Tag Archives: Politics

Ted Cruz Hints At Presidential Bid With “Yes We Can” Ad (VIDEO)

aaorielly

Thanks Ted for the email showing what a tool Ted Cruz is…

Liberals Unite

Tea Party darling Ted Cruz has put out this new video and it appears this is his way of hinting that he will be the first official conservative to get into the 2016 GOP clown car.

It’s no secret he is loved by the dwindling and out-of-touch with reality Tea Party and he’ll definitely put on a great show.

It’s a little early to be campaigning and maybe Cruz should have waited to come up with his own  campaign slogan instead of swiping Obama’s “Yes We Can.”

His platform is completely unsurprising: Defund Obamacare – blah blah blah. YOU CAN’T HAVE MY GUN, blah blah blah. Abolish the IRS, blah blah blah.

You can tell he is serious because his voice goes up several octaves and he clenches his fists when he’s making a point. He almost growls when he speaks.

Constitution…First Amendment…Guns…Grrrr…Grrr.

Oh, it’s going to be a bumpy ride.

 

 

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Filed under 2016 Hopefuls, Ted Cruz

Anderson Cooper Slams Senator Who Doesn’t ‘Know Anyone In Arizona That Would Discriminate’

Post image for Anderson Cooper Slams Senator Who Doesn’t ‘Know Anyone In Arizona That Would Discriminate’

The New Civil Rights Movement

Monday night, CNN’s Anderson Cooper interviewed Arizona Republican state senator Al Melvin, who is running for governor and is the only candidate actively supporting SB-1062, the anti-gay “religious freedom” license to discriminate bill. Senator Melvin could not give Cooper any examples of religious discrimination that SB-1062 would prevent in the Grand Canyon State. He used the phrase “religious freedom” a lot, but, despite the ten-minute unedited interview, was at a loss for words to support the existence of the bill that currently sits on Gov. Jan Brewer‘s desk.

In fact, Anderson Cooper was forced to repeatedly state, “but you can’t cite one example where religious freedom is under attack in Arizona.”

Crickets.

“Not now, no, but how about tomorrow, Sen. Melvin offered, after pausing.

“Well — I don’t understand what that means,” Cooper responded. “I mean, if you can’t cite in the entire history of Arizona, one case where religious freedom has been under attack, or even in the last year where it’s been under attack, is this really the most important thing for you to be workin’ on in the state House and the Senate?”

“We’re doing many things, sir,” Sen. Melvin replied. “We are trying to stop Common Core from being implemented in the state, we’re trying to secure the border… We can do multiple things here, and this is one of them — to protect religious freedom.”

Cooper then offered an example of an unwed mother and a divorced woman who, under SB-1062, could easily be targeted by those exercising their “religious freedom.”

“I don’t know where you’re getting your hypotheticals,” Melvin said. “Who would be against an unwed mother?”

Cooper, again, was forced to educate the Senator. “Jesus spoke against divorce,” he told the Arizona Republican. “He never said anything about gay people.”

“I think you’re being far-fetched with all due respect sir,” Sen. Melvin told Cooper. “As a Christian, as most God-fearing men and women would respect unwed mothers, divorced women — who would discriminate against them. I’ve never heard of discriminating against people like that.”

Melvin refused to consider Cooper’s purely plausible examples.

“You know, all of the pillars of society are under attack in the United States. The family, the traditional family, traditional marriage, mainline churches, the Boy Scouts, you name it. All of the pillars of society as we know it today are under attack, including religious freedom.”

(The irony of Sen. Melvin telling an openly-gay man that “all of the pillars of society,” including “traditional marriage,” “are under attack in the United States,” escaped the Senator.)

Cooper then asked, “Under attack by who?”

“Well, Melvin responded, “it’s throughout the country. We had a ballot measure a few years ago, to define marriage as between one man and one woman… and it passed and that now is part of our constitution.”

Cooper then reminded Melvin that, “no florist is going to be forced to participate in a gay wedding, because, ‘a’ — you don’t have gay weddings in Arizona, and you’re not going to any time soon — and ‘b’ under Arizona law, it’s OK to discriminate against a gay person, to refuse them service already.”

“With all due respect sir, I don’t know anyone in Arizona that would discriminate against a fellow human being.”

“Discrimination doesn’t exist in Arizona?,” Cooper, shocked, asked, noting he knows people in New York who discriminate.

“Well, maybe you ought to move to Arizona. We’re more people-friendly here, apparently.”

