Published: Fri, 21 Oct 2016 13:12:32 +0000
Last Build Date: Fri, 21 Oct 2016 13:12:32 +0000Copyright: Copyright 2005 - Steal what you want
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 20:35:11 +0000
With the help of YOU, three Daily Kos endorsed candidates surpassed their opponents in fundraising during the third quarter specifically because of contributions made by Daily Kos readers. Alaska's Steve Lindbeck, California's Doug Applegate and Pennsylvania's Christina Hartman all bested their competitors, but they couldn't have done so without your help!
Daily Kos' Steve Lindbeck: $352,000
Rep. Don Young: $323,000
DK raised: $44,000
Daily Kos’ Doug Applegate: $605,000
Rep. Darrell Issa: $549,000
DK raised: $64,000
Daily Kos’ Christina Hartman: $352,000
Lloyd Smucker: $324,000
DK raised: $52,000
Thanks to you, all these candidates and others stand a much, much better chance of getting elected.
Fri, 21 Oct 2016 12:31:34 +0000One more chance to make you smarter for the weekend! But all I’ve got to work with is Donald Trump! So we’ll have to bring in another ringer: Josie Duffy Rice. She’ll make you smart whether you like it or not! (But we know you do!) Listen LIVE right here at 9:00 AM ET! Oh, right! It’s probably time to craft a new shtick for this middle part, here. This is the bit where I remind you that we need your help in order to make a living at this. If the show is something you enjoy, or just want people to think it is, why not pitch in and keep alive our hopes of one day fully justifying to our families the time we spend on it?* You can make a one-time donation, or subscribe via PayPal or Patreon to provide ongoing, monthly support! Not sold yet? How about a FREE SAMPLE of our show, in convenient YouTube format? Like what you see? Why? It’s just a logo! How about what you hear? Well, then, consider subscribing to our YouTube channel! Our goal is to have so many of you listen to the show each day via YouTube, that we’ll then punish you by running ads at the beginning, in exchange for even more money, but from other people’s wallets! x YouTube Video YouTube | iTunes | LibSyn | Support the show: Patreon; PayPal; PayPal Subscription Wow, that debate. What can you say? If you are still stunned speechless, relax, David Waldman and KITM will take care of the talking for the next two hours. Greg Dworkin looks at all the data, to better tell you who might win November 8, or he might feel like keeping you in suspense. Who knows, but Hillary Clinton did win the final debate. Viewers haven’t quite had time to fully absorb last night, but that isn’t keeping battleground states from flipping to blue. Now that Donald’s got no strings to hold him down, it’s time for revenge. That, whining, and incredible denial should keep Trump’s days filled for the next couple of weeks. Pity his minions. Then there is Ann Coulter. Donald Trump is even losing close friends! He and Roger Ailes no longer speak, and his porn superstar on the side got married. Sad! Weaning us from Trump, David determines how the “Advise and Consent” clause could, and could not, be used to appoint Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland. (Thanks again to Scott Anderson for the show summary!) Need more info on how to listen? Find it below the fold. [...]
Fri, 21 Oct 2016 11:43:45 +0000
This is why we can’t have nice things. Here is Donald Trump, ruining the Al Smith Memorial Dinner (from Erin Glorida Ryan at The Daily Beast):
Thursday’s Al Smith Memorial Dinner offered America the opportunity to take a desperate breath from the trash swamp America’s been drowning in for the last year and a half. It delivered, but then again, 45 minutes of footage of a stranger yelling would have been more enjoyable than most of the 2016 presidential campaign. [..]
The Republican nominee for president hit some high notes, like the plagiarism joke about wife Melania’s Republican National Convention speech, which was cribbed in part from a speech Michelle Obama had given. But then he gestured to his wife, ordering her to stand up while the crowd cheered, a bizarre break in momentum. He further lost the crowd with a joke about Hillary Clinton hating Catholics that was met with boos. Then came another one about Donna Brazile sharing all of the jokes from the dinner in advance. More boos. Then one about Hillary Clinton destroying Haitian villages, which was borderline inscrutable and met with silence. If Trump is half as effective at bombing ISIS as he is at bombing stand-up routines, he’s ready to be commander-in-chief.
Charley Lanyon at New York Magazine:
Ever the entertainer, Donald Trump was probably responsible for the biggest laugh of the night but also the event’s loudest boos — until this year booing was unheard of at the dinner. [...] Trump quickly lost the room when he switched to a pointed attack on Clinton, calling her corrupt. [...]
And the unprecedented booing only got louder when Trump dropped this ill-advised joke: “Here she is in public, pretending not to hate Catholics.”
Fri, 21 Oct 2016 03:01:40 +0000Mike Farrell, co-chair emeritus of Human Rights Watch in California, serves as president of Death Penalty Focus and as a member of the advisory board of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty. He is the national spokesperson for Concern America, an international refugee aid and development organization. At Truthdig he writes—California’s Proposition 62 Can End the Suffering Caused by—and the Expense of—the Death Penalty: California’s death penalty system has failed. We know the death penalty is racist in application and is used primarily against the poor and the poorly defended. It entraps and kills the innocent along with the guilty and is hideously expensive. Any of these facts should be reason enough to do away with the death penalty, yet attempts to make it meet constitutional requirements have continued for nearly 40 years. As Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer said last year, “Despite the … Court’s hope for fair administration of the death penalty, 40 years of further experience make it increasingly clear that the death penalty is imposed arbitrarily, i.e., without the ‘reasonable consistency’ legally necessary to reconcile its use with the Constitution’s commands.” California’s 38-year attempt to make the death penalty constitutional has left us with more than 1,000 death verdicts and 13 executions—at a total cost of $5 billion. That breaks down to $384 million per execution. California now has the largest death-row population in the United States, with almost 750 men and women waiting an average of 25 to 30 years for the resolution of their constitutionally required appeals. As a result, approximately 10 times as many on our state’s death row have died of natural causes or suicide than have been executed. A tragic result of this awful, grinding process is the long-term incarceration and death of innocents. Ralph Thomas, a homeless African-American man, and Dennis Lawley, a diagnosed schizophrenic, both died after years on death row before their claims of innocence were verified. Proposition 62 will replace the death penalty with sentences of life without parole. It also will require inmates to work (which they cannot do on death row) and pay 60 percent of their earnings to a general victims’ restitution fund. The state’s Legislative Analyst’s Office says Proposition 62 will save Californians $150 million every year. Currently, family members of victims have to relive the horror of a loved one’s murder through years of appellate hearings. If Proposition 62 is passed, guilty parties will be put behind bars until they die, providing finality and ending the torture endured by victims’ families. Eliminating the death penalty also gives convicts who aren’t guilty the chance to prove their innocence. Proposition 66, on the other hand, is another in a series of lame attempts to fix an irreparable death-penalty system. The proposition imposes additional levels of appeal, which lengthen the process. It attempts to limit the California Supreme Court to five years to resolve appeals that now take an average of 12, but it contains no provision to enforce such a limit. As Proposition 66 authors should know, limiting the court’s deliberation time simply would mean making more mistakes and killing more innocent people. Our state maintains a list of attorneys willing to accept appointment to handle appeals. Some are trained for and willing to accept capital—death penalty—appeals while others are not. Proposition 66 requires any of these attorneys, whether trained for capital defense or not, to accept death cases or be removed from the list. Forcing unwilling or untrained attorneys to handle the complex issues involved with capital defense guarantees costly, perhaps fatal, errors and ensures further appeals based on “ineffective assistance of counsel.” Proposition 66 also pretends to save the state money by moving some costs to the counties, an unfair burden counties can[...]
Fri, 21 Oct 2016 02:41:32 +0000
Since the release of the Access Hollywood audio tape in which Donald Trump can be heard bragging about sexual assault, and followed by the accusations of 10 women who claim Trump did just that, phones for women’s crisis centers have been ringing off the hook.
The Rape Crisis Center hotline, a D.C. resource that typically receives between 75 and 100 calls each week, saw a 20 percent increase after The Washington Post published a 2005 tape on Oct. 8 that showed Donald Trump bragging about grabbing women’s genitals without their permission.
Trump’s remarks and the accusations have done two things. One, they provide women with language to name their experience, experts say, and two, the public discussion of sexual assault has reminded them of what many went through years ago and buried.
Women who called the rape crisis hotline to talk about unwanted touches — and the pain they inflicted — largely drove the call spike, (Indira) Henard said, (the center’s executive director). The remarks from Trump's accusers had dredged up memories that Americans only recently started to develop a vocabulary to describe, she noted.
Well, thanks to Trump, women’s vocabularies are expanding hand over fist and will no doubt soon include words like “sue” and “settlement.”
