In this era of increased harassment and persecution of people on the basis of political viewpoints and…
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First Amendment Rights: Good News from the IRS on Donor Privacy

In this era of increased harassment and persecution of people on the basis of political viewpoints and First Amendment expression, there’s actually good news to report.

In fact, that positive development comes from none other than the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which few people typically consider a font of good news.

Specifically, the IRS just announced a proposed rule to stop requiring nonprofit organizations to file what’s known as a Form 990 Schedule B, which exposes sensitive donor information not only to the federal government and potential rogues like former IRS official Lois Lerner, but also people who seek to access and use that information to target people on the basis of political belief.

As we at CFIF have long asserted, this welcome move will help protect the…[more]

September 12, 2019 • 11:07 am

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Is Jon Huntsman the Next John McCain? Print
By Ashton Ellis
Wednesday, June 01 2011
Stylistically, Huntsman is a smoother speaker and has a much more likeable personality than John McCain. On substance, however, Huntsman is little more than a better looking, more articulate version of Arizona’s senior senator.

In the race to see who will challenge President Barack Obama next year, Republican primary voters are being told by the mainstream media to consider former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman.  He’s good looking, mild mannered and a well accomplished businessman and politician.  But before conservatives get lost in the media’s swoon for another political maverick, a closer look at his record reveals a candidate who will be unreliable if elected.

To the extent Main Street America is familiar with Huntsman, it is likely to be with his abrupt departure as President Barack Obama’s Ambassador to China.  In early January, Huntsman gave an interview to Newsweek, where he all but announced the intention to challenge his boss for the presidency.  By the end of April, Huntsman had resigned his position and assembled a campaign team.  As of last week, he completed a five-day swing through New Hampshire, site of the first presidential primary in 2012. 

Though Huntsman and his surrogates insist he didn’t damage U.S.-Chinese relations with his transparent upstaging, it wouldn’t be the first time Huntsman has upset those closest to him by pursuing his own ambition. 

As governor in 2007, Huntsman unilaterally committed Utah to fighting climate change through a controversial cap-and-trade pact called the Western Region Climate Action Partnership.  It was promoted by Arnold Schwarzenegger, and like almost everything the Governator touched, the partnership failed.  Huntsman has since backed away from the initiative saying it was a good idea at the time, but now costs too much.

But taxing Americans’ standard of living wasn’t the only Huntsman policy that took the shine off his reputation as a conservative who cut taxes and tightened restrictions on abortion.  In a move that immensely angered Utah state lawmakers, Huntsman announced his support for civil unions and in-state tuition for illegal immigrants within months of winning a second term as governor.  He followed that up by saying, if anything, Obama’s trillion dollar stimulus wasn’t large enough to get the country out of the Great Recession. 

Even Huntsman’s touting of a report by the Pew Center citing Utah as the best managed state in America came with a price: huge increases in the size of state government.  Noting the flurry of pivots away from the conservative base, one Utah lawmaker said in February 2009 that “It’s clear that he is not running again in Utah.  He’s moving to a national agenda.” 

It was this weakening of his conservative brand that made Huntsman an attractive landing pad for ex-McCain staffers looking for a new progressive Republican.  Indeed, in March 2009, Senator John McCain (R-AZ) said that then-Governor Huntsman would be a strong candidate in 2012.  By August of 2010, former McCain campaign manager John Weaver was launching Horizon PAC as a vehicle to “draft” Huntsman into running for president. 

Remember John Weaver?  He’s the campaign guru who stoked McCain’s delusions about being this era’s Teddy Roosevelt, a previous progressive Republican.  Weaver was one of McCain’s cheerleaders in concocting the kinds of policies conservatives hate and liberals love: amnesty for illegal immigrants, limitations on political speech during campaigns, and yes, cap-and-trade. 

Stylistically, Huntsman is a smoother speaker and has a much more likeable personality than John McCain.  On substance, however, Huntsman is little more than a better looking, more articulate version of Arizona’s senior senator.   

If Jon Huntsman manages to get the 2012 GOP nomination, it is certain that the media’s current adulation of him will be redirected toward Barack Obama, the unabashed liberal in the race.  And just like McCain’s base-less campaign, conservatives would be left with a choice between a man they can’t stand and one they can’t trust. 

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On September 17 of which one of the following years was the U.S. Constitution sent to Congress for ratification by the states?
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