This story is from the Daily Signal, and it’s about a new (April 2015) Kansas law that produced great effects in the last year.
Over the past several years, the number of Americans on food stamps has soared. In particular, since 2009, the number of “able-bodied-adults” without dependents receiving food stamps more than doubled nationally. Part of this increase is due to a federal rule that allowed states to waive food stamps’ modest work requirement. However, states such as Kansas and Maine chose to reinstate work requirements. Comparing and contrasting the two approaches provides powerful new evidence about the effectiveness of work.
According to a report from the Foundation for Government Accountability, before Kansas instituted a work requirement, 93 percent of food stamp recipients were in poverty, with 84 percent in severe poverty. Few of the food stamp recipients claimed any income. Only 21 percent were working at all, and two-fifths of those working were working fewer than 20 hours per week.
Once work requirements were established, thousands of food stamp recipients moved into the workforce, promoting income gains and a decrease in poverty. Forty percent of the individuals who left the food stamp ranks found employment within three months, and about 60 percent found employment within a year. They saw an average income increase of 127 percent. Half of those who left the rolls and are working have earnings above the poverty level. Even many of those who stayed on food stamps saw their income increase significantly.
Work programs provide opportunities such as job training and employment search services. For example, in Kansas, workfare helped one man, who was unemployed for four years and on food stamps, find employment in the publishing industry where he now earns $45,000 annually. Another Kansan who was also previously unemployed and dependent on food stamps for over three years, now has an annual income of $34,000.
Furthermore, with the implementation of the work requirement in Kansas, the caseload dropped by 75 percent. Previously, Kansas was spending $5.5 million per month on food stamp benefits for able-bodied adults; it now spends $1.2 million.
So, I am doing a hunt to find the best states to live in, and Kansas is in my top 5. They have Governor Sam Brownback, and he has just done a magnificent job pushing conservative policies – not just social policies, but fiscal too. It’s a great state, but still edged out by Oklahoma and Tennessee, in my opinion. We’ll see what else Governor Brownback has in store, though.
You might think that all the news is bad, and that no one is putting into place any conservative policies. Well, of course the good red states are putting in these policies, and of course these policies are achieving the desired objectives. If you elect Democrats, you get Detroit. If you elect Republicans, you get welfare reform that lifts people out of dependency and into earned success. I’m sure that they feel better about not being dependent, too.
For the rest of Easter weekend, I have scheduled 5 posts on the resurrection. But this post is all about the wonderful pro-life legislation that our Republican governors and legislatures are enacting into law in red states.
Let’s start with something from last month, with Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin.
Kentucky governor Matt Bevin promised to make pro-life issues a top priority, and Tuesday he made good on his promise.
Matt Bevin signed an informed consent bill requiring that biological facts and medical information be given to mothers in person or by real-time video at least 24 hours before an abortion.
“The overwhelming support for Senate Bill 4 in the Kentucky legislature is a positive step toward protecting the emotional and physical health and safety of women,” Bevin said in a statement before signing the bill.
Bill supporters say the reason the bill was necessary is because many abortionists circumvent the law by having mothers listen to a prerecorded message over the phone.
[…]Gov. Bevin chose this as the very first bill he signed into law. He put his signature to it as soon as legislators delivered it to him. The bill informing mothers of the medical and biological facts related to gestation and abortion becomes the Bluegrass State’s first new pro-life law in twelve years.
Pro-life legislation was previously roadblocked by the Democrat-controlled state House.
Here’s one from earlier this month, from South Dakota Governor Dennis Gaugaard.
South Dakota just became the next state to protect unborn babies from painful, late-term abortions.
On Thursday, Gov. Dennis Gaugaard signed into law a bill to ban abortions after 20 weeks and penalize doctors who do late-term abortions in non-emergency situations, the Argus Leader reports. Penalties for violations of the law include up to a year in jail and a $2,000 fine, according to the report. The only exceptions would be in certain medical emergency cases, the report states.
[…]The state House passed the pro-life measure last week, LifeNews reported.
South Dakota has one abortion clinic left, a Planned Parenthood in Sioux Falls that does abortions up to 14 weeks; however, the new bill would ensure that later abortions will not be done in the future in the state. More than 18,000 very late-term abortions are performed every year on perfectly healthy unborn babies in America.
[…]The bill is modeled after the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which has become law in 12 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Texas, West Virginia and Wisconsin.
