Rick Perry

Red-state women will transform America

Red-state women will transform America

Wendy Davis, Alison Grimes (Credit: AP/Harry Cabluck/AP/John Flavell)

I’ve been watching with a great deal of anticipation and enthusiasm, the latest activities from political women in red states.  This could indeed be the beginning of change in America…


Forget what cynical pundits say. Democrats need to win states like Texas and Kentucky, and fed-up women are the key

Public Policy Polling is out with a new survey showing that Texas Gov. Rick Perry has actually increased his lead over state Sen. Wendy Davis in the wake of her nationally heralded filibuster against SB 5, the draconian antiabortion legislation Perry’s trying to pass in a second special section. It should be noted that Davis isn’t even a candidate for governor at this point, so this is a theoretical matchup absent any kind of campaign.

Still, the poll numbers are likely to bolster the already strong cynicism of Texas political observers about the chance that Davis could beat Perry if she fulfilled the dream of many liberal women nationwide and ran against him next year. Similarly, most journalists dismiss the chance that Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lunderman Grimes can knock off Sen. Mitch McConnell. But the rise of these red-state women is good news for Democrats, even if pundits say they can’t beat right-wing veterans (and national villains among liberals) like McConnell and Perry next year (and I’m not conceding that here). In most red states, the best hope for Democrats is a rising coalition of Latinos, black people, Asians, young voters and white women. Davis and Grimes could accelerate the future.

I’ve been struck by even liberal Texas reporters minimizing Davis’ chances, and suggesting that the national groundswell of support will hurt her in her home state. Writing in the New York Times, Texas Tribune reporter Jay Root reports that it “puzzles” Matthew Dowd, a former George W. Bush strategist, that Davis and her backers “are allying themselves with Hollywood actresses and handing Mr. Perry the ideological battle he so desperately needs to revive his standing — at least with the right,” Root writes.

“The best thing to do with Rick Perry is to make people laugh at him,” Dowd told Root. “If you get into a sort of ideological thing, and into a back and forth, that’s how Rick Perry survives.”

Another Texas Tribune writer, Ross Ramsey, wrote a piece headlined “For Davis, Opportunity Knocks at Inopportune Time,” arguing that the Fort Worth Democrat is little known outside her district and the state party is poorly organized to give her a statewide lift. “It’s her bad luck that she’s the fastest runner on a team that can’t seem to find its way to the track,” he writes. But then he concludes his piece by seeming to contradict it, claiming that if Davis doesn’t run now, “she’ll never have a better shot.” That’s puzzling – to follow his logic, she’d have a better shot if Democrats were better organized in a few years. So I’m not convinced anyone knows for sure that Davis can’t beat Perry.

Continue reading here


Rick Perry says he was “Praising” Wendy Davis

Sure you were, Governor Perry.  With that snark in your tone, you acted more like a gossiping teenager, spreading rumors.


Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) on Friday explained that he was simply “praising” state Sen. Wendy Davis (D) when he said it was “unfortunate” that she didn’t view abortions unfavorably based on her own experience as a teenage mother.

In a statement to the New York Daily News, the governor’s office explained that he was “praising Sen. Davis for her success despite coming from difficult circumstances.”

Davis, who led a 13-hour filibuster earlier this week to block passage of a bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks, responded on Thursday, chiding Perry for using “small words” that tarnished Lone Star state values.

“They are small words that reflect a dark and negative point of view,” she said in a statement. “Our governor should reflect our Texas values. Sadly, Gov. Perry fails that test.”

In his remarks at the National Right to Life conference in Dallas, Texas, Perry invoked Davis as someone who was born into hard circumstances but ultimately became a successful Harvard educated lawyer.

“Who are we to say that children born into the worst of circumstances can’t grow to live successful lives?” he asked. “She was the daughter of as single woman, she was a teenage mother herself. She managed to eventually graduate from Harvard Law School and serve in the Texas senate. It is just unfortunate that she hasn’t learned from her own example that every life must be given a chance to realize its full potential and that every life matters.”

