Battleground State News

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Grand Valley State Mandates COVID Vaccine for Students, Faculty, Staff

Though the COVID-19 vaccine does not stop the transmission or contraction of the virus, students, faculty, and staff at Grand Valley State University (GVSU) will be forced to take the experimental jab in order to return to campus this fall. 

Everyone on campus is expected to receive the shot by September 30, WZZM reported. The school will provide numerous opportunities to get vaccinated at free at pop-up clinics.

Arizona U.S. Attorney’s Report: 73 Percent of Illegal Aliens Arrested for Reentry Have Criminal Records in U.S

A shocking report released by the U.S. District Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona shows that 73 percent of illegal aliens who were arrested for illegal reentry into the United States in June have prior criminal records here. 

According to the report, “241 individuals were charged in June with illegal reentry,” and “178 of those 241 individuals had previously been convicted of non-immigration criminal offenses in the U.S.”

Moderate Clyburn Takes Shots at Progressive Nina Turner After Ohio Election Loss

The primary election might be finished in Ohio’s 11th District, but Rep. James Clyburn (D-MD-06), the third-highest ranking Democrat in Congress, is still making his presence felt.

“These are creations, and to say all we got out of endorsing Joe Biden was a federal holiday? That’s the kind of BS that sent me to Cleveland, I was going to stay right here in South Carolina minding my business until I got called stupid,” Clyburn told Axios. 

Polk County Sheriffs Arrest Several Disney World Employees in Child Sex Sting

Detectives from the Polk County Sheriff’s office, in conjunction with several other law enforcement entities, ran a sting operation to catch child sex predators between July 27 and August 1.

Dubbed “Operation Child Protector,” law enforcement posed as 13 and 14-year-old girls online, and made contact with several suspect online. When the suspects attempted to meet up with the “girls,” they were taken into custody. 

Virginia Democratic Gubernatorial Nominee McAuliffe Enlists Election Skeptic Stacey Abrams to Help Fundraise

After attempting to tie his Republican opponent Glenn Youngkin to former President Donald J. Trump’s challenge of the 2020 election results, former Virginia governor and current Democrat candidate for governor Terry McAuliffe has enlisted fundraising support from a notorious election skeptic.

During last week’s back-and-forth between the candidates that featured McAuliffe attacking Youngkin over his support for Trump and what McAuliffe’s campaign characterized as Trump’s election lies, and Youngkin responding by blasting McAuliffe for saying the 2000 election was stolen by then-President George W. Bush in his capacity as chairman of the Democratic National Convention (DNC), Democrat activist and former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams was sending fundraising emails on behalf of McAuliffe.

Youngkin Campaign Slams McAuliffe for Questioning Results of 2000 Election

After Democrat gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe launched an ad blasting his Republican opponent Glenn Youngkin for making election integrity a central focus of his campaign, Youngkin’s campaign has responded in kind. 

McAuliffe, who served as Virginia’s governor from 2014 to 2018, also headed the Democratic National Committee (DNC) from 2001 to 2005. During that time, he claimed that Republicans stole the 2000 election from then-candidate Al Gore, in favor of former President George W. Bush. 

Virginia Gov. Northam Won’t Mandate Masks, Signaling Bipartisan Response to New COVID Cases

Democrat and Republican governors alike are promising not to implement new mask mandates as COVID-19 cases rise again. 

“All Virginians should consider wearing a mask in public indoor settings where there is increased risk of [COVID-19] transmission, as the new [CDC] guidance recommends. This is not a requirement, but a recommendation,” Gov. Ralph Northam (D) said Thursday on Twitter. 

Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar Introduces ‘Guaranteed Income’ Bill

Amid the ongoing feud between progressive Democrats and their more moderate counterparts over a $3.5 trillion infrastructure bill and legislation to abolish the filibuster, one progressive House Democrat is forging ahead. 

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN-05) Friday introduced a bill that would pilot universal basic income programs in certain geographic areas, before taking the program national within the next seven years. 

Ohio AG Announces ‘Drug Dropoff Day’ to Combat Opioid Use

In response to a “surge” in opioid overdoses in Ohio in 2020, Attorney General Dave Yost Friday announced the state’s first “Drug Dropoff Day.”

“You know, a lot of opioid addictions actually start out of the family medicine cabinet,” Yost said in a video posted to his Twitter account. 

Georgia Gov. Kemp Says No New Lockdowns Coming, Encourages Vaccination

There will not be any new shutdowns or mask mandates in Georgia, as concerns over the recent uptick in COVID-19 cases grows. 

