I am sorry, but, I don't get it. Why would Democrats sit out the special election in FL#13 and not elect Alex Sink? There was only a 39% voter turnout and nearly 9000 voted for the Libertarian candidate. Jolly only won by 2 points. If only 3500 people, Dems or Libertarians, had voted for Sink, she would have beaten Jolly. This is just ridiculous. It is unacceptable! What kind of dummy tries to send a message by voting 3rd party? You might as well fill out your ballot and throw it in the garbage can. The only way we are going to change the direction of the country is to get people to vote the Democratic candidate into office. It really doesn't matter who wins the Presidency in 2016 if we still have a Congress controlled by the GOP and Tea Party. So, please, tell all your friends and relatives to be sure they are registered and have the correct ID's and then vote this year.
I have given a lot of thought of late about what is ailing our dysfunctional political system, and have come to the conclusion that it boils down to one significant thing: Ideology. Read more
Boehner's buddies bucked the Tea Party to lower the insanity and raise the debt ceiling. Could they show the same courage to lift up our nation by raising the minimum wage for millions of workers?
McConnell's crew crammed down their crazies to avoid a destructive, dubious debate over debt. Now can they repel their radical right-wing to renew relief for unemployed Americans?
The Democrats avoided a manufactured meltdown to preserve the country's full faith and credit. In addition to the debt ceiling, it is time to raise our standards for what counts as progress.
Kudos to Congress for not creating a crisis. They raised the ceiling - now raise the floor: our basic quality of life, our safety net minimum our low expectations and baseline belief in democracy.
That would be a success worth toasting.
Meanwhile, toast small victories & share small talk as you enjoy a big night with big ideas at your local progressive social club.
Not snow, nor sleet, nor icy rain shall keep us from our appointed rounds!
Find - or start - a chapter near you.
ATLANTA — With no immediate hope of overturning the U.S. Supreme Court's decision legalizing abortion, Republicans around the country are increasingly pushing legislation to restrict the procedure, and Democrats say they'll make the GOP pay in coming elections.
Politics today is all about messaging. So I took a quick look at the Twitter account for Democratic and Republican leaders in the House and Senate. What I found will not surprise you. Republicans are focused on the ACA rollout and the report that people are being drop from their insufficient healthcare plans. While Democrats are focused on everything from Women's Rights to debt reduction.
While the President mentions healthcare in his tweet today. He also mention's how low the debt is currently vs. 2009. The Democrats are currently searching for a winning message, while the Republicans think they have found one.
It has become apparent that House Speaker John Boehner has lost control of House Republicans. So the question becomes what should he do? From my estimation the speaker has two options. One, he can continue to be rebuffed by his own party for another year until he loses his speakership in 2014.
Or he can take option two and create an alliance with a few republicans (20 or so) and all the Democrats to pass a long term debt "fix" bill that will balance our budget over the next decade. This is assuming he can get a short term debt limit increase passed. I know that's a big assumption. This alliance will give John Boehner a place in American political history that will outlast any of his current opponents. Just look at newt Gingrich the "Historian".
Now it is true that both option have a bad immediate outcome for the Speaker. He will no doubt lose his speakership no matter what he does. But option number two leaves him a career bigger then being a contributor to FOX News.
Now that the government shutdown is a reality, I want to take this opportunity to register my disgust at how this played out. I try and take a reasonable approach to the issue of who is responsible for government problems, and have a rather evenhanded focus, but in this, I am rather upset at the Republicans in the House of Representatives. Read more
Dear Gov. McCrory,
Though I’m fortunate enough to hail from Ohio, the greatest state in our union, I still keep abreast of what’s going on in North Carolina—my second, wonderful home state. As a Republican, Duke student and political science major, I was disappointed to listen to the radio interview you gave a couple of weeks ago, during which you expressed an interest in defunding certain areas of study at North Carolina public universities. The sound bite the media grappled on to was your declaration, “If you want to take gender studies that’s fine. Go to a private school, and take it.”
I listened to the interview in its entirety, rather than just picking and choosing the choicest bits. I am guessing (hoping) this comment doesn’t express a malevolent view of the academic field of gender studies. Rather, I think it is a poor phrasing of your larger belief that public tax dollars should only fund areas of study that produce jobs for students. I’d like to respond to this larger sentiment and the potentiality of defunding certain academic disciplines, rather than the specific gender studies statement itself. Read more
Oftentimes I feel as though the views of the Republican Party are not properly characterized in campus discourse. Today I’d like to briefly summarize four oft-ignored perspectives on the Republican economic agenda, which isn’t as scary as it is usually portrayed in campus debate.
