US Senate

The Tragedy Of Senator John McCain, And What Might Have Been, And Luckily Did Not Occur

The news of Arizona Senator John McCain having brain cancer, with a low rate of survival long term, is a great tragedy.

Senator McCain is a courageous war hero; an outstanding figure in Senate history; a man with true principles and dignity; and in a party with so few people to admire, he stands out as a man who would not allow a nutty woman at a campaign rally to call his opponent, Barack Obama, an Arab and not a true American.

That moment in 2008 was a great example of the true John McCain, a man to respect and wish the best for his recovery.

At times, this author has been exasperated with John McCain, as at time, he waxes hot and cold, but at all times, there has been an acknowledgement of how he stands way above the norm of the Republican Party, and the fact that the right wing has always been a bitter critic, adds to his stature.

The only time when many could not tolerate McCain at all was when he allowed himself to be pushed into selecting Alaska Governor Sarah Palin to be his Vice Presidential running mate in 2008.

This was a total nightmare, but of course, McCain would not admit the error at any time since, but the thought of the moronic Palin being a heartbeat away, and having to listen to her outrageous public statements and actions over the past nine years, is enough to make one go insane!

This blogger always had the worry what if McCain had been elected, and had died in office, since he had numerous problems with skin cancer over the years, and had suffered mightily in injuries as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam from 1967-1973.

Once the eight years passed, we could sigh relief that McCain had made it through those eight years after Obama was elected.

But here we are in the first year since, and we have to say, thank goodness that McCain’s serious illness, if it had to happen, occurred now, not back then, which would have created a constitutional crisis only a bit less horrible than the present one with Donald Trump.

And McCain has redeemed himself on Palin by being a harsh critic of Trump, and warning against his excesses, and the idea that Trump would say McCain was not a hero because he was a prisoner of war, is one of the most egregious of a multitude of sins that Trump has said and done, and with no apology.

So McCain remains an American hero, and someone worthy to be praying for a recovery from his cancer diagnosis!

Trump Goes Ballistic, Condemns Jeff Sessions, And Implies Threat Against Robert Mueller: A President Gone Nuts!

Donald Trump is certifiably nuts, as evidenced by his NY Times audio interview, in which he attacked his own Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and implied a threat to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller, along with attacking the Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, and implying that the new FBI nominee, Christopher Wray, would be loyal to him. Trump seems not to understand that the FBI is NOT supposed to profess loyalty to any President, but to the rule of law!

This came after the luncheon with Republican Senators, in which Trump, with Nevada Senator Dean Heller sitting next to him, threatened him if he did not support the horrendous Health Care legislation that cannot get 50 Republican Senate supporters. Trump also attacked one Republican, Rand Paul of Kentucky, who had not attended the luncheon, and has come out against “TrumpCare”.

Heller just laughed, which was appropriate, and probably enraged Trump, and may have led to his tirade NY Times interview later in the day.

President Trump is coming apart at the seams, and he is more dangerous every day with his access to the nuclear codes, and his “Bromance” with Vladimir Putin, and his alienation of our NATO allies.

This is no longer tolerable, and there must be mobilization of masses of people in every state and in the nation’s capital, demanding his resignation.

The people must rise and demand action, and force the Republican Congress to put them ahead of their own agenda, or else suffer a massive defeat in 2018, which may happen in any case.

It is time for Republicans to stop party loyalty to a President who is very willing to “throw them under the bus”, and has no loyalty to anyone except his own family. It is time for them to move toward impeachment, which is a political act, not a legal act, and can be done as long as a majority of the House of Representatives wants it, and if 19 Republican Senators are willing to remove Trump, based on abuse of power, obstruction of justice, collusion with Russia which borders on treason, and violation of the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution.

We are in danger of a complete dissolution of civil order, as our civil liberties and national security are at stake with this madman in the White House!

Today is the six month mark of the Trump Presidency, and it has been a literal nightmare, and action must be taken to resolve this nightmare!

George McGovern Birthday, What Would Have Been His 95th: A Moment To Remember

Senator George McGovern of South Dakota, the 1972 Democratic Presidential nominee against President Richard Nixon, would have been 95 today, a moment to remember this great man, who passed away five years ago on October 21, 2012.

McGovern may have been an historic loser, winning only Massachusetts and the District of Columbia in his race against Nixon 45 years ago.

But McGovern was, in many ways, the most principled man ever to run for President.

He ran as an anti Vietnam War candidate, who had been a fighter pilot in World War II.

He ran as a person committed to the hungry, the poor, the disadvantaged in our society. He worked across the aisle with Bob Dole of Kansas to take action to help the most deprived in our society.

