On Thursday, July 24, the Supreme Court of Mississippi denied to rehear Sen. Chris McDaniel's request to view poll books without voters' personal information redacted.
“We find that the motion is not well taken and should be denied,” the order stated.
McDaniel wanted full access to information included in poll books to determine the validity of votes counted in the run off against U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran in Harrison County. The county would only make the poll books available if the McDaniel campaign would pay the administrative fees associated with redacting information—such as voters' social security number, telephone numbers and date of birth—from the records.
The McDaniel campaign tried to use Mississippi Code section 23-15-19 to make the claim that poll books are included in the materials necessary to confirm the legality of the votes in an election. Harrison County Circuit Clerk, Gayle Parker, and the Mississippi Attorney General, Jim Hood, responded that the section McDaniel cites does not include poll books.
The Mississippi Supreme Court agreed on July 17, writing, “After due consideration, we can discern no legal requirement that poll books be included in the contents of ballot boxes.”
But today’s court decision was not uncontested. Justices Michael Randolph, James W. Kitchens and David Chandler made a statement that McDaniel should be granted a Rule 33 hearing.
“Assuring the integrity of the electoral process is a matter of the highest priority and implicates the fundamental rights of all Mississippians,” the statement said.
McDaniel's lawyers said last week that a formal challenge to the results of the senatorial election will be made by tomorrow, claiming that a large number of abnormalities compromised the vote count.
Kanye might not be here to argue about his facial features or to convert atheists into believers.
But it appears that the American Family Association is.
This morning, the Tupelo-based conservative mass-media machine sent out a press release alerting its followers in 26-point bold font that the Cartoon Network is planning a "New Blasphemous Show Called ‘Black Jesus’"
The the second line of the release, written in 18-point font, suggests it's the Lamb of God's swearing and using violent behavior that the AFA finds abhorrent. Yet, the 717-word release mentions the name of the show — 'Black Jesus' — seven times and has just three references to violence.
It goes on to say: "Late-night shows on the Cartoon Network fall under the block known as 'Adult Swim,' and a new program in the lineup includes the non-animated show 'Black Jesus,' which portrays the Son of God as a black guy living in the hood.' The blasphemous, irreverent and disrespectful show depicts him living in Compton Gardens and makes a mockery of the Lord."
Compton is a black-majority city in the south-central region of the Los Angeles metro. Thanks to the rise of Compton-based hip-hop groups like N.W.A. in the early 1990s and films like Boyz in the Hood (named after an N.W.A. hit song), Compton holds a place in the American imagination as a poor and violent place — the kind of place where Christ would probably hang out.
AFA President Tim Wildmon, speaking through a release said: “The garbage that passes for entertainment continues to disturb us. This new show is a complete misrepresentation of Jesus Christ and the message of hope and salvation He brings to the world. Even the three-minute trailer was too vile to watch, with multiple uses of the f-word by the actor portraying ‘Black Jesus.’ Christians and anyone who believes in respecting faith must come together to make sure this program never airs.”
Wildmon's father, Donald, started AFA because he was offended by a TV scenes of unmarried people having sex.
A group called One Million Moms and American Family Association want Americans to "send a loud and clear message to Adult Swim, its owner Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. (a Time Warner Company) and all potential advertisers on 'Black Jesus' that this kind of programming is insulting and unacceptable."
“If we speak with one voice now, we can keep this program from ever seeing the light of day,” a one of the million moms said. “Christians must take a stand and not be silent. Networks like Adult Swim continue to mock Christianity, and we will not stand for it. Christians should no longer sit idly by and allow this blasphemy to continue without speaking up in protest. ‘Black Jesus’ is another attempt to distort the truth about Christianity.”
A plethora of new music...
The Jackson Free Press and the Center for Violence Prevention are proud to announce the 10th Annual JFP Chick Ball on Saturday, July 19, 2014, at the Arts Center of Mississippi in downtown Jackson at 201 E. Pascagoula St. This year's special JFP Chick Ball is moving to the Arts Center for this year's special gala, which will celebrate a decade of preventing domestic abuse, protecting families, and empowering women to lift themselves and their families up after experiencing abuse.
