Monthly Archives: March 2021

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Georgia Senate Passes Bill to Repeal Citizens Arrest Law

Georgia is on its way to repealing a centuries-old citizens arrest law that currently allows citizens of the Peach State to detain others if a crime is committed in their presence “or within their immediate knowledge.”

Monday, HB 479  passed the Georgia Senate with a 52-1 vote. It will head back to the House where a Senate amendment giving business owners the right to detain suspected thieves will be voted open. 

Akron Man Wants Fentanyl Declared a Weapon of Mass Destruction

An Akron man whose son died of an overdose in 2015 is on a crusade to take fentanyl, a ultra-lethal drug manufactured mostly in China and by Mexican cartels, off the streets for good.

Motivated by his son’s tragic death, James Rauh founded an organization called Families Against Fentanyl, which is taking a unique approach to fighting the manufacture and import of that drug. 

Fed Up with COVID: 44 Percent Increase in Michigan Teacher Retirements

Michigan has seen a huge spike in teacher retirements during the past year, with many of those teachers citing COVID-19 restrictions as the reason for calling it quits. 

“From August through February, there was a 44 percent increase in midyear retirements compared with the same period in 2019-2020 as 749 teachers left public school classrooms in the middle of the school year, state data show,” Crain’s Business Detroit reported. 

Six Ohio High School Teachers Won’t Face Charges After ‘Offensive’ Discussion of Student

Six high school teachers have been placed on leave, but will not face criminal charges, after a video of the two of those teachers surfaced in which they discussed the physical appearance of one of their students. 

“Rocky River police decided not to pursue charges against members of Rocky River High School staff placed on administrative leave after video surfaced on them talking about a student ‘in an inappropriate manner,'” Cleveland.com said. 

Georgia Dem Rep Arrested After Banging on Gov. Kemp’s Door

A Georgia House Democrat was arrested Thursday night after repeatedly banging on Republican Gov. Brian Kemp’s office door. 

Rep. Park Cannon (D-GA-58) was banging on the door in protest of an election integrity bill signed into law Thursday. Democrats contend that the bill constitutes “voter suppression.” 

Michigan Senate Bill Would Codify Restaurant Closures During Pandemics

After a year of strict lockdowns imposed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the state Senate wants to codify rules for business closings in the event of another epidemic. 

“If this state has a test positivity rate of less than 3% for not less than 7 consecutive days or if less than 3% of hospital beds in this state are being used to treat individuals with coronavirus for not less than 7 consecutive days, the emergency order must not place a limitation on indoor dining occupancy or on a meeting or event held at the qualified establishment,” SB 250 says. 

Minnesota Supreme Court Makes Controversial Rape Decision

The Minnesota Supreme Court earlier this week made a controversial ruling on a case involving a convicted rapist, ordering a new trial on the grounds that the woman involved in the incident voluntarily intoxicated herself prior to the sexual encounter. 

Francois Khalil was convicted of third-degree criminal sexual conduct involving a victim who was impaired in 2019, stemming from an incident in 2017. The woman involved in the case said the two had been partying when she blacked out, and woke up to Khalil raping her. He was sentenced to five years in prison by a jury in Hennepin County. 

Whitmer Vetoes Bill That Would Have Curbed Agency’s Emergency Powers

Embattled Michigan Gov. Gretchen Wilson (D), facing scrutiny for secret deals made with departing state employees and her COVID-19 nursing home policies, vetoed a bill that would have limited the executive power of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS).

Senate Bill 1 would have capped emergency pandemic orders by MDHHS at 28 days, causing them to automically expire unless they were ectended by the legislature. But Whitmer, who was long ago stripped of her emergency pandemic powers by the Michigan Supreme Court, veteod the bill, ensuring that her executive branch has unfettered power to give mandate emergency orders. 

Man Arrested with Six Guns in Atlanta Grocery Store

A day after a man in Colorado was charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder after opening fire in a grocery store, a man was arrested in Atlanta after bringing six guns and body armor into a Publix. 

“Preliminary investigation indicates the male entered the location openly carrying a rifle and entered the bathroom,” according to the Atlanta Police Department (APD). “A witness observed the male and alerted store management who then notified police. When the male exited the bathroom, arriving units immediately detained the male.”

Jury Selected in Chauvin Trial, Opening Arguments Set to Begin

Opening arguments are set to begin Monday in the trial of former Minneapolis Police officers Derek Chauvin, accused of killing George Floyd, after weeks of jury selection. 

The jury selection process in the high-profile trail was marred with controversy after the city of Minneapolis awarded Floyd’s family $27 million to settle a civil lawsuit during the criminal proceedings. 