He ran as a principled and decent political leader who wanted to bring America back to its purpose, to promote equality, justice and compassion.

Americans instead voted for the most unprincipled and corrupt President in American history, until Donald Trump came along.

George McGovern was my idol, my hero, as a young man in graduate school, inspired by the fact that he had, like myself, pursued a PH. D. in American history, and had taught on the college level before entering politics.

What is it about America that too often they vote for the candidate who is far less principled, decent, and compassionate–as with Richard Nixon and Donald Trump as two examples?

Why is it that we have, as a nation, too often made the wrong choice?

This is something that will be repeated until the better side of our nature finally returns to the basic principles of America, and steers away from those who exploit our fears and insecurities and worsens the American condition!

Seneca Falls Women’s Rights Convention Anniversary On July 19 A Reminder Of Struggles American Women Still Face In 2017!

On this day in 1848, 169 years ago, the Women’s Rights Convention took place in Seneca Falls, New York, organized by Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott, with about 200 women attending.

It was a two day convention to “discuss the social, civil and religious condition and rights of women”.

The convention condemned slavery, and advocated women suffrage, along with property rights, education rights, equality in marriage and over children, and the rights of women to employment at a decent wage, all very advanced ideas for the time.

The idea that a group of women spoke up for their basic human and legal rights was seen at the time as revolutionary, and it would take to 1920 and the 19th Amendment for women to gain the right to vote nationally.

Here we are a century later, and still the fight for women’s equality is far from over, with the clear attack on women’s rights by Donald Trump, Mike Pence, the Republican Party, and right wing Christianity, including on equal pay, sexual harassment and assault, education, and court battles over privacy rights, including abortion rights and the equal treatment of lesbians.

We have an openly sexist and misogynistic President and Vice President, and even within the Republican Party, its women members, particularly in the US Senate, are shown lack of respect and equality in how they are regarded and treated by their male colleagues.

The fact that three women Republican Senators–Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia–helped to kill the attempt to end ObamaCare without protection for constituents on their health care, is leading to Trump being critical of them, and his disrespect for women is legion.

So the battle for women’s rights is suffering from retreat from earlier accomplishments, and the struggle goes on, and both women and men need to work together on fighting for those basic human rights for women, against women such as Ann Coulter, who has advocated repeal of the 19th Amendment, the Woman Suffrage Amendment, as we near a century since its addition to the Constitution.

Republican Effort To End ObamaCare Fails, And Blog Prediction That Three GOP Women Senators Would Take It Down Proved Correct!

The Republican effort to end ObamaCare has failed, and as this blogger predicted on July 5, it was three women Republican Senators–Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia–who did it in, including refusal to repeal without a replacement.

Donald Trump is already blaming these three women for the failure, rather than the party and the President take responsibility for the failure, and for the lie that no one would be hurt or lose their benefits, which millions of people knew otherwise, and used their voices and their writing and their attending forums to make clear that they did not want to lose what they had, and instead wanted something better, not something worse, to replace the shortcomings of ObamaCare.

The seven year plan to repeal ObamaCare was always nasty, mean spirited, and partisan, and without concern for the lives of Republican supporters and all Americans.

The Republican Party has been damaged badly by this desire to worsen the lives of Americans, and they have proved they have no conscience, no morals, no ethics.

The party of so called “Pro Life” is the party of death, willing to sacrifice people’s lives in their ideological and racist struggle against Barack Obama!

They have no problem throwing millions off health care, and they continue to act as if Medicare for All, similar to what other civilized nations have, would be a horror, when it is long overdue that ALL American be insured and entitled to health care, a basic human right!

If Trump supporters and Republicans who are NOT wealthy and need health care choose to ignore reality, and continue to vote in a stupid fashion, then karma will be visited upon them and rightfully, and in the long run of history, these evil, uncaring Republicans will pay the price by being condemned for their lack of concern for thy fellow man and woman!

“The Nineties” Series On CNN, Part 2, This Evening, Examines The Truth About The Bill Clinton Presidency, Warts And All!

This evening, CNN’s “The Nineties” Series, Part 2, will examine the unvarnished truth about the Bill Clinton Presidency, warts and all.

It will NOT be a whitewash of the Clinton Presidency, arguably the most scandal ridden Democratic Presidency in American history.

Some of the Clinton “Scandals” were conjured up by the right wing hatemongers, no question about that.

But Bill Clinton caused a lot of his own damage, and he cannot be made blameless, and one could say that the Monica Lewinsky Scandal, and other scandals surrounding women, including Paula Jones, disgraced the Presidency.

