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J. ROSS MACBETH ATTORNEY AT LAW LAKEVIEW PROFESSIONAL Bldg. 2543 U.S. Highway 27 South . Sebring, Florida 33870-2125 Bus: (863) 385-7600 . Fax: (863) 385-7911 ross@macbethlaw.com

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Highlands County Republican July Meeting Summary

Tuesday, July 18th, 2017

We had a near record crowd for a July meeting of Highlands County Republicans last Thursday evening July 13th.  Chairman Kathy Rapp led a planning session to organize members and volunteers to effectively support Project Majority Red, the statewide RPOF initiative to complete the effort to register new Republican voters and turn Florida to majority Republican.

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Chairman Rapp reminded all that we have some extremely important elections coming in 2018 and Florida is a “closed primary state”.  Voters will not be able to vote in the upcoming primary elections for the best Republican candidate  for Governor, for Florida Cabinet members including Commissioner of Agriculture, or for US Senator unless they are registered Republican.

Highlands County Republicans also welcomed four new members that joined the Highlands County Republican Executive Committee Thursday evening!  Pictured left to right are, Judi Bentley, Bobby Lee, Betty Gwinn, and Joe Gwinn.   Please join us in welcoming our newest Highlands County Republican Precinct Committeewomen and Precinct Committeemen.  We have openings in most precincts for additional members.  For information on becoming a member of the HCREC, see our website at http://www.highlandscounty.gop/hcrec

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State Committeeman Earl Claire shared a list of important actions to assist efforts in Highlands County:

  • Voter registration! Republicans won Florida by a mere 119,000 votes last November and in so doing helped save the nation! During the last election, we reduced the Dem voter registration majority by 200,000 votes and that change and having excellent candidates were instrumental in carrying Florida.  We need everyone to be involved in encouraging family and friends to leave the party that has long-since left them and encourage them to register Republican.  If we can turn Florida to majority red in the next 15 months, we will have a high probability of maintaining a Republican led state!
  • Social media outreach and reinforcement and sharing of conservative posts. Post constructive conservative comments on posts of interest to counter the non-stop negative posts by the liberals
  • Support for Highlands County candidates. Recruitment and support of new candidates for openings
  • Recruitment of new members for the HCREC.   Think what a positive force we could be if all our openings were filled!
  • Education of family and friends, neighbors and co-workers. All are constantly barraged with anti-administration and anti-conservative fake news and propaganda.  You can provide invaluable assistance by sharing real news and constructive conservative news analysis and commentary.

Additionally, it is important to remind all of Republican positions on issues:  “I am a Republican Because…

  • I believe the strength of our nation lies with the individual and that each person’s dignity, freedom, ability and  responsibility must be honored.
  • I believe in equal rights, equal justice and equal opportunity for all, regardless of race, creed, sex, age or disability.
  • I believe free enterprise and encouraging individual initiative have brought this nation opportunity, economic growth and prosperity.
  • I believe government must practice fiscal responsibility and allow individuals to keep more of the money they earn.
  • I believe the proper role of government is to provide for the people only those critical functions that cannot be performed by individuals or private organizations and that the best government is that which governs the least.
  • I believe the most effective, responsible and responsive government is the government closest to the people.
  • I believe Americans must retain the principles that have made us strong while developing new and innovative ideas to meet the challenges of changing times.
  • I believe Americans value and should preserve our national strength and pride while working to extend peace, freedom, and human rights throughout the world.”

Upcoming meetings of interest include:

  • June 24, 2017 at 6 pm at HCREC Headquarters – Pizza and Possibilities for Action, RSVP required to Kathy Rapp at 863 381-1390
  • June 26, 2017 at 11:30 am Sebring Chamber of Commerce sponsored Legislative Update at Island View Restaurant at Sun ‘n Lakes in Sebring.  RSVP required to Sebring Chamber of Commerce (863) 385-8448 .
  • August 10, 2017 at 6:30 pm – Highlands County Republican monthly meeting at the Inn on the Lakes (dinner from menu can be ordered in the Conference Room from 5- 6:15 pm)
  • August 11-12, 2017 RPOF Quarterly Meetings in Orlando at the Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel beginning at 9 am on Aug 11 (all are welcome and invited)  For additional info on how to register and to obtain the agenda, contact Earl Claire (ejclaire@comcast.net)

From the Daily Signal – How One Man Helped Propel the American Revolution

Monday, July 3rd, 2017

John Adams, the nation’s second president, played an indispensable role in moving the 13 colonies toward independence. (Photo: Pictures From History/Newscom)

That the brilliant wordsmith Thomas Jefferson was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence is indisputable, but a lesser-known fact is that the man who played the indispensable role in its adoption by the Continental Congress in July 1776 was John Adams of Massachusetts, our second president.

