Republican Party

The 114th Congress Anti Science Climate Denier Caucus: An Unmitigated Disaster!

The Republican 114th Congress is, sadly, one of a majority of anti science climate deniers, at a shocking level.

Twelve states have a majority of their Congressional delegation, sometimes including some Democrats, who are anti science, anti evolution and anti climate change. These states include West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, Alabama, Iowa, Oklahoma, North Dakota, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, and Alaska.

All states have at least 25 percent anti science climate deniers, except the following: Massachusetts, Vermont, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Delaware, South Dakota, Oregon, and Hawaii.

This is a terrible omen for the future, as putting our heads in the sand on climate change will insure a worse life for our children and grandchildren.

But that does not phase Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio and others who deny, deny, deny to the point where one wants to scream, based on the available evidence.

And Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe is the most vehement climate change denier, and cannot be reasoned with at all!

But President Barack Obama is doing what he can, including rejecting the Keystone XL Pipeline!

Republicans Declare War On National Parks: Theodore Roosevelt, Gifford Pinchot, And Others Turning Over In Their Graves!

It is hard to conceive, but the 2015 Republican Party has declared war on America’s national park system, wishing to allow uranium mining in the Grand Canyon, and other kinds of natural resource exploitation in our national treasure, our public lands!

A bill has been introduced to prevent any future President, along with President Barack Obama, to create any more national parks, a bill which will gain the Presidential veto if it were to pass both houses!

Fortunately, there would be no possibility of a two thirds override of the Presidential veto, as any such banning of additional national parks would be a war on the environment, and a sin against nature!

This attack on nature and conservation would cause the turning over in their graves of President Theodore Roosevelt, National Forestry Service head Gifford Pinchot (under the TR Presidency), as well as a multitude of Republicans similar to those two party members, as well as Democrats, and all decent, caring citizens. It would also cause dismay among Presidents, including Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter, and Bill Clinton, all who added greatly to our national parks.

Barack Obama is adding wide swaths of the Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge to the national parks, even with opposition from Alaska politicians, including Senator Lisa Murkowksi, who is catering to the oil and gas interests over preserving the last great area of untouched nature.

This is yet another reason why no Republican can be allowed to be elected President, as with a Republican controlled Congress, we would be on the precipice of a disaster of massive proportions, and that cannot be allowed to occur!

“Swing” States Becoming Fewer Every Election: Locking In Electoral Votes!

The number of “Swing” states in a Presidential election are becoming fewer in each four year cycle, and locking in the Electoral College outcome, to a much greater extent than ever before.

At this point, for the 2016 Presidential Election, it can be said there are ONLY ten states that are truly up for grabs, barring some unforeseen events:

These states are:
Florida
Ohio
Virginia
North Carolina
New Hampshire
Iowa
Indiana
Colorado
New Mexico
Nevada

Even these ten states are not truly ten, as North Carolina for now is more likely to go Republican; New Hampshire and Iowa are more likely to go Democratic; Indiana is more likely to go Republican; and New Mexico is almost certainly Democratic!

So only Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Colorado, and Nevada are truly “swing’ states for 2016, and most of the campaigning in the general election period will be in those five states, plus the other five more certain to be in one political camp over the other.

The Northeast and New England, with the exception of New Hampshire, are locked up for the Democrats, as are the Upper Midwest and Illinois, and the three Pacific Coast states and Hawaii!

The Great Plains states, the Mountain West except for the three states mentioned above, and the South, with the exceptions of the three states mentioned above, and West Virginia, Kentucky, Missouri, and Alaska seem locked up for the Republicans, making for more states than the Democrats, but many of them low electoral vote states. And when Texas and Georgia evolve, with more Hispanic-Latino voters in the next decade, the Electoral College will be locked up for the Democrats for the long haul, unless the GOP can convince many states’ voters to swing over from the Democrats, highly unlikely!

The move to allow states to vote by congressional district, as is so in Nebraska and Maine in theory, if it spreads to major states, such as Pennsylvania, where it has been proposed, COULD change the whole dynamic, and make for a much more competitive Electoral College race in the future!

Barack Obama Calls For Paid Sick Leave For All Workers: Long Overdue!

The United States is the only advanced Western nation that does not guarantee all workers the right to paid sick leave, an outrageous situation, but Barack Obama is challenging Congress to rectify the situation!

This includes low paid workers primarily, and restaurant and other food workers are the major group, and by not giving them paid sick leave, it endangers the general public, when these kinds of workers are doing their jobs while sick, and often contagious!

