Guest Host Ben Cunningham: ‘As Government Grows Bigger, It Gets Further and Further Away from the People’

Guest Host Ben Cunningham: ‘As Government Grows Bigger, It Gets Further and Further Away from the People’

 

Live from Music Row Friday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – guest hosts Henry and Cunningham discuss big government and the role it plays in individuals lives.

Henry: My name is Grant Henry. I’m a grassroots engagement director with a group called Americans for Prosperity here in Tennessee. And Michael Patrick Leahy has been kind enough to ask me and this comparable Ben Cunningham to come in and do some co-hosting for him this morning.

I guess he’s spreading his empire across the vast reaches of America here. He seems like he’s opening up a new spot in a new state every single day.

Cunningham: He is. It’s a great service to Tennessee, service to the country because we just don’t have that many conservative news outlets these days. I don’t know if you follow Project Veritas with James O’Keefe who comes out with these corrections.

I forget what he calls them. But each time he forces somebody to make a correction. And these are all mainstream media like CNN, those kind of guys. He does this cute sarcastic video about how they’ve had to correct their news account of Project Veritas.

The point is that we just don’t have any good conservative news sites that we can follow in and know that we’re going to get a conservative voice. Which basically means a factual account of what’s going on.

And that’s why it’s so important for The Tennessee Star to be a part of it. There’s another story going around, Grant. I’m kind of going for a way later, this Gabby Petito story,

Henry: I don’t know. No, I have not even heard.

Cunnigham: This one girl and her boyfriend, I think her fiance, we’re traveling around the country and she disappeared. And it turns out that he is now back at their home in Florida and is refusing to talk about what happened to her.

And what’s fascinating to me is the way this story is kind of unfolded. And, of course, the news media loves these kinds of stories. There is a mystery. There’s a cute young couple. There’s just about everything that is interesting in a story.

But the really interesting thing to me again is how this thing is kind of unfolded. First, it seemed obvious that he was probably the prime suspect.

Then they had a police video where somebody had called the police when the couple had gotten into a fight. Not a big physical fight. And it looked like maybe from the police report that actually she was the aggressor and she was kind of beating up on him a little bit.

It’s still very difficult to know what’s going on. But they also revealed that both of them have some mental issues, some emotional issues which have factored into it. I got to thinking about this story and how similar it is to so many stories we see coming out of Washington, D.C. We’re just now getting an indictment on the Trump Russia probe.

And it takes forever to get information out of government. Thomas Massey, a great liberty-minded congressman from Kentucky, pointed out that some fact, I forget what the issue was but it had just come out of the CDC, and he was asking, why in the world has it taken so long to get this information out of government?

And the problem is as government grows and all these different agencies within the government start protecting their turf. Like the CIA and the national security agencies, it’s almost impossible to get information out of them.

And the parallels with this is Gabby Petito’s story and getting news out of our own government and how difficult it is like pulling teeth. And you talk to congressmen that say, I’m trying to get information out of one of the federal agencies, and I can’t get information.

What! This is a congressman. This is our elected representative. And these arrogant federal agencies are saying, eh, we don’t know whether we can give you the information, we don’t know whether you can be entrusted with the information.

And there’s always been a problem with the over-classification of documents. The security agencies want to classify everything because they don’t want to get anything out. It’s cover your behind basically. (Henry chuckles) 

Henry: Right.

Cunningham: And as government grows bigger, it gets further and further away from the people. You get these entrenched cliques within each agency and they’re fighting with each other.

And they’re allied, for example, in the Department of Education, with the teachers unions. And you see that repeated over and over and over again. You got defense contractors that probably have more clout in the Defense Department than a lot of people at the Pentagon.

And as government gets bigger and bigger and bigger, we get smaller and smaller and smaller. And it’s just amazing how big our government is and how they treat us as outsiders.

We’re the citizens. We’re the ones that grant our power to the government, as the Constitution says. But we have gotten to the point where government is so big and so arrogant.

And the ruling class, especially the liberal elites really think the government should be the embodiment of their morality. That’s, again, the role of government that you were talking about. And it’s so important for us to come back to that basic question every time.

What is the role of government in their lives? Well, it’s certainly not to be an arrogant overseer, but that’s precisely what government has morphed into.

