By: Michele Bachmann
This past weekend I did what President Obama refused to do during his recent trip to Texas—I visited the U.S-Mexico border.
I knew that the border crisis was serious, but nothing could have prepared me for just how bad this situation truly is.
The results of the Obama administration’s lawlessness when it comes to enforcing existing immigration laws were magnified in the Rio Grande Valley, where Congressman Steve King and I visited a number of facilities and met with local, state, and federal officials.
What we saw was people processing, not border security.
Americans would be shocked to learn that virtually no one is stopped before gaining entrance. When a foreign national illegally enters the United States, they are taken to a processing facility, where it is determined whether or not they get to stay in the country.
While the popular media narrative has been to focus on the children who came here alone, it is only a small fraction of the growing problem along the southern border.
My heart breaks for the unaccompanied children, but officials told us that 80 percent of the people entering the country illegally are not women and children—they are males over the age of 14.
It is this latter group that is the source of much of the incoming violence, particularly with their increasing involvement in drug cartels and transnational gangs such as MS-13. These organizations profit from exploiting innocent people desperate for a better life into paying thousands of dollars to be transported into the United States.
MS-13 is a brutal international gang with more than 50,000 members—with thousands of members throughout the United States. This ugly and dangerous business has fueled violence on both sides of the border.
By failing to secure our border, the United States government has enabled and empowered a criminal enterprise made of drug cartels and human traffickers that spans our continent.
Enforcement of our border is so lax that I even witnessed coyotes smuggling an illegal alien in broad daylight near the banks of the Rio Grande in Roma, Texas.
The problem rests not with Border Patrol, but with the politicians and administration officials that crafted these policies. Border Patrol and the local law enforcement officials we met with are dedicated individuals who put their lives on the line, but their hands are tied. In fact, the majority of the local officials we met with said that this crisis is the consequence of open border policies.
Solving the problem will require the political will to secure our border.
First, Congress must put an end to the President’s policy of Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which he unilateral instituted in 2012. DACA is the root cause of why a surge of illegal immigrants are coming into the country expecting amnesty from President Obama. Since his June 15, 2012 memo, the amount of unaccompanied children apprehensions from Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras have increased from 15,000 in 2011 to nearly 60,000 in FY 2014.
Second, we must complete the fence along America’s southern border to prevent illegal entry onto United States soil. In 2006, Congress passed a bill that authorized and completely funded 700 miles of fence. Eight years later, it remains unfinished and people are simply walking across the border. If there were a fence in Roma, Texas, the illegal crossing I witnessed would not have been possible.
Third, we need to speed up the deportation process and put an end to prosecutorial discretion policies. While legal immigration and refugee petitions remain enormously onerous, our current system benefits illegal immigration. The current policy of reunification instead of orderly and humane deportation only furthers the border crisis.
Finally, agreements on foreign aid to Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras should be reexamined or frozen entirely until these countries cooperate with the United States and do their part in preventing the flow of illegal immigrants through their country and into ours. Remittance payments to these countries should also be taxed at a rate high enough to command the attention of their governments.
