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Babin bill targets voter fraud (VIDEO)

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Babin ParadeCALEB FORTENBERRY | TCB File Photo - Rep. Brian Babin in the 2020 annual Tyler County Dogwood Festival Parade.

By Chris Edwards

WASHINGTON, DC – Rep. Brian Babin (R-Woodville) introduced a bill during the first week of December to tackle voter fraud, specifically regarding ballots cast of deceased individuals.

HR 8830 or the You Must Be Alive to Vote Act, was written by Babin and addresses allegations that have emerged in the wake of November’s general election that ballots were cast absentee from deceased voters. “The right to vote is one of the most vital pillars of our democracy,” Babin said in a news release. “The ease with which someone is able to steal the ballot of a deceased person and cast an illegitimate vote should disturb, alarm and outrage every American citizen, no matter what side of the aisle they sit on.”

Babin summarized the bill and spoke to concerns with the issue during an interview with One America News network. He said it was “sad to say, but a necessary item we have to introduce [the bill.]”

“We don’t have an open and transparent election process,” he said during the interview, and cited public distrust of the election process as part of the rationale for the bill, which now has eight co-sponsors in the House.

If passed, the bill will prevent any states or counties that do not annually check their voter lists against the Social Security Administration’s most recent death records in order to purge them of deceased residents from receiving federal funds from the Department of Transportation or the Department of Education.

In Tyler County, the office of the County Clerk regularly checks the obituaries in the Tyler County Booster to cancel voters on the rolls.

County Clerk Donece Gregory said that every county in Texas has a different method, and in Tyler County, since she is also the voter registrar, whenever someone dies in the county, her office is sent an abstract of the death so there is documentation on file in order to cancel that voter. Gregory said the same thing happens in other counties, whenever a Tyler County resident dies outside the county.

“If someone dies in the hospital in Beaumont, for example, on a monthly basis, Jefferson County will send an abstract of that death to us,” Gregory said.

As far as any deceased persons’ ballots being cast in Tyler County, Gregory said it has never happened that she was aware of. There have been, however, voters who have died after their ballots were cast, and those ballots were counted, as the voters were alive when they voted.

Ultimately, with deceased persons, Gregory said as long as her office has some type of documentation, they will be able to cancel them.

If Babin’s bill becomes law, the penalized counties or states found to be in violation, would be barred from receiving funds from the aforementioned agencies, but Babin said they would not be stopped from law enforcement-related funding at the federal level.

“All elected officials, from your local city council member to your U.S. President, have an obligation to obey the law and prevent fraud in our elections, and Congress should not be awarding taxpayer dollars to any counties or states that refuse to do the job they swore to do,” Babin said.

Babin said during the OAN interview that there are claims of dead people being registered to vote in South Florida being investigated. Similar claims have emerged in other parts of the country since Election Day. The claim has been made in past presidential elections, as well.

“We better get this right or the consequences to our free, democratic republic will be dire,” Babin said.

Video of Rep. Babin Explaining HR 8830 on Fox News

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Holidays are time of year to address apostrophe usage (TOP 10 GALLERY)

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Photo ApostropheCHRIS EDWARDS | PCPC To pluralize potato, it’s just “potatoes,” not what you see on this sign.

By Chris Edwards

Think of the following series of words as they form sentences as a public service announcement, and one that, no offense, many of you need to read n’ heed.

I am sick and tired of incorrect apostrophe usage, and as we are into the holiday season, it is a great time to try and set some folks on the correct path with regard to this most egregious of grammatical sins.

Seeing apostrophes used incorrectly is many folks’ kryptonite, and for me, it’s a thing that makes me cringe and wonder where the offending party was in second grade when this was taught.

I can’t count the number of times I’ve decided to not darken the door of an establishment due to signage with abused apostophes, or even the number of serious/official/informative/business e-mails that I could not take seriously due to the same factor.

Within the English language, the purpose an apostrophe serves is to indicate possession or the omission of letters or numbers, such as in a contraction or an abbreviated year (e.g. “can’t” and “class of ‘99,” respectively.)

The apostrophe also was apparently the favorite punctuation mark of the late, great Frank Zappa, as he named one of his best-known albums after it.

If you are making out Christmas cards, or having address labels printed off, and let’s say your surname is Anderson, well here’s how to proceed: if you want to send your cards out on behalf of your entire family unit, the card and/or the label should read “From the Andersons,” NOT “From the Anderson’s.”