Henry: And I think going on that rant that you just went on there is so important on a day like today, Constitution Day. It’s so important on a day to recognize not just what the founding documents were and what it was about, but the philosophy by which it was meant to instill how we live in America.

And exactly what you just said. This inability to get information either out of D.C. or anywhere else. What’s most frustrating here also is that it seems like some of our politicians playoff that from time to time. They recognize the fact that it’s going to take months, if not years, to actually fully play out some of these stories.

Cunningham: Yes. They depend on it.

Henry: They depend on it. And by the time some of these stories come to fruition, we’ve all forgotten about it. Nobody really cares anymore. The gusto is gone. The real interest behind what the initial impetus for that story was, what do I care anymore?

My guy’s not even there now. But it goes back to what is the role of government in your life and how localized should we be? I’ve heard this phrase before. I’m a Nashvillian first, a Tennesseean second, and a United States citizen third.

And I think the concept there is the play in America was always meant to be that we have super federalism in itself which is a super small federal government, and the States rights are meant to make reign supreme.

Anything that’s not specifically given to the federal government by way, the numerator powers are meant to be left over for the states to control those powers. And we’ve lost sight of that entirely.

Cunningham: Lost sight is an understatement. A complete understatement. We have trampled on that concept completely and totally. And the states have given up their power in return for federal money. And we see this attempt by Tennessee to turn Medicaid into a block grant.

That’s a very small step at taking back some of the power that the federal government has taken from us. This is in terms of health care. TennCare has been a thorn in our side for decades. It was the main reason we had to push for the income tax.

The state income tax Don Sundquist, our governor back in 2000, said, threw his hands up and said I’m sorry, the budget is out of control. We simply don’t have enough money, and we got to have euphemistically they always say another revenue source. (Henry chuckles)

Henry: They always love their new revenue sources.

Cunningham: It would have changed Tennessee completely. And it’s just another indication of how much we really are just serving at the pleasure of the federal government now.

And why it is so important for that rally yesterday for legislators at the state level to say, heck, I want this power back. I don’t want you telling me, I don’t want you micromanaging me every day.

Henry: Well, that’s the idea, right? This concept, this notion that, you know best, what’s for someone else’s life is so pervasive now that it’s seeped into almost everything. There is a story coming out of The Washington Post that I just sort of went viral on Twitter last night.

Headline: Justice Thomas defends the Supreme Court’s independence and warns of destroying our institutions. That idea right there. Destroying our institutions is what I would speak about so much about losing faith in these institutions.

But Justice Thomas here was talking about defending the independence of the Supreme Court. And on Thursday, he said that he didn’t want us to destroy our institutions, and he didn’t want our institutions to basically give us what we want.

He said here, ‘That we’re not ruling based on personal preferences and suggested that the nation’s leaders should not allow others to manipulate our institutions when we don’t get the outcome we like.’

And I think it hit me there in one swoop-in when I realized that the reason why there was so much backlash on Twitter is they just didn’t believe Justice Thomas. When Justice Thomas says, look, I’m not up here to rule on how I feel based upon my bias, I’m here to read the four corners of a document.

Most often when Justice Thomas is writing an opinion just like when Scalia did, his go-to default answer was, I’m not the guy to answer this question for you. This is not my role. It’s not my capacity to tell you how to live your life.

There are clear mechanisms by which you can do this through the Constitution. Convince your fellow man that you’re right or you’re wrong, change hearts and minds, established legislation, and cement it into stone.

My role up here is not to tell you as nine unelected individuals how to live your life, what ought to be and what ought not to be. That is a philosophical concept that I think the left just doesn’t understand and reads as bias. More than we get back from this break.

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beth Harwell on Career as Speaker, Illegal Immigration, and Cultivating Pride of America

Beth Harwell on Career as Speaker, Illegal Immigration, and Cultivating Pride of America

 

Live from Music Row Thursday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed former Tennessee Speaker Beth Harwell in studio to discuss the importance of being proud of America and the economic consequences of illegal immigration.

Leahy: We are joined in studio by the former speaker of the Tennessee House of Representatives, Beth Harwell. Beth, it is really great to have you in studio.

Harwell: Thank you. It’s good to be here. It truly is.

Leahy: When you were a speaker, we just didn’t have the opportunity for an extended conversation because that’s a pretty hectic job from what I can tell.