The United States is proudly a nation of immigrants that welcomes with open arms more legal immigrants than the entire world combined. But they must come through the legal channels. It’s time that we start sending a message that the rule of law matters and illegal behavior will not be rewarded.Read More
By Michele Bachmann
Just a few years ago, the conventional wisdom in Washington, DC, was that the Muslim Brotherhood would be a moderating force in the Middle East and bring democracy to the region. But not three years after the beginning of the “Arab Spring,” the people of countries like Egypt and Tunisia removed their Muslim Brotherhood- led governments. Other Middle Eastern nations have taken measures to designate the organization as a terrorist group and banned their activity entirely. Even our British allies have opened an official investigation into the group’s activities and connection to violent extremism. For the past 20 years and in three different administrations, the US government has identified and designated branches of the Muslim Brotherhood as terrorist organizations. US government officials have testified under oath before Congress that the Muslim Brotherhood has supported terrorism internationally and here at home. From it’s earliest days, the Muslim Brotherhood used violence as a strategy. It formed a “secret apparatus” to attack government officials and foreigners in Egypt, even killing two Egyptian prime ministers. Richard Clarke, the counterterrorism “czar” to both president Bill Clinton and president George W. Bush, testified before the Senate Banking Committee in October 2003 that the common link shared by al-Qaida, Islamic Jihad and Hamas was “the membership and the ideology of the Muslim Brothers.” As was recognized in the 9/11 Commission Report, virtually every Islamic terrorist group has built their organization on the ideological bedrock the Muslim Brotherhood established. Some have tried to paint al-Qaida as a great enemy of the Muslim Brotherhood, but whatever differences they have are tactical, and there are many reports of the groups cooperating and endorsing each other’s terrorist activities. A February 1993 House Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare reported that various branches of the international Muslim Brotherhood regularly took part in conferences with al-Qaida, Hamas, Hezbollah and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps. The senior clerical leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood, led by the group’s Qatar-based top jurist Yousef al-Qaradawi, issued a fatwa in November 2004 authorizing the killing of Americans in Iraq. Many of al-Qaida’s leaders also came through the Muslim Brotherhood’s ranks. Mohamed Atta, the ringleader of the 9/11 terrorist attack, according to The Washington Post was radicalized while part of the Muslim Brotherhood’s engineering syndicate in Egypt. It is fair to say that rather than being opposed to al-Qaida, the Muslim Brotherhood has been an open gateway to it. One of the enduring myths about the Muslim Brotherhood is that the group has renounced violence. Then how can one explain the Muslim Brotherhood’s longtime support for the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas? In fact, Hamas identifies itself in its 1988 Covenant as the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood – a fact recognized in the State Department’s annual Country Reports on Terrorism. It was president Bill Clinton who designated Hamas a terrorist organization in 1995. It is myopic to look at Hamas as it rains down thousands of missiles on our ally Israel without considering its role in the larger context of the global Muslim Brotherhood. In fact, the Justice Department in 2007 and 2008 successfully argued in federal court that the international Muslim Brotherhood had directed it’s affiliates in the United States to organize to provide “media, money and men” to Hamas. As federal prosecutors showed during the Holy Land Foundation trial, the largest terrorism financing trial in American history, the Muslim Brotherhood’s Palestine Committee raised millions for Hamas here in the United States. The judge in the case wrote in an opinion that there was “ample evidence” establishing the association between Muslim Brotherhood groups here in the US with Hamas. The convictions of the Holy Land Foundation executives have been upheld by the US Supreme Court. This was one of the reasons why FBI director Robert Mueller testified before Congress in February 2011 that “elements of the Muslim Brotherhood both here and overseas have supported terrorism.” The US government has designated branches, charities and leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood. US government officials have said that the Muslim Brotherhood around the world has supported terrorist groups. And the Justice Department has prosecuted elements of the Muslim Brotherhood here in the US for materially supporting terrorism. It is long overdue to act on what the US government has already acknowledged. It is time to designate the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization.The author, a Minnesota Congresswoman, is a member of the House Intelligence Committee and a former US presidential candidate.
This column originally appeared in the Jerusalem Post on July 30, 2014. Click here to view the original.Read More
Washington, D.C. -- Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (MN-06) returned today from a weekend trip to the United States-Mexico border to assess the current immigration crisis. Bachmann was joined by Congressman Steve King (IA-04) in making stops in the Brownsville, McAllen, and Laredo areas to meet with Border Patrol and other local, state, and federal officials. Their tour included visits to the Brownsville Port of Entry, Brownsville Office of Refugee Resettlement, McAllen Border Patrol Station, Texas Department of Public Safety at Weslaco Regional Headquarters, Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Laredo Point of Entry, among other stops. “Everywhere we went, the response was virtually the same: This is a crisis of President Obama’s own making. The real problem is the President’s lack of political will to enforce the laws on the books and do whatever it takes to secure our border,” said Bachmann. “We saw border processing, not border security. While the Customs and Border Protection Agency performs admirably on a daily basis, their purpose has become people processing—not stopping foreign nationals from unauthorized entry into the U.S. Currently, not one person who attempts to come into the country is stopped; instead, they are taken to a processing center before a decision is made if they will be allowed to stay,” Bachmann continued. “The United States generously welcomes new immigrants, but they must come through the legal channels. It’s time that we start sending a message that the rule of law matters and illegal behavior will not be rewarded. That begins with completing the border fence, Congress must amend current law and the President must end deferred action of childhood arrivals and all prosecutorial discretion policies,” Bachmann concluded.