The next one is from Indiana, where pro-life Governor Mike Pence signed a pro-life bill into law this week. This bill will prevent abortions of babies who are the “wrong sex”, the “wrong race”, or who have disabilities such as Down syndrome.
Indiana has become the second state in the nation, following North Dakota, to ban abortions on babies who are diagnosed in the womb as having Down syndrome. Gov. Mike Pence signed the bill today to protect unborn babies from being aborted simply because of a disability, race or sex.
Pence signed House Bill 1337, which would ban abortion doctors from knowingly aborting an unborn baby solely because of a genetic disability such as Down syndrome, the unborn baby’s race or sex. The bill also has several other abortion-related measures, including a requirement that aborted or miscarried babies’ bodies be cremated or buried and another requirement that abortionists who have hospital admitting privileges renew them annually. The burial/cremation requirement backs up a law passed in 2015 by Gov. Pence requiring that aborted babies’ bodies be disposed of in a humane way.
“Throughout my public career, I have stood for the sanctity of life. HEA 1337 is a comprehensive pro-life measure that affirms the value of all human life, which is why I signed it into law today,” Governor Pence said in a statement.
Pence continued: “I believe that a society can be judged by how it deals with its most vulnerable—the aged, the infirm, the disabled and the unborn. HEA 1337 will ensure the dignified final treatment of the unborn and prohibits abortions that are based only on the unborn child’s sex, race, color, national origin, ancestry, or disability, including Down syndrome.”
The next one concerns Arizona, where pro-life Governor Doug Ducey is set to sign three pro-life bills into law.
Three pro-life bills are on their way through the Arizona legislature and soon could be on Gov. Doug Ducey’s desk.
On Wednesday, the Arizona House gave preliminary approval to the bills, and a final vote is expected on Thursday, according to the Arizona Daily Star. The bills, already passed in the state Senate, would regulate the use of dangerous chemical abortion drugs, ban the trafficking of aborted babies’ body parts and remove abortion groups from the state employee charitable giving program.
Specifically, state Senate Bill 1324 would ban dangerous chemical abortions after the seventh week of pregnancy, as the drug label recommends. Abortion clinics often use the chemical abortion drug regimen RU-486 later in pregnancy and give smaller doses than recommended, likely in an effort to save money.
[…]The second bill, state Senate Bill 1474, would end the inhumane treatment of aborted babies’ bodies by abortion clinics and research facilities. Arizona state Sen. Nancy Barto, R-Phoenix, introduced the bill earlier this year, saying she was “shocked” by the undercover videos by the Center for Medical Progress showing top Planned Parenthood officials selling aborted babies’ body parts.
[…]The final bill, Arizona Senate Bill 1485, would ban abortion groups from the state employee charitable giving program. The ban is a continuation of a move last year by Gov. Ducey to kick out Planned Parenthood from the program.
[…]State legislators in the Senate also are considering a separate bill that would make it easier to defund the Planned Parenthood abortion business.
The fourth story is about South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, who recently endorsed Ted Cruz for President.
South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, who is openly pro-life, will sign a bill into law that would ban killing babies in the womb after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
The bill, titled the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, was already passed by the South Dakota legislature on March 9; it has already been made law in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Texas, West Virginia and Wisconsin. Nebraska was the first state to pass the law, in 2010.
Last September, Senate Democrats blocked the Senate’s version of the bill, as the vote was in favor, 54-42, but fell short of a 60-vote sum that would have prevented a filibuster. Ted Cruz voted for the bill while Bernie Sanders opposed the bill; Hillary Clinton has opposed the measure.
[…]In 2012, Haley signed the Opt Out of Abortion Act and the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act. The Born-Alive Infant Protection Act would protect unborn children who are born alive after a failed abortion but would be left to die afterward.
And finally, for those who like some religious liberty along with their defending the lives of unborn children, Campus Reform reports that Kansas Governor Sam Brownback signed into law a bill to protect the religious liberty of student groups on public university campuses.
This good news story of the day is from Life News.
The state of Kansas has been a haven for late-term abortions for decades and pro-life advocates there successfully lobbied the legislature to approve new legislation that would help put an end to some of them.
