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Published: Sat, 20 Jan 2018 11:31:56 +0000

Last Build Date: Sat, 20 Jan 2018 11:31:56 +0000

Copyright: Copyright 2005 - Steal what you want
 



'We Are in a Reverse Democracy Right Now'': 'BradCast' 1/19/2018

Sat, 20 Jan 2018 02:52:13 +0000

Guest: Barbara Arnwine of the new Nat'l Commission for Voter Justice... On today's BradCast, we're still fighting for the right to vote and to have that vote counted, 60 years after MLK's "Give Us the Ballot" speech, 50 years after the passage of the hard-won Voting Rights Act, 4 years after the U.S. Supreme Court gutted it, and one day after what my guest today describes as a "really wicked decision" by the Court on Thursday to set aside a landmark ruling on gerrymandering that was meant to finally correct a grave injustice to voters in 2018. [Audio link to full show follows below.] With Republicans in the U.S. House, on Thursday, having passed a short-term stopgap spending bill to keep the U.S. Government from shutting down beginning on Friday night at midnight, Republicans in the U.S. Senate are still racing to figure out how to overcome a filibuster of the same bill. The measure includes support for kids that rely on the currently-expired Children's Healthcare Insurance Program (CHIP), but leaves some 800,000 kids of immigrants who came here with their parents still facing deportation as early as March, after Trump ended Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.  So, once again, rather than simply including a fix to DACA, Republicans are using children as human shields to try and force Democrats to vote with them for a short-term bill to avoid a shutdown of the federal government. It would be the first such shutdown in U.S. history while the House, Senate and White House are all controlled by the same party. Sick of this sort of BS? If so, you can theoretically do something about it this year at the ballot box. But the GOP's stolen U.S. Supreme Court isn't making it easy. On Thursday, SCOTUS stayed a landmark ruling by an appeals court panel that had ordered North Carolina to immediately redraw the state's U.S. House district maps, since the Republican majority legislature admitted that they, unconstitutionally, drew them to ensure a Republican advantage. Though it's largely a 50/50 state, NC Republicans hold 10 seats in the U.S. House to the Democrats' 3. That's just one of the ways that Republicans hope to keep cheating voters this year in order to hang on to power as the mid-terms approach.  Another way was through Trump's discredited and now disbanded "Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity", run by the GOP "voter fraud" fraudster and Kansas Sec. of State Kris Kobach. He had hoped to use the Commission to make it harder (for certain people) to vote, but he faced yet another embarrassment in court this week. When Kobach's Commission was originally shut down a week or two ago, there was a cry from voting rights advocates for a national committee to study and call out the real scourge of American democracy: voter suppression. That call may have been answered this week with the formation of the non-partisan National Commission for Voter Justice, co-chaired by my guest today, BARBARA ARNWINE, former longtime Executive Director of the Lawyer's Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and now President and Founder of the Transformative Justice Coalition.  Arnwine explains the new Commission's mission, responds to the "wicked" SCOTUS ruling on NC maps and other recent voting rights issues, and details many of the threats to democracy that must be overcome in 2018, more than sixty years after, as she and John Nichols note at The Nation this week, Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his landmark "Give Us the Ballot" address on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1957. "We gotta remember, we are looking at the Roberts Court. This is a man who made his life ambition the evisceration and the weakening of the Voting Rights Act. In fact, if he had had his way, there wouldn't be a Voting Rights Act, as he wrote many, many years ago," Arnwine says in response to the SCOTUS stay on the NC redistricting ruling and a similar one in Texas.  "They are fine with these kinds of schemes -- gerrymandering and other devices and tactics that deny people the right to vote -- because they believe in t[...]



NM-Gov: Michelle Lujan Girsham (D) Turns Up The Pressure On Congress To Protect DREAMers

Sat, 20 Jan 2018 01:32:15 +0000

Received this e-mail today from Rep. Michelle Lujan Girsham’s (D. NM) gubernatorial campaign:

The cutoff for Congress to find a sensible, humane solution for DREAMers is today. I am tired of the Republicans saying we have until March to find a solution. Each day Congress delays acting, countless DREAMers are in fear of losing their DACA protection.

We don’t have much time before Republicans shut down the government, but let me take a minute to remind you who we’re actually fighting for. First of all, and most important, we’re talking about real people. Real people who are doctors, educators and members of our armed forces. Not numbers. Not faceless ranks of political chess pieces. Real people who have built real lives here against all odds – like Isaac, who I met last summer. Isaac's parents brought him to New Mexico for a better life and worked as janitors to provide for him. And Yuridia, who I met in 2013 and has since been able to attend college and get a job. When she was sexually assaulted at school, her DACA status is what gave Yuridia the courage to report the assault without fear of being deported.

This is why I'm fighting, why I'm rallying, and, yes, why I'm crashing meetings at the White House that I and my colleagues in the Congressional Hispanic Caucus were senselessly shut out of. Because people like Yuridia and Isaac are counting on us to protect the lives they have fought for, tooth and nail. They deserve dignity.

So here's what Isaac, Yuridia, the nearly 700,000 other DREAMers and I need from you. We need you to tell Republicans that it is their moral imperative to take action now, not to shut down the government, but to protect DREAMers and their families. Click here to add your name. Tell Congress: Act now, do not shut down the government, it is time to protect DREAMers. Are you with me?

Thank you,

Michelle

Click here to add your name.




NV-Sen: Jacky Rosen's (D) Uses Dean Heller's (R) Own Words In New Ad Hitting Him On The Shutdown

Sat, 20 Jan 2018 01:20:03 +0000

Received this e-mail today from Rep. Jacky Rosen’s (D. NV) U.S. Senate campaign:

(image)

Hi  – we can’t believe we’re saying this, but Dean Heller is right. In an interview with NBC News last year, he said: "There will be no excuses and nobody else’s fault but the Republican Party if this government does shut down."

We’re launching a digital ad to spread the word and hold him accountable. Watch it here »

Dean Heller and Mitch McConnell are to blame for their failure to fund children's health insurance and their refusal to protect Dreamers. Republicans are blocking bipartisan bills to fund both that would pass today. We can keep the government open without this forced false choice. It’s ridiculous.
 

So if the government does shut down tonight, in the words of Dean Heller, this is the fault of the Republican Party. Click here to watch our digital ad, and then chip in $5 or more to help us spread the word.
 

Thanks for your help,
 

Team Rosen

Click here to donate to Rosen’s campaign to keep this ad running.




The Real Truth about Trumps DACA Plans

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 23:47:34 +0000

Let me make this clear. Donald Trump and the Republicans want NO DEAL on DACA. They want them expelled from Our Country. BUT, they “need to do it in such a way, that the Democrats end up taking the blame for DACA failing. So, they offer a fix for CHIP, but NOT for DACA, instead using the line they used for the last CR, “We will deal with it “next time”. The proposed resolution would extend till Feb. 23rd. DACA Expires March 5th. That gives them 10 days to “get er done”. They haven't been willing to discuss it for the last 3 months. They only offered CHIP in hopes that DACA could be put off, yet again. Now they want to let it expire at which time they will blame the Democrats for letting it “die” and the Dreamers being deported. Trump is so desperate he has sent out the following email twice in the same day, begging his trolls to sign his “petition”. Someone forgot to tell him I didnt vote for him and never would and switched parties as I could never support ANY party that picked him as their candidate, let alone President. So I got one at 8:00 am and the last one(presented below) at 4:18 pm. After he talked to Schumer in the White House. He refers to “Dreamers” as Illegal Immigrants and says not to let Schumer Shut It Down over these “illegal Immigrants” They have no intention of EVER allowing “ a bill of love” to pass.  Donald Trump will begin deporting dreamers on March 6th and then Democrats will have No say in helping them. The Republicans then plan to “use this” as a way to Show “Democrats” cant protect anyone, only Republicans can. They will use this to try and get reelected again. And before they do, I give you the real Trump/Republican plan and belief on Dreamers This is a copy without meta tags and pictures included. Call your Senators before its to late.  Here it is. Decide for yourself! :

(image)

Trump Pence Make America Great Again

Dennis,

I’ve warned Chuck Schumer not to shut down the American government over ILLEGAL immigrants.

Now he needs to hear from the most powerful force in our nation: YOU -- the American voter.

I need you to join millions just like you who are signing a written statement that I will put in every liberal obstructionist’s office -- especially those facing tough re-elections in beautiful red states that I won BIG.
 
FROM: DENNIS, AN AMERICAN VOTER
TO: SENATE DEMOCRATS

DO NOT SHUT DOWN THE GOVERNMENT, DO NOT HOLD OUR MILITARY HOSTAGE, AND DO NOT DENY HEALTH CARE TO 9 MILLION AMERICAN CHILDREN ALL FOR THE SAKE OF PROTECTING ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS. AMERICANS COME FIRST!

SIGN YOUR NAME IMMEDIATELY >>

Thank you,

President Trump Signature Headshot
Donald J. Trump

(image)




IN-Sen: Sen. Cory Booker (D. NJ) Goes All In To Keep Joe Donnelly's (D) Seat Blue

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 21:58:13 +0000

Received this e-mail today from U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D. NJ) in support of U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly’s (D. IN) re-election campaign: Sen. Joe Donnelly (D. IN) Last year, I had the privilege of traveling to Indiana with my good friend and colleague Senator Joe Donnelly to talk to Hoosiers about defending health care, improving education, and staying engaged on the issues that matter most. Here’s what you need to know about Joe: He’s a crucial voice in the coalition fighting for the middle class. But he’s up for re-election this year and his race is already becoming a key target for Republicans. The New York Times and The Washington Post agree that Joe is one of the most vulnerable senators in the country. Dark money groups have already spent millions trying to defeat him. And Donald Trump has promised to “campaign against him like you wouldn’t believe.” We need to have Joe’s back. Will you contribute today to help Joe win re-election and protect Indiana’s Democratic Senate seat? Keeping Joe in the Senate is critical to preventing Republicans from getting a bigger majority -- and it’s a must-win for Democrats if we’re going to take back the Senate this year. All that stands in the way of Republicans taking another Senate seat is grassroots supporters like you. Please chip in today to re-elect Joe Donnelly and keep a champion for the middle class in Washington. On Joe’s behalf -- thank you, Cory Click here to donate to Donnelly’s re-election campaign. [...]