I wish to point out that when the scandal became public news in January 1998, this author felt that it was a disgrace, and that Clinton should resign immediately, but he refused, and put the nation through hell for an entire year, until he was found not guilty of impeachment charges by the US Senate. It was not an issue of morality, but rather the fact that his behavior could have compromised the national security if any of the women had been connected to Russia or some other foreign enemy, who know how to utilize women spies to blackmail a President or other public figure.

I never believed that Clinton should be impeached, and the hypocrisy of Republican leaders who were cheating on their wives with women, and yet putting Clinton through a constitutional crisis, was infuriating.

But CNN is not glorifying the Clinton Presidency, as much more could have been done during his Presidency, if only the President had known how to behave!

So my suggestion is to watch and think about the damage Bill Clinton’s behavior did to harm the nation, and remember that the first or second paragraph of his eventual obituary will mention that he was the second President impeached by the House of Representatives and brought to trial before the US Senate, after Andrew Johnson.

And now, we face the eventual possibility of the impeachment of Donald Trump, at some point, if he does not resign!

The Donald Trump Jr. Email Explosive Revelations Hastens The End Of The Trump Presidency On Accelerated Pace

The Donald Trump Jr email scandal keeps evolving, and now it is up to EIGHT participants in the meeting, despite the fact that Trump’s son wanted to be “transparent” and provide all of the facts, but instead we have new revelations daily about the Russian participation in the meeting in June 2016, designed to undermine Hillary Clinton’s Presidential campaign.

Trump Jr comes across as a deceitful and massive liar, just like his father, and Jared Kushner, Jr’s brother in law and son in law of Donald Trump, looks more and more like a sleazy character, who now has changed his security clearance forms three times, and revealed he had contact with more than 100 Russians, many of them connected to Vladimir Putin.

It is becoming evident that this is a far greater and more dangerous scandal than Watergate, and one can imagine that Richard Nixon, in the after life, is watching, shaking his head, and wondering how Trump gets away with it, when he was unable to do so.

But it is also clear that the Trump Presidency is on an accelerated pace to its demise, with the likelihood of a resignation sooner, rather than later.

Trump cannot be enjoying being President, as he is under constant attack and criticism, rightfully so, but something he is not accustomed to in his privileged life span.

Now that the scandal is directly affecting his family, and the possibility of future indictments as a result, one can assume that while Trump is willing to throw any of his staff or cabinet “under the bus”, that is not true of his family.

In theory, Trump could pardon his son or son in law if they were in legal danger, as Bill Clinton pardoned his half brother, Roger Clinton, of drug charges on his record, right before Clinton left office.

Trump’s mental and physical state is eroding, as he looks drained and older in appearance after just six months in the White House, and his erratic emotional behavior is truly alarming, as he undermines the reputation of the Presidency every single day.

So I can see a scenario where Trump decides he has had enough, that no one can take away the fact that he has been the 45th President of the United States, and that he will always have his followers who will believe in him.

He will wish to fight another day from the sidelines, dividing America for the rest of his life, continuing his obnoxious public persona, making him the most divisive President ever in American history.

And I can foresee that Trump would use his pardon power to protect his family and a few close associates from legal jeopardy, resign after that, and then Mike Pence, likely, despite controversy, would pardon Trump from any judicial or legal action, copying the Gerald Ford model with Richard Nixon.

Of course this would insure that Mike Pence would finish the term, much under a cloud of his own involvement in the Russian collusion, but he could be facing investigation for his own possible statements and actions, and would be challenged for the nomination within the Republican Party. The Democratic Party would be the odds on favorite to win both houses of Congress in 2020, as well as the White House, ending this “national nightmare”, as Ford declared it after Nixon’s resignation in 1974!

Mitch McConnell, Corrupt Senate Majority Leader, Who Has No Concern For His Kentucky Constituents

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky is certainly a very skilled politician, but he is also extremely corrupt.

McConnell declared war on Barack Obama in 2009, making clear there would be no cooperation with the new President on anything, forcing the President to settle for ObamaCare, only accomplished by united Democratic support, rather than a public option or Medicare for all, which would have been far better a result.

McConnell refused to permit Obama to make a statement about Russian collusion being clearly a problem in 2016, and yet, McConnell knew it was going on, but was cooperating with Donald Trump, even though in many ways, he disliked the Trump behavior and tactics.

Then, his wife, Elaine Chao, former Labor Secretary under George W. Bush, was named Secretary of Transportation for President Trump.

