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Virtue signaling aside, does Chicago have a right to DOJ funding?

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Yeah, if everyone could stop getting outraged and focus on how the law actually works, that’d be great.

Attorney General Sessions announced on July 25 that federal funding under the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (Byrne JAG) has been officially barred from cities refusing to comply with federal immigration law. Rahm Emanuel, Chicago mayor and former Obama Chief of Staff, responded on Sunday by threatening a lawsuit against the Department of Justice, which was filed on Monday. For context, a Ninth Circuit judge illegally struck down President Trump’s executive order in January which more broadly prohibited funds to sanctuary cities (like the policy or not, that’s not how the judiciary works. Somebody actually has to file a case).

The DOJ swiftly replied to Emanuel’s pushback: “In 2016, more Chicagoans were murdered than in New York City and Los Angeles combined. So it’s especially tragic that the mayor is less concerned with that staggering figure than he is spending time and taxpayer money protecting criminal aliens and putting Chicago’s law enforcement at greater risk,” said department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores.

Predictably, this story is being touted Left and Right with the utmost virtue signaling, so much so that no news outlet seems to have even considered which side has the best legal footing. It can be hard to keep our knee-jerk grandstanding to ourselves, so let’s put all that to rest before we move on to the more substantive material:

This article will not address crime rates among illegal immigrants, the Chicago prison system already teeming with complications and which would be decluttered with the deportation of illegals, nor the dubious research on whether sanctuary cities experience any significant change in crime rate.

But that goes both ways. I would also appreciate if the other side would calm down about accusations that Sessions has somehow violated the Constitution and Rahm’s “fundamental rights,” that this measure betrays the moral values of the city of Chicago, that it’s akin to blackmail, or that the withholding of a measly 0.03% of the city budget will “make the people of Chicago less safe” and “[undermine Chicago’s] actual safety agenda” in any serious way. It’s not about kindness, the American Dream, or being a “welcoming city.” It’s about the law.

Lastly, I won’t dive into a discussion about the virtue or even legality of sanctuary cities — federal law is supreme and cities must follow it as it pertains to them, whether they like it or not. But that’s not the item in question.

To address this story adequately, we need to consider the core issue: does the Department of Justice have the authority to rescind its contract with the city of Chicago? Consenting parties have a constitutional right to enter into a contract, so if Sessions has violated his end, then Emanuel might have a case.

When accepted for this grant program, states (and subsequently cities) enter into a contract with the DOJ. States apply to the Byrne JAG Program and are awarded funding based on a formula calculated by the Bureau of Justice Statistics involving population and violent crime stats. As this is a federal grant, the money can only be used for its stated purpose in a few specified areas. If a city or state refuses to comply with those terms, then no deal. They don’t lose any money; they just don’t qualify for additional funding because they won’t use it for its intended purpose.

This touches on a critical point: the DOJ isn’t holding outside money hostage. They’re not refusing funding for education, infrastructure, or anything unrelated so as to ostensibly treat police officers like “political pawns in a debate,” as Emanuel has alleged. This is money exclusively set aside for law enforcement, and the DOJ is refusing it based on concerns regarding law enforcement.

Next we have to ask whether Chicago intended to uphold their federal contract anyway by allotting the funds to an approved category. Chicago had reportedly planned on using its promised $3.2 million to buy police vehicles, which arguably qualifies under Byrne JAG specifications as “equipment,” so that appears to check out.

As far as I can tell, Chicago was in total compliance with the stated restrictions of the grant until the attorney general’s announcement, which makes it the only part that truly matters.

On July 25, Sessions declared in part, “From now on, the Department will only provide Byrne JAG grants to cities and states that comply with federal law, allow federal immigration access to detention facilities, and provide 48 hours notice before they release an illegal alien wanted by federal authorities. This is consistent with long-established cooperative principles among law enforcement agencies.” He cited “tak[ing] down MS-13 and other violent transnational gangs” as impetus for the policy change, and the department later issued further details concerning the new additions.

Under these restrictions, Chicago most certainly does not qualify for the Byrne JAG. So where does Sessions stand? It all depends on whether the attorney general has the authority to transparently adjust the terms of a financial contract while such is already in place.

