January 30th, 2017 at 2:59 pm
This Week’s “Your Turn” Radio Lineup
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CST to 6:00 p.m. CST (that’s 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EST) on Northwest Florida’s 1330 AM WEBY, as she hosts her radio show, “Your Turn: Meeting Nonsense with Commonsense.” Today’s guest lineup includes:

4:00 CST/5:00 pm EST:  Aparna Mathur, Resident Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute – Paid Family Leave;

4:15 CST/5:15 pm EST:  David North, Fellow of the Center for Immigration Studies – 180,000 New Jobs with the Stroke of a Pen;

4:30 CST/5:30 pm EST:  Matthew Clark, Senior Counsel for Digital Advocacy with the American Center for Law and Justice – SCOTUS Nomination;

5:00 CST/6:00 pm EST:  Lt. Col. David Glassman, USMC (ret.) – Fishing for AHERO; and

5:30 CST/6:30 pm EST:  Sandi Eubanks, Treasurer of Citizens for Education – Santa Rosa School District Half Cent Sales Tax Renewal.

Listen live on the Internet here. Call in to share your comments or ask questions of today’s guests at (850) 623-1330.


January 28th, 2017 at 10:40 am
The Myth of the “Scandal-Free” Obama Administration
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

In an interview with CFIF, Hans von Spakovsky, Senior Legal Fellow at the Heritage Foundation, discusses why it is disingenuous to deem the Obama presidency as “scandal-free,” how the myth has been perpetuated by the media and Mr. Obama’s penchant for secrecy.

Listen to the interview here.


January 24th, 2017 at 11:39 am
CFIF Applauds Trump Order Granting Approval to Dakota Access Pipeline
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

Today, President Trump signed executive actions advancing the Dakota Access Pipeline, thereby helping restore faith in due process of law.   Company officials followed the letter of the law in their completion of the approval process, and it is a relief to see that diligence recognized by President Trump.

CFIF anticipates a timely completion of Dakota Access, which paves the way for safe, reliable access to critical energy resources across the region.


January 24th, 2017 at 9:12 am
Ramirez Cartoon: Failed Policies
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

Below is one of the latest cartoons from two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael Ramirez.

View more of Michael Ramirez’s cartoons on CFIF’s website here.


January 23rd, 2017 at 3:43 pm
Intellectual Property: Trump Administration Can Reverse Eight Years of Erosion Under Obama
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

In Forbes today, intellectual property (IP) attorney Howard Hogan highlights the importance of IP to the American economy (38% of GDP and 30% of jobs) and considers the opportunity for positive change under a Trump Administration after eight years of poor leadership under Barack Obama.

Hogan highlights the pernicious influence of Google during the past eight years, given its self-interest in weakening America’s historic protection of IP rights and free-riding off of others’ creations:

Arguably, no company has been more influential than Google in setting policy in America in recent years…  White House officials met with employees of Google or related companies 427 times – an average of more than once a week, while approximately 30 Google personnel have taken positions in the Obama Administration, and about 20 former members of the White House staff have landed at Google…

One of the consistent goals of this political machine has been to promote policies that have the effect of weakening legal protections for IP rights.  The reason for these policy preferences lies in Google’s role as content distributor and advertiser.  Google does not create the overwhelming majority of the content that its users seek;  it generates much of its revenue by displaying ads while connecting users to content created by others, or by selling platforms to access such content.  For Google, the ability to distribute popular third-party content or sell rights to use other companies’ trademarks with few strings attached is tantalizingly profitable.”

Among the destructive agenda items pushed by Google?  The “set-top box” proposal within Obama’s Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which we at CFIF continue to emphatically oppose:

A recent example was the so-called ’set-top box rule’ proposed by the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission.  The proposal would have used a statute designed to promote competition among cable television set-top boxes as a vehicle to force cable companies to give tech companies like Google free access to raw video and data feeds that cable companies provide to their customers.

