The Alabama Supreme Court just issued a major ruling on the sanctity of life for unborn babies and, quite predictably, Democrats are freaking out and casting blame for the decision on former President Donald Trump.

Alabama's high court ruled that frozen embryos created by in vitro fertilization count as "unborn children" under the state's law and, as such, anyone who destroys those frozen embryos can be held liable for the wrongful death of a child, CNN reported.

The decision sparked instant outrage from the left, including blame for Trump and the U.S. Supreme Court, as well as furious invective toward pro-life Christians and overly dire predictions about the potentially grim and far-reaching consequences and repercussions of the court's determination.

Frozen embryos constitute protected human life, court says

At issue in the case was an incident in December 2020 in which the frozen embryos of three sets of would-be parents were destroyed in a Mobile fertility clinic when a patient supposedly removed them from the cryogenic storage facility but dropped them on the floor after suffering freezer burns on their hands.

The parents sued for wrongful death under a particular state law but lost at the district court level, as that court declared that the "cryopreserved, in vitro embryos involved in this case do not fit within the definition of a 'person' or 'child.'"

Yet, on appeal, the Alabama Supreme Court reversed and remanded that decision back to the district court after the justices determined that "extrauterine children," or unborn babies "located outside of a biological uterus at the time they are killed," are considered to be "children" under the state's Wrongful Death of a Minor law that allows parents to file punitive lawsuits when their children are killed.

The court's majority observed that unborn children -- whether located inside or out of the womb -- have a right to life, and Chief Justice Tom Parker wrote in a concurring opinion, "The People of Alabama have declared the public policy of this State to be that unborn human life is sacred. We believe that each human being, from the moment of conception, is made in the image of God, created by Him to reflect His likeness."

Anti-religious leftists lose their minds

The CNN article shared numerous quotes from critics of the ruling who issued dire warnings about the potential ramifications that will stem from the Alabama Supreme Court's determination that frozen embryos constitute a protected human life.

That includes claims that clinics, doctors, and even would-be parents will now be too afraid of potential civil liability to move forward with IVF pregnancies, and assertions that the same will never be able to discard unused or even unviable frozen embryos, but rather will be forced to store them in perpetuity for generations to come so as to avoid a possible lawsuit if the embryo is ever destroyed.

None of what was in the CNN article compared, however, to the over-the-top hyperbole of MSNBC columnist Sarah Posner, who decried the Alabama ruling as a "terrifying preview" of what was to come in a nationwide "theocratic dystopia" if former President Trump was re-elected to another term, in that he and his allies would seek to impose a form of strict "Christian nationalism" of the sort that she insisted was exemplified by the expressed religious faith of the Alabama justices in the ruling.

In her fever dream, the columnist envisioned not just the imminent end of IVF pregnancies across the country, but also efforts to outlaw all forms of contraception, not to mention "sweeping anti-abortion and anti-LGBTQ policies," if not forced Christianity for all, regardless of their particular religious or secular beliefs.

Biden denounces Alabama embryo ruling

Even President Joe Biden got in on the act with a statement that said, "Today, in 2024 in America, women are being turned away from emergency rooms and forced to travel hundreds of miles for health care, while doctors fear prosecution for providing an abortion. And now, a court in Alabama put access to some fertility treatments at risk for families who are desperately trying to get pregnant.

"The disregard for women’s ability to make these decisions for themselves and their families is outrageous and unacceptable," he continued. "Make no mistake: this is a direct result of the overturning of Roe v. Wade."

"I know that folks are worried about what they’re seeing happening to women all across America. I am too. I hear about it everywhere I go," Biden added. "My message is: The Vice President and I are fighting for your rights. We’re fighting for the freedom of women, for families, and for doctors who care for these women. And we won’t stop until we restore the protections of Roe v. Wade in federal law for all women in every state."

In 2015, when the Supreme Court ruled in favor of same-sex marriage, there were warnings issued at the time that the decision could perversely lead to state-sanctioned discrimination against individuals with sincere religious beliefs in opposition to homosexuality.

