Podcast: If Paul Ryan Does Step Down, What’s Next?

Is House Speaker Paul Ryan soon to retire? One report says so. We discuss who could be next in line, and what that could mean for conservative priorities in Congress. Plus: why the left is being ridiculous about the repeal of net neutrality today, and what a new poll shows about whether Americans think of Christmas as a religious or cultural holiday.

The post Podcast: If Paul Ryan Does Step Down, What’s Next? appeared first on The Daily Signal.

The Numbers That Prove How Much the Mainstream Media Hate Trump

There may be fake news, but there’s no making up the media’s loathing of President Donald Trump.

The press has been unrelenting toward this president since Day One—and the Media Research Center’s data proves it. Even the 89 percent negativity from his early months almost seem benevolent now, with numbers in the 91-93 percent range (the latter according to Harvard).

“Our latest numbers show that coverage of Trump on the ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts in September, October and November was more than 90 percent negative (our methodology counts only explicitly evaluative statements from reporters or non-partisan sources),” the Media Research Center explains. “In September, there were just 31 pro-Trump statements on the Big Three vs. 359 negative. In October, the number of positive statements grew to 41, while the negative statements swelled to 435.”

The hostility is tough to ignore, spilling over into fiery White House press briefings and a line of questioning more combative than most Hill hearings. “Add it all up,” the Media Research Center reports, “and coverage of Trump has been 91 percent negative during the past three months. Our study of news in June, July and August found an identical rate of 91 percent negative, which means TV news is unchanged in its hostility toward the president.”

And the bias isn’t just in conservatives’ heads. Former President (and Democrat) Jimmy Carter knows a little something about dealing with the press as the leader of the free world. Even he agrees: “I think the media have been harder on Trump than any other president certainly that I’ve known about,” he told The New York Times. “I think they feel free to claim that Trump is mentally deranged and everything else without hesitation.”

The reality is that to date the president has systematically gone about fulfilling his campaign promises—and that’s what’s driving people opposed to a conservative, pro-American agenda crazy.

This was originally published in Tony Perkins’ Washington Update, which is written with the aid of Family Research Council senior writers.

The post The Numbers That Prove How Much the Mainstream Media Hate Trump appeared first on The Daily Signal.

Podcast: The Effects of Roy Moore’s Loss

What does losing a Republican in the Senate mean? How liberal is Doug Jones, the Democrat who did win in Alabama last night? What about the long-term implications for the GOP, given the sexual misconduct allegations Roy Moore faced? We discuss. Plus: the House and Senate have agreed to a tax deal (and you might see the effects in February), and the outrageously biased texts of an FBI agent formerly involved in the Russia-Trump investigation.

The post Podcast: The Effects of Roy Moore’s Loss appeared first on The Daily Signal.

In Upset, Doug Jones Defeats Roy Moore in Alabama

Democrat Democrat Doug Jones beat Republican Roy Moore in Tuesday’s special election in Alabama’s U.S. Senate race.  

Prior to the allegations of sexual misconduct Moore faced, the state was seen as an almost sure win for a Republican candidate. President Donald Trump won Alabama by almost 28 percentage points in 2016 and there has not been a Democrat senator in 25 years representing the solidly red state.

With 93 percent of the precincts reporting, Jones had 49.6 percent of the vote or 602,515 votes, while Moore had 48.8 percent or 592,729 votes, according to the New York Times.

A Jones win will hurt the conservative agenda, Brian Darling, a former staffer for Sen. Rand Paul, said in an email to The Daily Signal.

“This development empowers the moderates in the Senate in a way that will halt progress on a free market conservative agenda,” Darling, president of Liberty Government Affairs, said. “It is sad that the Republican leadership has proven so incompetent in implementing an agenda promoting free markets, lower taxes and a limited government [and] that has now become even harder to pass.”

After Jones is sworn in, there will be 49 Democrat senators and 51 Republican senators.