Harwell: It is. It is. It’s a great job. I enjoyed it tremendously, worked hard at it, and wanted us to have a successful state government and always tried to be a speaker, unlike the one we have at the national level, Nancy Pelosi. Whatever she was doing, I tried to do the opposite. (Laughs) 

Leahy: Don’t even get me started on her. Let’s talk a little bit about your career. You were born in Pennsylvania.

Harwell: Correct.

Leahy: Moved here to Nashville to attend David Lipscomb.

Harwell: That’s correct.

Leahy: Did you along the way, when you graduated from Lipscomb, did you get a Ph.D.?

Harwell: I did. From Vandy. And I have taught for a number of years at Belmont University science and government and how that is.

Leahy: What was your Ph.D. in?

Harwell: Political science. And I enjoyed teaching, especially at the college level. Teaching young people about the basics of government and the history of our great nation. And that’s something that’s lacking in our curriculum today.

Leahy: You think? (Laughs) I don’t know if you know this. We do a National Constitution Bee here. We have a little foundation and we do it and the winners get educational scholarships. Claudia Henneberry now is our executive director for that. We’re going to do it again in October in Brentwood.

Harwell: Wonderful.

Leahy: And you’re more than welcome to attend. Maybe we’ll talk you into being a judge.

Harwell: There you go.

Leahy: But what we found is most public schools – is – that I think they’d rather teach Critical Race Theory than the Constitution.

Harwell: Isn’t that sad?

Leahy: It really is sad.

Harwell: We’re taking a generation of young people and teaching them to be embarrassed that they’re Americans instead of proud of being American.

Everybody knows the country has its flaws, but there’s no other country in the world that I see people fleeing, trying to get into like they are the United States.

Leahy: Well, illegals, according to the Tucker Carlson report, last night, we’ve had one million illegal aliens cross the border into the United States since January, and since the legal but not legitimate current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue took office.

Harwell: I saw that segment last night.

Leahy: Did you see that segment?

Harwell: Yes. And I thought to myself, he’s spot-on on two things.  Number one, what they find administrations doing is illegal.

They don’t have the authority to do what they’re doing. And two, when you don’t have your borders, you don’t have a country. And we’re losing our borders. It’s scary.

Leahy: The specifics that Tucker Carlson uncovered and reported since, is that in January of this year, the U.S. Air Force, the military from Laughlin Air Force Base in Texas has been flying unvaccinated illegal aliens who haven’t been tested for COVID into the heartland of America.

Some of them apparently have been flown in the dark of night into Tennessee, among other places.

Harwell: And they have the footage of it. And we know that it’s happening. What we all have to be aware of is citizens, and no one wants to be cruel, but on the other hand, this is a tremendous burden on our economy. These people come here and they have to be educated. They don’t have work. You’ve got to provide health care. It is a true burden on the state government as well as the federal government. But we can’t afford it. We simply can’t.

Leahy: And while you were a speaker back in 2015, I believe the House and the Senate passed a resolution basically suing the federal government on Tenth Amendment grounds on the NFIB Sebelius case that said it was taking from the citizens of Tennessee to force them to pay for all these benefits for illegal aliens placed here, though not illegally. But through the refugee program that they didn’t want.

Harwell: Right. I absolutely believe that was a valid lawsuit. The Tenth Amendment reserves the rights to the states, not the federal government. And we’ve got this reverse. We’ve allowed the federal government to get way too powerful. And that was never the intention of our founding fathers.

Leahy: Federal courts threw the case out. And I think it was because they said that the Tennessee General Assembly didn’t have standing because the governor at first was Governor Bill Haslam. And then it was Governor Bill Lee who refused to sign on to the lawsuit. Do I have that right?

Harwell: I believe that is correct. And that was a disappointment because I really did think the legislature had taken the right step.

Leahy: Did you have a conversation with then-Governor Haslam and say, you know, you ought to sign on to this. How did he respond?

Harwell: He’s a wonderful man. He was a very good governor for our state. He just philosophically disagreed with us on this. As did Governor Lee. I mean, Governor Lee could have had the opportunity under President Trump to get us out of it as well. And he didn’t.

Leahy: Yeah. That really rankles me, by the way. It was a big mistake on their part. That was a very significant thing that you did there as speaker. When were you first elected to the Tennessee House Representatives?