While much about the proposed rule remains controversial, there is no doubt that it would have benefited the Googles of the world, who could sell devices and advertising based on content that they had not licensed from copyright owners, without paying royalties, and with little fear that the owners would be able to enforce the licensing restrictions that led them to offer the video content to cable companies in the first place.  Google and its allied advocacy groups all filed comments in support of the proposal.  Even President Obama threw his support behind the rule, prompting some to question whether he was exerting undue pressure on a supposedly independent agency.”

As Howard concludes, companies like Google contribute a great deal to the American economy and our lives, but we must also do a far better job of protecting American IP rights, which may be our greatest comparative advantage over other nations in an increasingly competitive global information economy.


January 16th, 2017 at 2:12 pm
Stat of the Day: Terrible Deterioration of Race Relations Under Obama
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

In our Liberty Update commentary last week, we noted the many failures of Barack Obama as president over the past eight years.  Today, as the nation celebrates Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a Washington Post-ABC News survey shows just how disastrously race relations have declined under his watch:

In a recent Washington Post-ABC News poll, 63 percent of Americans think race relations are ‘generally bad.’ Shortly after Obama took office, that number was 22 percent. In the same time period, those who think race relations are ‘generally good’ plummeted from 66 percent to 32 percent.”

Of his failures and disastrous legacy, this may be the most depressing.


January 15th, 2017 at 11:18 am
Podcast: Obama’s Legacy
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

In an interview with CFIF, Genevieve Wood, Senior Fellow in Communications at The Heritage Foundation and Senior Contributor at The Daily Signal, discusses President Obama’s failed legacy and broken promises in areas such as foreign policy, regulations, constitutional powers and the judiciary.

Listen to the interview here.


January 13th, 2017 at 2:37 pm
ObamaCare: Repeal and Replace, Not Repeal and Delay
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

In an interview with CFIF, Sally Pipes, President and CEO of the Pacific Research Institute, discusses the fate of ObamaCare, why Congress should not delay ObamaCare’s repeal and different options for its replacement.

Listen to the interview here.


January 11th, 2017 at 4:04 pm
Image of the Day: Over Half of Military Members Hold Unfavorable View of Obama
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

Ouch.  According to a new Military Times survey, approximately 52% of military members surveyed hold a “very unfavorable” or “somewhat unfavorable” opinion of Barack Obama after eight years of his leadership, while only 36% hold a “very favorable” or “somewhat favorable” view of him.

Military Times Poll

Military Times Poll

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January 10th, 2017 at 5:04 pm
CFIF Submits FOIA Requests on Dakota Access Pipeline Decision
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

Tribal Chairman’s sister previously worked at the White House and Department of Interior

ALEXANDRIA, VA – Over recent days, the Center for Individual Freedom (CFIF) has sent Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to five government agencies seeking information on communications between officials at those agencies and Jodi Gillette, the sister of the Chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Dave Archambault.

“There have been a lot of rumors about the backroom dealings that led to the Administration’s decision to not issue the final easement for the Dakota Access Pipeline,” said Timothy Lee, CFIF’s Senior Vice President of Legal and Public Affairs.  “We would hope that the self-purported ‘most transparent Administration in history’ would provide the American people with the background and information that went into this important decision to halt an infrastructure project that had already been approved and was more than 90 percent complete.”

From the FOIA requests:

There is growing concern about the relationship between Dave Archambault II’s sister, Jodi Gillette, and the Obama Administration.  Mr. Archambault is the chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe (SRST) and a critic of the project.  Ms. Gillette is a former senior advisor to the President and Secretary of the Interior, and is currently a lobbyist on behalf of the Standing Rock Sioux with Sonosky, Chambers, Chambers, Endreson & Perry, LLP.  We seek to ensure that Mr. Archambault and Ms. Gillette haven’t wielded improper influence over the Administration’s policies that have resulted in delays in the completion of the Dakota Access Pipeline project

I request access to and copies of all records since February 1, 2016, related in any way to the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) and Jodi Gillette. This request includes, but is not limited to, all emails, other correspondence, correspondence logs, records of meetings, records of appointments and visitor logs.