Those warnings appeared to be prescient, as Justice Samuel Alito pointed out in a statement Tuesday about a case involving two prospective jury members who were dismissed from the pool due to their Christian beliefs from a legal dispute involving a lesbian plaintiff, the Washington Examiner reported.

The high court did not take up a challenge involving the two Christian jurors dismissed from service because of their faith, but Alito nonetheless used the opportunity to reiterate his concerns about the real-world repercussions of the court's prior decision nine years earlier.

Jurors dismissed from case due to Christian beliefs

The case in question is Missouri Department of Corrections v. Finney, which sprung from a lawsuit involving plaintiff Jean Finney, a lesbian, who alleged that her former employer, the Missouri Department of Corrections, had wrongfully discriminated against her based on her sexual orientation.

During the jury selection process in district court for that lawsuit, Finney's attorney questioned the prospective jurors on whether they were Christian and held the belief that homosexuality was a sin, then moved for the judge to dismiss from the jury pool three members who replied affirmatively about their sincere religious beliefs in terms of homosexuality.

The state appealed on the grounds that the prospective jurors had been discriminated against because of their religious faith, but an appeals court upheld the dismissals on the parsed explanation that they were rejected for their beliefs about homosexuality -- and the assumption that, as such, they couldn't be impartial and unbiased toward the lesbian plaintiff, even as the jurors insisted otherwise -- and not because of their Christian faith more generally.

The "holding exemplifies the danger that I anticipated" in 2015 ruling

On Tuesday, as part of a lengthy orders list issued following a Supreme Court conference, Justice Alito included a five-page statement near the end that raised his concerns about what had occurred with the dismissal of the Christian jurors.

"I agree that we should not grant certiorari in this case, which is complicated by a state-law procedural issue," Alito wrote. "But I write because I am concerned that the lower court’s reasoning may spread and may be a foretaste of things to come."

"In this case, the court below reasoned that a person who still holds traditional religious views on questions of sexual morality is presumptively unfit to serve on a jury in a case involving a party who is a lesbian," he continued. "That holding exemplifies the danger that I anticipated in Obergefell v. Hodges, namely, that Americans who do not hide their adherence to traditional religious beliefs about homosexual conduct will be “labeled as bigots and treated as such” by the government."

"The opinion of the Court in that case made it clear that the decision should not be used in that way, but I am afraid that this admonition is not being heeded by our society," the conservative jurist added.

"Fundamental rights" must be respected, especially by the judiciary

Justice Alito went on to address the relevant background information and specially called out the "tricky" question about religious beliefs from Finney's attorney that "conflated two separate issues: whether the prospective jurors believed that homosexual conduct is sinful and whether they believed that
gays and lesbians should not enjoy the legal rights possessed by others."

"Before us, the Department of Corrections argues that these for-cause dismissals were unconstitutional, and I agree that the Court of Appeals’ reasoning raises a very serious and important question that we should address in an appropriate case," he continued. "The judiciary, no less than the other branches of State and Federal Government, must respect people’s fundamental rights, and among these are the right to the free exercise of religion and the right to the equal protection of the laws."

"When a court, a quintessential state actor, finds that a person is ineligible to serve on a jury because of his or her religious beliefs, that decision implicates fundamental rights," the conservative jurist asserted.

"I would vote to grant review in this case were it not for the fact that the Court of Appeals concluded that the Department of Corrections did not properly preserve an objection to dismissal of the two potential jurors and, thus, that their dismissal was reviewable under state law only for plain error," Alito concluded. "Because this state-law question would complicate our review, I reluctantly concur in the denial of certiorari."

President Joe Biden, both with and without the approval of Congress, has all but emptied the U.S. military's armories and coffers in his bid to support Ukraine in its desperate battle to fend off the Russian invasion that began in February 2022.

Now the U.S. Army's Europe and Africa Command is warning that it will essentially go broke within a few months if House Republicans don't agree to pass the latest foreign aid package devised by the Senate, about $60 billion of which is earmarked for the Ukraine conflict, the Daily Mail reported.

