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Member since: Fri May 8, 2009, 12:59 AM
Number of posts: 17,282

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Rand Paul Mocks Hillary Clinton Over Jobs Remark

Source: Huffington Post

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) wasted no time turning a Hillary Clinton remark about jobs into a laugh line on the campaign trail.

Republicans seized on the remark last week when, in a speech denouncing "trickle down" economics, the former secretary of state said, "Don't let anybody tell you that it's corporations and businesses that create jobs." Three days later, however, Clinton was back on the trail to take another stab at an argument popularized by progressive Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).

"Let me be absolutely clear about what I've been saying for a couple of decades: Our economy grows when businesses and entrepreneurs create good-paying jobs here in an America where workers and families are empowered to build from the bottom up and the middle out -- not when we hand out tax breaks for corporations that outsource jobs or stash their profits overseas," she said.

* * *
"Hillary Clinton comes up and she says, 'Businesses don't create jobs.' Anybody here think businesses don't create jobs?" Paul added. "I'm here today to endorse Pat Roberts and Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback, because you know what? They know that businesses do create jobs, and I hope you know that too."

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/10/29/rand-paul-hillary-clinton-jobs_n_6067732.html

Fox News and Rand Paul are on the attack savaging Hillary Clinton for suggesting that our economy is driven by fully employed workers purchasing goods. Instead, all that is holy and good comes from corporate America. How long before Chuck Todd intones that Hillary has disqualified herself?

Hillary Clinton knocks Joni Ernst for skipping ed board meetings

Source: Washington Post

Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton on Wednesday knocked Iowa Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst for failing to meet with newspaper editorial boards in her state.

"You have a lot to be proud of in this state. You test your candidates," Clinton said during a campaign event for Democrat Bruce Braley. She added: "They have to be willing answer the tough questions, which Bruce has been willing to do and his opponent has not. It truly seems like it should be disqualifying in Iowa of all states to avoid answering questions."

Last week, Ernst, a state senator, canceled her meeting with state's biggest paper, the Des Moines Register. According to a campaign official, she did so because she believed the paper's editorial board had shown a bias against her in editorials over the past two months.

Rekha Basu, a Register columnist, wrote on Facebook that Ernst has "also begged off meetings with The Cedar Rapids Gazette and The Dubuque Telegraph-Herald."

Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-politics/wp/2014/10/29/hillary-clinton-knocks-joni-ernst-for-skipping-ed-board-meetings/

Joni Ernst's decision to cancel meeting the Iowa's biggest newspapers perhaps reflects the new reality that Republicans can ignore independent local media and rely on corporate powered national and cable media to power their campaigns. Backed by millions in untraceable dark money, Republicans can sit pretty in a Fox News studio fielding soft balls because who actually reads newspapers these days?

Same-sex marriage gets another big boost from the Obama administration

Source: CSM

On Saturday, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Obama administration is adding six more states to the list of those where federal benefits would be granted to same-sex married couples, bringing the total such states to 32.

Practically speaking, that means gay couples legally married under state law now qualify for such federal benefits as Social Security and veterans' benefits.

"With each new state where same-sex marriages are legally recognized, our nation moves closer to achieving of full equality for all Americans," Mr. Holder said in a statement. "We are acting as quickly as possible with agencies throughout the government to ensure that same-sex married couples in these states receive the fullest array of benefits allowable under federal law."

Gay marriage recently became legal in Alaska, Arizona, Idaho, North Carolina, West Virginia and Wyoming – the six states Holder announced Saturday.

Read more: http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/DC-Decoder/2014/1025/Same-sex-marriage-gets-another-big-boost-from-the-Obama-administration

NY Ebola Infected Doctor Flew To U.S. By Way of Europe

Does the U.S. have the current ability to track the millions of folks who fly in from other areas besides Africa with a further ability to trace where their flights may have originally originated from within the past week? In Dr. Spencer's case, he had a three day lay over in Europe.


Dr. Spencer had been working with Doctors Without Borders in Guinea treating Ebola patients, and completed his work on Oct. 12, Dr. Bassett said. He flew out of the country on Oct. 14, traveling via Europe, and arrived in New York on Oct. 17.