“Georgia will not lock down or impose statewide mask mandates,” Gov. Brian Kemp said Wednesday on Twitter. “As the first state in the country to reopen over a year ago, we’ve proven that Georgians know how to come together and protect themselves and their loved ones.”

Virginia Gubernatorial Candidate McAuliffe Accepts Endorsement from Another Far-Left Group

Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D), the current Democrat Party nominee for the same position, accepted an endorsement from another radically far-left group this week.

“Proud to be endorsed by [New Virginia Majority]. Together, we are going to keep Virginia moving forward. That starts with building a more inclusive Commonwealth that lifts up working people across Virginia. Onward!” McAuliffe said on Twitter. 

Virginia Department of Health Teams Up with Washington Football Team for Vaccine Promotion

The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) teamed up Wednesday with the Washington Football Team to offer incentives for fans to get vaccinated against COVID-19 in Richmond. 

“We are pleased to work with the Washington Football Team to help ensure that Training Camp is a fun, safe, and educational environment for everyone in attendance,” State Health Commissioner M. Norman Oliver, M.D. said, according to a press release. “Plus, with our mobile vaccination site set up all week at Training Camp, this is another wonderful opportunity for anyone who is able to get vaccinated to do so. Your best protection from COVID-19 is to get vaccinated.”

Florida Rep. Byron Donalds Trades Barbs Chris Cuomo on Vaccine Choice

A Florida congressman joined CNN Tuesday evening to debate host Chris Cuomo on his decision not to take the COVID-19 vaccine. 

“Do you feel responsible for spreading a message where [you say] ‘I’m not gonna take [the vaccine] because I don’t care what Biden wants. Byron Donald’s not gonna take it ’cause he doesn’t care what Biden wants?'” Cuomo asked Rep. Byron Donalds (R-FL-19). “Do you think that’s a good message for people to hear?” 

Minnesota Town Mandates Masks for Two to 12 Year Olds in Schools

Rochester Public Schools Tuesday said that it will require students aged two to 12 to wear masks inside all school facilities during the upcoming school year, citing the fact that the COVID-19 has not been approved for children between those ages. 

“When we have the opportunity as is anticipated to vaccinate younger children, and those rates of vaccination are sufficiently high, we could remove the requirement for our youngest learners,” Interim Superintendent Kent Pekel said. “So I wish I could tell the board that this is the last time that you’d be dealing with this, but I think it’s very likely that we need to continue to be responsive to this situation over time.”

Georgia Spa Shooter Receives Four Life Sentences After Guilty Plea

The man who killed eight in a rampage against massage parlor employees in Georgia received four life sentences. 

Robert Aaron Long formalized his deal, agreeing to plead guilty in exchange for being spared the death penalty, in Cherokee County Tuesday morning, according to several reports. He received 35 years tacked onto the life sentences, and will not be eligible for parole. 

Florida Gov. DeSantis Holds Roundtable with Experts to Discuss Masks in Schools

Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) Monday held a press conference with medical professionals, a concerned parent, a student to discuss mask mandates in schools for the upcoming school year. 

Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, a Professor of Medicine at Stanford University and research associate at the National Bureau of Economics Research (NEBR), H. Cody Meissner, MD, a pediatrician and Chief of the Division of Pediatric Infectious Disease and Professor of Pediatrics at the Tufts University School of Medicine, and Mark McDonald, MD, a clinical child psychiatrist, all participated in the roundtable.

FBI Investigating Agent Who Allegedly Violently Assaulted Wife

The lead investigator in the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) case against more than a dozen men who allegedly plotted to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) has legal troubles of his own, as reported by The Detroit News. 

“An FBI agent at the center of the investigation into the plot to kidnap and kill Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is accused of smashing his wife’s head against a nightstand and choking her after a dispute stemming from their attendance at a swingers’ party, according to court records,” that news outlet reported this week. 

Judge Will Decide Whether to Keep Ohio’s Pandemic Unemployment Benefits

A Franklin County judge may reimplement Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) benefits in Ohio after they were ended by Gov. Mike DeWine (R) in June. 

The extra $300 per week in unemployment benefits, part of a federal government program to help Americans survive the COVID-19 pandemic, officially ended in Ohio on June 26. DeWine cited a labor shortage in the state, as most businesses reopened as normal after pandemic restrictions were lifted. 

