Your Inside View to the Strategies and Activities of the Conservative Movement in Washington

Issue 167 * June 20, 1997

The National Center for Public Policy Research
Amy Moritz Ridenour, President
300 Eye Street N.E. Suite 3 * Washington, D.C. 20001
(202) 507-6398 * Fax (301) 498-1301
E-Mail: [email protected]

Activities at the June 18 & 11 Wednesday Strategy Lunches chaired by Paul Weyrich of the Free Congress Foundation.

"War Room" Campaign Targets Legal Services Corporation

Peter Flaherty of Citizens for Reform discussed his group's efforts to eliminate funding the Legal Services Corporation, the federal legal assistance program for the poor that is used by left to advance their political agenda. The group has targeted key lawmakers for grassroots pressure and will be conducting a daily campaign to eliminate LSC funding through the end of the budget process. A "war room" to manage the effort has been set up. Flaherty has available extensive information about the LSC's extreme abuses of taxpayer monies, including the book Harvest of Injustice: Legal Services Vs. the Farmer, written by Rael Jean Isaac and published in 1996 by the National Legal and Policy Center. Contact Peter Flaherty at 703/748-1548.

Republican Lawmaker Introduces Measure to Protect Constitutional Rights Against Treaties

Rep. Helen Chenoweth (R-ID) discussed her recently introduced constitutional amendment aimed at restoring the Constitution as the supreme law of the land. Recent court decisions have held that treaties and executive agreements arranged by the president are binding on the American people and supersede the Constitution. Chenoweth's amendment guarantees that "No treaty shall authorize or permit any foreign power or any international organization to supervise, control or adjudicate rights of citizens of the United States enumerated in this Constitution or any other matter essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of the United States or the several States." Contact Chad Hyslop at 202/225-6611.

Merits of MFN for People's Republic of China Debated

Kevin Kearns of the U.S. Business and Industrial Council, Jeffrey Bell of the office of Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), Frank Gaffney of the Center for National Security Policy, House Majority Whip Tom DeLay (R-TX) and others discussed MFN status for China.

Kearns distributed "Made in China?: President Clinton's Failed Trade Policies Toward the People's Republic" and offered several reasons for opposing MFN renewal for the PRC: 1) China imports fewer U.S. products than Belgium or Holland; 2) The U.S. has a $40 billion trade deficit with China, and since the Tianamen Square massacre, U.S. imports of Chinese products has grown 600% but PRC imports of U.S. products has only grown 130%; 3) PRC products entering the U.S. face a 2-6% tariff while U.S. products entering China face 40% tariffs.

Jeffrey Bell made the following points: 1) Declining to renew MFN for China would not severely affect relations between the two nations; 2) Clear evidence exists of Chinese government persecution of Christians, although the U.S. media fails to report this fact; 3) The view that economic growth in China will bring political freedom in China is overstated, although political movements with religious overtones often foster democracy.

Gaffney distributed an op/ed he wrote "Why China's MFN Should Be Undone" for the June 10 Washington Times. The article addresses the national security elements he believes the U.S. should consider as reasons for not renewing MFN.

DeLay said that he views MFN renewal as a freedom issue, believing that Americans should not have their right to sell good restricted. He did agree, however, with MFN opponents that there should be more than one hour of debate on the topic (as there was last year). Marlo Lewis of the Competitive Enterprise Institute and several others present supported DeLay's position, some saying that the U.S. should end economic aid to China, not MFN status.

Contact Kevin Kearns at 202/628-2212, Jeff Bell at 202/225-3765, Frank Gaffney at 202/466-0515, Rep. DeLay at 202/225-0197 and Marlo Lewis at 202/331-1010.

Uncle Sam May Be Watching You On the Internet

Jim Lucier of Americans for Tax Reform discussed and distributed information about the encryption issue. According to Lucier, federal agencies now seek the capability to filter all message traffic on the Internet and other public networks and to examine content of interest to them. Lucier said that his group finds what it terms the "repeated insistence" by the Clinton Administration that it must be able to read everyone's e-mail in real time while it is actually transmitted "inexplicable and alarming." Contact Jim Lucier at 202/785-0266 or [email protected]

New Approach to Taming Federal Deficit Proposed

Rep. Mark Neumann (R-WI) described his new legislation, the "National Debt Repayment Act of 1997," which would cap federal government spending increases at a rate 1% less than the rate revenue increases. It also would designate that future federal surpluses be divided between the Social Security Trust Fund, other government trust funds and tax cuts. Contact Rep. Neumann at 202/225-3031 or [email protected]

Burton Staff Describes White House Probe Delay Tactics

John Williams of the staff of Rep. Dan Burton (R-ID) briefed participants on the status of the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee's investigation into White House shenanigans. He distributed a detailed information packet and spoke at length about the Administration's extensive use of stalling tactics to delay the probe. Contact John Williams at 202/225-2276.

Congressional Press Conference Calls for Impeachment Inquiry

Chip Walker of the staff of Rep. Bob Barr (R-GA) distributed information about a press conference the Congressman has scheduled for June 18 at which Rep. Barr will call for an inquiry of impeachment against the president and vice president. Contact Chip Walker at 202/225-2931 or [email protected]

Politically Correct Arms Control: Effort Underway to Ban Landmines

Despite the objections of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, an effort is now underway by the Princess of Wales, the Red Cross, and Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) to ban the production, stockpiling, or use of anti-personnel landmines. Frank Gaffney of the Center for Security Policy discussed how the measure, if enacted, would affect American troops: "...Recent studies by the Army indicate that American casualties will increase by some thirty percent if U.S. land forces are obliged to fight without the use of landmines." Gaffney noted that the effort to ban the devices, normally used by American troops for defensive purposes, would only be honored by western forces, while being ignored by rogue states. Contact Frank Gaffney at 202/466-0515.

Picture This: National Endowment for the Arts Moves One Step Closer to Shutdown

Brian Lopina of the Christian Coalition discussed a June 17 move by the Interior Subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee to eliminate funding for the National Endowment for the Arts, except for roughly $10 million in closedown costs. A move is expected in the full committee to restore funding for the agency, which has been embroiled in controversy for the funding of obscene and objectionable projects. Contact Brian Lopina at 202/547-3600. *

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. ###

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