Beyond Our Border

FLORIDA

If ‘ya can’t beat ‘em, assassinate ‘em! So it appears to one GOP congressional candidate in Florida. Heated political contests are common in these wonderful United States, and no more so than in the Sunshine State.

However, unlike the group of six Democratic House members self-described as “The Squad,” the chosen method for eliminating Republican opposition in a Tampa Bay-area district involved a “Russian-Ukrainian hit squad.”

In a recorded phone conversation, the candidate warned the listener to avoid supporting his primary opponent because he had plans to remove her from the ballot and make her “disappear.” 

Lest any think this political aspiration without socially redeeming value, another remark restores confidence in the purpose and merit of right-wing political ideology. The candidate described the necessity of his proposal:

“I really don’t want to have to end anybody’s life for the good of the people of the United States of America. That will break my heart…. But if it needs to be done, it needs to be done.”

What’s one or two or more fewer Florida voters?

MISSOURI

The Show Me State showed the world that it remains stubbornly unique and determined to chart its own course in its affairs. In fact, Missouri recently displayed its character in a triple header of Ripley Believe It or Not items.

First, the Republican-dominated legislature announced it would not fund Medicaid. In a statement, one of its leaders said, “Medicaid expansion is wrong for Missouri. I think it’s wrong for the state budget.” A colleague chimed in, “Even though my constituents voted for this lie, I am going to protect them from this lie.”

The expansion had been approved by 53% in a ballot referendum amending the state constitution, and estimates indicated some 275,000 residents would benefit from the “lie.” 

For one thing, the state legislature, ignoring history and legality, decided that it would nullify federal gun legislation. The law was signed into effect by Republican Gov. Mike Parsons; it barred state and local police from enforcing gun laws and would subject violators to a fine of $50,000 per violation. That provision differentiated Missouri’s ban from those of a dozen other states.

Second, the new measure has incurred a letter from the US DOJ indicating nullification of federal laws is not acceptable. At the same time, the city and county of St. Louis have filed lawsuits to block its implementation.

Third, a 62-year-old life-sentence inmate since age 19 has been proven to be innocent of a 1978 triple murder, a conclusion joined by the state’s prosecutor based upon witness recantation and an examination of the conviction proceeding. Although behind bars for 43 years and in the face of indisputable evidence of innocence, Gov. Parsons announced that the case was not a “priority.”

No funds for Medicaid in light of a budget surplus and additional federal funding. No laws limiting guns. No mercy for innocent inmates. The Show Me State has indeed shown its face to the rest of the world. It might be better named the No Me State.

SOUTH DAKOTA

SD’s nickname is the Mount Rushmore state for obvious reasons. With a population of 897,000, South Dakota has been reliably Republican, electing its two senators and single, at-large representative. The governor is Kristi Noem, also a Republican, deep-red conservative with a penchant for acquiring the limelight.

A recent tiff with the Biden administration concerning fireworks at Mount Rushmore for the July 4th holiday has been front- page news since March. Noem asserts the fireworks ban is politically motivated noting it had previously been authorized by the 45th president and subsequently prohibited by Biden due to the pandemic.

Noem has been rumored to be seeking national office. In June, she announced that a contingent of state National Guard troops would be sent to Texas upon a general request of Texas Governor Abbott. Noem has described the border issues to be a matter of national security. According to a Politico report, the 50-troop contingent is to be funded by a Tennessee billionaire admirer of the South Dakota governor. This plan has raised a number of questions about private financing of government as well as the authority of the governor to deploy troops to other states.

Keep an eye on Ms. Noem.

WASHINGTON

How do elected officials whom we expect to be sensitive to an electorate and a larger
public in their jurisdictions continue to demonstrate insensitivity bordering upon
ignorance?

A Washington state lawmaker apologized recently for wearing a yellow Star of David
— a symbol forced on Jews by the Nazis during the Holocaust — in a speech to
protest restrictions implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Apparently unsatisfied with his initial ignorance, the legislator wrote on Facebook “In
the current context, we’re all Jews,” He further explained the star is an echo from
history and said Danish people wore yellow stars to confuse the Nazis during WW II.

The tale was debunked by Snopes 21 years ago.

Conflating concern about vaccines and “vaccine passports” is simply not related and
certainly not related to the Holocaust. Nonetheless, the yellow stars have appeared in
Minnesota and as decoration for hats in a Tennessee store.

Advertising once challenged us to “wonder where the yellow went.”

 



Categories: Beyond our Borders, elections, gun control, Issues, legislature, politics, RULE OF LAW, State

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