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Gender: Male
Hometown: North Carolina
Member since: Wed Aug 11, 2004, 06:57 PM
Number of posts: 3,813

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I agree, to a certain point and time.

Drunken Irishman, this is a well-reasoned post, and deserves a healthy k&r which I am glad to give. I agree that even beginning a formal impeachment inquiry immediately would be premature for many of the reasons you outline.

However, I have a different take than what you say here:
That's a tight rope to walk. I believe hearings should continue - as we've seen - but if those subpoenaed to testify continue to refuse to, and the White House stonewalls, and Mueller refuses to say anything beyond what's in his report, the optics aren't going to be there for the Democrats and once you go down the path to impeachment, there's no coming back or you've just handed Trump a monumental victory.

I agree that all the disparate Congressional Committee hearings do indeed need to continue. And I will bet good money that any subpoenaed witness that 45 can reach will be pressured to refuse. Barr will continue to obstruct and hide documents. Each such instance can and should build the case for impeachment, and some time in late June or perhaps July, that case will become overwhelming to even the fence-sitters. Such a time frame will also give Democratic Presidential candidates the chance to articulate the need for impeachment on the debate stage. Given the crimes and evidence we already know, if investigations, documents, and witnesses have not all moved forward in significant ways by late July, Pelosi (or any Speaker worth her salt) ought to be able to convene an impeachment inquiry vote with fewer than ten Democrats dissenting and hopefully three or more Republicans in favor.

I think the alternative of allowing both the past crimes and the ongoing obstruction remaining unaddressed by impeachment through the end of summer or beyond is an absolute dead end for Democrats, and hope that Pelosi can see that.


MT Gov. Steve Bullock on NPR's Here & Now


I was quite impressed with this interview, especially how Bullock spoke up for rural voters, held to his principles, and deftly avoided most of the culture war traps the reporter (Jeremy Hobson) tried to set without sounding wishy-washy. Some highlights:

"Fundamentally — I mean, Roe versus Wade set out the course pretty darn well 45 years ago, and I think that's what we should be following," he says. "As opposed to attacking women's health, we could figure out ways to promote it."


"We need to do everything we can to mitigate harmful effects of coal-power emissions as we transition. And that's what we've done in Montana, both doubling wind, quadrupling solar. But it's also critical that we support those hardworking communities at the center of that transition. I mean these are folks who've worked their whole lives to power our country, and now many Democrats and others, they act like they're really part of the problem. ... We have to be able to show working people that Democrats are on their side."


"What I would do is actually bring the global community together and say that if it's going to be tech, you can't turn around and say, 'All right, you have to transfer all the tech if it's going to be built in China.' If it's going to be trade, it's actually going to be, 'You have to open up fair trade just as the expectations are that we'd do.' I mean I think that they're playing a long game. The thought that even what the president announced yesterday is, 'We'll give farmers some subsidies for those lost markets.' Don't kid yourself. In Montana and Iowa and everywhere else, that payment isn't going to make up for when countries like Brazil then end up getting some of the market share. It'll impact us for years and years and years to come."


"I think the discussion ... what's even more problematic in some ways is, when there was a transition to put Harriet Tubman on, saying, 'OK, we're not even going to have that discussion anymore' — I think that is problematic. And I think what we've seen of the current administration is really trying to divide people, and pour gasoline on the divisions in this country that we already have. That's no way to run a country."

More text & full 11-minute audio at link above. After hearing it, I'd describe Bullock as one to watch, and potentially at least a good possible VP candidate for Warren.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again: we have an impressive number of excellent people vying for the Democratic nomination in 2020.


Very important.

Klobuchar has decided to occupy the "moderate" niche during this campaign. Thus, it's all the more important that her position on choice be so clear and defensible.

No waffling, no apologies, just a defense of choice as it has stood since 1974: this is a moderate position and articulation that I can embrace.



Excellent proposal!

Senator Harris continues to impress me with substantive proposals that most often would bend the arc of this country's future toward justice. This is definitely one of them that every Democratic candidate should embrace.



Thanks for the link.

I am on DU very frequently, but not constantly. I missed this one.

I still think that people denying that it was a picket line are off-base. In this day and age, actual strikes are very punishing to workers. I support union actions above and beyond strikes, and I think that every Democrat should.

Work-to-rule, workplace slowdowns, public protests, off-site picket lines: these are the least of what will be necessary to regain workplace protections and fair wages.


Joe Biden crosses a picket line to fundraise w/ healthcare exec?!?

With Protest Outside Big-Dollar Fundraiser, Healthcare Union Members Call on Biden to Back Their Fight Against Kaiser

byJake Johnson, staff writer


Note: Published under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License, so reproduced in full from link above. Emphases added.

"Joe Biden's statements about mental health will ring hollow if he can't make them directly to giant HMOs like Kaiser."

