Trump Declares National Emergency to Confront Border Security Crisis

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On Friday morning, President Trump declared a national emergency to confront the humanitarian and security crisis on the southern border. He will direct up to $8 billion for border-wall funding in order to stop an inflow of drugs, human trafficking, and illegal immigration into the United States.

Heritage Foundation President Kay Coles James released a statement on the decision.

“Conservatives are disappointed in Congress and frustrated that its failure has led to today’s action by the president,” she said. “The omnibus legislation coupled with today’s announcement is an unacceptable resolution to a genuine national crisis.”

Trump declared the national emergency after Congress passed a spending deal that included $1.375 billion for new border wall funding—far less than the $5.7 billion that the president requested.

Read Heritage President Kay Coles James’ full statement here.

Now that Heritage has reacted, what’s your take on President Trump’s National Emergency Declaration?

Rubio at Heritage: Maduro Must Go

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Under the devastating socialist dictatorship of Nicolas Maduro, Venezuelans have no food, medicine, or opportunity. But recently, hope has sprung, and Venezuela’s people have a chance to oust Maduro and his regime for good. On Monday, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla, spoke at an event hosted by The Heritage Foundation and the International Republican Institute to discuss the latest political developments in Venezuela, Interim President Juan Guaidó, and next steps for U.S. policy.

Read more about the event highlights on The Daily Signal

Watch the event at Heritage.org

Listen to the “Heritage Explains” podcast to get up to speed on the evolving crisis

Heritage’s Ana Quintana has been following the situation in Venezuela for a long time. Read her recent article: Maduro Must Go: Venezuelans Deserve a Functioning Democracy

After the event, Rubio spoke with Heritage Action’s Executive Director Tim Chapman to discuss the future of the conservative movement.

Watch Rubio’s interview with Tim Chapman

Given that Venezuela’s collapse is destabilizing the region, what should the United States do to prevent the crisis from spreading?

After Parkland: One Year Later

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Thursday marked the one-year anniversary of the horrific shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, that resulted in the deaths of 17 students and staff members. Since the shooting, lawmakers across the country have been working to find a solution to make our schools safer. Heritage recently released new research that examines the intersection of mental illness, violence, and firearms.

“We must ensure that policy decisions regarding Second Amendment rights reflect an accurate understanding of the role mental illness does and does not play in gun violence, as well as an accurate understanding of why the United States is suffering from a crisis of untreated serious mental illness,” write Heritage experts John Malcolm and Amy Swearer.

Read the new report on mental illness, violence, and firearms

Learn about Heritage’s School Safety Initiative

Now that you’ve heard from our experts, what else can we do to make our schools safe?

We Hear You: Heritage Speaks with Black Lives Matter of Greater New York activist

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Hawk Newsome, right, founder of Black Lives Matter of Greater New York, speaks at South Bronx Community High School with Nick Cannon, a rapper, actor, and comedian. (Photo: Erik McGregor/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)

In 2017, Black Lives Matter of Greater New York founder Hawk Newsome went to protest at a pro-Trump rally in Washington, D.C. Then the unexpected happened: he took the stage—and won over the crowd. “They went from booing to cheering us on, in a matter of three minutes,” said Newsome.

Heritage’s Rob Bluey interviewed Newsome in the South Bronx to learn more about the man who is working to find common ground among Americans of all stripes. “If we really want to make America great, we do it together,” said Newsome.

Read more about Rob’s interview with Black Lives Matter leader Hawk Newsome

Listen to the full interview on The Daily Signal podcast

A large number of Heritage readers reacted to this story:

“Dear Daily Signal: Thanks for your interview with Black Lives Matter activist Hawk Newsome. It’s about time someone reached out and focused on what unites us. Reaching out creates bonds and decreases hate, and most importantly, helps all of us focus on politicians and hold them to account. We should be initiating these opportunities.I spent many years leading a nonprofit, The Food Project, which trains and places teens and young adults at the center of creating sustainable, local food systems. At its heart is bringing teens and young adults together from low income, mostly minority urban communities, with suburban, mostly white, middle class and wealthy communities. The teens and young adults learn how to work across race and class and also navigate the urban and suburban cultural divide. Powerful relationships across differences blossom because we provide structured opportunities in safe spaces for individuals to share and listen to each other’s personal stories. It’s on that level of sharing deeply personal experiences and seeing that in spite of vast differences, basic values are held on common. That’s when minds and hearts are changed. “
Pat Gray, Lincoln, Mass.

