Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Lawmakers reintroduce ERA in wake of Supreme Court's Wal-Mart decision

It's about damn time this passed, only 3 states to go!!!


Democratic lawmakers are reintroducing an amendment that would ensure against gender discrimination in the U.S. in the wake of this week's controversial ruling by the Supreme Court.

Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) on Wednesday reintroduced the Equal Rights Amendment at an event outside the Capitol.

“The Equal Rights Amendment is still needed because the only way for women to achieve permanent equality in the U.S. is to write it into the Constitution,” Maloney said, according to a subsequent press release.

“Making women’s equality a constitutional right — after Congress passes and 38 states ratify the ERA — would place the United States on record, albeit more than 200 years late, that women are fully equal in the eyes of the law,” she said.
The reintroduction of the amendment follows Monday’s decision by the Supreme Court to shelve a major gender-discrimination lawsuit against Wal-Mart.

Tax rates and job creation in one graph

From Ezra Klein:

In theory, the GOP is so committed to resisting tax hikes because it’s so committed to creating jobs. “The fact is you can’t tax the very people that we expect to invest in the economy and create jobs,” says Speaker John Boehner. But Michael Linden’s chart comparing average annual job creation at different marginal tax rates begs to differ:

Monday, June 27, 2011

Bachmann confuses John Wayne with serial killer John Wayne Gacy



ABC's Sara Just and Russell Goldman report: While spending time in her hometown of Waterloo, Iowa to formally announce her candidacy Michele Bachmann misidentified her hometown as the birthplace of legendary actor John Wayne.

Wayne’s Iowan hometown is a landmark but it is in Winterset, Iowa, about three hours away from Bachmann’s hometown of Waterloo.

“What I want them to know is just like John Wayne is from Waterloo, Iowa, that’s the spirit I have too,” she told Fox News.

But as the Washington Times first noted, Waterloo is famous for its link to another John Wayne – John Wayne Gacy, the infamous serial killer of the 1970s. Gacy moved to Waterloo as a young adult, managed several fast food restaurants there and was charged with sexual assault there, his first criminal conviction.

From Pixelated Palace: Video Games are protected by the 1st Amendment!


Hey gang - Look, I'm sorry, I really never expected to have a reason to talk about anything relating to politics here. But this is rather large news. From my inbox:

Just moments ago, the Supreme Court in a 7 to 2 decision, has decided that, like music, books and movies, video games are First Amendment protected speech in the case Brown v. EMA. So many people took action signing the gamer petition and directly filing briefs with the Court.

The decision has been a long time coming, and we're so pleased by today's news. We're sure this isn't the end of the fight. One decision doesn't mean that we won't see elected officials attempted to test these new parameters. You better believe the ECA will continue to fight for the rights of the entertainment consumers and we hope you'll stand with us and add your voice.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

AFL-CIO urges recess appointment for Warren

Please appoint Elizabeth Warren, Mr. President! Her nomination has been held up long enough. Show some spine.


The AFL-CIO is calling for a recess appointment of Elizabeth Warren as the head of the fledgling Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

In an email sent to the labor federation’s activists Thursday, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka asked them to urge President Obama to appoint Warren to the head of the agency.

“No matter who gets the recess appointment of President Obama, Republicans have made it clear they’ll scream and holler. This reflects a sorry state in our politics — but it’s also a historic opportunity to recess appoint Elizabeth Warren, who’s already shown as acting director of the CFPB that she’s a true champion for working families,” Trumka wrote in the email. “Urge President Obama to recess appoint Elizabeth Warren — who will truly stand up for consumers.”

At the moment, Warren is a special adviser to the bureau, which was created by the Dodd-Frank financial services reform bill that passed last year. Warren, seen as a liberal champion who has been tough on Wall Street, has come under heavy criticism from Republican lawmakers.

Last month, 44 GOP senators said they would filibuster any nominee to head up the agency unless changes were made to the bureau. That has been countered by a letter from 89 House Democrats sent to Obama last week calling for a recess appointment of Warren as head of the bureau.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Mitt Romney announced 2012 bid

Good luck Willard, you are going to need it.


As Mitt Romney makes it official, it appears to be all about the economy and about New Hampshire. But the man who many considered the early front-runner in the race for the GOP presidential nomination will have to share the spotlight on the day he officially jumps in the race.

The former Massachusetts governor and 2008 Republican presidential candidate will formally announce his second bid for the White House, declaring his candidacy at an event Thursday in New Hampshire, the state that holds the first primary in the presidential caucus and primary calendar.

Romney will sharply criticize President Barack Obama over the state of the economy, saying "Barack Obama has failed America."

According to excerpts of his speech released in advance by his campaign, Romney will attack Obama for expanding the role of the federal government, adding, "we are only inches away from ceasing to be a free market economy. I will cap federal spending at 20 percent or less of the GDP and finally, finally balance the budget."

Charlie Bass vs. Medicare

GOP Can’t Handle The Truth: Taxes Are Lower Under Obama Than Reagan

The Reagan mythology has a long reach.


President Obama met with House Republicans today at the White House to discuss ways to move forward on negotiations regarding the nation’s debt ceiling and the budget. During the discussion, talk evidently turned to taxes, and when Obama noted that taxes today are lower than they were under President Reagan, the GOP, according to The Hill, “engaged in a lot of ‘eye-rolling’“:

Republicans attending a White House meeting on Wednesday didn’t take kindly to President Obama telling them tax rates were higher during the Reagan administration. GOP members engaged in a lot of “eye-rolling,” according to a member who was on hand to hear Obama, who invited House Republicans to the White House for discussions on the debt ceiling. [...]

“[The President] made a comment like the tax rate is the lightest, even more than (under former President) Reagan,” Rep. Lee Terry (R-Neb.) told The Hill following the meeting. House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) joked that during the meeting, “We learned we had the lowest tax rates in history … lower than Reagan!”

That House Republicans find this preposterous is symptomatic of the hold Reagan mythology has over them. After all, for seven of Reagan’s eight years in office, the top tax rate was higher than the current 35 percent. In six of those years, it was 50 percent or more. And every year that Regan was in office, the bottom tax bracket was higher than the current ten percent.

For a family of four, the “average income tax rate under Reagan in 1983 was 11.06 percent. Under Clinton in 1992, it was 9.18 percent. And under Obama in 2010, it was 4.68 percent.” During Reagan’s time, income tax revenue ranged from 7.8 to 9.4 percent of GDP. Last year, it was 6.2 percent and is not projected to climb back to 9 percent until 2016. In fact, in 2009, Americans paid their lowest taxes in 60 years.