Your Inside View to the Strategies and Activities
of the Conservative Movement in Washington
Issue 153 * February 20, 1997
The National Center for Public Policy Research
20 F Street NW, Suite 700 Washington, D.C. 20001
Fax (301) 498-1301
E-Mail: [email protected]
The Conservative Action Team (CATs), a group of nearly 70 conservative House Republicans, has Congressmen available for media interviews on a list of 17 legislative priorities CATs has adopted in order to "drive a conservative agenda" in the 105th Congress. "CATs plans to spend the next two years on the offensive," says Rep. John T. Doolittle (R-CA), who co-chairs the group with Rep. Sam Johnson (R-TX), Rep. Ernest Istook (R-OK) and Rep. Dan Burton (R-IN). "Rather than react to what the Clinton Administration and others are doing, we are going to press ahead with a conservative agenda that reduces the size and cost of government and increases individual freedom." Among the 17 specific planks adopted by CATS in its "Conservative Agenda for the 105th Congress" are: balancing the budget by controlling federal spending; enacting legislation to protect individuals from having their money involuntarily collected and used by a corporation or labor organization for political purposes; enacting a $500-per-child tax credit, abolishing the federal estate tax, cutting the capital gains tax rate and providing marriage penalty relief; ending all funding for the National Endowment for the Arts and the Legal Services Corporation; passing the partial birth abortion ban; eliminating federally-mandated race and gender preferences; prohibiting U.N. or foreign command of U.S. troops. Media contact is Jennifer Larkin at 202/225-3927.
Writing in the February 12 Wall Street Journal, Journal deputy features editor Max Boot has analyzed how "well-intentioned discrimination law has degenerated into a shakedown scheme to enrich a handful of lawyers." The case Boot writes about is Butler v. Home Depot. In this case, plaintiffs lawyers have assembled "enough plaintiffs to fill Yankee stadium three times over" to sue Home Depot because "about 70% of the company's merchandizing personnel, who sell lumber, electrical supplies, hardware, etc. are male" while "about 70% of the operations personnel -- primarily cashiers but also accountants and other back-office employees -- are female." Boot explains why it is almost impossible for Home Deport to win the case, despite a lack of evidence of any intentional discrimination on their part.
Shepherd Smith of Americans for a Sound AIDS/HIV Policy discussed his visit with the head of the Centers for Disease Control, Dr. David Sacher, with Rep. Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK), and Dr. Joe S. McIlhaney, Jr. M.D., head of the Texas-based Medical Institute for Sexual Health. The group discussed the pros and cons of various ways to protect young people from disease, including needle exchange programs, Elaine Bennett's "Best Friends" teen abstinence program, and programs which combine abstinence education with condom distribution. "There is an overemphasis right now [in the government] on tobacco as a risk factor for young people," said Smith. "We need to talk about drugs; we need to talk about sexual activity." Contact Shepherd Smith at 703/471-7350.
Derrick Max of the House Education and Workforce Committee staff discussed a subcommittee investigation to find out how the National Endowment for the Arts is using its federal dollars and how well it is meeting the goals set for it by Congress (getting art outside the major cities and encouraging excellence in art) when the NEA was established. The review is mandated by Congress every ten years, said Max, yet hasn't taken place for 15 years. Max said that the subcommittee is currently concerned about several things, including concerns that NEA financial controls are weak, that the NEA tends to fund projects in major cities (1/3 of Congressional districts get zero funding, and Democratic districts receive funding by 3-1 over GOP districts), and the NEA continues to fund obscene material. Max noted that the NEA funded 800 movies, 100 of which were offensive, and some of which dealt with child "sexuality." The NEA claimed that it did not fund the movies, but when the committee looked at financial source documents, it found that it had. Contact Derrick Max at 202/225-7101.
Colleen Pinyon of the Rutherford Institute discussed five cases the U.S. Supreme Court is hearing on religious freedom, parental rights, assisted suicide and abortion. Contact Colleen Pinyon at 202/393-7008 (http://rutherford.org).
Cliff Kincaid of American Sovereignty Action Project discussed
the U.S.-U.N. debt issue, saying in part: "If anybody wants
to know why the Republican Party is known as the stupid party,
they only need look at the U.N. Under the cover of a phony debt
to the U.N. they are preparing a bailout of the U.N... The allegation
that we owe money to the U.N. has been repeated so many times
we believe it... what they don't tell you is the Clinton Administration
has been taking [funds and supplies] from various U.S. government
agencies, partly the Pentagon, and spending it on U.N. operations."
Kincaid said that of $6.6 billion spent in recent years by the
U.S. on U.N. operations only $1.8 billion has been counted against
U.N. dues and assessments and $79.4 million has been reimbursed
by the U.N. "So," said Kincaid, "the U.N. owes
the U.S. about $3.5 billion. There is no reason why the Congress
should not insist that we be repaid." Kincaid said his cited
figures were from a GAO report of March 6, 1997, "Peace Operations:
U.S. Costs in Support of Haiti, former Yugoslavia, and Rwanda,"
available from the GAO at 202/512-6000. Kincaid added that U.S.
dues are based upon the U.S. paying 25% of the U.N.'s budget,
a figure that, he said, dates from the 1940s and should be changed
to reflect current world realities. He also noted that the U.N.
presently has over 1,000 staff members working on public relations.
Contact Cliff Kincaid at 703/352-4788. *
Scoop is published by The National Center for Public Policy Research to provide information about the activities of the conservative movement. Coverage of a meeting or statement in Scoop does not imply endorsement by The National Center for Public Policy Research. Copyright 1997 The National Center for Public Policy Research. Reprints of articles in Scoop permitted provided source is credited. ###