Moore, 70, who ran on a conservative platform which included support for a border wall and repealing Obamacare, faced sexual misconduct allegations from at least nine women, “including claims he tried dating them when they were teenagers and he was in his 30s,” according to CBS News.  

One woman, Leigh Corfman, accused Moore of inappropriately touching her when she was 14 years old and another, Beverly Young Nelson, alleged that Moore sexually assaulted her.

Moore denied the allegations.

“I did not know them,” Moore said in an interview Sunday with “The Voice of Alabama Politics.” “I had no encounter with them. I never molested anyone, and for them to say that, I don’t know why they’re saying it, but it’s not true.”

Jones, 63, is a lawyer and former U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Alabama appointed by President Bill Clinton. His campaign platform included support for Obamacare, while acknowledging that it “needs improvement,” and he supports abortion and LGBT rights.

He has also been critical of the Senate’s tax reform plan.

“I am troubled by tax breaks for the wealthy, which seem to be in this bill overloaded,” Jones said. “I’m troubled by what appears to be ultimately tax increases or no tax cuts to the middle class. I generally try to support cutting corporate taxes to try to get reinvestment back into this country.”

President Donald Trump, who had supported Sen. Luther Strange in the primary, backed Moore in the general election and recorded a robo call for his campaign.

“Democrat Jones is soft on crime, weak on immigration, supports abortion, he’s bad for our military and bad for our vets,” Trump said during the call. “We don’t want him, and he also, by the way, wants higher taxes. Roy Moore is the guy we need to pass our ‘Make America Great Again’ agenda. Roy is a conservative who’ll help me steer this country back on track after eight years of the Obama disaster.”

Trump tweeted about the results Tuesday night:

After the allegations against Moore surfaced, some Republicans in Congress, including Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., and Sen Ben Sasse, R-Neb. withdrew support for Moore.

Sens. Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Ted Cruz, R-Texas, also withdrew support.

Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Moore would face an ethics investigation if elected.

“I had hoped earlier that he would withdraw as a candidate, and obviously it’s not going to happen,” McConnell said Dec. 5 of Moore. “if he were to be elected, he would immediately have an ethics committee case, and the committee would take a look at the situation and give us advice.”

Some Republicans, like Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., said the Senate should expel Moore should he take office.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey, a Republican, said Nov. 17 she would vote for Moore, while Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama, also Republican, announced this month he would not back Moore.

“We need to have a Republican in the United States Senate to vote on things like the Supreme Court justices, other appointments the Senate has to confirm and make major decisions,” Ivey said. “So that’s what I plan to do, vote for Republican nominee Roy Moore.”

“I’d rather see the Republican win, but I’d rather see a Republican write-in. I couldn’t vote for Roy Moore,” Shelby told CNN in an interview Sunday.

“I think, so many accusations, so many cuts, so many drip, drip, drip — when it got to the 14-year-old’s story, that was enough for me. I said I can’t vote for Roy Moore,” Shelby added.

The special election was held for the Senate seat vacated by Republican Jeff Sessions when he became attorney general in the Trump administration.

The post In Upset, Doug Jones Defeats Roy Moore in Alabama appeared first on The Daily Signal.

GOP Congressman to Resign for Having ‘Discussion of Surrogacy’ With Female Staffers

Rep. Trent Franks announced that he will resign from his seat after reportedly asking two of his female staffers to be surrogates.

“I have recently learned that the Ethics Committee is reviewing an inquiry regarding my discussion of surrogacy with two previous female subordinates, making each feel uncomfortable,” Franks, R-Ariz., said in a statement Thursday. “I deeply regret that my discussion of this option and process in the workplace caused distress.”

dcnf-logo

Franks says he and his wife have “struggled with infertility,” and the couple has “experienced miscarriages.”

“I have always tried to create a very warm and supportive atmosphere for every last person who has ever worked in my congressional office,” Franks said. “It is my deepest conviction that there are many staffers, former and present, who readily volunteer to substantiate this fact.”