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Wed, 19 Oct 2016 10:49:26 +0000
Reactions to Monday’s apology from the International Association of Chiefs of Police regarding the profession’s treatment of people of color are still coming in. Terrence M. Cunningham, president of the group and the current chief of the Wellesley, Massachusetts police department, told attendees at the organization’s San Diego convention that it was his hope that law enforcement and communities of color could break the “historic cycle of mistrust and build a better and safer future for us all.”
Events over the past several years,” Cunningham said, “have caused many to question the actions of our officers and has tragically undermined the trust that the public must and should have in their police departments. …The history of the law enforcement profession is replete with examples of bravery, self-sacrifice, and service to the community. At its core, policing is a noble profession.”
But Cunningham added, “At the same time, it is also clear that the history of policing has also had darker periods.” He cited laws enacted by state and federal governments which “have required police officers to perform many unpalatable tasks. … While this is no longer the case, this dark side of our shared history has created a multigenerational — almost inherited — mistrust between many communities of color and their law enforcement agencies.”
Cunningham continued, “While we obviously cannot change the past, it is clear that we must change the future…For our part, the first step is for law enforcement and the IACP to acknowledge and apologize for the actions of the past and the role that our profession has played in society’s historical mistreatment of communities of color.”
Several veteran organizers spoke around the issue of police terrorism and Cunningham’s words. Their responses were short, unsweetened, and to the point.
Fri, 21 Oct 2016 02:01:31 +0000
Donald Trump spent much of Wednesday night’s debate in a pique of incoherent criticism over America’s response to ISIS and the rest of the Middle East mess left behind by a previous administration. Half a world away, men and women are risking their lives and limbs trying to straighten out and clean up some of the worst parts of that mess, with thousands more innocent lives hanging in the balance.
Iraqi and coalition troops pushed through communities on the outskirts of Mosul this week, threading their way carefully past IEDs, suicide bombers, and snipers, in another day of heavy fighting against the Islamic State. There are reports that ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is in the beleaguered city. If so, he is in real trouble as Mosul is now surrounded in a tightening noose, and there are unconfirmed claims that some of his own forces may be turning against him:
The Iraqi news outlet stated that the Commander of ISIS Islamic Police, Abu Othman, staged a coup attempt and attacked four headquarters of ISIS in Mosul. In response, ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi summoned the so-called al-Assra army to suppress the coup and kill seven leaders of ISIS Islamic Police who were allegedly involved.
Mosul was taken by ISIS in 2014, and the Caliphate was announced from the city’s historic Grand Mosque shortly after it fell into militant hands. Iraqi forces backed up with allied air power and special forces have been systematically retaking ISIS-controlled territory in northern and western Iraq ever since. Mosul is by far the largest city held by ISIS and its recapture is seen by many analysts as a death blow against the group’s violent ambitions.
Reports are that al-Baghdadi and other high ranking members are trapped inside and urging a fight to the death:
The terror cult's founder is believed to be holed up with ISIS bomb maker Fawzi Ali Nouimeh – leading the fears the twisted jihadis are prepared to fight to the bitter death to impress their self-proclaimed caliph. Initial reports suggest the death cult has dug a series of complex tunnels and laid out booby traps to ensure maximum casualties when Iraqi and Peshmerga forces attempt to reclaim the city.
Wed, 19 Oct 2016 22:19:46 +0000
Former Paradise Police Officer Patrick Feaster was convicted of involuntary manslaughter on Oct. 18. A jury in Butte County—in northern California, about two and a half hours from Reno, Nevada—deliberated for one full day before finding Feaster guilty in the death of 26-year-old Andrew Thomas on Thanksgiving evening in 2015. Thomas died from his wound—he was shot in the neck—on Dec. 19. The seven men and five women relied heavily on footage from Feaster’s dash cam. The footage, available below the fold, is graphic. As noted at the time:
”Feaster, who had been sitting in his patrol car, suddenly takes off on a call. A car has left the Canteena Bar and is speeding down the highway. Feaster turns onto a street where the brake lights of the car can be seen off in the distance. As Feaster speeds along, the car ahead of him suddenly runs into the median and flips over. Now turned onto its driver’s side, the car comes to a stop and Darien Ehorn, who had been a passenger, is lying in front of the vehicle.”
“As Feaster approaches the vehicle a man, presumably the driver, comes up through the passenger side window and attempts to get out of the car. That’s when Officer Feaster draws his weapon, aims, and shoots Andrew Thomas in the neck. As Thomas falls back down into the vehicle, Feaster returns his weapon to his holster and moves to the car to confront Thomas—who he has just shot, by the way.”
“On an audio recording, Feaster says the man in the car “refuses to get out.” He does not physically check on Ehorn, Thomas’s wife, lying on the ground just inches from him. The officer neglects to tell first responders that he shot the guy they were trying to extract from the car until about 10 minutes later, and he didn’t tell his commanding officer that tidbit of into until later, either.”
At the time, Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey elected not to file charges against Feaster, saying the shooting was accidental. Ramsey reversed himself in April of this year, charging Feaster with involuntary manslaughter. Feaster was thus ordered to stand trial. The trial began about two weeks ago and the jury began its deliberations on Oct. 17.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 14:46:40 +0000
Donald Trump might be sending out 3 AM tweets claiming debate victory and citing bogus internet polls, but let’s take a moment to look back at the Republican nominee’s own body language in the immediate moments after the debate. While Hillary Clinton warmly greeted people in the audience, flashing a wide smile and confidently moving around the crowd in her stunning suffragette-white pantsuit, Donald Trump was sulking on the stage, appearing to have completely run out of stamina.
His own body language is a dead giveaway that he knows he lost—and lost bigly.
Watch below as a stone-faced Trump greets his family on stage with an awkward no-kiss to Melania, and barely acknowledges the others:
Fri, 21 Oct 2016 01:01:25 +0000
Welcome back to your evening roundup of the day's Donald J. Trump campaign news. There's now less than three weeks to go, which is good. But the candidate we're tasked with keeping tabs on has gone entirely off the deep end, which continues to make our job more difficult.
The morning headlines today were unanimous; a major presidential nominee coyly refusing to affirm he'd respect the results of our American democracy if that democracy did not install him as its glorious leader did not go over well.
Trump, however, doubled down today—because that is what he does, telling the crowd at a Delaware rally that he "will totally accept the results of this great and historical presidential election ... if I win." That was one of two prepared statements Trump's campaign provided him. The second was similarly insulting.
Now that we are all suitably unsurprised by Trump continuing to be a self-absorbed, pompous boor to the very end, on to the rest of it.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 16:18:08 +0000
Fox News host Sean Hannity is all out auditioning to be chief correspondent of the loons once the new Trump-bart debuts. And first on the chopping block after Trump is roundly defeated by overwhelming majorities at the polls: Paul Ryan, whom Hannity called a "saboteur" of Trump's campaign. Allegra Kirkland writes:
Speaking to the Washington Post in the spin room after the final presidential debate, the devoted Donald Trump ally hinted that the intra-party war between far-right conservatives and their more moderate counterparts would continue regardless of who wins the presidential race on November 8.
Hannity told the Post that Ryan, who has offered only tepid support for the Republican nominee during the 2016 race, “needed to be called out and replaced.”
Nice! Ryan, who hasn't even had the guts to disavow Trump, is now responsible for the miserable failure of a campaign Trump has run. Sorry, Paul.
Hannity also had a lot of good ideas about members of the House Crazy Caucus who could unite the party (ahem) upon Ryan’s ouster: Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan (chair of the Crazy Caucus), North Carolina Rep. Mark Meadows (who devised the wildly popular 2013 government shutdown), and Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert! LOL. Gohmert! The wackiest of the wack jobs, who has called Hillary Clinton "mentally impaired." Speaker Gohmert! ROFLOL.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 19:16:26 +0000
About 2,000 educators across the Seattle area wore T-shirts to school on Oct. 19 proclaiming that “Black Lives Matter.” The action, which occurred throughout Seattle’s school districts, were in conjunction with rallies that were held before school began. Seattle’s KING5 news station covered the event:
The purpose of the day was to affirm that “black lives matter in the public schools,” according to organizers, who are members of Social Equality Educators, a group of educators within the Seattle teachers union. Teachers also wanted to show their support for John Muir Elementary, which had its “Black Men Uniting to Change the Narrative” event canceled last month after receiving a threat over teachers’ plans to wear Black Lives Matter shirts.
[ … ]
Teacher Diana Romero said she decided to wear a shirt “to support our black brothers and sisters in support for justice.” As a Latina, she said she has seen firsthand the unfair treatment of people of color by police officers.