The stunning admission not only provides a glimpse of how dangerously depleted the U.S. military's budget and stockpiles have become due to Biden's insistent support of the Ukrainian war effort but is also the latest example of the guilt-tripping and fear-mongering that the administration and political establishment have resorted to as a means to browbeat hesitant lawmakers into voting for even more taxpayer-funded aid for Ukraine.

Funding set to run out within months for key U.S. Army command

CNN reported that while Congress and the White House continue to bicker over a stalled $95 billion foreign aid package, about $60 billion of which is earmarked for Ukraine, the U.S. Army's Europe and Africa Command has spent around $430 million of its own budget to continue Ukraine-related assistance and training since the beginning of the fiscal year in October 2023.

Now one unnamed senior Army official has warned that without a full 2024 defense budget or any supplemental funding for Ukraine, the command only has around $3 billion available to cover upwards of $5 billion in costs for both normal activities and operations as well as its Ukraine-related expenditures -- and that funding could completely run out in just a few more months.

"If we don’t get a base budget, if we don’t get Ukraine supplemental [funding package], if the government shuts down, if we get nothing else and nothing changes from today," the anonymous official cautioned, "we will run out of [operations and maintenance] funding in May."

Another unnamed official from the Army command suggested that, if operational funds weren't shifted from lower-priority projects within the budget to cover for the Ukraine-related efforts, "We would cease to exist."

Army will be forced to "rob Peter to pay Paul" if Congress doesn't act

CNN further reported that Army Sec. Christine Wormuth, the senior civilian leader tasked with governing the military branch's annual budget, told the outlet that the Army will be forced to "sort of rob Peter to pay Paul" if Congress -- meaning House Republicans -- don't rapidly approve this year's annual defense budget or the supplemental foreign aid package, two-thirds of which is destined to be spent on Ukraine in some form or fashion.

"Every incremental dollar I have, it’s very important where I put that dollar. And I’m constantly choosing between, do we put it on barracks? Do I put it on enlistment incentives? Do I put it on exercises? Do I put it on modernization? I don’t have spare cash to be just sort of donating some of that," she said, and added, "This was money that we anticipated to be replenished, obviously, by the supplemental."

The unnamed senior Army official also ramped up his fear-mongering by speculating about the broader consequences of Congress failing to approve the funding that President Biden and others have demanded. They warned, "It’s all interconnected. And what we’re doing in one space is impacting us everywhere. We renege on this stuff -- you don’t think China’s watching out there in the Pacific? You don’t think that’s going to have direct impacts on the Pacific? … Russia is definitely watching."

How much has already been spent -- and will be spent -- on Ukraine support

According to the Council on Foreign Relations, as of the end of FY2023 last October, the U.S. has spent at least $75.4 billion on aid to Ukraine since February 2022 -- including at least $46.3 billion in military-related assistance, $26.4 billion in financial assistance, and $2.7 billion in humanitarian aid, though that only counts what has been expended through appropriations bills and doesn't necessarily include all of the U.S. funding that has benefited Ukraine over the past two years.

As for this latest $95 billion supplemental funding package, of which around $60 billion is set to support Ukraine, the Associated Press reported that roughly half of that is earmarked to fund the purchase of weapons and munitions for Ukraine or to support additional military training and intelligence sharing, while around $10 billion is destined to help fund Ukraine's government operations and support the nation's private sector.

It was also noted that roughly one-third of the total amount for Ukraine wouldn't directly go to that embattled nation at all, but rather would be spent here in the U.S. to help replenish the depleted stockpiles of weapons, ammunition, and equipment that were previously sent to Ukraine via congressional legislation or unilaterally through President Biden's drawdown authority.

Biden himself got in on the action of attempting to shame House Republicans into agreeing to support the latest legislative package, as he told reporters on Monday, "They’re making a big mistake not responding," and added, "Look, the way they’re walking away from the threat of Russia, the way they’re walking away from NATO, the way they’re walking away from meeting our obligations, it’s just shocking. I mean, they’re wild. I’ve never seen anything like this."