The House Ethics Committee will have to rule on whether or not Franks’ advancements toward female staffers constitute sexual harassment.

“But in the midst of this current cultural and media climate, I am deeply convinced I would be unable to complete a fair House Ethics investigation before distorted and sensationalized versions of this story would put me, my family, my staff, and my noble colleagues in the House of Representatives through hyperbolized public excoriation,” Franks said. “Rather than allow a sensationalized trial by media damage those things I love most, this morning I notified House leadership that I will be leaving Congress as of Jan. 31, 2018.”

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., released a statement providing additional background:

Last Wednesday, the speaker was briefed on credible claims of misconduct by Rep. Trent Franks. He found the allegations to be serious and requiring action. The next day, the speaker presented Rep. Franks with the allegations, which he did not deny.

The speaker told Rep. Franks that he intended to refer the allegations directly to the House Ethics Committee and told him that he should resign from Congress. The allegations were filed with the Ethics Committee last Friday. And today, the speaker accepted a letter of resignation.

The speaker takes seriously his obligation to ensure a safe workplace in the House.

The Arizona congressman was elected in 2002 and previously served in the Arizona House of Representatives.

Franks’ full statement is below:

I have always tried to create a very warm and supportive atmosphere for every last person who has ever worked in my congressional office. It is my deepest conviction that there are many staffers, former and present, who would readily volunteer to substantiate this fact.

Given the nature of numerous allegations and reports across America in recent weeks, I want to first make one thing completely clear. I have absolutely never physically intimidated, coerced, or had, or attempted to have, any sexual contact with any member of my congressional staff.

However, I do want to take full and personal responsibility for the ways I have broached a topic that, unbeknownst to me until very recently, made certain individuals uncomfortable. And so, I want to shed light on how those conversations came about.

My wife and I have long struggled with infertility. We experienced three miscarriages.

We pursued adoption on more than one occasion only to have the adoptive mothers in each case change their mind prior to giving birth.

A wonderful and loving lady, to whom we will be forever grateful, acted as a gestational surrogate for our twins and was able to carry them successfully to live birth. The process by which they were conceived was a pro-life approach that did not discard or throw away any embryos.

My son and daughter are unspeakable gifts of God that have brought us our greatest earthly happiness in the 37 years we have been married.

When our twins were approximately 3 years old, we made a second attempt with a second surrogate who was also not genetically related to the child. Sadly, that pregnancy also resulted in miscarriage.

We continued to have a desire to have at least one additional sibling, for which our children had made repeated requests.

Due to my familiarity and experience with the process of surrogacy, I clearly became insensitive as to how the discussion of such an intensely personal topic might affect others.

I have recently learned that the Ethics Committee is reviewing an inquiry regarding my discussion of surrogacy with two previous female subordinates, making each feel uncomfortable. I deeply regret that my discussion of this option and process in the workplace caused distress.

We are in an unusual moment in history—there is collective focus on a very important problem of justice and sexual impropriety. It is so important that we get this right for everyone, especially for victims.

But in the midst of this current cultural and media climate, I am deeply convinced I would be unable to complete a fair House Ethics investigation before distorted and sensationalized versions of this story would put me, my family, my staff, and my noble colleagues in the House of Representatives through hyperbolized public excoriation. Rather than allow a sensationalized trial by media damage those things I love most, this morning I notified House leadership that I will be leaving Congress as of January 31st, 2018. It is with the greatest sadness, that for the sake of the causes I deeply love, I must now step back from the battle I have spent over three decades fighting. I hope my resignation will remain distinct from the great gains we have made. My time in Congress serving my constituents, America and the Constitution is and will remain one of God’s greatest gift to me in life.

This story was updated to include statements from Franks and Ryan.

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities for this original content, email licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

The post GOP Congressman to Resign for Having ‘Discussion of Surrogacy’ With Female Staffers appeared first on The Daily Signal.