“Black Lives Matter At School” wasn’t sponsored by the school district, but it coincides with Seattle Public Schools’ “day of unity,” aimed at bringing more attention to racial equity in education. The district said in a statement that it has asked students, family, staff and community members to “engage and join the conversation in our united efforts to eliminate opportunity gaps.” As a public institution, the district doesn’t take official positions on social or political movements, district spokesman Luke Duecy said in a statement earlier this week.
The action was endorsed by the Seattle Education Association, the Seattle council PTSA board, the Social Equality Educators, and the Seattle NAACP. Support from outside of the Washington area was also received, with more than 200 scholars and numerous racial/social justice activists who expressed their unity as well.
Wed, 19 Oct 2016 19:08:09 +0000
On behalf of House Majority PAC, the Democratic group Clarity Campaign Labs is out with a poll of California’s 10th Congressional District giving Democrat Michael Eggman a 46-45 lead over Republican Rep. Jeff Denham.
The sample gives Hillary Clinton a similar 41-40 edge in this Modesto seat. Obama won here 51-47 and the district is home to a large Latino population, so it’s a bit surprising the poll has Clinton underperforming. However, the district has a much smaller proportion of college-educated residents than the nation as a whole, so Donald Trump may actually have room to improve on Romney’s performance.
Until recently, there was little outside spending here, and Denham looked likely to win a fourth term. But a few weeks ago, House Majority PAC’s allies at the DCCC launched a $791,000 ad campaign for Eggman. The conservative Congressional Leadership Fund quickly committed a hefty $2 million to this seat as well. Denham pulled off a 53-47 win in 2012 against a highly-touted Democratic foe even while Obama was carrying his seat, so he still won’t be easy to beat. But with both sides spending here and this poll showing a tight contest, an upset isn’t so hard to envision.
Election Day is fast approaching, and we need all hands on deck. With the PCCC and Daily Kos, no matter where you live, you can call key voters in districts where progressive Democrats are in tight races. Click here to get started.
Wed, 19 Oct 2016 21:33:21 +0000
A federal judge in Texas declined to limit his earlier ruling placing a nationwide injunction on the Obama administration's mandate that public schools allow transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms consistent with their gender identity. Josh Gerstein writes:
In an order issued late Tuesday, U.S. District Court Judge Reed O'Connor made some changes to the ruling he issued in August at the request of 13 states opposed to the policy, but he left the Education Department unable to bring new cases enforcing transgender students' access to access to what he termed "intimate facilities" across the nation.
Justice Department lawyers had asked O'Connor to limit the injunction's effect to the 13 states who brought the suit, filed in federal court in Wichita Falls, Texas, about 140 miles northwest of Dallas. However, the judge maintained he had the legal authority to halt the policy nationwide.
One thing O'Connor did do was limit the application of his ruling to "intimate facilities," leaving open the possibility of enforcing prohibitions on other forms of discrimination against transgender students.
The Justice Department will likely appeal the ruling to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 14:01:25 +0000A recent Washington Post report finds that a mere 10 mega-donor individuals or couples are responsible for a staggering 20 percent of the $1.1 billion that super PACs had raised in the 2016 election cycle by the end of August. Following the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United ruling, these groups have been able to raise unlimited sums from individuals and corporations, but this fundraising total far exceeds the $853 million that Super PACs raised for all of 2012—and it doesn’t yet include the last two months of this year’s campaign. While most mega-donors lean heavily Republican, these top 10 had a mix of people giving to both parties. Chief among them for Democrats was environmentalist hedge-fund founder and Citizens United critic Tom Steyer. His net worth is approximately $1.6 billion, and he had given $38 million by the end of August. Las Vegas casino mogul Sheldon Adelson and his wife, Miriam, topped the list for Republicans, having given a combined $21.5 million. Sheldon Adelson is reportedly the world’s 22nd richest person, with a net worth of $32 billion dollars, roughly 20 times Steyer’s wealth. Independent Michael Bloomberg, the world’s eighth-richest person with an estimated net worth of $40 billion, has divided his $20.2 million between the two parties and various ballot measures. Conspicuously absent are Charles and David Koch, the two fossil fuel robber barons and frequent progressive boogeymen. However, the two brothers, who are tied for world’s ninth richest at nearly $40 billion each, have built up a massive fundraising network capable of spending hundreds of millions, rather than relying just on their own personal fortune. Many of the other top-10 mega-donors writing eight-figure checks unsurprisingly come from the world of finance and energy extraction, and it’s pretty clear what they’re getting for their money: a Republican Party completely beholden to their interests on deregulation. And even the Democratic Party often finds it needs these sorts of donors unless it wants to face a massive spending disparity. Citizens United isn’t responsible for everything wrong with our politics, but letting the ultra-rich dominate the conversation has done a lot of damage when their policy views are far out of sync with the general public’s. If every citizen’s voice should matter equally in a democracy, that simply cannot happen when one donor can write a check for tens of millions while most voters don’t—and many can’t—donate at all. Fortunately, if Democrats win the presidency and Senate in 2016, they are poised to install a new Supreme Court majority that could overturn Citizens United and allow us to start passing some meaningful new campaign finance restrictions. [...]
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 19:27:14 +0000
It's Thursday, October 20, and Day 249 since Justice Antonin Scalia died and Mitch McConnell decided no nominee would get any Senate attention: No meetings, no hearings, no votes. It's also Day 218 since Merrick Garland was nominated by President Obama to fill that vacancy.
Last night was the final presidential debate, one in which Donald Trump definitively proved that he is completely unfit to be president of the United States. But let's just focus on one part of it, on the part that matters here: the Supreme Court.
Asked about their overall vision for the court, Clinton and Trump diverged wildly. Clinton began by talking about what she'll focus on: "Namely, what kind of country are we going to be? What kind of opportunities will we provide for our citizens? What kind of rights will Americans have?"
Trump began by attacking a woman. "Something happened recently where Justice Ginsburg made some very inappropriate statements toward me and toward a tremendous number of people. Many, many millions of people that I represent and she was forced to apologize. And apologize she did. But these were statements that should never, ever have been made."
Then he got down to the key stuff. Or the key stuff for Fox News moderator Chris Wallace, anyway: guns and abortion. Because that's really what the Supreme Court is about in Republicanland. "The justices that I am going to appoint will be pro-life. They will have a conservative bent. They will be protecting the second amendment. They are great scholars in all cases and they're people of tremendous respect." Tremendous people who "will interpret the constitution the way the founders wanted it interpreted." Because Trump and only Trump can read the minds of the founders to determine that. He sure as hell isn't going to read anything they actually wrote to try to figure out their intentions. He'll let the Heritage Foundation do that work for him.
Wed, 19 Oct 2016 19:00:00 +0000
Quarterly fundraising reports for federal candidates, covering the period from July 1 to Sept. 30, were due at the Federal Elections Commission on Saturday night. Below is our list of fundraising numbers for House candidates in all key 2016 races, largely following the list of contests that Daily Kos Elections has rated as competitive. All numbers are in thousands. The chart, and an explanation of each column, can be found below.
Note: PA-09 candidate Art Halvorson is a Republican who won the Democratic primary as a write-in.
Wed, 19 Oct 2016 17:27:04 +0000The solar power companies of Florida said it. The Tampa Bay Times said it. The Miami Herald said it. The Orlando Sentinel said it. The League of Women Voters said it. The Green Party of Florida, the Libertarian Party of Florida, the Christian Coalition, the AFL-CIO, the Democratic Environmental Caucus of Florida, the Capital Young Republicans all said it. Al Gore said it. And now, an insider has said it, too, sort of. What they said is that constitutional Amendment 1—with the tricksy name of “Rights of Electricity Consumers Regarding Solar Energy Choice”—on the Florida ballot November 8 is a scam by the state’s electric utility companies, a misleading proposal masquerading as pro-solar. The utilities hope to get voters to support their effort to do what their utility counterparts did in Nevada: Undermine rooftop solar and “net metering” to maintain their monopoly and profits. The insider is Sal Nuzzo, a vice president at the James Madison Institute, which was hired by the state’s largest utilities. On a panel at the State Energy/Environment Leadership Summit in Nashville October 2, he described how the utility industry initiated and financed the amendment. He called it “an incredibly savvy maneuver” that “would completely negate anything they [pro-solar interests] would try to do either legislatively or constitutionally down the road.” Knowing how pro-solar Florida voters are—they proved it again in August when they voted overwhelmingly in favor of property tax breaks for people who install solar panels on their homes—Nuzzo said the utilities needed a means of leveraging that support in their favor. Which is how the amendment was born. It originally was meant to confuse matters by undercutting another amendment that actually would have favored solar consumers, but which didn’t get enough signatures to make the ballot. Nuzzo said in an interview after his talk gained some publicity that there was nothing deceptive about the decision to initiate Amendment One. Critics beg to differ. [...]