Upcoming State Legislative Special Elections

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 23:33:26 +0000

There are 16 special elections coming up over the next month, with several competitive races in Florida, New Hampshire, and Connecticut (and several districts we have a chance at flipping in Missouri, Kentucky, and Minnesota).  Here is a comprehensive list of all the state legislative special elections through February 2018: January 23rd: Pennsylvania House District 35. Democratic-held seat. Located near Pittsburgh in Allegheny County. Clinton beat Trump 58-39 and the last Democrat won 63-38. Safe D.  February 6th: Missouri House District 39. Republican-held seat in a rural suburb of Kansas City covering Ray, Carroll, and Chariton Counties. Trump won it 71-24 and the Republican was unopposed in 2016 and 2014, although the Republican only won the district 55-44 in 2012. Safe R.  Missouri House District 97. *Race to Watch*. Republican-held seat southwest of St. Louis covering parts of St. Louis and Jefferson Counties near Arnold, Missouri. Trump won the district 61-33, although in 2012, the Republican only won it 52-48. Mike Reves (D) is running against David Linton (R) Likely R.  Missouri House District 129. Republican-held seat. Rural suburb of Springfield Missouri in Dallas and Laclede Counties. Trump won it 80-16. Nothing to see here. Safe R.  Missouri House District 144. Republican-held seat. Rural southeast district covering several state parks between Farmington and Poplar Bluff. Trump won it 78-19. The Republican won it with no less than 66% between 2012 and 2016. Safe R.  February 12th: Minnesota Senate District 54. *Race to Watch* Democratic-held seat that swung for Trump located southeast of St. Paul covering parts of Washington and Dakota Counties. It’s largest city is Cottage Grove. Trump eked out a win 46-45, while the Democrat won it 53-47. In 2012, Obama won it 53-45 and the Democrat won it 64-36. Karla Bigham (DFL) will run against either James Brunsgaard III (R) or Denny McNemara (R) after their primary. Leans D.  Minnesota State House 23B. *Race to Watch* Republican-held seat in rural southern Minnesota near Mankato covering parts of Blue Earth, La Sueur, Waseca, and Watonwan Counties. Trump won it 59-33, but Obama got 48% in 2012. No Democrat ran in 2016, 2014, or 2012. Melissa Wagner (DFL) will run against either Jeremy Murison (R) or Scott Sanders (R) after their primary. Leans R.  February 13th:  Florida State House 72. *Race to Watch*. Republican-held seat located in Sarasota County south of Tampa. Trump won the district 50-46, while Obama got 48% in 2012. The Republican won 58-42 in 2016 and 54-46 in 2012. Margaret Good (D) will run against James Buchanan (R). Leans R.  Georgia House District 175. Republican-held seat located in south Georgia west of Valdosta in Brooks, Lowndes, and Thomas Counties. Trump won the district 61-37. The Republican ran unopposed in 2016 and 2014, and beat the Democrat 71-30 in 2012. Rant: Even if it was more competitive, I wouldn’t put much faith in Democrats in my state as they lost a special election 2 weeks ago in a district Clinton won (state house 111) thanks to absolutely no GOTV and a 6% turn out (compare that to the 33% turnout in the Wisconsin special election this week). Safe R.   Oklahoma State Senate 27. Republican-held seat located in the panhandle of Oklahoma. Trump won it 84-11. A Democrat is running but…Safe R.  February 17th:  Louisiana House District 86. Republican-held seat located east of Baton Rouge and north of Lake Pontchartrain in Tangipahoa Parish. Trump won it 73-23. Safe R.  February 20th:  Kentucky House District 49. *Race to Watch* Republican-held seat that flipped in 2016, located south of Louisville in Bullitt County. Trump won it 73-23, but the Republican beat the Democratic incumbent by less than 1%. In 2014, the Democrat won it 53-47. Linda Belcher (D) is running against Rebecca Johnson (R). Likely R. Mississippi Ho[...]



PA-18: As Trump Tries To Save Rick Saccone (R), Let's Keep Conor Lamb's (D) Ad Up On The Air

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 20:24:53 +0000

Received this e-mail today from former Federal prosecutor and Marine Veteran Conor Lamb’s (D. PA-18) campaign for the special election to fill disgraced Rep. Tim Murphy’s (R. PA-18) seat: Friend – While the President was in town stumping for Rick Saccone yesterday, we released our first TV ad. While local news was covering the visit, we wanted to make sure we had a chance to share Conor’s story with PA-18 voters. Take a look at the ad and help us keep it on the air for the next 52 days by chipping in $5 or more every week until March 13th » x YouTube Video Conor grew up in this district, served in the Marines, and worked as a federal prosecutor. He’s running for Congress to get things done for the people of Southwestern Pennsylvania by fighting for jobs, health care, and Social Security. And Conor is the only candidate calling for new leadership in Washington from both parties.  The response to our ad has been fantastic, and we want to make sure that we can show as many voters as possible that Conor is a different kind of candidate before the March 13th special election. But TV time is in short-supply with super PACs spending more than $800,000 just this week to attack Conor and support his opponent -- funded by Paul Ryan’s friend Joe Ricketts, the anti-union billionaire of the Chicago Cubs. Every little bit helps when we need to reach as many voters we can. Can you chip in $5 or more every week to help us spread the word about Conor?  Thanks for everything, ConorLamb.com Click here to donate to Lamb’s campaign. And if you want to double down, VoteVets is helping with GOTV efforts. Here’s the e-mail I received from VoteVets today: Wow, first Trump visits Pennsylvania to save a House seat today, and now according to the New York Times, Republicans are "preparing a multimillion-dollar advertising campaign to stave off another embarrassing special election defeat in a district that was gerrymandered to stay Republican." Conor. Lamb. Can. Win. But he needs you. He needs all of us. The Election is less than two months away. Donate to Marine veteran Conor Lamb's campaign as part of VoteVets 48-hour emergency fundraising drive. It ends tonight. Do it now: http://action.votevets.org/conor-lamb We're gonna do this.  - The team at VoteVets Click here to donate to VoteVets’ GOTV efforts. [...]



Jeff Bleich - The Corporate Candidate for CA Lt. Governor

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 21:09:35 +0000

Note: There’s an email circulating among progressive circles that I felt needed to be shared to a bigger audience. The stakes are just too high for this information to fly under the radar. 




CO-Gov: Tom Tancredo (R) Used His Facebook Page To Push Racist Images & Seth Rich Conspiracy

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 18:52:28 +0000

Kudos to Media Matters for not only highlighting gubernatorial candidate, Rep. Tom Tancredo’s (R. CO) long racist and anti-immigration past, they’re also highlighting how he’s been using social media to push his crazy, batshit talking points: Tancredo’s toxic rhetoric has extended to his social media. During his time as a pundit, he shared conspiratorial and racist viral images on his Facebook page. He shared images suggesting that Hillary Clinton killed former Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich, United Nations official John Ashe, anti-Semitic writer Victor Thorn, and process server Shawn Lucas.   There is absolutely no truth to those claims. Tancredo has also repeatedly shared racist images on his Facebook page. Those images claimed that Democrats keep black voters as slaves on their “plantation,” responded to Black Lives Matter with "White Lives Matter," said that “celebrating diversity” only leads to massacres, and suggested that non-European immigrants just come to the United States to “bitch, collect welfare, wage jihad, and replace the American constitution with Sharia law.” You can click here to see the images Media Matters captured from Tancredo’s campaign Facebook page. Sadly, Tancredo is the GOP frontrunner but luckily for us, our frontrunner in the Democratic primary is Rep. Jared Polis (D. CO-02) who is a fierce fighter of the Resistance against the Tancredo/Trump agenda. Today, I received this beautiful e-mail from Polis that is an open letter to his daughter, Cora, about why the Women’s March is essential: One year ago, my three-year-old daughter Cora and I had the opportunity to join millions in the Women's March for equality, respect, and justice. This year, I wrote an open letter to Cora on civic engagement and why we also plan to march tomorrow: An open letter to my daughter - Cora, It’s already been one year — and almost a third of your life so far! — since we participated in the big Women’s March in Washington D.C. I’m excited to have the opportunity to march with you again this year in Denver! I know at the age of three, you’re only just beginning to sense the importance of the fellowship we shared with millions of civic activists around the country last year, and that we will share again tomorrow. And while I’m sad that the first President you will know is not only an unacceptable role model but in many ways a representative of the past that we thought we’d left behind, I am heartened by how our community is responding and resisting. I hope that as you grow up, you look back on these marches the same way I look back on the equal rights and anti-war rallies I attended with your grandparents when I was a kid. I hope tomorrow’s march helps open the door for you to a lifetime of joining with others to fight for a better, kinder, more equal world. For all the great things about the world you were born into, there is still a lot of work to do. We still live in a state where a woman earns 81 cents to a man’s dollar. We still live in a nation where a woman’s right to make her own health care decisions is under attack. We still live in a place where sexual harassment and assault happen, and people blame the victim. I entered public office because I believe in the power of public policy, changing the laws to reflect our values and create a better future. But policy is not the only thing that matters. Many of the problems we face today will not be solved through legislation or by politicians. They’ll be solved by people from all walks of life coming together to break stereotypes, break cultural barriers, and break glass ceilings. That’s why we marched last year. That’s why we’re planning on marching tomorrow. Despite the challenges and uncertainty of this moment in our history, there are [...]



VA-Sen: Tim Kaine (D) Fights Back Against Trump & Ryan Zinke's Offshore Drilling Plans

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 16:50:05 +0000

Received this e-mail today from U.S. Senator Tim Kaine’s (D. VA) re-election campaign: Sen. Tim Kaine (D. VA)   It's been nearly a week since we last emailed you about our offshore drilling concerns, and we have nothing to report. That's right, we've gotten complete radio silence from the Trump administration. We can't say we're surprised. Avoiding responsible governing in favor of showmanship and Twitter? Not exactly a new and exciting tactic for these guys. But it's irresponsible nonetheless. Because Virginia's leaders -- and even more importantly, Virginia's citizens -- have spoken up on this issue. On Saturday, we sent you a key survey to get your take and thousands of respondents weighed in. It just couldn't be any clearer: Expanding offshore drilling will hurt Virginia, and everyone knows it. The move by the Trump administration to exempt Florida from this major change in policy while ignoring other states is hypocritical at best and brazenly partisan at worst. But of course, partisanship *isn't* actually the worst thing here -- negative impact on our coastal communities and naval operations is. We shouldn't stand for this. Add your name to tell Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and President Trump that Virginia deserves the same consideration as any other coastal state. If we've learned anything in the last year, it's that collective action gets things done. Speaking up, signing petitions, making calls -- all of it makes a difference. So please, lend your voice to this critical fight: Sign this petition to protect Virginia's coasts from offshore drilling. Thank you for all you do. We'll be in touch with updates. -Team Kaine Click here to add your name. [...]



The politics of Sustainability

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 14:55:22 +0000

As Democrats embark on a ten-month campaign to take back Congress, it's clear they need a unifying message.  Because Republicans are defined by Trump, Dems could unite on the theme, "lock him up."  While satisfying, this slogan doesn't capture the depravity of Trump's reign or the fact that Republicans have sold their souls uniting behind him.   A better solution for Democrats would be to focus on sustainability. Within the environmental movement, sustainability means: "avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance."  The key notion is that we live within a system that, to function properly, has to be balanced. What is true for the environment is also true for the US economy and for our national security.  Democrats must have a sustainable vision for each of these systems. Environment: Trump views the environment as a free resource to be used with impunity.  The Republican attitude towards global climate change, and the environment in general, is shaped by three notions:  The first is dominion; that humans have the right to exploit our natural resources.  The second notion is exclusion, which argues that environmental costs, such as pollution, are outside the economic system and, therefore, have no bearing on economic projections (thus coal companies claim to be exempt from the downstream consequences of mining).  The third is denial; Republicans deny the reality of global climate change and make policy in a fact-free zone. Trump touts a policy of "energy dominance."  This broad policy includes support for out-of-favor energy sources such as coal and nuclear power and features opening up previously off-limits petroleum resources such as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and US coastal waters.  (It also includes eliminating regulations on existing power plants and drilling sites.) Republicans claim the moral authority for Trump's perspective.  Their perspective is driven by "dominionism;" the right-wing Christian notion that God has given humans dominion over the earth.  Republicans ignore the consequences of pollution.  And, deny there are any long-term consequences of their policies -- such as global climate change. The politics of sustainability argues that global climate change is real and consideration of it, and the environment in general, should influence all of national policy decisions. Economy: Trump's view of the economy parallels his perspective on the environment.  (Its fed by the classic Calvinistic view of capitalism.) Once again, there are three complementary notions.  The philosophy of dominion argues that in a "Christian capitalist" economy there are inevitably winners and losers: the "winners" are likely those chosen by God to go to heaven. The philosophy of exclusion argues that in a capitalist economy government has only limited authority.  Republicans want government to stay away from all business transaction; they argue that the economy should be restricted only by "the invisible hand" of the marketplace. Finally, the Republican economic ideology is based upon denial.  At the moment, Republicans boast of a booming stock market and low unemployment; they ignore the reality that this economy disproportionately favors the rich and powerful.  (Republicans base their optimism upon the widely discredited notion of "trickle-down economics.)  Republicans take the position that prosperity is inevitable and ignore economic history that says booms inevitably end with catastrophic consequences. The politics of sustainability argues that you cannot separate democracy and the economy; in order for democracy to flourish, the economy must work for everyone.  Thus, if capitalistic institutions are unfair, the government must intervene to protect working Americans. Nati[...]