Washington, D.C. -- Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (MN-06) and Congressman Steve King (IA-04) will be visiting the border between the United States and Mexico this weekend.
They will make stops in the Brownsville, McAllen, and Laredo areas and meet with border patrol and other local officials to assess the current immigration crisis.
“Although President Obama would prefer to play pool instead of visit the border, I want to see firsthand the impact of this administration’s immigration policies,” said Bachmann. “I have deep concerns over the failure to enforce border security laws, and I look forward to meeting with those tasked with patrolling the border to hear their thoughts on the growing crisis.”
Washington, D.C. -- Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (MN-06) released the following statement after the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals' Halbig v. Burwell decision regarding Obamacare subsidies:
"Today is a bombshell day for Obamacare.
"Today’s D.C. Circuit Court ruling shows once again that Obamacare is not being written by the people’s representatives. It is being written by a lawless President for politically desired outcomes.
"The very fact that we could have two contradictory outcomes on the same day is testament to how overly complicated and convoluted the Obamacare law is, leading to more uncertainty than ever for hardworking American families.
"But the bottom line is that the average American’s health insurance is far more expensive today than it was before Obamacare.
"We need to have a health care system that provides the best possible care at the lowest possible price and Obamacare is clearly not the answer.
"Hopefully today marks the beginning of the end of this unworkable, unaffordable law."
The savage murder of three innocent Jewish boys — Gil-ad Shaar, 16, Eyal Yifrach, 19, and Naftali Fraenkel, 16, a duel Israeli-U.S. citizen — is a chilling reminder of the threats Israelis face every day.
The boys were kidnapped and killed by the terrorist organization and member of the Palestinian Authority, Hamas, and their bodies were found south of Jerusalem in Hebron.
As the three families and the Jewish people around the world mourn the boys' deaths, the Israeli government needs the support of the United States now more than ever.
In a statement, President Obama said: “I have offered our full support to Israel [and] the Palestinian Authority to find the perpetrators of this crime and bring them to justice, and I encourage Israel [and] the Palestinian Authority to continue working together in that effort.” And he called for both sides to not “destabilize the situation.”
This statement is stunning because it fails to acknowledge that Hamas — thanks in many ways to the Obama administration — is now a member of the Palestinian Authority, and as a result, could become eligible to receive foreign assistance. It is also stunning for the fact that it urges restraint on Israel’s behalf after the cold-blooded murder of three of its citizen by terrorists.
Furthermore, the president neglects to condemn those in the Palestinian Authority and its official media publications who showered praise on the kidnappers, going so far as to call for further kidnappings of Jews.
The mother of one of the accused Hamas members said of her son, “They’re throwing the guilt on him by accusing him of kidnapping. If he truly did it – I’ll be proud of him till my final day.”
As the ambulance transported the three boys from their makeshift graves to prepare for a funeral, Palestinians threw rocks and attacked the vehicle. And during the funeral service, rockets were fired into southern Israel from Gaza.
This type of response should be unthinkable in a civilized world, but for Hamas, it is par for the course.
Hamas has instituted a culture of death aimed at the destruction of the Jewish people. Responsible for the murder of dozens of Americans and the launching of more than 12,000 missiles into Israel, violence is woven into the fabric of their society. Their sickening propaganda to children on Al-Aqsa TV seeks to dehumanize Jews and regularly contains stuffed animals and cartoon characters calling for the murder of Jewish “apes and pigs.”
Immediately upon unification with Fatah, Hamas claimed that an uprising would soon begin in the West Bank, and has sought to expand terrorist operations, including plans for kidnappings.
The United States had ample warnings this would happen, yet they were not heeded. In response, along with Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., I introduced a bipartisan resolution that calls for the immediate suspension of foreign assistance to the Palestinian Authority.