Just think of all the times you might have received a Christmas letter or card with a label that read “Love, the Campbell’s,” or the number of those signs you might have seen in front of someone’s house reading “The Fulton’s” or “The Smith’s, Est. 2005.”

When as a family, you are wishing someone else a Merry Christmas, there is no possession indicated in that message, and there should be no apostrophe. Adding that apostrophe only complicates things, and as stated earlier, it’s really annoying to a lot of people.

Unfortunately, as basic grammar skills seem out of the reach of many folks in the hyperactive click-click-post environment we inhabit in 2020, the abuse of apostrophes doesn’t end with the incorrect pluralization of names. Just the other day, I saw a posting from someone trying to rent out a house, and they made note of how there were “no dog’s” allowed of prospective tenants. In a reply to an inquiry on the post, the original poster used “dog’s” about 20 times.

So, not only does that look weird, it just does not make any sense and it is just plain wrong (as well as confusing.) Simply adding an “s” onto most words pluralizes it.

As some of you might know from reading my scrawlings, I’m something of a connoisseur of good Texas barbecue. Here’s a quick story that proves the power of grammar. Once, out near Fort Worth I happened upon a ‘cue joint off the highway. They could have had the best smoked meats in the known universe, but the menu, which was posted up on the wall above a window where patrons ordered food, was full of “rib’s” and “link’s” and even “sandwich’s.” Oh, the horror! Again, the barbecue might’ve been legit, but I could not get past that menu and turned tail in hopes of finding another fine Texas ‘cue joint without such an unappetizing menu.

If we can end this year on a positive note, let it be one that finds us steering away from this horrendous habit of misusing and abusing apostrophes.

So if you remember anything, remember that during this holiday season (and every season) last names do not require an apostrophe to become plural, nor do nouns.


#10. These Performances Own!

10An oldie, but a goodie here – even major-label recording star Laci Kaye Booth wasn’t immune to concert promoters abusing apostrophes to promote shows back in the day.


#9. Cool font, but totally ruined

9Too nifty of a font for such a grammar sin.


#8. You Can Find it All Here

8If the guy’s name was “Trade Day,” this might work, but we doubt such is the case.


#7. Cool Look, But...

7.2The “h” dripping an apostrophe might look cool on this display, but there’s nothing cool about misusing apostrophes, folks.


#6. Again, Cool Look, But That Copy Though

6Hmmmm…the “professional” aspect of this is suspect.


#5. Grammar Allergies

5For those who have allergies to such things (misused apostrophes, that is, not pecans.)


#4. A Pattern for Sure

4Another example of a pattern of how the poor apostrophe is misused.


#3. A Side of Grammatical Errors

3Everything on this menu comes with a side of abused apostrophe. How unappetizing!


#2. Behind This Door

2What do only the employees possess that made this sign necessary?


#1. Didn’t They Learn Anything from the Dan Quayle debacle?

1So confusing! First off, to pluralize “potato,” simply add an “e” and an “s,” but questions abound. First – What is the one potato “by”? Second – $799 bucks is a lot for two potatoes.

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The Great American Smokeout

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SmokeoutFILE PHOTO national great american smokeout logo


LUFKIN - Did you know that tobacco use is the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the United States?

Each year, smoking accounts for 443,000 premature deaths and according to the American Cancer Society thousands of non-smokers die as a result of exposure to secondhand smoke.

Nov. 19 is the Great American Smokeout and there is no better time than now to quit the use of any tobacco product.

Beyond the health hazards of smoking to consider, there is also the financial cost to think about. In 2009, the Federal Tobacco Tax Increase added an additional 62 cents to the price of each pack of cigarettes.

According to The Coalition for Tobacco Free Kids, a pack-a-day smoker spends around $2,000 a year on cigarettes. With the rising cost of tobacco and the current economy, this would be the perfect time to finally quit for good.

Beyond the extra savings on cigarettes, quitting smoking could also save you on the cost of extra medical expenses, doctor visits, medications, and other health issues associated with the use of tobacco and secondhand smoke.

It takes the average person multiple attempts to quit for good, but you can beat the odds with help and support. Smokers who have support are more successful at quitting smoking than those who go it alone.

You can call the American Cancer Society Quitline at 1-800-227-2345 to receive information and support.

The Coalition of Angelina, Polk, and San Augustine counties offers free virtual cessation support.

For more information, go to www.project-quit.org. You can also contact the Region 5 Prevention Resource Center for information on cessation support by calling 1-844-772-3483. Join the millions who will make Thursday, Nov. 19 a tobacco-free day.

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