A Political Ad (With Subtitles)

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 14:21:27 +0000

x

What has the Scottish National Party ever done for us? 

Well, since I live in Missouri, they haven’t affected my life directly. But this ad released today gives me a picture of what politics can be like, a picture of what a government of, by, and for the people can accomplish, and a picture of how to present that message. 

Scotland. A shining city on the hill. 




Republicans—with the help of complicit media—intent on blaming Democrats for GOP government shutdown

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 13:48:38 +0000

Please stop, Washington Post"House approves bill to keep government open as Senate Democrats take heat for threatening to block it"? From whom, exactly, are Senate Democrats taking heat? Polling shows voters will blame Republicans for a shutdown, as well they should, with Republicans controlling both houses of Congress and the White House. And in fact, it’s not just Democrats opposing the bill in the Senate—at least two Republicans do, as well, as the Post article notes.

And yet we get not only that headline but this:

“My Democratic colleagues’ demands on illegal immigration, at the behest of their far-left base, have crowded out all other important business,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Thursday night. 

Their far-left base? Apparently—though the Post doesn’t note it—McConnell thinks that 79 percent of Americans, including 64 percent of Republicans, are the Democrats’ far-left base. That’s the level of support a recent Quinnipiac poll found for not just allowing Dreamers to remain in the U.S. but putting them on a path to citizenship. The article refers in passing to polling supporting the Democrats’ position, but not until more than 25 paragraphs later, and not as a contrast to McConnell’s crassly cynical messaging.

One thing the Post doesn’t offer up in an article full of Republicans quoted lamenting the possibility that the Children’s Health Insurance Program won’t be renewed right now? That Republicans could have passed a clean CHIP renewal back in September, but they were holding health care for nine million kids as leverage.

So when the Post says “Senate Democrats take heat,” here’s what it means: The Republicans quoted in that article are attempting to apply heat, and the Washington Post is helping them.




A Possible Outcome to the Shutdown Show Tonight

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 13:11:27 +0000

OK, so six republicans have come out publicly against the House bill:

www.nbcnews.com/…

Not only does that mean that there are not enough votes in the Senate to stop a filibuster, there are not enough votes to pass the bill straight up nor to drop the nuclear option, eliminate the filibuster, and ram the bill through. 

Neither the Senate nor the house are willing to vote on a compromise bill, nor have they considered democratic amendments. 

Here’s the thing. If allowed an up or down vote, the 54 Billion plus up to defense in the ‘budget deal’, DACA fix, CHIP fix, FAA re-authorization, and other ‘government maintenance’ measures would pass easily. It might even be a 70% plus condorcet winner of all the available options. It might even be a decent spending bill in its own right.

Republicans know this. 

The House is pushing a bill, and McConnell has given up any pretense of leadership on the issue. He telegraphed days ago that he would take the bill from the House, and put it up for a vote at the last minute, come what may. He might have a shot t the narrative on a party line vote, but he just looks completely ineffectual if he loses by an outright majority. 

He might not even get that far. The real magic number is 17 Republicans who strongly oppose a shutdown. 11 Republicans would make for a supermajority that could invoke cloture on a bill and push through a bipartisan cleanup amendment. 17 republicans could amend the senate rules under regular order, force an immediate vote, and send an amended bill back to the house, essentially turning Paul Ryan’s tactic against him. 

We might even see Yurtle face a vote of no confidence. 

Conclusion:

OK, so this diary is happy talk and shameless speculation, but I’ve never seen such a weak republican position in my life. We’ve been on bizarro world for a hell of a long time now. 




NV-Sen: Jacky Rosen (D) Hits Back At Back Jeff Sessions Idiotic War On Marijuana

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 03:44:31 +0000

Received this e-mail today from Rep. Jacky Rosen’s (D. NV) U.S. Senate campaign:

(image)

Nevadans and millions of Americans in states across the country have voted to legalize, regulate and tax marijuana. The jobs created, millions of dollars in state revenue and medical benefits have been indisputable.

But the Trump administration, led by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, is now threatening to crack down on states that have chosen to legalize. This is a blatant infringement on states’ rights and a threat to our economies.

Add your name to tell Jeff Sessions: Hands off states' marijuana laws.

I’m fighting to prohibit federal targeting of legal businesses here in Nevada. Republican Senator Dean Heller, however, voted to confirm Jeff Sessions as attorney general last year, knowing full well his history of hostility toward marijuana legalization. Dean Heller and Jeff Sessions are out of touch with everyday Nevadans.

I need your help to send a message to this administration that Nevada should be free of federal interference with our laws. Please, click here to add your name right away.

Thank you,

Jacky

Click here to add your name.




Our Way or the Kids Get It!: GOP Government by Hostage Taking Returns: 'BradCast' 1/18/2018

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 01:49:06 +0000

Plus: Our own 'Fake News' awards! And 2017 breaks heat records... On today's BradCast, Republicans have returned to form, via government by hostage taking. Vote our way or the kids get it it! [Audio link to show follows below.] The chaos in Congress, as Republicans race to come up with a plan to avoid a Government shutdown this weekend, echoes what happened just last week as they they tried to pass a reauthorization and extension of the FISA Amendment Act in the U.S. House. Though GOP leadership and the White House had long lobbied for the reauthorization, Donald Trump unleashed chaos when he tweeted against his own bill. That legislation, which allows for warrantless surveillance of emails and phone calls by all Americans, ultimately passed after Paul Ryan called the President to explain it, and enough Democrats came on board to help them in the House. (It passed today, again with the help of Democrats in the Senate, and now heads to Trump's desk to be signed.) On Thursday, as Congressional Republicans attempted to pass a short-term spending bill to keep the government open -- after a long-term deal was plunged into chaos when Trump refused a deal that included immigrants from "shithole countries" -- Trump did it again. He tweeted against a GOP stopgap plan which includes reauthorization of the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The reauthorization, which both helps sick kids and saves the government billions of dollars, was included by Republicans in hopes of enticing Democrats to help them avoid a full government shutdown as of midnight Friday. Most Dems don't seem to be buying it -- despite Ryan, once again, calling the White House to get Trump back on board -- as they appear unwilling to help Republicans out of this jam without the inclusion of a fix to the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Republicans refuse to include a fix to DACA, the Obama-era protection against deportation of some 800,000 children of immigrants, which Trump reversed, in their short-term measure. Dems say they won't support such a bill unless DACA is included. In other words, the children helped by both CHIP and DACA are now being held as hostages by the Republican Party. The measure squeaked by tonight in the U.S. House, but passage in the Senate, where 60 votes are needed to overcome a filibuster, is far from certain. Then, after Donald Trump's fake "Fake News" awards face plant on Wednesday night, we have a few real "Fake News" awards to offer, based on actual facts, as we reach the end of Trump's agonizingly long first year in office this weekend. Finally, Desi Doyen joins us for the latest Green News Report, with bad news out of China, good news out of the Detroit Auto Show (and even from McDonald's), and some late breaking news from NOAA and NASA on the record heat of 2017, as man-made global warming continues apace in the new year... CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO TODAY'S SHOW!... * * * While we post The BradCast here every day, and you can hear it across all of our great affiliate stations and websites, to automagically get new episodes as soon as they're available sent right to your computer or personal device, subscribe for free at iTunes, Stitcher, TuneIn or our native RSS feed! [Cross-posted from The BRAD BLOG...] [...]



PA-18: Rep. Joe Kennedy III (D. MA) Helps Conor Lamb (D) Keep The Democratic Wave Rolling

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 01:44:22 +0000

Received this e-mail today from Rep. Joe Kennedy III (D. MA-04) in support of former Federal Prosecutor and Marine Veteran Conor Lamb’s (D. PA-18) campaign in the special election to fill disgraced Rep. Tim Murphy’s (R. PA-18) seat:

(image)
Conor Lamb (D. PA-18)

Virginia. South Dakota. Alabama. Wisconsin.

There's a Democratic wave sweeping the country.

Next up: Pennsylvania.

Conor Lamb is running to fill the seat vacated when Rep. Tim Murphy resigned in the fall. A Marine and former federal prosecutor focused on the opioid epidemic, Conor has spent his life fighting to make America its very best. Born and bred in the district, he intimately understands the concerns of working families.

Chip in now to support Conor and keep the Democratic wave rolling.

Conor's opponent, Rick Saccone, proudly tells people that he "was Trump before Trump was Trump” like that's a good thing.

Trump likes the sound of that so much he's there today campaigning against Conor.

I'd take our grassroots movement over a Trump appearance any day. Click here to help Conor fight back.

Saccone has said his top priority in Congress will be supporting Paul Ryan's agenda. To refresh: jeopardizing American health care, cutting Social Security and Medicare, and threatening the bottom line of working families to pay for corporate tax cuts.

Help Conor show the GOP that our country rejects that agenda.

We can flip this seat. But we've got to move fast; the special election is on March 13.

Contribute now to fuel our movement to take back the House.

Joe

Click here to donate to Lamb’s campaign.




Nancy Pelosi Owns the Narrative

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 01:36:08 +0000

The Constitution authorizes Congress to appropriate money for government spending. It’s a check and balance on the President and the executive branch.

When the Republicans have a majority in Congress, they take the power of the purse to extremes beyond normal checks and balances. The heavy-handed obstruction they used during the Obama administration made them look like they’d rather have one-party rule, instead of democracy.

Now it looks like one party may be one too many for them. They have majorities in the House and Senate and a Republican in the White House. They have no check and balance reason to hold up government spending but here we are on the verge of a government shutdown.

Nancy Pelosi answered questions about the slow-motion disintegration of our government today. A reporter asked her to comment on the latest Republican proposal for a continuing resolution.

She said it was a dog shit sundae.




SCOTUS puts temporary hold on North Carolina redistricting map order

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 00:50:33 +0000

Last week, a federal court in NC struck down the Republican drawn districting map ruling that the Reds had drawn it in such a way to advantage themselves over the Blues.

Specifically, the state panel of federal judges claimed that the Reeps drew the map to guarantee 

 “domination of the state’s congressional delegation.”

The court then ordered that a new map be drawn up by January 24th.

However, in a surprise twist, the SCOTUS blocked the federal Court's order temporarily.

(ORDER LIST: 583 U.S.)
THURSDAY, JANUARY 18, 2018
ORDER IN PENDING CASE
17A745 RUCHO, ROBERT A., ET AL. V. COMMON CAUSE, ET AL.

