Major networks declined to run an ad on their Sunday morning news shows from a bipartisan group of former senators warning of the seriousness of an Iranian nuclear bomb.
The ad comes from a new group called the American Security Initiative (ASI), which is led by former Sens. Saxby Chambliss (R, Ga.), Evan Bayh (D, Ind.), and Norm Coleman (R., Minn.).
Featured in the ad is a terrorist driving a van containing a nuclear bomb that detonates in the United States. It ends by urging for passage of the Corker-Menendez Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act, which would require any Iranian nuclear deal reached by the administration to be approved by Congress.
The group spent $500,000 to get the ad on the airwaves, specifically targeting markets in Washington, D.C., Lexington, Ky., and Springfield, Ill. The ads in Kentucky and Illinois call out Sens. Rand Paul (R., Ky.) and Dick Durbin (D., Ill.).
Though the ASI ad is on cable in each of the targeted markets, ABC, CBS, and NBC all declined to run the ad during their Sunday morning news programming.
Fox News aired the ad multiple times during Fox News Sunday.
ABC informed ASI that because the “subject matter” of the ad is “currently pervasive” in the news, the ad could not be aired during This Week with George Stephanopoulos.
Susan Sewell, ABC’s vice president of media relations, said that ABC is unable to comment further on the matter due to company policy.
CBS said the ad was declined for Face the Nation on a national level because it “didn’t meet their standards,” but declined to comment further on the situation. Local affiliates of CBS were free to make their own decision on whether or not to air the ad, but none chose to run it.
Attempts to buy ad time during NBC’s Meet the Press were also unsuccessful, though no reason was given for the decision. Multiple requests for comment to NBC have gone unanswered.
The ad has been on the air since last week on multiple cable channels including CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC. Comcast, which owns NBC, is also running the ad in local markets.
Christopher Maloney, a spokesman for ASI, said that the American people should be concerned that the networks refused to run an ad addressing an issue that can “directly impact our national security.”
“Millions of network news viewers across the country are actively seeking information about our government’s ongoing negotiations with Iran,” Maloney said. “I think many Americans, regardless of their political persuasion, would be concerned to learn that ABC, CBS, and NBC decided not to run an ad discussing what can be done to influence the debate surrounding these negotiations, and how they carry the potential to directly impact our national security.”
The group Veterans for a Strong America plans to sue the State Department over a Freedom of Information Action request it filed for Hillary Clinton’s emails and phone logs from the days before and after the attack at Benghazi.
Joel Arends, the group’s chairman and founder, has brought on Mark Zaid, an attorney who specializes in national security and FOIA litigation cases, to handle the lawsuit.
Arends filed a FOIA request in July 2014 for Clinton’s emails and phone logs for around the time of the Sept. 11, 2012, attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi.
“We didn’t embark on a fishing expedition,” Arends told The Daily Caller. “All that we want are the records from the night before and the day after [Benghazi].”
Four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens, were killed during that attack.
Arends said his group filed the FOIA request to obtain information to use in a book “What Difference Does It Make?” The title is borrowed from a question Clinton asked during a January 2013 Senate hearing on Benghazi.
Arends set out to write the book for veterans to find out “what it would mean to them if they knew their government or their chain of command was not going to come to their aid or assistance when there’s resources or assets available, similar to what happened in Benghazi.”
“We want to know who she was talking to, what kind of command and control she had, what kind of situational awareness she had,” Arends told TheDC.
Finding out how Clinton immediately reacted to news of the Benghazi is crucial given Clinton’s likely presidential bid, Arends asserted.
“It’s fair game to know what kind of commander-in-chief she’s going to be.”
“Was she talking to President Clinton? Was she talking to a PR crisis team? Because if she making those kind of phone calls it means that that was time wasted or time that she could have been talking to the State Department crisis communications team.”
Clinton turned over 55,000 emails from her personal email account to the State Department in December. Around 300 of those were given to a House committee investigating the Benghazi attack.
That committee, headed by South Carolina Rep. Trey Gowdy, has subpoenaed Clinton’s emails.
Arends said that like everyone at the time, when he filed his FOIA request he had no idea Clinton exclusively sent private emails that were routed through a private server she had set up in her Chappaqua, N.Y. home.
In light of that revelation, “the most prudent thing to do is to seize that server so that we can make sure that we’re getting all of the documents,” Arends said.
Getting control of that server is crucial because the emails Clinton has turned over to State so far were selected by her and her staff.
“It shouldn’t be up to her staff, given the lack of credibility that they have, to determine what gets turned over and what doesn’t,” Arends said.
Zaid, whose most famous case was a successful lawsuit against the Libyan government on behalf of the families killed in the Pan Am 103 flight over Lockerbie, said that the FOIA lawsuit could force a court to confront “grey areas” regarding how federal agencies manage officials’ records.
“The State Department, if they decline to search for telephone records that might reveal what the Secretary did on certain days because she was on her home phone, that explanation may set off a chain reaction elsewhere to Trey Gowdy’s special committee where he subpoenas the phone records,” Zaid told TheDC.
