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Archive for January 24th, 2011

Early Morning Swim

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 24th, 2011 5:47 am by HL

Early Morning Swim


In New Era of Civility, GOP Says Obama Born ‘Near America’

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 24th, 2011 5:46 am by HL

In New Era of Civility, GOP Says Obama Born ‘Near America’
Fake news by Andy Borowitz In a memo, House Speaker John Boehner explained, “From now on, we will say that he was born nearish America, and perhaps even as close as Cuba.” Fake news by Andy Borowitz By Andy Borowitz

In a memo, House Speaker John Boehner explained, “From now on, we will say that he was born nearish America, and perhaps even as close as Cuba.”


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Justice Scalia To Give Constitutional Lesson On Capitol Hill

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 24th, 2011 5:45 am by HL

Justice Scalia To Give Constitutional Lesson On Capitol Hill
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, described just last week by a Washington law professor as “the first real celebrity justice” for his controversial public…

Lara M. Gardner: Mexico: The House the U.S. Has Set on Fire
Immigration reform is constantly on the U.S. agenda, yet it isn’t really about reform; it is about racism, ignorance, and fear. Americans blame their woes on Mexico’s victims.

Visitors For WikiLeaks Suspect Turned Away At Quantico
QUANTICO, Va. — Two backers of a jailed Army private suspected of passing classified documents to the WikiLeaks website say their car was towed after…

HuffPost Radio: Both Sides Now w/ Huffington & Matalin State of the Union (and Obama)
This week, Mary and Arianna share a strong dislike of the Tiger Dearest school of parenting, but split on whether Lieberman’s exit is good for America.


Glenn Beck’s Rhetoric Inspires More Death Threats

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 24th, 2011 5:44 am by HL

Glenn Beck’s Rhetoric Inspires More Death Threats

The New York Times recently reported that frequent Glenn Beck target Frances Fox Piven has been receiving death threats. The threats against Piven are the latest in a growing series of threats and incidents of violence linked to Beck’s extremist rhetoric.

NY Times: “Spotlight From Glenn Beck Brings a CUNY Professor Threats”

NY Times: According To Piven, “Anonymous Visitors To [Beck’s] Web site Have Called For Her Death.” On January 21, New York Times reporter Brian Stelter wrote:

On his daily radio and television shows, Glenn Beck has elevated once-obscure conservative thinkers onto best-seller lists. Recently, he has elevated a 78-year-old liberal academic to celebrity of a different sort, in a way that some say is endangering her life.

Frances Fox Piven, a City University of New York professor, has been a primary character in Mr. Beck’s warnings about a progressive take-down of America. Ms. Piven, Mr. Beck says, is responsible for a plan to “intentionally collapse our economic system.”

Her name has become a kind of shorthand for “enemy” on Mr. Beck’s Fox News Channel program, which is watched by more than 2 million people, and on one of his Web sites, The Blaze. This week, Mr. Beck suggested on television that she was an enemy of the Constitution.

Never mind that Ms. Piven’s radical plan to help poor people was published 45 years ago, when Mr. Beck was a toddler. Anonymous visitors to his Web site have called for her death, and some, she said, have contacted her directly via e-mail.

In response, a liberal nonprofit group, the Center for Constitutional Rights, wrote to the chairman of Fox News, Roger Ailes, on Thursday to ask him to put a stop to Mr. Beck’s “false accusations” about Ms. Piven.

“Mr. Beck is putting Professor Piven in actual physical danger of a violent response,” the group wrote.

Fox News disagrees. Joel Cheatwood, a senior vice president, said Friday that Mr. Beck would not be ordered to stop talking about Ms. Piven on television. He said Mr. Beck had quoted her accurately and had never threatened her.

“‘The Glenn Beck Program,’ probably above and beyond any on television, has denounced violence repeatedly,” Mr. Cheatwood said.

