June 9 - 13, 2008
"I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand." (Isaiah 41:10)
|On Capitol Hill This Week; Vol. XV, No. 15|
1. OBAMA CLAIMS DEMOCRATIC NOMINATION; CLINTON CONCEDES
Obama And Clinton Meet
Last night, Senators Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton eluded the press corps in order to meet in secret at the Washington, D.C., home of California Senator Dianne Feinstein. According to Sen. Feinstein, one staff member for each senator talked in her study, while Obama and Clinton spoke privately for about an hour in her living room. Beyond that, little else is known regarding the details of their conversation. What is clear, however, is that major efforts are being made to unify the Democrat Party. In an email to her supporters yesterday, Clinton wrote that she "will be speaking on Saturday about how together we can rally the party behind Senator Obama. The stakes are too high and the task before us too important to do otherwise."
What are the stakes? Let me repeat them: We are a nation at war, massive tax hikes are looming on the horizon and a liberal Supreme Court justice recently celebrated his 88th birthday. The Left is desperate to win, and it understands the need for unity in this critical election year precisely because the stakes are so high. (Gary Bauer; End-of-Day)
· "Pray without ceasing." (I Thess. 5:17)
2. SENATE DEMOCRATS BLOCK VOTE ON GAS PRICE RELIEF AMENDMENT
Last Friday, the Democrat-controlled United States Senate refused to vote on an amendment, sponsored by the Senate Republican leader, Mitch McConnell (KY), to the Barbara Boxer Climate Tax Increase bill. The McConnell Amendment would have provided gas price relief for all Americans.
The Democrats refused a vote on the McConnell Amendment, even though they had promised the American people in 2006 that if they would give the Democrats control of Congress again, the Democrats would decrease the price of energy. Yet, the price of a gallon of gasoline since the Democrats took control of Congress in January of last year, has increased by an astounding $1.65 per gallon: from $2.35 to $4.00 per gallon today nationwide.
Republican Leader McConnell blasted the Democrat leadership yesterday saying that the Democrat leadership have: "repeatedly blocked efforts to increase production of American energy here at home - as recently as last month, when 48 Democrat senators voted against the American Energy Production Act. And now, at the beginning of the summer driving season, it offers a bill that would send up gas prices another 53 cents a gallon. The people in Kentucky are paying on average $3.92 a gallon this week.
"They want to know what in the world is going on around here. I'm telling them to look at what's going on here this week. I'm asking the same question they are: Why on earth are we considering a bill that would raise gas prices even higher than they already are? Our friends on the other side have no serious plan for lowering gas prices. Indeed, they seem intent on raising them even higher. Which is why I have tried offering this amendment, as a sort of 'emergency brake' on the Majority."
The overwhelming majority of the American people have told the United States Congress that they support exploring domestic resources of energy in order to bring down the rising cost of gas. The House of Representatives House Energy Action Team released the following statistics on the history of support and opposition in the House to developing more sources of American-made oil and gas supplies. Regarding exploration in the barren land in ANWR, House Republicans support exploration by 91% and House Democrats OPPOSE exploration for new oil/gas sources by 86%. With regard to Outer Continental Shelf Exploration, 81% of House Republicans support and 83% of House Democrat OPPOSE such exploration. With regard to increased oil/gas refinery capacity, 97% of House Republicans support and 96% of House Democrats OPPOSE such exploration. Even the Chinese and Cuban communists are exploring off our shores in the Atlantic Ocean! (Christian Coalition of America)
· Statistics like these can really help American voters choose WHOM to send to Congress next year. Pray that this report is read far and wide; and pray that Senator McConnell's efforts will yet gain victory.
· "Having done all . . . stand." (Eph. 6:13)
3. SENATE BUSINESS GRINDS TO A HALT OVER JUDICIAL NOMINEE IMPASSE
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Democrat from Nevada, broke his promise to the Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (KY) to allow votes on 3 of President George W. Bush's Circuit Court of Appeals nominees before the Memorial Day vacation. As a result, Leader McConnell stopped the debate on a global warming bill on Wednesday and forced the Senate Clerk to read every word of the 491-page bill as a protest "to give the majority time to contemplate and consider the importance of keeping your word." Senate Democrat Leader Harry Reid said on April 15, 2008: "I will do everything within my power to get three judges approved to our circuit courts before the Memorial Day recess. Who knows, we may even get lucky and get more than that. We have a number of people from whom to choose."
