Joe Manchin of West Virginia

Abortion Rights Fails In US Senate, And So Called”Supporters” Collins And Murkowski Bail!

Abortion Rights has failed in the US Senate, by a vote of 49-51, not surprising, but two so called “supporters”, Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, bailed on the legislation on technical grounds, along with Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia!

Basically, both Senators showed they talk the talk but do not walk the walk.

So it seems certain that women will lose their rights to their own bodies’s autonomy, and there will be botched abortions and suicides rapidly increasing!

This is extremely tragic as women’s rights are going backwards, and yet, at this point, nothing can be done to stop it, unless by miracle, the Supreme Court backs away from its draft decision from February.

This would require Chief Justice John Roberts to influence at least one of the five Justices in the majority, likely either Brett Kavanaugh or Amy Coney Barrett, to join him and the three Democratic appointments on the Court.

But there is no way to know if Roberts might in the end join the five other conservatives, and make the final vote in June 6-3 instead of 5-4!

US Senate Races Crucial For Both Democrats And Republicans In 2022

As in every even year, the US Senate faces one third of its membership facing election contests this November.

Six Senators are retiring, five Republican (Richard Shelby of Alabama, Roy Blunt of Missouri, Richard Burr of North Carolina, Rob Portman of Ohio, Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania), and one Democrat (Patrick Leahy of Vermont).

Besides these six open seats, 28 other Senators are running for reelection, with a total of 20 Republican seats up, and 14 Democrats.

This should give the Democrats the advantage in gaining seats, and if even one seat is added, the Democrats will have control, and if two seats are gained, the unreliability of Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia will not have as much impact and influence in holding up Democratic Party goals for legislation.

On the other hand, if the Republicans gain just one seat, Mitch McConnell becomes Majority Leader, and this will hamper the remainder of the Joe Biden Presidency in this term.

The best hopes for the Democrats are to win Ohio with Congressman Tim Ryan, who was a Presidential contender in 2020; North Carolina; Pennsylvania; Wisconsin; and Florida, where Marco Rubio faces challenge from Congresswoman Val Demings.

THe best hopes for the Republicans are to win Arizona, where Mark Kelly faces a tough fight; Georgia, where Reverend Ralphael Warnock has a serious challenge; Nevada, where Catherine Cortez Masto has a close race; and New Hampshire, where Maggie Hassan has a challenging race.

Joe Manchin May Have Destroyed The “Build Back Better” Legislation Altogether!

West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin may have destroyed the “Build Back Better” legislation altogether.

Manchin went on Fox News Channel on Sunday to say that he cannot accept the legislation, after months of toying with different versions.

This caused an appropriately harsh reaction from President Biden’s press secretary, Jen Psaki, and many members of the Democratic Party in both houses of Congress.

It is hoped that some aspects of the proposed legisation can be salvaged separately, but sadly, this is the result of having a 50-50 Senate, and if Manchin were to become a Republican, as some suggest, it would simply put the Republicans in total control under Mitch McConnell!

Voting Rights Takes Precedent Over The “Build Back Better” Bill!

A major aim of the Biden Presidency has been to promote “social infrastructure” through the “Build Back Better” legislation.

However, it has been tied up in process due to the opposition of Senators Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema Of Arizona, and it is now clear that it cannot be accomplished before the end of this year, sadly.

But the aim now is to promote the guarantee of Voting Rights, preventing Republicans from destroying the suffrage rights of millions of Americans, so the push is on to make certain that the basic and fundamental right to vote is insured.

It is a crucial battle for the survival of democracy, and it can be accomplished by “reconcilation”, as long as there are 50 votes, and it is hoped possibly one or two Republican Senators, such as Lisa Murkowski of Alaska or Susan Collins of Maine, will cross the aisle if it determines the basic prevention of the loss of voting rights!

Fingers are crossed that this can be accomplished!

Right Wing Propaganda Attempts To Portray Joe Biden And Kamala Harris As Disasters, When Much Has Been Accomplished!

Right Wing propaganda, whether the Republican Party, Fox News Channel, OANN, Newsmax, or various interest groups that promote domestic terrorism and white supremacy, is working incessantly to portray President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris as disasters.

This is all designed to advance the cause of a Republican Congress and state government domination by partisan gerrymandering, as well as whitewash and avoiding responsibility for support of the “Big Lie” of Donald Trump and his criminal backers who incited the January 6, 2021 Insurrection on the US Capitol!

One would think that Donald Trump and Mike Pence accomplished so much in office that was positive for the American people and nation, when exactly the opposite is the truth!