He said he had no knowledge of the threats against Ms. Piven, and noted that The Blaze was operated independently of Fox News. [The New York Times, 4/9/09]

Beck Turns To Violent Rhetoric In Discussing Flu Vaccine: “Meet Mr. Smith And Mr. Wesson.” On his radio show, Beck developed a hypothetical scenario in which the government would consider taking his children because he refused to have them receive a mandatory flu vaccine. Beck explained to the audience that his response to the government showing up at his house to take his kids would be, “Meet Mr. Smith and Mr. Wesson,” a reference to the gun manufacturer. [Premiere Radio Networks, The Glenn Beck Program, 5/14/10]

Beck: “To The Day I Die, I Am Going To Be A Progressive Hunter.” Telling his listeners that they “are going to learn so much on Friday,” Beck compared himself to “Israeli Nazi hunters” and commented: “I’m telling you, I’m going to find these big progressives and, to the day I die, I’m going to be a progressive hunter.” He added:

BECK: I’m going to find these people that have done this to our — you know, to our country, and expose them. I don’t care where — I don’t care if they’re in nursing homes. I’m going to expose what they have done and make sure that the people understand, because our Constitution, our republic — if it survives — it will only survive because the people are waking up and through the grace of God, because we are that close to losing our republic. [Premiere Radio Networks, The Glenn Beck Program, 1/20/10]

Ranting That Gov’t Under Nixon “Wasn’t As Corrupt As It Is Now,” Beck Suggests Obama Administration Might Kill “10 Percent” Of Population. On his June 10, 2010, show, Beck warned that “anarchists, Marxists, communists, revolutionaries, Maoists” have to “eliminate 10 percent of the U.S. population” in order to “gain control.” They couldn’t achieve such a goal when Richard Nixon was president, Beck stated, because “the family was together” and the government under Nixon “wasn’t as corrupt as it is now.” Beck added: “Now they can. Now they can.” Beck later played a clip of an FBI agent who infiltrated the Weather Underground and warned about extremists who want to kill people. Beck responded to the clip by stating: “These are the same people that are everywhere in our government and our education system. Please, please. Learn from history. Please.” [Fox News, Glenn Beck, 8/6/09]

Beck: “Grab A Torch.” Asserting that politicians are addicted to spending, Beck stated: “When do we ever run those who are bankrupting our country and literally stealing our children’s future out of town? Grab a torch.” [Fox News, Glenn Beck, 1/6/10]

Beck Suggests That Progressives Support “Armed Insurrection.” After President Obama signed health care reform legislation into law, Beck suggested that progressives support “armed insurrection” and asked, “Why would the president take up immigration right away, after he’s just punched you in the face with health care?” [Fox News, Glenn Beck, 3/23/10]

Beck Suggests Pelosi and Obama Support “Pick[ing] Up A Gun” To Advance “Revolution.” Beck also said that “violence is the wrong way to go,” but asked his viewers: “You’d pick up a gun? Have you ever thought of that?” He then pointed to several pictures, including images of Obama and Pelosi, and stated: “These people have. Because possibly, maybe the question should be asked, maybe they’re tired of evolution, and maybe they are waiting for revolution.” Beck also said: “Haven’t we just been spanked? Hasn’t most of the country — doesn’t most of the country feel like they’ve been spanked over health care? You bet. I do, you do. A lot of people do.” [Fox News, Glenn Beck, 3/23/10]

Beck Suggests Obama Administration May Kill Him. Beck said: “For those of you in the administration, who are coming after me … remember, you’ve broken three [of the 10 Commandments], let’s not make it four; thou shalt not kill.” [Fox News, Glenn Beck, 3/23/10]

Beck: “The Revolution Of 1776 Was A Picnic Compared To What The Revolutionaries Of Today Would Like To Do. … Usually, Millions Of People Die.” While discussing “radicals” in the country, Beck told his audience: “Here’s what you’ll learn. The revolution of 1776 was a picnic compared to what the revolutionaries of today would like to do. It’s not a lot of fun. Usually, millions of people die.” [Fox News, Glenn Beck, 7/12/10]

Beck: “This Game Is For Keeps”; “[Y]ou Can Shoot Me In The Head … But There Will Be 10 Others That Line Up.” Asking his audience to “pray for protection,” Beck claimed that “the most powerful people on the planet on the left” were “not going to go away easy” because “[t]his game is for keeps. This is who controls the United States of America and its destiny.” He asked his listeners to “please keep me in your prayers, keep my staff in your prayers, for safety, for wisdom,” adding, “Just pray for protection, please.”

