Eagle Forum Agenda | June - July 2003

Contents:

Kudos! State Legislature Rejects Expanded Gambling and Tax Hikes

I N S I D E R E P O R T

Child Tax Credit: Truth in Labeling

Senate Liberals Set to Begin 3rd Filibuster

Pro-life Victory

Death Tax Lives on in Washington State

Mothers Do Not Belong in War Zones by Phyllis Schlafly

How to Win the Next Election by Alta Bode


Kudos to State Legislature for Rejecting Expanded Gambling

After months of intense lobbying by Washington Eagle Forum and a handful of other organizations concerned about the explosion of gambling in Washington State, the state legislature has wisely rejected the pie-in-the-sky promises of easy money from expanded Vegas-style gambling. This decision is a momentous win for the children, families and communities of our state.

A mountain of documentation from other states shows that more gambling brings more problems and our research propelled Eagle Forum to step forward with the goal of educating legislators about the destructive impact of gambling. We focused on the following key areas:

  • Gambling promises wealth and riches but delivers poverty and feeds on those who can least afford it.
  • Expanded gambling will erode Washington's quality of life. Crime, corruption, addiction, divorce, suicide and homelessness always follows Las Vegas-style gambling.
  • Gambling money is not a reliable source of revenue. It may provide a temporary infusion of cash but states cannot gamble themselves rich.

Faced with a serious budget shortfall it seemed all but certain that the state legislature would risk gambling away the future of our state by allowing 19,000 video slot machines. To put this in perspective, this would have doubled the current amount of slot machines in our state making us second only to Nevada in the number of available slot machines. Private business were clamoring for the opportunity to compete with Tribal casinos and the gambling lobby, with its seductive promises, was pouring thousands of dollars into our state.

Against these overwhelming odds we made the case that it is not morally or ethically responsible for government to profit on the demise of its citizens and that gambling will not be the economic salvation for businesses. Perhaps, in the end, it was the opinion polls that persuaded legislators that expanded gambling would not be a safe bet for our state. Polls continue to show that a majority want less gambling in our state, not more.

While the newly passed budget is not perfect in every way we applaud the state legislature for facing this budget crisis with discipline and maturity. Under the strong leadership of Senator Dino Rossi (R-Sammamish) they managed to balance the budget without raising taxes and rejected the wrong-headed notion that we can gamble our way out of debt.



Return to Contents


I N S I D E R E P O R T
News You're Not Likely to Hear Anywhere Else

Child Tax Credit: Truth in Labeling
The current debate in the Senate over extending the credit requires a little truth in labeling. The bill President Bush signed into law last week increased the per-child tax credit to $1,000. The bill did not, however, extend the child tax credit to low-income families that pay no taxes. Some senators are outraged and have proceeded to make the credit refundable to these non-taxpayers, but it's impossible to cut taxes below zero. Such refunds would amount to new welfare spending. Only in Washington could increased welfare spending be called a "tax cut." This is hardly sound policy, but if we're going to have the debate, it should at least be described truthfully. Altogether the bill exempted another 3 million low-income Americans from any income tax liability. Today, 30 percent of all tax filers pay no income taxes. Everyone who pays taxes received a tax cut. Since 40 million tax filers pay no taxes, they were not eligible for the child tax credit. That's the truth. Family Research Council

 

Return to Contents

Senate Liberals Set to Begin 3rd Filibuster
The nomination of Judge Carolyn Kuhl to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals may soon be up for a vote on the Senate floor. This is the infamous court that decided reciting the Pledge of Allegiance in public schools is unconstitutional because of the words "Under God." The Constitution demands an up or down vote on the President's nominees. She has wide bipartisan support. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals is in dire need of Judge Kuhl's commonsense. The discriminatory filibusters against a highly successful Hispanic judicial nominee, Miguel Estrada, and against Justice Priscilla Owen are continuing. President Bush nominated both of these outstanding nominees more than 2 years ago. Please call both your Senators and urge them to vote to confirm Judge Carolyn Kuhl to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and to end the filibusters against Miguel Estrada and Justice Owen. The Senate switchboard's phone number is 202-224-3121.
Christian Coalition, Weekly Review

 

Return to Contents

Pro-life Victory
Last week the House of Representatives voted to ban partial-birth abortion by an overwhelming margin of 282-to-139. After an eight-year struggle, a federal ban on partial-birth abortion is now in sight! But the battle won't end there. Predictably, a number of pro-abortion groups are already planning lawsuits. This very real life and death issue will likely be decided by the Supreme Court and who knows what the Court will do. The last time the justices took up this particular issue, the Court overturned a number of state bans by a 5-to-4 vote.
Once again, we are reminded of the fact that virtually every moral issue we care deeply about ends up being decided by the Supreme Court. That's why it is so important that the President makes the right decision in choosing his nominee for the next high court vacancy, which could come at any time.
As expected, both of our pro-abortion Senators voted to continue this horrific abortion procedure.
Gary Bauer memo, 6-5-03

 

Return to Contents


Death Tax Lives on in Washington State

The federal estate tax is scheduled to be phased out by 2010 but because a few liberal Senators insisted on a sunset clause, the tax will come roaring back in full in 2011. Because the death tax in most states is directly linked to the federal tax, the state death tax is being phased out as well.