Trump did great harm in so many areas of domestic and foreign policy, and the only “winner” was the extremely wealthy, who gained a massive tax cut which added greatly to the national debt, without improving the daily lives of the American people!

Mike Pence proved how much of a sycophant he was, a person supposedly “religious”, “devout”, “moral and ethical”, when he was simply a total hypocrite, with his promotion of hatred, division, and narrow mindedness. He had to be convinced by, of all people, former Vice President Dan Quayle, to follow the Constitution on January 6, 2021, and uphold the Electoral College vote that Joe Biden had won the Presidency.

Pence will go down in history as one of the absolutely worst, most disgraceful Vice Presidents in American history!

Meanwhile, Joe Biden has accomplished a great deal, including providing relief to the American economy through the American Rescue Plan, a total of $1.9 trillion in the spring of 2021. The Physical Infrastructure legislation, providing $1.2 trillion to rebuild roads, bridges, airports rail systems, broadband, environmental cleanup, and electric vehicle, is being signed into law today by President Biden.

Also, Biden has changed the harsh policy toward refugees promoted by Trump, and cracked down on the abuses of Immigration and Customs Enforcement toward innocent children.

Additionally, Biden returned America to the Paris Climate Accords, and reversed the action of Trump cutting down the Bears Ear National Monument and the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, and he restored protection of the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument.

Biden has taken strong action on vaccinations and masking, and brought about a commitment to combating the COVID 19 Pandemic, after Trump minimized the crisis and promoted false solutions. And Biden has not allowed renegade governors Ron DeSantis of Florida and Greg Abbott to stop necessary action to protect the American people during this pandemic!

The “Build Back Better” Social Infrastructure legislation, held up by moderate Democrats, hopefully will be accomplished soon, as it should be, but with Senators Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema or Arizona, and some in the House of Representatives causing problems, no certainty at this moment, but important for the future of both Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, and the nation at large.

Biden withdrew US military forces from Afghanistan, an action that was promoted by Donald Trump, who wanted to remove them in May 2021, rather than the actual time frame of August 2021. It was a tough decision, but America had been in Afghanistan for 20 years, and most Americans knew it was time to leave.

The NATO nations and others have seen a massive change in American foreign policy by Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, restoring our good relations with our allies.

Kamala Harris has been more in the background, but Vice Presidents historically have not been in the forefront so early in an administration, and if one looks back at Mike Pence, for instance, who recalls him playing a leading role in the first year of Donald Trump’s Presidency, or really ever?

This negative portrayal of Harris simply is the reaction of having a mixed race woman a heartbeat away from the Presidency, when she has excellent credentials, were she to have to assume the Presidency!

Desire Vs Reality: Democrats At This Point Must Settle For Half Social Infrastructure Ambitions!

Sadly, it is now clear that Joe Biden and progressive Democrats have no choice to but accept a Social Infrastructure bill worth about half of the originally planned $3.5 trillion to help make life better for everyday Americans.

This author and scholar is furious about the impact of West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin and Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema, as well as some moderate Democrats in the House of Representatives.

But this is the reality when we have an evenly divided US Senate and a House of Representatives with a narrow margin of six votes.

But consider that IF Georgia had not elected two Democratic Senators in January—Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff–the first elected African American and first Jewish senators in Georgia history—the Republicans would be running the Senate under Mitch McConnell.

So the goal now is to accomplish what can be done, and try to work in the first half of 2022 for more, or make it the key campaign issue for the Congressional elections coming up next November.

Right now, celebrating what can be done, which advances the American nation, is still a major positive for Democrats, and it still will be the major domestic initiative, along with the financial assistance to deal with the COVID 19 Pandemic, that we have seen since Lyndon B. Johnson’s Great Society nearly sixty years ago.

So let us be happy for what can be done, and work to accomplish more Democratic Senators in the midterms, as there are more Republican seats up for election, and five Republicans are leaving, and more extreme nominees are likely, which, hopefully, will cause a major Democratic edge, despite historical trends, as this is a crisis situation for American democracy!

Democrats In Disarray; Progressives Vs. Moderates—What Is The Future Of “Social Infrastructure”?

It now seems clear that the progressive vs moderate battle in the Democratic Party is making the party look in disarray.

One must realize that with a 50-50 Senate and only a 6 vote margin in the House, this is not the time of Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal, or the time of Lyndon B. Johnson and the Great Society.

If Georgia’s two Senate seats had not been won in a runoff in January 2021, the opposition Republicans would be in charge, and nothing that the Democrats want would be occurring, or have the potential of occurring.