Later in the same program, Beck said:

BECK: You can try to put the lid on this group of people, but you will never silence us. You will never — you can shoot me in the head, you can shoot the next guy in the head, but there will be 10 others that line up. And it may not happen today, it may not happen next week, but freedom will be restored in this land. Period. And no matter what you want to call it, it is a totalitarian state that you’re headed towards. [Premiere Radio Networks, The Glenn Beck Program, 9/8/09 and 9/8/09]

Beck: “[Y]ou Will Have To Shoot Me In The Forehead Before You Take Away My Gun” And “Before I Acquiesce And Be Silent.” Beck has warned “ACORN, GE, Obama, SEIU” that “you are awakening a sleeping giant, and I have nothing to do with it,” and that “America is waking up. You know the American Revolution took place with 12 percent of the population? Twelve. Are you telling me there is not 30 percent of this population that you will have to shoot me in the forehead before I let somebody into my house to tell me how to raise my children; you will have to shoot me in the forehead before you take away my gun; you will have to shoot me in the forehead before I acquiesce and be silent.” Beck further stated:

BECK: They cannot move on these things, because they are building a machine that will crush the entrepreneurial spirit and the freedom that our Founding Fathers designed. This machine, whatever it is they are building, will crush it. Do not let them build another piece.

So while I turn away, I want to make sure that I have at least 10 million eyes watching — watching every single move they are making.

[…]

We know why they’re doing what they’re doing. You need to do what you need to do, and as long as that is peaceful, we will save our country. [Premiere Radio Networks, The Glenn Beck Program, 7/30/09]

Beck Suggests Obama Is “Trying To Destroy The Country” And Is Pushing America Toward Civil War. While discussing the ongoing controversy over Arizona’s immigration law, Beck told his listeners that “we are being pushed” toward civil war and that Obama is “trying to destroy the country.” [Premiere Radio Networks, The Glenn Beck Program, 5/19/10]

Beck: “There Is A Coup Going On. There Is A Stealing Of America.” Beck has claimed that “there is a revolution, and they think they can get away with it quietly,” adding: “At this point, gang, I’m not sure, they may be able to because they are so far ahead of us. They know what they’re dealing against; most of America does not yet. Most of America doesn’t have a clue as to what’s going on. There is a coup going on. There is a stealing of America, and the way it is done, it has been done through the — the guise of an election, but they lied to us the entire time.” He also said, “And they’re gonna say, ‘we did it democratically,’ and they are going to grab power every way they can. And God help us in an emergency.” [Premiere Radio Networks, The Glenn Beck Program, 8/31/09]

Beck: “There Are Those People That Really Want This To Collapse, And They Are Planning On Violence.” Referencing a speech he had given the previous weekend in Alaska, Beck discussed how he told the audience that “you are Fort Knox.” He explained that if the economy collapses, Alaskans must “grab your guns” because “the Russians, the Chinese — everyone is coming to Alaska, because that’s where the money is. Now, that’s not begging for World War III; that’s called giving you the facts. But see, there are those people that really want this to collapse, and they are planning on violence. They’re planning on it — we’ve already shown you. We’ve already seen it with SEIU. We’ve shown it to you over in Europe.” [Premiere Radio Networks, The Glenn Beck Program, 10/7/09]

Beck’s Rhetoric Has Previously Been Linked To Violence And Death Threats

Williams Wanted To “Start A Revolution” By “Killing People Of Importance At The Tides Foundation.” On July 18, 2010, Byron Williams, a convicted felon, engaged in a shootout with police after being pulled over on I-580 in California. Williams was heavily armed, wearing body armor and wielding “a 9mm handgun, a .308-caliber rifle and a shotgun.” After being taken into custody, Williams reportedly told investigators that “his intention was to start a revolution by traveling to San Francisco and killing people of importance at the Tides Foundation and the ACLU.” [San Francisco Chronicle, 7/21/10]

Williams’ Mother: Son “Was Upset” With “The Way Congress Was Railroading Through All These Left-Wing Agenda Items.” The San Francisco Chronicle also reported that Williams’ mother, Janice Williams, described her son as “angry at left-wing politicians” and at “what’s happening to our country.” The Chronicle further reported: “Williams watched the news on television and was upset by ‘the way Congress was railroading through all these left-wing agenda items,’ his mother said.” [San Francisco Chronicle, 7/19/10]

Williams: “The Things” Beck Exposed “Blew My Mind.” During an interview with reporter John Hamilton after his arrest, Williams said: “I would have never started watching Fox News if it wasn’t for the fact that Beck was on there. And it was the things that he did, it was the things he exposed that blew my mind. I said, well, nobody does this.” Williams continued: “You need to go back to June — June of this year, 2010 — and look at all his programs from June. And you’ll see he’s been breaking open some of the most hideous corruption. … A year ago, I was watching him, and it was OK, he was all right, you know? … But now he’s getting it.” [Media Matters, 10/11/10]

