Senator Elizabeth Warren was in Minnesota last weekend to support Senator Al Franken. She gave a speech at the 2014 Humphrey-Mondale Dinner, and what a speech it was! Below is a video of some excerpts.
It was her first time speaking at a major Democratic Party state dinner, and she proceeded to make mince meat out of Paul Ryan, Ted Cruz, the Tea Party and the national GOP.
Elizabeth Warren takes on Paul Ryan and Ted Cruz at the 2014 Minnesota DFL Humphrey-Mondale Dinner, her first state Democratic Party dinner.
They voted to repeal Obamacare forty-seven times! Forty-seven times?! I know the Republicans don't have a lot of other ideas to talk about, but wow! Forty-seven times?!?
We get it, guys, you like to repeal things. We got it forty-six votes ago.
This whole thing is mindless. Cruz said there's no point in even looking at a major new proposal or piece of legislation that has been put forward by Democrats. So if a proposal has President Obama's name on it, or Chris Dodd or Barney Frank's name on it, he votes "no." If the proposal actually gets passed into law, Cruz will be there to lead the tea party chant: "Repeal. Repeal. Repeal. Repeal."
I sometimes think that if Ted Cruz had been around for the Declaration of Independence, he would have tried to repeal it, because Jefferson was a Democrat. If he'd been around for the Federalist Papers, he would have tried to toss those out too, because Madison spent too much time talking to Jefferson. And don't even get Ted Cruz started on the Humphrey-Mondale Dinner. As we speak, he's off somewhere strategizing on how to repeal the salad course!
Maybe if Paul Ryan wants to instill a culture of hard work, he should start with Ted Cruz and his fellow Republicans and get them to actually look at our proposals. Who knows? Maybe if they weren't determined to say, "No, no, no," we could build a bridge... and I mean that literally. Maybe we could build some of the things we need to build in this country.
Senator Elizabeth Warren is worried about our very corporate Supreme Court. She's worried that they will rule in favor of Hobby Lobby, just as they decided in favor of Citizens United. And that decision has been a disaster.
To quote one of my favorite analysts, Dahlia Lithwick at Slate, SCOTUS will rule on "whether the religious rights of a for-profit corporate entity allow it to refuse to provide for employees insurance that would include certain forms of birth control. In so doing, the court may now be forced to reckon with the question of whether the same corporate personhood that includes the right to free speech also encompasses rights to religious conscience. In other words, Corporate Personhood is back! And this time, it’s got God on its side."
Case by case, this Supreme Court is, indeed, out to legalize corporate personhood. Conservative extremists have spent decades shaking their political pom poms to cheer zygote personhood. What next, hypocrisy personhood? But when it comes to actual people personhood, American citizen personhood, voting rights personhood, women's and gay rights personhood, they scurry off to Faux ChristianLand where Fox News [sic] feeds them their next "my belief system trumps reality" talking points.
And now these same zealots are (incredibly) being given credibility by the highest court in the U.S.A.
The following email from Senator Warren landed in my inbox today. As is made painfully obvious by K.C. Boyd's weekly "Upchucks" guest posts here at TPC, the separation of church and state is narrowing daily. This growing trend is serious and is endangering our dwindling democracy. We need to organize our voices and protest immediately, loudly, clearly, and constantly.
Bolding is mine:
Hobby Lobby doesn't want to cover its employees' birth control on company insurance plans. In fact, they're so outraged about women having access to birth control that they've taken the issue all the way to the Supreme Court.
I cannot believe that we live in a world where we would even consider letting some big corporation deny the women who work for it access to the basic medical tests, treatments or prescriptions that they need based on vague moral objections.
But here's the scary thing: With the judges we've got on the Supreme Court, Hobby Lobby might actually win.
The current Supreme Court has headed in a very scary direction.
Recently, three well-respected legal scholars examined almost 20,000 Supreme Court cases from the last 65 years. They found that the five conservative justices currently sitting on the Supreme Court are in the top 10 most pro-corporate justices in more than half a century.
And Justices Samuel Alito and John Roberts? They were number one and number two.
Take a look at the win rate of the national Chamber of Commerce cases before the Supreme Court. According to the Constitutional Accountability Center, the Chamber was winning 43% of the cases in participated in during the later years of the Burger Court, but that shifted to a 56% win-rate under the Rehnquist Court, and then a 70% win-rate with the Roberts Court.