CFIF sent the FOIA requests to the Departments of Interior, Justice and Energy, as well as the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Army Corps of Engineers.

“Due to the scope of the project and the consequences of the Administration’s decision, we are currently reviewing other potential FOIA requests on the matter,” Mr. Lee added.

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January 9th, 2017 at 1:57 pm
This Week’s “Your Turn” Radio Lineup
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CDT to 6:00 p.m. CST (that’s 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EST) on Northwest Florida’s 1330 AM WEBY, as she hosts her radio show, “Your Turn: Meeting Nonsense with Commonsense.” Today’s guest lineup includes:

4:00 CST/5:00 pm EST:  Genevieve Wood, Senior Fellow in Communications and Senior Contributor, The Daily Signal at The Heritage Foundation – President Obama’s Legacy;

4:20 CST/5:20 pm EST:  Carrie Severino, Chief Counsel and Policy Director of the Judicial Crisis Network – Trump’s Potential SCOTUS Nominee;

4:30 CST/5:30 pm EST:  Clark Neily, Senior Attorney at the Institute for Justice – Sharing Economy;

4:45 CST/5:45 pm EST:  David Adesnik, Policy Director at the Foreign Policy Initiative – Foreign Policy in the New Administration;

5:00 CST/6:00 pm EST:  Michael Auslin, Resident Scholar and Director of Japan Studies at the American Enterprise Institute – US-Asian Relations;

5:20 CST/6:20 pm EST:  Timothy Lee, CFIF’s Senior Vice President of Legal and Public Affairs: In the News – TV Blackouts, Climate Alarmists and Nominees; and

5:30 CST/6:30 pm EST:  Sally Pipes, President and CEO of Pacific Research Institute – The Fate of OmamaCare.

Listen live on the Internet here. Call in to share your comments or ask questions of today’s guests at (850) 623-1330.


January 3rd, 2017 at 9:56 am
Amid Other Failed 2016 Predictions, Don’t Forget Climate Alarmists’
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

Amid the wreckage of failed political predictions last year, we shouldn’t overlook another year of failed global warming predictions.  One year ago, Cambridge University professor and global warming alarmist Peter Wadhams predicted that in 2016, Arctic ice would either disappear or decline to “record low” levels:

‘My prediction remains that the Arctic ice may well disappear, that is, have an area of less than one million square kilometers for September of this year,’ he said.  ’Even if the ice doesn’t completely disappear, it is very likely that this will be a record low year.  I’m convinced it will be less than 3.4 million square kilometers [the current record low].  I think there’s a reasonable chance it could get down to a million this year, and if it doesn’t do it this year, it will do it next year.’”

So how did that turn out?  Ice levels actually grew by a significant amount:

Dire predictions that the Arctic would be devoid of sea ice by September this year have proven to be unfounded after the latest satellite images showed there is far more now than in 2012…  [W]hen figures were released for the yearly minimum on September 10, they showed that there was still 1.6 million square kilometers of sea ice, which was 21 percent more than the lowest point in 2012.  For the month of September overall, there was 31 percent more ice than in 2012, figures released this week from the National Snow and Ice Data Centre (NSIDC) show.  This amounts to an extra 421,000 million square kilometers of sea ice.”

Oh, well.  Although the  climate alarm industry believes that there won’t be a next year, there’s always  next year.


December 27th, 2016 at 9:02 am
NY Gov. Cuomo Administration Remains Unable to Defend Energy Boondoggle
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

In an op-ed published last week at The Daily Caller, CFIF Sr. Vice President Timothy Lee explains how New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Administration remains unable to defend its crony capitalist Clean Energy Standard (CES) against burgeoning bipartisan public opposition.