President Joe Biden's White House once considered firing U.S. Homeland Security Secretary (DHS) Alejandro Mayorkas.

According to a new report from the New Yorker, the White House considered firing Mayorkas in the spring of 2023 in an attempt to appease critics of the administration's mishandling of the southern border crisis. The firing, though, never happened.

Now, it might be Congress that gives Mayorkas the boot, as he was just recently impeached by the U.S. House of Representatives.

But, it remains unclear whether the Democrat-controlled U.S. Senate will vote to remove him from office.

The details

The New Yorkers' source is "three administration officials."

"[A]ccording to three Administration officials, during a White House meeting in late spring, Biden’s chief of staff, Ron Klain, raised the possibility of firing Mayorkas, just to reset the Administration’s message," the outlet reports.

It appears, however, that Klain disputes this reporting. He told the outlet, "I never suggested firing Secretary Mayorkas. I consider Ali a friend and a dedicated public servant."

Another revelation from the New Yorker is that the Biden administration stopped Mayorkas from publicly referring to the southern border crisis as a "crisis."

"The White House had instructed Mayorkas to avoid using the word 'crisis in his public appearances, but it was obvious to most observers that there was one," the outlet reports.

Will Mayorkas be removed from office?

The U.S. House of Representatives, under the leadership of Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA), voted to impeach Mayorkas last Tuesday. He was specifically impeached for failing to uphold America's immigration laws.

America has seen record levels of illegal immigration, via the U.S.-Mexico border, during the administration of Biden. And, it is only expected to continue, as there is no sign that the federal government is doing anything to secure the border.

Fox, in January, reported, "December broke records for migrant encounters at the southern border, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) confirmed on Friday, as it released numbers showing that there were a record 302,000 migrant encounters at the southern border."

With regard to Mayorkas, the question now is how the U.S. Senate is going to handle the matter. While the House can impeach, it is the Senate that gets the ultimate say in terms of removal.

The Senate is currently in the hands of the Democrats and, specifically, U.S. Sen. Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY). Thus, if Schumer does decide to hold an impeachment trial, Mayorkas would be expected to be acquitted.

According to a new poll, more Americans believe that former President Donald Trump will win the 2024 general election than believe that President Biden will win. 

The poll comes from the Economist and YouGov.

The pollster surveyed 1,671 U.S. Adult Citizens between Feb. 11 and Feb. 13, 2024. The margin of error is plus or minus three percentage points.

The poll covered a wide variety of topics, but, here, we will focus on the 2024 general election questions.

Trump will win

Among the questions that pollsters asked participants is this:

Regardless of who you prefer, who do you think would win the presidential election if Joe Biden were the Democratic candidate and Donald Trump were the Republican candidate?

This is certainly not your typical 2024 general election hypothetical. Rather, the pollster is asking the participant to put his or her personal preference aside and to evaluate the current state of the race for the presidency.

Participants were given three options: Joe Biden, Donald Trump, and "Not sure." Trump came out on top with a 45% plurality. Biden came in second with 34%. And, "not sure" came in third with 21% of the vote.

In other words, it appears 45% are convinced that Trump will win the election, 34% are convinced that Biden will win, and 21% still believe that the election could go either way.

Something worth highlighting is that Trump received the overwhelming support of his party, namely 84%, whereas Biden only got 73% support from his party. Perhaps even more significant, though, is that Trump received from independents more support than Biden: 45% to 21%.

It's a tie

The pollster also asked the more typical question, that is, "If an election for president were going to be held now and the Democratic nominee was Joe Biden and the Republican nominee was Donald Trump, would you vote for Joe Biden, Donald Trump, 'Other,' 'Not sure,' 'I would not vote?'"

The result was a tie with both Biden and Trump receiving 44 percent of the vote. 6% went to "other," 4% to "Not sure," and 3% to "I would not vote."