And as much as there is anger toward West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin and Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema, it would not work to attack them to the point where either might consider switching parties.

So the future of “Social Infrastructure” now seems essential to pare down from the proposed $3.5 trillion over 10 years to, more likely, a figure in the $2 trillion level.

This means some of the programs proposed will have to go by the wayside or be cut back in coverage or years, an unavoidable situation, highly regrettable, but reality must set in, sadly!

The Ultimate Week Of Reckoning For Joe Biden And The Democratic Party Future

President Joe Biden has been in office a week more than eight months, and he has had high public opinion ratings until the last month, with so many issues clashing, including the withdrawal from Afghanistan; the continuing COVID-19 Pandemic debate; and the problems at the Mexico border.

So right now, Biden is backed by only 43 percent in some polls, and the pressure is on to move ahead this week on the domestic policy agenda.

This will be seen as the ultimate week of reckoning for Joe Biden and the Democratic Party future, as debate begins on the Physical Infrastructure bill which passed the Senate with a bipartisan support of 69-30 on August 10, and the House of Representatives will vote on it this week.

The proposed “Social Infrastructure” bill, which would be the most expanded reform program since the Great Society of Lyndon B. Johnson and the New Deal of Franklin D. Roosevelt is more complicated. Progressive Democrats and moderate Democrats are fighting over the price tag of $3.5 trillion over ten years, and the issue also of gaining the support of Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Senator Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, who are resisting modifying the filibuster to accomplish the legislation.

The price tag might have to be lowered substantially, and the issue of the order of voting for the two pieces of legislation is also holding up progress, as moderates want the bipartisan bill passed now, and the more progressive “Social Infrastructure” bill to be passed later, while progressives in the party want passage of both at the same time.

Time To Make Clear That “Social Infrastructure” Bill Is Over TEN Years, NOT One Year, And Essential!

It is very disconcerting to see West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema, and some moderate Democrats in the House of Representatives, make clear their opposition to the proposed $3.5 trillion “Social Infrastructure” legislation, while supporting the $1 trillion “Physical Infrastructure” bill that has bipartisan support in the Senate.

The “Physical Infrastructure” bill covers roads, bridges, airports, rails, water systems, clean drinking water, cleaning the environment, and high speed internet access, and is urgently needed, gaining a 69-30 bipartisan vote in the Senate.

But the “Social Infrastructure” bill, over TEN years, NOT one, would cover many urgent matters, including:

Expansion of Child Tax Credits and establishment of paid family and medical leave
Expansion of Medicare to include dental, hearing, and vision benefits and possibly lower the Medicare age from 65 to 60
Funding for Elder Care and Disabled Care in their homes
Funding for Child Care so young children would have two years of publicly funded pre-Kindergarten Education
Funding for two years of Community College Education for students after high school
Funding for Climate Change legislation and promotion of electric vehicles
Provisions to lower the price of prescription drugs
Infrastructure investment for Native American communities
Increase in taxes on wealthy people and corporations, which in many cases pay ZERO taxes right now
Bolstering the Internal Revenue Service’s staff and enforcement resources to do its job of raising tax collection

If passed into law, it would be the biggest expansion of the social safety net since the Great Society of Lyndon B. Johnson in the 1960s!

The lie that is being spread is that the $3.5 trillion bill is all in one year, when it is actually over ten years, or $350 billion per year.

Meanwhile, the defense budget, bloated with lots of projects that are not needed but bolstering the profits of defense corporations which pay bribes to get their programs funded, is $700 billion per year, double the amount for the infrastructure bill.

This means that defense over the next ten years would be 7 TRILLION, double the social spending, but of course, defense is presented as one year at a time, while social reforms are portrayed as all at once, when it is totally false!

It is urgent that both pieces of legislation pass, and not be derailed by lies and deception. Government for all the people, not just the privileged, is long overdue!

The Fight For National Voting Rights Is Intense!

Texas Democrats are in Washington, DC as they work to prevent the state legislature from passing massive limitations on voting rights.

Many Republican states have done or are doing the same, promoting the return of “Jim Crow” laws, as if the Voting Rights Act of 1965 under Lyndon B. Johnson had not become law six decades ago!

But the disgraceful right wing Supreme Court has done great harm to that signature law, and has complicated the fight to restore and preserve national voting rights.

So the Democrats, with their razor thin majority MUST push to end the filibuster, at least for the basic right to vote, and Joe Biden gave a speech in that regard today in Philadelphia.

Pressure must be brought against Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona to do the right thing, as otherwise, what is the point of having a majority?