The Democrat leader also has refused to keep his word on confirming 15 appeals court nominees which is the average a president gets confirmed with the opposite party in control of the Senate. Thus far, the Democrats have confirmed only 8 of President Bush's judicial nominations to the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and they confirmed only one of the 3 they promised would be confirmed before their long Memorial Day vacation. The Republican Senate in Bill Clinton's last 2 years confirmed 15 of his appeals court judges.
President George W. Bush said this week: "Congress needs to confirm the good men and women who have been nominated to important government positions. There are now more than 350 nominations pending before the Senate. These include highly qualified people I have nominated to fill vacancies on the Federal bench."
"Senate Republican Leader McConnell said , "The Republican Conference will continue to make the point that judicial nominations need to be treated fairly, and that commitments in this body need to be kept." He added that: "We are far behind the pace that is necessary for us to reach the goal that the Majority Leader and I set for this Congress. If that weren't troubling enough, what we have heard recently by the Chairman of the Judiciary Committee are threats to shut down the confirmation process completely. Surely, that is not his plan."
A Member of the Senate Judiciary Committe, Senator John Cornyn, R-TX said: "It is becoming increasingly clear that the majority party is interested more in rhetoric than working in good faith to confirm judicial nominees. They are attempting to run out the clock in hopes of a Democratic President appointing hard left, judicial activists in 2009. We will not let this happen."
· "Having done all . . . stand." (Eph. 6:13)
4. SENATE CLIMATE BILL SHELVED FOR NOW
The Wall Street Journal: "President Bush's Approach To Climate Changes Is Much More Realistic
"For months, Democrats and the environmental lobby promoted last week's Senate global-warming debate as a political watershed. It was going to be the historic turning point in U.S. climate change policy. In the event, their bill collapsed in a little more than three days. Republicans methodically dismantled the cost and complexity of 'cap and trade,' which sounds harmless but would inflict collateral damage on the wider economy in lost GDP and higher prices up and down the energy chain. Cap and trade is designed to raise energy prices, which are supposed to spur the investments and behavior changes needed for a less carbon-intensive economy. Maybe a vast reordering of the American economy in the name of solving a speculative problem isn't as popular as the greens believe. And perhaps President Bush's approach to climate change - voluntary reductions and subsidies for alternative technology - will seem a lot more realistic once the partisan fevers of the moment have passed." (Editorial, "Cap And Burn," The Wall Street Journal, 6/9/08)
· Offer a chorus of praise that this ill-conceived bill is on hold, at least for now. Pray that Congress be granted great and unusual wisdom in addressing the complex issue of energy policy and climate change. Pray against deception; loose truth.
· "The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." (James 5:16)
5. DEFENSE SECRETARY OUSTS AIR FORCE LEADERS IN HISTORIC SHAKE-UP
Defense Secretary Robert Gates ousted the Air Force's top military and civilian leaders Thursday, holding them to account in a historic Pentagon shake- up after embarrassing nuclear mix-ups. Gates announced at a news conference that he had accepted the resignations of Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Michael Moseley and Air Force Secretary Michael Wynne - a highly unusual double firing.
Gates said his decision was based mainly on the damning conclusions of an internal report on the mistaken shipment to Taiwan of four Air Force electrical fuses for ballistic missile warheads. And he linked the underlying causes of that slip-up to another startling incident: the flight last August of a B-52 bomber that was mistakenly armed with six nuclear- tipped cruise missiles. The report drew the stunning conclusion that the Air Force's nuclear standards have been in a long decline, a "problem that has been identified but not effectively addressed for over a decade."
White House press secretary Dana Perino said President Bush knew about the resignations but that the White House had "not played any role" in the shake-up. (Associated Press)
· Intercede over this matter, asking God to grant His wisdom to President Bush, Secretary Gates, and other Pentagon officials as a search is begun to nominate a new Air Force Chief of Staff. Pray that all matters related to nuclear safety be carefully examined; and that solid recommendations will come forth to ensure our future safety.