Harwell: 1988. So a long time. I was speaker for eight years.

Leahy: You were a speaker from 2011-2019. That’s a long time as speaker.

Harwell: Right. It’s a political position, and it’s a tough territory. The House is unique. It’s a rowdy body. But again, I wouldn’t have done anything else. I enjoyed it tremendously.

Leahy: And the House seems to be more active and the Senate is sort of laid back and staid, shall we say. (Laughter)

Harwell: Right.

Listen to the second hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GOP Candidate Robby Starbuck Talks About Growing Up in America Without a Victim Mentality

GOP Candidate Robby Starbuck Talks About Growing Up in America Without a Victim Mentality

 

Live from Music Row Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed GOP candidate for Nashville’s Fifth District, Robby Starbuck in studio to talk about growing up in a Cuban family and working hard for a future in America.

Leahy: In studio Robby Starbuck, a candidate for the Republican nomination for Congress in the Fifth Congressional District currently represented by Jim Cooper, the brother of the tinpot dictator known as Mayor John Cooper. Those are my words, not Robby’s.

(Starbuck chuckles) Robby, yesterday you had a big YouTube video announcement. Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky has endorsed you in glowing terms. You put a YouTube out for that. Tell us about how he came to endorse you and what impact that YouTube videos had so far.

Starbuck: First of all, is there a better endorsement than Rand Paul right now? He’s been right at every step of everything that happened throughout COVID. Like, no question. All along the way, the media says he’s crazy.

And then three months later, he’s proven right every single step of the way. There’s been no bigger advocate of freedom. But this came to be because I made friends with him and his wife a couple of years ago through social media.

Leahy: Through social media?

Starbuck: Yes. We started a relationship through social media.

Leahy: How does that happen with the United States senator?

Starbuck: I have sort of a larger social media accountant.

Leahy: How large is it?

Starbuck: Before the great purge of the election. It was 250,000.

Leahy: That’s pretty good.

Starbuck: And then on YouTube, we’ve got it. I don’t know the exact number. It’s like, 140,000.

Leahy: Is YouTube still allowing you to be on.

Starbuck: So that’s a really funny question. Yes, we have our YouTube account. But our numbers changed this summer. (Leahy chuckles) I made a joke about the fact that I had more subscribers than Joe Biden did.

Leahy: Oh boy are you in trouble.

Starbuck: And literally, I did this whole thing about that. Right afterward, we get a report. There’s a thing called Social Blade that tells you how your metrics and analytics are going. And literally, the next month, we had negative views. (Leahy laughs) Negative 100,000 views.

Leahy: Gee, how did that happen.

Starbuck: No idea. So I send it to our person at YouTube. And he was like, I’ve never seen this before. The loan Republican at YouTube. There is one.

Leahy: Don’t out that person.

Starbuck: No, I’m not outing that. But there’s one. There’s one.

Leahy: There the one Republican at YouTube.

Starbuck: So I made friends with him over social media and with his wife. And we had them on my podcast. My wife and I did a podcast together. And so I was a big promoter of their book, The Case Against Socialism because it’s one of those books that I wish was in every school that every kid would read because we don’t educate kids anymore on the history of socialism and communism.

Leahy: Let me just interrupt for a moment. I’ll invite you to attend the National Constitution Bee that we sponsor every year. I don’t know if you know about that.

Starbuck: I’m in. Yes, I’ve heard about it.

Leahy: And we’ve got a book. We’ll give it to you, but you’re welcome to come. And we give educational scholarships to kids that actually study the Constitution. And back to your point.

Starbuck: You’ll love this then. My daughter this year memorized the Constitution. My oldest.

Leahy: How old is she?

Starbuck: She’s 12 so she did it for a speech meet.

Leahy: We’ve had a couple of 12-year-olds participate in this, so if she wants to come she can participate.

Starbuck: She would love it.

Leahy: I will tell you to get public school teachers to actually promote this, it’s like pulling teeth. We’ve got a few. We’ve got a few out there in a couple of counties. But most public school teachers, because it’s the Constitution of the United States verbatim apparently don’t seem to have much interest in that.

Starbuck: Yeah, that seems like something not super popular in public schools right now. They prefer things that are not based on reality.