COVID Vaccine Available for All Tennessee Adults on April 5

According to Gov. Bill Lee (R), all people over age 16 will be eligible to receive the coveted COVID-19 vaccine no later than April 5.

“The federal government has asked us to make sure every adult can receive access by May 1, and Tennessee will beat that deadline,” Lee said in a Monday press conference. 

Using Boulder Tragedy, Klobuchar Promises Action on Gun Control

The morning after a mass shooting that left 10 dead in Colorado, Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) is using the tragedy to push a left-wing gun control agenda. 

“Since we announced a hearing on gun safety, there have been two mass shootings. That doesn’t include the hundreds affected by gun violence every day. Thoughts & prayers aren’t enough. We need to act & it starts with a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing I’m heading to right now,” Klobuchar said Tuesday morning on Twitter

Bomb Threats Called into Hampton Courthouses for Second Time This Month

For the second time this month, Hampton’s courthouses have been subject to a bomb threat, forcing occupants to evacuate. 

“Hampton Police and [the Hampton Fire Department] are investigating a bomb threat at Hampton General District Court. All three court houses have been evacuated as a precaution and surrounding streets are closed. Call received at 8:29 a.m. Nothing further at this time,” according to a Tweet from the Hampton Police Department (HPD). 

Crime Syndicate Targeting Hispanics Busted in Nashville

The Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) in conjunction with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) indicted six suspects linked to violent robberies over a period of years that specifically targeted Nashville’s Hispanic community. 

“According to police, the six suspects were linked to 150 holdups that primarily targeted Latino families. It is estimated that the group robbed more than $150,000 in cash and belongings from victims and committed 29 violent robberies,” WKRN reported. “Police said the robberies occurred in parking lots at first and evolved into victims’ homes. Armed suspects would often make their entry through unlocked sliding glass doors.”

Left Wing Blog Drops ‘Believe All Women’, Says Cuomo Shouldn’t Resign

A fascinating article in the far-left blog Virginia Mercury says that New York’s Democrat Governor Andrew Cuomo should not resign amid mounting sexual harassment claims from scores of women, because Virginia’s Democrat Governor Ralph Northam survived his own racism scandal. 

According to the blog, persuing and implementing the left-wing agenda is more important than Democrat politicians continuing their charade of signalling virtue on issues like women’s rights and anti-racism. 

Minnesota House Bill Would Spend $475 Million to ‘End Systemic Racism’

A newly proposed bill in the Minnesota House would provide nearly half a billion dollars to state officials to settle perceived racial inequities. 

HF 784 is a massive spending bill written for the purpose of “appropriating money directed at ending systemic racism [and] adopting provisions that address racial injustice and systemic racism.”

Massage Parlors Attacked by Gunman Busted in Prostitution Stings

According to documents released Friday, the two massage parlors targeted by a deranged gunman in Atlanta Tuesday had both been subjects of prostitution stings by police, despite claims to the contrary by Atlanta’s mayor. 

“As far as we know in Atlanta, these are legally operating businesses that have not been on our radar,” Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said after the shootings. “Not on the radar of [the Atlanta Police Department].”

Whitmer Faces Bipartisan Criticism over Lack of Transparency

Embattled Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), who faced backlash for her overbearing COVID-19 shutdown orders, and who is now facing scrutiny for her COVID-19 nursing home policies, has a new issue to contend with: growing calls for transparency from her administration. 

“Michigan is not just out of the mainstream. We’re out of the universe, basically, on limiting the access for our citizens to better know how its government works,” state Sen. Jeremy Moss (D-Southfield) told Michigan Live.

Biden Meets with Abrams, Asian American Leaders in Georgia

President Joe Biden spent part of his Friday in Georgia meeting with failed gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, and leaders of the Asian American community. 

Along with Vice President Kamala Harris, Biden’s visit was aimed at offering “support to the Asian American community following a string of shootings at three Atlanta-area spas that left eight people dead, six of them women of Asian descent,” according to WKRN. 

Michigan County Experimenting with Social Distancing Guidelines in Schools

After a damning New York Times report in which a Virginia Tech virologist said that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) six-foot social distancing guidelines appeared to be pulled out of “thin air,” one Michigan county is experimenting with three feet of social distancing in schools.

“The Kent County Health Department is in the middle of a study that officials hope will reduce the social distance requirements in all pre-k through 8th grade classrooms,” a WZZM report said. “During the six-week pilot study, any student that has been within three feet of a COVID-positive student for 15 minutes or more — within 48 hours — must quarantine at home for 10 days. Before that, quarantine was triggered at a distance of six feet.”

