IndianaBy John Ruberry

Twenty years ago if you were unhappy with a business, let’s say a check out clerk was rude to you or you were served a rotten meal, you had some effective ways of getting back. Of course these methods still exist. You can never patronize that business again and tell your friends not to do so as well.

Last week a South Bend, Indiana television reporter ventured outside of her city and traveled to tiny Walkerton, a place she probably never heard of before, where she interviewed one of the owners of Memories Pizza, a family business, who told the reporter that because of their Christian beliefs they would not cater a gay wedding–if they were was asked. The reporter found the “gotcha” story in the sticks that she was seeking in regards to Indiana’s new Religious Restoration Freedom Act.

Then the militant left went on the attack. The owners went into hiding after receiving a death threat.

And then the online attacks poured in Actually they’re still coming. Memories’ Yelp page has been inundated with “reviews” from people who lives almost everywhere but northern Indiana. On the other hand, a high school coach from nearby Goshen took to Twitter to suggest that Memories be burned down. She has since been suspended.  As I mentioned in my post here last week, Yelp’s CEO condemned Indiana’s RFRA, although just last month his firm opened an office in Illinois–which has a similar law.

Years ago I was at a concert where Elvis Costello answered a heckler who was shouting that he should play “Clubland,” by replying with something blues singer Little Willie John once said. “I remember the good old days,” Costello quipped, “they’re gone now. ”

True, very true.

But there is some good news. Supporters of Memories Pizza and religious freedom started a GoFundMe.com drive for the owners of the restaurant–and it has received $800,000.

The internet is a two-edged sword.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

As you might have noticed there has been a decided lack of courage among some in the GOP since the Democrats launched their RFRA squirrel.

It’s true that Ted Cruz came out and remained strong in support of religious liberty

While more moderate Republican presidential hopeful Jeb Bush appeared to soften his stance, GOP Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas stood firm Wednesday night and denounced Democrats who he said “want to persecute anyone that has a good faith religious belief that marriage is a holy sacrament between the union of one man and one woman and ordained as a covenant by God.”

He also took aim at Fortune 500 companies during a stop in Iowa, saying they are “running shamelessly to endorse the radical gay marriage agenda over religious liberty.”

But as far as Pols go he’s been the exception as both Mike Pence and Asa Hutchinson rushed to appease the left in some way rather than being willing to go after them head on (like the fellow at Heritage who so vexed Ed Schultz that he cut off his mike)

The reactions are not a surprise, large corporations have always been more loyal to profit than principle and the prospect of the left kicking up a fuss is expensive and pols, afraid being attacked constantly have rushed to mollify media and activists (forgetting they short of copulation they can not be mollified).

However if there is one thing that will stiffen the spine of a poll it’s the prospect that it will pay off, and that brings us to Memories Pizza in Indiana which after being deluged by death threats after a “gotcha” story from the local media ws forced to close.

In response someone started a GoFundme page and after 24 hours here is the result

gofundme

Now $422K raised in 24 hours is pretty impressive but the number that really catches the eye is the 14,335 people who gave it.  That works out to just under $30 a person.

Picture what that kind of donor base means. If these people are willing to kick in to protect this pizza place how much more likely are they to kick in if you as a pol are making the fight publicly that they are supporting privately.

If you could manage to convince just a third of these people to kick in at that $30 rate to your campaign that adds up to $150,000.

And even better because they are kicking in only $30 that means you can go back to them 10, 20 even 50 times or more before they max out under the law.

That’s a lot of potential ad buys, a lot of radio spots, a ton of lawn signs or a bus fully equipped.

The National GOP may not care much for the conservative wing of the party or the religious people it consists of but for the shot at a share of those fundraising number, they’ll do their best to fake it.

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Primary Season is coming and with a 1/4 of the year gone were less that 5% toward our annual goal.

If 1000 of our readers kicked in $20 we’d be all set for a full year and I could retire DaTipJar till January of 2016.

Of course if one person wants to kick in that $20K we’ll take that too.  Help me make the good fight every single day.

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The great thing about conventional wisdom is it’s always right, until it isn’t:

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz has jumped to third place in the prospective Republican presidential field since making his bid official last week, according to a new poll.

The survey, released Wednesday by Democratic firm Public Policy Polling, found Cruz surging from 5% support last month to 16% support from Republican primary voters this month.

 

As a general rule early announcers don’t get much from it, so why has Ted Cruz progressed so much in a week, well here are a few clues:

1. Cruz has been bold:

Cruz made it a point to make his announcement at liberty university, KNOWING that the left / media would go absolutely nuts over it and dismiss him because of it. The attacks of the left were sure to make people of the right pleased.

