The state of our unions, the death of a young woman, and more from Fox News Opinion

LAURA INGRAHAM – Fox News host says President Biden’s ‘very bad’ poll numbers are the only reason he went to the southern border. Continue reading…

HUGH HEWITT – Trump’s list of proposed key appointees he should issue soon. Continue reading…

CALIFORNIA DREAMIN’ – Newsom’s California is a mess of crime and a huge warning to the nation. Continue reading…

GUTFELD – It took the death of a young woman before Biden was ‘forced’ to visit the border. Continue reading…

$100,000 – Would you agree to skip college? Continue reading…

THE NATURE BOY – Ignore the haters. Continue watching…

HAPPILY EVER AFTER? – The state of the union isn’t strong because of the state of our unions. Continue reading…

GOOGLE THAT – Google’s Gemini AI has a White people problem. Continue reading…

THEIR LAST WISH – My parents survived the Holocaust. They gave us 5 lessons on living well. Continue reading…

CARTOON OF THE DAY – Check out all of our political cartoons…

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The state of the union isn’t strong because of the state of our unions

Thomas Jefferson, the nation’s third president, is justly famous for underlining the importance of “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” for our new nation in the Declaration of Independence. But as we close in on the forty-sixth president’s 2024 State of the Union address in less than a week, we must face this fact: Jefferson’s vision is in peril.  

President Joe Biden and Congress could take a big step toward realizing “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” for our nation if they recognized this simple truth — nothing matters for the State of Our Union than the state of our unions. 

When it comes to “life,” we’re witnessing tragic increases in what have been called “deaths of despair,” with record numbers of Americans — hundreds of thousands, to be precise — either killing themselves or dying from drug and alcohol overdoses in recent years.  

MOM PRAISES VIRAL PARENTING TACTIC AS SHE ALLOWS HER KIDS TO PLAY BY THEMSELVES: ‘WHOLE NEW WORLD’

When it comes to “liberty,” we see that record share of Americans — 64%, to be precise — now reporting they believe the American Dream is dead. And when it comes to the “pursuit of happiness,” poll after poll is telling us that millions of Americans are failing at this most important Jeffersonian pursuit, with happiness hitting “record lows” in recent years, according to Gallup.  

The State of Our Union is not strong, Mr. President. And the usual suspects that get blamed for all this in our national conversation are not the most important culprits. America’s ills are not primarily about failing schools, economic inequality or race. 

They are fundamentally about the fragile character of American family life — a subject Biden is unlikely to spend much time on during his address, despite its vital importance to the health of our country.  

Too many Americans are living alone or in chaotic homes, in large part because marriage and family life are too fragile in today’s society. The marriage rate has fallen more than 60% since 1970, a record number of adults are unmarried (about half), and almost one-in-two children grow up today outside of an intact, married family. 

The importance of strong and stable families for our country is conveyed in two new studies. In explaining which regions are more vulnerable to deaths of despair, for instance, a new study by Gallup economist Jonathan Rothwell reports that declines in marriage are “more important than the college attainment rate, age composition, or racial composition in predicting deaths of despair.”  

And another recent study by University of Chicago economist Sam Peltzman finds the “recent decline in the married share of adults can explain (statistically) most of the recent decline in overall happiness.”  

In other words, one of the biggest reasons — if not the biggest reason — the State of Our Union is not strong is that too many Americans are failing to get and stay married, and both they and their kids are paying a heavy price. But policymakers — including the president — pay too little attention to marriage, and its importance to the underlying social fabric of our country.

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What, then, could Biden and the Congress do to shore up marriage and family life?  

They could stop penalizing marriage through tax and welfare policies. These policy traps generally hurt working-class families by attaching a financial cost to marriage — which helps explain why a large share of working-class kids are born outside of marriage, which hurts children the most.  

Additionally, the president and Congress could embrace a child tax credit that gives families a 20% bonus for being married. This approach would give parents a financial boost while also incentivizing our most important institution.  

Finally, the U.S. Department of Education should promote the “Success Sequence”—which teaches students that the key to financial success is education, work and marriage — in public school curricula across the country. Work done by my colleagues at the American Enterprise Institute shows that teaching the “Success Sequence” in public schools has the support of large majorities of Americans and American parents.  

Taking these steps would go a long way to fulfilling the vision for America that Jefferson outlined in the Declaration of Independence, a vision that is now imperiled by the fragile character of family life across our nation.  

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Fani Willis and her tainted team should be removed from Trump case in Georgia

Now that the motion to disqualify Fani Willis is in the hands of the judge awaiting his ruling, the Fulton District Attorney’s Office is in a full state of disarray, brought upon it by an arrogant, self-serving, self-righteous and self-dealing “Madame District Attorney,” as she refers to herself.

The various defendants who have filed for the indictment to be dismissed based on a conflict of interest allege two primary grounds. First, that Willis engaged in “Forensic Misconduct,” which means through her countless media appearances and recent church appearances, where she has talked about this specific disqualification effort, she has effectively denied the defendants a fair trial.