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 22:01:36 +0000
One of the stories of 2016 will be the effect of the non-white vote on races up and down the ballot. All early indications are all that voters of color are highly engaged and motivated, but most of that legwork hasn’t happened by accident. There are organizations all around the country working on registering, educating, and turning out those traditionally low-performing demographics. Today, we talk to Lizeth Chacón, an immigrant from Chihuaha, Mexico, who has been organizing in Colorado, not just around the election, but on the issues that can motivate these communities into becoming politically engaged.
1. Can you tell us a little bit about the Colorado People's Alliance, how it was formed, and the kind of work it does?
Colorado People’s Alliance (COPA) was founded the fall of 2015 to honor the legacy and shared histories of Rights for All People (RAP) and Colorado Progressive Coalition (CPC). Rights for All People was founded in 1995 by a group of attorneys and activists in response to the growing immigrant population as well as the growing anti-immigrant sentiment in the state of Colorado. Colorado Progressive Coalition was founded in 1996 to fight, build, and win progressive change for Colorado voices that refuse to be marginalized. Over the years, both CPC and RAP achieved victories in the areas of immigrant rights, healthcare access, transportation access, payday-lending reform, minimum wage, police accountability and more.
Colorado People’s Alliance works for low-income, people of color, immigrant and youth communities; we are battling corporate and moneyed interests, interests that are actively working to maintain and increase systems of oppression that are affecting our members and communities. COPA was created with the desire to radically change and expand grassroots organizing in Colorado. We are working to build a mass base, organize those most directly affected by the issues to lead not only on campaigns but on a bold new strategy for long term change. We will work to ensure our work is tied to a long-term agenda that helps us tilt the power to our side to ensure people are at the decision making table.
COPA is committed to community-led organizing that focuses on passing progressive polices for economic, immigrant, climate and racial justice by developing strong leaders, and creating a strong black-and-brown alliance in our state.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 21:45:50 +0000
President Obama campaigned for Hillary Clinton today in Miami, Florida, and, boy, did he deliver. In an relaxed, upbeat, and funny speech, Obama rallied an exuberant audience of Florida voters.
He told the audience "we got to do it big, we got to leave no doubt," because "the Donald is already whining that the vote's going to be rigged before the game is even over." And he joked that "this is just about him worried that he's losing." But then he gets serious, very serious.
This is more than just the usual standard lie. Because when you suggest rigging or fraud without a shred of evidence, when last night at the debate, Trump becomes the first major party nominee in American history to suggest that he will not concede despite losing the vote and then says today that he will accept the vote if he wins, that is not a joking manner.
I want everyone to pay attention here. That is dangerous. Because when you try to sow the seeds of doubt in people's minds about the legitimacy of our election, that undermines our democracy. Then you're doing the work of our adversaries for them. Because our democracy depends on people knowing that their vote matters. That those who occupy the seats of power were chosen by the people. Even when your preferred candidate loses, even when you are the one who is running and you lose, you've got to see the bigger picture and say that here in America, we believe in democracy and we accept the will of the people.
You can watch below. After last night's soul-crushing display from Trump, and his astounding display today, Obama's speech was a perfect antidote. But it had a critical message. What Donald Trump is doing is dangerous, and he has to be defeated so soundly it'll make his head spin.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 21:41:32 +0000
It's that time again. Obamacare enrollment season begins on November 1, with a new option for customers on Healthcare.gov: Simple Choice, six new standardized plans that will make comparing plans simpler.
Federal officials say the new option will simplify shopping under the Affordable Care Act by reducing variation among plans, and consumer advocates like the idea. The standardized options will be identified on HealthCare.gov with the label “Simple Choice.” […]
The standardized version of a midlevel silver plan has a $3,500 deductible, but primary care and specialty care visits, outpatient mental health services and prescription drugs are generally exempt from the deductible. In other words, consumers may face co-payments, but they do not have to meet the deductible before the insurance company starts to pay for such services.
On HealthCare.gov, the administration intends to introduce the idea of standardized options by describing Simple Choice as “the easiest way to shop for plans.”
“All Simple Choice plans in the same category (like Silver) have exactly the same core benefits, deductibles and co-payments,” states a message to be displayed on the federal website. “When viewing Simple Choice plans, you can focus on other important features that may be different: monthly premiums, additional services covered, doctor and hospital networks.”
This should definitely help reduce out of pocket costs for customers choosing these plans. The copayments are reasonable—$30 for primary care visits, $65 for specialist visits, $75 for urgent care and $15 for generic drugs. In other plans, full cost of those visits and prescriptions has to be paid by the customer until they've reached their deductible and at $3,500, many people won't reach that in a single year, making their insurance little better than just catastrophic coverage. There's still plenty to be done to make the Affordable Care Act truly affordable for everyone, but this is a smart interim solution—if enough insurance companies agree to offer these standardizes plans. They aren't required to do so.
But here's your friendly reminder that Republicans are still running on Obamacare repeal, from Trump on down. All of those 20 million people who have health insurance now because of the law? Poof. It's gone, and we're back to the bad old days.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 19:15:49 +0000
If there's one thing Marco Rubio can't escape, it's his continued support for Donald Trump. Patrick Murphy's latest ad starts with footage of Trump's rankest comments about being able to do "anything" to women and grab them by the "p***y," then cuts to a Rubio rally.
"We have to make sure that Donald wins this election," Rubio emphatically tells the crowd.
This ad caps a very good week for Murphy, who remains the underdog in the race. He finished off a clean sweep of the state's big four editorial endorsements with one from Rubio's hometown newspaper, the Miami Herald. Plus, a second poll this month put Murphy running behind Rubio by just two points. That's spitting distance. Overall, Rubio still leads by an average of nearly five points, but the gap could narrow as Hillary Clinton's hold on the state solidifies.
Finally, Trump's unwillingness to accept the outcome of this election was like a bomb going off last night in each one of these down-ballot races. Murphy's ad is poised to amplify Trump's self-destruction.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 14:34:07 +0000
The above Westside Armory ad, which appeared last weekend in casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson’s Las Vegas Review-Journal, capitalized on the mindset produced by the National Rifle Association’s years of crying wolf about gun-”grabbing.” It’s pretty much a no-brainer to sell more tactical firearms by ginning up the already overflowing paranoia of America’s conspiracy cohort, which believes Hillary Clinton is going to trash the Second Amendment and leave people defenseless. After all, this worked quite effectively when Barack Obama was running in 2008 and ever since. It’s money in the bank—gun sales peaked last year.
Bloomberg ran an article about the Westside Armory in February in which store owner Cameron Hopkins admitted that “fear sells so many guns,” adding that “In the end, I guess I’m just a capitalist.”
So for the Westside Armory, it’s just a matter of raking in more Benjamins. But given we now have people showing up at political rallies with similar fully loaded firearms slung across their backs or chests, it’s not hard to imagine the darker thoughts such an ad incites among Donald Trump’s red-hatted would-be militiamen. Particularly among the ferocious few who see the Republican candidate’s refusal to say he will accept the verdict of the voters on Election Day as a literal call to arms.
The secondary message in that ad, as we know all too well, is the one that has been spread for years by the NRA. Once a respectable organization, the gun manufacturers’ lobby is now led by extremists who keep claiming—despite decades of successful lobbying for loosened gun laws—that Americans’ right to self defense is under siege.
Most people who hear that message and agree just grumble and cast their votes accordingly while perhaps buying another 1,000 rounds of ammunition. But for some fraction, dreams of armed resistance egged on by Trump’s loser tantrums could very well move from armchair fantasy to fatalities.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 17:50:48 +0000
This is what happens when your party's presidential candidate is hemorrhaging votes so badly that his opponent's Super PAC turns its eyes down ballot. A brilliant ad comes forth to pinpoint what will become the most regrettable moment of GOP New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte's re-election campaign.
Asked during an October 3 debate whether she would point her children to Donald Trump as a role model, Ayotte responded, "Absolutely, I would do that."
Clinton Super PAC Priorities USA has now revisited that moment in a devastating ad called, "No Principles"—the PAC's very first down-ballot effort. Kelly Ayotte has put forward an impressive display of mental gymnastics trying to find a perfectly electable position vis-a-vis Donald Trump.
This ad renders all of those efforts moot. Given Trump's irredeemable tack over the past few weeks, "absolutely" will likely become Ayotte’s singular disqualifying moment of the race. Keep those ads coming.
Watch it below.