In a move that it tells LifeNews.com will transform the landscape of abortion policy in the United States, National Right to Life announced a major new component of the right to life movement’s 2015 legislative agenda with introduction in Kansas of the Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act. The pro-life group says the wave of pro-life victories in the 2014 election helped set the stage for this first-of-its-kind legislation, which would protect unborn children from the brutality of dismemberment abortion.
“Dismemberment abortion kills a baby by tearing her apart limb from limb,” said National Right to Life Director of State Legislation Mary Spaulding Balch, J.D. “Before the first trimester ends, the unborn child has a beating heart, brain waves, and every organ system in place. Dismemberment abortions occur after the baby has reached these milestones.”
Now, Kansas has approved the bill.
This morning by a voice vote, the Kansas House gave first round approval to landmark pro-life legislation, Senate Bill 95,”The Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act.”
Kansans for Life Executive Director, Mary Kay Culp, thanked legislators for their diligence in tackling the issue, and enacting a sound law crafted to withstand constitutional scrutimy, that will stop a horrific procedure.
“With the introduction of the bill by lead sponsor, Sen. Garrett Love (R-Montezuma), and 24 Senate co-sponsors, the bill generated immediate grass-roots support and passed the Kansas Senate, 31-9. After a final vote in the House, (possibly later today), SB 95 will head to Gov. Sam Brownback, who has promised his signature,” Culp said.
Culp explained that SB 95 bans a particularly gruesome abortion method in which a living unborn child in her mother’s womb is ripped apart by an abortionist using sharp metal tools. In the words of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, the unborn child, “dies just as a human adult or child would: It bleeds to death as it is torn limb from limb.”[Stenberg v. Carhart, 530 U.S. 914, 958-959].
The bill was carried on the House floor by Rep. Steve Brunk (R-Wichita), with assistance on legal areas by former judge, Rep. John Rubin (R-Shawnee) – both pro-life leaders in the House.
This is not the first time that Kansas governor Sam Brownback has come through for pro-lifers.
As you might expect, abortions are down in Kansas.
I am a 3-point conservative, not just a social conservative. It really matters to me that a politician support fiscal conservatism and foreign policy conservatism as well. I never used to like Sam Brownback much because he used to be more fiscally liberal. But that all changed when he became governor of Kansas and turned into this tax-cutting machine – and he’s cutting government spending, too. Now I can’t find a thing wrong with him. He saves unborn babies and returns money to taxpayers, so they can afford to get married and to raise children. Families need the money more than government does.
I think if you’re going to make a Democrat cry, it makes sense to make them cry a lot. So why not do all the things that they don’t want you to do?
First North Dakota has passed a ban on abortions after 20 weeks.
On Tuesday, North Dakota’s governor signed a bill into law banning abortions after 20 weeks, when an unborn baby begins to feel pain. This comes just one month after he signed landmark pro-life legislation making it the first state to prohibit both sex-selection abortions and abortions for genetic abnormalities.
[…]Senators voted 30-17 to ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy based on scientific information showing unborn children feel pain at least at that point in pregnancy.
The 20-week abortion ban is thought to fit within the current framework of the pro-abortion Supreme Court and stand up in court to a lawsuit from abortion proponents.
[…]Alabama, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska and Oklahoma have passed such legislation.
[…]The science behind the concept of fetal pain is fully established and Dr. Steven Zielinski, an internal medicine physician from Oregon, is one of the leading researchers into it. He first published reports in the 1980s to validate research showing evidence for it.
He has testified before Congress that an unborn child could feel pain at “eight-and-a-half weeks and possibly earlier” and that a baby before birth “under the right circumstances, is capable of crying.”
He and his colleagues Dr. Vincent J. Collins and Thomas J. Marzen were the top researchers to point to fetal pain decades ago. Collins, before his death, was Professor of Anesthesiology at Northwestern University and the University of Illinois and author of Principles of Anesthesiology, one of the leading medical texts on the control of pain.
See, what I like here is that we have pro-life scientists who are researching this in order to provide us with facts that back policies that the majority of people will support.
That’s good news, and here is more good news from Kansas.
This morning, Governor Sam Brownback signed HB 2253, the Pro-life Protections Act, into law.
HB 2253 codifies abortion informed consent materials authorized by the state health department, and removes all tax streams that pay for abortion and give tax advantages to abortion businesses.
The informed consent section has an added mandate for the state health department to facilitate medical information access and community support for families facing pre-birth and post-birth diagnoses of Down Syndrome and other conditions.
