwanda once the 1994 genocide began; 300,000 lives could have been saved.

"It had an enduring impact on me," Clinton said in 2013.

What better question to ask Hillary Clinton than how she could justify watching this genocide while she was secretary of state and now not give its victims priority.

Donald Trump will be getting a lot of free advice. But the human question of genocide is probably most important.



Put Ivanka in Charge – Only the Damsel Can Save Donald in Distress

August 09, 2016


The Donald’s in distress.


After a stunning primary upset and positive momentum from Cleveland, the Republican nominee has returned to his old bad habits: Too much time on Twitter. Too many fights with vanquished primary foes.

Trump’s setbacks – magnified by a media intent on electing Hillary – are emboldening moderate Republicans in
swing districts to abandon the nominee – a nominee that earned more votes than any other Republican in history. If the campaign doesn’t get back on message, a winnable election will be lost.


Luckily, the campaign doesn’t have to look far. Forget the white knight. Only the damsel can save The Donald in distress.

“His best running mate, by the way, would be Ivanka,” Senator Bob Corker quipped last month.

Corker had the right assessment of Ivanka’s potential, if not the wrong position. Ivanka is deliberate, thoughtful and dignified. A focused leader, she’s proven capable of righting the ship once before. And most important of all, the candidate values her counsel.

“She’s one of the smartest people I’ve ever dealt with,” a real estate executive who has negotiated a Trump golf course deal, told Politico in its feature profile of Ivanka. “She was a thorough, diligent, excellent negotiator."

”There’s the obvious: Ivanka appeals to women and Millennials – two groups that could decide the election. Conservatives should worry that she’ll move her father to the center, but more importantly, she moves her father to victory by focusing on bringing more people into a bigger tent.

“Like many of my fellow Millennials, I do not consider myself categorically Republican or Democrat,” she said in her universally well-reviewed convention speech. “More than party affiliation, I vote on based on what I believe is right, for my family and for my country. Sometimes it’s a tough choice.”

“Off the charts” – that’s how pollster Lee Carter described focus-group reaction to Ivanka’s convention speech. “The bottom line is she is an amazing spokeswoman for him.” 

Ivanka's also practical. Her convention dress cost $138 – a not-so-subtle contrast to Hillary’s $12,000 Armani jacket for a speech on income inequality.

But, it’s short-sighted, arguably sexist, to say that Ivanka’s value is strictly limited to “softening” dad’s appeal. Her greatest value might be the opposite: a hard commitment to staying on message and maintaining a disciplined operation.

Back in June, Ivanka took the Corey Lewandowski controversy into her own hands. Ivanka fired the hot-headed deputy who’d proven time and again to be a liability. Her action ended the infighting and gave Paul Manafort full reign to seal the deal on the first ballot. 

Most important of all, the candidate trusts her judgment. Last year, when a Trump presidency still seemed inconceivable, he indicated she’d take over the business operation if he proved victorious.

“One of my father’s greatest talents is the ability to see potential in people, before they see it in themselves,” the 34-year-old businesswoman said in her speech at the RNC Convention. “He taught us that potential vanishes into nothing without effort.”

Should Donald make the effort to put Ivanka in charge, his potential presidency will accelerate. 

Shawn Steel serves as California’s committeeman on the Republican National Committee. 






US Christians key to ending US inaction on Christian genocide

January 20, 2016

Amid the Hutu-led government’s mass slaughter of a half-million Tutsis, the United States had an urgent warning to its diplomats in Rwanda.

“Be careful,” the U.S. State Department advised in a May 1994 memo, “Genocide finding could commit USG (United States Government) to actually ‘do something’.”

Two decades later, our government is once again avoiding the g-word for fear it might force us to actually do something – this time about the Islamic State’s systematic killings of Christians and Yazidis in Syria and Iraq. Over the past two years, ISIS has stormed through Iraqi towns and Syrian cities executing, raping and enslaving anyone who refuses to comply with their Islamo-fascist rule.

Nadia Murad Basee Taha, a 21-year old Iraqi woman who was enslaved by ISIS, recently shared her story of survival with the United Nations Security Council in an effort to convince the international community to intervene. “That night, he beat me up, forced me to undress, and put me in a room with six militants,” she said of her brutal rape and enslavement by Daesh fighters. “They continued to commit crimes to my body until I became unconscious.”

The White House, according to published reports, will soon label these attacks on Yazidis as acts of genocide. Yet, inexplicably, the Obama administration is expected to omit Christians from the list. 

Christian refugees fleeing ISIS – often targets of violence by fellow refugees - are arguably most in need of protection. In one case, a dozen Christian refugees fleeing Libya were thrown overboard by Muslim migrants.  This persistent violence has effectively driven almost all Christians out of refugee camps organized by the United Nations. 

Not only are Christians left out of refugee camps; they are also blocked from safely seeking asylum in other countries. Since the U.S. State Department selects refugees from United Nation refugee lists, Christian exclusion from refugee camps effectively blocks their entry into the United States. Of 2,100 Syrian refugees resettled in the United States, just 34 are Christians

The debate over semantics may seem trivial, or even secondary to a discussion about our response to these atrocities. Yet, genocide scholars are emphatic that the word is a prerequisite to action.   

“Studies by genocide scholars have shown that calling genocide by its proper name, rather than using euphemisms like ‘ethnic cleansing’ or weaker terms like ‘crimes against humanity,’ increases the probability of forceful action to end the crimes by over four times,” writes Dr. Gregory H. Stanton, president of Genocide Watch.

Thankfully, Orange County Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) has introduced legislation that would recognize the violence against Christians and Yazidis in Iraq, Syria, Pakistan, Iran, and Libya as acts of genocide. HR 4017 would also require the Department of Homeland Security to provide expedited visas for these victims of genocide and grant them first priority among refugees. 

Last month, the Knights of Columbus, Armenian National Committee of America and dozens of religious leaders joined the growing number of human rights organizations that support labeling the Islamic State’s war on Christians as genocide. The Republican National Committee has followed their lead with a party resolution unanimously approved at last week’s RNC meeting in Charleston, South Carolina. 

Although this idea would seem uncontroversial, GovTrack gives the bill just a one percent change of passing. Part of the problem is political. As U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power has pointed out, genocide prevention lacks a political constituency. 

“No U.S. president has ever made genocide prevention a priority, and no U.S. president has ever suffered politically for his indifference to its occurrence,” Samantha Power wrote in her 2002 book, “A Problem from Hell.” “It is thus no coincidence that genocide rages on.” 

That’s where evangelical Christians can and should step in. Evangelical voters in early primary states could very well decide the Republican presidential nomination, and in turn, the next president. It’s time for evangelical voters to raise the genocide of Middle East Christians and Yazidis as a campaign issue. 

It may be our only chance to force the United States to “actually do something” to end the genocide. 

Steel, a former chairman of the California Republican Party, is the California national committeeman on the Republican National Committee.



 





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