How Some State Politicians Are Using Government to Threaten Free Speech

co-written with Dan Caldwell, Director of Policy of Concerned Veterans for America

When it comes to threatening the free speech rights of American citizens, progressives have largely been the culprits at the federal level.

Yet increasingly, Republican state legislators have taken up this crusade.

Last month, New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez rightly vetoed a Republican-supported bill that would have forced nonprofits to disclose their supporters’ personal information, saying it would “likely discourage charities and other groups that are primarily non-political from advocating for their cause.”

Now, New Mexico’s Democratic secretary of state might impose the same disclosure requirements through campaign finance rules she plans to unveil later this year.

Americans for Prosperity Foundation Announces Six-Figure Right-To-Work Issue Education Effort

St. Louis, MO – Today, the Missouri chapter of Americans for Prosperity Foundation (AFP-Foundation) announced a six-figure issue education effort to inform Missourians about the benefits of the recently-passed right-to-work legislation. AFP-Foundation will use digital ads, door-to-door canvassing, volunteer phone calls, and mailers to educate residents of how right-to-work affects Missouri workers.

The first mailer will land in residents’ mailboxes this week, which can be viewed here. The campaign also features a video:

You can learn more about the education campaign at showmeworkerfreedom.com.

AFP-Foundation Missouri State Director Jeremy Cady issued the following statement on the right-to-work education campaign:

“We want to make sure all Missourians understand the facts about how right-to-work protects the freedom of every worker to decide whether to join a union or pay union dues. Passing this law was a major victory for worker freedom and we must make sure all Missourians hear the facts on how this law affects them.

“This campaign also solidifies the Foundation’s grassroots commitment and our mission to make sure every resident is armed with the knowledge to make informed decisions.”

The It’s Working effort is a project of Americans for Prosperity Foundation (AFP Foundation), a nonpartisan organization committed to educating citizens about the value of limited government and a free market economy. AFP Foundation’s educational programs and analyses help the public at large understand why the American free enterprise system is the best method to ensuring prosperity for all Americans. For more information, please visit itsworking.AmericansForProsperityFoundation.org.

Gorsuch deserves a swift confirmation

U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill recently met with Judge Neil Gorsuch, President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee. Although she remains tight-lipped about whether she’ll support his confirmation, it should be the easiest vote she makes in the U.S. Senate this year.

Judge Gorsuch is a brilliant judge with profound respect for the Constitution. After graduating from Columbia University in just three years, he earned a degree from Harvard Law School as well as a Ph.D. in philosophy from Oxford. He went on to clerk for Supreme Court Justices Byron White and Anthony Kennedy.

Judge Gorsuch is also a mainstream nominee who has received bipartisan support throughout his career. When he was nominated to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in 2006, senators on both sides of the aisle found him so uncontroversial that they unanimously confirmed him on a voice vote. Sens. Chuck Schumer, Dianne Feinstein, Ron Wyden, and nine other current Democratic senators were in office at the time of Judge Gorsuch’s confirmation.

Sen. Roy Blunt of Missouri must work to fix a broken system

The stunning results of the election show that voters are demanding change. People across the country feel like Washington has rigged the system against them — and they are right. On issues ranging from health care to the tax code, government policies are harming working Americans while enriching special interests.

Missouri voters chose to send Sen. Roy Blunt back to Washington to tackle these issues. Now he must work to reform our broken system. Otherwise, he risks losing the support of the hardworking Missourians who entrusted him with this task.

Missouri workers won on Election Day

Missouri workers have something to be hopeful about after the Nov. 8 election. When he takes office, Governor-elect Eric Greitens will quickly take up an issue he advocated throughout his campaign: giving workers the freedom to decide whether they should support a union.

Many Missouri workers have been denied that freedom for decades, and new leadership in Jefferson City can make sure the “right to work” becomes enshrined in our state law.

Currently, all Missourians are required by law to pay union dues if they take a job at a unionized business. Regardless of whether workers agree with the union’s political activity or other stances, they’re forced to hand over part of their wages to the union as a condition of employment.

Doctors Push Opioids on Patients

Senator Claire McCaskill traveled the state last week to push for a Prescription Database Management Program. McCaskill wants the government to track your prescriptions because you cannot be trusted.

McCaskill tells us a PDMP is a tool in fighting opioid addiction and abuse. To date, Missouri is the only state in the union to force its citizens into a government-controlled prescription database. And though some push PDMP as the solution to stop abuse, many states with PDMPs, have far higher rates of abuse than Missouri.

But is a PDMP the answer to stopping abuse?