Follow these pro-corporate trends to their logical conclusion, and pretty soon you'll have a Supreme Court that is a wholly owned subsidiary of big business.
Birth control is at risk in today's case, but we also need to worry about a lot more.
In Citizens United, the Supreme Court unleashed a wave of corporate spending to game the political system and drown the voices of middle class families.
And right now, the Supreme Court is considering McCutcheon v. FEC, a case that could mean the end of campaign contribution limits – allowing the big guys to buy even more influence in Washington.
Republicans may prefer a rigged court that gives their corporate friends and their armies of lawyers and lobbyists every advantage. But that's not the job of judges. Judges don't sit on the bench to hand out favors to their political friends.
On days like today, it matters who is sitting on the Supreme Court. It matters that we have a President who appoints fair and impartial judges to our courts, and it matters that we have a Senate who approves them.
We're in this fight because we believe that we don't run this country for corporations – we run it for people.
Thank you for being a part of this,
There is a potential Democratic ticket that's being floated around that has Hillary Clinton nervous. Not because she doesn't think that she can win the general election if she gets the nomination, she fears the primary battle. A really hard fought primary battle.
If you flip back to 2006, Hillary was, as she is now, considered to be a shoo-in for the nomination. It was a done deal. Her inaugural dinner menu was already being planned. And we all know how that turned out for her. The bruising primary battles with Barack Obama showed she had backbone and strength. She was a good candidate. Obama was better, plain and simple.
Now we're approaching 8 years from her prior "inevitability." And whispers in the wind are that there's someone who might run who could conceivably capture the Democratic nomination. And coupled with his name is a running mate. Someone who's most compatible and would give the Democrats a dream ticket without the Clinton baggage.
The "potential candidate" is not a Democrat. He is an Independent. And his name is Senator Bernie Sanders (I - Vermont).
Take a moment to digest this. TIME MAGAZINE has:
Sanders, who is the longest-serving Independent in congressional history, would have to officially register as a Democrat before he could run in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary. But he says he hasn't yet made up his mind for sure if he’ll run, and he has time yet. One thing he is sure of: He’d make a better President than Hillary Clinton.
You may ask who or why? Anyone in the political circles, Republican or Democrat, knows that Bernie is a man who speaks his mind and is filled with common sense more that a a need to fall in line with political dogma from either party. He's got America on his mind -- something the two major parties seem to clash over time after time -- and with disastrous results. Bernie just calls it as he sees it. And he sees it with compassion and practicality.
Sanders caucuses with the Democrats so his pick wouldn't be a far-fetched bit of chicanery. His reason for running he puts this way:
Clinton, he says, “is a very, very intelligent person, no question about it. But, I don’t know what her political future is, whether she’s going to run. I don’t know what she’s going to say. But, if you talk about the need for a political revolution in America, it’s fair to say that Secretary Clinton probably will not be one of the more active people.”
Senator Sanders knows what he's talking about. Clinton is a really well-rounded pick, but she's very willing to make compromise at the expense of Democratic policy. She's worldly, bright, articulate and an insider's insider. Is that what we want though? No one is more beholden to big money than the Clintons -- on either party's radar.
Here's the kicker to the Sander's potential for running. It paves the way for Senator Elizabeth Warren to run as Veep. If Hillary runs, the Dems won't put up an all-female ticket. Sad but true. And nobody, and I mean nobody comes close to standing up for consumers and against Wall Street's onerous practices than EW. In second place would be Bernie S. Together America wins.
Time will tell, but there's more and more chatter. Despite it being an all-New England ticket, it's most formidable. It's early and with Hillary playing games as she did in 2006 hemming and hawing about her running, she may be tricking herself once again. This time there's a potential juggernaut ready to take her on. If she announces she's running and Bernie still steps to the plate, look for one of the most amazing presidential primaries in the last hundred years.
Unlike the Republicans who have nobody running who can win the general election, the Democrats could have two major players, each qualified and each good for America. And if Democrats go with the fresher face of Bernie Sanders, he's less controversial, he's brilliant and he's got Elizabeth Warren at his side to groom for the Presidency after Bernie's 8 years.
Don't say I didn't warn ya!
Well, when it comes to consumer protections and forward thinking plans on how to make life better for all of us, there's now really only one voice. It's not Obama. It's not Boehner. It's not even a man. It's a woman who's becoming more a more of a hero every day to Democrats and Independents, and a seemingly unstoppable force against Republicans. She's Elizabeth Warren. Not even Hillary Clinton scares the GOP as much as she does.