2. Cruz has been relentless

At a time when the conventional wisdom and the media wisdom was proclaiming that the signing of the Tom Cotton open letter was an at of treason Cruz not only defended it but had this to say to Mika Brzezinski on Morning Joe:

This interview, for the most part, was hostile and yet Ted Cruz did fabulously. Much of the interview centered on the Iranian letter, as Mika continued to press Cruz on the motivations behind the letter, even after he had already explained to her their motivations. Cruz never backed down one iota, even saying at the end that he has no regrets about signing the letter, like John McCain does as Mika points out, and that he would sign the same letter to Iran again in large print so the Ayatollahs wouldn’t need their glasses to read his signature.

and proved to be ahead of the public on the issue

3. Ted Cruz has been fearless.

While Mike Pence and Asa Hutchinson were quick to backtrack under media and leftist pressure not only was Ted Cruz one of the first to defend Indiana’s law. On Wednesday he doubled down:

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz says concern about religious freedom, awakened in the debate over a new Indiana law, could unite conservative Republicans and rally some Democrats to the GOP in 2016.

And vowed to campaign on it:

Cruz told an audience Wednesday he could carry the banner for that cause in his GOP presidential campaign.

“We need to stand up as courageous conservatives,” he told a packed auditorium in the heart of northwest Iowa’s conservative northwest in his first visit to the state since declaring his candidacy last week. “Religious liberty is not some fringe view.”

Bottom line, leaders lead. Ted Cruz is leading from the front and in the face of unrelenting pressure from media and leftist activists and Republicans voters are taking notice.

Closing thought:  All of these things  Cruz is doing are exactly the opposite of what the MSM and the GOP establishment says a Republican has to do to win.

Perhaps unlike some in the GOP Senator Cruz knows how to play the game.

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Can’t anyone play this game?

Casey Stengel

As I continue to watch how the Indiana law business is playing out I can’t believe that the right, with the exception of Ted Cruz,  hasn’t gone on offense.

Take a look at this pitcure

pence nuns

Update: Half of this post disappeared but if the GOP had brains they would present this picture and ask Democrat pols if they believe the nuns in this picture are a bunch of bigots in fact show them along with some of the angrier protesters as a contrast.

Then make some radio buys on Spanish, Black and Islamic radio stations and point to dem pols as wanting to force them to enable and service gay marriages

That will play SO well with these groups in the dem base.

That’s what a smart party would do in a second. Then again this is the GOP

There was a lot of fuss when Indiana became the 20th state to pass a Religious Freedom act this week indicating just how much the Democrat left has rejected any prayer of attracting believing Christians.

Democrats & media have been falling over themselves to denounce Indiana and the media & left made a big fuss about this announcement

The continuing blowback over Indiana’s new “religious freedom” law hit home Saturday, with Indianapolis-based Angie’s List announcing it is canceling a $40 million headquarters expansion.

The decision is a direct result of passage of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, co-founder and chief executive officer Bill Oesterle said Saturday.

Angie’s list produced some celebration from the left and some cancellations from believing christians but unfortunately for Angie’s list it also produced something it apparently can’t stand scrutiny:

roughly 70% of its money comes from advertising, which some people see as a conflict of interest. I mean are you going to give a low rating to an advertiser?

A federal lawsuit filed in Philadelphia this month may answer that question.

But I am wondering how the company’s business is doing. Let us go to the numbers.

2012 revenues: $155,799,000. Losses: $51,033,000.
2013 revenues: $245,642,000. Losses: $32,989,000.
2014 revenues: $315,011,000. Losses: $12,532,000.

Now the losses are shrinking and the revenues doubled. Everyone gets sued in business.

But its stock price dropped from $17.94 a share on January 31, 2014, to $6.34 on Friday.

In other words, Angie’s list is already on thin ice.

It’s a business that’s been losing millions for years, whose stock price has been dropped 60 percent in the last year, is facing a huge lawsuit and has now managed to upset a large section of the population with a long memory to impress media elites.

It’s not the ally the Boycott Indiana wants but it’s even worse if you consider this:

What happens if something goes wrong?

Angie’s list was already in trouble, if it’s forced to sell, or has layoffs, or seeks bankruptcy protection there will be plenty of people willing to point to the power of the Christian consumer as the cause.

Any of those things will give any business thinking of allying themselves with the radical anti-christian left media pause.

And if they go under, all bets are off.

Angie’s list is a time bomb waiting to blow up in the faces of Boycott Indiana, in fact some have already figured this out and will do their best to save the day for them.

When the ship sinks we’ll be happy to note their failure to patch it as well.

On twitter there is a big move to start a “boycott Indiana” movement for its decision to be the 20th state to pass a Religious Freedom Law to protect Christians from persecution for refusing to support Gay Marriage.

By an odd coincidence the same media types who have been attacking the Gov of Indiana have been cheering the opening of the (Ted)  Kennedy Center

Instead, Vice President Joe Biden will preside over a full-size replica Senate chamber at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate in Boston, with current and former senators at their desks, high school students on the floor and Kennedy family members in the gallery.

The institute opens Monday with a dedication speech by President Obama.and a who’s who of Massachusetts politicians, United States senators and Kennedy kin.