The application for stay presented to The Chief Justice and
by him referred to the Court is granted, and it is ordered that
the order of the United States District Court for the Middle
District of North Carolina, case Nos. 1:16-CV-1026 and 1:16-CV-
1164, entered January 9, 2018, is stayed pending the timely
filing and disposition of an appeal in this Court.

Justice Ginsburg and Justice Sotomayor would deny the
application for stay.

The other two more liberal-leaning SCOTUS judges have remained mum on the issue.

Last week, Republicans argued that the federal panel concocted their own legal theory without considering the current case of Gill v. Whitford, a partisan gerrymandering case in Wisconsin that was ultimately struck down when the court blocked a map-redistricting order.

Advocates, namely Common Cause and Women League of Voters, are claiming Republicans are trying to maintain a death grip on congressional maps through partisan gerrymandering before waiting for precedent set by possible tests in the Gill v. Whitford case and another case out of Maryland, Benisek v. Lamone ​​​​​​, which would ultimately reveal the facts surrounding these gerrymandered maps in NC to be "shocking."

It's important to remember that this stay is only temporary. But now the likelihood of a new map being drawn for NC in time for the Congressional midterms has severely diminished.

Tonight’s brief order indicated that the lower court’s decision will stay on hold until Republicans can file their appeal and the Supreme Court can rule on it. As a practical matter, the court likely will not act on that appeal for some time, possibly until after it rules on the Wisconsin and Maryland gerrymandering cases. As election law expert Rick Hasen points out, this means that no matter how the Supreme Court rules, the likelihood that new maps will be in place for the 2018 elections is quite low.

While this deals a major blows to liberal partisan hopefuls looking to NC as a national precedent, the battle is far from over. And with the momentum of the Blue Typhoon crashing into places like Wisconsin yesterday (with a 27 point shift!!), North Carolina may not be as instrumental in flipping the house or state legislatures as previously hypothesized




Testimony on "Steele dossier" in front of House Intel to be released, immediately (updated)

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 00:18:06 +0000

Well, this just got interesting, Steve Bannon stonewalls the House Intel Committee, and lookie here, it seems that the committee is going to release the whole seven hours of testimony from Glenn Simpson of Fusion GPS from November. Every single member of the committee voted a yes on this proposal as well, consider that every single member Democrat or Republican is fed up enough to do this. As we know, the previous time that testimony was released from the Senate Judiciary testimony, the Trump WH got burned, and they got burned badly. The GOP was blowing smoke, trying to kid us about what triggered the investigation, that was blown out of the water.

The most juicy part from the article:

The source indicated the transcripts would post on the House Intelligence Committee website later Thursday.

Well, isn’t that interesting! Not only are they to be released, it is to be done post-haste. Considering the release has been stonewalled until now, since November, and now all of a sudden the committee votes to release it all immediately, something is up. While Bannon may have dodged questions, it looks like the Intel Committee is not content to just let the White House off on this one. We can figure out why the committee released it, stonewalling from the WH is not something congress is very amenable to after a certain point, and they will be spiteful. Now, why was it so important to hold it up before this is the question? I’ll try to update if I see anything come up on the contents and if there is any considerably interesting details. Probably going to be some repeats from the Senate testimony, but who knows what will come up.




Cartoon: Donkey's Choice?

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 23:25:47 +0000

paulschicklercartoons.com  Like me on Facebook     Follow me at @pschickler




PA-Lt. Gov: John Fetterman (D) Keeps Up The Fight For Congress To Protect DREAMers

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 23:06:29 +0000

Received this e-mail today from Gisele Fetterman on behalf of her husband, Braddock Mayor John Fetterman’s (D. PA) Lt. Governor campaign: If you've ever wondered if you know a DREAMer, you do. I am a DREAMer. By the time I was eight, the fear of violence in my country became too much for my mother, and she needed to find a safer environment where she could raise my brother and I. As an eight-year-old, I was nervous and excited at the prospect of a long trip to a new place. As I packed my favorite doll and a journal inside of our suitcase, I had no idea that we would be leaving to permanently resettle in the United States. When we arrived in wintertime to New York City, my mom put on a brave face as she braced for one of the biggest challenges of her life. On top of finding an affordable apartment for us to live in and learning how to speak English, she was forced to reset her entire professional career path. Although she had a good job as a nutritionist back in Brazil, she quickly took jobs cleaning houses and hotel rooms, saying, "I would clean toilets in America forever and never look back, knowing that you're both safe and that you have a chance that you didn't otherwise have." My story is the story of millions of immigrants and DREAMers who have come to call the United States home. We work, study, and plan our futures in a country that has given us the opportunities that our parents could only dream of just a few years ago. And while some DREAMers may not have every piece of paper needed to prove their citizenship, they are as American as you and I. Sign my petition now to stand with DREAMers and protect 800,000 young people from deportation. We can’t wait any longer. Everyday I wake up so grateful to live here, and so thankful that my mother had the courage to seek out a better life for my brother and I. With three children of my own now, I understand my mother’s need to do everything possible to ensure the safety of her children — no matter what sacrifices she needed to make.  My gratitude is what inspires me daily to work to improve the lives of the families I serve.  I could have never dreamt that one day, that undocumented little girl would go on to dedicate her life to service, would be elected as a Delegate to the Democratic Convention or even invited to serve as a member of the electoral college.  My efforts to end food and clothing insecurity are inspired directly by my immigrant experience. Right now, 800,000 DREAMers who share similar stories to mine are on the verge of deportation in the United States. It is devastating that these young people are facing punishment for things they had no control over, and even worse — that their undocumented status is being used by Republican lawmakers to bargain for a long-term spending bill. DREAMers are so much more than their legal status, and they deserve to be given a clean vote on The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Stand with me and the other 800,000 DREAMers across the U.S. by signing my petition urging Congress to give DACA a clean vote now. Thank you,   Gisele Fetterman <3 Click here to add your name. [...]



PA-Sen: Sen. Ed Markey (D. MA) Helps Fellow net Neutrality Champ Bob Casey (D) Get Ready For Victory

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 22:28:35 +0000

Received this e-mail today from U.S. Senator Ed Markey (D. MA) in support of U.S. Senator Bob Casey, Jr.’s (D. PA) re-election campaign: Sen. Bob Casey, Jr. (D. PA) I wanted to talk to you today about my friend and colleague, Senator Bob Casey of Pennsylvania. Throughout his years in the U.S. Senate, Bob has been a giant for the blue-collar workers in his state. He has a reputation for being a calm, steady hand. And when the Trump Administration took over, Bob took the lead in pushing back against anti-middle class policies, unqualified and extreme nominees, and attempts to gut our health care system. Just to give you one example -- when Trump tried to ban Muslims from entering the country, Bob dropped what he was doing and headed straight to the airport to protect Pennsylvania families. Bob is always front-and-center in the fight for the middle class. Republicans know that as well -- and they're itching to defeat Bob and secure their majority in the Senate. Bob needs our help. He has a big deadline at the end of the month. Can you help by rushing in a contribution? Even $5 or $10 will do a great deal of good. Make no mistake, the path to retaking a Democratic Majority in the U.S. Senate runs squarely through Pennsylvania. Republicans know that, and they're pulling out all the stops to win in the state. They knocked on 195,000 doors to scare-up support for their tax scam. They'll be putting similar energy -- and millions of dollars, no doubt -- into defeating Bob. What happens in Bob's race will affect us all. Bob is fiercely protective of Medicare and Social Security. He's a staunch supporter of working families. He's a voice in the Senate we cannot afford to lose. If you can, help me help out Bob. Give $5 or more. Thank you. Ed Click here to donate to Casey’s re-election campaign. [...]



FL-Gov: Get Out Your Puke Bag, Sean Hannity Just Endorsed Ron DeSantis (R) For Governor

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 19:09:19 +0000

BARF!

Conservative radio host and Fox News anchor Sean Hannity interviewed Rep. Ron DeSantis on his radio show Wednesday, giving the Republican candidate for Florida governor a boost of support.

"I've known you all these years," Hannity said. "I cannot more enthusiastically endorse and completely support your run, and I really think the people of Florida will be blessed because I know what a strong leader you are."

"That means a lot to me," said DeSantis. "We've got a good opportunity to build on the success that Governor Scott has had. I think this tax bill is going to give us a tremendous, competitive advantage in Florida to create a lot of jobs. We have an opportunity to fix our activist courts and live under the rule of law."

It’s looking like DeSantis’ campaign is picking up steam in this crowded GOP primary. Over on the Democratic side, it’s looking like former Rep. Gwen Graham (D. FL) is the leading contender:

Which one would carry overwhelmingly Democratic Leon County today? Gwen Graham easily, according to an internal poll by SEA Polling & Strategic Design. Graham receives 43 percent support, Gillum 29 percent, Philip Levine 3 percent, Chris King 2 percent, and Undecided 23 percent, the Jan. 8-11 telephone survey off 300 likely general election voters (MoE +/- 5.6 percent) found.

More from SEA's memo by Tom Eldon, who said he is unconnected to any gubernatorial campaign and conducted the poll for a private client:

###Gillum is better known than Graham, but carries higher negative ratings with a 51-27 rating.

###Graham has higher positives with 56% favorable and lower negatives at 17%.

###Despite strong job approval ratings, 46% believe it's time for someone else as Mayor to 40% who believe Gillum deserves to be re-elected.

###Gillum could possibly be struggling in this re-elect measure and the primary question due to
the well-publicized FBI investigation that continues to plague City hall.

I’m leaning more towards Graham as the best candidate. Click here to donate and get involved with her campaign.




MN-Sen: Sen. Maggie Hassan (D. NH) Helps Tina Smith (D) Get Ready To Defeat Michelle Bachmann (R)

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 18:27:53 +0000

Received this e-mail today from U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan (D. NH) in support of U.S. Senator Tina Smith’s (D. MN) re-election campaign:

(image)
Sen. Tina Smith (D. MN)

CNN is calling Minnesota “ground zero for a 2018 midterm election that could change control of Congress” and for good reason:

Far-right Republican Michele Bachmann is eyeing a run against Democratic Senator Tina Smith. If Democrats lose here, we lose all hope of taking back the Senate.

Will you help Democrats hold the line in Minnesota by giving $3 or more to help TinaSmith resist Bachmann’s corporate money machine? Democrats can’t win without you.

All eyes will be on Minnesota, and you can bet that Tina’s race will be a real nail-biter. Donald Trump only lost the state by little more than a point, and campaign experts say Minnesota is a swing state.

Tina is a fighter for access to quality education and a lifelong advocate for women’s health care — she even served as a Vice President at Planned Parenthood in the early 2000s.

We can’t afford to lose Tina in the Senate. If we do, we could be stuck with a Senator Bachmann — a rubberstamp for Trump’s extreme agenda. The worst part? Our chances of taking back a Democratic Senate go out the window.

This is really important: please click here to give $3 or as much as you can so that Democrats can hold the line in Minnesota and lock in our best chance at winning back the Senate.

Thank you for everything you do,

Team Maggie

Click here to donate to Smith’s campaign.




Democrats on CHIP messaging

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 18:16:01 +0000

This is just me ranting. I was wondering how difficult is it for democrats to demand a clean CHIP extension funding bill. This is another way of how Democrats  drop the ball on messaging. They should get together and announce that CHIP should not and will not be a negotiating instrument. We should not be negotiating with the lives and health of our children. We need to pass a CHIP extension today. They should beat this drum every day from now on.