Mother Jones (Early Oct) - "Sen. Inhofe (R) Blocks Funds for Ebola Intervention"

Even after the House dropped its early opposition in September to the White House's funding request for Ebola, you still had GOP Senators like Inhofe tying up efforts to respond to the Ebola crisis as late as earlier this month, Yet, the cable news continues to let Republicans spout off about how the President has not done enough to combat Ebola.


House legislators have approved the transfer of $750 million toward the fight to contain Ebola, which continues to rapidly spread across West Africa. The figure is still below the $1 billion request from the Department of Defense—and the budget battle is not over. It is currently holed up in the Senate dependent on Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), a ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, to give his approval.

After Sen. Inhofe and Republicans on the House Armed Services Committee initially raised concerns, a limit of $50 million was put on the transfer until the DoD provided details on how the money would be spent to address the crisis. Now, with plans to deploy 4,000 troops to the region, $750 million to fund a six-month mission has been approved by both the House Armed Services Committee and the Appropriations subcommittee. According to The Hill, however, a spokesperson from Inhofe's office confirmed the Senator would not change his mind even in light of approval from other committees because the expense "would add demands on a defense budget already stretched thin." The money would come from an account currently funding the war in Afghanistan.

There has already been one fatality from the virus in the US, heightening concerns that more could follow, and health officials are saying the epidemic in Africa is spiraling out of control. Last week a top US health official said the Ebola epidemic could have been contained and suggested sequester budget cuts disabled early response efforts. This week ranking members of the Congressional Subcommittee that oversees the budgets for the National Institutes of Health and The Centers for Control Disease and Prevention called for a hearing into the matter.

Reminder from 2 Months Ago - "House GOP cuts funding request to fight Ebola"

This is a reminder that before President Obama announced the expansion of U.S, efforts to combat Ebola in a speech to the U.N. back in September (before any U.S. cases of Ebola were reported), House Republicans were busy stonewalling on much needed funding. Only after Duncan was diagnosed with Ebola did House Republicans ultimately agree to the President's request at which time they accused the President of not doing enough. Does the media note this discrepancy? No.


House Republicans indicated Tuesday that they will provide less than half of the White House's funding request to fight Ebola in the next government spending bill.

According to a source familiar with the negotiations, House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) agreed as of Tuesday morning to spend a total of $40 million to fight the epidemic in the 2015 spending bill.

his would include $25 million for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and $15 million for the Biological Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) to ramp up production of an experimental anti-Ebola drug, the source said.

The White House had asked for $88 million for Ebola in total, including $58 million for BARDA, which is involved in coordinating experimental treatments during public health emergencies.

"Citing security threat, Obama expands U.S. role fighting Ebola Citing security threat"

Republicans are now attacking President Obama's response to the Ebola crisis, but this ignores their own efforts to derail this response. First, before the first U.S. Ebola case, President Obama was announcing an expansion of U.S. efforts to fight Ebola at the U.N. well before other super powers like China or Russia.


(Reuters) - President Barack Obama on Tuesday called West Africa's deadly Ebola outbreak a looming threat to global security and announced a major expansion of the U.S. role in trying to halt its spread, including deployment of 3,000 troops to the region.

"The reality is that this epidemic is going to get worse before it gets better," Obama said at the Atlanta headquarters of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

"But, right now, the world still has an opportunity to save countless lives. Right now, the world has the responsibility to act, to step up and to do more. The United States of America intends to do more," he added.

The U.S. plan, a dramatic expansion of Washington's initial response last week, won praise from the U.N. World Health Organization, aid workers and officials in West Africa. Experts said it was still not enough to contain the epidemic, which is rapidly spreading and has caused already-weak local public health systems to buckle under the strain of fighting it.

Koch brothers and big utilities campaign to unplug solar power

If you ever wonder what is the end game for the Koch brothers and why they and other right wing billionaires are investing millions to turn the Senate red, it all comes down to the bottom line:


The Koch brothers have a new ploy to protect the traditional energy business that helped make them the planet’s fifth- and sixth-richest humans. They are funding a campaign to shackle solar energy consumers who have escaped the grip of big electric utilities.

Of all the pro-business, anti-government causes they have funded with their billions, this may be the most cynical and self-serving. On Sunday, a Los Angeles Times story by Evan Halper outlined the Koch’s latest scheme. Along with anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist, several major power companies and a national association representing conservative state legislators, the brothers are aiming to kill preferences for the burgeoning solar power industry that have been put into law in dozens of states. Kansas, North Carolina and Arizona are their first targets, with more to come.