Minnesota Sen. Klobuchar Cosponsors Bill to Stop Spread of ‘Misinformation’ on Social Media

A Minnesota senator is cosponsoring a bill that would punish social media companies for allowing the spread of “medical misinformation.” 

“These are some of the biggest, richest companies in the world and they must do more to prevent the spread of deadly vaccine misinformation,” Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) said. “The coronavirus pandemic has shown us how lethal misinformation can be and it is our responsibility to take action.”

Georgia County GOP Clashes With Raffensperger After Office Brushes Off Voter Fraud

Just days after Secretary of State’s office chief operation officer Gabriel Sterling brushed off concrete proof of illegal voting in the 2020 election, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) was met with protests in Bibb County. 

GOP protestors in Bibb County held up signs and demanded a full forensic audit of the vote tallies in the Peach State as Raffensperger spoke to the Bibb County GOP, according to WMAZ. 

Cincinnati Right to Life Group Speaks with The Ohio Star About Biden Town Hall at Catholic College

Right to Life of Greater Cincinnati hosted a protest Wednesday night at Mount St. Joseph University, a Catholic college that hosted a CNN town hall with President Joe Biden. 

The Ohio Star spoke with the pro-life group’s executive director Meg DeBlase Wednesday, who has been leading the group’s response to Biden’s visit. Despite being Catholic, Biden supports abortion. His visit to the university is being viewed by many as tacit support for abortion by Mount St. Joseph. 

Virginia Gov. Candidate McAuliffe Accepts Endorsement from Abortion Group That Supports Defunding Police

Monday, former Virginia governor and current gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat, accepted an endorsement from National Abortion and Reproduction Rights Action League Virginia (NARAL). 

“I’m proud to be endorsed by [NARAL Virginia],” he said. “With a right-wing Supreme Court ready to hack away at the right to choose and Glenn Youngkin promising to ban abortion, reproductive freedom is at stake in this race. I’ll always fight to protect the right to choose.”

Former Detroit Police Chief Bashes Whitmer in Speech to GOP Group

The former chief of police in Detroit slammed Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) in a speech to the Kent County Republican Party Monday night. 

“The young people of today don’t want to sit at home and get free money,” James Craig said. “They want to experience the world, and in fact, they want to change the world. You can’t change the world sitting at home in your pajamas getting free money waiting on Queen Gretchen to issue her royal decree.”

Pro-Life Group Speaks Out Against Biden’s Planned Speech at Ohio Catholic College

A pro-life group in Cincinnati is speaking out against a Catholic college that is set to host President Joe Biden for a town hall Wednesday night. 

Mount St. Joseph University is scheduled to host the 46th president, much to the chagrin of Right to Life of Greater Cincinnati, a pro-life group that is asking local supporters of their cause to call Archbishop Dennis Schnurr in protest. 

Georgia Senate to Hold Hearing on Buckhead ‘Divorce’ from Atlanta

The Buckhead neighborhood’s efforts to secede from Atlanta have cleared another hurdle, as the state Senate will convene to debate a pair of bills aimed at separating the suburb from the city during its upcoming special session. 

“Bill sponsor Sen. Brandon Beach (R-Alpharetta), who has served in the state legislature’s upper chamber for ten years, told Breitbart News he has ‘never seen’ Buckhead cityhood gain so much traction before,” Breitbart reported. 

‘Let Them Die:’ Fairfax NAACP Leader Wishes Death on Anti-CRT Parents

Fairfax’s NAACP Vice President Michelle Leetma appeared outside a Fairfax County Public Schools board meeting Thursday night, where she wished death upon those who do not want Critical Race Theory taught in public schools. 

“So let’s meet and remain steadfast in speaking truth, tearing down double-standards, and refuting double-talk,” Leetma said. “Let’s not allow any double-downing on lies. Let’s prepare our children for a world they deserve.” 

DeWine Signs Bill Banning Ohio Public Colleges from Forcing Student Vaccinations

Gov. Mike DeWine (R) Thursday signed HB 244 into law, a bill that disallows schools and universities from forcing their students to be vaccinated against COVID-19. 

Until the three COVID-19 vaccines, developed by Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, and Pfizer, respectively, receive full approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), that law will stand, according to The Cincinnati Enquirer. 

25-Year-Old East Lansing Mayor Resigns to Go Back to School

The 25-year-old mayor of East Lansing, appointed to the position in 2020 during a year of turmoil for the city, is resigning in August in order to further his education.

“My program begins in late August, so I will be stepping down from my position as mayor, and as a member of the city council, because I will be unable to attend four regular and two discussion-only meetings before my term is over,” Mayor Aaron Stephens said in a Facebook post. 