PA-18: VoteVets & PA Democratic Party Double Down On GOTV Efforts For A Conor Lamb (D) Victory

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 18:03:21 +0000

Received two e-mails today regarding the upcoming special election in Pennsylvania for disgraced Rep. Tim Murphy’s (R. PA-18) congressional seat. The First one is from VoteVets: Do you want to send a clear message that Trump's policies are an abhorrent disgrace, even in "red" districts? Do you want to do it while taking the House back from Speaker Paul Ryan? Well, this is our chance. Today, Donald Trump visits Pennsylvania's 18th Congressional District, home to a special election in less than two months. Trump is campaigning for a man who calls himself "Trump before Trump." Democrats have, Conor Lamb, a Marine Corps veteran who can win this race. VoteVets is launching a 48-hour emergency fundraising drive for Conor to coincide with Trump's visit. Let's send a message that the president's involvement is a net-negative for Republicans. Chip in $3 to support Democrat Conor Lamb in the Pennsylvania Special Election happening in less than two months. Do it now. It's important. One magazine recently asked if Conor could be the next Doug Jones. Yes, he can. But it will require all of us chipping in.  Help make this fundraising drive for Conor a big one. - The team at VoteVets Click here to donate to Lamb’s campaign efforts. The second e-mail is from the Pennsylvania Democratic Party: Today, we're meeting up at offices in 4 locations around the 18th Congressional District to call and canvass for Conor Lamb. You can view the map of locations directly on our website at PADems.com/conor. Each of the four counties (Allegheny, Greene, Washington, and Westmoreland) that make up the 18th District will be calling and canvassing today from 12:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Join us at one of the events. We'll provide phone lists for callers and walk packets and literature for canvassers. There will be staff and volunteers on site to give you all the information you need to make a big difference in this campaign. There's no time to waste, join us and help tip the scales to Conor: PADems.com/conor. Thank you! Mitch Kates Political Director Pennsylvania Democratic Party Click here to RSVP to help get out the vote. [...]



Another Day for Democrats to Control The Narrative. Why Isn't It Happening?

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 17:54:24 +0000

Perception is reality. Do a quick search in google for news above. What do we get:

Trump hits the democrats for HIS failure to help build bipartisan support. Doesn’t have to be true, but it’s what the republicans do.

Ryan comes out, reinforcing that meme.

Democrats come out claiming their willing to shut down the Government over DACA.

Result: Democrats look like the one’s responsible for this shutdown, not Trump.

(image)

This is a failure of messaging, once again. Our representatives should be out there pointing out the obvious — the REPUBLICANS and TRUMP are pushing us toward a shutdown we don’t want.

All he and his cold-hearted republicans have to do is find a way to help 800,000 young Americans who want nothing more than to be here and be productive. And we’ll give you some funding for the wall! It’s already in the bill you dismissed!

Instead, the republicans are out pushing their agenda. Our side is trying to argue policy instead of emotion. Same old, same old.

And I’m darn sure if we do shut down, the blame will be on us even though it should be on the President. And we’ll be left wondering “Why?”

And it WON’T be because we are in the minority. Our microphones today are just as big as theres. We’re just not using them and saying anything correctly.

Get it together, people. This is the time to push back, together, and have a party announcement.

But we just hear crickets. At least where I look.

If you can’t at least have an article in a Google. search that favors your side of the isle, you’re not doing your job. That’s just simple fact. I’m not the guy making this up.




Frankentrump and his GOP Creators

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 16:30:22 +0000

Frankentrump. The immoral, single minded Eugenics based Monster created by the mad scientists of the Republican Party. A man-made creation whose sole purpose is the destruction of 200 yrs. of Freedom and progress. A monster whose abnormal brain focuses on destroying all thing good about our Country and removing more than 200 yrs. of Progress for the sole purpose of personal wealth and gain. This horrifying creation is now working to destroy his own creators by eliminating any morality and goodness left in his office. Originally born out of chain migrations and a racist parent, he evolved to grasp junk science theories of Eugenics that his hero Adolf Hitler used to try and destroy the Jewish race. He hid in the shadows, learning from his hero’s mistakes and trying to expand on his racist beliefs. Believing that White rich people were genetically superior, he advanced his beliefs to punish those of inferior stock, like immigrants, Blacks, women and the poor, disabled, mentally handicapped and veterans. He openly praised the groups while destroying the very policies that gave them Relevance. CHIP, DACA, Medicaid and benefits for disabled veterans were cut or slashed or eliminated, while continually denying the deconstruction efforts as "fake or false" news. He openly attacks the freedoms guaranteed to us by our founders, insisting they are flawed and biased. That restricting and condemning these freedoms is just common sense. That alienating us from the rest of the modern world makes us stronger and by not allowing dark skinned people immigration to our Country, we are making the Eugenics belief of genetic Nordic superiority to blossom and grow stronger through restricted breeding. A monster who calls Children who grew up in our culture and beliefs, who have contributed to our society and are highly educated and who obeyed our laws to contribute to the progress of our nation; "illegal aliens and criminals" for being brought here against their wills. He doesn’t want them destroying his genetic superiority and the superiority of the white race. Not being white means they shouldn’t be here. He believes poor children should not be allowed healthcare and thus shouldn’t infect the white breeding stock by being given a chance to get well and healthy. Their poor and thus deserve to die. He has managed to convince some African Americans that a fat rich senile monster who promotes racism somehow is looking out for them. Plantation owners used that argument too to rebuke antislavery theories and ideas. "The Massa got your back" Old fat white rich guys want you to succeed, while in fact they undo all the progressive policies put in place to insure your growth, claiming they in fact "just hold you back" That by discriminating against people of color, he is in fact, improving your lives. That is why he chooses to support racism and racist groups who want separation. Frankentrump twists and turns and outright lies to give himself Republican power and praise. He is an unqualified, eugenics racist who seek to re empower the white man’s place as master and leader of the free world. That isolation somehow make us look stronger and we must wall ourselves off from the rest of the world to do so. That trade with other countries is evil and hurts us, even though al[...]



Donald Trump to Speak at 'March for Life' as Republicans Across Country Ignore Health of Children

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 16:11:08 +0000

President Trump will speak Friday at the far-right March for Life. This makes him the first sitting president to speak at the rally in the 45 years the March has existed. Last year the Trump administration sent Vice President Pence to speak at the rally—another first.  Trump will address the anti-abortion protesters from the Rose Garden, which is the traditional location for policy announcements and diplomatic speeches. Trump previously endorsed “some form of punishment” for women who seek abortions.  Trump’s Shift on Abortion  Trump, who once called himself pro-choice, has worked to roll back abortion rights from the moment he took office. The administration promptly reinstated the Mexico City policy, sometimes known as the global gag rule. The policy prohibits health clinics that receive U.S. funds from talking about or providing abortion—even if the organizations do so with their own funds. It’s a move analysts say will result in thousands more maternal deaths, in the midst of an already escalating maternal healthcare crisis.  In the U.S., abortion clinics increasingly face a regulatory climate that makes abortion less accessible. Research shows these policies don’t stop abortion. They do, however, make it more expensive, and increase the likelihood that women will delay their abortions until the second trimester.  Trump and Republicans: Pro-Life, But Not for Children  Word that Trump would speak at the March for Life came amid heated debate about funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). This state program, which provides health coverage for 9 million low and moderate-income children, has long been targeted by “pro-life” Republican leaders. In September, funding for the program expired. And last year, they allowed a funding deadline to expire amid bickering over changes to the Affordable Care Act. A short-term funding extension temporarily prolonged the program, but funding is about to end again.  Children could die as a result. Without the funding, even children whose lives depend on health care will not have access to basic medical services. While Republicans advocate for fetuses with policies that could kill women, they’re content to let living, breathing kids die.  The government will run out of money Friday, spurring a government shutdown. In an effort to get Democrats to sign onto a number of Republican budget policies, Republicans have added CHIP funding to a slate of other legislation. They’ve effectively weaponized children’s health care—and the lives of children who depend on it—against Democrats.  The Abortion Fight Heats Up  As Republicans repeatedly demonstrate their lack of concern for living children, they continue to pass draconian anti-abortion legislation. Abortion clinics in Ohio may soon be required to bury aborted remains. The Ohio Senate this week passed legislation mandating burial or cremation and requiring abortion clinics to pay for these procedures. It’s unclear how abortion clinics are to manage the earliest abortions, which produce no body.  But Republicans remain undeterred by logic, by the needs of women, or by the fact that abortion regulations can kill women. The hope is that a Republican-packed Supreme Court will eventually hear a case[...]



Why Do We Behaviorally Train Congress to Only Respond to Rich People?

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 13:06:09 +0000

thinkprogress.org/... The Senate as an institution is much more responsive to wealthy constituents’ views than to middle- and low-income voters’ policy preferences, according to political scientist Thomas J. Hayes of the University of Connecticut. In research first published in 2012 and released in print on Monday by Political Research Quarterly, Hayes demonstrates a chronic neglect of non-rich Americans by the upper chamber of Congress. With income and wealth inequality spiking to historic highs after 2002, Hayes wondered if past research finding that members of congress were most responsive to the middle class and the wealthy would hold up under the increased societal strain of extreme inequality and the increased political influence that wealthy interests tend to obtain. In 2011 I was part of a delegation from Occupy NYC that had been invited to DC to have a secret meeting with members of the progressive caucus. That meeting included at least twelve lawmakers including Keith Ellison, Raul Grijalva, Jesse LeGreca, and Yvette Clark. The purpose of the meeting was to see how members of the progressive caucus could support the Occupy movement without incurring the wrath of people inside the movement who believed that any cooperation with democrats or republicans would lead to the message being co-opted from the movement. I was part of a minority that believed the only way to achieve success would be to build a coalition that translated the raw energy of the street into progressive legislative accomplishments. Democrats controlled the White House and the Senate at this time so I was under the impression that they would be responsive to our needs. The meeting lasted about an hour and was supposed to be the first of many. Sadly, it was the only one of its kind that I am aware of. We discussed how members of congress could support the movement in the media, what our short term objectives were, and what we wanted to accomplished in the long run. I was a little out of my league sitting at that meeting as a 28 year old dressed in black with a heavy backpack tossed in the corner. My one major contribution was when the coversation turned to messaging I said that democrats need to stop talking about the middle class. 90% of people in the U.S believe they are part of the middle class which is a fiction. I said we should talk about working people and use the term working people because frankly it’s a more apt term. I left the meeting heartened and Rep. Clark invited us into her congressional office for a post meeting wrap up and to have a frank conversation. It was in her office that I learned of one of the biggest road blocks that prevented congress from being responsive to the needs of working class people.  Rep. Clark asked us “Do you know what we have to do every day? We have to get on the phone and call donors for one to two hours a day. They keep track of how much we raise and how long we spend doing this.” That took me off guard. I understood that congress people had to fund raise in order to keep their seats but a congress person directly calling donors to ask for money? That seemed to me to fundamentally change the dynamic of the interaction from a place of strength to putting the lawmaker in a [...]



