Archive for spine

VIDEO: Dear Democrats, please stick to these 8 principles


Acclaimed author, Berkeley professor, and Clinton-era Secretary of Labor Robert Reich lays out the what, why and how of the Fiscal "Cliff", the showdown in Congress that Republicans created to demand painful cuts in vital domestic programs in exchange for raising taxes on the top 2%. Learn the facts, and the best way out of this forced showdown.

Jobs come first. Prosperity, not austerity. Makes sense to me.

Oh, and it's a fiscal crossroads, not a cliff. At worst, it's a slope or a curb... or a hiccup. This is a self-created "crisis" that the GOP is trying to use in order to cut programs that are there for the health and welfare of American citizens who need assistance in order to, you know, live.


The first thing to know about the so-called "fiscal cliff" is that it's not a cliff—it's a choice. It's a choice between making the 1% richer at the expense of everyone else, or lifting up 100% of Americans. It's a choice between American prosperity and European austerity.

In this sharp new video, former Labor Secretary Robert Reich breaks down the fiscal choice in 2 minutes and 30 seconds—with pictures too. And he gives Democrats the inside scoop on how to fight and win this fiscal showdown for the middle class.


Senate Dems presenting a united front against new GOP reproductive-rights restrictions


I had to rub my eyes and do a double take. A few Democrats are growing spines, something more of them should be doing on a regular basis.

The topic: Abortion. The spines: Boxer, Gillibrand, Blumenthal, Franken, and Shaheen.

The newly empowered House Republicans are pushing ahead with a slate of anti-abortion legislation, and a few Senate Democrats have been fighting back hard for weeks.

Democratic Sens. Barbara Boxer (Calif.), Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.), Richard Blumenthal (Conn.), Al Franken (Minn.) and Jeanne Shaheen (N.H.) have promised recently to block the Republican agenda to limit abortion services and defund Planned Parenthood.

Asked by reporters Thursday if the Senate had the votes to defeat Pence’s battle against Planned Parenthood, Franken offered a one-word answer: “Yes." [...]

Democrats are accusing Republicans of abandoning an election mandate to focus on jobs and the economy. [...]

“I think this legislation has awoken the sleeping giant of my generation,” [Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.)] said. “It’s been complacent for so many years, taking the right to choose for granted, thinking it’s never under assault.”

Hey Boehner, where are the jobs?


Senate Democrats Crafting Democrat-Only Immigration Reform Plan


By GottaLaff

(Edgar Rios, left, and Marcos Gonzalez rally against the Arizona immigration bill before it was signed into law Friday.The Associated Press. Via)

Who do these Dems thing they are, leaders?

A trio of leading Democratic Senators on Wednesday began working on contingency plans for pushing a Democrat-only immigration reform bill if they are unable to convince Republicans to join the effort this year.

Why, one might mistake them for people with... spines:

An emerging immigration proposal by three Democratic senators calls for more federal enforcement agents and other border security-tightening benchmarks before illegal immigrants could become legal U.S. residents.

And who exactly are these spunky senators? Harry Reid of Nevada, Charles Schumer of New York, and Robert Menendez.

The benchmarks include additional Border Patrol officers and Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to combat smuggling; more ICE inspectors at work sites; an increased number of ICE officers assigned to detect fraudulent documents, and better ways to determine fakes; more personnel to check for contraband at ports of entry; additional resources to prosecute drug and human smugglers and illegal border crossers, and for deportations.

How could this possibly work? Targeting employers who hire undocumented workers? What? That's unheard of!

And there is nothing in there about racial profiling. They obviously didn't think this through.

Before the benchmarks are met, the Department of Homeland Security could begin registering, fingerprinting and screening illegal immigrants, and considering them for an interim legal status. That would allow them to work in the U.S. and travel outside it.

But... but... they didn't include anything about skin color or hair or shoes! This will never work. It's not nearly racist enough.

Oh, Rushpublics? Time to get the cots out. It's filibuster time.


Republicans Poised to Allow Senate Debate on Financial Overhaul Bill


By GottaLaff

All I've gotten so far is a news alert from Fox:

Republicans Poised to Allow Senate Debate on Financial Overhaul Bill

So forcing the Party of No to actually stand up and filibuster in front of the whole wide world worked. Remember this day, Dems.

UPDATE, via another e-mail:

WASHINGTON (AP) Republicans say they are ready to allow financial overhaul bill to be debated in Senate.


Sen. Richard Shelby, the top Republican on the Senate Banking committee, said he has assurances that Democrats will adjust his banking regulation bill to address concerns that it perpetuates bailouts. [...]

But McConnell and other Republican critics are now focusing their objections on Dodd's proposal to create a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau within the Federal Reserve.


"Democratic Congressman with guts is a mythological creature, like a unicorn."


By GottaLaff

When Democrats unify, they actually accomplish things. Imagine what it would be like if they unified and communicated effectively. What a concept.

How many times have you yelled back at the Tee Vee Machine, as if you were a surrogate for Congress Member X? How many times have you gnashed your teeth as Rushpublic after Rushpublic punditiot over talks a Democratic one?

How many times have you asked, "Why can't our side do that?"

How many times have you called a Dem "spineless"?

"People want a congressman who stands up and speaks out. People have come to think that a Democratic Congressman with guts is a mythological creature, like a unicorn."

-- Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL), quoted by the Plum Line.

I do believe in unicorns, I do believe in unicorns, I do I do I do. (Apologies to Bert Lahr)

[H]is appeal to Dem base voters resides in the fact that he’s not afraid of GOP attacks, that he doesn’t let Republicans own the debate, that he makes his case as aggressively as he can and hopes for the best — in short, that he fights. [...]

Rank and file Dems across the country have grown so fed up with watching their leadership cower in the face of GOP attacks that they reward this kind of feistiness when they see it — and even regard him as their Representative, Grayson says.

Reward the feisty, dump the wimps. Good idea. But first, we need to scrounge up a few more of the feisty.


Finally! Junior Democrats Want a Fight


By GottaLaff

Bravo! Kick some butt, "juniors":

Junior Senate Democrats are pushing their leaders to take a much more aggressive stance toward the Republican minority, arguing that their defeat of Sen. Jim Bunning’s (R-Ky.) unemployment benefits blockade this week proves a strategy of an active offense is far better than a passive defense.

Here is a list of those who have a-- What's it called again? Oh yeah-- spine:

Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and other members of the 2006 and 2008 classes... plus, Dick Durbin supports them. So does Harry Reid, and so do other newly spined Dems.

Who spiked their Geritol with courage juice? And hey, keep drinking:

The House and Senate Democratic caucuses have long been dominated by senior members of the party, but Whitehouse and his colleagues have the ear of Durbin, who was the leader of Thursday’s floor fight with Bunning.

A senior leadership aide praised Durbin’s work with the chamber’s backbenchers — not only in halting the filibuster, but in turning the controversy into a political liability for Republicans. [...]

Observers said the junior Senators were brought together by their relatively short terms in the Senate — and a shared sense that their party has allowed Republicans to bully the majority too often over the past three years.

A "sense" that they've been bullied? A "sense"? Gee, with powers of perception like that, the Dems are bound to stay in power.

And in another three years, they may discover that the GOP lies, too!