Chauvin Lawyer Requests to Move Trial from Hennepin County

Earlier this week, the attorney for Derek Chauvin requested that the ex-Minneapolis Police officer’s trial be moved from Hennepin County due to the risk of a prejudiced jury. 

“You have elected officials — the governor, the mayor — making incredibly prejudicial statements about my client, this case,” Eric Nelson told Hennepin County District Court Judge Peter Cahill. “You have the city settling a civil lawsuit for a record amount of money. And the pre-trial publicity is just so concerning.”

Poll: Gov. Lee Popular Among GOP Primary Voters, But Several Decisions Very Unpopular

According to a Tennessee Star poll of 1001 likely Republican primary voters in Tennessee conducted by Triton Research from March 5 to March 10, Gov. Bill Lee (R) is fairly popular, but many of his policies are not. 

Lee has a 69.9 percent favorability rate among those likely voters. That number is 20 points shy of former president Donald J. Trump’s 89.7 percent favorability – the highest ever for the forty fifth president in a Star poll – but still relatively high. 

Judge in Chauvin Trial Threatens to Boot Media for ‘Irresponsible’ Reporting

Hennepin County District Court Judge Peter Cahill, who is presiding over the high-profile trial of former Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin, had strong words for the members of the media inside his courtroom Wednesday. 

“It’s been brought to the court’s attention that the media has been reporting specific details trying to look at counsels’ – the documents, computers, post-it notes – on counsel tables,” Cahill said. “That’s absolutely inappropriate. Any media who are in this room will refrain from even attempting to look at what is on counsel tables, either for the state or for the defense.”

Suspect in Custody After Deadly Rampage at Georgia Massage Parlors

Details are emerging after a man was arrested for allegedly committing a series of killings in Georgia on Tuesday.

Robert Alan Long, 21, of Woodstock, was arrested in south Georgia after he allegedly killed eight people of Asian descent in shootings at three different massage parlors.

Michigan Democrat Falsely Links Georgia Shootings to Anti-Asian Racism

A Democrat Congressman from Michigan falsely linked Tuesday’s deadly shootings at three massage parlors in Georgia to anti-Asian racism, a motive specifically ruled out by police Wednesday morning. 

“The surge in anti-Asian hate crimes is horrifying and unacceptable. We all play a role in supporting the [Asian American Pacific Islander] community. I’m glad the House passed a resolution to condemn racism against Asian Americans. The tragedy in Atlanta requires us all to speak out to #StopAsianHate,” Rep. Dan Kildee (D-MI-05) said on Twitter. 

Illegal Aliens Sentenced for Running Meth Lab in Georgia

Three illegal aliens have been sentenced for operating a methamphetamine lab out of their home in Norcross, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ). 

“Zury Brito-Arroyo, Bonifacio Brito-Maldonado, and Roberto Arroyo-Garcia have been sentenced to federal prison for manufacturing and distributing methamphetamine in a home where a minor child resided and within 1,000 feet of a school,” a Monday press release said. “The three men, all of whom had illegally entered the United States from Mexico, utilized a family home in Norcross less than 200 feet from an elementary school to operate a methamphetamine laboratory.”

Trump Hits All Time High in GOP Favorability in Tennessee

According to a Tennessee Star poll of 1001 likely Tennessee Republican primary voters, former President Donald J. Trump has all-time high approval rating among the GOP in the state, more than two months after leaving office.

The poll found that 89.7 percent of those voters have a favorable impression of the 45th president, compared to 7.4 percent who view him unfavorably.

Burchett Concerned that Democrat Fundraising Platform ActBlue Aiding Foreign Terrorists

A Tennessee Republican is concerned that money donated to the Democrat Party via its universal donation portal might be ending up in the hands of foreign terrorists, according to a letter penned to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Attorney General Merrick Garland.

“The pro-BDS movement Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) currently uses ActBlue to solicit donations,” Rep. Tim Burchett (R-TN-02) said in his letter. “PACBI is also affiliated with the Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC), an organization known to have ties with foreign terrorist groups such as Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.”

Chauvin Defense Seeks to Pause Jury Selection After Floyd Family Civil Settlement

After the family of George Floyd received a $27 million settlement Friday from the city of Minneapolis stemming from his death in police custody, the attorney for the police officer charged in Floyd’s death is asking for a continuance in the jury selection process. 

“Defense attorney Eric Nelson expressed deep concern that jurors already chosen and those yet to be chosen will be prejudiced should they learn of the settlement, thereby denying his client his right to a fair trial,” The Star Tribune reported. 

Whitmer Executive Order Says Secret Severance Pay Packages for State Employees Can Continue

In defiance of calls for transparency from state lawmakers, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat, is doubling down on the state’s policy of providing secretive severance packages to state officials.

