Deadly clashes between the Israeli army and Hamas militants have reportedly broken a newly agreed three-day cease-fire over the Gaza strip. The White House has meanwhile urged Israel to do more to try and limit civilian casualties.
CNN reported on Friday morning that both sides are accusing each other of violating the truce. Gaza Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra claimed that an Israeli attack in southern Gaza killed 27 people and wounded more than 100 others, while Israeli spokesman Mark Regev shared that Israeli soldiers were attacked in a "brutal incident" that required them to defend themselves.
"As you know, we first and foremost believe in Israel's government – in the Israeli government's right to and obligation to defend their citizens. They've chosen to take military action to provide for that protection. But as you also note, we've been very clear that Israel needs to do more to live up to its own standards to limit the civilian casualties," Deputy Press Secretary Eric Schultz said, responding to questions about an earlier White House statement condemning the shelling on U.N. schools and shelters. more >>
Within their coalition, the Democratic Party has both those who believe religion causes harm and those who find great value in their religious faith. Much of the party's future will depend on how party leaders navigate these opposing views.
Part one of this series pointed out that the Democratic Party represents well both the non-religious and racial minorities. In the future, however, the religious in America will be mostly non-whites and the non-religious will be mostly whites. To win elections, therefore, the party will need to manage the differences between these groups.
One can, of course, be non-religious without being anti-religion. A problem for Democrats, though, is that some of the loudest voices from the secular left in recent years have demonstrated suspicion or open hostility toward religiously motivated viewpoints. In such an environment, the more that liberalism becomes associated with secularism, the more difficult it will be for the Democratic Party to mobilize those for whom religion motivates liberal political beliefs. more >>
WASHINGTON – At a Wednesday House committee hearing, experts debated whether or not a special counsel should be appointed to investigate claims that the Internal Revenue Service was unlawfully targeting conservative groups.
The House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary heard testimony Wednesday from three experts on the matter, with one calling the current efforts by the Justice Department a "faux investigation."
Testimony was given by Jay Sekulow of the American Center for Law and Justice, Professor Ronald Rotunda of Chapman University, and Professor Charles Tiefer of the University of Baltimore School of Law. more >>
Obamacare has proven again to be the biggest legislative failure in history, with last week's ruling that its subsidies are illegal. These subsidies induced some 5 million Americans to sign up for Obamacare but are prohibited by law as held by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in Halbig v. Burwell.
This humiliation to the Obama administration was a devastating setback to legislation already disfavored by a 59-40 percent margin among the public, according to the latest CNN poll. Twice as many Americans say they are being hurt rather than helped by Obamacare.
Officially known as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Obamacare is neither affordable nor protective of patients. It promised subsidies for millions of Americans to buy new health insurance and to pay costly premiums that have driven insurance company stock values to record highs. more >>
You know you've hit a sore spot when the Left starts screeching.
MSNBC host Rachel Maddow's producer, Steve Benen, just took a whack at the American Civil Rights Union's new booklet, The Truth About Jim Crow, which National Review Online writer John Fund wrote about in a recent column.
Benen cites a critique from the Atlanta Journal Constitution blogger Jay Bookman: "Jay Bookman took a closer look at the pamphlet Fund's piece was promoting, highlighting some of its more glaring errors of fact and judgment." more >>
President Obama has nominated Rabbi David Saperstein to be the next ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom at the State Department, a position that has been vacant since late last year. The announcement on Monday also marks the first time that a non-Christian will hold the job, which was created in 1998.
"I am grateful that Rabbi Saperstein has chosen to dedicate his talent to serving the American people at this important time for our country. I look forward to working with him in the months and years ahead," Obama said. Saperstein, director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, now awaits Senate confirmation.
The nomination came with some controversy, namely the fact the post sat vacant for nine months. Intended for the purpose of promoting and defending religious freedom around the world, the position was not filled for two years until Suzan Johnson Cook took the post in 2011. However, Cook left in October during a time of intensified religious persecution globally, especially in the Middle East. more >>