HB 2253 assures taxpayers are not directly funding abortion or abortion training at the state university, and forbids state discrimination against pro-life citizens and entities. The legislation also includes SB 141, the ban on abortions done solely for the gender of the unborn child.
Naturally, these advances are not going to please people who think that the strong should be able to deprive the weak of basic human rights, but they are in the minority. At least they are in conservative states like North Dakota and Kansas.
Republicans picked up 680 seats in state legislatures, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures — an all time high. To put that number in perspective: In the 1994 GOP wave, Republicans picked up 472 seats. The previous record was in the post-Watergate election of 1974, when Democrats picked up 628 seats.
The GOP gained majorities in at least 14 state house chambers. They now have unified control — meaning both chambers — of 26 state legislatures.
That control is a particularly bad sign for Democrats as they go into the redistricting process. If the GOP is effective in gerrymandering districts in many of these states, it could eventually lead to the GOP actually expanding its majority in 2012.
Republicans now hold the redistricting “trifecta” — both chambers of the state legislature and the governorship — in 15 states. They also control the Nebraska governorship and the unicameral legislature, taking the number up to 16. And in North Carolina — probably the state most gerrymandered to benefit Democrats — Republicans hold both chambers of the state legislature and the Democratic governor does not have veto power over redistricting proposal…
In Michigan, Republican businessman Rick Snyder, who vowed to turn around the state’s devastated economy, defeated Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero, a Democrat.
In Ohio, another closely watched race, and one of the fiercest, Republican John Kasich, a former chairman of the House Budget Committee, defeated Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland.
In New Mexico, Republican Susana Martinez became the first Hispanic woman to become a state’s chief executive.
In Oklahoma, U.S. Rep. Mary Fallin, a Republican, became the state’s first female governor. She defeated Democratic Lt. Gov. Jari Askins to replace term-limited Democratic Gov. Brad Henry.
In Tennessee, Republican Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam defeated Democratic businessman Mike McWherter to win the state’s open governorship.
In Kansas, conservative Republican Sen. Sam Brownback defeated Democratic state Sen. Tom Holland to win the governorship. Democrat Kathleen Sebelius was elected in 2002 and again in 2006 before joining Obama’s Cabinet as secretary of health and human services. Lt. Gov. Mark Parkinson replaced Sebelius but did not run for a full term.
In Wyoming, former U.S. attorney Matt Mead, the Republican nominee, defeated former state Democratic chairwoman Leslie Petersen. And Republican Utah Gov. Gary Herbert won another two years in office.
A Tea Party-backed South Carolina Republican, state Rep. Nikki Haley, was elected to replace term-limited Republican Gov. Mark Sanford. Haley won over state Sen. Vincent Sheheen.
In a high-profile race for which both parties spent millions, Texas Republican Gov. Rick Perry, who has already served 10 years, defeated Democrat Bill White, a former mayor of Houston.
South Dakota’s Republican lieutenant governor, Dennis Daugaard, defeated Democratic challenger Scott Heidepriem to succeed term-limited Gov. Mike Rounds, keeping the seat in GOP hands. Alabama also remained in the Republican column as state Rep. Robert Bentley defeated Democratic nominee Ron Sparks. Republican Gov. Bob Riley is term-limited.
In Nebraska, Republican Gov. Dave Heineman was easily re-elected over the Democratic candidate, lawyer Mike Meister.
It was a landslide. The worst defeat the Democrats have ever endured. I am a big admirer of Mary Fallin, by the way. She is ultra-conservative. She is the third of the trifecta of female Republican governors. These are very conservative women – excellent choices for the Republican party, and possible future Presidents!
When Governor Christie set his sights on reducing the size of government and the debt in the Garden State, he is keeping that promise.
The governor announced that beginning January, he’ll cut 1,200 state jobs saving New Jersey taxpayers $8.8 million. The job cuts will include layoffs and attrition.
So why January you may ask?
Previous liberal tax and spend governor, Jon Corzine created a deal with his buddies in the state’s unions to prevent Christie from cutting these jobs before leaving office. The deal prevented these lay offs until January 2011.
Christie said the layoffs are needed to balance the state’s $29.4 billion budget. This is the type of fiscal conservatism that has made Governor Christie a rock star in the Republican party.
That’s what they were elected to do, and they’ll do it.