In an executive directive, Whitmer states that agreements and payments can be used for a variety of purposes:

Separation agreements are used for many purposes, including to define the terms of employment during a period of transition; to secure the return of state property; and to mitigate legal exposure and potential costs to taxpayers through a release of claims against the state. (emphasis added)

Third-Degree Murder Charge Reinstated Against Chauvin

Hennepin County District Court Judge Peter Cahill Thursday overturned his own decision to drop third-degree murder charges against former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin after an appeal from state prosecutors. 

“The dispute over the third-degree murder charge revolved around wording in the law that references an act ’eminently dangerous to others,'” Spectrum News reported. “Cahill’s initial decision to dismiss the charge had noted that Chauvin’s conduct might be construed as not dangerous to anyone but Floyd.”

Dueling Time-Change Bills Moving in Georgia General Assembly

In a bipartisan vote last week, the Georgia State Senate voted to end daylight savings time. 

H.B. 100, which ” provide[s] that this state shall observe standard time year round until such time as Congress authorizes the states to observe daylight savings time,” passed with 46 yes votes and only seven no votes. Three members of the Senate abstained. The bill now heads to the state House. 

Reporters Barred from Deadly ‘George Floyd’ Autonomous Zone in Minneapolis

Protestors have quietly set up an “autonomous zone” near the George Floyd memorial in Minneapolis, according to one reporter who visited the scene. 

“The George Floyd memorial is an ‘autonomous zone’ with several blocks controlled by activists. Police don’t even go in. We tried to respectfully get video-but left after two people confronted us near the barricades. Later learned many protestors don’t even feel comfortable there,” Brian Entin of News Nation Now reported. 

MTSU Students Charged After Allegedly Stealing $114k from Student Groups

Two students at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) have been indicted by a grand jury for allegedly stealing more than $100,000 from the school over a period of several years. 

“Mohamed Osman and Mohamed Gure were presidents of MTSU’s Somali Students Association, according to investigators,” WKRN said. “During their time in office, the Comptroller’s Office said they submitted at least 85 false invoices to MTSU, many of which were for non-existent vendors, to obtain reimbursements totaling $82,200 in student activity fee funds.”

Man Arrested After Homemade Bomb Detonated in Michigan High School

A man has been arrested after a student detonated a homemade explosive Newaygo High School Monday.

“33-year-old David Robert Daniel Saylor was charged Tuesday with one count of manufacture or possession of Molotov Cocktail and one count of contributing to the delinquency of a minor,” WZZM reported. “Saylor is also charged as a habitual offender.”

Judge Allows ‘Spark of Life’ Evidence in Chauvin Trial

Hennepin County District Court Judge Peter Cahill Wednesday morning decided to allow “spark of life” evidence on behalf of the prosecution in the highly-anticipated trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, but warned prosecutors not to go too far. 

“We’re all familiar with the ‘spark of life’ doctrine – that essentially, like you say, this is not just a person who we label ‘victim’ and we depersonalize him – that Mr. Floyd in this case isn’t entitled to have the jury realize that he was a human being, he was loved, he had a family,” Cahill said. “I think if it’s basically evidence that will not call for cross examination, I think that’s generally well within the bounds.”

Tennessee National Guard Troops Deployed to Middle East

After an airstrike in Syria at the end of February, the Biden administration is mobilizing the National Guard – including one unit from Tennessee – for deployment to the Middle East. 

“Soldiers from the Tennessee National Guard’s 1st Battalion, 181st Field Artillery Regiment, deployed on Sunday for a 10-month tour of the Middle East,” Associated Press reported. 

Prosecutor Says Whitmer Could Face Criminal Charges over Nursing Home Deaths

Facing a situation similar to New York’s embattled Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) is now under scrutiny from prosecutors about COVID-19 deaths in Michigan’s nursing homes. 

“If we find there’s been willful neglect of office if we find there’s been reckless endangerment of a person’s life by bringing them in then we would move forward with charges against the Governor,” Macomb County Prosecutor Peter Lucido told WXZY. “Of course, we would. Nobody’s above the law in this state.”

Georgia Southern University Preparing to Return to ‘Normal’ Operation

One publicly-funded university in Georgia says it plans to resume normal operations in the fall semester.

“For Fall 2021, we are currently planning for a full return to campus, which means resuming ‘normal’ operations with in-person instruction, research, events, service, and activities, and full dining and housing operations,” Georgia Southern University President Dr. Kyle Marrero said in a message to students, faculty, and staff according to WTOC. 