“Thank you so much for the interview with Hawk Newsome. We can’t be afraid to listen and talk. Regular media won’t do it; they need to have the deck “stacked.”I appreciate hearing this young man. He needs to be heard. Please do follow ups.”
Catherine Anderson, Walla Walla, Wash.

“This is a wonderful interview with Hawk Newsome. It’s helpful to see how this man thinks instead of all of the stereotypes we see in mainstream news and blogs—on both sides. We need more understanding of our common humanity. Please do more of these interviews—they will help heal the division and save our beloved nation.”
Mary-Jo Schumburg

Our goal for 2019 is to speak to more Americans outside of the “conservative bubble” and build bridges to different communities. Who do you think Heritage should speak with?

Heritage Responds to the State of the Union

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President Donald Trump, with Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Mike Pence looking on, delivers the State of the Union address in the chamber of the U.S. House of Representatives at the U.S. Capitol Building on Feb. 5 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

President Trump called for Congress to “choose greatness” for the country in Tuesday’s State of the Union address. He highlighted the many victories achieved by his administration in the past two years and laid out a vision for the future. Heritage has long supported many of these proposals: a national ban on late-term abortion, continuing to rebuild the military, and robust border security. One issue the president failed to address is the nation’s ballooning debt, which stands at $22 trillion amounting to $68,000 for every man, woman, and child in America.  Spending is a bipartisan problem.

Read the full Heritage analysis of Trump’s policy proposals in the State of the Union

What is your take on the State of the Union?

Heritage hosts conversations with conservatives

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Conversations with Conservatives is a group of free-market and liberty-minded members of Congress who meet regularly to discuss the most important issues of the day.

Each meeting features different conservative members of Congress. Guests so far in 2019 include Congressmen Jim Jordan of Ohio, Chip Roy of Texas, Mark Green of Tennessee, Warren Davidson of Ohio and Andy Biggs of Arizona.

On Wednesday, Bluey moderated a conversation with Reps. Warren Davidson (R-Ohio) and Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.), who shared their reactions to the State of the Union.

The meetings are streamed live on Facebook and Twitter and promoted on Heritage and The Daily Signal’s social media channels. The Heritage Foundation’s Rob Bluey moderates the conversation and takes questions from Heritage Foundation members, Heritage Action Sentinels, and other online viewers.

Follow The Heritage Foundation on Facebook

Follow The Heritage Foundation on Twitter

Heritage launched Conversations with Conservatives in March 2012 because too often the “mainstream” media won’t cover issues important to conservatives. Conversations with Conservatives gives members of Congress an opportunity to talk directly to an audience and avoid the liberal media’s filter. The Daily Signal covers each meeting.

“Too often conservative policy issues are ignored by journalists on Capitol Hill and don’t get the attention they deserve,” said Bluey. “That’s one of the reasons we created Conversations with Conservatives—to break through the liberal media filter. Just as President Trump uses Twitter to take his message directly to the American people, we want to ensure these conservative champions in Congress have a platform to show how our policy solutions lead to a better life for everyone.”

Conversations with Conservatives is aligned with Heritage’s strategic goal of expanding our reach to and influence on Congress. By moderating the conversation, we ensure Heritage’s priority issues are discussed and relations with conservative offices remain strong.

The next broadcast of Conversations with Conservatives will take place on Wednesday, March 6, at noon. The topic is health care and will feature conservative doctors in the U.S. House: Congressman Paul Gosar of Arizona, Mark Green of Tennessee, and Andy Harris of Maryland.

What questions or ideas would you like us to share at the next meeting?

Best in the Press Feb. 2 – Feb. 8, 2019

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Reaching more Americans with the conservative message is one of Heritage’s top priorities. That’s why Heritage experts are regularly advocating for conservative principles and policies in the media. Each week our Communications team assembles the “Best in the Press” of our television interviews, op-eds, and media mentions.

