Previous Democratic state representative Gabby Giffords alleged in a federal lawsuit that the National Rifle Association (NRA) broke campaign finance laws by using shell corporations to coordinate advertising with individuals running for federal office. The lawsuit alleged that the NRA illegally gave up to $35 million to the campaigns of at least seven candidates: previous President Donald Trump, who may have received up to $25 million; Republican Senators Josh Hawley (MO), Thom Tillis (NC), Ron Johnson (WI), Tom Cotton (AR); former Republican Senator Cory Gardner (CO); and Representative Matt Rosendale (MT).
These illegal contributions allegedly occurred in the 2014, 2016, and 2018 elections. In that last year, Giffords filed complaints to the Federal Election Commission (FEC) against the NRA’s contributions. After the FEC didn’t act, Giffords sought and received a district court order this September to compel the FEC to act within 30 days. The FEC reportedly failed to act once again, allowing Giffords to sue. Those named in the complaint are the NRA, Rosendale, and Hawley.
Giffords’ counsel asserted that these allegedly illegal funds were the NRA “buying influence over elected officials” as part of a national scheme. Giffords Law Center Senior Staff Attorney David Pucino characterized the NRA and the politicians they backed financially as corrupt.
“The NRA has long acted like it is above the law, and it has done so flagrantly in the last several election cycles. This lawsuit demonstrates that the NRA broke the law by illegally coordinating with federal campaigns and funneling millions of dollars to candidates who supported their extremist, deadly agenda,” said Pucino. “We are suing the NRA to finally hold them accountable for actions that corrupted politicians and undermined our democracy.”
The NRA responded Thursday, asserting their innocence.
“[Just] another premeditated abuse of the public by our adversaries, who will stop at nothing in their pursuit of their anti-freedom agenda. This latest action is as misguided as it is transparent,” asserted the NRA. “Suffice it to say, the NRA has full confidence in its political activities and remains eager to set the record straight.”
Giffords’ lawsuit describes how she co-founded her gun violence nonprofit in 2013 to compete directly with the NRA after surviving a targeted shooting in 2011. The other co-founder was her husband, Democratic Senator Mark Kelly.
As AZ Free News reported in September, Kelly never recused himself from voting on President Joe Biden’s since-retracted nominee for the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), David Chipman, who his nonprofit hired, endorsed, and backed financially.
The lawsuit requests relief in the form of limited funding in future elections and a penalty payment matching their allegedly illegal contributions: up to $35 million.
“I believe in science, Donald Trump doesn’t. It’s that simple, folks,” Joe Biden tweeted during the 2020 election campaign.
Even by Biden standards, that was a deceitful remark. Not only did his opponent spearhead the unexpectedly efficient development of the Covid vaccine, which has been the cornerstone of pandemic suppression ever since, but the Biden administration has already done the most damage of any in memory by politicizing “the Science“, thus weakening its credibility.
Real science isn’t some facts approved by experts but a philosophical framework for acquiring and evaluating knowledge that originated in the Enlightenment. Science emphasizes reason, observation and methodical analysis rather than loyalty to teachings of authorities.
But “the science“ is also an institution, the mainstream scientific establishment. It has value as a keeper of standards and liaison to the masses.
Like all humans, scientists can become absorbed in self-interest and groupthink. Real science has recently been threatened by a return to dogma science, the veneration of experts and the belief that if a consensus of scientists believe something, that makes it true.
Science history shows the tragic consequences when dissent is disallowed. Galileo in the 16th century was censured and tormented for defying the teaching of Ptolemy that the sun was the center of the universe. Millions of humans suffered needlessly for millennia because medical practice was based on the ancient teachings of Galen, while new observations and innovation were prohibited.
In spite of all the technical achievements and enhanced prestige of science, the struggle between open inquiry versus dogma-as-science is still with us. For those with trouble distinguishing the two, here’s a tip. Real science welcomes dissent, considering it essential to the advancement of knowledge. Dogma science resents noncompliance and tries to eliminate it.
Yet scientific conformity, the enemy of progress, is once again achieving widespread approval. We’re told that 97% of all climate scientists believe in global warming, which is code for: human activity is hurtling us toward a climate catastrophe which can only be avoided by radical changes in human behavior and consumption.
Although the scientific community has closed ranks around this view, many points remain debatable. Some unafraid scientists question the reliability of the models and/or the accuracy of underlying data. Others also question the feasibility of decarbonization when the world’s major polluters show zero interest in compliance and citizens’ movements worldwide already resist even modest sacrifices to avoid the threatened calamity.
But the alarmists arguing the necessity of a dystopian world of deprivation and oppression aren’t brooking any second thoughts. Those who have them are branded “deniers“, morally equivalent to Holocaust deniers. They are silenced and fired and scorned.
Non-standard opinions are branded as “misinformation“ and banished. When over 95% of federal climate research funding goes to committed climate alarmists, working scientists get the message.
Much of the dysfunction is recent. British science writer Matt Ridley remembers how “20 or 30 years ago, you could study how the ice ages happened and discuss competing theories“ without fear of reprisal. No longer.
The science of coronavirus disease too has become so politically charged that rational discussion is no longer possible. Remember that not long ago, Biden and Harris, our two top “science followers“, vowed to refuse the Covid vaccination if Trump was involved.
Those who disagree with the government/consensus line on early-stage medical management, the value of lockdowns, the necessity of school closures or the need for masks are abruptly canceled. The scientific community was so anxious to make us believe that there was no possibility the virus could have originated in a Chinese lab that the notion was designated as “misinformation” until dogged investigation revealed otherwise. Oops.
Today, social media, in collaboration with the government, perform the work that was once the mission of the Inquisition: identifying heretics and punishing them. The common man is in a quandary. With so many people in white coats lending their credibility to the political domain, how can you know the truth?
There are real world consequences to this intellectual chicanery. The distrust engendered has contributed to public skepticism over needed technologies like genetically modified food, nuclear power and – yes – vaccines.
Galileo could have warned us.
Dr. Thomas Patterson, former Chairman of the Goldwater Institute, is a retired emergency physician. He served as an Arizona State senator for 10 years in the 1990s, and as Majority Leader from 93-96. He is the author of Arizona’s original charter schools bill.
Thousands of people came from across the state to hear from President Donald Trump on Saturday. The former president delivered a fiery speech at the Turning Point Action conference in Phoenix.
During the rally dedicated to election integrity, Trump introduced many members of the Arizona State Senate and thanked them for agreeing to pursue an audit of the Maricopa County 2020 General Election.
“We will fight for truth, transparency and accountability, and we will not stop until we have restored out American birthright of honest, free and fair elections,” said Trump. “We’re gathered here in Phoenix to show our support for election integrity and for the brave and unyielding conservative warriors in the Arizona state Senate.”
“Why wouldn’t somebody want election integrity? Why wouldn’t they want to know? And I would be very happy – won’t happen – but I would be very happy if they did it and everything was perfect. But you’re not going to find that,” said the former president.
Trump got around to the subject of the Democrats, who he said are moving the country in a socialist direction through their spending, support for Critical Race Theory, and “Marxists” like Black Lives Matter who “are seizing power and destroying everything we hold dear as Americans. It’s happening, and I said it was going to happen.”
“They dismantled the rule of law, censor speech, take over the free press, imprison political opponents,” said Trump pivoting back to the 2020 election. “You see that’s happening all over; look at what I’ve been through for years – and, of course, hold fake phony elections.”