Jefferson later confirmed Adams’ role as the tireless “floor manager” of the declaration:

No man better merited than Mr. John Adams to hold a most conspicuous place in the design. He was the pillar of its support on the floor of Congress, its ablest advocate and defender against the multifarious assaults encountered.

As historian David McCullough has written, tension in the congressional debate was heightened by the sighting of a hundred British ships off New York, the first arrivals of a fleet that would number over 400. So serious a step as independence warranted unanimity among the colonies, but Delaware and Pennsylvania remained question marks.

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Just as the doors of Congress were about to be closed, Caesar Rodney of Delaware arrived, “booted and spurred.” Although suffering from skin cancer, Rodney had ridden 80 miles through the night, changing horses several times, to cast his “aye” vote for independence.

More important to the cause, McCullough writes, were two empty chairs in the Pennsylvania delegation. Unwilling to vote for independence, but acknowledging the need for Congress to be unanimous, John Dickinson and Robert Morris “had voluntarily absented themselves from the proceedings,” placing Pennsylvania behind independence by the narrow margin of 3-2.

On the final day of debate, when adoption of the declaration by all 13 colonies was still in doubt, Adams rose to speak “with a power of thought and expression,” Jefferson wrote, “that moved us from our seats.”

To Richard Stockton, a new delegate from New Jersey, Adams was “the atlas” of the hour, “the man to whom the country is most indebted for the great measure of independency.”

Today, some 241 years later, we remain awed by the courage of the delegates assembled in Philadelphia who declared their independence from England, then the most powerful nation in the world, and pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor to a new nation—the United States of America.

While Jefferson himself penned the Declaration of Independence, it was Adams more than anyone else who was responsible for its adoption. He more than any other delegate understood how consequential the declaration would be, writing to his beloved wife Abigail:

The second day of July 1776 will be the most memorable epocha in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival.

It ought to be commemorated as the Day of Deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other from this time forward forever more.

So, let the illuminations begin!

 

For the rest of this article and others, see:  http://dailysignal.com/2017/07/03/one-man-helped-propel-american-revolution/

From Townhall – A Guide to Basic Differences Between Left and Right

Saturday, July 1st, 2017

img_0530  A must read and share reminder as the 4th of July weekend begins. Recent reports show that 51% of Democrats now identify with atheistic socialism. We are in a war for the minds of our youth. America will never be conquered by a foreign nation. Our greatest threat is the enemy within! The left is now attacking patriotism.  Is the left even on America’s side anymore?

From Townhall – A Guide to Basic Differences Between Left and Right

Dennis Prager

1/17/2017 12:01:00 AM – Dennis Prager

Source of Human Rights

Left: government

Right: the Creator

Human Nature

Left: basically good (Therefore, society is primarily responsible for evil.)

Right: not basically good (Therefore, the individual is primarily responsible for evil.)

Economic Goal

Left: equality

Right: prosperity

Primary Role of the State

Left: increase and protect equality

Right: increase and protect liberty

Government

Left: as large as possible

Right: as small as possible

Family Ideal

Left: any loving unit of people

Right: a married father and mother, and children

Guiding Trinity

Left: race, gender and class

Right: liberty, In God We Trust and e pluribus unum

Good and Evil

Left: relative to individual and/or society

Right: based on universal absolutes

Humanity’s Primary Division(s)