Senator Melvin’s lack of understanding of the bill, the intended or unintended consequences of the bill, and what discrimination actually means and that it exists is appalling and embarrassing.

Sen. Melvin closed by reminding Cooper that he is “the only candidate for governor in Arizona who is promoting and defending this bill.”

Exactly.

Below is the video. Part two includes NYU Law Professor Kenji Yoshino who defended Cooper’s analysis.

Towards the end of part two, Cooper blasts Melvin who refuses to state whether or not he believes firing an LGBT person for being LGBT is discrimination.

“You’re going to be governor of gay and lesbian people, and you can’t even go on the record and say if a gay or lesbian person is fired simply for being gay or lesbian, that’s discrimination?” Cooper incredulously inquired. “You can’t even make that leap and say, ‘Yeah, that would be discrimination’?”

“I don’t know of any case like you just cited, sir,” Melvin responded.

Visit CNN to watch video…

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Filed under Anderson Cooper, Arizona

Keeping Tabs on Obama’s Church Attendance Is No Way to Gauge His Faith

Photo by Pool photo by Drew Angerer

The Daily Beast

President Obama has demonstrated the depth and breadth of his faith in numerous ways and in a variety of settings since taking office.
An article in the New York Times last week tallied up the number of times President Obama has attended church while in office: more than Reagan, less than Bush, and when it comes to all presidents, probably somewhere in between. The piece sought to make a broader point about the president’s religiosity based on these rough metrics–but that equation misses a lot else in the process. So I thought it might be illuminating to provide just a glimmer of Obama’s faith, a few moments out of many that stood out to me over the years of working and praying with our president.One of my favorite memories in church with Obama was from 2007, at Brown Chapel A.M.E. in Selma, Alabama. The young senator was at Brown Chapel to worship and mark the anniversary of Bloody Sunday, the day in 1965 when civil rights activists faced dogs and batons as they marched from Selma to Montgomery.

Obama took the pulpit to deliver a powerful sermon–one of my favorites, later called “The Joshua Generation” speech, in which he masterfully linked his own diverse lineage, the Civil Rights movement of the 50s and 60s, the journey of the people of Israel from Egypt to Canaan, and the political moment of that day.

But it was what happened before his formal remarks that really stood out to me. We staff had prepared a standard “acknowledgments card” for Obama to read, with the names of clergy, elected officials, and other dignitaries to thank before his speech. He read those acknowledgments but when he was finished, Senator Obama said there was one more person who hadn’t been recognized.

He looked out into the packed congregation and saw a wizened face sitting several pews back, an old man who looked to be well north of 80 years. None of the other speakers had noticed the man at that point, and we had not introduced him to Senator Obama before the service began. But Obama pointed to him and said, “and finally friends, here with us today is Dr. C.T. Vivian. Let’s pause and thank him. That’s the man Dr. Martin Luther King called the greatest preacher to ever live.”

Vivian’s smile grew wide and eyes teary at the unexpected acknowledgment. Several of us marveled at how we had missed the great Dr. Vivian–whose activism precipitated the 1965 march in the first place–and how Obama had picked his face out from so many others in the crowd. It was a beautiful nod across generations, a pause from that pulpit that I’ll never forget.

There were many other remarkable moments of worship. I remember being at Allen Chapel A.M.E. in Washington for Easter services in 2010, when the entire Obama family–Barack, Michelle, Malia, Sasha, and Ms. Robinson–knelt to take the bread and wine of communion. A week earlier, a drive-by shooting had rocked that same neighborhood, taking five lives and injuring four. The First Family’s attendance at that Easter service added a bit of temporal healing in that community to the eternal hope symbolized by Christ’s body and blood.

Continue reading here…

H/t: DB

4 Comments

Filed under President Obama, Religion

There was nothing high-minded about the budget deal

Smiles before the debt storm.

Smiles before the debt storm. Photo: (T.J. Kirkpatrick/Getty Images)

The WeekTaegan Goddard

Many recent articles have trumpeted the “bipartisan breakthrough” that led to a federal budget deal. Don’t believe any of them. Partisan warfare is very much alive.

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), a key broker of the budget deal, signaled that a standoff over the debt ceiling is coming soon.

Said Ryan: “We, as a caucus, along with our Senate counterparts, are going to meet and discuss what it is we want to get out of the debt limit. We don’t want ‘nothing’ out of the debt limit. We’re going to decide what it is we can accomplish out of this debt limit fight.”

