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The Left Column
(TPM) The polls, released Wednesday, found Sen. Mark Pryor (D-AR) leading Rep. Tom Cotton (R-AR) 46 percent to 36 percent. In Kentucky, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) just barely leads Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes (D) 44 percent to 43 percent, the poll found.
Meanwhile, in North Carolina Sen. Kay Hagan (D-NC) is neck-and-neck with House Speaker Thom Tillis (R-NC) in a hypothetical matchup with Hagan getting 42 percent while Tillis gets 40 percent.
(Politico) Last August, as conservatives barnstormed the country seeking to build support for a cockamamie plan to shut down the U.S. federal government unless Congress voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act, Ted Cruz, the Texas Republican senator, said something surprisingly prescient about the president’s signature health-care law.
“President Obama wants to get as many Americans addicted to the subsidies because he knows that in modern times, no major entitlement has ever been implemented and then unwound,” he said. The worry, according to Cruz, was that once the ACA went into effect, we’d all be “addicted to the sugar.” Then, it would be too late to roll it back.
(HuffPo) "We need to be as elected officials held to a higher standard," said Florida state Rep. Dane Eagle (R-Cape Coral) last month after sponsoring a bill that would require legislators to submit to drug testing.
Just before 2 a.m. Monday morning, Eagle was arrested in Tallahassee on suspicion of DUI. Police first spotted him pulling out of a Taco Bell in his black SUV before he narrowly avoided hitting a median, then stopped in an intersection, veered into a curb and ran a traffic light, according to arrest documents.
(NYT) The American middle class, long the most affluent in the world, has lost that distinction.
While the wealthiest Americans are outpacing many of their global peers, a New York Times analysis shows that across the lower- and middle-income tiers, citizens of other advanced countries have received considerably larger raises over the last three decades.
After-tax middle-class incomes in Canada — substantially behind in 2000 — now appear to be higher than in the United States. The poor in much of Europe earn more than poor Americans.
(NY Daily News) There is such a thing as a free lunch, if the City Council has its way. The Council’s proposed city budget, to be unveiled Wednesday, will include a universal school lunch program for all kids, regardless of how much money their families make.
(TPM) A significant portion of Justice Sonia Sotomayor's scathing dissent in the Supreme Court's decision upholding Michigan's affirmative action ban was dedicated to taking on Chief Justice John Roberts' views on race in America.
"In my colleagues' view, examining the racial impact of legislation only perpetuates racial discrimination. This refusal to accept the stark reality that race matters is regrettable. The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to speak openly and candidly on the subject of race, and to apply the Constitution with eyes open to the unfortunate effects of centuries of racial discrimination. As members of the judiciary tasked with intervening to carry out the guarantee of equal protection, we ought not sit back and wish away, rather than confront, the racial inequality that exists in our society. It is this view that works harm, by perpetuating the facile notion that what makes race matter is acknowledging the simple truth that race does matter."
Study: American public has ‘virtually no influence’ over politics in face of wealthy interest groups
(Al Jazeera America) It’s not just your imagination: The influence of money in politics has indeed drowned out the voices of American voters, a new analysis shows, with runaway corporate lobbying and a lack of campaign finance reform to blame for giving much more political weight to the wealthy.
Researchers at Princeton University and Northwestern University compared the public’s influence on 1,779 policy issues between 1981 and 2002, finding that more often than not, the interests of wealthy groups and individuals won out over the demands of the general public. For instance, when 80 percent of the public asked for a change of some sort, they got their way only about 43 percent of the time.
(Mother Jones) Facing his toughest reelection battle in years against a well-known and well-financed female opponent, Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) recently boasted that he led the Senate in ousting a GOP colleague accused of sexual harassment in 1995. But news reports from that time show that late in the investigation, McConnell tried to stall the probe against his fellow Republican, Sen. Bob Packwood (R-Ore.). He derided efforts by Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) to hold public hearings on Packwood as "frolic and detour"—after the Senate ethics committee had substantiated nearly two-dozen claims of sexual harassment leveled against Packwood by female lobbyists and former staffers.
(Philly Mag) Who knows if it’s because of Bridgegate, or because of conservatives’ underlying suspicion of him, but Chris Christie’s New Hampshire support in the 2016 presidential election has declined precipitously. Power Line, a conservative blog, reports on the result of a new poll of Granite State Republican primary voters.
For Christie, there is very little good news in this poll. Sure, he places fourth with 12 percent support. But last July, the Granite State poll had him in the lead at 21 percent.