Left: rich and poor; strong and weak

Right: good and evil

Ideal Primary Identity of an American

Left: world citizen

Right: American citizen

How to Make a Good Society

Left: abolish inequality

Right: develop each citizen’s moral character

View of America

Left: profoundly morally flawed; inferior to any number of European countries

Right: greatest force for good among nations in world history

Gender

Left: a social construct

Right: male and female

Most Important Trait to Cultivate in a Child

Left: self-esteem

Right: self-control

Worth of the Human Fetus

Left: determined by the mother

Right: determined by society rooted in Judeo-Christian values

Primary Source of Crime

Left: poverty, racism and other societal flaws

Right: the criminal’s malfunctioning conscience

Place of God and Religion in America

Left: secular government and secular society

Right: secular government and religious society

American Exceptionalism

Left: chauvinistic doctrine

Right: historical reality

Greatest Threat to the World

Left: environmental catastrophe (currently global warming)

Right: evil (currently radical Islamist violence)

International Ideal

Left: world governed by the United Nations, and no single country is dominant

Right: world in which America is the single strongest entity

Primary Reason for Lack of Peace in Middle East

Left: Israeli settlements in the West Bank

Right: Palestinian, Arab and Muslim denial of Jewish state’s right to exist

Purpose of Art

Left: challenge status quo and bourgeois sensibilities

Right: produce works of beauty and profundity to elevate the individual and society

Guns

Left: ideally universally abolished, except for use by police, the armed forces and registered sportsmen

Right: ideally widely owned by responsible individuals for self-protection and the protection of others

Race

Left: intrinsically significant

Right: intrinsically insignificant

Racial, Ethnic and Gender Diversity at Universities

Left: most important

Right: far less important than ideological diversity

Black America’s Primary Problem

Left: racism

Right: lack of fathers

Greatest Playwright

Left: entirely subjective; there is no greatest playwright

Right: Shakespeare

War

Left: not the answer

Right: sometimes the only answer

Hate

Left: wrong, except when directed at the political

Right: wrong, except when directed at evil

Cultures

Left: all equal

Right: some are better than others

America’s Founding Fathers

Left: rich white male slave owners

Right: great men who founded the greatest society

Purpose of Judges

Left: pursue social justice

Right: pursue justice

National Borders

Left: a relic of the past

Right: indispensable for national survival

View of Illegal Immigrants

Left: welcomed guests

Right: illegal immigrants

For the rest of this article and others, see: https://townhall.com/columnists/dennisprager/2017/01/17/a-guide-to-basic-differences-between-left-and-right-n2271475

 

From The Daily Signal – Just a Common Soldier: A Moving Tribute for Memorial Day

Sunday, May 28th, 2017

ICYMI – A Repeat of a Classic for this Memorial Day

For many years, Stephen Clouse has made videos designed to inspire donations to worthy causes. Recently, he made a different kind of video. It’s not designed to solicit donations but to honor those who have given so much for our country.

In this video, veteran Hollywood actor Tony Lo Bianco reads a poem called “Just a Common Soldier.” It’s a moving tribute to the soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen who have served our country. As Tony reads the poem, viewers are treated to emotional images of our honored vets. As they were on the battlefield; and as they are now.

Clouse is asking Americans to share the video with their followers on Facebook and other social media channels such as YouTube and Twitter. The goal is to get 21 million “likes”—that’s one for every one of the estimated 21 million living veterans—between Memorial Day on May 25 and Veteran’s Day on Nov. 11.

For the rest of this article and other great articles, see: http://dailysignal.com/2015/05/22/just-a-common-soldier-a-moving-tribute-for-memorial-day/

Pictures from the Republican Round-Up Victory Party Thursday Evening at the Sebring Civic Center

Monday, May 15th, 2017

The Republican Round-Up Victory Party at the Sebring Civic Center Thursday evening was a huge success! Highlands County Republican Chairman Kathy Rapp welcomed the record crowd who came out to celebrate the clean-sweep Republican victories last November and to provide the much-needed financial support to keep on winning in 2018. Father Nicholas McLoughlin, Pastor of Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church, provided the invocation.  The Pledge of Allegiance was led by Commissioner Jack Richie and Becky McIntyre provided a stirring rendition of the Star Spangled Banner.

Chairman Rapp set the tone and emphasized that “We certainly have so much to celebrate as Republicans: The President, Vice-President, and the majority of both houses of Congress are Republican and a strict Constitutionalist has been restored to the Supreme Court.  She also mentioned some other things worth celebrating including the facts that 33 of 50 governors are Republican, 68 of 98 state legislatures are majority Republican and there is Republican legislative control in 33 of 50 states.  And in 25 states the governor is Republican and both state houses are majority Republican.”