The comments show how broken our legislative system has become. Just days ago, Ryan agreed to a budget deal that increases the federal debt — and hailed it in a series of interviews — but now he won’t agree to raise the debt ceiling mandated by the very same budget deal.

In the last fiscal standoff in October, the Obama administration held firm and refused to negotiate over the debt ceiling. Expect the same reaction this time.

Of course, the real reason there was a budget deal is that Republicans felt it was politically advantageous. With the White House on the defensive for nearly two months over the ObamaCare implementation, Republicans don’t want to do anything to distract from their woes.

Newt Gingrich said it best: “I think this is mediocre policy and brilliant politics. It doesn’t get them what they want on policy terms, but it strips away the danger that people will notice anything but ObamaCare. And the longer the country watches ObamaCare, the more likely the Democrats are to lose the Senate.”

He’s right. The budget deal probably is good politics — at least in the very short term.

So as both sides move the country to the edge of the fiscal brink early next year, remember it’s all about politics. But will the politics still be good for either side?

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Filed under Budget Deficit

A Progressive Pope is Driving the Wingnuts Batty

Daily Kos

As Pope Francis comes more and more out of the Progressive Closet he begins to gain more and more pushback from the Rightwing who have long claimed that their Unrepentant Greed was Godly.

Unfortunately it isn’t, and the Pope has been most clear on this.

“As long as the problems of the poor are not radically resolved by rejecting the absolute autonomy of markets and financial speculation and by attacking the structural causes of inequality, no solution will be found for the world’s problems or, for that matter, to any problems,” the pope said in the 224-page document that essentially serves as his official platform.

And the response has been truly amazing.  For example Palin’s overreaction to the Pope’s statements on Twitter actually made her do something she seems to never done before.  (Except for one other time to John McCain for possibly, maybe, making him LOSE!)Apologize.

She didn’t apologize for TrooperGate.  She didn’t apologize for “Refudiate”.  She didn’t apologize for quitting in the middle of her Term as Governor of Alaska.  She didn’t apologize for defending Dr. Laura’s N-Word use with “Don’t Retreat, Relaod! She didn’t apologize for her BLOOD LIBELaccusations.

But she apologized to the Pope.  I think something unique and different is going on here. 

The Pope’s comments apparently got deeply under the skin of Fox Business Host Stuart Varney.

The Raw Story

“Capitalism, in my opinion, is a liberator,” he said. “The free choice of millions of people is the essence of freedom. In my opinion, society benefits most when people are free to pursue their own self-interest. I know that sounds like a contradiction, but it is not. When individuals are free, we collectively are better off in every way, financially and spiritually.”

It doesn’t seem to matter to Varney that the Pope didn’t criticize “People’s Freedom or Self-Interest” – he criticized The Markets. He criticized the manipulation of those markets using financial speculation. It’s not an accident that Varney gets this wrong, because he’s a knave. A lapdog of the Markets.  His job is to make sure that his True Religion - Unfeterred Greed – is never questioned, never criticized and if it is that persons veracity and character has to beDestroyed.It just becomes a little difficult when that person – Is the Holy Pontiff.

See how he tries to rewrite and redefine the Pope’s words for him.

“I go to church to save my soul,” Varney said. “It’s got nothing to do with my vote. Pope Francis has linked the two. He has offered direct criticism of a specific political system. He has characterized negatively that system. I think he wants to influence my politics.”

A political system?  He criticized a Political System? No actually, he didn’t.  He criticized aFinancial System, by putting that system into a Moral Context.  A context in which it is sorely, severely lacking.  Politics is about how people make choices in who their Political Leaders will be.  In this case Varney is confusing Politics with Finances, and not hardly by accident.For years we’ve been hearing from the Right-wing how the U.S. is a “Christian Nation”.  How we should and must let our Christian Value guide how we vote, and how we govern.  That such considerations are what drives the anti-Choice movement, and the Prayer-In-Schools movement and the Creationist/Anti-Science movement – yet when the Head of the Largest Christian Organization in the World says that our financial systems should have a moral component.

Continue reading here…

 

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Filed under GOP, Pope Francis

DNC Wants To Help You Talk With ‘Your Republican Uncle’ On Thanksgiving

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You gotta love this idea from Democrats.  Just in time for the holidays at that…

TPM LiveWire

The Democratic National Committee is launched a Thanksgiving-themed website Wednesday called YourRepublicanUncle.com that purports to help people deal with “lively discussions with Republican relatives about politics” that occur during the holiday season.