Texas Gov. Rick Perry: Americans have no right to freedom from religion

Governor Rick Perry screenshot

I actually did a double take when I first saw the above headline on a political blog.

The Raw Story

During an announcement of the signing of the so-called “Merry Christmas Bill,” Texas Gov. Rick Perry and state Senator Robert Nichols (R-Jacksonville) said Thursday that freedom from religion was not included in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

“I’m proud we are standing up for religious freedom in our state,” Perry said. “Freedom of religion doesn’t mean freedom from religion.”

The new law states that students and school officials have the right to use religious greetings like “Merry Christmas” and display various religious holiday symbols on school grounds.

“I think it was Thomas Jefferson who said the price of liberty is eternal vigilance,” Nichols remarked. “One of those freedoms is the freedom of speech, freedom of expression, and as the governor was saying the Constitution refers to the freedom of religion, not the freedom from religion.”

“So, challenges to these freedoms that we enjoy can come in a lot of different ways,” the state senator continued. “They can come in very large ways like the war on terror or our freedoms can be taken away in small ways like the removal of a Christmas tree from a classroom.”

Watch video, uploaded to YouTube, below:


Rick Perry ‘Disgusted’ By Cartoon Linking Deregulation To Fertilizer Plant Explosion

Cartoon of Texas Governor Rick Perry saying “Business is booming” next to the exploding fertilizer plant

Gov. Rick Perry has been going around the country trying to recruit corporations and manufacturers to Texas.  His selling point has been that Texas has weak regulation rules for Businesses and Manufacturers.

Addicting Info

When Jack Ohman, a cartoonist for The Sacramento (CA) Bee and his editor, Stuart Leavenworth, ran the above cartoon in Sunday’s paper, they must have felt like a couple of kids who’d just set off a stink bomb on their mean and ornery neighbor’s porch, and run somewhere to hide, snigger up their sleeves, and wait for the fun to begin. The cartoon shows Texas Governor Rick Perry bragging about his state’s low taxes and lax business regulations (“Business is BOOMING in Texas!”) while something – presumably the fertilizer plant that exploded in West, TX on April 18 — goes “BOOM!”

Sure enough, Perry took the bait and fumed in a letter to the editor:

It was with extreme disgust and disappointment I viewed your recent cartoon. While I will always welcome healthy policy debate, I won’t stand for someone mocking the tragic deaths of my fellow Texans and our fellow Americans.

Leavenworth sharply retorted:

Jack Ohman’s cartoon of April 25 made a strong statement about Gov. Rick Perry’s disregard for worker safety, and his attempts to market Texas as a place where industries can thrive with few regulations. It is unfortunate that Gov. Perry, and some on the blogosphere, have attempted to interpret the cartoon as being disrespectful of the victims of this tragedy. As Ohman has made clear on his blog, he has complete empathy for the victims and people living by the plant. What he finds offensive is a governor who would gamble with the lives of families by not pushing for the strongest safety regulations.Perry’s letter is an attempt to distract people from that message.

Um, HELLO? Nobody’s mocking the 15 people — mostly firefighters and other emergency responders — who died fighting flames from the atom bomb-like blasts. We’re mocking YOU, Governor Perry, for being a callous, uncaring jerk who cares more about the well-being of your state’s businesses than about the people who live there. When the West Fertilizer Plant exploded, it leveled a four block radius, and witnesses reported that the blast was “like a tornado” or “like a nuclear bomb went off.” Yet, this could have been prevented: The plant was cited for a serious violation back in 2006, after receiving complaints about “a strong ammonia smell.” The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality investigated, but apparently nobody followed up. Furthermore, Theodoric Meyer from Salon reports that plant failed a partial inspection in 2011, and hadn’t had a full inspection by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration since 1985. Nor did anyone from the facility bother to tell the Department of Homeland Security — as required — about all that potentially explosive fertilizer.