Williams Was Driven By Belief In Conspiracy Theories That Have Been Pushed By Beck. Hamilton noted that in one letter to him, Williams “repeatedly cites Beck when discussing the Soros-Obama-Petrobras story and insists I check out Beck’s ‘June’ shows.” Hamilton continued:

In his letter to me, Byron writes: “I have been praying for a media advocate; one, to make people aware of why I’m in here (public opinion could help me), and two, to make people realize that corrupt killers are in power, and want re-election! I was also fearful that this issue would be ‘burried.’ “

Byron writes, “You want to know about Soros and Tides, yes, Glenn Beck is doing very well uncovering his wickedness, check his ‘June’ programs for ‘Petrobraz’, also look into ‘DiscoverTheNetworks.com.’ “

Byron also writes that “very good information regarding ‘Petrobraz’ can be found in Glenn Beck’s ‘June’ shows, where he accurately covered the Obama-Soros-Petrobraz-Chicago (Crime Inc.) connections for several days. It’s all true.”

Byron adds that he “found allusions to the Horizon disaster as a ‘false-flag’ operation in Alex Jones ‘10/11/10]

Williams On Beck: He Denies “Violent Approach” and “Conspiracies” To “Protect Himself. … I Understand What He’s Doing.” In his interview with Hamilton, Williams also said that “Beck is gonna deny everything about violent approach and deny everything about conspiracies, but he’ll give you every reason to believe it. He’s protecting himself, and you can’t blame him for that. So, I understand what he’s doing.” Williams continued:

“And I’d say, well, you know, that’s the thing. It’s that anything you do is going to be considered promoting terror attacks or promoting violence. So now they’ve got Beck labeled as this guy that is trying to incite violence. And what I say is that if the truth incites violence, it means that we’ve been living too long in the lies.

“Because it’s gonna be too many — it’s gonna be more and more people that are, you know — when you become unemployed, desperate, you can no longer pay your bills, when your society has come to a standstill, and cannot grow anymore, you’re becoming socialized, everything, you know — companies are moving overseas, what do you think is gonna happen? You know, for crying out loud. It’s gonna get worse. And more and more people are gonna get desperate.” [Media Matters, 10/11/10]

Beck Linked With Stoking “Fears” That Caused Charles Wilson To Threaten Murray

Wilson Sentenced For Threats Against Sen. Patty Murray. In October 2010, Charles Alan Wilson was sentenced to a year and a day in prison for threatening Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) with “violence” in phone calls to her office. [The Seattle Times, 4/6/10]

Wilson To Murray: “Kill The Fucking Senator! … Now That You’ve Passed Your Health-Care Bill, Let The Violence Begin.” In court documents, federal prosecutors pointed to several voicemail messages Wilson left for Murray that raised “serious concerns,” including:

“Just remember that as you are politicing for your reelection. It only takes one piece of lead. … Kill the fucking Senator! Kill the fucking Senator! I’ll donate the lead. … Now that you’ve passed your health-care bill, let the violence begin. Let the violence begin.”

“By your attempts to overtake this country with socialism, somebody’s gonna get to you one way or another and blow your fucking brains out, and I hope it does happen. If I have the chance, I would do it.”

“Kill the fucking Senator! Hang the fucking Senator! I hope somebody puts a fucking bullet between your fucking eyes. Far left liberal socialist democratic bitch. You mother-fucker. You sold the fucking people of the country out for socialism. I hope somebody fucking erasers your fucking life. Yes, I hope somebody assassinates you, you fucking bitch.”

“We are going to fuck you up. We are going to fuck you up as bad as we can. Yes, the independents. The real people of this country, not you spineless fucking socialists. You better watch your fucking back, baby, because there’s people gonna come after you with fucking both fucking barrels, bitch.” [Media Matters, 10/28/10]

Relative: Wilson’s Threats Occurred Because He “Was Under The Spell That Glenn Beck Cast.” In a September 17 letter, Wilson’s cousin wrote:

What happened later with Charlie is something I think I can understand. He became basically housebound due to illness and his small world became even smaller. His brother got him a computer and he was able to stay connected with family. And he watched television and found Glenn Beck… I found Glenn Beck about the same time Charlie did. I understand how his fears were grown and fostered by Mr. Beck’s persuasive personality. The same thing happened to me but I went in a different direction with what I was seeing. Rather than blame politicians for the current issues, I simply got prepared for what Glenn said was coming. I slowly filled our pantry as Glenn fed fear into me. I did not miss watching his show and could not understand why the rest of the world didn’t get it — Glenn became a pariah to me. But I was finally able to step away and realize the error of my ways. The media lost its grip on me. But it still held very tightly to Charlie.