This should be a basic human right, and part of human dignity, that when one is sick, he or she should not be mixing with the population that could up spreading disease.

And also, the paid sick leave should allow workers to take off paid time to help sick parents, sick children, or a sick partner, as family responsibilities are part of life for all of us.

The Republicans, of course, oppose this, but Obama is correct in pushing this idea, and putting the GOP on the spot, as unconcerned about the welfare of workers, which we know, of course, is reality.

This should become a key issue for the Democrats in the 2016 Presidential election!

Potential Republican Presidential Field: Eleven Governors, Four Senators, A Corporate Executive (Female), And A Pediatric Surgeon (African American)!

The potential Republican Presidential field, at least that developed by Crowdpac.com, contains the following mix of potential Republican Presidential candidates:

ELEVEN Governors or former Governors–Chris Christie, Rick Perry, Bobby Jindal, Mike Huckabee, Mike Pence, John Kasich, Rick Snyder, Scott Walker, Jeb Bush, Jon Huntsman, Mitt Romney

FOUR Senators or former Senators–Rick Santorum, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul

ONE Corporate Executive (female)–Carly Fiorina (Hewlett Packard former Chief Executive Officer)

ONE Pediatric Surgeon (African American)–Dr. Benjamin Carson

Some think, because of these circumstances, that it is likely that a Governor, past or present, is the likely GOP nominee, and that would seem to be a good bet!

However, from this blogger’s perspective, only three of the above are at all acceptable—Jon Huntsman, John Kasich, and Jeb Bush. The rest of the list is horrific to imagine in the White House!

Obama’s State Of The Union: A Liberated President Making The Democratic Values Case!

Barack Obama is finally liberated as he began his seventh year in the Presidency on the sixth anniversary of his inauguration as the 44th President of the United States.

Obama made an appeal to the opposition Republicans to cooperate and work together, but he also made clear he was going to charge ahead on a list of goals that are a marker for the next Democratic Presidential nominee and the Presidential Election of 2016.

He called for infrastructure spending; free community college tuition; child care tax credits; paid leave for workers; immigration reform; effective regulation of gun purchases; tax cuts for the middle class; tax increases on the wealthy and large financial institutions; pointed out the greatest economic success and growth since 1999; threatened use of the veto when necessary; called for authorization of force against ISIL (ISIS); called for action on climate change; used the term transgender in his call for fair treatment of gays and lesbians; called for more support in dealing with improved relations with Cuba; emphasized the need to fight against anti semitism, but also try to come up with a nuclear agreement with Iran; and work to avoid more troops on the ground overseas.

Much of this agenda will not be accomplished, but sets a goal line for the future.

Meanwhile, Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa surprised many observers by NOT totally falling on her face in her Republican response to the State of the Union address, but her speech was mainly platitudes and folksiness, not substantial alternatives to what Obama proposed, but rather a condemnation of what Obama has done, particularly ObamaCare. She also did not speak on such important issues as climate change, immigration, foreign policy, and helping working families, but then, the Republicans always stand in the way of progress on so many issues, so it is not surprising that her speech was lacking.

Iowa Freshman Republican Senator Joni Ernst To Give Response To Obama State Of The Union Address: What A Comedy Routine It Will Likely Be!

One of the nuttiest, wackiest new Republicans in the new 114th Congress has been compared to former Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and former Alaska Governor Saran Palin.

That is Iowa Republican Senator Joni Ernst, who, like Bachmann and Palin, has a great personal appearance, but it is clear that she, like Bachmann and Palin, has very little brain matter upstairs.

This woman acted in a goofy way when she accepted victory in the Iowa Senate race against Congressman Bruce Braley in November. She has spouted Tea Party values, which promote taking us backward and are narrow minded and intolerant. It will be interesting to see how she presents herself tonight, as the Republican response to the State of the Union address of President Obama.

She is an extremely poor replacement for Iowa’s distinguished former Senator Tom Harkin, who was one of the bright lights in the Senate, and sought the Presidency on the Democratic side in the 1992 Presidential race, with this blogger being in support of his candidacy, as the best person in that race.

Despite losing that competition, Harkin served for 30 exceptional years in the US Senate, and Iowa has made a mistake in electing this lightweight woman to be his replacement.

Watching her deliver the response to the State of The Union Address on Tuesday night will, likely, be entertaining, a comedy routine that will likely be repeated on Saturday Night Live, and joked about on Bill Maher’s show on HBO.