Election Day is fast approaching, and we need all hands on deck! With the PCCC and Daily Kos, no matter where you live, you can call key voters in districts where progressive Democrats are in tight races. Click here to get started.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 12:31:26 +0000
At this point, it’s looking pretty clear that Hillary Clinton is going to be the next president. The Daily Kos Elections model currently gives her a 95 percent chance of winning the election two and a half weeks from now. Even if you don’t go in for all that fancy-pants modeling stuff and just want to look at the polls state by state, the fact that the states where we’re unsure about the results include Arizona, Georgia, and Texas … rather than Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Virginia … should tell you that the race is nailed down. (If you want to just look at crowd sizes and social media, I’m not sure there’s anything I can tell you that will help you at this point.)
Future President Clinton, however, would probably like to pass some progressive legislation once she’s in office, which would require control of both chambers of Congress. Failing that, she’d still like to fill the vacant Supreme Court seat right away, which will go a long way toward limiting gerrymandering, reviving the Voting Rights Act, getting big-donor money out of politics, and other actions that’ll help put us on track toward retaking the House in the 2020s. To do that, though (and to make other executive and judicial appointments without interference), at a bare minimum, we’d still need Democratic control of the Senate.
The Democrats do have better-than-even odds of controlling the Senate, but it’s more perilous than our odds in the presidential race; we calculate that the Democrats have a 59 percent chance of holding 50 or more seats in the Senate, which gives them control so long as Tim Kaine can act as the tiebreaker. Basically, what it boils down to is that there are three races right at the tipping point, and are all tossups: Nevada, New Hampshire, and Pennsylvania. We need Democratic candidates to win two out of those three races. If you’re looking for a last-minute place to send your financial contributions, to do some long-distance phone banking, or, if you’re in or near those states, to do some in-person GOTV, these would be the optimum places to do it.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 18:12:18 +0000
For months Donald Trump has been going on, and on, and, my god, on about voter fraud, as if it were a plague upon the American political system. It’s happening … right … now ... even though elections aren’t held on Thursdays.
Three days ago he said:
“They even want to try to rig the election at the polling booths and believe me there’s a lot going on,” he told supporters at a rally in Green Bay, Wisconsin. “Do you ever hear these people? They say ‘there’s nothing going on.’ People that have died 10 years ago are still voting, illegal immigrants are voting -- I mean, where are the street smarts of some of these politicians?”
And in August he said:
"And I'm telling you, November 8, we'd better be careful, because that election is going to be rigged," the New York billionaire told Fox News host Sean Hannity in one such example. "And I hope the Republicans are watching closely or it's going to be taken away from us."
And in March he said:
The whole thing with voter ID identification I think is really – I mean people are going to walk in, they are going to vote 10 times maybe. Who knows? They are going to vote 10 times. I am very concerned and I hope the Republicans are going to be very watchful and I hope the authorities are going to be very watchful.
But over the course of 14 years—2000 through 2014—there have been exactly … what for it ... 31 incidences of voter fraud.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 17:41:24 +0000
At Wednesday night’s debate, Donald Trump refused to say that he would respect the outcome of the presidential election. It was astounding to everyone, but there’s good news this morning. Donald Trump says he will now accept exactly half the possible outcomes.
We are going to do something that has never been done before in this country. Believe me. Ladies and gentlemen, I want to make a major announcement today. I would like to promise and pledge to all of my voters and supporters and to all of the people of the United States that I will totally accept the results of this great and historic presidential election if I win.
Yes, that is historic all right. Checking with the Federal Election Commission, Census Bureau, and National Weather Service, we can now confirm that Donald Trump has broken the record for divisive jackassery. It’s a record unlikely to be matched by another candidate (though Trump may break his own record at any moment).
As for the very, very good chance that Hillary Clinton will win on November 8, Donald Trump has a solution—Hillary should resign from the race.
Conservatives want to stop people from voting on Election Day. Fight back against voter suppression by clicking here and signing up as a volunteer for Protect the Vote. Help make sure all Americans have the chance to cast their ballot.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 19:06:44 +0000With all three 2016 presidential debates finished (phew), it’s time to step back a little and take stock. We know Hillary Clinton won all three. We know Donald Trump screwed up a lot. But the relationship between those two things needs to be given a little more attention. Clinton didn’t just win because Trump screwed up. Trump didn’t just screw up in a vacuum. As Ezra Klein argues: Trump’s meltdown wasn’t an accident. The Clinton campaign coolly analyzed his weaknesses and then sprung trap after trap to take advantage of them. The campaign may have done the analyzing and designed the traps, but Hillary Clinton had to personally spring them. She had to deliver lines intended to get under Trump’s skin without letting them look like attacks, so that his meltdown would be what stood out. And she had to do that while keeping her cool onstage with an abusive bully. And while being prepared to answer any question that might get thrown at her. That’s a tall order. But it’s not all Clinton had to do. She faced a set of additional pressures as a woman. We know how it goes. Smile, but not too much. Be warm, but don’t seem weak. Be passionate, but for heaven’s sake don’t raise your voice even a little. And Clinton somehow hit the magic balance throughout most of all three debates. She smiled, she laughed, she was serious and empathetic when the subject called for it, she did not back down, she was genuine and personable without sacrificing her formidable knowledge. She couldn’t entirely avoid some people arguing she smiled too much or interrupted too much (even as she interrupted Trump nine times and he interrupted her 37 times). But those criticisms were remarkably muted in commentary on these debates compared with the primary debates or her speeches. This shouldn’t be a pressure Clinton faces as a woman, but it is, and she navigated it beautifully. Daily Kos is teaming up with Color of Change to mobilize black voters in crucial swing states, with groundbreaking texting technology. Click here to get involved from the comfort of your home. [...]
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 19:01:24 +0000Today’s comic by Ruben Bolling is Trump's angrier things: Nineteen days remain until the election. Click here to make sure you're registered to vote. In the majority of states, if you haven’t yet registered, you’ve missed the deadline. Below is a list of deadlines in the 22 states where there is still time to register, including the 13 where you can register on Election Day or don’t need to register. Alabama: Oct. 24 on line, by mail, and in person; California: Oct. 24 on line, by mail, and in person; Colorado: Nov. 8 in person, Oct. 31 on line and by mail; Connecticut: Nov. 8 in person, Nov. 1 on line and by mail; Idaho: Nov. 8 in person; Illinois: Nov. 8 in person, Oct. 23 on line; Iowa: Nov. 8 in person, Oct. 24 by mail, Oct. 29 on line; Maine: Nov. 8 in person; Maryland: Nov. 3 in person; Minnesota: Nov. 8 in person; Montana: Nov. 8 in person; Nebraska: Oct. 21 on line and by mail, Oct. 28 in person; New Hampshire: Nov. 8 in person, Oct. 29 by mail; North Carolina: Nov. 5 in person; North Dakota: No registration required; South Dakota: Oct. 24 by mail and in person; Utah: Nov. 1 on line and in person; Vermont: Nov. 2 on line, by mail, and in person; Washington: Oct. 31 in person; Washington, DC: Nov. 8 in person; Wisconsin: Nov. 8 in person, Oct. 19 by mail; Wyoming: Nov. 8 in person: Oct. 25 by mail. • How hackers broke into Colin Powell’s and John Podesta’s email accounts: The data linking a group of Russian hackers—known as Fancy Bear, APT28, or Sofacy—to the hack on Podesta is also yet another piece in a growing heap of evidencepointing toward the Kremlin. And it also shows a clear thread between apparently separate and independent leaks that have appeared on a website called DC Leaks, such as that of Colin Powell’s emails; and the Podesta leak, which was publicized on WikiLeaks. All these hacks were done using the same tool: malicious short URLs hidden in fake Gmail messages. • The physics of jumping off an eight-story building and not dying. Need we say not to try this at home? • Climate change got 2 seconds in the third debate: Brad Plumer at Vox weighs in on the missing debate questions: ...no one asked about global warming at all. Not in the first presidential debate. Not in the vice presidential debate. Not in the second presidential debate.* Not in the third presidential debate. Hillary Clinton name-checked the topic, occasionally, but that was it. Humanity is departing from the stable climatic conditions that allowed civilization to thrive, yet the most powerful nation on Earth can’t set aside five minutes to discuss. And David Leonhardt at The New York Times writes: The failure to ask about climate change is a failure of journalism. I thought that the debate moderators had some very fine moments over the last few weeks, calmly drawing out the candidates. But the lack of a single question on the world’s biggest problem was a grievous error. • A giant chunk of jade unearthed in Burma is worth $175 million. The 200-ton rock will be shipped to China where it will be made into jewelry. • Extremist militias organizing in fear of Clinton win: This extremist surge received national media attention during the occupation of the Malheur [...]