This year, at 8 p.m. the JFP Chick Ball will honor three heroes who embody the event's motto of "prevent, protect, empower": Abuse survivor Sarah Reynolds, state Sen. Sally Doty, who helped create the state Office Against Interpersonal Violence, and the Mississippi Law Enforcement Officers Training Academy, for their work against sex trafficking in the state. The JFP is also honoring a decade of Chicks We Love at the event.
Past JFP Chick Ball events, all at Hal & Mal's in Jackson, have resulted in the purchase of a new mini-van for client transportation, the launch of the Batterer's Intervention Program, and legal assistance for victims. Proceeds from the 2013 Chick Ball were used in addressing an emerging issue in our area—human trafficking, which is also known as modern-day slavery.
This year's JFP Chick Ball is honoring and supporting all the work of the Center for Violence Prevention and its efforts to save and improve lives of families in central Mississippi. "Domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking occurrences continue to rise in the Central Mississippi area, as we are hearing almost daily about another woman or child whose life has been negatively impacted by it," Sandy Middleton, executive director of the Center for Violence Prevention in Pearl, says. "These interpersonal crimes cross all social-economic, racial and cultural boundaries, meaning they can affect any of us or our children."
JFP Editor-in-Chief Donna Ladd launched the event a decade as a way to give Jackson-area adults of all ages and income brackets a way to help fight the abuse epidemic, which strikes all communities. She also wanted it to be fun, creative and a celebration of female performers.
"The Chick Ball has always cost $5 to get in. I purposefully designed it to welcome all who want to come. And chicks must be prominent in all performances! That, of course, means it's a very popular event for our arm candy as well; men are some of our best donors, supporters and dancers!"
The JFP Chick Ball has become a fashion fete as well, with all kinds of dress welcome—from jeans to bling. The Diva of Bling (her) and Best Arm Candy (him) take home prizes from local businesses every year.
The event's silent auction is one of a kind, with hundreds of gifts, pieces of art and gift certificates from local businesses and artists donated each year. The JFP is accepting auction donations through Thursday, July 17 (at 125 S. Congress St., #1324), during normal business hours.
"One of ...
This morning Hinds County GOP Chairman Pete Perry told reporters that the runoff election between Sen. Thad Cochran and Sen. Chris McDaniel went smoothly and was conducted properly. He denied allegations that Hinds poll workers were denied poll books so that they could check to see if anyone had already voted Democratic in the initial primary on June 3, which would have made their vote ineligible.
These illegal crossover votes had been the topic of much discussion by the McDaniel campaign, who believed they’d find enough to challenge the results of the election.
Perry told reporters that Claude McInnis, who initially told Breitbart about the lack of access to poll books, lied. When asked about allegations of vote buying, as reported on GotNews.com, Perry said, “It’s time for them to put up or shut up.”
He said the McDaniel campaign would have to find proof of voter fraud and vote buying to move forward with those claims.
“I’m not aware of any vote buying,” Perry said.
Perry’s company, Paradigm Government Relations, was paid $60,000 by the pro-Cochran super PAC Mississippi Conservatives, started by Henry Barbour.
Still, Perry said he oversaw the examination of poll books and absentee ballots and that representatives from both campaigns only found roughly 350 ineligible votes.
McDaniel’s campaign plans to hold a press conference tomorrow to discuss the findings from their inspection of ballot boxes and how they plan to move forward in challenging the election results. McDaniel supporters are anxious to hear how he will respond to Perry’s statements that the campaign was conducted in accordance with the law.
Noel Fritsch, McDaniel campaign spokesperson, said:
"We hope that the fact Pete Perry was paid $60,000 by Thad Cochran's super PAC to move Democrat votes in Hinds County had nothing to do with the fraud he is alleged to have engaged in, but we're glad Pete has taken a sudden interest in the integrity of the election, and hope he helps Mississippians find the truth about whether he ordered precincts to allow ineligible Democrats to vote illegally on June 24th."
"I've not resigned and not received a termination letter," June Hardwick, a Jackson municipal judge, told the Jackson Free Press this afternoon.
