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7 Things: ‘Border bill’ fails, everyone feigns surprise; gambling, school choice battle begins; and more…

7. Lying about book bans will get you a lot of attention and that comes in handy for Lavar Burton, who is famous for reading books for 3-year-olds on public television. Burton was booked on Jimmy Kimmel’s Late Night Show to present “Why Did They Ban This Book?” about a book mistakenly placed and then removed from that list because a computer program flagged the author’s last name of “Gay” in an Alabama library, but the book was never banned or removed.

6. American journalists against journalism (except when they try to do it) will be delighted that anti-free speech advocates in Europe want to sanction Tucker Carlson for interviewing Russian President Vladimir Putin and place a travel ban on the former Fox News host. Politicians, including failed politicians like Hillary Clinton, joined the media in screeching about how Republicans love Russia again, ignoring how wrong they were the last time they went down this path.

5. The coming enforcement of the Alabama Literacy Act is worrying the leadership of Alabama schools, so Alabama State Superintendent Eric Mackey is seeking more assistance with helping third-graders read. Struggling third-graders may get some help in the next budget but the full impact of the law will be felt much sooner than the next budget goes into effect.

4. State Treasurer Young Boozer says Birmingham-Southern is to blame for their financial woes, but too many lawmakers want to blame him for not approving a $30 million loan from the state. Now, legislators seek to remove him from the process and put an unelected education bureaucrat in charge of that decision.

3. The long-awaited proposed gambling legislation that is now officially out proposes as many as 10 casinos (24% tax rate), lottery, sports betting (17% tax rate), enforcement measures, statewide gambling regulatory commission, and a healthy dose of protectionism. The revenue from the lottery would go to the Education Trust Fund and the other gambling revenue would go to the General Fund. The total expected revenue could be over a billion dollars a year.

2. Kellyanne Conway will be in Alabama on Friday to be the keynote at the ALGOP’s winter meeting and her company has polled Alabama voters on gambling and 74% of those polled said they support gaming in the state, this included, “having a statewide lottery, casinos, and sports betting.” And 52% of those polled strongly supported gaming and the support goes up as a reference to the $2.5 billion the state could gain in revenue from the lottery over the next 10 years.  

1. To the surprise of no one, the border bill failed 49-50 with the usual suspects in the GOP voting for it. The media and their Democrats are still having an aneurism over the failure claiming the border is open now because of Republicans after claiming the border hasn’t been open for 3 years. Now Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) is attempting to pass a foreign aid-only bill, that has no chance of passing without actual border enforcement measures. And the Biden administration is now threatening to release more illegals into the country unless Republicans cave.

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Dale Jackson is a thought leader for Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 5-9 a.m. weekdays on WVNN, on Talk 99.5 from 10-11 a.m., and on Talk Radio 103.9 FM/730AM WUMP from noon to 1 p.m.

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