(Politicus USA) David Gregory repeatedly told Rep. Wasserman Schultz that he wasn’t interested in facts, or the merits as he called them. Gregory made it clear that he was only interested in pushing the Republican fantasy that Democrats are doomed because of Obamacare.
Wasserman-Schultz put him in his place by explaining reality. Millions of people do understand the ACA, because they now have health insurance, or they aren’t getting dropped because they have a preexisting condition. As far as the 2014 electoral map is concerned, Democratic Senate incumbents are leading in places like Arkansas and Louisiana, and they could easily pick up two more seats in Kentucky and Georgia.
Sunflowers ... The DU Lounge : By Tuesday Afternoon
Want to see some sound? Science : By libodem
Graphene 'wonder material' made with kitchen blender Science : By dipsydoodle
I just got the nicest letter from someone who read 'Pitch'... LGBT : By WillParkinson
I love grammar! The DU Lounge : By ashling
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Latest Breaking News
43 min ago - TOKYO (AP) — Warning Russia that new economic sanctions are "teed up," President Barack Obama accused Moscow of failing to live up to an agreement last week to ease tensions in eastern Ukraine. Still, he cautioned that the United States needs to sec ... (Associated Press)
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2 hrs ago - PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon county commission has ordered an incinerator to stop accepting boxed medical waste to generate electricity after learning the waste it's been burning may include tissue from aborted fetuses from British Columbia. Sam ... (AP)
3 hrs ago - “I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” he said. Mr. Bundy recalled driving past a public-housing project in North Las Vegas, “and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids — and ... (NY Times)
4 hrs ago - BEIRUT — Syrian regime tanks and artillery shelled rebel positions Thursday in the central old city district of Homs, according to rebels and anti-government activists, who said they believe that the last rebel bastion will be overwhelmed by governme ... (McClatchyDC)
5 hrs ago - WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration will propose sweeping new rules on Thursday that for the first time would extend its regulatory authority from cigarettes to electronic cigarettes, popular nicotine delivery devices that have grown into a ... (New York Times)
5 hrs ago - BERKELEY -- The recent legislative effort to restore affirmative action in public university admissions "should've been called the 'There are too many Asians at Berkeley' bill," Republican candidate for governor Neel Kashkari told several hundred Cal ... (Oakland Tribune)
6 hrs ago - <blockquote>CNN) -- At least 40 U.S. veterans died waiting for appointments at the Phoenix Veterans Affairs Health Care system, many of whom were placed on a secret waiting list. The secret list was part of an elaborate scheme designed by Veter ... (CNN)
6 hrs ago - San Francisco (AFP) - Apple on Wednesday courted investors with stock split plans as hot iPhone sales pushed up profits while underscoring pressure for the company to unveil "the next big thing." Apple shares jumped more than seven percent to $566.1 ... (AFP)
6 hrs ago - ... Nearly 39 years after the former Manson “family” member leveled a Colt .45-caliber pistol at President Gerald R. Ford in Sacramento’s Capitol Park, one of the last and most intriguing pieces of evidence from the case has been made available to th ... (Sacramento Bee)
7 hrs ago - Sixteen persons, including journalists, have been kidnapped over the past week in the eastern Ukrainian cities of Sloviansk and Horlivka, according to Kyiv Post reporting and that of Donetsk-based news website Novosti Donbassa. Some have been release ... (Kyiv Post)
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10 hrs ago - Five senior Arizona child welfare employees were fired Wednesday for orchestrating a plan that led to more than 6,500 Arizona child abuse and neglect cases being closed without investigations, officials said. The firings were the first major pers ... (ABC News)
11 hrs ago - It’s approaching two years since Penn State, in the aftermath of the Jerry Sandusky scandal, took down the Joe Paterno statue and carted the likeness of the legendary football coach off into nearby Beaver Stadium. The university’s been tight lipped ... (Centre Daily Times)
11 hrs ago - The Federal Communications Commission will propose new rules that allow Internet service providers to offer a faster lane through which to send video and other content to consumers, as long as a content company is willing to pay for it, according to ... (nyt)
12 hrs ago - SLOVYANSK, Ukraine — While Russia and the United States traded warnings and accusations over developments Wednesday in Ukraine, the promised Ukrainian military effort to reassert control over the restive eastern part of the country got off to a halti ... (New York Times)
12 hrs ago - San Antonio GI killed in Guatemala exercise By Sig Christenson : April 23, 2014 : Updated: April 23, 2014 2:17pm A soldier from U.S. Army South in San Antonio was killed this week in an incident in Guatemala that left three other GIs injured. Th ... (San Antonio Express News)
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