On this point, lawyers pointed out that Willis arrogantly marched into a pulpit at a Black church in Atlanta, filled with potential jurors, and said God was on her side, that the lawyers attacking her were racists, and by telling them she had a 95% conviction rate, thus implying that the defendants were most certainly guilty.

She’s not allowed to do that. Under the Georgia Rules of Professional Conduct, she violated one, Rule 3.8, specially aimed at prosecutors:

ONE THING CERTAIN AFTER FANI WILLIS’ BIG EMBARRASSMENT IN THE COURTROOM

“The prosecutor in a criminal case shall… refrain from making extrajudicial comments that have a substantial likelihood of heightening public condemnation of the accused.”

The maximum penalty for violating this rule is disbarment.

Her going into a church packed full of potential jurors and slamming the defendants and their lawyers for calling out her nepotism, her self-dealing, and her apparent dishonesty to the court, while calling them racists , clearly violates Rule 3.8. And if she can get disbarred for it, she should most certainly be removed from the case.

There is a reason for this rule. Prosecutors are supposed to ensure the fairness of the entire process. Fundamental fairness is at the heart of due process, and without due process the system collapses.

The other main ground the defendants rely on to remove Willis are based on an alleged conflict of interest for having a personal financial stake in the existence of and the continuation of the case.

TRUMP CALLS ‘BADLY TAINTED’ FULTON COUNTY CASE ‘A SCAM’ AFTER DA FANI WILLIS’ COURTROOM DRAMA

The evidence presented clearly shows a scheme concocted by Willis whereby she gave a lucrative no-bid contract, paying $250 per hour, to her secret lover, “Special Prosecutor” Nathan Wade, who had never ever in his life prosecuted a felony case and then had those tax dollars come back to her in a form of a kickback whereby Wade would pay the costs of luxury travel on her behalf. 

This text exchange between Michael Roman’s attorney , Ashleigh Merchant, and Wade’s former partner, Terrence Bradley, confirms that Wade is wholly unqualified for his role in this case.

Merchant: “To your knowledge has Nathan ever prosecuted a felony? I can’t find a single one.”

Bradley: “Never in his life has he ever prosecuted a felony.”

Merchant presented documentary evidence showing Wade had romanced Willis by taking her on romantic trips, including Caribbean cruises and Napa Valley, to name just a couple. In all, the evidence Merchant was able to get her hands on totaled about $17,000.

IT’S AN ADULTS-ONLY REALITY TV HIT. JUST CALL IT ‘THE REAL PROSECUTORS OF FULTON COUNTY’

Here is where the disqualification hearing moves into the surreal. First, Willis and Wade both admitted under oath to having the affair, however they claim it did not start until 2022, after his appointment as “special prosecutor.” Then they both testified to this ridiculous scheme whereby she would repay Wade – in untraceable, unverifiable cash – for the costs of her travel. 

Notwithstanding that this claim defies credulity, the judge should give this testimony no weight or credibility because, in my opinion Willis and Wade lied to the court and perpetrated a fraud upon the court concerning the timing of the romantic affair. Even so, assuming she had made the reimbursements in cash, according to the testimony she shorted Wade nearly $10,0000. 

Whether you believe her testimony or not, the evidence is clear: Fani Willis made money off this scheme and that is a legal conflict of interest that requires her removal from the case.

Perpetrating a fraud on the court is an additional basis on which the judge could rely if he rules to boot Willis and team from the case.

Notwithstanding that perjury in Georgia is a felony crime, the Georgia Rules of Professional Conduct, under Rule 3.3, Candor Toward the Tribunal, are very clear on this issue:

SPECIAL ATTORNEY HIRED BY FANI WILLIS TO HELP PROSECUTE TRUMP DONATED BIG BUCKS TO HER CAMPAIGN

“A lawyer shall not knowingly… make a false statement of material fact or law to a tribunal;… offer evidence that the lawyer knows to be false.”

This is also a disbarment offense.

What evidence supports the defense claims that Willis and Wade lied to the court? Well, there’s quite a bit, in my opinion.

First, there’s the sworn testimony of Robin Yeartie , a former friend and employee of Willis. Yeartie testified that the romantic affair began as early as 2019, long before Willis became DA. She testified that she saw them with her own eyes hugging and kissing and acting like a couple.

Second, we have text messages, admitted as substantive evidence in the case, between Merchant and Bradley, a former law partner, friend and divorce attorney for Wade. 

COLBERT BLASTS FANI WILLIS FOR ENDANGERING TRUMP CASE IN GEORGIA

In a text conversation with Merchant , Bradley is asked if he though the affair began before Willis hired Wade as “special prosecutor.” Bradley responded “Absolutely.” 

Then, without being prompted, Bradley added, “It started when she left the DA’s office (to prepare to run for DA) and was judge in [the city of] south fulton.”

Thirdly, counsel for former President Trump provided cell location data evidence that circumstantially, yet powerfully, proves Wade visited Willis at the condominium she was staying in, provided to her by Yeartie, in the overnight hours on at least two separate occasions in the fall 2021, prior to the claimed start of the affair in 2022.

Lying and perpetrating a fraud on the court is enough to toss Willis from the case. It’s also enough to land her in all sorts of other hot water, personally and professionally. 