Chao, as Labor Secretary, was very anti labor in policies, and now is working to undermine Amtrak, the only transportation system for many rural communities, the ones who voted for Donald Trump, but now are in danger of losing their link to the outside world by public transportation, helping to harm the rural economy even further.

And McConnell is trying to force through a complete end of ObamaCare, including Medicaid, which benefits so many of his rural white constituents in Kentucky. Fortunately, it seems likely his mission will fail, and he will have to deal with the Democrats on fixing ObamaCare.

McConnell has no principles, no morality, no ethics, and could not concern himself about the poor whites in his state, and this is outrageous and unconscionable.

He is just a power player with no heart, and is, therefore, clearly a very corrupt Majority Leader, who will go down in history in a very negative way, as having undermined the health and economic survival of those who stupidly voted for him six times for the US Senate!

Time For Action By Congress On H. R. 19, Authorizing National Women’s History Museum On National Mall!

The Congress has accomplished nearly nothing under Republican leadership in 2017, but one action they should unite on is the passage of H.R. 19, authorizing the construction of a National Women’s History Museum on the National Mall.

Democratic Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney of New York introduced the legislation authorizing the building of the museum on March 30, 2017. It was referred to a Subcommittee On Federal Lands on April 7, 2007, and no further action has yet been taken. There were 127 cosponsors with Maloney, and now an additional 100, for a total of 227, have been added to that list.

Maloney has tried to lobby personally with President Donald Trump, his wife Melania, his daughter Ivanka, Vice President Mike Pence’s wife Karen Pence, and Kelly Anne Conway. to join in support of the museum project, but one wonders what the odds of endorsement are from a President who is a known misogynist.

Despite earlier moves to get this legislation accomplished under President Barack Obama, it failed to be dealt with before he left office. In 2014, the Congress voted to create a commission to study the creation of a national museum, and now the time for action has arrived in this 115th Congress.

Republican Senator Susan Collins of Maine introduced the Maloney bill in the Senate with 11 co-sponsors, but there is little enthusiasm evident to make such a museum part of the Smithsonian Institution, due to other priorities, and the issue of private funding being a long haul.

We are coming up to the centennial of women’s right to vote (19th Amendment) in 2020, and it would be appropriate that we were well on the way to the creation of such a building to honor the role of women, half of our population, which has been mostly ignored until now.

Ironically, though, the Republican Party has become so anti women’s rights, that they are likely to refuse to take action on this, as they work to undermine a woman’s right to an abortion; the right to equal pay; the right to be protected from sexual harassment; and the right to be treated as equals to men in all aspects of life.

Too often, the religious Right has worked against women’s equality, and the Republican Party, the party that many early women’s rights advocates supported in the 19th and 20th centuries, now has taken steps backward in their advocacy of equality.

After Seven Years, Republicans Seem Ready To Accept Reforms Of ObamaCare Through BiPartisan Deal With Democrats!

After seven years of constant and vehement opposition of Republicans to Barack Obama’s signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act of 2010, it now seems as if the Republican Party in Congress is about ready to “throw in the towel”, and accept the continuation of ObamaCare with reforms and changes brought about by bipartisan cooperation with Democrats.

The statement of Mitch McConnell, Senate Majority Leader, conceding the likelihood of giving up the fight to obliterate ObamaCare, was a stunning moment of concession, and shows how the Republican Party is well aware of the impact of trying to end health care coverage for 20-30 million under ObamaCare and Medicaid expansion.

The fury of constituents at town halls is very clear, and is a sign that if enough reaction on any injustice can be promoted by those who want to prevent destructive action, it can actually lead to concessions.

But this also makes clear the total panic of the GOP about the upcoming midterm elections in 16 months, which could lead to a Democratic controlled House of Representatives.

There is even concern that the Republicans could lose the Senate, although that still seems a real long shot, as only 8 Republicans, compared to 25 Democrats, face election in 2018.

The only way possible for a Democratic controlled Senate in 2019-2020 would be if all 25 Democrats or their successors retained those seats, highly unlikely, and to win three of the eight GOP seats, but that would mean winning not only Dean Heller’s seat in Nevada and Jeff Flake’s seat in Arizona, but also Ted Cruz’s seat in Texas.

To kick the obnoxious, egotistical, and arrogant Ted Cruz out of the Senate would be a major coup, but to expect it to occur is highly doubtful at this point.

All of the Senate seats will be discussed at the proper time over the next 16 months on this blog, but right now, the emphasis must be on the gaining of the House of Representatives, by winning 24 or more seats, and immediately, the retention of ObamaCare, with necessary reforms!