Leahy: Critical Race Theory. Black Lives Matter.

Starbuck: Exactly.

Leahy: That’s what they want to promote. 1619 Project. All historical falsehoods.

Starbuck: Exactly.

Leahy: What’s wrong with that picture?

Starbuck: This idea, I think the most dangerous thing about it is the idea that you’re born either a victim or an oppressor, and that’s at the core of Critical Race Theory.

Leahy: What are you, Robby? Are you a victim?

Starbuck: Well, see, that’s the thing is, I’m kind of in the middle, aren’t I? So you can’t really nail it down. I guess I could say I’m the child of a penniless refugee, and I have every reason not to succeed in America.

Leahy: You are a victim.

Starbuck: You can go that route. because And this is actually an argument I’ve made to people as I go. Listen, when I was a kid, I was told every step of the way by my grandparents and my mom that I can do anything. This is America. It’s full of opportunity.

You don’t do what you want to do. That’s your fault. You did something wrong. You work your tail off, you will get what you want. That is why I graduated at 16. If I had been told in school by the people that I was told I needed to trust, by my teachers that I was oppressed and I was somehow a victim, my life story would look very different.

And that’s a scary thing to think about. How many kids with amazing potential are we holding back by telling them you’re automatically a victim and all these people hate you? Its disgusting.

Leahy: And your personal circumstances I think you said your mom was a refugee from Cuba. Your dad was from Oklahoma, but he sort of been in and out of your life.

Starbuck: Yeah. He’s been sort of in and out. It’s one of those things where you could say you had a rough childhood, but I was so lucky to have my grandparents.

Leahy: Your grandparents were key, weren’t they?

Starbuck: They were especially my great-grandpa. My great-grandpa was really like a father to me. He taught me everything I know about life.

Leahy: What did he tell you about jobs?

Starbuck: And he said, you never let go of a good job or a good woman. And that’s why I married young.

Leahy: That’s a good line.

Starbuck: I married at 18, and I never let her go. So it was the best advice I’ve ever been given I think.

Listen to the third hour here:


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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clint Brewer and Mayor Andy Ogles Analyze How Left and Right Are Finding Common Ground

Clint Brewer and Mayor Andy Ogles Analyze How Left and Right Are Finding Common Ground

 

Live from Music Row Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed all-star panelist Clint Brewer and Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles in studio to ponder how the left and right are beginning to find similarities as liberal policies prove too radical.

Leahy: In studio, Clint Brewer, the original all-star panelist, and Andy Ogles mayor of Maury County. That’s an interesting interview we just had with Naomi Wolf.

Ogles: I’ve never met her. And I’m sure Clint, we were talking offline that she was an advisor to Gore.

Leahy: In 2000.

Ogles: She was banned by Twitter. I’d love to meet her and shake her hand. It’s like a badge of honor. (Leahy laughs) Like, holy cow. We may not agree on a lot of issues, but kudos to her for having an opinion that kind of cuts across the grain.

Now, I will say trying to be objective is that I look at my friends on the left and how fervently they will defend the Constitution when it fits their narrative, and when they want to change policy, they’re more than willing to attack the Constitution and to label a breathing document and to throw it out the freaking window.

Brewer: The Bill of Rights is not an a la cart menu. You don’t get to pick and choose what you like.

Leahy: I think I’ll cite the Constitution on this argument and forget it on the other argument.

Brewer: Well, honestly, whenever I hear somebody in a public debate or to say I’m a strict Constitutionalist, I’m immediately suspicious of that person because I’m sure there’s something in there that they don’t want to uphold.

And that happens on both sides of the aisle. But the mayor’s point is well taken. These issues do cut across the grain. You look at her past stance on abortion and now talking about medical freedom, they don’t entirely reconcile.

Ogles: It’s like a game show. I’ll take the Second Amendment for 100, please. (Leahy laughs) It doesn’t work that way. It’s all one document. And, you know, and I would argue that there is no First Amendment without the Second Amendment. They go together, they go hand in hand.

Leahy: That’s interesting because, you know, during my week off, I did some reading on English kings, the Plantagenets after William the Conqueror, and then the Tutors and The War of Roses.

Brewer: Some light vacation reading, Mike?

Leahy: Well, for me, it’s light reading. It’s fun.