Novus, a medical detox center, says addiction and overdose may occur even if an opioid is taken as prescribed. They reference a 2010 study entitled, “Opioid Prescriptions for Chronic Pain and Overdose,” which shows that, despite PDMPs in nearly every state, opioid prescriptions have increased 800% over the past ten years across the nation.

Upcoming Veto Override of Constitutional Carry

Governor Jay Nixon revealed his priority with his veto of SB 656 – government over citizens.

Besides the dangers of allowing the government to force citizens to ask permission from bureaucrats before practicing a Natural Right, we also have privacy concerns.

As was mentioned in a previous article, Governor Nixon gave the concealed carry permit list to the federal government, even though state law prohibits such data sharing.

SB 656’s Constitutional Carry provision rectifies these issues.

Constitutional Carry protects your ability to practice your Natural, God-given right of self-defense without government intervention. Further, it gives you the option of not being in another state database.

Government is Still Tracking Your CCW Data

Missourians support their 2nd Amendment rights. Many of them support constitutional carry. Representative Eric Burlison’s HB 1468, which creates constitutional carry in Missouri, was heard in the Senate after passing the House by a vote of 112 to 37.

Constitutional carry allows any individual who may carry a firearm in the open to also carry concealed.

Representative Eric Burlison made a good point in the hearing when he said throwing a piece of cloth over a firearm shouldn’t make you a criminal. If you can legally carry a firearm on your hip, putting a jacket on shouldn’t make you a criminal.

But there’s still another issue at hand. Your privacy.

In 2013 that the Department of Revenue handed the feds a list of the CCW permits holders. The Department of Revenue had this information because a printed endorsement on a driver’s license was the method of issuing permits.

Standing Alone Against Higher Taxes

SB 623, a bill designed to take advantage of lower gas prices to raise your taxes, was perfected in the Missouri Senate last week.

During the Thursday press conference Senator Libla, sponsor of SB 623, mentioned the Missouri Alliance for Freedom was the ONLY group to oppose it.

The quote from the Fulton Sun:
“They were the only ones who opposed the bill in committee, when we had 30 other groups — all kinds of groups from all over the state — support the bill in the committee,” Libla said at a Thursday news conference.

Missouri Alliance for Freedom was the only witness to testify against this bill.

However, the quote is slightly misleading. The quote attempts to make you believe a significant number of groups representing constituents are supporting SB 623. We would disagree.

Below is a review of the witnesses who testified that day.

First was Patrick McKenna of the Missouri Department of Transportation. Without a doubt, a government agency is going to support higher taxes to fuel their bureaucracy. McKenna did not disappoint us.

Even while pleading for more money the director said all federal funds should go to further expansion and new projects. While funding is apparently low the director of MODOT is advocating to increase our maintenance costs. Again, the bureaucracy will never disappoint us.

Other representatives of bureaucracy to testify were the Missouri Municipal League and the Missouri Association of Counties (counties and cities get a portion of any increase in taxes).

Other groups to testify were the Heavy Constructors Association, Mercury Alliance, Missouri Petroleum Association, Associated General Contractors, the Missouri Trucking Association, Saint Louis Building Trades, and the Missouri Council of Engineering Companies. What do all these particular groups have in common? These groups represent those who profit from highway construction profits. Many of them representing big corporations advocating to raise your taxes to increase their bank accounts.

Of course, many chambers of commerce testified. No doubt many of their members also belong to the associations listed above. A group of companies paying many groups to lobby for a tax increase to make it appear there is overwhelming support.

During the entire hearing, there was one witness who could claim to be an individual testifying of their volition and not for an association. However, that individual was from Kansas, works for an engineering/construction company, and was the past president of the Missouri Society of Professional Engineers.

Was the Missouri Alliance for Freedom the only group to oppose the tax increase? Absolutely. We’re proud to stand between your wallet and government. We will continue to do so regardless of the opposition.

If you agree a new tax increase is wrong for the State of Missouri, we currently have petition opposing this tax and would appreciate your support.

Standing Alone Against Higher Taxes

SB 623, a bill designed to take advantage of lower gas prices to raise your taxes, was perfected in the Missouri Senate last week.

During the Thursday press conference Senator Libla, sponsor of SB 623, mentioned the Missouri Alliance for Freedom was the ONLY group to oppose it.

The quote from the Fulton Sun:
“They were the only ones who opposed the bill in committee, when we had 30 other groups — all kinds of groups from all over the state — support the bill in the committee,” Libla said at a Thursday news conference.

Missouri Alliance for Freedom was the only witness to testify against this bill.