She's been fighting Wall Street for us, trying to keep down runaway profits that don't, as the Republicans like to say, "trickle down" to working-class people. The GOP call them "job creators," but in reality they are money grabbers and thieves. Simon Legrees.
Yesterday EW, as the Senator is being called these days, announced a proposed bill to help the underwater fiscal lives of recent graduates of colleges and universities. And she's also allowing millionaires to take advantage of their preferential financial status and give a little back to those starting out, those who will someday lead these big financial institution and raise up civilization as a whole.
Her plan is quite simple -- a surtax -- yes a tax -- on earnings over $1Million. It's a modification to the Buffet rule. If you never heard of the Buffet rule, it that's because Republicans vetoed it. Think Progress:
The Buffet rule is named after billionaire Warren Buffet and would establish a minimum tax on income in excess of $1 million. The measure, which never got out of Congress, raises approximately $50 billion in revenue and ensures that millionaires do not pay lower tax rates than middle-class families.
Right now the government gives tax breaks to the highest earners but puts the burden on the lower wage earners. Millionaires and billionaires, pay lower taxes, if they even pay any, than middle class workers.
Warren's proposed bill will put those surtaxed revenues toward student loans which make trillions for the US treasure coffers. The onerous and usurious student loan rates in effect up until last year's reduction (which EW was a moving force in getting passed) are still in force. Unless they can be refinanced to current rates (not allowed under current rules), the older loans are going into default and students are crumbling under their weight. All Warren wants is to help people pay back the money they borrowed at today's lower rates, giving graduates more of a fighting chance to make it. It's win-win for America and our future. If you can refinance a house or a car, why not a student loan?
If you want to hear the future voice of America, Senator Warren of Massachusetts is the voice we need to listen to.
Well, it's only 2014 and two full years away from the next presidential election. The Democrats seem to have their heir (Hillary Clinton) and their spare (Joe Biden). Things are a bit more cloudy on the Republican side.
They don't have any favorites for the top job yet -- lots of possibles and potentials, but that's about it -- no clear front runner. Their current list of damaged goods includes the likes of: Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Chris Christie, Ted Cruz, Scott Walker, Mike Pence, Jeb Bush and perennial candidate Mitt Romney. (Don't count him out just yet. He has the field staff, organization and donor lists. He's also starting to make more and more public appearances and statements).
But one thing there does seem to be on the GOP side. Despite being unsettled for the top job, POTUS, there's an almost certainty for the number two slot. It's Kelly Ayotte.
Republican strategist and former McCain presidential campaign manager Steve Schmidt revealed his party's thoughts recently in The Daily Beast:
Ayotte is also one of the only female GOP top personalities that could counter a Democratic ticket with Hillary Clinton at its top, and at a time when the Republican party has been reeling from a number of scandals that have left the party vulnerable to the accusation that they are not savvy at courting the women’s vote.
“Ayotte could turn the ‘war on women’ narrative into a punch line,” said Schmidt. “In the category of those really talented women who can really break into the next level, I think Kelly Ayotte stands out. She has a lot of skills. There's no on-the-job training and she’s clears [sic] that hurdle.”
Well, it looks like we'll have another Sarah Palin running on the GOP ticket only this time she'll be the Scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz, after she got a brain. Perhaps.
So the Republicans think they have the answer to their women problem. If that was really the case, why aren't they talking about her for the top dog's chair? After all, she's as good or better than any of the male potential candidates. Wouldn't it be something if two women were heading the major tickets? I think so. But that, of course would mean the GOP's leader would be a woman, and I'm not sure the party is ready to accept that yet.
If this is really to be the best possible race, the Dems should go with a totally female ticket - Clinton/Warren. Together they'd be unstoppable.
MSNBC's Krystal Ball had some strong insight into the future of the Democratic Party yesterday on The Cycle. She devoted three minutes of very honest, contemporary and deeply thought-out assessment of her party's future - 2016- and whether or not Hillary Clinton is the answer. I was quite surprised, because she precisely stated my feelings which I've expounded numerous times on The Political Carnival. It's as if she were channeling my thoughts. She said them much more succinctly and eloquently than I could have, but I hope you'll watch this. It's not long, but it's eye-opening.
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Kuwaiti Citizen Detained at Guantanamo since 2002
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