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 18:17:14 +0000
During Wednesday’s debate, Donald Trump talked a lot, but not so much about the questions he was asked. On the few occasions when he was forced to say something not part of his standard talking points, he blabbered in a way that struck a lot of people like a sixth grader forced to stand before the class and give a capsule review of a book that didn’t come out of the backpack all summer.
For example, here’s Trump discussing the D.C. v. Heller case—and keep in mind that Trump has already been given the name of the case, knows that Hillary didn’t like the outcome, that the subject was the Second Amendment, and that Scalia’s was involved.
Well the D.C. versus Heller decision was very strongly, and she was extremely angry about it, I watched, and she was very, very angry when upheld, and Justice Scalia was so involved, and it was a well-crafted decision, but Hillary was extremely upset, extremely angry, and people that believe in the Second Amendment, and believe in it very strongly, were very upset with what she had to say.
Uh-huh. Answers like that inspired tweets like this from St. Louis Alderman and mayoral candidate Antonio French.
Which in turn produced an continuing flurry of #TrumpBookReport tweets that are sure to replace Cliff Notes as the go-to summary for those needing a bit of instant literary cred.
Conservatives want to stop people from voting on Election Day. Fight back against voter suppression by clicking here and signing up as a volunteer for Protect the Vote. Help make sure all Americans have the chance to cast their ballot.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 17:14:18 +0000Donald Trump predictably spent Wednesday night’s debate lying on the subject of the nine women who say he’s sexually assaulted them. First, he claimed that “those stories have been largely debunked.” Then he denied having said things about the women that he most definitely said. Maybe Trump thinks “debunked” and “I denied it” are synonyms, but they’re not, and the women’s stories have not been debunked according to the traditional definition of the word. Sorry, but producing a guy who claims to have been on a plane with Trump and one of his accusers 35 years ago and to clearly remember that the woman was flirting with Trump and he wasn’t touching her? That is not debunking either. Even if the alleged witness didn’t have a history of making wild claims. But, okay. Nine women might have very believable claims about Donald Trump that line up with what Trump was recorded saying about his own behavior in 2005. They might have told friends what happened at the time of the assaults. But none of those assaults are on tape. What is on tape, though, is what Trump said about the women after they came forward. And Trump lied about that: Clinton: At the last debate, we heard Donald talking about what he did to women, and after that a number of women have come forward saying that's exactly what he did to them. Now, what was his response? Well, he held a number of big rallies where he said that he could not possibly have done those things to those women because they were not attractive enough for – Trump: I did not say that. Clinton: -- them to be assaulted. Trump: I did not say that. Clinton: In fact, he went on to say -- Wallace: Her two minutes. Sir, her two minutes. Trump: I did not say that. Oh yes, he did. And Clinton just happened to be ready with the quotes: He went on to say “look at her, I don’t think so.” About another woman, he said “that wouldn't be my first choice.” He said that. He absolutely said that. And when he lies about the accusations having been debunked, and he lies about this part of his treatment on women, something we can see for ourselves he’s lying about, why would he expect us to believe that he didn’t assault them to begin with? Does Donald Trump scare you so much that you want to vote early? Request an absentee ballot by clicking here. [...]
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 17:26:22 +0000
Now that Donald Trump has made his intentions regarding accepting election results clear, the fact that Paul Ryan isn't holding a press conference right now to denounce him just shows the GOP is beyond bankrupt. Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi agrees.
“Last night, Donald Trump once again threatened the foundation of American democracy itself, and Speaker Ryan and Senator McConnell can’t find the courage to stand by the sanctity of our electoral system.
“Never before in our history has a major party candidate refused to accept the results of an election. The deafening silence of Speaker Ryan and Senator McConnell only worsens the lasting damage that will be caused by this unprecedented assault on our values as a nation.
“Silence is complicity. Evasion is unacceptable. Speaker Ryan and Senator McConnell must make it unequivocally clear that they reject Trump’s horrifying attack on our elections.”
Crickets so far from "leadership."
Beyond winning the White House, we must also elect more progressive Democrats in Congress. With the PCCC and Daily Kos, you can now make phone calls to voters in the key districts that will get us more and better Democrats. Click here to start.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 16:52:31 +0000
It’s hard to believe, but Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s decades-long reign of terror might finally come to an end next month. According to a new poll from the Behavior Research Institute, conducted on behalf of several local Arizona media outlets, Arpaio trails his Democratic challenger, former Phoenix police sergeant Paul Penzone, by an astounding 15 points!
Paul Penzone (D): 46
Joe Arpaio (R): 31
And it’s not just this one poll. A week ago, a survey from a Republican pollster found Penzone beating Arpaio 51-41. And not only could Arpaio lose re-election, he might also soon lose his freedom: On Monday, federal prosecutors charged Arpaio with criminal contempt of court for violating an agreement to curtail racial profiling by his department. If he’s found guilty, he could face six months in prison.
But Arpaio will go down swinging, and even after spending millions on his own campaign, he still has a huge cash advantage over Penzone, $1.2 million to just $290,000. It would be truly atrocious if America’s worst lawman could somehow snatch victory from the jaws of defeat by using his bank account to flood the airwaves. That’s why it’s on us to make sure Penzone has enough money to fight back.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 16:20:06 +0000A funny thing has happened on the way to the election—the lies Republicans have been getting away with for years are finally being exposed. Donald Trump's extreme, outrageous, and conspiracy-tainted lies are all just longstanding Republican lies, but exaggerated to such a ridiculous degree, he's helping discredit them. Voter fraud? How many times in the past two weeks have you seen traditional media report the statistic that there have been just 31 cases of proven in-person voter fraud in 14 years, out of 1 billion votes? Plenty of times, right? But what have we been hearing from Republicans for years? The threat of voter fraud is so great that they have to pass more and more restrictive voting laws to prevent it. That voter fraud exists has been taken as an article of faith by the traditional media and, as a result, the public believes that voter ID laws are necessary. But Trump's blown the lid off that, forcing even one of the stalwarts of voter suppression—Ohio's Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted—to debunk voter fraud myths and to rebuke Trump. "I can assure him, as a fellow Republican, that it is not rigged," said Husted, who intends to vote for Trump. "I hope Donald Trump will focus on issues people really care about and not on issues that are not based on fact and undermine confidence in our democracy." Physician, heal thyself. Even Fox News—FOX!!!!—has debunked voter fraud, with reporter Peter Doocy quoting experts and a chyron reading "experts say voter fraud is rare." FOX!!!! It's not just voter fraud, though. How many times in the past three years have you seen headlines about "skyrocketing" Obamacare premiums? Trump's crazy claim in last night's debate that they "are going to go up over 100 percent" gives us this from the AP; an actual fact check on premium hikes. "A study this summer by the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation looked at 14 metro areas with complete information and found premiums were rising in 12 of them. The average increase for a popular option called the 'lowest-cost silver plan' was 11 percent." Reporting! Facts! And the next time a Republican says premiums are skyrocketing, let's remember this. This might be the best gift from Trump, though. xThanks @realDonaldTrump for ensuring @HillaryClinton's call for the wealthiest to pay their fair share into #SocialSecurity is all over TV! https://t.co/7exhnlNKkF— SocialSecurityWorks (@SSWorks) October 20, 2016 Well that and the civil war that's going to destroy the GOP. That's pretty good, too. Can you chip in $3 to help Hillary Clinton finish off the GOP? Conservatives want to stop people from voting on Election Day. Fight back against voter suppression by clicking here and signing up as a volunteer for Protect the Vote. Help make sure all Americans have the chance to cast their ballot. [...]
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 16:53:54 +0000
Donald Trump, just now in a rally in Delaware, Ohio vowed that he'll accept the results of this "great and historic" election. On one condition.
We are going to do something that has never been done before in this country. Believe me. Ladies and gentlemen, I want to make a major announcement today. I would like to promise and pledge to all of my voters and supporters and to all of the people of the United States that I will totally accept the results of this great and historic presidential election if I win. [Watch below the fold.]
Speaker Paul Ryan, Leader Mitch McConnell? What say you?