Our laws are clear: The United States cannot fund a power-sharing Palestinian government that includes Hamas as a member, or one that results from an agreement with Hamas and over which Hamas exercises “undue influence.”
Since the Obama administration immediately pledged support for the unity government, Hamas terrorists have intensified their attacks on Israel from both Gaza and now the West Bank, pushing us further from peace, not closer.
The United States cannot fund a unity government that will not adhere to the Quartet principles of recognition of the state of Israel, will not abide by all previous agreements with Israel, and will not renounce violence as a strategy. To date, Hamas is 0-3.
I join with the nation of Israel and Jews everywhere in mourning the horrific deaths of these three innocent boys. This most recent and incredibly heinous act must compel the Obama administration to immediately reverse course and defund the Palestinian Authority.
Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., is a member of the House Intelligence Committee.
This column originally appeared on the Washington Examiner on July 3, 2014. To view the original, click here.Read More
St. Michael, Minn. -- Today, Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (MN-06) joined with state and local officials to break ground for the expansion of the I-94 West Corridor, a project she has championed in her final term in Congress.
“A little more than a year ago, this project was barely on the radar of statewide leaders. I made it one of my top priorities in my final term as the Representative of the Sixth District and I am proud to have been a part of the effort to ensure lane expansion on I-94. This project will increase mobility, enhance safety, create jobs and keep Minnesotans moving and I look forward to the continued expansion of the vital I-94 corridor all the way to St Cloud,” said Bachmann.
Click here for more pictures from the groundbreaking ceremony.Background on Bachmann’s support for capacity expansion of I-94 W Bachmann has been a long-time advocate of the capacity expansion of the I-94 West Corridor. Bachmann worked with businesses, advocates, and a bipartisan group of lawmakers to urge the Minnesota Department of Transportation and Governor Dayton to award I-94 part of the of the Corridors of Commerce funds. Bachmann has had several constructive meetings with Governor Dayton and Commissioner Zelle regarding I-94.
KARE 11: Bachmann backs pair of Minnesota highway projects Associated Press: Michele Bachmann wants wider I-94 WCCO: Bachmann, Allies Pitch I-94 Widening To Dayton KARE 11: Bachmann, area coalition seek expansion of I-94 KNSI: Upgraded Highways A Priority, Bachmann Says St. Cloud Times: Bachmann: I-94 work would boost our potential
Washington, D.C. -- Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (MN-06) released the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s decision on the Hobby Lobby case:
“I am extremely encouraged by today’s Supreme Court decision to uphold the religious liberty rights of the Green family of Hobby Lobby. At its core, today’s decision was about the right of individual and family business owners to be free from government mandates that force them to deny their sincerely-held religious beliefs. America was founded on the principle of religious freedom, and there is nothing more fundamental than the First Amendment. This decision represents a tremendous victory for the basic constitutional rights of every American.”
Washington, D.C. -- Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) joined with Reps. Karen Bass (D-CA), Tom Marino (R-PA), and Jim McDermott (D-WA), the co-chairs of the Foster Youth Caucus, to introduce bipartisan legislation that prohibits federal funding for medical experimentation on a ward of the State. The bill, H.R. 4989, nicknamed “Justina’s Law”, is a response to the recent case of 16-year-old Justina Pelletier, who was finally released from Boston Children’s Hospital (BCH) back to the care of her family after a 16-month custody battle between the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and Justina’s parents. BCH and many other hospitals have an internal policy that allows for children who are deemed “wards of the State”, including foster children, to receive treatment or be involved in research that presents great risk even if there is no prospect of any benefit to the child. “Whether it is one child or thousands, it is our duty to guarantee that children are kept safe from harm while in the custody of their respective states. Not all these children have families like the Pelletiers willing or able to advocate on their behalf. Sixteen months ago, Justina was a figure skater. Today, she cannot stand, sit, or walk on her own. It is unconscionable what happened to Justina, and we must do all we can to prevent it from ever happening again. Removing federal funding from such experimentation is an important first step.” – Rep. Michele Bachmann (MN-06) "Children need to be loved and cared for, not treated as something to be experimented on. Foster children are particularly vulnerable because they may not have parents to advocate for them. This bill will make it clear that children are blessings, not guinea pigs." – Rep. Karen Bass (CA-37) “The bonds between children and parents is sacred. The closeness and