But what’s interesting about that is back to your point, you don’t have a First Amendment without a Second Amendment, you know, the right to bear arms. And throughout history, it’s always been about who has the power. Who has the military force?

And if the person wielding that military force is evil or corrupt, it’s bad news if they have superior forces. And if you look at that 500 year period of English history, sometimes the winner was a good King and sometimes not a good King. It’s what we have here right now in the world today.

Brewer: I don’t know that you can preserve democracy like what America attempts to do. You’re in and you’re out without having an armed citizenry.

Leahy: You’ve got to have an armed citizenry. No question about it.

Brewer: The government, whether it’s a party on the left or the party on the right, it has to know that people have the right to defend their homes and defend themselves. And I think it changes the way they do things over the decades.

Ogles: Our government operates at the consent of the governed, but there are folks on the left, especially that have forgotten that notion. I love the Constitution. I love our republic will defend the republic.

But at the same token, for those that are trying to divide this country, they need to understand something and that is the majority of the Fortune 500 corporations are now in the South and the Midwest.

The South and the Midwest don’t need the Northeast. We don’t need California. They can go to hell. We can do this without them. Now, I’m not advocating for any kind of sedition or anything like that.

But what I’m saying is we have an economic might here, and it’s time for the conservative state to stand together.

Leahy: I will tell you many California refugees who have arrived here in Tennessee will tell you California already is hell. (Laughter) That’s why they’re leaving, right?

Brewer: Yeah, of course, but now they’re going into all the hot chicken places and asking for gluten-free hot chicken. (Laughter)

Leahy: Did you just make that up or is that a thing?

Brewer: I imagine it’s happening somewhere.

Leahy: It probably is because this is one of the challenges, right? Tennessee is thriving because it is a bastion of freedom or aspires to be a bastion of freedom. We’ve got no state income tax.

And now one of the challenges is as all of these Californians come in, and it’s mostly Californians, at least here in Middle Tennessee, there are some from Illinois and New York and Connecticut you hear this complaint? Well, that’s not how we do it in California. (Whispers) Go back to California.

Brewer: I know I was in contact with a family through other circumstances, not related to work or professional pursuits, but they said, well, we haven’t left our home since March. I mean, the guidelines there.

I just think it’s open some people’s eyes up to the fact that there is a different way to live and you can come to states like Tennessee and enjoy it. Speaking of opening people’s eyes up. It’s very interesting to have a conversation with Naomi.

I never thought that Naomi Wolf would be a frequent guest on The Tennessee Star Report because, of course, she was, you know, Al Gore, whatever advisor. I don’t know what she advised him on. Maybe on how to dress or something like that.

Ogles: Did she also help invent the Internet?

Brewer: I was hoping to get a play-by-play on how the Internet was created. I do think it’s fascinating. I think it just shows that the pandemic has created some issues socially and from a governance standpoint that I think the mayor used the phrase off the air that they sort of cut across the grain. It’s like the streams are crossing.

Leahy: I think that’s right. It is. And when we have Naomi Wolf on, you see, that happening to a degree but not fully because there are some elements of I don’t know what you might call it. Left-wing theology that she finds hard to abandon, perhaps.

Brewer: I think ideology. I wouldn’t call it theology. You wouldn’t call theology?

Brewer: No. It suggests maybe it involves the divine.

Leahy: I think it’s their view. I use the word theology to describe their adherence to it. The fact to the contrary, that’s sort of funny and obviously reasoning.

Ogles: They’re very polarized right now. You have those on the left and those on the right. And I think most people would peg me on the right and she’s probably somewhere on the left. But this whole idea of medical freedom and the liberties and the shutdown, etcetera, those people that are, in the ‘middle’, those people that self identify as independence, they’re shifting right I think.

And this is just my personal opinion for this next cycle. And so you see, in Texas, we’re winning a county. A Republican Mayor in a blue county on the border of Texas.

Leahy: McAllen, Texas.

Ogles: Hidalgo County. Hillary won it by 40 points. And suddenly they now have a GOP Mayor. What? And so I think that’s the canary in the coal mine that some of these issues, whether it’s immigration reform or medical freedom or shutdowns, you could see not just in Tennessee, in Texas, but in Pennsylvania and across the country this red wave hit the country. I think you could see a sweep in the U.S. House.