Hardwick, whom Mayor Chokwe Lumumba appointed to a judgeship in 2013, was responding to rumors on a local blog that she had stepped down from her post last week.
Fueling the speculation that Mayor Tony Yarber, who has been cleaning house of many of the late mayor's appointments, is the fact that two municipal court appointees are up for nomination on tonight's city council—Gerald Mumford and Bob Waller.
The city's website lists six municipal judges, including Waller. Hardwick's name does not appear on the list, but it's unclear when the site was last updated.
Things have been tense between Hardwick, a former Hinds County public defender, and Yarber since May when Hardwick set a bond for a murder suspect that Yarber felt was too low. Yarber told WJTV that he would considering removing judges who weren't tough enough on violent criminals.
"We intend on ensuring that if you sit in a municipal judge seat in this city then the expectation is that you will value the lives and the families of those people who are affected by violent crimes by setting a bond that is appropriate in terms of that crime," Yarber told WJTV, "and $50,000 bond for a life that was taken...we're not tolerating that."
In that case, a 19-year-old named Wilber Clay was arrested for the Mother's Day shooting death of 29-year-old Ebony Hervey.
Yarber demurred when another WJTV reporter asked about the situation with Hardwick earlier today.
"I'm focused on the two (people) we have nominated," Yarber said.
The city code briefly talks about the rules of judicial appointments — "at the time provided for the appointment of other officers, not more than three municipal judges shall be appointed by the mayor and confirmed by an affirmative vote of a majority of the council present and voting" — but also stops short of stating specific circumstances for removing them from the bench.
In the meantime, despite all the consternation over Clay's bail being insufficiently tough, records from the Hinds County Sheriff's Office shows that Clay remains incarcerated in the Raymond Detention Center.
Hardwick is scheduled to sit on the bench Wednesday afternoon.
True the Vote, the Houston—Texas-based pollwatching organization that is suing Mississippi political and government officials over alleged voter suppression—has submitted two affidavits from people to support their claims that the integrity of the June 24 Republican primary for U.S. Senate might have been compromised.
One submitted to TTV by a woman named Susan Morse in Noxubee County claims that a Macon woman participated in the GOP primary after voting in the Democratic primary June 3, which state election laws prohibit.
Another, filed in Harrison County by a man named Phillip C. Harding III, claims that at about 2 p.m. on July 1—one week after the election that U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran beat state Sen. Chris McDaniel, he observed election officials discard ballots.
Harding writes: "In a one of the bins I found a small stack of provisional ballots, unopened. I gave te provisional ballots to an exec committee member who took control of them. I also found absentee ballot bags in several o the supply bins. Some had opened envelopes and applications in the them. I took the applications and envelopes out because I did not know what to do with them, but believed they should be saved. After setting them aside I saw another volunteer dispose of them at executive committee members' direction."
The group filed a motion for a temporary restraining order in U.S. District Court in Jackson late Wednesday against election commissioners in several Mississippi counties, including Hinds County, as well as the state GOP. A teleconference took place this morning at the federal courthouse.
The motion for the TRO detailed the counties it says is not complying with the law: While some counties provided proper voter records, Copiah County, Hinds County, Jefferson Davis County, Lauderdale County, Leake County, Madison County, Rankin County, Simpson County, and Yazoo County refused. These counties, who have been sued via their respective Election Commissions, also wrongfully maintain that the birthdates of voters must be redacted from voter records, at Plaintiffs’ expense."
All Citizens for Mississippi, the super PAC created by Bishop Ronnie Crudup of New Horizon Church International, bought radio advertisements at Jackson stations WKXI, WJMI, WOAD on June 20 to air June 21-24. The ads encouraged black voters to turn out to the polls in support of Sen. Thad Cochran and suggested Sen. Chris McDaniel, if elected, would hurt race relations in Mississippi.
The super PAC bought 52 radio spots for each of these stations, which cater to black audiences, amounting to $9,825. Bishop Crudup told The Clarion-Ledger he helped raise nearly $200,000 for All Citizens for Mississippi, which was mostly spent on campaign advertisements for Cochran.