· " . . . if two of you agree on earth about any thing that they may ask, it shall be done for them by my Father who is in heaven." (Matthew 18:19)
6. PRESIDENT BUSH: NO REASON TO DELAY IRAQ WAR FUNDING BILL
President Bush, seeking to better his negotiating position ahead of votes on a huge Iraq war-funding bill, said Saturday that U.S. troops "deserve better" than the treatment they are getting from the Democratic-led Congress. "This is an opportunity for Congress to give our men and women in uniform the tools they need to protect us, and Congress should approve these vital funds immediately," Bush said in his weekly radio address. "Congress has had this funding request for more than a year, and there is no reason for further delay.' Bush said that any further delay in passage will have dire consequences, such as temporary layoffs of civilian employees next month and no more paychecks for troops after July." (The Associated Press)
· In this very political year, press in with vigorous intercession for passage of this bill. Our troops DO deserve better, even as they continue to "give their all" on the field of battle. Use the "hammer of God" to break through the stonewall of opposition in Congress to continued funding of the war in Iraq. Pray!
· "Is not My word . . . like a hammer that breaketh a rock into pieces?" (Jer. 23:29)
7. PRESIDENT BUSH LEAVES TODAY FOR EUROPE
Discussions to Include Aid For Afghanistan, Climate Change, And Breaking Down Trade Barriers
President George W. Bush heads to Europe today to ask leaders already sizing up the rivals to become his successor for more help for Afghanistan, more pressure on Iran, and more cooperation on climate change. "I don't think you're going to see dramatic announcements," US National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley told reporters last week. Still, the president . . . has a loaded diplomatic plate for the June 10-16 tour, which will take him first to Slovenia for the annual US-Europe summit, then to Germany, Italy, the Vatican, France, and Britain. Topping the list are Iran's nuclear program, more aid for war-torn Afghanistan, bringing European allies closer to his climate change views, and breaking down US-Europe trade barriers. (Agence France-Presse)
· Pray for the safety of President and Mrs. Bush as they head forth on this journey. May they find favor with all whom they meet, and may the president's message be heard overseas, "loud and clear."
· "For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways."
8. FIRST LADY LAURA BUSH VISITS AFGHANISTAN
On her third visit to the country, the first lady flew into Kabul then took a 50- minute helicopter flight to Bamiyan province. Bush's day-long visit came ahead of a conference Thursday in Paris where the United States hopes other countries will pledge billions of dollars to help Afghanistan. She intends to address the conference. "The people of Afghanistan don't want to go back (to Taliban rule) and live like that," Bush said during the flight to Kabul. "They know what it was like. The international community can't drop Afghanistan now, at this very crucial time." Meanwhile, the first lady met with President Hamid Karzai, saw a police academy where female recruits are trained and visited U.S. troops. She celebrated the construction of a paved road linking the Bamiyan airport with its bazaar and town center and toured a learning center under construction that will double as an orphanage." (The Associated Press)
· Thank the Lord for giving us a First Lady who cares as much about these "forgotten people" as does Laura Bush! May the nations hear and take heed to her heartcry for the Afghan people; and may they never forget again.
· "Call unto me and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things which thou knowest not." (Jer. 33:3)
9. BUSH TO PRESS EUROPE ON IRAN SANCTIONS
US President George W. Bush will push Europe to step up financial sanctions against Iran when he travels to the continent on Monday in what is likely to be his last extended presidential visit to the region. Amid signs that Tehran is accelerating its nuclear programme, Mr Bush will lobby European Union leaders to build on recent United Nations sanctions against Iran, take speedy action against Iran's Bank Melli and further reduce both export credits linked to Iran and financial institutions' dealings with the country, according to US officials. In an interview with Italy's RAI television, Mr Bush said: "I will continue to work on this trip to talk about the dangers of a nuclear Iran . . . we've got to work to stop them from learning to enrich [uranium].'" (Financial Times)
· Offer praise the we have a President who has "eyes to see" the enemy for what he is -- an enemy. Pray that President Bush's call for support among European nations to impose strict and effective sanctions against the regime in Iran will be honored. Pray!