YourRepublicanUncle.com features talking points Democrats can use during hypothetical political conversations with their family members.

“This time of year, the only thing more annoying than holiday traffic is an awkward conversation with family about politics,” DNC Digital Director Matt Compton wrote in an email announcing the site. “We designed YourRepublicanUncle.com so that it look greats and loads quickly on your phone — no getting ambushed when you go back for seconds on stuffing.”

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Filed under Affordable Care Act

5 Obamacare Facts Republicans Don’t Want To Talk About

K-Sebelius Resized

Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius- Photo: Center for American Progress Action Fund via Flickr

If Kathleen Sebelius personally sabotaged Healthcare dot gov, shouldn’t she be the GOP 2016 frontrunner?

The National Memo

1.  People Want To Give It A Chance

2.  If Canceling Insurance Is Bad, Repealing Obamacare Would Be A Nightmare

3.  We Don’t Have Real Sign-Up Numbers And That’s Not A Big Deal — Yet

4.  Republicans Have Made The Problems They’re Complaining About Worse

5.  The Law’s Biggest Disadvantage Is Now Its Biggest Advantage

 

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Filed under Affordable Care Act

Rachel Maddow Sums Up The Shutdown In One Incredible Graphic

“Through this process, Republicans said they would shut down the government, or, once it was shut down, they would refuse to open the government unless they got each one of these things. Of all of these things that they demanded, they got none of them! None…these have been sixteen bad days for the country and the economy.”

 

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Filed under GOP

Watch Barack Obama Brilliantly Mock the GOP’s Opposition to Obamacare! (Video)

AATTP

Evil, harpy Ann Coulter loves nothing more than to bray insults, and one of her favorites has to do with overly “polite” liberals.

Putting aside the fact that Dr. Mengele would make her look “polite” by comparison, Obama proved recently that conservatives don’t exactly have a monopoly (much as they lovemonopolies) on the barbed response.

Lacking any cohesive plans of their own, Republicans have long since resorted to name-callingfear-mongering and playing to the Revelations-specific dominionism of their core audience. In his address to a capacity crowd at Prince George Community College, Obama pulled no punches in calling out the American Taliban on their motivations, hyperbole and outright lies.

[The Republicans] biggest fear at this point is not that the Affordable Care Act will fail. What they’re worried about is that it’s going to succeed. I mean, think about it: If it was as bad they’re saying it’s going to be, then they could just go ahead and let it happen, and then everybody would hate it so much, and everybody would vote to repeal it.  And that would be the end of it.  So, what is it that they’re so scared about?”

At which point the audience loudly responded “YOU!” 

After a good laugh regarding the GOP’s Baracknophobia, he continued:

You know, they have made SUCH a big political issue out of this — death panels, Armageddon, killing Granny — if it actually works, they’ll look pretty bad. If it actually works, that’ll mean everything they’re saying wasn’t true, and they’re just playing politics. 

Just the other day, one Republican in Congress said we need to shut this thing down before the marketplaces open and people get to see that they’ll be getting coverage, and getting these subsidies because — and I’m going to quote him here — he said, ‘It’s going to prove almost impossible to undo Obamacare.’ So, in other words, we’ve got to shut this thing downbefore people find out that they like it. That’s a strange argument.

Very true, Barack. Stranger still must be the dawning reality that for all their terroristic opposition to the bill, Republicans will never, ever be able to take credit for any part of it. They can and will profit from it, but they can’t do anything but admit opposition to something they know their constituents will like. That’s going to put them in a hell of a position come election day. There was a time when Republicans could have turned that ship’s course, and at least helped to shape the bill; but now, with the utter failure of their attempts at blackmail, all the political chips they dropped in the “We Hate Barry” bucket (including the very word “Obamacare“) are about to go to the Democrats by default. The very fact that Obama now proudly owns the once pejorative word “Obamacare” should prove that much.

And the closer we get, the more desperate they get. Over the last few weeks, the rhetoric has just been cranked up to a place I’ve never seen before. One congressman said that Obamacare is the most DANGEROUS PIECE OF LEGISLATION EVER PASSED. EVER. In the history of America, this is the most dangerous piece of legislation! You had a state representative somewhere who said it’s as destructive to personal, individual liberty as The Fugitive Slave Act.[...]

Think about that; affordable health care is worse than a law that allows slave owners to get their runaway slaves back.

