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Profile Information

Name: Chris Bastian
Gender: Male
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Home country: USA
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 72,786

Journal Archives

NYC releases preliminary Ranked Choice Voting (in person votes) results

Round 11:
Adams 51.1% +15,908
Garcia 48.9%

Initial mail-in ballot totals will be added next week.


Arizona ballot audit shows signs of backfiring on GOP


The final report is widely expected to make claims about election fraud, reflecting the politics of Cyber Ninja’s founder — he appeared in a conspiracy theorist’s documentary film rife with falsehoods, according to Arizona press reports.

By 49-46 percent, Arizona voters are opposed to the audit, which puts the result within the poll’s margin of error. But the survey of 600 likely voters found that the intensity of opposition to the audit exceeded the intensity of support, with those strongly opposed to it outnumbering those strongly in favor by 5 percentage points. And while Democrats and Republicans broke along familiar partisan lines, independent voters upon whom the state pivots in close elections opposed the audit by 18 percentage points.

“As bloody red meat for the MAGA Republican base, the audit is manna from heaven, but the problem is that Arizona is not a red state any more. It’s a swing state,” said Fernand Amandi, who conducted the survey. “The audit may be serving two interests: firing up the MAGA base but giving Democrats the opportunity to make the case to Arizona voters to stick with them.”

If a candidate supports the audit, the poll shows, Arizona voters would be less likely to support that politician by a margin of 9 percentage points.

Parler refused Trump demand to ban his critics: book

Source: The Hill

Parler and former President Trump were in talks to get Trump on the platform, but they stalled after Parler refused to ban those who criticized the former president, Michael Wolff’s book about Trump’s last days in office says.

Trump and Parler had been in discussions even before the Capitol riot about the former president joining the platform, with Parler offering Trump 40 percent of the company’s gross revenues to join, according to the book “Landslide: The Final Days of the Trump Presidency,” The Verge reported.

However, Trump reportedly also wanted Parler to be a place where he did not have to deal with his detractors.

“They had floated a proposition that Trump, after he left office, become an active member of Parler, moving much of his social-media activity there from Twitter. In return, Trump would receive 40 percent of Parler’s gross revenues and the service would ban anyone who spoke negatively about him,” said an excerpt from the book published in New York Magazine. “Parler was balking only at this last condition.”

Read more: https://thehill.com/policy/technology/560682-parler-refused-to-ban-trump-critics-to-get-him-to-join-book

Manchin says he's on board with Democratic-only infrastructure bill

Source: The Hill

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) said on Tuesday that he's supportive of going forward with a larger, Democratic-only infrastructure bill, but that it shouldn't be linked to a separate bipartisan framework.

Manchin, during an interview with MSNBC, said that he had been assuming since "day one" that Democrats would have to use reconciliation, a budget process that allows them to bypass a 60-vote legislative filibuster, to pass a larger infrastructure bill because Republicans don't want to make changes to the 2017 tax bill.

“We're going to have to work it through reconciliation, which I’ve agreed that that can be done. I just haven’t agreed on the amount, because I haven’t seen everything that everyone is wanting to put in the bill," Manchin said on MSNBC.

Manchin added that the Senate can "go through the process" on putting together a larger package that includes so-called "human infrastructure" knowing that Democrats will "probably have to go to reconciliation and then do what we can afford to do."

Read more: https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/560686-manchin-says-hes-on-board-with-democratic-only-infrastructure-bill

Queer Valedictorian's silenced LGBTQ identity speech may see federal Civil Rights review


LVOORHEES Eastern Regional High School's 2021 valedictorian was silenced briefly during commencement remarks about mental illness and his own experience as a queer-identifying teen surviving high school.

Now, the Voorhees school district wants a federal agency to review whether it acted improperly in muting Bryce Dershem's microphone and allegedly crumpling the paper copy of his speech on the dias before 450 graduates and their families.

Bryce Dershem's valedictorian speech about his queerness and mental health was cut short by school administrators.
Eastern Regional Camden County High School District Superintendent Robert Cloutier told the Courier Post Monday he has directed school district attorney Anthony Padovani "to contact an appropriate government agency to conduct an independent review."

Padovani said he's filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights in Cherry Hill, requesting the agency investigate whether the school district discriminated against Dershem.

The 2024 Iowa caucus campaign has already begun


WEST DES MOINES, Iowa — Former President Donald Trump would be the overwhelming frontrunner for the Republican Party’s nomination should he wage a 2024 comeback bid. But that’s not stopping his would-be GOP successors from barreling into Iowa.

Only months after Trump’s election defeat, Republicans are laying the groundwork for the all-important, first-in-the-nation presidential caucuses. Potential candidates are hopscotching across the state to fundraise, campaign for midterm hopefuls and appear at traditional party dinners that mark the start of caucus season.

And behind the scenes, Republicans are making overtures to influential activists, meeting with party leaders and hiring operatives with deep experience in Iowa, which is still expected to be the first 2024 contest for Republicans — even though Democrats are grappling with whether to change their nominating calendar.

The burst of early activity — which is set to accelerate over the summer months — illustrates how Republicans are maneuvering with an eye toward succeeding Trump. A Trump bid would likely extinguish their hopes of becoming the party’s nominee, and at least one candidate has said they won't run if if Trump does. But would-be contenders are wasting no time preparing for the possibility of an open nominating contest.

The Iowa Caucus for the GOP will be the first in the nation event again, because the State Government won't change the date. The New Hampshire Primary will be the second event because...they'll block anyone besides Iowa going before them.

Portland, Seattle and Canada break all-time records again amid historic heat wave

Source: Washington Post

The most severe heat wave in the history of the Pacific Northwest is near its climax. The National Weather Service had predicted it would be “historic, dangerous, prolonged and unprecedented,” and it is living up to its billing as it rewrites the record books.

On Monday, Portland, Ore., soared to at least 115 degrees, the highest temperature in more than 80 years of record-keeping. It marked the third straight day the city had climbed to an all-time high. On Sunday, it hit 112 Sunday after reaching 108 Saturday, both of which broke the previous all-time record of 107.

Seattle reached 108 degrees Monday evening, surpassing the all-time record of 104 degrees set Sunday (which topped the previous mark of 103).

Medford, Ore., tied its all-time record Monday of 115 degrees. So did Spokane, which soared to 108.

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2021/06/27/heat-records-pacific-northwest/

And...that's a wrap

Other than some future part-time advisory work, my 36 year career in transportation planning is done.

"BIDEN YOU COWARD" is always a great way to make political progress.....


Anti-Vaxxers Protest As Bruce Springsteen Makes Triumphant Return To Broadway

Source: Gothamist

Bruce Springsteen made his triumphant return to Broadway on Saturday, as Springsteen On Broadway became the first show to reopen on The Great White Way since the start of the pandemic in March 2020, when theaters went dark.

Many fans said they were so excited to see their first live music performances in over 15 months, that they bought tickets to multiple performances of the show this summer.


Of course, having gone through a pandemic of this magnitude, there is a new normal to get used to. And on Saturday, that came in the form of a group of anti-vaccination protesters raging against the St. James Theatre's policy requiring that everyone has to show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination to attend.

That included people holding incendiary signs ("Bruce Springsteen is for segregation on Broadway", chanting "shame on Bruce," and a hilariously bad and shambolic attempt at singing "Born Not To Vaccinate" in the style of "Born In The U.S.A."

Read more: https://gothamist.com/arts-entertainment/photos-videos-anti-vaxxers-protest-bruce-springsteen-makes-triumphant-return-broadway

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