· ". . . for as the angel of the Lord, so is my king to discern good and evil. And may the Lord your God be with you." (2 Sam. 14:17)
10. BUSH-OLMERT: IRAN THREATS SHOULD BE TAKEN SERIOUSLY
The Iranian threat is a serious one and the world should take it seriously according to President George W. Bush. In a meeting with Israel Prime Minister Ehud Olmert Bush emphasized the United States' attitude towards Iran is aligned with Israeli concerns. "It is very important for the world to take the Iranian threat seriously, which the United States does," Bush said as he began White House talks with Olmert.
Israeli ministers including the Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni in recent days have warned Israel may have to deal with Iran alone, unless the world responds to the repeated threats from Tehran. Bush moved to alleviate the Israeli concerns when he met with Olmert in the Oval office. Israel has been concerned that the US has not taken more specific action on Iran.
A press statement issued after the meeting reported that Olmert highlighted "the need for a profound mutual understanding as to the need for handling the threat, to prevent Iran from acquiring unconventional powers." Olmert said, "I came out with fewer question marks about the ways, means, time constraints, and determination necessary for handling the issue." (By Ron Ross, BFP Israel Mosaic Radio, June 5, 2008)
· Praise God for the blessed relationship between Israel and the United States. Pray that the relationship will continue.
· "I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed." (Genesis 12:3)
11. CHINA, U.S. TO MEET ON TRADE, ENERGY
Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson To Meet With Chinese Officials To Discuss Long-Term Trade, Energy, And Environmental Goals
China and the U.S. will focus on longer-term goals for cooperating on trade, energy and environmental issues during their Strategic Economic Dialogue this month, in what could be the last session of the biannual talks before the U.S. presidential election in November. Top officials from the two countries are scheduled to meet in Annapolis, Md., June 17-18 for the fourth round of the dialogue. The forum was started in 2006 by Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and his Chinese counterpart as a regular forum for the two sides to address thorny economic issues. . . The Chinese delegation will be headed for the first time by Wang Qishan, a veteran financial official with a reputation for problem-solving who has known Mr. Paulson for about a decade. Mr. Wang was promoted this year to be one of four vice premiers, with responsibility for the financial industry and trade issues. (The Wall Street Journal)
· Lift up Secretary Paulson and all who will accompany him in these discussions. May they be granted "wisdom from above" in every issue they will address with the Chinese regarding trade and energy issues.
· "For the eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous, and his ears attend to their prayer." (I Peter 3:12 NAS)
12. SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: ASIAN GAINS SEEN IN TERROR FIGHT
The deadliest terrorist networks in Southeast Asia have suffered significant setbacks in the past three years, weakened by aggressive policing, improved intelligence, enhanced military operations and an erosion of public support, government officials and counterterrorism specialists say. Three years after the region's last major strike - the attacks on three restaurants in Bali that killed three suicide bombers and 19 other people - American and Asian intelligence analysts say financial and logistical support from Al Qaeda to other groups in the region has long dried up, and the most lethal are scrambling for survival. . . . "The governments out here take it very seriously and, in my opinion, seem to be doing a very good job individually and working together to deal with that terrorist threat," Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, a former director of central intelligence, told reporters on June 1 at a regional security conference here." (The New York Times)
· Once again, offer praise for another good report. Our prayers ARE being answered. Praise God!
· "The effectual, fervent prayers of a righteous man availeth much." (James 5:16)
|This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .|
This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .
LORD IS ONE (Adoni Ehkhad Oo-Sh'mo Ehkhad)
"In that day it shall be . . . 'The LORD is One' and His name one." (Zech. 14:9 NKJV)
What a mystery! God my Father; God as Yeshua, who came to show me how to live; God as the Spirit -- who empowers me to live the godly life. Three as One -- what a mystery.
The Lord is One, His Name One. Thank You, LORD, that I don't have to understand this with my head to know it in my heart. How marvelous is Your Name!
(Taken from: Intimate Moments with the Hebrew Names of God, by Barri Cae Malin and Shmuel Wolkenfeld; Bridge-Logos Publishers; Gainesville, FL, 32614. ISBN: 0-88270-801-5)
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