California

Congressmen Adam Schiff (California)And Jamie Raskin (Maryland): Two Courageous, Principled Legislators!

Two of the most outstanding, principled members of Congress serve on the January 6 House Committee investigating the US Capitol Insurrection, and both were involved in one or the other impeachments of Donald Trump in December 2019 and January 2021.

California Congressman Adam Schiff has served in Congress since 2001, and was the lead manager in the first Trump impeachment investigation in 2019, and is the Chair of the House Intelligence Committee. He represents part of the Los Angeles metropolitan area.

Maryland Congressman Jamie Raskin has served in Congress since 2017, and was the lead manager in the second Trump Impeachment investigation in January 2021. He represents Montgomery County, in the suburbs of Washington, DC.

Both men are courageous and totally decent, models of what all members of Congress should be like, but sadly, so many are not such!

Republican Party: From Joseph McCarthy In The 1950s To Kevin McCarthy In 2021!

The Republican Party has fallen from the time of such leaders as Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Dwight D. Eisenhower and innumerable decent Republican Senators and Governors over the years!

But there has always been an ugly side to the Republican Party since World War II, characterized by Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin in the 1950s and now the disgraceful leadership of House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy of California!

The first McCarthy set out to destroy the lives of Americans by labeling them “Reds” or “Pinkos”, and now the modern McCarthy, NOT a family member or relative, has set out to destroy any decency in the Republican Party by backing a criminal attempt of Donald Trump to come back to the Presidency, “by hook or by crook”, with emphasis on the latter, and by promoting the “Big Lie”!

Kevin McCarthy is willing to destroy any honest, decent Republican in his quest to be two heartbeats away from the Presidency, even though he personally condemned Donald Trump after the January 6, 2021 Insurrection at the US Capitol!

Joseph McCarthy was a horror and a villain in the 1950s, and now another McCarthy is a villain in the 2020s!

It is essential that Kevin McCarthy be required to testify in the House January 6 Committee investigation, and that his immoral, unethical behavior be called out, and that he should pay the price for undermining American democracy!

America survived the first McCarthy after nearly a five year nightmare, and America needs to survive the era of the modern demagogue, Kevin McCarthy!

Automatic Mail Ballots Should Be Sent By All States To All Voters As A National Law To Insure Voting Rights!

Nine states and Washington, DC send automatic mail ballots to all eligible voters who reside in their states.

These states include:

California
Colorado
Hawaii
Nevada
New Jersey
Oregon
Utah
Vermont
Washington State
Washington, DC

There is no viable reason why voters have to show up in person to vote, as long as they are registered and live in the state they reside in.

Such a system of mail in voting boosts voting, particularly of poor people, racial minorities, the disabled, members of the military, and the elderly.

Voting rights were guaranteed over time, and then added to by the Voting Rights Act of 1965, along with Constitutional amendments 15, 19, 23, 24, and 26, and so therefore, there should be ZERO boundaries for voting!

If we are to remain a democracy, this needs to become a national law that goes into effect by the Presidential Election of 2024, if not earlier with the Midterm Congressional Elections of 2022!

California Recall System A Total Mockery Of Democracy

In ten days, California, the largest state in population, and a strongly Democratic state since the mid 1990s, faces the possibility of a right wing talk show host, Larry Elder, potentially becoming Governor with less than 20 percent of the vote, kicking out first term Governor Gavin Newsom, if Newsom fails to get 50.01 percent of the vote in the upcoming recall election.

This is the second time this disastrous recall system has occurred in the 21st century, after Governor Gray Davis lost his control of the state of California to Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2003.

But Larry Elder is no Arnold Schwarzenegger, and represents an extremist right wing agenda, defying the views of a vast majority of Californians!

The recall system was set up under Governor Hiram Johnson of California in the early 20th century, but it is a mockery of democracy, despite the fact that it was thought to be otherwise a century ago.

Only two governors in American history have been successfully recalled, Davis; and North Dakota Governor Lynn Frazier in 1921, who lost the recall election by about 4,000 votes.

Nineteen states have a recall mechanism in their state constitutions, and 30 states allow local recall of office holders.