To my knowledge, yes. He didn’t do it in secret and bust anyone for a law they didn’t know about, and, more importantly, it’s not legislation; it’s DOJ policy, and Sessions is the head of the DOJ. The contract comes from the DOJ, so only the DOJ can alter it, and there’s no reason they can’t alter it (it would be silly to claim that once a policy is established it has to stay that way forever).

I know of no legal argument against Sessions’s ability to amend department policy, and I haven’t seen any publication or politician even attempt to present one. We’ll just have to see if virtue signaling (from both sides) outweighs the legal question.

Richie Angel is a Co-Editor in Chief of The New Guards. Follow him and The New Guards on Twitter, check out The New Guards on Facebook.

Richie Angel is a Co-Editor in Chief of The New Guards, Co-Host of The New Guards Podcast, lifelong fan of the Anaheim Ducks, and proud Hufflepuff. He graduated Magna Cum Laude in English from Brigham Young University in 2017. One day later, his wife gave birth to a beautiful daughter. Richie is a constitutional conservative and doesn't see any compassion in violating other people's rights.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. R angel

    August 8, 2017 at 8:11 am

    Totally agree

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Politics

Hey, Jeff Flake! The GOP is already toast!

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Hey Jeff Flake The GOP is already toast

At a tax-reform event held in Arizona over the weekend, soon-to-be ex-Senator Jeff Flake was caught on a hot mic whining about the imminent death of the GOP. Speaking to his good friend, Mesa Mayor John Giles, Flake said “If we become the party of Roy Moore and Donald Trump, we are toast.”

Unfortunately for Flake, his analysis is a day late and a dollar short. The GOP has pretty much been toast ever since Ronald Reagan’s last day in office. That’s when RINOs took over the party and turned it over to big-government Republicans like George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush, Mitch McConnell, and John Boehner.

Ever since Ronnie rode off into the California sunset, conservative values have been relegated to the dustbin of broken campaign promises only to be conveniently brought out every election season to steal money and votes.

Flake’s statement is wrong for a few more reasons: Roy Moore is a threat to people like Flake because he is running against the establishment, and the GOP has already become the party of Donald Trump.

For example, before he decided to pass on re-election next year, polls showed Flake was already likely to lose in the primary to Kelli Ward, who’s running as a Trumplican. Trumplicanism has replaced conservatism as the new identity of the Republican Party as it embraces all things Trump under the mistaken belief that his populist brand of politics is what defines conservatism today.

This sad reality is a direct result of RINOs like Jeff Flake.

Ironically, Flake confirmed the importance of the conservative values he long abandoned with the release of his book earlier this year, “Conscience of a Conservative,” a title essentially plagiarized from a book written by the man credited with reigniting the conservative movement back in the 1960’s, Barry Goldwater.

Because it’s election season, Flake hoped his book could be a sort of get-out-of-RINO-jail-free card as he attempted to at least give the appearance that he was the conservative we all know he isn’t. But hey, if you’re going to write about something you know absolutely nothing about, steal the words of someone who did, right?

Jeff Flake blames everyone but himself and his fellow RINOs for the sorry state of the GOP, but these lying liars are fully responsible for the rise of Donald Trump and the Trumplican Party.

The good news is that the GOP is already toast. Let’s replace it with a true conservative party.

Originally posted on The Strident Conservative.

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News

Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe has agreed to resign. Update: He didn’t.

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Zimbabwes Robert Mugabe has agreed to resign source

Update

Once again, Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has defied calls for his resignation, allowing a deadline set by his party to pass without a word.

Zimbabwe crisis: Deadline passes for Mugabe to quit as party leader

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-42048412Members of Zimbabwe’s ruling Zanu-PF party are preparing to meet to discuss the possible impeachment of President Robert Mugabe, after a deadline for his resignation came and went on Monday.

The deadline was set by Mr Mugabe’s own party, Zanu-PF.

The embattled leader surprised Zimbabweans on Sunday, declaring on TV that he planned to remain as president.

Original Story

Reports came in yesterday that Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe would be stepping down instead of going through impeachment, but in a speech on state-run television he did not step down. Now, a new report is coming in that he has agreed to step down, having drafted a resignation letter.