They already have their first victory. On Monday, Oklahoma’s Republican Gov. Mary Fallin signed a bill passed by the GOP-controlled Legislature that authorizes electric utilities to tack a surcharge on the bills of private citizens who have installed solar panels or wind turbines on their homes. That’s right, Oklahomans who have spent money to generate their own clean and green power now must pay compensation to the power companies.

This sounds a bit like government trampling on the independence of the citizenry. You’d think the tea party would be protesting and militia groups would be riding in with guns drawn. But since it is Republicans and big business doing the trampling, there is, as yet, no outcry from the libertarian crowd.

Black Vote Seen as Last Hope for Democrats to Hold Senate

Source: NY Times

WASHINGTON — The confidential memo from a former pollster for President Obama contained a blunt warning for Democrats. Written this month with an eye toward Election Day, it predicted “crushing Democratic losses across the country” if the party did not do more to get black voters to the polls.

“African-American surge voters came out in force in 2008 and 2012, but they are not well positioned to do so again in 2014,” Cornell Belcher, the pollster, wrote in the memo, dated Oct. 1. “In fact, over half aren’t even sure when the midterm elections are taking place.”

Mr. Belcher’s assessment points to an urgent imperative for Democrats: To keep Republicans from taking control of the Senate, as many are predicting, they need black voters in at least four key states. Yet the one politician guaranteed to generate enthusiasm among African Americans is the same man many Democratic candidates want to avoid: Mr. Obama.

Now, Democrats are deploying other prominent black elected officials and other surrogates, buttressed by sophisticated voter targeting efforts, to stoke black turnout. At the White House, the president is waging an under-the-radar campaign, recording video advertisements, radio interviews and telephone calls specifically targeting his loyal African-American base.

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/19/us/in-black-vote-democrats-see-lifeline-for-midterms.html?hpw&rref=politics&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&version=HpHedThumbWell&module=well-region®ion=bottom-well&WT.nav=bottom-well

Minorities and young voters just don't turn out during mid-term elections. This is why many Democrats have often tilted right during the mid-terms to cater to those folks who actually vote, the elderly and white males, which just further alienates minorities and young voters. Of course, this time around, Republicans have doubled down on voter suppression efforts, which should be reason enough to turn out and fight these efforts to disenfranchise the people.

Still, its a chicken and egg, sort of question. My take is that until we can manage to increase turnout, politicians will not be responsive to liberal priorities during mid-term elections. In other words, politicians spout rhetoric in order to appeal to those people who they think will turn out. More minorities are turning out during Presidential elections, which is why even Republicans are trying to pay lip service to immigration reform. However, the mid-terms still remain a huge demographic challenge.

Sen. Warren: ‘The game is rigged, and the Republicans rigged it’

Source: Washington Post

NORTHFIELD, Minn. — Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) brought her populist message Saturday to this small college town to rev up the final weeks of Sen. Al Franken's reelection campaign, but also to claim the mantle of the modern liberal movement's political godfather.

Speaking before more than 400 people at Carleton College, Warren repeatedly invoked the spirit of the late Paul Wellstone, the fiery liberal senator who died 12 years ago this month in a plane crash during his reelection campaign. Wellstone remains a revered figure in Minnesota politics, and his brand of populism -- out of step in the Clintonian Democratic Party of the 1990s -- is now mainstream among leading liberal activists. Warren has become the most prominent public face of that movement, and the Wellstone disciples in this town 40 miles south of Minneapolis gave their approval Saturday.

"The game is rigged, and the Republicans rigged it," Warren said to loud cheers.

It's part of a three-state tour of Senate campaigns for Warren, who later Saturday headed to St. Paul for a get-out-the-vote rally on behalf of Franken, Gov. Mark Dayton (D) and other candidates. Franken and Dayton are strong favorites to win reelection next month.

Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-politics/wp/2014/10/18/warren-in-minnesota-the-game-is-rigged/

Edit to note that the Washington Post now has renamed the article to "The game is rigged," but taking out Warren's quote, which says, "and the Republicans rigged it."
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