“If we go to court we can certainly dispute what constitutes an agency record,” he added.
With the lawsuit, Veterans for a Strong America joins the government watchdog Judicial Watch and The Associated Press in challenging the State Department over its handling of FOIA request for Clinton documents.
The Wisconsin Senate passed legislation late Wednesday to limit union powers amid a second day of protests as the state capitol again became a battleground over the future of organized labor.
The GOP-controlled Senate passed a “right-to-work” bill with a 17-15 vote that would allow employees in unionized private-sector workplaces to opt out of paying union dues. Republicans also control the state Assembly, making passage likely during the next week, and Gov. Scott Walker – who is considering a run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016 – has said he would sign such a measure into law.
Immediately after passage, the spectator gallery erupted in boos and chants of “shame, shame!” as the Senate ended its day.
Debate on the bill began Wednesday afternoon in the Senate as about 2,000 protesters jostled and chanted on the steps of the capitol and in the rotunda.
The measure comes four years after Mr. Walker pushed through legislation limiting the reach of public-sector unions, drawing tens of thousands to protest in the capitol and launching a contentious recall election, which the governor won.
Minutes after debate began, a spectator in the gallery stood up, and started yelling before being escorted from the chamber by a police officer. “This is an attack on Democracy!” he shouted.
A few minutes later, another audience member did much the same, before the gallery calmed down and debate continued. Spectators interrupted the session regularly, with the Senate president punctuating the outbursts by banging her gavel and summoning police to escort offenders from the chamber.
At the end of the night, her gavel fell apart in her hand mid-bang.
Although no arrests were made in the Senate, officers took four people into custody during protests in the rotunda, according to capitol police.
Sen. Scott Fitzgerald, the majority leader, said the bill would create a more competitive state economy and give workers more individual freedom to choose union membership, adding that the bill doesn’t prohibit collective bargaining between unions and employers.
“This legislation will ensure that Wisconsin’s workers have the sole power to determine whether they wish to belong to or support a labor organization,” he said in a statement following the vote.
“Right-to-work: it does impact the economy, except in the wrong direction,” said Democrat Senator Lena Taylor during the debate. “It will have an impact on so many things we aren’t even aware of because we’re rushing it through.”
Since his re-election last year, Mr. Walker has shown little interest in expanding union curbs to the private sector, but in recent days he reiterated his support of a right-to-work bill after state lawmakers took the lead.
The legislation still faces opposition from unions and Democratic lawmakers, who argue it is meant to undermine organized labor and won’t deliver the economic benefits backers promise. They also have accused Republican leaders of fast-tracking the legislation to stifle debate.
“It’s bad for the working men and women of this state, both union and nonunion,” said Sen. Dave Hansen, a Democrat, after the vote. “It’s ridiculous.”
But Myranda Tanck, spokeswoman for Mr. Fitzgerald, dismissed the argument, saying the idea isn’t new and possible legislation has been discussed in the state since the 1990s.
Still, the timing appears to have caught some opponents off guard, with labor leaders so far unable to muster the large crowds seen in 2011.
Senate Democrats presented more than a half-dozen amendments which were all defeated before the final vote Wednesday night. Assembly leaders have said they would take up the legislation next week following Senate action.
Twenty-four states have “right-to-work” laws, yet only three have passed such legislation in the past decade: Oklahoma, Michigan and Indiana. That could change in the coming months as several other states debate such bills.
A Lieutenant Colonel was escorting his daughter to Rochester Adams high school in Michigan, when the man in uniform was rudely informed that he would not be permitted to enter the premises.
The reason that the military officer was given? His uniform ‘might offend people.’
The security personnel hired by the school told the 24-year veteran Lt. Col. Sherwood Baker that if he wanted to take his daughter inside the building, he would have to go home and change clothes.
Lt. Col. Baker’s wife Rachel Ferhadson told WJBK, “before he was allowed in, the security guard stopped him and said sorry you’re not allowed in the school. Security told him men and women in uniform weren’t allowed because it may offend another student.”
The school superintendent Robert Shaner, who is a military veteran himself, went out of his way to apologize to the family for the misconduct of the security personnel.
But the question that should come to mind about protecting students from ‘taking offense’ at a soldier in uniform: what about offending a military officer in the U.S. Army with a long career of service defending Americans from enemies of the country, while putting his life on the line to do it?
One day this wannbe tough guy will mouth off to the wrong person
Video surfaced on Thursday showing Michael Mulgrew, president of New York’s United Federation of Teachers, as he unloaded a hateful rant against critics of the Common Core Standards Initiative.
“If someone takes something from me, I’m going to grab it right back out of their cold, twisted, sick hands and say it is mine!” Mulgrew bellowed clownishly. “You do not take what is mine!”
The union boss also challenged opponents of Common Core and union control over education to a fist fight.
“I’m going to punch you in the face and push you in the dirt because this is the teachers’!” Mulgrew threatened.
The teachers union bigwig made the speech at a convention in Los Angeles last month, according to the New York Daily News.
Common Core is a Socialist dream, a one-size-fits-all top down approach that is a massive failure waiting to happen