Michigan Republican Rep Leading Charge to Give National Guard Troops Edible Food

After reports that National Guard troops deployed to Washington, D.C. have been forced to eat undercooked meat and other “disgusting” foods, a Republican U.S. Congressman from Michigan is taking a stand.

“Recently, there have been a cascade of reports describing the food being provided to our soldiers as poorly prepared, oftentimes inedible, and unacceptable,” Rep. Bill Huizenga (R-MI-02) said in a letter addressed to Acting Secretary of the Army John E. Whitley and Chief of the National Guard Bureau General Daniel R. Hokanson. 

FEMA to Run Mass COVID Vaccination Clinic in Cleveland

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is set to dole out thousands of doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in Cleveland, according to Friday reports.

“A mass coronavirus vaccination center will open on March 17 at Cleveland State University’s Wolstein Center, with the capability to vaccinate 6,000 people a day,” Cleveland.com reported. 

Michigan Likely to Extend In-Person Work Ban

As some states return to business as usual while the COVID-19 pandemic becomes more manageable, Michigan is likely keep strict safety measures in place for a while longer. 

One of those measures is a ban on working in person, first issued by the Michigan Occupational Safety and Administration (MIOSHA) in October, after the state Supreme Court struck down several orders by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D). That order is set to expire in mid-April, but that does not mean Michiganders will be able to return to work. 

‘Automatic’ Voter Registration Bill Heads to Minnesota House Floor

A bill that would make voter registration automatic is headed the floor the of Minnesota House of Representatives. 

“Members approved two bills with nearly identical language that would implement automatic voter registration in Minnesota by using information being collected during transactions with government agencies, such as getting a driver’s license, to register those who are eligible,” according to the state House’s website. “People would have 20 days to decline the registration.”

Georgia Senate Introduces Bill Making It a Felony to Block Traffic During a Protest

After a summer of rioting nationwide, Georgia lawmakers have introduced a bill that would make it a felony to block a sidewalk or a street after being directed to disperse by a police officer.

According to the text of SB 171, “purposely or recklessly obstructing any highway or street in such a way as to render it impassable without unreasonable inconvenience or hazard and fails or refuses to remove the obstruction after he or she receives a reasonable official request or the order of a peace officer to do so,  shall be guilty of a felony and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by an imprisonment for not less than one nor more than five years or a fine of not less than $1,000.00 nor more than $5,000.00, or both.”

Georgia House Passes Bill to Bolster Absentee Ballot Laws

Georgia’s Republican-controlled House of Representatives passed a bill Monday aimed at making elections more secure, specifically in the way of absentee voting.

House Bill 531 passed Monday with a 97-72 vote, and along with sweeping reforms related to absentee voting, strips the Secretary of State from his role as chairman of the State Elections Board. That person will, if the bill passes and is signed into law, be chosen by the General Assembly.

State of Michigan Charges Woman for Caring for Animals Without Permit, Kills Animals

Six animals were killed by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) after they were confiscated from an Emmet County farm, where the agency says the owner did not have a permit to rehabilitate the animals. 

“Kei Ju Farm, located in Petoskey, is widely known for its open-door policy for both community members and animals,” Petoskey News reported. “This year, the DNR received a complaint about owner, Julie Hall, rehabilitating wild animals on the farm. The farm is not a Michigan Licensed Rehabilitation facility.”

Michigan Republican House Rep Calls for Transparency in Former MDHHS Separation Deal

A Republican member of the state House of Representatives is calling for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) to reveal to the public the agreement it had with former director Robert Gordon, who abruptly resigned on February 22. 

“I am calling on the Department today to release to the public the separation agreement between Governor [Gretchen] Whitmer’s administration and former MDHHS Director Robert Gordon as well as any other similar agreements made with other public officials,” state Rep. Steve Johnson (R-MI-72) said in Tuesday letter to MDHHS. 

Trump-Friendly Groups Ready to Take on Big Tech

A trio of pro-Trump groups are ready to wage a massive battle against Silicon Valley titans of industry after the former president was drummed off social media prior to leaving office. 

“The Center for American Restoration, the new organization stood up by former Trump administration official Russ Vought, is leading a coalition of groups calling for a ‘proliferation of legislative activity’ to reform Big Tech,” Axios reported. 

Former Republican Congressman Endorses Ending Qualified Immunity

A former Republican congressman known for his public spats with former president Donald J. Trump has expressed his support for a bill introduced by two progressive Democrats that would end qualified immunity for law enforcement officers. 

“End qualified immunity. Thanks to [Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA-07)] and [Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA)] for reintroducing our bill in this Congress,” Justin Amash said on Twitter.