75 Florida Teachers Sign Petition Vowing to Defy Critical Race Theory Ban

As The Tennessee Star reported, the Zinn Education Project,  a nonprofit that pushes social justice curriculum in schools, released a petition signed by more than 5000 teachers nationwide who vow to continue to teach Critical Race Theory, even if it’s banned in their schools. 

“Lawmakers in at least 21 states are attempting to pass legislation that would require teachers to lie to students about the role of racism, sexism, heterosexism, and oppression throughout U.S. history,” the petition says.

Loudoun County Diverts Cash from Low Income Students to ‘Racial Equity’ Training

As the battle over Critical Race Theory rages on between parents and Loudoun County Public Schools, it has been revealed that that school system diverted funds from low income students for “racial equity” training. 

The school district paid The Equity Collaborative, a North Carolina-based consulting firm, $24,000 to teach six virtual training sessions on equality between February and April. 

Record Numbers of Migrants Dying of Heat in Arizona Borderland

As the Biden Administration continues to usher in a surge of migrants from south of the border, the “humanitarian” approach to immigration policy is taking its toll on some. 

“The bodies of an unusually large number of migrants who died in Arizona’s borderlands are being recovered this summer amid record temperatures in the sun-scorched desert and rugged mountains,” Associated Press reported. 

Hennepin County Police Chiefs Alarmed by Increasing Violence

Several Hennepin County police chiefs are speaking out after Minneapolis’ suburbs have seen an unprecedented uptick in violent crime. 

“I’ve never seen the gun violence like it is,” Brooklyn Park Police Chief Craig Enevoldsen told Fox 9. 

Man Charged with Triple Homicide at Georgia Country Club

A man described as a “lone shooter” was arrested in Chamblee Thursday and charged with the murder of a Kennessaw golf pro, along with two others. 

“Bryan Anthony Rhoden of Atlanta was taken into custody in DeKalb County, more than 25 miles from Pinetree Country Club where golf pro Gene Siller, 46, was shot dead Saturday afternoon, according to Cobb officials,” The Atlanta Journal-Constitution said. “Rhoden is charged with three counts of murder, three counts of aggravated assault and two counts of kidnapping, Cobb police Chief Tim Cox said during a hastily arranged news conference Thursday evening.”

Possible Conflict of Interest Takes Center Stage Before Gubernatorial Debate

As Virginia’s gubernatorial candidates approach their first possible debate, questions of a possible conflict of interest are muddying the waters. 

The Virginia Bar Association (VBA) has invited both former Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe, the Democrat candidate for his old job, and Glenn Youngkin, the Republican candidate for governor, to debate. The VBA customarily hosts a debate between the state’s gubernatorial candidates. 

Uncle of Girl Who Filmed Viral George Floyd Video Killed in Minneapolis Police Squad Car Crash

The uncle of Darnella Frazier, the Minneapolis teenager who was recently awarded an honorary Pulitzer for filming the viral video of the arrest of George Floyd, which led to his death at the hands of ex-Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin, has died after a collision with police. 

While officers from the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) were pursuing a suspect in an armed robbery Tuesday morning, one officer’s squad car struck an unrelated vehicle. 

Cleveland Plain Dealer Editorial Board Endorses Nina Turner

The Cleveland Plain Dealer released its endorsement in the Democrat Party primary in Ohio’s 3rd District, slated for August 3. 

The paper chose the former co-chair to Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) 2020 presidential campaign and former Cleveland City Council member Nina Turner.

Michigan Follows Ohio, Implements Vaccine Lottery Program

Michigan has become the latest state to implement a plan to bribe its residents into receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. 

Following Ohio, which, led by Republican Gov. Mike DeWine encouraged people to get the vaccine and enter into vaccine lottery, Michigan’s Democrat Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has done the same. 

Southwest Virginia’s Police Officers Quitting at Alarming Rate

In rural southwest Virginia, the number of police officers quitting their jobs is turning heads.

“In total, Roanoke County saw 28 of its police officers leave during 2020, about one-fifth of its department,” The Roanoke Times reported. “That is both abnormal and normal all at once — abnormal because it’s twice as high as the turnover the agency would expect in a typical year. Normal because it tracks with a surge in police departures unfolding nationwide.”

Ohio Law Codifies Doctors’ Rights to Refuse Service

A provision Ohio’s latest budget bill, which was recently passed, gives doctors the right to refuse service to potential patients on religious and moral grounds.