Cleveland, Ohio had a recall election of its mayor, Dennis Kucinich, in 1978, with Kucinich retaining his seat by a margin of 236 votes; and Wisconsin had a recall election of its Governor, Scott Walker, in 2012, with Walker retaining his seat by a margin of 170,000 votes.

Right now, polls seem to indicate that Newsom is likely to retain the governorship of California, but if he loses, it would have broad implications for the political future of the state and the nation!

The Disaster Of The US Senate

This author, scholar, and blogger has long studied and been fascinated by the institution of the US Senate, only second to the office of the American Presidency.

There have been many great US Senators, out of the nearly 2,000 who have served in that body.

But there have also been many disgraceful, disastrous US Senators, who have undermined the reputation of that institution, and too often, have stood in the way of progress and democracy.

This reality has become much more prevalent in recent years, as one party, the Republicans, have set out to promote only the interests of the wealthy and corporations, while utilizing the race card, to keep working class and lower middle class whites loyal to a party which promotes racism, nativism, misogyny, and promotion of Christian theology!

And as the population of the nation continues to grow, the undemocratic nature of the US Senate becomes ever more tragic and unrelenting.

The facts are that 15 states, with 38 million people, elect 30 Republican Senators dedicated to negativism and stalemate, while California, with 40 million residents, elects two Democratic Senators.

With the population trends of the nation moving forward, by two decades from now, 2040, close to 70 percent of the nation will be represented by 30 Senators, while the remaining Americans, disproportionately whiter, older, and more rural, will have 70 US Senators!

This reality will, long term, harm any possibility of major reforms and change, such as represented by the New Deal of Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Great Society of Lyndon B. Johnson!

The 2020 US Census Has Surprises, As Announced Today

It is ironic that this author wrote about the 2020 Census yesterday, not aware that precise information would be given out today, Monday.

And there are a few surprises.

The total population of the US is over 331 million people, up from about 309 million in 2010.

Texas will gain only two seats, not three, and Florida will gain one seat, not two.

Colorado, North Carolina, Oregon and Montana will gain one seat each.

Arizona, thought to be likely to gain a seat, will not do so.

New York loses one seat, but only because of a shortage of population by the small total of 89 people!

Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Illinois, California, and West Virginia will lose one seat for each state, with California losing representation for the first time ever!

Minnesota and Rhode Island, expected to lose one seat each, avoided such a loss.

So now, with Montana gaining a seat, there will only be 6 states with one statewide House member—Alaska, Delaware, Vermont, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming.

This is the second slowest population growth in US history, after the 1930s.

And the trend of the South and West gaining at the expense of the Northeast and Midwest continues as it has for many decades.

When Census Figures Come Out Later This Year, It Will Affect Multiple States

The 2020 Census figures will come out in a few months, and will affect multiple states in Congressional representation in 2022 and beyond, as well as the Electoral College.

A number of the larger populated states will continue to lose representation and electoral votes, as they have faced for several decades.

This includes New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois, and Michigan, but also California is likely to lose a Congressional seat and an electoral vote for the first time ever in America history. Also, West Virginia, Rhode Island and Minnesota are likely to lose a seat and an electoral vote.

The states which will gain include Texas, Florida, North Carolina, Arizona, Colorado, Oregon, and Montana, with Texas and Florida gaining the most.

Montana will move from one statewide House seat to two, while Rhode Island will move from two seats to one, so Rhode Island will join Vermont, Delaware, Alaska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming as the seven states that have only one House member for each state.

Kamala Harris Will Bring Uniqueness And Challenge In Her Role As Vice President

Kamala Harris will bring a sense of uniqueness and challenge to the status quo as she takes on the new role as Vice President of the United States on January 20, 2021.

As the first woman Vice President, and as a person of color with her African American and South Asian American heritage, Harris will draw attention just on that basis, but also with the reality that she may have to spend a lot of time in the US Senate, if the Democratic Party can win both open Georgia seats coming up for a vote on January 5.

If that occurs, she will organize the Senate as Presiding Officer, and make New York Senator Chuck Schumer the Majority Leader, and will have to break ties on many issues that may arise.

Even if a Democratic controlled Senate does not occur, she will have an extremely active role as Vice President, and will be utilized by President Biden in a way only that Biden himself had with Barack Obama, and Walter Mondale had with Jimmy Carter, and Al Gore had with Bill Clinton.