Federal law permits super PACs to raise and spend unlimited sums of money, but they cannot give directly to candidates' fundraising committees nor coordinate with campaigns and must report their activities each month or quarter. For any expenditures over $1,000 from June 4 though June 23, including for advertising, Crudup's PAC was also required to file 24-hour reports with the FEC. A search of federal campaign-finance records yields no filings by All Citizens for Mississippi. Federal law requires the PAC to file a report with the FEC by July 15, detailing all donors to the PAC. The paperwork to set up the PAC, signed by Vann, indicated that it was filled out May 30, 2014, and not received and stamped by the FEC on June 6.
The All Citizens for Mississippi ads were placed by the media buying firm, American Media Advocacy Group, which also placed ads at WLBT for the super PAC Mississippi Conservatives, another campaign group in support of Cochran.
Jon Ferrell, a buyer from National Media Research Planning & Placement, bought the ads through American Media Advocacy Group for both Jackson TV and radio stations.
The National Republican Senatorial Committee filed $175,000 with the Federal Elections Commission on June 19 to the payee National Media Research Planning & Placement for the purpose of phone calls and media supporting Cochran; however, we have found no advertisements in Mississippi that are attributed to the NRSC or the media-buying firm they gave money to.
Checks from American Media Advocacy Group, signed by Ferrell, to Jackson’s radio stations show the same address as National Media Research Planning & Placement.
Sales orders for Cochran’s candidate fundraising committee, Citizens for Cochran, were not found in Jackson’s black radio stations' political public files. Citizens for Cochran did advertise in The Clarion-Ledger and distributed doorknob hangers in whiter parts of Jackson.
Calls to National Media were not returned. Read more here.
It really exists. Well, technically.
The Jackson Free Press and the Center for Violence Prevention are proud to announce the 10th Annual JFP Chick Ball, which will celebrate a decade of preventing domestic abuse, protecting families and empowering women to lift themselves and their families up after experiencing abuse.
Past JFP Chick Ball events have resulted in the purchase of a new mini-van for client transportation, the launch of the Batterer's Intervention Program, and legal assistance for victims. Proceeds from the 2013 Chick Ball were used in addressing an emerging issue in our area-Human Trafficking, which is also known as modern-day slavery.
This year's JFP Chick Ball is honoring and supporting all the work of the Center for Violence Prevention and its efforts to save and improve lives of families in central Mississippi. "Domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking occurrences continue to rise in the Central Mississippi area, as we are hearing almost daily about another woman or child whose life has been negatively impacted by it," Sandy Middleton, executive director of the Center for Violence Prevention in Pearl, says. " These interpersonal crimes cross all social-economic, racial and cultural boundaries, meaning they can affect any of us or our children."
JFP Editor-in-Chief Donna Ladd conceived the event a decade as a way to give Jackson-area adults of all ages and income brackets a way to help fight the abuse epidemic, which strikes all communities. She also wanted it to be fun, creative and a celebration of female performers. "The Chick Ball has always cost $5 to get in. I purposefully designed it to welcome all who want to come. And chicks must be prominent in all performances! That, of course, means it's a very popular event for our arm candy as well; men are some of our best donors, supporters and dancers!"
A performance line-up will be released July 11, as well as a list of restaurants providing food and a full sponsor list.
The JFP Chick Ball has become a fashion fete as well, with all kinds of dress welcome—from jeans to bling. The Diva of Bling (her) and Best Arm Candy (him) take home prizes from local businesses every year.
The event's silent auction is one of a kind, as well, with hundreds of gifts, pieces of art and gift certificates from local businesses and artists donated each year. The JFP will accept auction donations through Friday, July 18, but can only guarantee inclusion in the big Chick Issue Gift Guide if received by Friday, July 11, to 125 S. Congress St., Suite 1324, during normal business hours.
"One of the best parts of the Chick Ball is watching people of all ages step up to donate money, time or auction gifts in the months leading up to the JFP Chick Ball. You never know what's going to walk through the door!" Ladd says. This year, the items so far include a guitar, artwork by HC Porter and a barbecue grill.
At the event on July 19 at the ...