Here, Trump, once again, won the support of the independents: 45% for Trump compared to 27% for Biden.

Currently, Real Clear Politics' poll aggregator has Trump beating Biden in the 2024 general election by, on average, 1.1 percentage points.

Although Trump, in recent months, has been beating Biden in the vast majority of hypothetical 2024 polls, there are some outliers - including one from Quinnipiac University that has Biden up by 6 percentage points - that have kept Trump from pulling away from Biden.

A judge has banned former President Donald Trump from doing business in New York for three years. 

Fox News reports that this is part of Judge Arthur Engoron's ruling in the civil fraud case that New York Attorney General Letitia James (D) brought against Trump.

After campaigning on a promise to "get Trump," James accused Trump of having inflated his assets on bank loan documents.

Engoron, who has been described as a "clubhouse Democrat," previously found Trump guilty of fraud, and, on Friday, he issued his ruling in the case.

Over $450 million

CNBC reports that Engoron has ordered Trump to pay over $450 million in "total penalties."

Per the outlet:

A New York judge on Friday ordered Donald Trump to pay about $454 million in total penalties as part of his ruling in the former president’s civil business fraud trial. The staggering figure includes about $355 million in disgorgement, a term for returning ill-gotten gains, plus more than $98 million in prejudgment interest that will accrue every day until it is paid, according to a spokesperson for the attorney general’s office.

In addition to this, Trump has been banned from operating a business in the state of New York for three years, and he has been barred from applying for a loan in New York for two years.

Other aspects of Engoron's ruling apply to some of Trump's family members and associates.

Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, for example, have been barred from serving as an officer or director of any New York corporation or legal entity for two years. And, former Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg has been permanently barred from holding certain positions in New York companies.

"Corrupt"

Both Trump and his legal team have released statements criticizing Engoron's ruling.

"This is Russia, this is China, this is the same game, all comes out of the DOJ. It all comes out of Biden. It’s a witch-hunt against his political opponent, the likes of which our country has never seen before, you see it in third world countries, banana republics, but you don’t see it here," Trump said.

Trump further described Engoron and James as "corrupt." "These are radical left Democrats, they are lunatics, and it’s election interference," he said.

Trump has made it clear that he will appeal Engoron's ruling.

Legal experts do believe that Trump will be able to get Engoron's ruling overturned - provided that he can get away from courts like Engoron's, where there is a heavy Democrat bias.

President Joe Biden's initial broad plans to cancel hundreds of billions of dollars in outstanding student loan debts for millions of borrowers was blocked last year by the Supreme Court, but that hasn't stopped the Biden administration from continuing its efforts to forgive massive amounts of student loan debt through other smaller and more targeted programs.

The Biden administration on Thursday unveiled yet another student loan debt relief proposal under consideration that is purportedly aimed at borrowers experiencing financial hardship, the Washington Examiner reported.

Very few specific details have been released thus far, such as an estimated total of forgiven debt or eligibility thresholds for borrowers, as the proposed rule is reportedly still being internally debated and will undergo a public comment period, both of which could result in changes before it takes effect.

Relief targeted toward borrowers facing "financial hardships"

The Examiner reported that Department of Education Undersecretary James Kvaal announced the new student loan debt relief proposal in a statement on Thursday and said, "College is meant to lead to a better life, but too many students end up struggling due to their student debt."

"The ideas we are outlining today will allow us to help struggling borrowers who are experiencing hardships in their lives, and they are part of President Biden’s overall plan to give breathing room to as many student loan borrowers as possible," he added. "It’s an important part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s permanent solutions to the problem of unaffordable loans."

The Associated Press reported that the proposal targets several different categories of borrowers who could be granted relief under the new rule, with the primary benefactors being those who are facing some sort of financial hardship that makes loan repayment difficult.

There are a wide range of factors that would be considered to determine if a borrower is facing hardship, but the language of the proposal is "expansive" and vague and ultimately leaves it up to the Education secretary to make a final determination on what will constitute eligibility for relief.