It is great to have more women in the Senate and House of Representatives, but somehow, the GOP seems incapable of getting bright, intelligent women to run for public office, as compared to those women who run on the Democratic line. This is a tragedy of major proportions!

“Selma” Film Brings Back Memories Of Bloodshed And Deaths Over Voting Rights, As We Look At Crippled Law Due To Supreme Court!

Watching the “Selma” film, which has been nominated for Best Film in the Oscar Awards competition, one is reminded of the turmoil, bloodshed, and deaths that occurred over the issue of voting rights in the South a half century and more ago.

The Voting Rights Act, which became law exactly 50 years ago, was designed to prevent any more such denial of the right to vote, but the right wing Supreme Court, including African American Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, changed the effectiveness of the law two years ago, causing new voting restrictions in the past two years in Republican controlled states, and not just in the South, but also in the heartland of the nation, the Midwest and Great Plains States, and even some Western states.

Shelby County V. Holder made it possible once again to create barriers to voting, and the battle for voting rights has new challenges, which already has had an effect on voting in the midterm elections of 2014.

But seeing this film about the Selma to Montgomery march fifty years ago, motivates those who believe in fairness and democracy, to do whatever can be done to restore the purpose of what those people who died or were injured then did, a sacrifice that should not be forgotten!

Supreme Court Accepts Same Sex Marriage Case: The Final Push For Marriage Equality Has Arrived!

The Supreme Court has finally accepted a same sex marriage case, to be argued in April, and decided by the end of June!

This will be a blockbuster case, coming at a time when 36 states already allow gay marriage, and the final push for marriage equality has finally arrived!

While there is no guarantee that the Supreme Court will rule in favor of same sex marriage, it is hard to conceive of the Court rejecting it at a time when all but 14 states have accepted it, as the momentum is clearly in favor of acceptance.

Beyond that, the odds are good that at least five members of the present Court would support it, enough to bring it about, but it would be desirable if the vote was greater than that thin margin.

Associate Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan, all Democratic appointments of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, are seen as assured votes.

Ronald Reagan appointee Anthony Kennedy is the typical “swing” vote, and has supported gay rights in the past, and most particularly, in the case of Lawrence V. Texas in 2003, so it is expected he will go the same direction again.

But there is a chance that Chief Justice John Roberts could join the majority, and some observers imagine that Samuel Alito could join, also.

And even some think that Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia, seeing the handwriting on the wall, might join and make it unanimous, which would be the most fantastic situation imaginable!

Imagine the extremist Christian Right bigots, and conservatives and Republicans, and how they will, figuratively, commit suicide if the Court rules in favor of same sex marriage!

It will transform the Presidential Election of 2016, as how could any Republican nominee come out and condemn the Court, and run on some crazy idea that he would lead a movement to overcome the Supreme Court decision?

Just the thought that many Republicans, including those running for President, will be squirming in public, is a source of delight, as human rights wins out once again!

Personality DOES Matter: Why Chris Christie Will Never Be President!

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie may be described as the most centrist Republican Presidential candidate, and also as one of the “Establishment” Republican Presidential contenders, which includes Jeb Bush and Mitt Romney.

But we have NEVER had a person as confrontational, as rude, as bullyish, as loudmouth, as obnoxious, as Chris Christie has been with ordinary New Jersey citizens who dare to challenge or question him!

Can one imagine such a person as President, speaking to foreign leaders, directly or indirectly, in such a undiplomatic manner? We would have World War EIGHT, as he would inspire wars just with his dripping sarcasm and lack of tact!

It might be entertaining to some in New Jersey that Christie is such a character, and we have seen staff and supporters around him who laugh heartily when he goes after a tax payer, a parent, a critic, but there is nothing laughable about such behavior!

We have never had a President with such a personality, and have never had a nominee with such a personality, and we are not about to witness that happening!

Chris Christie, if he enters the Presidential fray, will be repudiated in the Iowa Caucus in January of next year, not only for his comparative moderation on issues and views, but also on his brusque personality, which does not wear well in the Midwest, a comparatively low key, friendly environment of people who are laid back in nature, and do not like rudeness or nastiness. And New Hampshire citizens in their primary, and New Englanders, will also not take well to Chris Christie’s New Jersey “in your face” mannerisms and speech!

So the best suggestion for Chris Christie: Stay out of the Republican Presidential race, and avoid embarrassing yourself, and being soundly repudiated1