level of intimate understanding between them transcends our societal constructs. In Justina’s case, she was kept from her loved ones and essentially detained by the hospital and the state. She was lucky to have parents that fought for her and leveraged the support of the media and public officials. Yet too many children do not have parents to speak for them and look out for their health and best interests during times of physical and emotional vulnerability. That fact saddens me. It would sadden any person who knows the power of love and affection. That is why I am proud to support Reps. Bachmann, Bass, and McDermott on this legislation because no child, with parents or not, should be subject to medical experimentation under the legal designation as ward of the state.” – Rep. Tom Marino (PA-10) “The strength and bravery that Justina Pelletier and her family have shown in the face of incredible hardship is a guidestar for us all. We must act to protect and cherish children in the care of a state and make sure that they are not the subject of risky medical experimentation. I look forward to working with Reps Bachman, Bass, Marino and countless other colleagues from both sides of the aisle to pass Justina’s law as quickly as possible.” – Rep. Jim McDermott (WA-07)Click here to view the full text of H.R. 4989.
Washington, D.C. -- Earlier today Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (MN-06) spoke during a hearing on the Export-Import Bank in the House Financial Services Committee. In her statement, Bachmann outlines the four areas in which Congress has contributed to America no longer being in the Top 10 for freest economies. Click here to view a video of her statement, and see below for a transcript. BACHMANN: A lot of what I’ve heard here today is that we need to continue to provide subsidies and stay on the subsidy train because the rest of the world is on the subsidy train. And to continue that logic means that nations of the world have to continue one-upmanship on subsidy. So it's subsidy versus subsidy and it's a complete rejection of the free market. I don't think that's the direction we want to go. The free market has built up the most magnificent economies of this world. I remain a defender of the free economy. One of our former presidents said that nothing is more representative of eternal life than a government program. And I think we heard the defenders today here of this program, despite the mismanagement, despite the fraud, despite the failures. We have an executive summary in front of me that says, as a matter of fact, the Export-Import Bank operated a loss every year from 1982 to 1995. When reform was passed back in -- when reform was passed, the FCRA, that meant then that the losses were back filled by the taxpayer and Ex-Im Bank received $9.92 billion in direct appropriations from the government between '92 and '96. When we talk about free economies, the United States used to be considered under the category of a free economy. We’re not the freest economy in the world. We’re not the fifth freest economy in the world. We’re not even the tenth freest economy in the world. We have actually fallen out of the status called free economy. We’ve now dropped out of the top ten. We’re considered a mostly free economy. And while the fault isn't at the foot of the Ex-Im Bank, it is death by a thousand cuts. This is just one example. And I think that congress needs to look at itself in the mirror and see what we have done to contribute to a less free economy. And I think there are four areas. One is we have the highest -- look at the tax code in the United States. We have the highest corporate tax rate in the world, bar none. 35%. Then you add on to that the Obama new tax rate, the 3.8%, various state corporate tax rates, and you see how uncompetitive the United States is. We need massive tax reform. Then you look at the next factor. Regulatory burden. Dodd-Frank was brought up today. Obamacare was brought up today. The new EPA rules are new regulations. We have heaped upon American businesses the uncompetitive factor of a tax rate, you might say, through increased regulatory burden. That’s number two. Number three is the United States government, which has exceeded growth upon the taxpayers' ability to pay for government services. We are growing the cost of government. And number four, the lack of sound money. We have seen through what the federal reserve has been doing the increased inefficiency with sound money. Those four reasons alone aren't your fault. Those are the fault of the United States congress and this government. We are the ones that need to look in the mirror because we are the ones who have made this a less free economy. Regarding the Export-Import Bank and the four firings that just occurred, that doesn’t include the 74 cases since April 2009 when bank officials were forced to act on the basis of integrity investigations by the office of the Inspector General. There are dozens of other fraud cases involved in the Ex-Im beneficiaries that have now been referred to the Department of Justice for prosecution. I see that my time has now expired, but I enter into the record several recent stories about the fraud that is going on at this bank, and I want to stand on record—I oppose the continuation of this bank because reform hasn’t worked, and we’ve been ignored.