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 16:02:33 +0000Chris Wallace is getting some good reviews for his performance as a debate moderator, but let’s take a closer look, shall we? In part, Wallace is getting credit for Donald Trump having been slightly more prepared than he had been in the previous two debates. Early on, Trump was at least making an effort to talk policy (in that detail-free, lie-filled Donald Trump way) and avoid interrupting. It deteriorated as the evening went on and was always kind of a sham, but let’s not give Wallace too much credit for improvement on that front. And let’s take a look at his questions, shall we? Wallace was the moderator from Fox News, not just in title but in spirit. But if you need to know more than that, well: The Supreme Court is a question of guns and abortion and that’s it, in Wallace-world. He made free use of the propaganda term “partial birth abortion.” On the economy, Wallace claimed that Clinton’s plan “is similar to the Obama stimulus plan in 2009, which has led to the slowest GDP growth since 1949” and “is your plan basically more, even more of the Obama stimulus?” Dude. The stimulus came during a massive financial crisis and economic collapse. The problem was that the stimulus was too small to address the magnitude of the crisis … so if Clinton’s plan is “basically more,” then that’s a good thing. The stimulus did not lead to slow GDP growth—that was a result of the problems the stimulus was intended to address in the first place—it just didn’t lead away from a crashing economy quickly enough. Because, again, it wasn’t big enough. Wallace might get credit for getting Trump on the record that he won’t necessarily respect the outcome of the election—but having done that, Wallace proceeded with his questions as if it was business as usual. Those questions included an attempt to coach Trump into a semi-accurate answer on Syria: Wallace: Let's turn to Aleppo. Mr. Trump, in the last debate you were both asked about the situation in the Syrian city of Aleppo, and I want to follow up on that because you said several things in that debate which were not true, sir. You said that Aleppo has basically fallen. In fact, there are — [...] Wallace: Well there are quarter of a million people still living there and being slaughtered. [...] Wallace: If I may just finish here. And you also said that Syria and Russia are busy fighting ISIS. In fact, they have been the ones who have been bombing and shelling eastern Aleppo, and they just announced a humanitarian pause, in effect admitting they have been bombing and shelling in Aleppo. Would you like to clear that up, sir? Mr. Trump, here are the specific things you got wrong. Care to take a second stab at it? That, though, was eclipsed by the moment in which Trump denied having advocated more countries, including Japan, getting nuclear weapons. Wallace’s response: Wallace: Okay. Here’s the thing. Trump didn't just say Japan should get nukes. He said it to Chris Wallace. And Wallace let his denial slide with a simple “okay.” But the final segment of the debate was the F[...]
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 15:46:18 +0000
I’ve long tracked the split of the GOP into its three warring factions—establishment, religious right, and Tea Party. It is the split that gifted us Donald Trump, and it’s the split that will continue giving headaches to Republicans for years to come, as a new Bloomberg poll confirms.
For starters, Paul Ryan has ended up on the short end of his feud with Trump:
Republicans are in no mood to indulge anything resembling sanity, even if it comes in Ryan’s fake respectability. The Trumpian approach to Republicanism has majority support inside the GOP. And there are no signs of that abating.
Going back to our three buckets, Mike Pence (a quarter) represents the religious right, Donald Trump represents the Tea Party deplorables (a quarter), and Paul Ryan-John Kasich represents the establishment (a quarter). Ted Cruz is an odd duck, ingratiating himself with both the Tea Party and theocratic wings of his party (which is why he’ll be the GOP nominee in 2020 if Trump doesn’t run again).
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 15:42:18 +0000
Donald Trump spent a lot of time in Wednesday night’s debate blaming the media for his failures, but now he’s adding a another name to his list of enemies. Here’s Fox News’s Chris Wallace as he introduced the final debate.
Wallace: For the record, I decided the topics and the questions in each topic. None of the questions have been shared with the commission or candidates.
Sounds clear enough. However, here’s what Donald Trump is tweeting this morning.
Trump’s rampant paranoia has led him to believe that even Fox is in the can for Hillary. Which is probably easier for Trump to take than the idea that Hillary is simply that much smarter, better, and more competent than he is.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 01:03:51 +0000
Virginia’s governor is asking a federal court to extend the state’s voter registration deadline after a computer crash on Sunday and Monday prevented as many as tens of thousands from registering.
(Gov. Terry) McAuliffe made the request one day after a civil rights group filed a lawsuit to extend the deadline, arguing that the state’s technological failures should not deprive citizens of their right to vote.
“Let’s let them get in to vote,” McAuliffe (D) said. “I think it’s a great thing for democracy.”
Since the last presidential debate Virginia switched from a paper-registration format to an online-registration format. Until this year the most voters to register in a day was 2,200. That changed dramatically this year.
That single-day online registration record has been broken three times this year in response to social-media campaigns urging Virginians to register: 8,000 signed up one day in February, ahead of the deadline to register for the primary; 17,000 on Sept. 23, ahead of National Voter Registration Day; 21,000 managed to do so on Monday, despite the day’s technical issues.
This would be a good time for Virginia, and the other 49 states, to work out the kinks in any voting procedures so come Nov. 8 the country doesn’t have a flashback to the 2000 presidential election.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 15:18:54 +0000
When your candidate has just made a basic assault on democracy, it’s understandable that some desperate ploys might get made in searching for an excuse.
But Trump’s surrogates say the Republican presidential nominee isn’t doing anything that hasn’t been done before — by 2000 Democratic presidential nominee Al Gore.
This is a great excuse—in Opposite Land. But Trump wasn’t asked what he would do if the results of the election were so close that there was no way to determine the outcome on the evening of the election.
Here’s what Trump was asked.
Mr. Trump… You have been warning at rallies recently that this election is rigged and that Hillary Clinton is in the process of trying to steal it from you. Your running mate Governor Pence pledged on Sunday that he and you, his words, will absolutely accept the result of this election. Today your daughter Ivanka said the same thing. I want to ask you here on the stage tonight, do you make the same commitment that you will absolutely, sir, that you will absolutely accept the result of the selection?
And here’s what Donald Trump said in reply.
I will look at it at the time. I'm not looking at anything now I will look at it at the time.
That’s nothing like what happened with Al Gore, not the night of the election. Not ever.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 01:34:00 +0000
During the final presidential debate, Hillary Clinton did not shy away from her views that women should be in charge of their own health care decisions. Read the excerpt, then watch the video below:
CLINTON: Because Roe v. Wade very clearly sets out that there can be regulations on abortion so long as the life and the health of the mother are taken into account. And when I voted as a senator, I did not think that that was the case. The kinds of cases that fall at the end of pregnancy are often the most heart breaking, painful decisions for families to make. I have met with women who have toward the end of their pregnancy get the worse news one could get—that their health is in jeopardy if they continue to carry to term or that something terrible has happened or just been discovered about the pregnancy. I do not think the United States government should be stepping in and making those most personal of decisions. So, you can regulate, if you are doing so with the life and the health of the mother taken into account.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, your reaction, and particularly on this issue of late term partial birth abortion.
TRUMP: I think it's terrible if you go with what Hillary is saying in the ninth month, you can take the baby and rip the baby out of the womb of the mother just prior to the birth of the baby. Now, you can say that that's okay and Hillary can say that that's okay, but it's not okay with me. Because based on what she is saying and based on where she is going and where she has been, you can take the baby and rip the baby out of the womb in the ninth month on the final day. And that's not acceptable.
CLINTON: Well, that is not what happens in these cases. And using that kind of scare rhetoric is just terribly unfortunate. You should meet with some of the women that I have met with. Women I have known over the course of my life. This is one of the worst possible choices that any woman and her family has to make. And I do not believe the government should be making it. You know, I have had the great honor of traveling across the world on behalf of our country. I have been to countries where governments either forced women to have abortions like they used to do in China, or forced women to bear children like they used to do in Romania. I can tell you the government has no business in the decisions that women make with their families."
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 14:05:40 +0000
The entire world is buzzing about one thing after last night's debate: Donald Trump's refusal to say he'd accept the results of the election. It's the lead story on all the morning news shows. It's been condemned by pundits and politicians alike—Democrats and Republicans. But from Republican leadership, well, we're still getting radio silence.
The top elected Republican in the land, House Speaker Paul Ryan, seems to be skipping ahead to 2020. The only thing out of him this morning is a campaign video about his "better way forward." One seemingly without Trump.
Oh, and a tweet about how awful Obamacare is.
How about Mitch McConnell, the Senate's Republican leader?
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 14:06:25 +0000
Throughout the presidential campaign, from the primaries to the general election, Donald Trump has been a special kind of liar. So why would things change during the third and final debate of the campaign? Trump continued to lie an astonishing amount, according to fact-checks. He repeated his many-times-debunked claims to have opposed the invasion of Iraq and to have been endorsed by a government agency. He claimed that the stories of women who say he’s sexually assaulted them have been largely debunked, which they haven’t, and that he hasn’t said they weren’t attractive enough for him to sexually assault anyway, which he has definitely said. He made a series of outlandishly false statements on the Middle East. But as much as the content of his lies is important and eyebrow-raising, their frequency is maybe more noteworthy.