First and foremost, the Republican Party is not a party that only cares about rich people. Republicans want everyone to have a good-paying job that provides for his or her family. Many Republicans come from humble beginnings and humble backgrounds. Many were immigrants who came to this country with nothing but a dream. They know what it is to face hard times, and are not callous to the difficult circumstances in which many impoverished people find themselves.
In short, Republicans do not differ with Democrats at all in terms of empathy. Rather, they differ in their beliefs regarding the means by which to help the poorest among us. I think it’s safe to say Republicans have more faith in the power of free markets than the Democratic Party. Republicans would argue that free markets, unencumbered by unnecessary government regulation, allow for the greatest growth in prosperity for all. Read more
My AP English teacher once told me that I would get beaten up at least once in college for telling people I was a Republican. She made the comment in the middle of class, laughing as she said it. I don’t think it was necessarily meant as an insult, but the memory has stuck with me ever since.
It’s a bit funny to think about now. Not only have I never gotten into a brawl surrounding politics (that would be a low point in anyone’s life I think), but a majority of my good friends at Duke University are of the opposite political persuasion.
In fact, I haven’t just peacefully coexisted and debated the other side—I’ve actually experienced it. This past summer I worked for two organizations simultaneously. The first organization was the Romney campaign, where I acted as the student overseeing all of the Young Americans for Romney campus groups in North Carolina. The second organization, Friends of the Earth, I interned with for a short period of time in London. It’s as liberal as the name might lead you to believe. It was quite a dichotomous pairing. Read more
If you read at an average pace, it will take you four minutes to finish this column. By the time you’re done, approximately nine U.S. students will have dropped out of high school. That’s 1.2 million dropouts a year—dropouts who are qualified for only 10 percent of new jobs, are eight times more likely to be incarcerated and are 50 percent less likely to vote. When Texas projects how many prisons it will need 10 years from today, one of the data points it considers is the percentage of literate Texas fourth graders. The correlation is strong—six out of 10 American prison inmates are illiterate.
America’s educational problems permeate all aspects of our society—from economic growth to crime to national security. And that’s not a new, tantalizingly fresh concept I’ve just written. In preparing to write this column, I found so many websites with educational crisis statistics that my Google Chrome froze from an overload of tabs. Read more
Right around 12 pm EST today, Party of One Ted Cruz wrapped up his pointless nonfilibuster so he could appear on the Rush Limbaugh Show.
The right wing talk show host is the poster boy for limp noodles, having been detained for having someone else's name on his Viagra prescription and running loads of ads for pecker pills on his floundering radio program.
But not today.
Limbaugh was audibly aroused as he waited for the Texas senator to join him: Read more
Many commemorated the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington protest, one of the defining moments of the civil rights movement. The hopes, dreams and aspirations of Martin Luther King Jr. and many others striving for equality were celebrated. Some might argue that much progress has been made, and civil rights are no longer a partisan issue. However, this may not be the case. Frank James pointed out that “The parties have seldom seemed so far apart as they did Wednesday, on the 50th anniversary of King's speech and the March on Washington. Not a single Republican elected official spoke at the ‘Let Freedom Ring’ event at the Lincoln Memorial, site of King's 1963 speech, though some were invited.” http://www.npr.org/blogs/itsallpolitics/2013/08/28/216580613/something-w...
This could be due to mere coincidence, yet there is some reason to believe otherwise. Read more
With the talks already ongoing to try and avert a government shutdown in the face of another debt ceiling crisis, I have decided to look at the broader question of whether it is genuinely possible to have an actual dialogue, on any subject, given the current political atmosphere. The first item in this conversation is to determine what dialogue actually is. Despite many different definitions that come to mind, and a lot of searching, I have happened upon a quote that seems to make the most sense. In the book On Heaven and Earth then Jorge Cardinal Bergoglio, now Pope Francis, in his introduction has this to say on the idea of dialogue:
"Dialogue is born of a respectful attitude toward the other person, from a conviction that the other person has something good to say. It supposes that we can make room in our heart for their point of view, their opinion and their proposals. Dialogue entails a warm reception and not a preemptive condemnation. To dialogue, one must know how to lower the defenses, to open the door to one's home and to offer warmth. Read more
I recall vividly in the summer of 1987 when Court of Appeals Judge Robert Bork was before the Senate Judiciary Committee going through the ordeal of a hearing on his nomination to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. I had been studying the history of the Supreme Court for a couple of years at that point, and was very interested in seeing this process play out. By the end of it, I was sorely disappointed, and a little frustrated at the antics of the Senators, both on and off the Committee. Since then, I have been more and more disillusioned about the process of nominating, and confirming, an individual to the Supreme Court. While this disillusionment applies equally well to lower Federal courts, I am focusing my attention on the Supreme Court. Read more