Other provisions within the new proposal

The AP report noted that some of the other categories of proposed relief for student loan borrowers with outstanding debt include a reset of the loan back to its original amount to cancel accrued interest by up to $10,000 or $20,000 for individual or married borrowers, respectively.

Another provision would potentially cancel up to the entirety of a remaining balance if the student loan was older than 20 or 25 years, depending upon the type of loan received.

The plan would also cover borrowers who attended a "low-value program" and now find themselves unable to afford loan repayments, and would spread awareness about other pre-existing and targeted loan forgiveness programs that borrowers may be unaware of, such as relief for those who worked in public service or who attended a school that has since been closed and decertified.

More than $136 billion in student loan debt forgiven by Biden admin thus far

The unveiling of this new plan comes less than a month after the Education Department announced that it had just approved student loan debt relief of approximately $4.9 billion for more than 73,000 borrowers under the income-driven repayment (IDR) forgiveness and Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) programs.

The administration bragged at that time that the new approvals raised the total relief granted thus far since Biden took office to more than $136.6 billion for more than 3.7 million borrowers.

Education Sec. Miguel Cardona said in that announcement last month, "The Biden-Harris Administration has worked relentlessly to fix our country's broken student loan system and address the needless hurdles and administrative inaccuracies that, in the past, kept borrowers from getting the student debt forgiveness they deserved."

"The nearly $5 billion in additional debt relief announced today will go to teachers, social workers, and other public servants whose service to our communities have earned them Public Service Loan Forgiveness, as well as borrowers qualifying for income-driven repayment forgiveness because their payments are for the first time being accurately accounted for," he added. "Thanks to President Biden's leadership, we're approving this loan forgiveness while moving full speed ahead in our efforts to deliver even greater debt relief, and help more borrowers get on a faster track to loan forgiveness under our new, affordable SAVE repayment plan."

Restauranteurs and the culinary world are in mourning after hearing of the death of a famous award-winning and well-regarded chef in New York City.

David Bouley, who blended French cuisine with a dash of Japanese technique to create the New American style of fine dining, passed away on Monday at the age of 70, The New York Times reported.

His death was confirmed by his wife, Nicole Bartelme, who revealed that Bouley succumbed to a heart attack at their home in Kent, Connecticut.

Created and inspired new culinary styles and a generation of top chefs

Bouley was born in 1953 in Storr, Connecticut, to parents who were the children of immigrants from France, and spent much of his childhood at his maternal grandparents' farm in Woonsocket, Rhode Island, where his love of cooking with fresh ingredients first began, according to The Times.

After graduating from the University of Connecticut in Storr, he spent time studying the culinary arts at the prestigious Sorbonne in Paris, France, and further honed his craft under other famous French chefs before returning to the United States, specifically New York City, in the 1980s.

It was in Manhattan's TriBeCa neighborhood that he launched what would become an influential and legendary career as a top chef, according to Eater New York, initially at Montrachet, then later with the first of several eponymously named Bouley restaurants in different locations, each with a slightly different theme, over several decades.

Within the last decade or so, Bouley began experimenting with certain Japanese styles of cooking that he infused into his own style, and more recently shifted his focus toward making health and nutrition a highlight of his creations in the kitchen.

Throughout his career, per Eater, Bouley also served as a sort of inspiration and mentor for numerous other younger chefs who trained under him in his restaurants and then went on to open up fine dining establishments of their own.

Awards and honors

The Associated Press reported that several of Bouley's restaurants were well-reviewed and a few were even awarded coveted Michelin stars. The chef himself was also twice honored by the James Beard Foundation with the title of Outstanding Chef, in 1995 and 2000, and his Bouley restaurant earned the Outstanding Restaurant award in 1991.

The Times noted that Bouley, in 2015, was the first American to be honored as a culinary ambassador of Japan, and in 2022, the French culture ministry honored him with the title of "chevalier" in recognition of his "creative and visionary contributions to the French culinary arts.