2417 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
In 2006, Congresswoman Michele Bachmann became the first Republican woman to be elected to represent Minnesota in the U.S. House of Representatives. As a self-proclaimed “Constitutional Conservative,” Bachmann is committed to fixing Washington’s broken ways by advocating for America’s adherence to the Constitution. Bachmann has become known on Capitol Hill as a member who champions tax reform, works to cut wasteful government spending and supports limiting the size of our government. She also is devoted to the repeal of Obamacare, a legislation she believes is an example of government’s recent uninhibited growth. In Bachmann’s view, the government needs to make the kind of serious spending decisions that many families and small businesses across America have been forced to make. As a believer in the traditional values upon which this country was founded, she consistently defends America’s religious liberties and the importance of the family as the first unit of government. She also has continuously worked to defend the right to life for all Americans, including the unborn.
Bachmann is a member of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the Financial Services Committee. She has taken the opportunity of serving on the Intelligence Committee to regularly advocate for peace through strength to ensure America’s national security. As she vowed in her Oath of Office, Bachmann continues to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” Bachmann is devoted to doing her part to ensure America’s safety. As a member of the Financial Services Committee, Bachmann has been given keen insight into the current housing crisis and credit crunch. This insight has led her to be a staunch opponent of the taxpayer-funded bailout of Wall Street and the Dodd-Frank legislation.
As the federal government continues to grow under the current administration, Bachmann was honored to establish the Tea Party Caucus in July 2010. She is proud to stand with the Tea Party to call for lower taxes, renewed focus on the Constitution and smaller government.
Prior to serving in the U.S. Congress, Bachmann served in the Minnesota State Senate from 2000-2006. As a Minnesota State Senator, she championed the Taxpayers Bill of Rights. Before holding elected office, Bachmann worked on hundreds of civil and criminal cases as a federal tax litigation attorney. Through her experience as a tax attorney, Bachmann came to understand firsthand the need to simplify the current tax code and reduce taxes on families and small businesses. Yet, it was her role as a mother of five and foster mother of 23 that led her to call for the abolishment of Goals 2000 and the Profiles of Learning and start a charter school for at-risk kids in Minnesota.
Bachmann is a graduate of Anoka High School and Winona State University. After receiving her J.D. at the O.W. Coburn School of Law at Oral Roberts University and an L.L.M. in Tax Law at the College of William and Mary, she along with her husband, Marcus moved their young family to Stillwater, Minnesota. There they opened a small business health care practice that employs nearly fifty people. The Bachmanns, who have been married over thirty years, have five children, Lucas, Harrison, Elisa, Caroline and Sophia. The Bachmanns have also cared for 23 foster children, inspiring Bachmann’s tireless efforts in Congress on behalf of America’s foster and adopted children, a role that has earned her bipartisan praise.
She is proud to represent Minnesota’s Sixth Congressional District, which contains parts of seven counties, stretching from Scandia to Saint Cloud and Waconia to Waite Park.
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While at US-Mexico border, I witnessed coyotes smuggling a woman across the Rio Grande—and caught it on tape: http://t.co/4io9hQN6MX
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Will be talking to @SeanHannity in a few minutes about my trip to the US-Mexico border and American national security. Tune in!
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I-94 expansion begins this week. Will be major boost to central MN economy with less time stuck in traffic: http://t.co/oediJlqeBt
In my column, I detail just what I saw while on the U.S.-Mexico border. I knew that the border crisis was serious, but nothing could have prepared
Today I was proud to support much-needed reforms of the VA, including providing emergency assistance to veterans who need it most; increasing
While at the United States-Mexico border, I personally witnessed coyotes smuggling an illegal alien across the Rio Grande—and caught it on
A recap of my trip to the U.S.-Mexico border this past weekend.
It was an honor to speak at the Christians United for Israel summit this morning. We have an absentee President pursuing a fantasy foreign policy—we