OH-Gov: Richard Cordray (D) Rips Trump's "Zealots" & "Toadies" For Axing Payday Loan Rules

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 08:16:10 +0000

Hit them hard: The former head of a consumer watchdog agency Wednesday lambasted his replacement in a series of tweets for deciding to reconsider a rule aimed at protecting consumers from abusive payday lending practices. Richard Cordray, a former Ohio attorney general who resigned in late November to seek the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, blasted the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s decision to reconsider payday lending rules that he had helped to craft as head of the agency. The bureau confirmed it would reconsider the rules in a statement Tuesday. “Truly shameful action by the interim pseudo-leaders of the CFPB, announcing their plans to reconsider the payday lending rule just adopted in November,” Cordray tweeted. “Never mind many thousands of people stuck in debt traps all over the country. Consumers be damned!” The rules, which were among the last project Cordray worked on as head of the agency, would, among other things, require lenders to determine whether a borrower could afford to repay a loan with full interest within 30 days. The rules also would limit the number of loans lenders could make to a borrower. That and other provisions outraged the payday lending industry, which argued such regulations could drive them out of business. The rules were scheduled to go into effect in August 2019. Cordray, who was appointed by President Barack Obama, was replaced by White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney, who is serving as acting director of the consumer watchdog agency. Mulvaney has been a critic of the rules. Here’s a little more info: With the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau now under Trump administration leadership, the agency is deciding whether to stop or roll back a rule to clamp down on payday lenders. This assures renewed debate: Are payday lenders legal loan sharks? Their storefront businesses represent a $3.6 billion annual industry. Or are they a necessity in a paycheck-to-paycheck economy, where having to fork over high interest payments to cover current bills is preferable to fighting the repo man or a landlord keen on eviction? Under former agency director Richard Cordray, the consumer bureau established rules for borrowers and lenders. Payday companies used to require one thing before they would give a loan: a job. But under Cordray, a Democrat and Obama appointee who quit in late November and soon announced he would run for Ohio governor, the agency scheduled a series of verifications a lender would have to use. The biggest: Could the borrower really afford to repay the loan with interest, along with his or her other monthly expenses, within 30 days? Under the old system, regulated unevenly by states, lenders gave what they labeled as short-term loans to help borrowers get by until their next payday or the one after that. But borrowers could roll one loan into a new one, and another and another, if repayment was a problem. That means interest on the old loans was rolled into the subsequent loans, creating the equivalent of 300 percent-plus annual interest rates for some borrowers. This is why Cordray labeled the loans "debt traps." The best way to hit Trump hard for his assaults on consumers is to help a real Populist l[...]



TX-Sen: Sarah Huckabee Sanders Gets OWNED By Beto O'Rourke (D) Over Idiotic Border Wall Remarks

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 07:57:02 +0000

BOOM! xWalls have nothing to do with it. We’ve been ranked 1st, 2nd or 3rd safest city for last 20 years, including before any wall. In addition to great law enforcement, our safety is connected to the fact that we are a city of immigrants. We treat eachother with respect & dignity. https://t.co/VS6XQyEEFs— Beto O'Rourke (@BetoORourke) January 16, 2018   Monday evening, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders shared a pro-border wall opinion piece on Twitter and this comment: "Ask El Paso, Texas (now one of America's safest cities) across the border from Juarez, Mexico (one of the world's most dangerous) if a wall works."   El Paso replied.   "Walls have nothing to do with it," El Paso Congressman Beto O'Rourke tweeted back, less than an hour after Sanders' message. "We’ve been ranked 1st, 2nd or 3rd safest city for last 20 years, including before any wall. In addition to great law enforcement, our safety is connected to the fact that we are a city of immigrants. We treat each other with respect & dignity."   El Paso native O'Rourke, the Democrat running against Senator Ted Cruz in 2018's Senate race, has often credited the strong relationship between El Paso and Juárez's law enforcement agencies for keeping the multi-state community safe.  Sanders may have been referencing the Juárez of 2010 in her tweet. That's when the city's cartel-related violence reached jaw-dropping heights with 3,057 murders in one year. Five years later, that number had dropped to 312, making the Mexico city safer than Baltimore or New Orleans. Hell, even Pope Francis believed it was safe enough to visit in 2016. In 2011, Juarez was ranked the second most dangerous city in the world by a Mexican criminal justice think tank. In 2017, it had dropped to 37th.  Gotta love this guy. Let’s help him unseat U.S. Senator Ted “Shitkicker” Cruz (R. TX) this year. Click here to donate and get involved with Beto’s campaign. [...]



NV & AZ-Sen: Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D) Wants To Get More Women Elected To The Senate

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 07:34:28 +0000

Received this e-mail today from U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D. NV) in support of Reps. Jacky Rosen (D. NV) and Kyrsten Sinema’s (D. AZ) U.S. Senate campaigns:   We're just days away from the anniversary of the Women's March, marking one year of powerful resistance led by women across our country. There's no denying it: If we're going to build on this progress, we need to elect more women. And right now, two amazing women are running to join me in the Senate – Reps. Jacky Rosen from Nevada and Kyrsten Sinema from Arizona. Their two races could give Democrats the Senate majority, so we set a goal to raise $25,000 to support strong Democratic women – but we're falling way short. Can I count on you to step up and give their teams the resources to win? Click here to give $5 or more before the deadline – we are running out of time – to elect Jacky Rosen and Kyrsten Sinema and help Democrats take back the Senate this November! It's already clear that Jacky and Kyrsten have tough races ahead: A Mitch McConnell-backed group is already spending big to defeat Jacky, and just last week, Joe Arpaio, the bigoted former sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona, announced he will be running against Kyrsten. I'm so grateful for all who stood up to Donald Trump's anti-women agenda in 2017, and I know we can muster that same energy and support to help elect Jacky and Kyrsten – and take back the Senate, too. But they need your help now to win. Will you donate $5 right now to help take back the Senate by electing strong women like Jacky and Kyrsten? ¡La lucha sigue! The fight continues! Catherine Click here to donate to Rosen and Sinema’s campaigns. [...]



CA-Gov: Gavin Newsom (D) Mounts Pressure On Congress To Protect DREAMers

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 07:13:43 +0000

Received this e-mail today from Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom’s (D. CA) gubernatorial campaign:

Trump's xenophobia knows no bounds. He's ordering ICE to raid Northern California to enforce his bigoted immigration policy. He's holding hundreds of thousands of young people's futures hostage so he can fund a wall that will cost tax payers billions and do nothing. And Washington Republicans are enabling all of it. We've got to stop this and make DACA permanent. Now.

DREAMers are not un-American or bad people – and they're not from "sh*thole countries." They're good people with spotless records. America is their home. But Congress only has days left to save the program that lets these young immigrants stay here, and they're not moving fast enough.

In California, we know diversity is our strength. So we've got to send our message loud and clear to Washington.

But we're running out of time – will you stand with me right now to demand the GOP stop enabling Trump's racism and protect DREAMers?

Thanks – let's get this done,

Gavin

Click here to add your name.




Dems Lend Trump a Helping Hand on Warrantless Surveillance of Americans: 'BradCast' 1/17/2018

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 02:22:14 +0000

Guest: Elizabeth Goitein of Brennan Center; Also: Dems flip a GOP seat in WI; Sex scandals go overlooked; Mass resignation at Nat'l Park Service... On today's BradCast: Donald Trump and his Great American Shitshow continues today, though he has now received a very helpful hand from Congressional Democrats, for reasons that may beggar the imagination. [Audio link to show is posted below.] First up today, a quick word on the allegations regarding $130k in hush money said, by the Wall Street Journal, to have been paid by Donald Trump to a porn star just before the 2016 election, reportedly to hide a sexual liaison during his marriage with the now-First Lady, and on the sordid sex and blackmail scandal now roiling Missouri's new "family values" Republican governor, Eric Greitens. In normal times, of course, both stories would be huge news everywhere and we'd be discussing impeachment and/or resignation of both men. These days, however, each scandal is barely breaking the national news radar. Then, more encouraging election news for Democrats this week in Tuesday's special elections around the country, with Dems flipping another long-held Republican seat in a deeply "red' area, this time in the Wisconsin State Senate. The results seem to be freaking out the state's controversial GOP Governor Scott Walker in advance of his own re-election contest later this year and signals a possible Dem takeover of the state Senate in advance of 2020 redistricting! Next, Congress is on the verge of reauthorizing a warrantless mass surveillance program that civil libertarians on the right and left have long opposed and characterize as a blatant violation of the U.S. Constitution's 4th Amendment privacy protections against unwarranted search and seizure.  Last week, after Trump made it clear he had no idea what Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act actually was -- despite his administrations' long time lobbying of Congress to reauthorize and, indeed, expand it, it for another 6 years -- Republicans in the U.S. House passed it with the help of several Democrats (including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi). This week in the U.S. Senate, a bi-partisan group lead by Senators Rand Paul (R-KY) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) fell one vote shy of blocking the measure through a filibuster. So it now appears the legislation will clear both houses and sent to Trump for his signature. We're joined today by ELIZABETH GOITEIN, former Dept. of Justice attorney, now co-director of the Liberty and National Security Program at NYU's Brennan Center for Justice, to explain Section 702, the efforts to lobby against its reauthorization, and why it is that many Congressional Democrats are willing to join Republicans in granting the Trump Administration's NSA, DHS, FBI, DOJ, CIA, etc., extraordinary new powers to secretly spy on every American citizen's phone calls and emails without warrant, due diligence or even probable cause. While the legislation was "driven primarily by Republican leadership," she says, there were "enough Tea Party style Republicans who have really rallied in support of greater privacy protections" that so[...]



PA-Gov: Gov. Tom Wolf (D) Makes A Huge Push To Make More Salaried Workers Eligible For Overtime Pay

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 00:24:14 +0000

Hell yeah:

Stymied by Republicans in his effort to pass a law raising the minimum wage, Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf is moving to boost pay in Pennsylvania through another means -- by making hundreds of thousands of additional salaried employees eligible for overtime pay, administration officials said Wednesday.

The proposed regulation extending overtime to more salaried employees would need approval only from a five-member board whose members are appointed by Wolf, two top Republican lawmakers and two top Democratic lawmakers, giving it a 3-2 Democratic majority.

The approval process could take more than a year, and raising the overtime threshold would strengthen the middle class, boost the economy and help make wages fairer, administration officials said.

"It's simple. If you work overtime, then you should get paid fairly for it," Wolf said in a statement. "This important step will put more money into the pockets of hardworking people and will help expand the middle class in Pennsylvania."

But it is likely to draw fire from business owners, who cheered when federal courts blocked a similar move by former President Barack Obama. Worker-advocacy groups say that some employees often put in far more than 40 hours a week and end up making less than the minimum wage.

California, New York and a handful of other states with higher minimum wages require overtime pay for salaried workers above the federal baseline, management consultants say.

Wolf's administration said the regulation would phase in the increase over three years and eventually cover 460,000 more salaried workers. It would require that salaried workers earning up to almost $48,000 a year in 2022, or about $920 a week, get time-and-a-half pay for any time they work over 40 hours in a week. In 2020, the threshold would rise to $31,720 annually, or $610 per week, and in 2021 to nearly $40,000, or $766 per week.

Pennsylvania's current threshold is set at the federal baseline of $23,660, or $455 per week, which took effect in 2004.

Let’s say thank you to Governor Wolf by letting him know we have his back this year for re-election. Click here to donate and get involved with Wolf’s re-election campaign.