This week, Heritage had 64 total print mentions and op-eds. Heritage leaders and experts discussed the State of the Union on the Hugh Hewitt Show, Fox News, and Breitbart. They highlighted crucial issues in the Chicago Tribune and on the Tucker Carlson Show. Make sure you check out some of the best press clips of the week:

Kay Coles James discusses the State of the Union on The Hugh Hewitt Show

David Azerrad talks about Identity Politics with Tucker Carlson

Genevieve Wood on Fox Business: The Whole Country Deserves a Secure Border

 See all the media hits here.

If you were looking across the media landscape, where should Heritage be focusing their attention to spread the conservative message?

 

Heritage Continues to Shape Border Security Debate

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President Trump and Congress have until February 15th to negotiate a deal to secure the border. If Democrats refuse to include funding for a wall as part of a larger border security plan, we risk facing yet another government shutdown. Meanwhile, the problem of illegal border crossings will remain unresolved.

We are continuing our work to shape the border security debate. Last week, Heritage President Kay Coles James attended a meeting with President Trump and our Executive Vice President Kim Holmes attended a meeting with Vice President Pence to discuss policy solutions. On Monday, Tim Chapman, executive director of Heritage Action for America (our partner organization), attended a roundtable meeting held at the White House to make recommendations for how the Trump administration can make good on its promise to secure the border.

Tim’s message – and Heritage’s position – was clear: a serious border security plan must include a wall, strong enforcement of our immigration laws, the closing of loopholes that are being used to skirt the law, and common-sense reforms, such as replacing the unfair visa lottery with a merit-based system.

It’s now up to Congress to send a bill to the president that will secure the border.

View Heritage Action’s Toolkit on Immigration

What common sense reforms do you believe must be in a border security deal?

Heritage Denounces Virginia’s Horrifying Late-Term Abortion Proposal

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Democrats in both New York and Virginia are advocating removing restrictions on third-trimester abortions. (Photo: Tatyana Tomsickova Photography/Getty Images)

Abortion should be legal up to the moment of birth, according to Kathy Tran, a Democrat who serves in the Virginia House of Delegates. On Monday, Tran answered questions about her radical pro-abortion bill, which in addition to allowing for abortions in the third trimester would repeal many of Virginia’s commonsense safety and informed consent requirements.

On Wednesday, Virginia’s Democratic Governor Ralph Northam went a step further by stating that an unwanted child that has already been delivered should be cared for only “if that’s what the mother and family desired.” This came on the heels of New York’s Governor, two-term Democrat Andrew Cuomo, signing a bill last week that legalized abortion up to birth. Taking to social media, Heritage President Kay Coles James denounced the actions, saying, “Policymakers shouldn’t cave to the well-funded radical pro-abortion activist groups peddling these extreme laws in states across the country. We can do better!”

View @KayColesJames tweets on this issue (Follow her on Twitter!)

Read Rachel Del Guidice’s commentary, “The Culture of Death is Never Satisfied,” in The Daily Signal

What’s happening in your state related to abortion laws?

Good News on Economic Freedom, Next Steps on New Trade Deal

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Last Friday, Heritage launched the 2019 Index of Economic Freedom. Now in its 25th year of publication, the Index provides a snapshot of a country’s level of economic freedom according to key indicators, such as business freedom and government integrity. Based on their scores, countries are assigned a global rank. In 2019, the United States rose six places to 12th highest in the world, and its overall score is the highest recorded since 2011. This is due to market-friendly policies passed by Congress and adopted by President Trump – such as tax reform and deregulation – policies that you helped to make a reality through your support of Heritage!

We have a chance to improve the economic prospects of America even further by improving the new United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement (USMCA), which was signed by the leaders of all three countries in November. On Monday, Heritage released a highly anticipated analysis of the USMCA. While there is a lot to like about the new deal, there are also elements that should give conservatives pause, such as minimum wage requirements and liberal social policies on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Congress will have opportunities to make technical adjustments before the implementing legislation is introduced. Heritage’s Government Relations team is making sure those lawmakers and their staff know the findings and recommendations in our report.

View the 2019 Index of Economic Freedom

Read Heritage’s analysis of the USMCA

Given that higher economic freedom improves people’s quality of life, why is socialism growing in popularity in America? What changes would you like Congress to consider as they finalize the trade agreement with Mexico and Canada?

 

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