Harris will be combative, as she was as a California Senator for four years, and she will be constantly judged by the news media, and by opposition Republicans.

And with the strong likelihood that Joe Biden may retire after one term, she will certainly be the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination for the Presidency in 2024.

Believe it or not, the speculation over the next Presidential race has begun in earnest!

Final Projection On Congressional Elections Of 2020

With only five days to go until the Congressional Elections of 2020, this author and blogger wishes to indicate his final projection on what is likely to happen.

The House of Representatives will witness a major Democratic gain, with the estimate being about 15 seats, to a total of approximately 250 Democrats and 185 Republicans, giving the Democrats a wide margin for the next elections in 2022.

Democrats will gain seats in California, Florida, Illinois, Texas, Virginia and Pennsylvania, reaching about five more than I estimated on May 2 in my earlier projection, and a large number will be female and minority.

The US Senate will see a Democratic takeover, and have 53-55 seats. The Democrats will lose Alabama, regrettably, although Doug Jones is an exceptional Senator, the best Alabama has had in a long time, but Alabama is simply unwilling to appreciate a man as decent and accomplished as Doug Jones. If he does indeed lose his seat, however, Jones should be part of the Biden team, maybe as a cabinet member.

The Republicans will lose seven to nine seats, with assuredly the following seven gains and possibly two more:

Arizona, Mark Kelly over Martha McSally

Colorado, John Hickenlooper over Cory Gardner

Maine, Sara Gideon over Susan Collins

Georgia, Jon Ossoff over David Perdue

Montana, Steve Bullock over Steve Daines

North Carolina, Cal Cunningham over Thom Tillis

Iowa, Theresa Greenfield over Joni Ernst

Kansas, Barbara Bollier over Roger Marshall

South Carolina, Jaime Harrison over Lindsey Graham

Georgia’s other seat, presently held by Kelly Loeffler is more difficult to determine, and will not be settled until January.

Sadly, this author and blogger doubts the defeat of John Cornyn in Texas or Mitch McConnell in Kentucky, but sees the first seven listed above sure to go Blue, and Kansas and South Carolina possible, so therefore, with the loss of Alabama, but the gain of seven Republican seats, at least 53 Democrats, and the possibility of up to two more, for a grand total of 55 maximum!

Kamala Harris Main Arguments To Use Against Mike Pence In VP Debate On Wednesday Evening

Arguably the most important Vice Presidential debate since the first one in 1976 is taking place this Wednesday in Salt Lake City, Utah, when Vice President Mike Pence confronts California Senator Kamala Harris.

The possibility of a female Vice President in the next Presidential term heightens interest in this debate between a Vice President who has been unwilling to express his own views with his President, by every measure we have; and a Senator, who headed the Justice system of the state with one eighth of the American people residing, in California.

Kamala Harris needs to address major issues with Mike Pence, and if necessary, be persistent!

These include:

Why are you NOT asserting yourself in this COVID 19 crisis, and allowing Trump family members to run rampant over your responsibility to the nation to invoke the 25th Amendment?

Why are you not emphasizing masks, social distancing, and avoiding large rallies on your own part?

Why have you not condemned white nationalism groups, including QAnon and “Proud Boys”?

Why do you refuse to resist the policy of favoritism toward Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong Un, and other dictators, and the worsening relations of the nation with NATO, Canada, Japan, and South Korea?

Why do you show no concern about the immediate loss of health care for 20 million or more people, especially in the midst of a world wide pandemic?

How do you explain all of the failures of Trump, including on;

the Mexico wall:

no health care alternative and plans to gut Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security;

the inhumane treatment of immigrant children and their parents at the border;

the widespread corruption of Trump Cabinet officers and others;

Trump’s failure to match Barack Obama’s economic recovery; Trump’s constant attacks on veterans, Muslims, the disabled, and those who have died, including John McCain, and lack of respect for Ruth Bader Ginsburg;

and so many other shortcomings?

Harris will perform very well, with compassion, concern, empathy, decency, ethics, morality and persistence in asserting herself, and this will make her an excellent and principled Vice President under a President Joe Biden, who has the same character traits as she does.

And if circumstance puts Kamala Harris into the Oval Office, the nation will be well served and be in competent hands!