Brewer: No, I think you’re right, mayor. The midterms are always dangerous for the party that just won the presidency. So already, historically, you’ve got a pretty big risk involved.

And President Biden came out I think it was last week and said, everybody wants us to move so fast on this progressive agenda, but our margins are pretty thin in both Houses. For his faults, he’s a realist when it comes to legislation. And I think he understands the challenges he’s up against.

Leahy: When he’s couchant.

Brewer: Yes, when he’s couchant. I think they’re doing a really good job of that White House of staying on message at least and having a lot of message discipline, which Biden is not known for.

Leahy: Apparently, part of that message discipline was not acknowledging D-Day.

Brewer: That wasn’t particularly good.

Leahy: So they missed that one. That is their message, though I suppose.

Ogles: Sometimes it’s not what you say, it’s what you don’t say. That’s deafening. When you see this administration not honoring those who served in such a monumental moment in history, not just for the U.S., but for Europe and the Pacific, that says a lot about this administration.

Leahy: Yes. And none of it good.

Listen to the full third hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tennessee State Senator Mark Pody Weighs in on the Movement Against the Federal Government Usurpations

Tennessee State Senator Mark Pody Weighs in on the Movement Against the Federal Government Usurpations

 

Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed State Senator Mark Pody to the studio to discuss states rights and the federal government’s continued usurpation of authority.

Leahy: We are joined in studio by our good friend, State Senator Mark Pody. Mark, the big question for you now with the legal but not legitimate Biden maladministration in power in Washington, it’s more obvious to those of us who love the Constitution in our country that the pushback has to come from states who have for a century allowed the federal government to usurp their powers. And that comes from the state legislatures.

Pody: That’s exactly right. And the Constitution, how we were set up. If we go back, remember that you had 13 original individual states that said, we’re going to come together on certain issues to form the federal government. And they were very specific about what powers and authorities that the states are delegating to the federal government. The federal government does not delegate any power and authority to the states.

And the states said anything that we’re not giving you as a federal government and the 10th Amendment says it remains with the state. It remains with the state. Including in the Constitution, it says the states are supposed to be the ones that set up how elections are done. Well, if we watch what’s happening in Washington, D.C. right now, they’re trying to set how elections are going to be done.

Leahy: That’s unconstitutional.

Pody: That’s exactly right. So the states have to stand up. We have to say that you are overstepping that power and authority, and we reject that. We literally would need to as states to reject it. Even the state legislators, they’re the ones that created the individual cities and counties. It wasn’t that the cities and counties in Tennessee form together to form the state.

The state said, we’re going to make these counties, and here are the authorities and boundaries that you have. And here are the rules that you got to abide by. It is the state legislatures that are actually the strongest entities. If we would use that bond together, we could step back against the overreaching federal government. And if we don’t, every single year, the federal government comes and they’re going to take a little bit more and more and more of our power and authority. And they do it by one thing.

They bribe us. They give us money and everybody’s afraid. Well, we’re going to lose federal funding. I can’t tell you how many times I hear that. Well, we’re going to lose federal money. I would wish that we don’t get any of this kind of federal money. Let’s do it on our own. I just don’t want to be responsible for that federal debt either. Do what we do as states and push back.

Leahy: Now, you brought up the topic of federal money. I’m going to throw you a curveball.

Pody: Yes, Sir.

Leahy: Are you ready?

Pody: Yes!

Leahy: I’m winding up. Here it comes.

Pody: All right. This is going to be all about money.

Leahy: Yes. So I have this idea. One of the reasons why our K-12 public schools are doing so poorly is because the federal government is setting forth a series of rules and regulations that are just stupid and forcing K-12 public schools to follow those rules and regulations. Now, as you know, in the financing of our K-12 public schools, about 40 percent of it is local. 50 percent is from states. And 10 percent from the federal government.

Pody: Yes.

Leahy: So here’s my theory. Here’s my idea. I’m trying to see if I could get members of the state legislature to consider this. And by the way, if you looked at the compliance costs of complying with all these stupid federal regulations, my guess is that they give the state 10 percent. But probably the compliance costs are about another four percent. So the net is maybe six percent. This is my theory. I haven’t investigated it yet. Here’s what I would really like to see.