Per the AP, Bouley was widely regarded as "part of a culinary vanguard in the 1980s that created the New American style and turned fine dining into an expressive art form, leading to the rise of rock star chefs."

Helped keep first responders fed in the aftermath of 9/11

One particularly worthy highlight of Bouley's culinary career, per The Times, was his reaction to the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001, after which he turned his self-named bakery located near Ground Zero into a base camp for first responders.

Backed by a $5.8 million contract with the Red Cross and a huge team of employees and volunteers, he cooked and served tens of thousands of meals with fresh ingredients every day to help feed construction and rescue workers.

The Times noted that Bouley is survived by his wife, Nicole Bartelme, who is an artist and the founder of the TriBeCa Film Festival, along with five siblings and 14 nieces and nephews, though no children of his own.

It has become abundantly clear to a majority of Americans, particularly in recent weeks, that the diminishment of President Joe Biden's mental faculties and cognitive capabilities has reached a dangerously concerning level.

Now some elected Republican officials, such as West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, are urging Vice President Kamala Harris and Biden's Cabinet to invoke the U.S. Constitution's 25th Amendment and remove the sitting president from power, The Hill reported.

It is a rather ironic, and somewhat humorous, turnabout in light of the multitude of similar but unfulfilled Democratic demands that former President Donald Trump be removed from office via the 25th Amendment throughout his four years in the White House.

The 25th Amendment's process for removing a sitting president

In the aftermath of the assassination of former President John F. Kennedy, and likely with an eye toward the alleged stroke-induced incapacitation of former President Woodrow Wilson, the 25th Amendment was passed and added to the U.S. Constitution to establish procedures for replacing presidents and vice presidents "in the event of death, removal, resignation, or incapacitation."

Section 4 specifically lays out a process by which the sitting vice president, in conjunction with a majority of the executive Cabinet, can inform Congress of their determination that the sitting president "is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office," at which point the VP assumes the role of Acting President.

Since its inception, Section 4 of the 25th Amendment has never been formally invoked, though it was often threatened and used as a political cudgel countless times by Democrats against former President Trump throughout much of his tenure in office. Now, Republicans have flipped the script and are calling for it to be invoked against President Biden.

Evidence of Biden's mental decline too much to be ignored any longer

In a three-page letter sent Thursday to VP Harris, West Virginia AG Morrisey wrote, "For too long, Americans have had to stand by and watch as their President has experienced a profound cognitive decline. Over the last few months alone, President Biden has mixed up world leaders and political figures, strained to address basic issues in public speeches, and wandered out of events in a disoriented state."

"These serious mental missteps have equally serious consequences," he continued and provided a few examples as well as cited polls that show a substantial majority of Americans have real concerns about Biden's mental health and well-being.

"But considering recent revelations in Special Counsel Robert Hur’s report, Americans should not be forced to swallow their concerns and stand by any longer," Morrisey wrote and emphasized, "I am writing to urge you to invoke your powers under Section 4 of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment and declare that President Biden is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office."

He went on to quote some of the findings of the special counsel who investigated Biden's willful retention of classified documents after leaving office but declined to pursue criminal charges in large part because of his doubts that a jury would convict the "elderly man with a poor memory" and "diminished faculties" plus "limited precision and recall" on a wide range of important issues.

This is exactly what the 25th Amendment was intended to deal with

"The Twenty-Fifth Amendment was designed for times like these," Morrisey wrote in the letter to Harris, and further asserted, "We need a president who is mentally fit."

He also took issue with Harris' dismissal of the special counsel's report as "politically motivated" and, after providing even more examples of President Biden's recent blunders and gaffes, argued, "These and other moments confirm that there’s more at play here than politics. Special Counsel Hur’s
report is one more piece of evidence on a growing pile that shows that America is facing a genuine crisis of leadership."

Morrisey acknowledged that invocation of the 25th Amendment was an "extreme measure," but suggested to Harris that "if you can look
beyond your personal relationship with the President and evaluate the situation objectively, I’m confident you’ll conclude that now is the time for extreme measures."