But for this hearing, if the judge believes she has lied about the timing of the affair, he can disbelieve her testimony about the cash reimbursements, and we are back where we started: 

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Fani Willis personally enriched herself by handing a lucrative contract to her lover to be “special prosecutor” and then got kickbacks from him in the form of frequent luxury travel.

Disqualifying a prosecutor from a case is a heavy ask for a judge and these things are never granted lightly. However, the scandalous facts proven in this hearing are more than sufficient to remove Willis. And if Willis is removed, her entire office gets removed.

Dismissing an indictment is also a heavy ask for a judge. Due to the actions of Willis however, dismissal is required. The indictment is structurally unsound due to prosecutorial misconduct. 

Willis has engaged in dishonest behavior not unlike what she accuses the defendants of in this case. The case is damaged beyond repair. So is the Fulton District Attorney’s Office. 

Willis needs to resign her office and allow a new person to restore honor and integrity to the largest prosecutor’s office in Georgia.

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Want to keep women runners safe? Secure the border

As a female marathoner, I prioritize high-quality running equipment, including emergency protective gear like pepper spray designed for runners. Laken Riley, a prepared runner and Augusta University student, was murdered by an illegal immigrant while jogging near her college campus late last week. 

Online running influencers are focusing on increased awareness for women’s safety while mainstream news outlets dance around the facts of the case – but the truth is that this travesty highlights an even bigger problem our country faces: 

Our lack of border security  continues to cost American lives. 

The growing list of citizens killed by illegal immigrants highlights the broader impact of our embarrassing and dangerous southern border policies. Since President Biden took office in 2021, an estimated 7.2 million illegal immigrants have crossed the southern border – equivalent to the population of the entire state of Arizona, and about 3.5 times the number of people residing in the state of New Mexico.

LAKEN RILEY’S DEATH IN GEORGIA BEGS BIG UNANSWERED QUESTIONS. HERE ARE 10

December 2023 marked the highest number of encounters at the southern border on record. While mainstream news pundits tout that crossings have recently plummeted, last month was still distinguished by the highest number of border encounters ever recorded for the month of January. 

What is even more concerning is that a record number of these migrants are coming from China as well. In the last four months alone, the Border Patrol has recorded more apprehensions of Chinese migrants  than from all of 2007 to 2020 combined

These statistics are damning – and yet, those of us raising awareness on this issue must do more than merely retell facts about the border crisis. Stats alone will not properly convey the emergency that is our lack of national security. Commentators, influencers, policy makers and even runners must say the names and tell the stories of these victims in order to bring about real change. 

WHAT I SAW AT THE BORDER AND WHAT I HOPE BIDEN UNDERSTANDS WHEN HE VISITS THIS WEEK

While it is true that evil people will always seek ways to commit wicked acts, this particular crime against Laken Riley could have been prevented by the enforcement of immigration laws. 

Border security is one of the few responsibilities inherent to a national government – after all, governments are instituted to protect their citizens – and yet, this is the duty our federal government is accomplishing least. 

Border enforcement has become so nonexistent that states have taken it upon themselves to enforce the national border in order to protect citizens. But this is a job states cannot manage on their own; it really is up to the president and Congress to fulfill this duty. 

BIDEN GOT SUCKERED INTO BORDER BATTLE HE CAN’T WIN

Congress has failed to enact significant immigration reform time and time again. But November is coming, and our lawmakers are ultimately responsible to us, the people. Perhaps Congress needs to sense urgency from their constituents in order to feel pressured into significant border and immigration reform. There are plenty of distracting wars overseas – wars that may require our attention – but we will have more and more emergencies at home if we do not enforce our sovereign borders. 

Governors of red-leaning states have scored political points by sending migrants to sanctuary cities across the United States – cities including the town of Athens, Georgia, where Laken Riley was killed. Although needed attention was drawn to the immigration crisis through these political maneuvers, perhaps governors can take it upon themselves to send migrants back to their home countries if the president and Congress refuse to act. 

If buses can be shipped all across the United States full of homeless migrants, certainly they can be turned around and sent back over the Mexican border.

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In general, the left is better at storytelling than the right is; conservatives infamously care more about facts than feelings. In this case, however, we must continue to tell the stories of these women who were wrongly killed by illegal immigrants: Lizbeth Medina , Kate Steinle, Mollie Tibbets and Laken Riley, just to name a few. 

Conservatives must bring about change by telling the truth, by saying their names, posting their pictures, and telling their stories… in order that change may actually come to fruition. 

I’m grateful that regardless of political affiliation, the running community agrees that women should be protected while doing this sport we love, but no amount of protective gear will keep women safe if our border policies continue to incentivize the easy arrival of criminals in the United States. 

In raising awareness, let’s not miss the main point of the story: an innocent, well-prepared runner was killed by an illegal immigrant . Her death was altogether avoidable, and you can point the blame squarely at our elected leaders for shirking their primary responsibility of protecting citizens.

November is coming. Let us do our part in not only raising awareness on runners’ safety, but also put pressure on our elected leaders to do their jobs and protect citizens by enforcing the United States border.

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