Daily Fix, July 15


*Rep. Jason Chaffetz’s recent critiques of the TSA has landed him accusations of illegally disclosing sensitive security information. (Washington Post) The Department of Homeland Security wrote Chaffetz a letter complaining of his releasing the sensitive information, and then released the letter to the press. So, Chaffetz disclosed sensitive information in his quest to protect the American people from security lapses, and the DHS let everyone know that the information was sensitive in their quest to tell Chaffetz he released sensitive information. Good work people!

*And, in other TSA news, the D.C. circuit court of the U.S. Court of Appeals has ruled that full body X-Ray scanning machines are constitutional. (The Hill) Constitutional, maybe; creepy, definitely.

*Senator Hatch’s idea to hold a Medicaid field hearing in Utah may have backfired. Following Thursday’s hearing, the Voices for Utah Children advocacy group has written an op-ed lambasting Governor Herbert and Senator Hatch for telling “half-truths” about Medicaid and CHIP in Utah. They claim that Utah Medicaid has become more efficient by covering more children for less money while maintaining quality medical care. And The Hill has taken notice. Probably not the publicity Sen. Hatch was hoping for.

*Debt ceiling “talks” news: the Club for Growth is against the McConnell-Reid-Pelosi deal – no surprise there; Charles Krauthammer advises the Republican House to call Obama on his bluff – “A long-term deal or nothing? The Republican House should immediately pass a short-term debt-ceiling hike of $500 billion containing $500 billion in budget cuts. That would give us about five months to work on something larger.” – Krauthammer reminds us that if Republicans want to get spending under control, they have to win the Presidency; and, Senator Lee “will not be supporting the cut, run, and hide plan to raise the debt ceiling. [He] support[s] the House’s position to vote on [the] #cutcapbalance ACT.”

*About 800 teachers rallied in Ogden to protest the school district’s decision to not negotiate their contract with union leaders this year. (SL Trib) OK – they weren’t all teachers. Included in the group were “union members, including teamsters, machinists, federal government employees, plumbers and the AFL-CIO[,]” and of course “Greg Johnson, an executive committee member of the National Education Association who flew in from Oklahoma to speak at the rally.” The new contract provides that collective bargaining will resume next year, only it will include bargaining with all 700 teachers, not just the 500 who belong to the Ogden Education Association. The nerve.

*Bob Bernick from Utah Policy calls for the state’s redistricting software to include the locations of the current incumbents so that participants can draw maps that might actually be considered. (Utah Policy) He argues that “everyone knows that most incumbents will be given their own district. And where that is not possible, districts will be carved up to harm more of the minority Democrats than the majority Republicans. That is just pure, simple politics.” Has has a point.

*A Utah man has temporarily lost his passport and flying privileges after pelting a Southwest crew with pretzels and peanuts after being told that he could not smoke an electronic cigarette. (Washington Post) Who says airplane food isn’t good for anything?

*And finally, Jerry Brown, Governor of the great (bankrupt) state of California, has signed a bill to add “lessons on gay and lesbians” to social studies curriculum in public schools. (SL Trib) Awesome! “California law already requires schools to teach about women, African Americans, Mexican Americans, entrepreneurs, Asian Americans, European Americans, American Indians and labor. The Legislature over the years also has prescribed specific lessons about the Irish potato famine and the Holocaust, among other topics.” To paraphrase Orwell, I suppose California law could just require that schools teach about all the historical contributions of all groups equally, but we know that some groups are, ahem … more equal.


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