NV-Sen: Harry Reid (D) Won't Rest Until He Gets Democrats Their Senate Majority

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 23:56:18 +0000

Received this e-mail today from former U.S. Senate Majority and Minority Leader Harry Reid (D. NV) in support of Rep. Jacky Rosen’s (D. NV) U.S. Senate campaign: Here's the truth: Every single vote in the Senate matters. And right now, the GOP is hell-bent on pushing forward its disastrous agenda – attempting to cause millions to lose health insurance and forcing through a tax plan that benefits the ultra-wealthy and corporations. We have to stop them, and The Washington Post says we can do it – by winning in Nevada and taking back the Senate for Democrats. That's why I'm emailing: Jacky Rosen is in a dead heat for Nevada's Senate seat, so we've got to raise her $10,000 by midnight towards her end of year goal. But with just hours to go, she's still falling short. So I'm reaching out personally: Will you donate right now to help Jacky flip Nevada's must-win Senate seat? Give $5 or more to help Democrats win in Nevada and take back our Senate majority. Throughout my career in the Senate, nothing we accomplished was ever easy. We had to fight hard to carry out our vision for a future where every American could get health insurance, regardless of preexisting conditions. Jacky's got the passion and persistence to roll up her sleeves and get to work from day one. So with less than a year until Election Day, we've got to make sure she has the resources she needs in this must-win race. I know that Mitch McConnell and far-right Super PACs will be doing everything they can to try to stop us – but with help from grassroots supporters like you, Democrats can win in Nevada and take back the Senate in 2018! Will you chip in now to help us win in Nevada and take back the Senate for Democrats? Thank you, Harry Reid Click here to donate to Rosen’s campaign. [...]



MN-Gov: Sign Up To Caucus For The Walz/Flanagan DFL Ticket On February 6th

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 23:40:05 +0000

Received this e-mail today from Rep. Tim Walz’s (D. MN) gubernatorial campaign:

Friend —

This is it. We’re only weeks away from caucuses -- the first real test of our campaign.

We’ve been traveling the state for months, and meeting with voters in living rooms and coffee shops, in breweries and labor halls.

Our team has been working nonstop and we’ve organized our supporters throughout the state.

Now, we need your help. Will you sign up to caucus for Tim and Peggy on February 6th? Click here >»

Tim and Peggy’s campaign is about One Minnesota. It’s a Minnesota with fair wages, fully funded public schools, and affordable healthcare. They believe that folks who are most impacted by public policy decisions should have a seat at the table. They believe in a Minnesota where we protect our environment, invest in renewable energy and jobs, and maintain our roads, bridges, and transit across the state. If you share in this vision for One Minnesota, we need you to show up on February 6th. Committing to caucus for Tim and Peggy is the biggest thing you can do to help.

The results of caucuses will determine how many Walz-Flanagan supporters we’re able to send to the state convention. We need our team out in full force on Tuesday, February 6th.

Are you unsure of the process or have you never caucused before? That’s okay. Our team of organizers and volunteer organizing unit captains will follow up with you.

Click here to commit to caucus for Tim and Peggy >»

We’re building the greatest grassroots campaign for Governor in Minnesota history, and you’re a key part of it.

-- Team Walz

Click here to sign up.




White House stupidity killed the DACA deal, now they're trying to hang a shutdown on Democrats

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 20:54:30 +0000

Anti-immigrant White House aides John Kelly and Stephen Miller tag teamed an effort last week to kill a bipartisan DACA deal, worked out in the Senate, that would have provided a fix for Dreamers and added some of the border security Donald Trump has been clamoring for, including $1.6 billion in funding for Trump's precious border wall. It was the essence of compromise and Trump spitefully shot it down after being coached by his nativist aides. Even a Republican senator—Lindsey Graham—was perfectly clear about who killed the DACA deal. "I don't think the president was well served by his staff," Graham told reporters Tuesday. "I think somebody on his staff gave him really bad advice between 10:00 to 12:00 on Thursday," he said of Trump's 180 on the deal between his morning phone call with Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and the early afternoon meeting at the White House. Graham may have given Trump an out by blaming his staff, but his general target was perfectly accurate: the White House. Apparently by Thursday, Trump had already forgotten his pledge from two days earlier during the televised immigration meeting. "You guys are going to have to come up with a solution [for DACA], and I'm going to sign that solution," Trump told lawmakers.  Despite that promise, the White House spiked the deal and now White House aides are pointing the finger at Democrats for the bind they are in in trying to avert a government shutdown. Asked Wednesday if the buck would stop at Trump if a shutdown ensues, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders responded: "I'm not sure how it would. [...] If one happens," she insisted, "I think you only have one place to look and that's to the Democrats." Just to be perfectly clear here, Republicans own the federal government right now. It's incumbent on them to make deals that can get enough votes to keep the government funded in both the House and the Senate. If they can't do that with Republican votes alone, then they must find compromises that bring some Democratic votes along too. That's one of the reasons they're suddenly interested in re-upping the Children Health Insurance Program for some 9 million kids that they've let languish for months on end. Yes, Republican are using the health of American kids as a bargaining chip. In essence, they're pitting poor kids against immigrant kids and daring Democrats to make the choice. Still, pathetic Paul Ryan may not get the 218 GOP votes for a funding deal he's cobbling together in the House. And even if he does get enough GOP support in the lower chamber, he might not include enough policy compromises to entice Senate Democrats to vote for it.  But bottom line, this entire debacle is the fault of Donald Trump and the nativist aides who steered him away from a deal that would have partially funded his wall. Democrats have insisted for months that in order for them to support a government funding package full of GOP goodies, it would have to include a fix for some 800,000 Dreamers Trump hung out to dry[...]



AZ-Sen: Kyrsten Sinema (D) Keeps Up The Fight To Fully Restore Funding For CHIP

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 19:31:40 +0000

Received this e-mail today from Rep. Kyrsten Sinema’s (D. AZ) U.S. Senate campaign:

It’s been more than 100 days since Congress allowed funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to expire, putting 9 million kids at risk of losing their health care coverage.
 

These kids count on CHIP for preventive care, medicine when they’re sick, and treatment for life-threatening conditions.
 

We can’t just cut off this essential lifeline, leaving low-income families to worry about how they’ll give their children the medical services they desperately need.

Please join me in calling on lawmakers to come up with a bipartisan solution to this serious problem. It’s unacceptable for Congress to put the health of our kids in jeopardy.

If we can give massive tax breaks to wealthy individuals and corporations, then surely we can find the time and funding to provide kids with critical health care.

Members of Congress need to get their priorities straight, and they need to do it as soon as possible, to ensure these kids have access to the coverage they count on.

We must unite and stand up for kids right now. Add your name to our petition and demand that Congress fully fund this popular, effective program that saves millions of lives every day.

Thanks,
 

Kyrsten

Click here to add your name.




Out-to-lunch media thinks Democrats magically just retook Congress and can now shut down government

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 19:33:23 +0000

According to known liar Donald Trump, Democrats would be responsible for a government shutdown if they didn’t allow Republicans to take the hostage of their choice. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, enthusiastic spokesperson for known liar Donald Trump, is pushing her boss’s framing. Wouldn’t it be nice if the media didn’t do the same thing? What’s particularly frustrating is that the media goes along with Trump’s framing in headlines and ledes while acknowledging elsewhere that this is on Republicans.

Bloomberg is among the outlets crediting Republicans with efforts to avert a shutdown, “without Democratic support,” as the headline puts it even as the article calls the current Republican plan to include children’s health funding while excluding Dreamers “election-year brinkmanship by [Republican House Speaker Paul] Ryan and his leadership team.”

According to the Boston Globe, “Democrats are seriously contemplating a government shutdown for the first time since Republicans won back Washington in last year’s elections.” But the Globe knows better, with an editorial headlined “Only the GOP can prevent a government shutdown” and arguing:

The real problem seems to be that GOP factions — deficit hawks, military hawks, Tea Party zealots, pro- and anti-immigrant legislators, President Trump’s various personalities — can’t agree on a deal among themselves. The president appeared to endorse a plan to include immigration measures in the bill last week but then reversed himself on Thursday.

Democrats and Republicans both say they want to keep the government open. But only the GOP has the power to do so.

And yet the Trumpian headlines pile up. You know better, guys. So how about doing better?




21 states will sue the FCC to restore net neutrality rules

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 18:48:36 +0000

Campaign Action The opposition to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai's net neutrality repeal has galvanized, and galvanized quickly. In a matter of a month's time (including the holiday week) 50 senators have joined together to force an upcoming vote to overturn the repeal, which is lightning speed for senators. Additionally, 21 states and the District of Columbia have joined in a lawsuit to block the FCC's new rule. The states suing the FCC are New York, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington. That's every US state with a Democratic attorney general. Republican state attorneys general did not join the petition. "The petition is the first step by states to attempt to block the FCC's decision, and it will allow the attorneys general to move forward with the appeal in the future," said an announcement from Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson. […] "Allowing powerful special interests to act as the Internet's gatekeepers harms consumers, innovation, and small businesses," Ferguson said. "We believe the FCC acted unlawfully when it gutted net neutrality, and I look forward to holding the FCC accountable to the rule of law." The suit is being led by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. Public Knowledge and New America's Open Technology Institute, advocacy groups on net neutrality, have also filed petitions. These filings are "protective petition for review," basically a notice to the courts that the states will sue as soon as the 10-day window for filing suits is open, ensuring them the right to sue. Their petition to the court says that the FCC's net neutrality repeal "is arbitrary, capricious, and an abuse of discretion within the meaning of the Administrative Procedure Act; violates federal law, including, but not limited to, the Constitution, the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and FCC regulations promulgated thereunder; conflicts with the notice-and‐comment rule-making requirements of 5 U.S.C. § 553; and is otherwise contrary to law." Beyond this, California, Nebraska, and Washington lawmakers have introduced state legislation to enact open internet protections at the state level.  This. Fight. Is. On. Trump's FCC and Big Cable are trying to destroy net neutrality—but we can still stop them. Tell Congress to oppose Trump FCC's plan to destroy net neutrality and the open internet. [...]



VIDEO - NJ04 DEBATE: WITH DEMOCRATS LIKE THIS, WHO NEEDS REPUBLICANS?

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 19:25:23 +0000

My name is Jim Keady and I am running for Congress in New Jersey’s #FightingFourth district. On Monday night, in a debate with my fellow NJ-04 Congressional candidates, I made it clear where I stand - with the working people of NJ04, NOT with Wall Street. During the debate, one of my primary opponents launched an impassioned defense of Republican collaborators, and declared “Wall Street’s not the enemy.” With Democrats like this, who needs Republicans? Because of the recklessness of the big banks and the failure of the ratings agencies, the entire global economy almost collapsed in 2008. In all, Americans lost $19.2 trillion dollars in household wealth through the crisis and by 2010, there were more than 46.2 million people in poverty, the largest number of Americans in poverty in 52 years of this data being published. It is clear now more than ever, that we can’t afford to send any more Wall Street supporters to Congress — we already have one here in NJ04 in Republican Chris Smith. You can watch the “Wall Street’s not the enemy,” comment and my response to it below.   x x YouTube Video Whether it is living with sweatshop laborers in Indonesia or standing with striking CWA and IBEW workers in NJ-04, I know the harm that Wall Street can do to working people — and I will boldly stand up and advocate for them both at the grassroots and from the floor of the United States House of Representatives. When I heard my Democratic opponent state that “Wall Street’s not the enemy,” I felt compelled to respond: “Tell the millions of families who lost their homes in 2008; the people who lost their pensions and 401(k)s, and the people who lost millions of jobs that Wall Street is not the enemy.” Watch it above. I won this round in the primary fight — but there’s more to come, and Wall Street will be watching. If you would like to join the #Keady4Congress campaign please visit www.jimkeady.com. If you are ready to donate now to help us fight back against the Wall Street attacks that are certain to come, please CLICK HERE. I look forward to hearing your feedback. Peace, Jim Keady Candidate, United States House of Representatives, NJ04 #Keady4Congress www.jimkeady.com [...]