I would like to see the Tennessee General Assembly pass a bill that says, you know feds, that 10 percent you give us, you can keep it. Take your 10 percent and keep it. And meanwhile, all your regulations, we don’t want to follow them and we’re not going to follow them. And I float this idea out and many state legislators kind of roll their eyes like that could never happen.

Pody: What do you think? I think it would be a terrific idea. I’m going to give you just a prime example. They were in committee and we were going to get $5 million literally, almost $6 million from the federal government. And in that bill, in that money they were going to give us, they said, you have to start now. This was to the Department of Health. They said you have to start using this name-brand condom. And it was going to cost us $80,000 more. And I went and I said, wait a minute.

Leahy: How does the federal government get to tell, where does this come in in terms of this particular brand?

Pody: I’m going to get you here.

Leahy: I mean, they purchased for the distribution of free condoms to the citizens of Tennessee.

Pody: And Tennessee was just using generic ones as well. You can’t use generic free condoms you have to use these name-brand condoms, even though it’s going to cost you $80,000 more.

Leahy: I didn’t know. Where is it said that it’s the role of the state government to distribute condoms?

Pody: It’s not. It is not our role.

Leahy: Apparently, they’ve been doing it with offbrand condoms

Pody: Yes. So federal funding was giving this. So the argument was Pody, do you want to get this $5 million? If you do, you have to accept that somebody, and I’m sure there has to be a contract somewhere, somebody with these name brand condoms in Congress. But they said, you have to use these condoms. So the question is, do we pay this extra $80,000 to get that $5 million? But there are so many incidents like that that when you’re trying to get so-called free money, it’s not free money.

Leahy: It’s always got strings on it.

Pody: It’s always got string. The same thing in the Department of Education, just exactly like you’re talking about Here’s the money and you have to use it exactly this way, that way. And in education, I’m going to tell you, no matter how much money we give, they’re going to always find ways to have needs for more. And it’s not up to us to do every single thing for every single person in Tennessee. That’s not government’s role. A government’s role is to protect our institution, individual rights, and freedoms and not to do for the people, the things that we’re supposed to do for ourselves.

Leahy: Now, one thing that I’ve noticed and I think this may be new to you that we started The Tennessee Star, the only conservative news outlet in all of Tennessee surprisingly four years ago. Been doing great. And we’ve been doing this show here to The Tennessee Star Report for about two and a half years. We’ve expanded to other states.

Pody: Florida. Congratulations.

Leahy: Oh, okay. I was going to tell you, we just launched Florida. We’re going to launch Florida, April 21 St, The Florida Capital Star. And the reason we’re launching it seems to me the leader in the pushback movement against the federal government usurpations is Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida.

Pody: Yes.

Leahy: That’s one of the reasons. And we’re told by the people down there that the legacy media is not getting him a fair shake. We believe that to be true. One of the bills that they’ve considered down in Florida has to do with pushing back against Big Tech censorship. There is a similar bill under consideration here. I wonder if you could give us an update on where that particular bill is? What are its components? And where does it stand?

Pody: Sure. And I will tell you that as legislators on the Senate side, the Republicans, we actually try and communicate with each other on a fairly regular basis. Just within Tennessee. So it’s not uncommon for us as Republican senators, just to be saying, hey, what’s going on and who’s carrying what? And so when this was heard that this was happening, Senator Mike Bell kind of texted and said, hey, I’m going to be interested in running this bill, and we all kind of said, okay, we don’t need 10 bills doing the same thing.

Leahy: Smart.

Pody: So we said, go ahead and you take care of that. So I’m not sure where Senator Bell’s bill is, but he is working on a bill, something like that for Big Tech.

Leahy: Okay, good, good. I’ll be curious to see that. And we’ll get Senator Bell in here in studio to talk a little bit about it in the near future. Speaking of which, the Tennessee General Assembly has another month or so to go?

Pody: We should be out by the end of April. I’ve been up here now for a while that I get to kind of see as committees are shutting down, and we’re going into final calendars and such the number of bills that we have are starting to be heard to get through. And almost all of my bills. I only got a couple left that I got to go through committees with, and we’ll be done. We’ll be just voting on the budget.

Leahy: You have a couple bills still in play?

Pody: I do. In fact, I had one bill that went to summer study yesterday, and it was a great bill. It was terrific.

Listen to the full second hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.