According to Mr. Lee:

Conspicuously, Cuomo Administration officials remain unable to defend the plan against burgeoning public opposition.  In a recent local television appearance, Cuomo’s Public Service Commission Chair Audrey Zibelman couldn’t justify the decision to provide billions of dollars in subsidies to upstate plants while simultaneously closing downstate plants, and she stubbornly refused to acknowledge the plan’s high costs.

Nuclear power remains a reliable domestic energy source that the United States can cleanly and safely utilize to a far greater extent.

Governor Cuomo’s crony capitalist CES scheme isn’t the way to go about it.  The growing bipartisan opposition movement is an encouraging sign, one that should confirm for New Yorkers of all political leanings that the plan should be rejected.

Read the entire op-ed here.


December 25th, 2016 at 10:11 am
Ramirez Cartoon: Obama’s Gift
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

Below is one of the latest cartoons from two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael Ramirez.

View more of Michael Ramirez’s cartoons on CFIF’s website here.


December 16th, 2016 at 6:54 pm
Empire Center: Gov. Cuomo’s Green Energy CES Boondoggle Already Beginning to Collapse
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

For months now we’ve been exposing an inexcusable, costly, climate alarmist, crony capitalist, green energy boondoggle imposed upon New York state citizens by Governor Andrew Cuomo and the state’s Public Service Commission (PSC) composed entirely of his appointees.

Specifically, the PSC rushed through their “Clean Energy Standard” (CES) last August, which requires that 50% of power generated in the state come from carbon-neutral sources by 2030.  The CES works by forcing power companies to buy “Zero Emission Credits” (ZECs) from a state bureaucracy on behalf of financially struggling upstate nuclear energy plants.  In the first two years of the plan alone, the cost is an estimated $1 billion.  For the entire span of the CES scheme, the estimate is approximately $8 billion.

Crony capitalism enters the stage in the sense that those subsidies will benefit Exelon, a single company that owns all of the struggling plants standing to benefit.  Think of it as a state-level Solyndra, with costs ultimately hitting New York businesses and consumers, as usual.

These are just some of the reasons that citizens and groups spanning the political spectrum have spoken out against the scheme.

But there’s positive news to report.  Confronted with the CES’s inherent contradictions and flaws, the Cuomo Administration is already drastically scaling back the plan, as reported by the Empire Center:

The State Public Service Commission has quietly reduced the amount of renewable energy that utilities will have to purchase next year by 94 percent, according to PSC documents.

In August, as part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Clean Energy Standard, the PSC ordered utilities and others to next year purchase renewable energy credits (RECs) equivalent to 0.6 percent of their electricity usage.  This amounted to a total of 974,000 megawatt-hours (MWh) of RECs, which are generated when a renewablee plant such as a solar farm or wind turbine sells power into the electrical grid.  The governor’s ultimate goal is for 50 percent of the state’s electricity to come from renewables by 2030, and 2017 was to be the first year in which the PSC incrementally required these ‘load-serving entities’ to financially support increasing amounts of renewable energy.

But in an ‘Order Providing Clarification’ issued on November 17, the 2017 amount was slashed from 974,000 to 56,142 MWh – a 94 percent reduction – after the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) determined few renewables would actually qualify to issue the credits. Load-serving entities will now have to purchase RECs equating to just 0.035 percent of their total usage.”

And just as the costs of the plan ultimately hit New York consumers and businesses, scaling back the plan’s ambitions benefits those consumers and businesses, as the Empire Center notes:  ”For starters, the move will collectively save ratepayers $19.4 million in 2017 as utilities and others aren’t forced to buy as many credits as anticipated.”

The entire boondoggle was transparently destined to fail, but even skeptics didn’t anticipate it would begin collapsing under its own weight this quickly.  But New Yorkers shouldn’t relent until the entire CES is consigned permanently to the policy ash heap.

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December 13th, 2016 at 11:30 am
Withdrawing From Obama’s Climate Treaty
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

In an interview with CFIF, Phil Kerpen, President of American Commitment, discusses why Donald Trump should allow the Senate to kill President Obama’s controversial global warming treaty, when a treaty is not a treaty and whether Obama may be his own worst enemy when it comes to regulations.