What’s odd about this is it was Ted Kennedy who gave this speech:

The Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which Senator Hatch and I, and 23 other Senators have introduced, would restore the compelling interest test for evaluating free exercise claims. It would do so by establishing a statutory right that adopts the stand­ards previously, used by the Supreme Court. In essence, the act codifies the requirement for the Government to demonstrate that any law burdening the free exercise of religion is essential to fur­thering a compelling governmental interest and is the least restric­tive means of achieving that interest.

It was this law championed by Kennedy that is the basis for the laws in the various states that the left is calling “bigotry” and “hate”

Yet I haven’t heard a single one of the people who spent the weekend comparing supporters of this law to KKK members or Jim Crow fans calling for a boycott of the Kennedy event today or urging the President and Vice President to give it a miss.

I’m shocked at the prospect that the outrage of the left might only be based on political advantage.

Aren’t you?

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IndianaBy John Ruberry

When Indiana governor Mike Pence signed into law a Religious Freedom Restoration Act on Thursday, the Hoosier State became the 20th state to enact such a law.

More from the Weekly Standard:

The first RFRA was a 1993 federal law that was signed into law by Democratic president Bill Clinton. It unanimously passed the House of Representatives, where it was sponsored by then-congressman Chuck Schumer, and sailed through the Senate on a 97-3 vote.

The law reestablished a balancing test for courts to apply in religious liberty cases (a standard had been used by the Supreme Court for decades). RFRA allows a person’s free exercise of religion to be “substantially burdened” by a law only if the law furthers a “compelling governmental interest” in the “least restrictive means of furthering that compelling governmental interest.”

So the law doesn’t say that a person making a religious claim will always win. In the years since RFRA has been on the books, sometimes the courts have ruled in favor of religious exemptions, but many other times they haven’t.

This law protects a bakery owned by devout Christians from, let’s say, not baking a wedding cake for a gay union because it violates their religious belief that marriage should be reserved only for one man and one woman, but this law does not permit to exclude gays as customers in all cases. What that business receives is protection from a discrimination lawsuit.

White River, Indianapolis
White River, Indianapolis

As for that gay couple, they can always find another bakery–that won’t be very hard to do–and the newlyweds can write a nasty Yelp review about the first one while on their honeymoon. Interestingly Yelp is one of those businesses considering a boycott of Indiana because of the its new Religious Freedom Restoration Act.  But just three weeks ago with great fanfare, Yelp opened an office in Chicago. Illinois, yep, you guessed right, has an RFRA law on the books.

In a statement released on Friday, Yelp’s CEO Jeremy Stoppleman said:

[It] is unconscionable to imagine that Yelp would create, maintain, or expand a significant business presence in any state that encouraged discrimination by businesses against our employees, or consumers at large.

I guess Stoppelman needs to write a snarky review about himself.

As for Gov. Pence, he’s not helping his case. This morning on ABC’s This Week, Pence was asked six times if the new law will allow businesses to completely refuse services to gays. He couldn’t answer.

No matter: This Hoosier hysteria is misplaced.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

The Tea Party vs Occupy in two stories:

Indiana:
Richard Mourdock defeats DESTROYS Dick Lugar in the Indiana Primary:

Tea Party favorite Richard Mourdock has crushed incumbent Senator Dick Lugar for the Republican nomination in Indiana. Just a month ago, Lugar was considered the favorite in this race. A Howey/DePauw poll showed Lugar up by 7 points, 42 to 35. It appears that undecided voters broke overwhelmingly for Mourdock.

I think 36 years in the senate and the 80 years old had something to do with the results but this was a seat that the tea party targeted and they not only won, they absolutely CRUSHED Lugar.

There is a lot of speculation that the left will have a better chance of winning that senate seat, that is a relative term. Indiana is a very Republican state and that Senate Seat isn’t going anywhere.

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LA: California is the bluest of blue states, and LA hasn’t had a GOP mayor in forever so what did we see on Mayday?

Actual Communists

Photo via Ringo's Pictures

Brown Shirts IN Brown Shirts

Photo via Ringo's Pictures

And cheap shots

and assaults on police officers

And this is how it’s done.

The perpetrators, of whom this is presumably one, got away with it. The video reveals exactly how Occupy’s strategy works: They blindside the police with an unprovoked assault, then the attackers instantly scatter, while other Occupiers with cameras are waiting immediately behind to record the police’s hoped-for overreaction. And they think that this is so very clever that no one’s yet caught on to their tricks.

And who’s marching with them the Democrats best friends the SEIU.

Photo via Ringo's Pictures

All photos are via Ringo’s Pictures who really deserves a tip jar hit for yeoman’s work on this.

OK you got once side cold cocking cops and the other side beating sitting senators at the polls.

Tell me which movement has a future again?

this is it:

Just a couple of quick comments and that’s really all I’ll make. First of all, just to affirm, the activities of today are perfectly legitimate part of the process. Even the smallest minority – and that’s what we’ve heard from the last couple days – has every right to express the strength of its views and I salute those who do.

Nothing like a republicans who covers for fleeing democrats against his own party, it always makes the heart of the no labels heart beat faster.

Little Miss Attila? Not so much.