In the GOP's continued saga of internecine warfare, there's another front opening in the Battle of Mississippi with a shot coming from... Missouri?
The chairman of the Missouri GOP wants the campaign investigated by the Republican National Committee, according to the Washington Post. The Missouri GOP chair wants the RNC to investigate racially-charged robocalls and ads that appear to have been placed in Canton, Miss., and elsewhere in support of Cochran's run-off bid.
The head of the Missouri Republican Party on Tuesday asked Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus to appoint a task force to investigate what he called “racially divisive ads and robocalls” critical of state Sen. Chris McDaniel in the Republican runoff for U.S. Senate in Mississippi.
Ed Martin, the GOP chair in Missouri, is apparently concerned that Henry Barbour, nephew of former Governor Haley Barbour, may be behind a radio ad that was reported by Britain's Daily Mail.
The Daily Mail story, which offers an in-depth investigation to determine who placed the ads and how, notes that the ads were tagged "paid for by Citizens for Progress," a group that isn't registered with the FEC.
According to the Daily Mail, this same group name had been used previously by Mitzi Bickers, an Atlanta pastor, who, coincidentally, was being paid by Mississippi Conservatives -- a "super PAC" created by Haley Barbour and run by his nephew, Henry Barbour.
The younger Barbour told the Daily Mail he didn't know about the radio ads, although he acknowledged hiring Bickers to run a robocall campaign in the Cochran-McDaniel runoff.
In the radio ad, McDaniel is linked to an "ally" of the KKK, and listeners are warned that a McDaniel victory could mean a loss of government benefits such as food stamps, lunch programs and disaster assistance.
See the new Paul McCartney video filmed partly in Natchez...
Verbatim release from the office of Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves:
LT. GOV. REEVES NAMES SMALL BUSINESS OWNER TO JACKSON SALES TAX COMMISSION
JACKSON – Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves today named small business owner and local architect Michael Boerner to the 1-percent sales tax commission charged with overseeing expenditures from a recent sales tax increase in the city of Jackson.
The 10-member commission will develop a plan for infrastructure repairs and address how tax revenues will support the plan. In January, voters in Jackson approved raising the city’s sales tax by 1 percent to fund infrastructure repairs.
“Michael has a passion for the city of Jackson and wants our capital city to be successful,” Lt. Gov. Reeves said. “His experience managing a business and expertise as an architect will be useful as the commission prepares a plan to address Jackson’s infrastructure challenges.”
Boerner, AIA, LEED AP, is the principal of Wier+Boerner Architecture in Jackson. He has a bachelor of architecture degree from Mississippi State University and a bachelor of science degree in business administration from Millsaps College. Boerner has architectural experience working for firms in Dallas, Birmingham, New Orleans and Jackson.
“Jackson needs a strong, reliable infrastructure to thrive,” Boerner said. “I look forward to serving on the commission and helping to shape the city’s future.”
The Jackson resident has worked on numerous projects around Mississippi, including Babalu restaurant in the Fondren neighborhood of Jackson, renovations to the Mississippi State Fairgrounds and Coliseum and the Iron Horse Grill restaurant in downtown Jackson. He also serves on the State Board of Architecture.
Boerner and his wife, Katherine, have one daughter and attend Galloway United Methodist Church in Jackson.
Verbatim release from the Mississippi Development Authority:
Exclusive Screening of Universal Pictures and Imagine Entertainment’s
Get on Up to Be Held Sunday, July 27, at Grandview Cinema in Madison, Miss.
Tickets on Sale Now, with proceeds to benefit Mission Mississippi
Jackson, Miss. (July 2, 2014) – On Sunday, July 27, Universal Pictures will hold an exclusive red carpet screening of the James Brown biopic Get on Up at Grandview Cinema in Madison. Mississippi native and Get on Up director Tate Taylor and Chadwick Boseman, the film’s star, will be in attendance.