Listen to the interview here.


December 12th, 2016 at 4:37 pm
This Week’s “Your Turn” Radio Show Lineup
Posted by CFIF Staff Print
Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CDT to 6:00 p.m. CDT (that’s 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EDT) on Northwest Florida’s 1330 AM WEBY, as she hosts her radio show, “Your Turn: Meeting Nonsense with Commonsense.”   Today’s guest lineup includes:

4:00 CDT/5:00 pm EDT: Anthony Summers, NY Times Best-Selling Author: “A Matter of Honor Pearl Harbor: Betrayal, Blame and a Family’s Quest for Justice;

4:30 CDT/5:30 pm EDT: Brian Slattery, Policy Analyst, Defense and Security Studies at the Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy at The Heritage Foundation: National Defense Authorization Act;

4:45 CDT/5:45 pm EDT: Tzvi Kahn, Senior Policy Analyst at the Foreign Policy Initiative: Russia and the Middle East;

5:00 CDT/6:00 pm EDT: Vincent Vernuccio, Director of Labor Policy at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy: Labor Reform Wins Big on Election Day; and

5:30 CDT/6:30 pm EDT: Timothy Lee, CFIF’s Senior Vice President of Legal and Public Affairs: “Fake News” and President Obama’s Legacy.

Listen live on the Internet here. Call in to share your comments or ask questions of today’s guests at (850) 623-1330.


December 5th, 2016 at 11:06 am
The Recount
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

Below is one of the latest cartoons from two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael Ramirez.

View more of Michael Ramirez’s cartoons on CFIF’s website here.


December 2nd, 2016 at 4:24 pm
ATSC 3.0: What Could It Mean for American Consumers?
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

Next month’s arrival of a new Trump Administration, alongside a Congress ready to hit the ground running, promises a flurry of corrective activity after eight years of Barack Obama.

However, Americans should remain vigilant against regulatory mischief that some are trying to push through unnoticed at the outset of the new Administration and Congress.

Exhibit A:  An effort by broadcasters to convince Obama’s Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to approve an entirely new broadcast television standard known as ATSC 3.0.

In a nutshell, the ATSC 3.0 standard amounts to yet another new federal action upon a private marketplace and a handout to a favored industry that could inflict significant and unnecessary costs, ultimately to be paid by consumers.

Under current law, cable and satellite television providers must carry local television stations, so the regulatory scales are already tipped in broadcasters’ favor.  The proposed new mandate could extend the scope of providers’ obligations requiring them to transmit broadcast signals in the new standard to the public.

As a result, consumers who currently receive local stations over the air or via cable or satellite providers suddenly would face the possibility of incurring the cost of new equipment in order to receive the new signal, as current equipment does not support the new standard.  Obviously, millions of consumers who are already struggling to make ends meet could thus be forced to pay – whether through higher monthly subscription fees or direct charge – for new equipment for a “benefit” that may not be needed or even desired.

Satellite and cable providers could also face technological hurdles to accommodate the new standard, which could inevitably lead to additional costs and quality assurance issues.  Ultimately, subscribers could have to pay those costs and endure those potential technological glitches as well.

Keep in mind that all of these costs and changes could be imposed without a sober cost/benefit analysis from the FCC.  It’s precisely the sort of hasty, top-down, crony capitalist federal regulatory action that has tested the limits of American tolerance over the past decade.

Technological advance is a good thing, whether in the TV market or elsewhere.  But that’s something that should occur as the result of market forces, not through fast-tracked federal regulatory action riddled by too many uncertainties.


November 29th, 2016 at 9:16 am
How ObamaCare is Severely Harming Americans Nationwide
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

In an interview with CFIF, Jim Martin, Chairman of 60 Plus Association, discusses skyrocketing healthcare premiums, ObamaCare’s march toward full government control over our healthcare system, and the issue of physician and nursing shortages.

Listen to the interview here.