Putting Harris in a no-win box

In closing, the West Virginia AG boxed in the former California AG with an appeal to her prosecutorial background and said, "If you nevertheless insist that the President is mentally fit, then you should call on the Attorney General to pursue appropriate charges for the President’s willful mishandling of documents."

"After all, the Special Counsel declined to prosecute in large part because he thought President Biden’s profound forgetfulness would make it hard to prove mens rea," he added. "If President Biden is sharp enough to run a country, then he is sharp enough to act willfully. And as a former prosecutor, I expect that you want to see justice done in every case -- even one involving a president."

Former President Donald Trump finally echoed the longstanding concerns of GOP base voters about Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel as he recently expressed dissatisfaction with her leadership of that organization over the past few years.

On Tuesday, Trump confirmed in a statement that his preferred choice to replace McDaniel as the RNC chair was Michael Whatley, the current chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party, Breitbart reported.

He also revealed that he wanted to see Lara Trump, his daughter-in-law, and Chris LaCivita, his senior and co-campaign manager, take on the roles of RNC co-chair and the organization's chief operating officer, respectively.

Trump picks Whatley to replace McDaniel as RNC chair

"The RNC MUST be a good partner in the Presidential election. It must do the work we expect from the National Party and do it flawlessly," former President Trump said in a statement released Tuesday by his campaign.

"That means helping to ensure fair and transparent elections across the country, getting out the vote everywhere -- even in parts of the country where it won’t be easy -- and working with my campaign, as the Republican presumptive nominee for President, to win this election and MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!" he continued.

"For these reasons, I think my friend Michael Whatley should be the RNC’s next leader," Trump said. "Michael has been with me from the beginning, has done a great job in his home state of North Carolina, and is committed to election integrity, which we must have to keep fraud out of our election so it can’t be stolen."

Also names daughter-in-law Lara and co-campaign manager LaCivita for key RNC roles

Former President Trump wasn't finished there, though, as he stated, "My very talented daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, has agreed to run as the RNC Co-Chair. Lara is an extremely talented communicator and is dedicated to all that MAGA stands for. She has told me she wants to accept this challenge and would be GREAT!"

"I have also asked Chris LaCivita, in whom I have full confidence, to assume the role of, in effect, Chief Operating Officer of the Committee," he continued. "Chris will manage the RNC’s day-to-day operations so it will become a fighting machine for 2024 and use all the tools available to win for the American people."

"This group of three is highly talented, battle-tested, and smart. They have my complete and total endorsement to lead the Republican National Committee," Trump concluded along with a final shot at McDaniel that alluded to accusations of financial mismanagement at the RNC under her leadership, as he added, "Every penny will be used properly. New Day."

Trump's proposed new RNC leadership team not too surprising

Politico reported that former President Trump's endorsement of a new leadership team for the RNC to replace McDaniel doesn't guarantee that they will all be accepted to serve in the various named roles, though a confirmation vote on their appointments by senior RNC members is likely just a formality.

Trump's pick of Whatley as McDaniel's replacement, which had been rumored in recent days, was not particularly surprising, given Whatley's success in leading the North Carolina GOP, his role in helping Trump win that state in prior elections, and his focus on making combatting alleged election fraud a top priority.

Nor is his choice as Lara Trump to serve as RNC co-chair a surprise, as she was been an active and loyal surrogate on his behalf in the 2016 and 2020 campaigns, and had continued in that role in the current election cycle.

As for LaCivita, he has also served Trump loyally since the 2016 campaign and, if confirmed to be the RNC's new COO, would assume those day-to-day management responsibilities in addition to his current role as a co-campaign manager for Trump's current re-election effort, according to Politico.

That would likely involve him splitting his time between the Trump campaign's headquarters in South Florida and the RNC headquarters in Washington D.C., with his top priority being achieving victory for the former president in the crucial swing states that typically help decide close elections.

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