In his follow-up to the four-time Academy Award®-nominated blockbuster The Help, Taylor directs 42’s Boseman as James Brown in Get on Up. Based on the incredible life story of the Godfather of Soul, the film will give a fearless look inside the music, moves and moods of Brown, taking audiences on the journey from his impoverished childhood to his evolution into one of the most influential figures of the 20th century. Boseman is joined in the drama by Nelsan Ellis, Dan Aykroyd, Viola Davis, Craig Robinson, Octavia Spencer, Lennie James, Tika Sumpter and Jill Scott.
Academy Award® winner Brian Grazer (A Beautiful Mind, 8 Mile) produces for Imagine Entertainment, with Mick Jagger and Victoria Pearman (Shine a Light) producing under their Jagged Films banner. Imagine’s Erica Huggins (Flightplan) also serves as a producer on Get on Up, while Taylor produces under his Wyolah Films label. Peter Afterman, Trish Hofmann, Jez Butterworth, John Butterworth, John Norris and Anna Culp serve as executive producers.
Get on Up was filmed over a 60-day period in various Mississippi locations—including Jackson and Natchez—with additional time allotted for pre- and post-production. Producers of the film worked with the state’s WIN Job Centers to hire Mississippians as extras and as qualified crew members.
The red carpet event begins at 2:00 p.m. with screenings starting at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are on sale now and available for purchase in two packages:
The Director’s Package includes a reserved seat for a private screening of Get on Up with Taylor and Boseman, refreshments during the movie, a limited-edition commemorative poster and a post-screening reception hosted by Governor Phil Bryant and First Lady Deborah Bryant. Tickets for the Director’s Package are $200 per person.
The Individual Screening Package includes the screening of Get on Up, refreshments during the movie and a limited-edition commemorative poster. Tickets for the Individual Screening Package are $50 per person.
There are a limited number of tickets available, and proceeds from ticket sales will benefit Mission Mississippi (www.missionmississippi.net). To purchase tickets online, please visit www.getonupjackson.com. Tickets are also available for purchase by cash or credit card at the Mississippi Coliseum in Jackson. For more information, please call (601) 353-0603 or visit the Coliseum Box Office.
To see the official movie trailer for Get on Up, visit www.getonupmovie.com.
Hear a new version of "Born in the USA" and this week's new releases...
Voter ID would secure the integrity of elections, they said. Voter ID would prevent election fraud, they said.
Yet, in the first election where voter ID was used in Mississippi, complaints of voter fraud among Republicans have been rampant.
Incidentally, none of the the accusations spelled out in a lawsuit filed yesterday over the GOP primary runoff for U.S. Senate have anything to do with voter impersonation, which voter ID was designed to stop.
Also, interestingly, a lot of the top Republican officials hollerin about voter fraud have made nary a peep about the the allegations that have surfaced about vote buying in the race in the race between U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran and state Sen. Chris McDaniel, who also chairs the Senate Elections Committee.
Where's Delbert? Haley? Phil Bryant? (All three are Cochran supporters, by the way)
Brandon Jones of the Mississippi Democratic Trust posed a similar question in a statement sent to the press on Monday: "The citizens of this state were sold a package of voting laws by leaders who told us that their main concern was election integrity. These leaders, like Secretary of State Hosemann, now have an opportunity to show that all the talk about protecting the vote wasn't politics as usual."
I did a quick search and found these examples of GOP officials over the years talking about protecting the integrity of the elections:
"I believe that anyone who understands (like I do) that there is voter fraud occurring in our elections throughout the state and who does not support meaningful voter reforms to help clean up that system is part of the problem instead of part of the solution. … The problem is real and a strong Voter ID law is part of the solution."
—State Sen. Joey Fillingane, Y'all Politics op-ed October 2012
“This legislation is about protecting the integrity of Mississippi’s elections. This legislation is a direct result of the majority of Mississippians expressing their desire for a constitutional voter ID requirement in the state. We want everyone to participate in the election process, and we want that process to be fair and secure.”
—Gov. Phil Bryant, May 2012
"Voter ID is not about intimidation; it is simply about integrity and having a fair and honest election."
— Pete Smith, spokesman for Gov. Haley Barbour, 2004
"We need voter ID and we can't stop until we get it. … We need to continue to prosecute those who steal your vote."
— Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, Neshoba Democrat, July, 2009