That would have been a good place to leave it…a good stage man knows when to leave the audience on a thought. And he did…with this one:

And here’s another one that I’ve heard — I like this one. ‘We have to repeal this failure before it literally kills women, kills children, kills senior citizens.’ Now, I have to say that one was from six months ago. I just want to point out that we still have women, we still have children, and we still have senior citizens.

Very true, Barack. Stranger still must be the dawning reality that for all their terroristic opposition to the bill, Republicans will never, ever be able to take credit for any part of it. They can and will profit from it, but they can’t do anything but admit opposition to something they know their constituents will like. That’s going to put them in a hell of a position come election day. There was a time when Republicans could have turned that ship’s course, and at least helped to shape the bill; but now, with the utter failure of their attempts at blackmail, all the political chips they dropped in the “We Hate Barry” bucket (including the very word “Obamacare“) are about to go to the Democrats by default. The very fact that Obama now proudly owns the once pejorative word “Obamacare” should prove that much.

And the closer we get, the more desperate they get. Over the last few weeks, the rhetoric has just been cranked up to a place I’ve never seen before. One congressman said that Obamacare is the most DANGEROUS PIECE OF LEGISLATION EVER PASSED. EVER. In the history of America, this is the most dangerous piece of legislation! You had a state representative somewhere who said it’s as destructive to personal, individual liberty as The Fugitive Slave Act.

[...]

Think about that; affordable health care is worse than a law that allows slave owners to get their runaway slaves back.

That would have been a good place to leave it…a good stage man knows when to leave the audience on a thought. And he did…with this one:

And here’s another one that I’ve heard — I like this one. ‘We have to repeal this failure before it literally kills women, kills children, kills senior citizens.’ Now, I have to say that one was from six months ago. I just want to point out that we still have women, we still have children, and we still have senior citizens.

 

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Filed under Affordable Care Act, U.S. Politics

Why on Earth Would Any Minority or Woman Want To Be a Republican?

This is not an indictment on conservatism in general.

The Big Slice - Peter Fagan

No, the above question was not meant to be facetious. I’m quite serious. I’ve thought about this for quite some time and I’m convinced that if you’re an African-American, Latino or woman and you are a registered Republican you either must hate yourself or you simply haven’t been paying very close attention. The analogy is like being stuck in an abusive marriage. No matter how hard you try to make things work out, in the end you always wind up with a black eye.

I have never seen a political party so completely go out of its way to so thoroughly alienate so many key constituencies the way the Republican Party has. Pick a group, any group, and the list of egregious conduct is appalling.  When it comes to myopia, racism, homophobia, chauvinism and misogyny, the GOP is a virtual treasure trove of spoils.

Whether it’s African-Americans being denied the right to vote; Hispanics who have to listen to derogatory words like “wetback;” women having to deal with “legitimate rape” comments and threats of vaginal probes; or gays and lesbians being compared with farm animals, it’s astonishing that the GOP isn’t comprised completely of white, heterosexual males by now. Though at the rate it’s offending these groups, that fate is inevitable.

At the risk of channeling my inner Nixon, I want to make this perfectly clear. This is not an indictment of conservatism in general. I fully understand and accept the fact that there are indeed conservatives out there who are African-American, Hispanic, female and even homosexual. They are just as much entitled to their beliefs as I am. It’s not their beliefs that I’m questioning, it’s their sanity.

Woody Allen once famously said that he would never want to belong to any club that would have him as a member. I would submit that for minorities and women, the reverse seems to be playing out. Despite demonstrative proof that they are not welcomed, some yearn all-the-more for membership.

You hear about this all the time from therapists who have clients that cling to failed relationships or put up with unacceptable behavior under the naïve belief that the offending party will come around and treat them with respect. But it rarely, if ever, happens. The abuse continues unabated. Why? Because there are no real consequences, that’s why.

Think about it. Despite getting soundly beaten on a national level in last year’s elections, Republicans continue to hold their majority in the House thanks to gerrymandered congressional districts. Even the most optimistic projections concede that it might well be several election cycles before the House flips back to Democratic control. That means that the GOP can be as crazy as a loon and not suffer the consequences of its actions.  Translation: the circus shenanigans will continue.

The Republican Party has, for all intents and purposes, been kidnapped by the most outrageous, demented and hate-filled bunch of individuals ever assembled under one tent. The only question that begs to be answered – the one I opened up with – is this. Why would any rational minority or woman with a modicum of self respect want to be anywhere near that tent, much less under it? Who would belong to such a club?

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Filed under 113th Congress, Republican Politics