Perry loves talking about getting the government off our backs. In fact, Perry ran a series of radio advertisements throughout California back in February, sneering at the Golden State’s higher taxes and regulations, and urging business owners to move to the Lone Star State:

Building a business is tough, but I hear that building a business in California is next to impossible. This is Texas governor Rick Perry, and I’ve got a message for California businesses. Come check out Texas. There are plenty of reasons Texas has been named the best state for doing business for eight years running. Visit TexasWideOpenForBusiness.Com, and see why our low taxes, sensible regulation, and fair legal system are just the thing to get your business moving … to Texas.

Yet this hypocrite still has no problem with getting help from the Federal Government when it suits him. After cutting the state’s fire department funding by 75% in 2011 — causing unprecedented levels of fire destruction and loss of life — Perry asked for federal funds to combat wild fires back in 2011. Yep, everything’s cheaper in Texas. Maybe that’s because 33% of people there are uninsured; two of your counties — Cameron and Hidalgo — have the highest poverty rates in the United States (41%); and your legislature cut $5.4 billion from education two years ago (your House’s new budget proposal will barely make a dent in them). Apparently, pro-business folks have forgotten about the old adage, “It takes money to make money.”

Last Thursday, April 25, the president attended a memorial for victims of the explosion, gave a moving speech, and promised that the nation would help the town recover and rebuild. Strange, how you don’t hear Perry and his cohorts howling about government spending now.

Rick Perry: Immigrant Release Is A ‘Federally Sponsored Jailbreak’

Texas Governor Rick Perry at CPAC 2013

CPAC has begun its annual parade of Tea Party fanatics bashing President Obama and his policies…

TPM LiveWire

Speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference outside of Washington on Thursday, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry decried immigration authorities for releasing several hundred detainees in response to sequester cuts.

President Obama’s handling of the sequester “would be laughable if he hadn’t taken it one step too far, dangerously releasing criminals onto our streets to make a political point,” he said. “When you have a federally sponsored jailbreak, –and don’t get confused that’s exactly what this is, a federally sponsored jailbreak — you cross the line from politics as spin to politics as a craven form of cynicism where everything goes.”

White House officials say the decision was made by ICE independently. Many detainees are not held on criminal grounds and Immigration officials say they only released low risk individuals, not anyone who was required to be held for serious charges.


Monday Blog Roundup 2-4-2013


The Evidence!!!
Republicans said they wanted evidence that Obama shoots skeet at Camp David and here..

10 Things to Know for Monday
Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be t..

VIDEO: Super Bowl halted by power cut
The Super Bowl XLVII clash between the Baltimore Ravens v San Francisco 49ers has bee..

Perry Fights Letting Gays in Boy Scouts
Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R), an Eagle Scout, “said emphatically Saturday that the Boy S..

Broad Powers Seen for Obama in Cyberstrikes
The administration is moving to approve the nation’s first rules for how the military..

What you may not know about gun violence in Chicago
Last week, students at Cary-Grove High School in Illinois heard two gunshots in the ..

A GOP filibuster of Chuck Hagel would be unprecedented
Chuck Hagel did not do well in his confirmation hearing before the Senate Armed Servi..

Video: Obama talks football, politics on Super Bowl Sunday
In an interview with CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley in advance of the Super Bow..

Twitter suspects Beyoncé fierceness caused Super Bowl blackout
Beyoncé says, “Give me all your power, Superdome!!”

10 Myths Conservative Media Will Use Against Immigration Reform
As congressional leaders debate a framework for comprehensive immigration reform tha..

Top Ten Things Republicans Hate More Than President Obama’s Second Inauguration

When one thinks about the failed GOP efforts to derail President Obama’s first term it’s hard to believe there are things they hate more than the POTUS’ second term…

Addicting Info

10. Nate Silver’s stupid predictions based on stupid “math”

9. Donald Trump and Birtherism (No, they’re not laughing with you…)

8. Sandra Fluke and her damn birth control pills (She riled up the slut vote!)

7. Rick Perry’s terrible memory (You couldn’t remember THREE agencies?!)

6. Karl Rove and Fox News (You said we would win in a landslide, you lying pricks!)

5. Non-rigged elections (WTF?! We passed those Voter ID laws for a reason!)

4. Rachel Maddow and her stupid facts (Freaking lesbian know-it-all…)

3. Minorities (Who the hell let them vote?!)

2. Republicans that won’t STFU about rape (I don’t CARE if it’s legitimate or not! Stop talking about it!)

And the number one thing that Republicans hate even more than President Obama’s second inauguration?