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“Highlands County has much to celebrate too!  We elected Paul Blackman as sheriff.  The last time we had a Republican sheriff was more than 35 years ago.  Dr. Brenda Longshore was elected Superintendent of Schools keeping that position in Republican hands.  And Commissioners Jim Brooks, Greg Harris, and Ron Handley were re-elected.  All our Commissioners and Constitutional Officers are now Republican. ”   Here’s what I’m most proud of, because it represents all the hard work and effort we put forth.  In 2012, 76% of Registered Republicans in Highlands County voted.  In 2016, however, 83% voted.  This was happening all across the state.  We met people who were coming out to vote for the first time in their lives.

Is it any wonder that Republicans won so big in Florida?  Oh, yes we have much to celebrate!  When I look out over this room I see dedicated candidates, generous donors, and passionate volunteers who made our victory possible.  Was it all worth it?  You betcha!  So this victory party is for you.  Let’s celebrate and have some fun tonight.

A record crowd enjoyed very appropriate theme music selections from DJ Jeremy of Mobile Music and More.  All enjoyed excellent prime rib and barbecue chicken dinners catered by the The Depot in Avon Park! County Commission Chairman Don Elwell served as our emcee and kept the crowd entertained throughout the evening as he announced the selection of 22 door prizes and served as auctioneer for two tickets to a two-day country and western concert entitled Party in the Pines to be held at the Bienville Plantation Oct 20-21, 2017.

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Our special guest Congressman Tom Rooney and our Keynote Speaker Representative Ben Albritton (who is an announced candidate for the State Senate seat being vacated by Senator Denise Grimsley) provided timely updates from their federal and state government perspectives.

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Our major sponsors, Senator Denise Grimsley who has announced her candidacy to be Florida’s next Commissioner of Agriculture, Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam who has announced his candidacy to be Florida’s next Governor, Congressman Tom Rooney and Representative Cary Pigman provided very significant and much appreciated support.  A very special note of appreciation also to all of our program advertisers, table sponsors, prize and drawing donors and to all who purchased Round-Up tickets or donated funds so that others might attend.

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The Daily Signal – Younger Judicial Nominees Give Trump Chance for Legacy in Courts

Tuesday, May 9th, 2017

From The Heritage Foundation

Fred Lucas / / /

“This will be an important way [for Trump] to leave his stamp,” The Heritage Foundation’s John Malcolm says of President Donald Trump’s picks for federal court vacancies. (Photo: Kevin Dietsch/UPI/Newscom)

President Donald Trump will begin to leave his mark on the lower courts of the federal judiciary with 10 nominees named Monday, many of them judges still in their 40s.

“The president followed the principles that were used to guide that list to select the additional eight individuals,” @PressSec says.

Shortly after 7:30 p.m. Monday, the White House formally announced Trump’s nomination of five judges to federal appellate courts and another five judges to lower federal courts.

“They all appear to be bright, young, capable conservatives who promise to be outstanding judges; some are already judges,” John Malcolm, a legal scholar who oversees the Institute for Constitutional Government at The Heritage Foundation, told The Daily Signal earlier in the day.

Two of the appeals court nominees—Michigan Supreme Court Justice Joan Larsen, 48, nominated to the 6th Circuit, and Minnesota Supreme Court Justice David Stras, 44, nominated to the 8th Circuit—were on a list of 21 contenders for the U.S. Supreme Court that the Trump campaign released months ago.

Trump’s campaign combined lists of strong candidates for the Supreme Court compiled separately by scholars at The Heritage Foundation and The Federalist Society. [Heritage did not develop its list at the candidate’s request, as previous wording suggested.]

Trump also nominated Amy Coney Barrett, 45, a law professor at Notre Dame and former law clerk for the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, for the 7th Circuit, and Louisville lawyer John K. Bush, 53, for the 6th Circuit.

