Weekly Round-Up

Desantis’ Proposed Budget Includes A Tax Cut For Gas Stoves

Governor Ron DeSantis has added a measure that would eliminate sales tax on gas ranges, the “Framework for Freedom” budget plan. The Republican governor announced that the Biden administration was targeting gas stoves. Destntis add that Florida wants you to be able to buy those “free of charge from the state of Florida for taxes.”

The recent controversy surrounding gas stoves has given the Biden administration another political hot point. Earlier this month, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commissioner Richard Trumka called for the prohibition of gas stoves after labeling them a “hidden threat.” In response to these claims, Trumpka subsequently tweeted that he had no plans to “coming for anyone’s gas stoves.”

China’s Use A Balloon To Spy

Meteorologists, amateur observers, and the military keep an eye on the putative Chinese spy balloon, which was initially observed over Billings, Montana, on February 1.

It was spotted drifting above northwestern Missouri and the Kansas City region on Friday. Multiple complaints of a huge balloon visible on the horizon have been sent to the National Weather Service. 

Spy Balloon No. 2 From China

The Pentagon said on Friday night that they had seen a second Chinese surveillance balloon traveling over Latin America.

According to CNN, it is still unknown whose nation the balloon is above in the region, but it does not appear to be traveling in the direction of the United States.

Trump And Other GOPs Have Called For The United States To “Shoot Down” The Chinese Surveillance Balloon.

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While Beijing urged calm, former president Donald Trump and an increasing number of GOP legislators on Friday called on the U.S. to shoot down a suspected Chinese spy balloon.

“SHUT THE BALLOON DOWN!” Trump tweeted on his Truth account.

Later in the day, the Pentagon released a statement saying that U.S. authorities had contemplated shooting down the balloon in response to the unnamed threat but ultimately concluded that it posed no danger to American citizens either in the air or on the ground. In addition, some worried firing the balloon might endanger those below due to falling debris.

It’s huge enough that “any possible debris field would be significant and potential civilian casualties, deaths, or severe property damage,” Air Force Brig. Gen. Patrick Ryder, a spokesman for the Pentagon, told reporters.

Massive Explosion In Billings, Montana

Reports of an explosion over Billings, Montana, where a Chinese surveillance balloon had been floating for days, are unsubstantiated at this time. The cargo of the rogue balloon is estimated to be the equivalent of two to three school buses. However, there have been no official reports confirming this. 

There have been rumors of a massive show of air power over Montana.

Screen Shot: Twitter- The Free Speech Forum

Blinken Cancels China Visit 

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After a suspected Chinese surveillance balloon was spotted traveling over the United States in what Washington called a “clear infringement” of U.S. sovereignty, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken postponed a visit to China that was scheduled to begin on Friday.

Biden was informed on Tuesday about the balloon flying over the United States. According to White House spokesman Karine Jean-Pierre there was an agreement that traveling to China was inappropriate at this point in time.

At a press conference on Friday, Blinken said he had told Wang Yi, director of China’s Central Commission for Foreign Affairs, that the incident on the eve of his trip was an “irresponsible act” by China but that Washington remained committed to engagement and he would visit when conditions allowed.

The focus, according to Blinken, is on settling the present situation, and he would not commit to a certain date for when he would travel to China. He said that the lines of communication would be kept open between Washington and China. Blinken stated that the first step is removing the surveillance asset from “our air space.”

N. Korea Issues Nuclear War Threat to the U.S.

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There are worries about World War 3 due to North Korea’s dire threat that they will respond to any military action taken by the U.S. with the “most overwhelming nuclear force.”

It follows accusations by Kim Jong-un’s government that U.S. military drills with South Korea crossed an “extreme red line.”

On February 1, U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said the United States was strengthening its effort through joint training and operational planning with South Korea. Austin added that more advanced military assets, such as fighter jets and aircraft carriers, will be deployed to the Korean Peninsula.

The Biden Administration Releases Terrorists From Guantanamo Bay

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Twenty years after his detention for involvement in terrorist operations, including the deadly Indonesia bombing, a former al Qaeda courier was freed from Guantánamo Bay by the Biden administration on Thursday.

Approximately a year after the completion of his term, Majid Khan was freed in Belize. The Washington Post stated that the delay in his release from Guantánamo, where he was being held as a “high-value prisoner,” was due to the difficulties of finding a nation willing to accept him.

In a statement, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Khan’s release was part of a deliberate and rigorous process focused on appropriately lowering the inmate population at Guantánamo Bay.

DeSantis Pulls Liquor Permit For Orlando Club That Hosted Drag Show For Children

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Florida governor Ron DeSantis has ordered the bar’s liquor license cancellation because it sponsored a children-friendly drag show.

On Friday, DeSantis filed a 6-count complaint against the Orlando Philharmonic Foundation Inc. with the state’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation, alleging that the organization exposed kids to obscene activities at a drag show in December.

The DeSantis administration had already informed the venue that it was to enforce a strict no-children policy for the event. The letter warned that the company’s license might be revoked or other penalties imposed if it did not comply.

Despite DeSantis’s advance notification, the foundation continued to allow minors inside, with just a notice reading; although we are not prohibiting admission to anybody under 18, please be aware some may view the context as inappropriate for those under 18, posted on the front entrance. The letter claims that several kids who attended the event were too young to attend legally.

Bryan Griffin, the governor’s press secretary, told the media outlet that DeSantis “always follows through” on his promises because he stands to defend the innocence of children.