1. Mitt Romney

Joe Biden Vs. Paul Ryan: The 15 Best Tweets About the Vice Presidential Debate

Rolling Stone Politics

Vice President Joe Biden steamrolled Rep. Paul Ryan in the first vice-presidential debate last night, winning 50 percent to 31 percent in a CBS poll of uncommitted voters.

From the first mention of “malarkey” – Biden’s response to Ryan’s critique of the administration’s handling of Libya – the contest became such a laugher that the peanut gallery on Twitter began to sit back and enjoy the show.

Here are the 15 best tweets we saw:

1. Comedian Patton Oswalt’s read on the candidates’ early energy:

2. A former operative for Texas Governor Rick Perry takes in the GOP disaster unfolding on CNN:

3. Rolling Stone contributing editor Michael Hastings sums up the emerging consensus:

4. Game Change author John Heilemann declares this game altered:

5. Atlantic economics editor Matt O’Brien catches Ryan twisting in the wind:

Continued here…

Politico’s: Week in one liners: Mitt, Palin, Reid

Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin and Harry Reid are shown.  | AP Photos


The top quotes in politics …

“If I did, I would have to come after you with my ‘Men In Black’ flashlight and erase your memory.” — GOP White House hopeful Mitt Romney on the consequences of revealing his veep pick.

“The Commerce Committee, I’m telling you, is like being a mosquito in a nudist colony.” — Sen.John McCain on the power he wielded as chairman.

“Those walls were awful thin.” — Vice President Joe Biden cracking a joke about his childhood home.

“It’s—who the hell is Grover Norquist, anyway?” — Former President George H.W. Bush talking about taxes.

“To expand this program is not unlike adding a thousand people to the Titanic.” — Texas Gov.Rick Perry on Medicaid expansion.

“He has said before that he doesn’t want to have to light his hair on fire.” —  Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin talking about Romney.

“Burn them.” — Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on what we should do to the U.S. Olympic uniforms made in China.

Perry ‘proudly’ refuses health care to 1.2 million low-income Texans

Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R). Photo: Christopher Halloran / Shutterstock.com.

Between Governor Rick Scott of Florida and Governor Rick Perry of Texas, their governing is quite questionable to any reasonable person.

The Raw Story

In a statement published Monday morning, Texas Governor Rick Perry (R) “proudly” declared that he will decline to implement key tenets of the Affordable Care Act — a move that will see his state forgo an estimated $164 billion dollars in federal aid and leave over 1.2 million low-income Texans, who would have finally been eligible for health care, helpless and uninsured.

“This is a fiscally stupid decision on the part of Rick Perry,” Texas Democratic Party spokesperson Rebecca Acuña told Raw Story. “Texas would be one of the states that gets the most money from the federal government and the Medicaid expansion would have provided health care to more than a million Texans. It’s… It’s very sad that Rick Perry is willing to play politics with the health of Texans, and that’s exactly what this decision is.”

WATCH: Perry says Medicaid expansion like ‘adding 1,000 people to the Titanic’

With his announcement, Perry becomes the sixth governor to refuse implementing a key aspect of the Affordable Care Act: the Medicaid expansion and the state-based health care exchanges. Republican governors in Florida, South Carolina, Mississippi, Louisiana and Wisconsin have made similar decisions, but Texas is by far the biggest.

Perry would seem to be inviting a political free-for-all thanks to the relative size and power of the Texas hospital industry, which absorbed more than $4.6 billion in unpaid emergency medical costs in 2010. While not seeing it as a cure-all, Texas hospitals largely praised the Affordable Care Act for dramatically expanding health care options for poor people, who are ultimately paid for by others who carry their own insurance. Nearly 25 percent of Texans — 6.5 million people — do not have health insurance, including more than 1.2 million children, and the state’s health care system ranks last in the nation overall.

Continue reading here…