Rounding out the appeals court nominees is Alabama’s former solicitor general, Kevin Newsom, 44, who clerked for Justice David Souter, nominated for a seat on the 11th Circuit.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer told reporters during the Monday afternoon briefing:

These 10 individuals the president has chosen were chosen for their deep knowledge of the law and their commitment to upholding constitutional principles. Two of the nominees today came from the list of potential Supreme Court nominees that the president released during the campaign. … The president followed the principles that were used to guide that list to select the additional eight individuals.

Spicer said more judicial and other nominations are on the way.

“I think you will continue to see a very robust amount of announcements on not just the judicial front, but on several fronts,” he said.

Most Supreme Court justices previously served as appeals court judges. Also, the high court can take only a limited number of cases. So, circuit court nominees are highly important.

Trump previously nominated U.S. District Judge Amul Thapar to serve on the 6th Circuit. He is awaiting Senate confirmation.

With more than 120 vacancies, the nominations can’t come too soon, said J. Christian Adams, a former Justice Department attorney who now is president of the Public Interest Legal Foundation, a conservative legal group.

“I’m in federal courts all the time. There are too many vacancies,” Adams told The Daily Signal. “So, we can’t have too many nominees.”

A Democratic  majority in the Senate eliminated that chamber’s filibuster for nominees to the district and circuit courts in 2013.

“With a Republican Senate, now is the best time to nominate solid judges,” Adams said. “There is no reason to wait.”

Trump seems to have his eyes on the future with these nominees, said Curt Levey, president of the Committee for Justice and a constitutional lawyer with FreedomWorks, a conservative advocacy group.

“It’s clear that the administration is looking at young nominees,” Levey told The Daily Signal. “Being an appeals court judge, if not on the short list, it puts you on the long list for the Supreme Court. … This administration seems to be making a bigger factor of age than previous administrations.”

Trump also nominated Damien Schiff, a lawyer with the Pacific Legal Foundation, a conservative legal group, to the U.S. Court of Federal Claims.

The White House said the president made two district court nominations and intends to make two more:

  • Scott Palk, with the University of Oklahoma College of Law, to the Western District of Oklahoma.
  • Idaho state Judge David Nye to the U.S. District Court for Idaho.
  • Dabney Friedrich, a member of the U.S. Sentencing Commission and a former associate White House counsel under President George W. Bush, to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia (pending).
  • U.S. Magistrate Judge Terry Moorer to the Middle District of Alabama (pending).

The nominees build on Trump’s success in getting another appeals court judge, Neil Gorsuch, confirmed to the Supreme Court just weeks ago, said Carrie Severino, chief counsel for the Judicial Crisis Network, who posted brief biographies of each of Monday’s nominees on National Review’s website.

“The nominees have stellar qualifications and a record of courageous commitment to the rule of law that will make them excellent additions to the federal bench,” Severino said. “When it comes to fulfilling his campaign promise to appoint strong, principled judges, Trump is knocking it out of the park.”

For the rest of this great article and others, see: http://dailysignal.com/2017/05/08/younger-judicial-nominees-give-trump-chance-legacy-courts/

National Day of Prayer May 4, 2017 – 11 AM on Highlands County front courthouse lawn

Thursday, May 4th, 2017

2017 National Day of Prayer

Bring a lawn chair if possible to ensure that you will have a seat!

 

Republican Round-Up Victory Party Thursday May 11, 2017 at the Sebring Civic Center

Sunday, April 30th, 2017

Are you pleased with the appointment of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court?

Purchase tickets today and join the celebration of all Republican victories at the county, state, and national level! Make plans now to attend the Republican Roundup Victory Party Thursday May 11, 2017 at the Sebring Civic Center beginning at 5:30 PM. Commissioner Don Elwell will emcee. Our Special Guest Speaker is a very well-known central Floridian from Wauchula with extensive knowledge of the Florida agriculture industry. Purchase tickets by mail or online http://www.highlandscounty.gop Under “Upcoming Events”

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Happy Easter

Saturday, April 15th, 2017

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Happy Easter from the Highlands County Republican Executive Committee.

On the Third Day

Friday, April 14th, 2017

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Officers

Chairman
    Kathy Rapp
Vice Chairman
    Susan Beder
Secretary
    Kathy Hill
Treasurer
    Penny Kocarek

State Committeeman
    Earl Claire

State Committeewoman
    Sally Claire