Healthcare workers protest as former Vice President Joe Biden attends a fundraiser at the Los Angeles home of Kaiser Foundation board member Cynthia Telles.

Workers with a California healthcare union gathered Wednesday to voice their disapproval as 2020 presidential candidate Joe Biden attended a big-dollar fundraiser at the Los Angeles home of a Kaiser Foundation board member.

As HuffPost reported, the National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) "is locked in a bitter, yearslong fight with Kaiser over mental health staffing levels in the healthcare provider's California facilities."

Union representatives called on Biden—who is presenting himself on the campaign trail as a "union man"—to cancel the event, which was hosted by Kaiser Foundation board member Dr. Cynthia Telles. The Kaiser Foundation is a subsidiary of the healthcare giant Kaiser Permanente.

NUHW president Sal Rosselli said he never heard back from Biden's team.

"Kaiser, Kaiser, you can't hide, we can see your greedy side!" union members chanted outside of Telles's home.

According to an invitation seen by HuffPost, average contributions at the event ranged from $250 per person to $2,800—the maximum for individual donations in a presidential primary.

"The executive board members, the president of Kaiser Permanente—these executives are writing big checks to the vice president," Rosselli told ABC News ahead of Wednesday's event. "We'd ask him to use his influence with them to fix their mental healthcare system, to work with their clinicians to do it, to urge Cynthia Telles to meet with the psychologists—her fellow psychologists—to learn the inadequacies of the current system."

John Nelson, vice president of communications at Kaiser Permanente, attacked the union's demonstration in a statement shortly after the fundraiser began.

"This is a publicity stunt by union leadership disguised as a bargaining tactic aimed at disrupting a board member's event," Nelson said.

NUHW vice president Elizabeth White responded on Twitter, "This is no stunt!"

According to HuffPost, NUHW "has long alleged that Kaiser understaffs its mental health clinics, leading to long waits for vulnerable patients. The union has demanded that Kaiser hire more therapists and put pay and benefits on par with other employees in medical care."

On Twitter, NUHW said Biden's past "statements about mental health will ring hollow if he can't make them directly to giant HMOs like [Kaiser]."

This is unacceptable from any Democratic candidate.


The hype is so overblown.

The environment is changing: temperature and rainfall disruptions, elevated CO2, soil loss, etc. Unsurprisingly, certain "invasive" plants are taking advantage of it.

Knotweed can be controlled organically by grazing and mowing. We can also accept it in certain areas. I have some just down the road. I will use the string trimmer and mower to keep it away from my foundation. I hope to get a few sheep for the pastures eventually. Where it's too wet for sheep, the knotweed will be part of the ever-evolving ecosystem. Maybe I'll get some bees some day, and they will work the summer flowers.


Unlike Harry Reid, alas.

Remember when Reid would wring his hands and explain that there was nothing he could do without a blue slip from some Repub Senator?

Funny how McConnell's and Reid's range of powers were so different as Majority Leaders.

Heck, McConnell was more powerful as Minority Leader than Reid was as Majority.


She still swore an oath to the Constitution.

"We'll never know," is not an excuse to break a sworn oath of office.

We can have a friendly debate about the best course of action in 2007, but it would be purely academic at this point. Debating the best course of action of 2019 is considerably higher stakes. Congress has the explicit responsibility to conduct oversight and (via powers of the purse and legislation) even control of the Executive Branch which, if you had not noticed, has been completely rogue, corrupt, and autocratic since 1/2017. Trump is ignoring subpoenas and defying oversight right now. Pelosi needs to have a better plan at hand than she did in 2007, because matters are much more urgent now than then.


Such a strategy is doomed to failure.

Democrats must exercise the power they have thanks to their present House majority.

Democrats must discharge the Constitutional responsibilities they swore to uphold and defend in their oaths of office.

Pelosi is wrong about impeachment and future election prospects.

She was unfortunately wrong about impeachment over the Iraq war lies in 2006. Had Bush/Cheney been brought to justice, would we have had the housing crash? Would we be saddled with Justice Alito had inquiries into impeachment begun in January 2006? Would mainstream media in 2019 be talking about Bush/Cheney with a tinge of "good old days?" We'll never know.

[ON-EDIT - My timeline is mistaken in the paragraph immediately above, as Alito was confirmed in January '06, while Pelosi did not retake the Speaker's gavel until January '07 {thanks to Trumpocalypse for pointing this out just below}. My postulate that robust House push back against Bush/Cheney could have prevented other problems stemming from the late Bush/Cheney years stands.]

What I know right now, is that elections have been manipulated, and the Trump lust for power and secrecy is insatiable. Conducting business as usual like the days of Tip O'Neill is a grievous mistake (heck, it was a bad idea when O'Neill was doing it).

The House is all that Democrats have right now. If Pelosi shrinks from her own responsibilities again, I fear for our country.

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