While his actions were undeniably wrong and his choices were terrible, in part they were the actions of others played out by a very gullible Charlie. He was under the spell that Glenn Beck cast, aided by the turbulent times in our economy. I don’t believe that Charlie even had the ability to actually carry out his threats. [Media Matters, 10/28/10]

Self-Described “Militia Leader” Kenneth Kimbley Reportedly Idolized Beck

Kenneth Kimbley Jr. Pleaded Guilty To Federal Gun Charges. The Spokesman Review of Spokane, Washington, reported in November 2010 that “self-described militia leader” Kenneth B. Kimbley Jr. pleaded guilty to federal gun charges connected to a grenade manufacturing operation at his trailer in Idaho:

A self-described militia leader pleaded guilty this week to federal gun charges connected to a grenade manufacturing operation at his trailer in Spirit Lake, Idaho.

Kenneth B. Kimbley Jr., 58, discussed bombing local bridges with an undercover federal agent and made threatening statements toward President Barack Obama, leading investigators last July to seize 20,000 ammunition rounds and several firearms from Kimbley’s property, where he and other suspected militia members gathered to construct grenades, according to court documents. [The Spokesman Review, 4/8/10]

Giusti Called Pelosi “A Witch” And Said He Didn’t Like Her Pushing Health Care Bill “Down The People’s Throats.” The AP further reported that Giusti “told investigators he had phoned Pelosi about a half-dozen times, called her a witch and said he did not like her ‘pushing the health care bill down the people’s throats,’ the complaint stated.” [Associated Press, 4/8/10]

Giusti’s Mother Blamed Fox News For Her Son’s Actions. During an interview with the local San Francisco ABC affiliate, Giusti’s mother, Eleanor Giusti, stated that Fox News was a factor in her son’s actions. She stated:

ELEANOR GIUSTI: Greg has — frequently gets in with a group of people that have really radical ideas and that are not consistent with myself or the rest of the family and — which gets him into problems. And apparently I would say this must be another one that somehow he’s gotten onto either by — I’d say Fox News or all of those that are really radical, and he — that’s where he comes from. [ABC’s San Francisco affiliate, KGO-TV, 4/7/10]


‘God’s Army’: Louisiana Locals Train To Protect Their Churches With Guns

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 24th, 2011 5:43 am by HL

‘God’s Army’: Louisiana Locals Train To Protect Their Churches With Guns
Some Louisiana residents have recently been attending firearms training sessions so they can carry concealed weapons into churches, in accordance with a law passed over last summer.


Effort To ‘Modernize’ Miranda Looks Dead, But DOJ Wouldn’t Release New ‘Guidance’
Nine months after it was first floated by the Obama administration, a plan to “modernize” Miranda rights doesn’t seem to be going anywhere in the legislative branch. But Attorney General Eric Holder issued a guidance a few months ago that the Justice Department says sets no specific time limit on the so-called public safety exception.


Reg Gabaet – Teabagger Congressman!

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 24th, 2011 5:40 am by HL

Reg Gabaet – Teabagger Congressman!


Scalia to Address Tea Party Caucus

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 24th, 2011 5:39 am by HL

Scalia to Address Tea Party Caucus
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia is scheduled to speak today in a closed-door meeting with the Tea Party Caucus — an informal group of conservative lawmakers, CNN reports.

“The conservative justice is a popular speaker and keeps a busy off-the-bench schedule, talking in various forums around the world. Monday’s session with the 74-year-old Scalia is being billed as the first in a series of twice-monthly ‘conservative constitutional seminars,’ although all members of Congress are invited, according to organizers.”

The Talker vs. The Writer
As President Obama puts the finishing touches on his State of the Union address, the New York Times notes Obama is very different from the previous Democratic president, Bill Clinton — Mr. Clinton is a talker; Mr. Obama is a writer.”

As the author of two books, Obama “likes putting his thoughts on paper, they said. The president has spent time practicing his delivery of the speech as it has gotten closer, but the development process was done largely in writing. By contrast, senior aides to former President Bill Clinton said his major speeches were more often developed verbally, with aides grabbing sentences and paragraphs as he talked out loud.”