However, Washington State won't let the death tax die. Rather than allow this tax a natural death, our state has "decoupled" the estate tax from federal law so that even when the federal tax is phased out grieving heirs will still be subject to this confiscation after their loved ones have died.

"It is wrong to steal a family's legacy. The Federal Government of the United States should not be the world's largest and most aggressive grave robber. It is time to end this practice." Dick Armey on the death tax.

Washington, are you listening?

 

Return to Contents


Mothers Do Not Belong in War Zones
By Phyllis Schlafly

The face of war is never pretty, but this time war showed us images we have never seen before. We saw pictures of mothers being sent to Iraq to fight one of the cruelest regimes in the world.
What is the matter with the men of this country - our political and military leaders - that they acquiesce in the policy of sending mothers of infants out to fight Saddam Hussein? Are they the kind of men who, on hearing a noise at 2 a.m. would send his wife or daughter downstairs to confront an intruder?
Three young women were part of a maintenance crew that took a wrong turn and was ambushed by the Iraqis.
Jessica Lynch was rescued by U.S. troops thanks to an Iraqi who was disgusted by the way his fellow Iraqis were slapping her around as a wounded prisoner. Even that Iraqi understood that a female POW is different from a male POW.
Lori Piestewa of Arizona didn't make it back alive. Her body was discovered by our troops in a shallow grave.
Lori was the single mother of a 4-year-old son and a 3-year-old daughter. Did the Iraqi threat to U.S. national security really require those two children to sacrifice their only parent?
The reason these sorry things have happened is that the men in our government and in our military lack the courage to stand down the feminists and repudiate their assault on family and motherhood.
The whole idea of men sending women, including mothers, out to fight the enemy is contrary to our belief in the importance of the family and motherhood and, furthermore, no one respects a man who would let a woman do his fighting for him.
Women serve our country admirably, both on the home front and in many positions in the U.S. Armed Forces. But there is no evidence in history for the proposition that the assignment of women to military combat is the way to advance women's rights, promote national security, or win wars.
America is alone in this extraordinary social experiment to send mothers to war. We hope, now that this war is over, that the President and the military will change these shameful feminist policies.
Conservatives have redoubled their efforts to convince President Bush to reverse the Clinton-era changes which now permit women on the front lines. However, on May 8 Bush told the Washington Times that he would defer to the Pentagon on the question of women in combat. "I will take guidance from the United States military. Our commanders will make those decisions."

 

 

Return to Contents


Washington Eagle Forum would be pleased to come to your community and present a briefing on issues that you care about.
If you are interested in hosting an EF Briefing in your town call us and we'll take care of the details.
360/354-8505


How to Win the Next Election
By Alta Bode

After Election 2000 no one should ever again say their vote doesn't count! Conservatives are infamous for ignoring the privilege of voting. Many feel politics is dirty, others think their vote doesn't count anyway, and others are convinced all elections are rigged since dead and non-existent voters sway the results. Add these reasons to general apathy and elections are easily lost.

A telling statistic of the 2000 election shows that in Oregon Al Gore won by a mere 6,765 votes while 100,672 registered Republicans never even voted.1 If only 7,000 of those Republicans had cast their vote the country would have been spared the Florida debacle and the lingering anger and vindictive vitriol of the Democrats.

Recent demographic polls show increasingly conservative attitudes on issues that traditional God-fearing people care most about.

Statistics today show there is a swelling repugnance of abortion, homosexual marriage and euthanasia but there is a problem with the vocal and well funded minority who have succeeded in stealing the debate and making us believe they hold a majority viewpoint. We need to be an active participant in the arena of ideas, raising our voices and right-minded opinions at every appropriate opportunity. This is what gives hope, courage and optimism to those who believe as we do.

Now is the time for the conservative grassroots to get ready for the next election! Be the active citizen who registers voters in your church and neighborhood. Each of us who believe this land exists under God should begin to proclaim the importance of our vote for traditional values. Those who wish to preserve the vision of the founding fathers must back their beliefs and hopes now by spreading the word to friends neighbors and relatives.
1. information provided by the Oregon Elections Dept.

Return to Contents