PA-18: We Won A Special Election In Wisconsin In Trump Territory, Let's Do It Again In Pennsylvania

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 16:40:26 +0000

Yesterday was a great day in Wisconsin where Democrats won a special election for a State Senate seat that was supposed to be a reliable Trump territory for Republicans to hold the seat. But Trump fatigue is setting in around the country and that has Republicans terrified. Need proof? Look no further than the upcoming special congressional election in March in Pennsylvania: National attention is increasingly turning to the special election to replace former U.S. Rep. Tim Murphy, and the contest is poised to become the center of the political world Thursday, when President Donald Trump is expected to appear in Corapolis, in Pennsylvania’s 18th Congressional District, with Republican candidate Rick Saccone. A five-term representative in the Pennsylvania House, Saccone will compete against Democrat and former federal prosecutor, Conor Lamb, in the March 13 special election. The election was prompted in October, when Murphy resigned amid allegations that he had asked a woman with whom he’d been having an affair to get an abortion. The president’s visit is just one of a series of moves by national Republican groups to rally support for Saccone and reflects the importance of the race. “It’s one of those races that has enormous implications nationally, in the sense that there’s a feeling of a possible Democratic wave building in 2018,” said Christopher Borick, who directs the Institute of Public Opinion at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pa. “If a seat like this, where the president won by 20 points in 2016 was to somehow flip to the Democrats,” Borick continued, “it would send repercussions all throughout the political world and really put the Republican Party into panic mode." And Democrats have a strong candidate in Marine veteran and former assistant U.S. attorney, Conor Lamb (D. PA-18): Buoyed by a sweeping win in Virginia and a shocking Senate upset in conservative Alabama, Democrats feel they can compete everywhere - and see Lamb’s gold-plated resume and moderate policy stances as a strong contrast to Saccone’s hard-edged conservatism. “If the Democrats can pull off a win, it would be a sign of much bigger and better things to come in November - and it would strike fear into Republicans,” said Mike Mikus, a Democratic strategist who lives in the district. In a district where Trump remains popular and Democrats have not even fielded a candidate in the previous two congressional elections, Saccone has tied himself closely to the president. The conservative 59-year-old state legislator has joked he “was Trump before Trump was Trump.” Democrat Lamb, who hails from a prominent Pennsylvania political family, rarely mentions Trump, focusing on economic issues, healthcare and protecting Social Security and Medicare. And Lamb’s campaign is getting some big-time fueling: End Citizens United, wh[...]



Alright! Nancy Pelosi Has Urged All Democrats To Vote Against Short-Term Funding Bill

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 15:43:30 +0000

Awesome news and Rep. John Yarmuth confirms no Dems will vote for it.

If Republicans can’t include immigration or other Dem demands, let Rs shut down the government *they* control. No #DACA. No #CHIP. No Votes.

x

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has urged all Democrats to vote against a short-term government funding measure that doesn't include immigration and other Dem demands. ``No Democrats are going to vote for it,'' says Dem Rep John Yarmuth




Top Comments: The McBride Viaduct Edition

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 03:00:06 +0000

The City of Erie is facing a particularly contentious issue right now that in some senses demonstrates some of the problems in the Democratic Party.  It involves an urban renewal project and the concerns of black citizens who have been ignored for many years by a city government dominated by Democrats. The McBride Viaduct is a bridge built in the 1930s that crosses over a railroad track.  It was constructed because a significant number of people were killed in railroad accidents crossing the railroad tracks at that time.  Currently, a significant percentage of the African American community lives on the east side, while their children attend school just over the viaduct.  Due to structural issues, the bridge was closed to traffic in 2010, but it has been used nonetheless by pedestrians and cyclists since then.  Indeed, the viaduct is used by the children going to and from school, where they can walk on streets where there isn’t much traffic. The City is determined to tear the viaduct down.  The children would be redirected to the bridge on the Bayfront Connector, a high-traffic, fairly high-speed highway where children have been injured and killed.  Members of the African American community have been fighting for a decade to keep the viaduct as it is, so that their children will continue to have a safe walking route between their homes and school.  There have been numerous demonstrations and marches with the intention of drawing attention to saving the viaduct. Last November, the voters of Erie elected Democrat Joe Schember as its mayor.  On the whole, he’s pretty good in his politics.  He is supporting the proposal to decriminalize cannabis, for example.  But he is bound and determined to demolish the McBride Viaduct. On top of this, a study released last year concluded that, on the basis of social and economic data, the worst city for black people to live in in the entire USA is Erie, Pennsylvania. No major metropolitan area has greater racial inequalities across major social and economic outcome measures than Erie, Pennsylvania.  An astounding 47 % of the black populations lives at or below the poverty line, twice the already alarming national poverty rate for black Americans of 23.9 %, and more than four times the white poverty rate in Erie of 11.9 %.  The stark differences along racial lines in the city are also well reflected by the deep gap in job prospects between white and black residents. Erie’s overall unemployment rate of 5.8 % is identical to the national rate.  However, just 4.0 % of the white labor force is unemployed, while 25 % of the black labor force is. The city government was alarmed when this report was released, and is making plans to address these problems.  Schember was quoted as being “embarrassed and appalled.” Addressing th[...]



The Consequences of Our Puerto Rico Crisis

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 13:17:46 +0000

Reprinted with permission (www.jimwalzforcongress.com) The Trump Administration’s apathy toward Puerto Rico has put the entire county in jeopardy and the results have come home to Illinois. One of the components for treatment requires  I.V. bags which are now in critical shortage. Just days ago, a 4-year-old in our community died from complications relating to the flu. The Center for Disease Control warns it this flu season will get worse. This puts put us all at risk. Numerous conditions are treated with I.V.  bag delivered medications.  Boston, nurses had to treat a patient with Gatorade and a pump through a stomach tube. Another hospital reported that nursing staff was on 24-hour vigil with syringe injections to keep a newborn stable because I.V. bags were not available. When a major employer in Round Lake and Deerfield faces income challenges, so do we. Our own Baxter with 48,000 employees is one of the largest manufacturers of these and other medical devices. In Puerto Rico, Baxter employs roughly 10% of the entire population. All three of their facilities on the island were affected by Hurricane Maria and continue to be 116 days later. When a major employer in Round Lake and Deerfield faces income challenges, so do we. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act supported by Congressman Hultgren adds an additional 12.5% tariff on every product imported from Puerto Rico, adding to the cost of goods. Baxter is just one of a few large pharmaceutical companies now struggling with their Puerto Rico operations. This adds to the cost for our hospitals and we are paying for it, some of us with our lives. Where was Hultgren in support of this employer? His failure of leadership and critical lack of foresight shows that Hultgren isn’t standing with us. All decisions have consequences. Reporter David Begnaud has been covering the situation since day one, including the dramatic increase in suicides and murder rate as basic shelter, food, water are still at critical levels in Puerto Rico, and that illness and disease continues to spread. Begnaud wrote on Twitter, “It’s also worth pointing out that the governor was in Florida today rallying displaced Puerto Rican survivors, who are staying in the state … to target Republicans in the 2018 midterm election.” This is happening everywhere. For the over 180,000 Americans in Illinois of Puerto Rican heritage, I extend my deepest apologies for our failure of leadership.  We have work to do.   Fast Facts: The looming budget crisis in Washington that threatens to shut down the government includes an impasse to fund relief efforts for Puerto Rico as well as the CHIP program.  More than 100,000 Puerto Ricans have left for the continental U.S. after the hurricane The suicide rate in PR has jumped 16% with an [...]



Just Where ARE those Democrats, Anyway?

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 14:33:24 +0000

I noticed a diary on the rec list yesterday called “ Where Are the Democrats? Seriously, Where The Hell Are You?” where the author can’t seem to find any Democrats anywhere willing to stand up for what we believe in. Apparently the author only means elected Democrats, as they never mention those of us out here organizing and getting ready for the 2018 elections. Part of the issue, of course, is that Trump and his sycophants manage to suck the air out of the room with each passing day. What has the major story been the last few days on the cable channels? Whether Trump said “shithouse” or “shithole” when referring to majority black countries like Haiti or nations in Africa when talking about immigration.  Apparently the author wants to see the Democrats out in the “media”, but tweets don’t count  (“a tweet is, lets face it, bullshit if it’s not a news item and not sustainable”),  nor do TV appearances (“when I say I don’t see Democrats in the media, I’m not talking about one person here or there, like Durbin or Feinstein, actually doing what the rest should all be doing”).  So after narrowing down media appearances to only what the author deems good enough, an addendum at the end of the diary finally clarifies what the author thinks Democrats should be doing: If all (or, for God’s sake, most) the elected Democrats would stand together, call more press conferences, create more initiatives with clever, catchy, strong names (i.e. “Contract with America”, instead of “A Better Deal”) be more combative on the talk shows, and demand to be heard, rather than being so polite, we’d get more coverage.  So here’s the video of the Senate Democrats having a press conference on 1-9-18 on DACA: x x YouTube Video Did you hear about that in the media?  Here’s a video about a report on Russian interference in the elections Senate Democrats put out the day after Feinstein released the transcript on the Fusion dossier. “Without the president agreeing that this needs to be addressed, this won’t go anywhere.” x x YouTube Video Of course Feinstein got great coverage after the release but that was a whole week ago, and we all know what the news cycle has been like since Trump was elected. In the last week, we have had a false missile attack alert in Hawaii, the conference of Democrats and Republicans with Trump on DACA, the shithouse comment, Trump’s physical, Steve Bannon’s testimony in front of the Intelligence Committee, some porn star who was paid $130,000 to not tell the world about her tryst with Trump, the DHS secretary interviewed by the Judiciary Committee, and the Senate scrambling to come up with a funding bill for the government.  Meanwhile, here are the [...]



MT-Sen: Jon Tester (D) Cracks Down On The ICE For Eavesdropping On Your Cell Phone Calls

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 04:02:07 +0000

Good:

Montana Democratic Senator Jon Tester wants immigration officials to tell Congress when they eavesdrop on cell phone conversations. His proposal is part of the Department of Homeland Security’s 2018 budget, which is still under consideration in Congress.

From the mountains of Afghanistan to the deserts of Iraq, the federal government has been listening in on foreign cell phone conversations for years. But in 2016, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, were caught eavesdropping on calls here in the U.S. They were trying to root out an undocumented immigrant in Detroit.

While they did it with a search warrant approved by a judge, Tester says that is a slippery slope.

“We need to be very careful not to allow for government overreach because I think it can happen very, very quickly.”

So Tester has written up a provision requiring the Department of Homeland Security report when they use devices, called IMSI catchers, to listen in on cell phone conversations.

These IMSI catchers are about the size of a toaster: “and they send out a signal that mimics the signal of a real cell tower.”

Click here to contact Tester’s office for more information.

Senator Tester has always been a leading champion on defending civil liberties and the GOP would love to take him down. Especially Steve Bannon and his chosen candidate, Montana State Auditor Matt Rosendale (R. MT), who is loved by Breitbart. Let’s not let Bannon win this seat. Click here to donate and get involved with Tester’s re-election campaign.