“This simply puts in statute what the practice has been anyways,” Gov. Mike DeWine (R) reportedly said. “Let’s say the doctor is against abortion, the doctor is not doing abortion. If there’s other things that maybe a doctor has a conscience problem with, it gets worked out, somebody else does those things.”

Supreme Court Decision Claims Minnesota County Officials Bullied Amish Over Religious Beliefs

The Supreme Court recently decided in favor of a Fillmore County Amish community after the county attempted to force the Amish to violate their religious beliefs by installing a septic system, after a lower court had previously ruled in favor of the county and Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. 

According to the Court’s decision, written by Justice Neil Gorsuch, the county engaged in bullying tactics in an attempt to get the Swartzentruber Amish community to agree to its terms. Those tactics included “threats of reprisals and inspections of their homes and farms” and attacks on “the sincerity of the Amish’s faith.”

Virginians No Longer Required to Disclose HIV+ Status to Sexual Partners

It is no longer a crime for Virginians to fail to disclose their HIV+ status before engaging in sexual activities with an unknowing partner, after legislation from the General Assembly’s spring session took effect Thursday. 

The new law says that it is not a crime to unknowingly transmit the virus, for which there is no cure, unless the person transmitting intended to do so. Under the new law, an accuser must also prove that they contracted the virus. 

Tennessee’s Weekly Unemployment Claims Jump, but Continuing Claims Decline

Tennessee’s weekly jobs report shows that while continuing unemployment claims dropped for the third week in a row, new unemployment claims jumped slightly. 

According to the Department of Labor & Workforce Development, during the week of June 26 there were 4,970 unemployment claims, a spike of 254 claims statewide from the previous week. But overall, unemployment claims dropped from 50,671 to 49,909, a drop of 762. 

Loudoun County Teacher Takes Gender Pronoun Fight to Virginia Supreme Court

After an elementary school teacher in Loudoun County was suspended for voicing his opposition to using students’ preferred gender pronouns at a school board meeting, his case might be headed to the Virginia Supreme Court. 

Tyson Langhofer, an attorney for Byron Tanner Cross who is an elementary physical education teacher in the district, has filed a brief with the state’s highest Court asking it not to hear Loudoun County’s appeal on the issue. 

Republican Students Petition Against Vaccine Mandate at Virginia Tech

Right-leaning students at a Virginia institute of higher learning are petitioning the school against its policy of mandatory vaccinations. 

“Virginia Tech students delivered a petition with about 500 signatures that urges Virginia Tech to end a policy requiring students to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to take classes in the fall,” according to The Center Square. 

National Democratic Leader Endorses Turner’s Ohio Congressional Primary Opponent

Defining a clear line between the progressive and moderate wings of the Democrat Party, the third-highest ranking member of the U.S. House endorsed a primary opponent of frontrunner Nina Turner in Ohio’s 11th District special election. 

“What I try to do is demonstrate by precept and example how we are to proceed as a party,” Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC-06) said after his endorsement of Shontel Brown. “When I spoke out against sloganeering, like ‘Burn, baby, burn’ in the 1960s and ‘defund the police,’ which I think is cutting the throats of the party, I know exactly where my constituents are. They are against that, and I’m against that.”

Manhunt on for Teens Who Escaped Somerville Detention Facility

A manhunt is on for two teens who remain at large, after three detainees from the Wilder Youth Development Center outside of Memphis escaped last Wednesday.

“The Fayette County Sheriff’s Office was notified this morning June 23, 2021 at approximately 6:45 am of (3) youth detainees that had escaped from the Wilder Youth Development Center in Somerville between 12:45 am and 1:00 am overnight,” the Fayette County Sheriff’s office said in a press release. “They left in an unknown direction of travel and by unknown means of travel after escape from the facility. Two of the escapees are from Memphis, TN and one is from Chattanooga, TN. One of the escapees has previously escaped from the facility in one of the earlier incidents.”

Virginia College Will Segregate Students with Vaccination Badges

Citing a tip from a student, Young America’s Foundation Monday morning reported that Emory & Henry College in Virginia will require students to wear special lanyards designating their COVID-19 vaccination status. 

“After listening to voices desiring a safe return to a more normal campus environment and using the date available to us regarding COVID-19 vaccination rates, the campus has decided that having a visible showing those who are vaccinated is the best route for our campus,” Dean of Students Tracey Wright said in an email to students. “Therefore, we are providing all who are fully vaccinated with a special lanyard that must be worn on campus.”