Is Michele Bachmann Moving in to Take Sarah Palin’s Place?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 24th, 2011 5:38 am by HL

Is Michele Bachmann Moving in to Take Sarah Palin’s Place?
Michele Bachmann could be a dramatically and powerful force on the Republican right — ultimately, perhaps, even more powerful than Sarah Palin.


More Ideas For A Constructive Foreign Policy Debate

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 24th, 2011 5:37 am by HL

More Ideas For A Constructive Foreign Policy Debate
I spent last weekend at Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School for a conference the Stanley Foundation co-sponsored with three of our favorite colleagues. The main subject was the prospect and challenge of international cooperation amidst pervasive change, but there were a…


Bombing Iran: Goldberg Responds
In response to my recent post, Jeffrey Goldberg sent me the following email, which I reproduce in full:…



McCain On Spending Cuts: Cancer Research ?Is One Of The Last Things That I Would Go After?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 24th, 2011 5:36 am by HL

McCain On Spending Cuts: Cancer Research ?Is One Of The Last Things That I Would Go After?

Today, on CBS’s Face the Nation, host Bob Schieffer pressed Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) on the spending cuts being pushed by House Republicans. Noting that both he and McCain are cancer survivors, Schieffer asked McCain if he was open to slashing cancer research funds — a proposal which is apparently “on the table” according to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA):

SCHIEFFER: Let’s get back to spending cuts. You’ve never been shy about spending cuts especially when it comes to earmarks and those pet projects that members have. But the House Republicans are talking about draconian cuts, that according to some liberal groups would mean a 40 percent cut this year in such things as the National Institutes of Health and the FBI and federal prosecutors.

Eric Cantor said this morning on Meet the Press that even cancer research is on the table. Now you and I are cancer survivors. Do you think that’s something where we can cut back?

MCCAIN: I think there may be efficiencies there. And frankly I — cancer research I think is one of the last things that I would go after. But we’ve got to take on some of the sacred cows, Bob.

Watch it:

However, cancer research is not on the bottom the GOP’s list of things to cut. The proposal introduced by the Republican Study Committee (RSC) last week includes a provision which would reduce non-defense discretionary spending to 2006 levels until 2021. Pat Garofalo of ThinkProgress points out that such a cut would cost the National Institutes of Health (NIH) — which includes the National Cancer Institute (NCI) — $5 billion. Back in November, when Cantor indicated that the House would roll back funding to agencies to fiscal 2008 levels, the NIH called the reduction “very devastating.” NIH-funded research has already led to the development of drugs that include the cancer therapies Avastin, sold by Roche Holding AG, and Novartis AG’s Gleevec.

Money has been tight at the Cancer Institute for years. “We are pulling the rug out from the world’s best infrastructure for cancer research and for all biomedical research. It doesn’t make any sense to me,” said one cancer researcher back when the Bush administration slashed NIH funds.

In late 2010, President Obama asked Congress for $32 billion for the National Institutes of Health. His request for the National Cancer Institute is reportedly up 10 percent from where it was in 2008.

Sen. Mike Lee Says That Dialing Down Violent Political Rhetoric Means ?The Shooter Wins?

In the wake of the Tucson tragedy, politicians from both sides of the aisle have called for a more civil discourse in our political debate. On CBS’s Face the Nation this morning, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) said, “There is a lack of respect in our dialogue. … We shouldn’t mistake passion for advocacy. In other words, passion is necessary in this debate that we’re having, but we’ve got to make sure it doesn’t spill over into personal attacks and impugning people’s character or patriotism.”

On ABC’s This Week, new Tea Party-backed Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) struck a different tone. He argued that restraining violent rhetoric — such as invoking “job-killing” during the health care repeal effort — would be unwise because it means “the shooter wins”:

The shooter wins if we, who’ve been elected, change what we do just because of what he did.

Watch it:

Lee’s argument is disingenuous because it suggests that lawmakers shouldn’t reflect on whether the shooting incident highlights any real need for political change. In fact, lawmakers should consider whether to curtail the ability of gun owners to purchase high-capacity magazine clips.

The Washington Post reported this weekend that the expiration of the ban on high-capacity magazine clips since 2004 has led to a proliferation of those weapons being seized by police in the course of investigations. “Last year in Virginia, guns with high-capacity magazines amounted to 22 percent of the weapons recovered and reported by police. In 2004, when the ban expired, the rate had reached a low of 10 percent. In each year since then, the rate has gone up.”

Who “wins” when there’s more weapons of mass casualty on the streets?