So let’s look at a couple key numbers:
Every politician will get something wrong sometimes, or give an overly self-flattering account, or fail to parse their words in a way that makes fact-checkers happy. But Trump goes way, way beyond that. Every. Single. Time. He cannot make a public statement without lies, big and small, it seems. There’s something wrong with the man, and it would be something very wrong in a president.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 13:51:40 +0000
JOIN Tom the Dancing Bug's subscription club, the Proud & Mighty INNER HIVE, for exclusive early access to comics, extra comics, and oh, so much more.
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 12:01:22 +0000Leading Off: ● NH-Sen, PA-Sen: With Donald Trump's numbers in the gutter nationwide, the well-funded pro-Hillary Clinton super PAC Priorities USA can devote some of its resources to ensuring that Clinton gets to work with a Democratic Senate. Last week, several media organizations reported that Priorities was readying ads in key Senate contests, and on Tuesday, they confirmed it. Priorities says that they'll launch commercials in New Hampshire and Pennsylvania tying Sens. Kelly Ayotte and Pat Toomey to Trump. The group did not say how much they'll spend in each state, or if they plan to get involved in any other Senate races. Polls show that while both Ayotte and Toomey are in tight races, they're still doing much better than Trump in their states. However, a recent DSCC poll argued that, when voters are informed that their GOP Senate candidate used to back Trump but only recently withdrew their support, Team Red lost critical support. Ayotte infamously spent most of the campaign saying she was voting for Trump, and only dumped him after his "grab them by the pussy!" video surfaced; Toomey continues to be evasive about who he plans to vote for in the presidential race. Both Republicans are absolutely aware that if too many voters associate them with The Donald, they're in trouble. Toomey recently launched a strange ad where he halfheartedly noted that he has "a lot of disagreements with Donald Trump," though he didn't provide any actual examples. Ayotte and Toomey's Democratic foes, Maggie Hassan and Katie McGinty, have been airing their own ads tethering the two senators to Trump. Priorities has run some of the most effective commercials of the cycle that used Trump's own words against him. If they can use Trump's many awful comments to drag down Ayotte and Toomey, Democrats will have a lot to smile about on election night. [...]
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 12:59:47 +0000
Two thirds of the way through last night’s debate, Trump gave … that answer. The one that’s headline grabbing because, eh, when a man in the middle of an election says he’s not going to listen to the outcome of that election, that’s genuine news. But while we’re waiting for Rudy to swear in Trump on the golden throne of Trump Tower, it’s worth considering the other things Trump said Wednesday night.
Come with me now as we watch Donald Trump:
Plus Douglas MacArthur makes a guest appearance.
All in—this can of the incredible Mr. Trump’s debate answers!
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 12:31:26 +0000Everybody survived the debate, I assume. The Republic might not have made it, but we can’t say for sure. I will just have to keep you in suspense on that score. Quite frankly, I am not so sure that I’m willing to accept that it’s still only Thursday. I will look at it at the time. Listen LIVE right here at 9:00 AM ET! Oh, right! It’s probably time to craft a new shtick for this middle part, here. This is the bit where I remind you that we need your help in order to make a living at this. If the show is something you enjoy, or just want people to think it is, why not pitch in and keep alive our hopes of one day fully justifying to our families the time we spend on it?* You can make a one-time donation, or subscribe via PayPal or Patreon to provide ongoing, monthly support! Not sold yet? How about a FREE SAMPLE of our show, in convenient YouTube format? Like what you see? Why? It’s just a logo! How about what you hear? Well, then, consider subscribing to our YouTube channel! Our goal is to have so many of you listen to the show each day via YouTube, that we’ll then punish you by running ads at the beginning, in exchange for even more money, but from other people’s wallets! x YouTube Video YouTube | iTunes | LibSyn | Support the show: Patreon; PayPal; PayPal Subscription Let’s all join David Waldman in singing danke schoën that the last 2016 presidential debate will soon be in the past. Donald Trump weirdly snubs Barack Obama’s brothers Mark, Bernard, George and David while adding Malik to the debate guest list. Greg Dworkin says all bets are off for this presidential race. Really—they’re already paying out. If you can get in, the over/under is 400 electoral votes. Some think something’s rigged. Trump followers think everything is rigged. Democrats move to rig the election with votes. Trump surrogates desperately bet on Trump, while continuing to lose. Even then, there are still a couple left that think he’ll win. Those people are wrong, crazy, or both. Republicans certainly look at things differently. Meanwhile, Donald Trump goes on a presidential death march we’ve never seen before. After the debate it will be about 19 more days until the first woman president is elected, and the roaches will scurry away. Joan McCarter visits with election news of her own. Time is running out for President Obama’s nominations requiring senate confirmation. A new Democratic Senate could fix that. If a Republican Senate stays, they will be united against Clinton also. Marco Rubio says please come to the polls, they aren’t so rigged, as opponent Democrat Rep. Patrick Murphy picks up endorsements from the four big newspapers in Florida. David plays headline lightning round: Donald Trump asks for witnesses to his groping, 6 people say OK. CBS orders Ca[...]
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 12:19:48 +0000
From the GREAT STATE OF MAINE…
In the interest of giving you a brief moment of respite from the utter nuttiness enveloping the planet, this space contains no Trump tweets, Trump surrogates, Trump meltdowns, Trump conspiracies, Trump rallies, frackers, voter suppression, climate destruction, zika, killer clowns, czars, Koch brothers, mind-numbing political ads, creepy dictators, smartphones bursting into flames, gridlock, whiners, income inequality, mass shootings, Fox News gibberish, racism, the word "rigged", Jill Stein songs, deficit scolds, neocons, domestic violence, ocean acidification, Merrick Garland obstruction, drones, fearmongering, stupid "bathroom bills", unemployment worries, James O’Keefe sightings, inbox-clogging money begs, Pepe the frog tweets, mansplaining, hate crimes, car trouble, “both sides do it” bullshit, foreclosures, What’s Aleppos, wars on women, police brutality, melting ice caps, emails, hurricanes, tar sands, truthers, birthers, alt-righters, Millennial bashing, skyrocketing tuition bills, Giuliani rants, droughts, floods or methane pockets. Stay as long as you like:
We hope you enjoyed this pause in the action. Please have a great rest of your day. Just don’t roll a ten or you’ll have to go directly to jail.
Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 11:23:08 +0000
Remember, the best post-debate stories will come tomorrow and have not been written yet. The most important moment of the debate was captured by the WSJ and AP (see headline above) and simply put, is a disqualifier. Mike Pence, when asked, agreed with Trump. Meanwhile…
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 03:03:53 +0000Before the debate began, the narrative was simple enough: Donald Trump’s biggest problem was his need to demonstrate steady leadership, while Hillary Clinton’s lead allowed her to play defense and take a cautious approach. That didn’t happen. Donald Trump didn’t present a reasonable face, because it’s not in his ability. Hillary Clinton didn’t take a timid approach, because it’s not in her nature. Instead, Hillary Clinton delivered the most forceful presentation of progressive ideas that America has seen in decades. She unabashedly spoke out for women’s right, did not shy away from defending Planned Parenthood, didn’t back away when pressed by either Trump or Wallace — and the two were often aligned — even when questions were framed in the most leading (and inaccurate) ways. Hillary Clinton left no doubt at all who was the toughest person on the stage. She was clear, confident, and absolutely a force of nature. And Donald Trump … was Donald Trump. As in the second debate, Trump started the debate biting his tongue and making an obvious effort to seem reasonable. But he couldn’t do it. Not for twenty minutes. Not even for the space of the first question, which ended with Trump’s graphic claim that aborted babies were “ripped” from the womb a day before they were due. And that was Trump’s high point. In the end, Hillary won on every issue. Every. Issue. She didn’t back down. Didn’t dodge. And seized the territory in every instance. This was particularly clear in the case of Wikileaks were, more than just coming up empty trying to convict Hillary via emails, Trump was left mounting a defense of Vladimir Putin, to the point where when Chris Wallace offered him an out, he couldn’t find it, and when Hillary called him a “puppet” of Putin, it hit like a ton of bricks. Trump fumbled on Mosul and ISIS, was caught out on the weakness of his economic plan, and was revealed as beyond shallow on every other point. When pressed over using Chinese steel in his hotel, and over not paying taxes, Trump’s answer was absolutely astounding—“you should have made me.” It was an amazing admission of selfishness on a grand scale. Far from playing rope-a-dope, Hillary went directly into Trump and landed blow after blow, while barely receiving a tap in return. In fact, there were a dozen moments in the debate where Trump delivered lines—“I didn’t even apologize to my wife”—that would themselves be memorable as massive, campaign-ending gaffes in most years. But none of that matters. None of it. Because there was an utterly disqualifying moment in this debate. No matter where you live, sign up with MoveOn to call voters in swing states from the comfort of your h[...]