As has been the case for nearly four decades with the tyrannical strongman, reports about him are subject to change. ZANU-PF, the party that he led until yesterday afternoon when they removed him, have given him until noon today (5am EST) to resign or they will request impeachment. The parliament does not meet on Mondays, so if he doesn’t step down he likely won’t be tried until the next day.

Based upon information from a CNN source, the leader has reached an agreement that would give him full immunity and allow him to keep his possessions.

Further Reading

Source: Zimbabwe’s Mugabe agrees to terms of resignation

http://www.cnn.com/2017/11/20/africa/zimbabwe-mugabe/index.htmlAn official source with direct knowledge of negotiations says that Zimbabwe leader Robert Mugabe has agreed to the terms of his resignation and a letter has been drafted.

The source said generals had given into many of Mugabe’s demands including full immunity for himself and his wife Grace, and also that he would keep his private properties.

Zimbabwe’s Mugabe has until noon to stand down or face impeachment | Reuters

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-zimbabwe-politics/zimbabwes-mugabe-has-until-noon-to-stand-down-or-face-impeachment-idUSKBN1DK0H1?il=0Zimbabwe’s liberation war veterans, who have been among the most vocal in calling for Mugabe’s resignation, will hold a media briefing at 9.30 a.m.

Moments after Mugabe’s address, war veterans leader Chris Mutsvangwa told Reuters they would lead public protests in the streets of Harare, cranking up the pressure on Zimbabwe’s ruler of the last 37 years.

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Guns and Crime

Charles Manson is dead

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Charles Manson is dead

The satanic ringleader behind several gruesome murders in California in 1969, Charles Manson, has died of natural causes Sunday, one week after his birthday. He was 83.

Over a five-week period in the summer of 1969, Manson’s minions carried out nine murders attached to his orders. Even after his incarceration, as many as 35 murders were committed by members of his cult. Though Manson did not participate directly in the murders, his leadership of the cult that killed on his orders earned him the death penalty. His sentence was commuted to nine life sentences when California annulled death sentences issued before 1972. He was sentenced in 1971 and spent 46 years in jail, costing tax-payers millions of dollars.

Further Reading

Charles Manson, mastermind of 1969 murders, dies at 83

http://beta.latimes.com/local/obituaries/la-me-charles-manson-20171119-story.htmlManson did not commit the murders himself; instead he persuaded his group of followers to carry out the killings. The crimes received frenzied news coverage, because so many lurid and sensational elements coalesced at the time — Hollywood celebrity, cult behavior, group sex, drugs and savage murders that concluded with the killers scrawling words with their victims’ blood.

Los Angeles residents were terrified by the crimes. Before the killers were apprehended, gun sales and guard dog purchases skyrocketed and locksmiths had weeks-long waiting lists. Numerous off-duty police officers were hired to guard homes in affluent neighborhoods and security firms tripled in size.

Charles Manson is rotting in hell | New York Post

https://nypost.com/2017/11/20/mass-murderer-charles-manson-dead-at-83/Manson — who infamously wore a swastika tattoo between his eyebrows — had spent more than 45 years in prison after being convicted of directing his “Manson Family” clan of troubled, mostly female, followers to kill seven people in California in the summer of 1969. The dead included actress Sharon Tate, the pregnant wife of director Roman Polanski, who was stabbed 16 times.

“I am crime,” Manson proudly proclaimed during a collect call to The Post from prison in the mid-2000s.

Obituary: Charles Manson

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-36091052When his mother was paroled in 1942 she lived with her eight-year-old son in a series of dilapidated rooms before unsuccessfully applying to a court to have him fostered. Instead he was placed in a Catholic boys’ home from which he ran away after just 10 months.

Manson’s robbery of an off-licence marked the beginning of a series of crimes, including armed robbery, and subsequent incarcerations in a number of institutions.

Manson Family Murders Fast Facts

http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/30/us/manson-family-murders-fast-facts/index.htmlReportedly, during his childhood, Manson’s mother sold him for a pitcher of beer to a woman who wanted to have children. His uncle had to find the woman so that he could get his nephew back.

He later took his stepfather William Manson’s last name.

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