Voting Rights

A Crucial Month For Joe Biden And America!

The month of September is an extremely crucial month for the Joe Biden Presidency.

The issue of expansion of the national debt ceiling is essential.

So is how to bring about the two Infrastructure bills the administration has been promoting, one bipartisan and one by “reconciliation”.

Also, the need to deal with voting rights legislation; abortion rights guarantees to continue; the climate change crisis; the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to spread; and working to reform the Supreme Court and the filibuster.

Realistically, not all of these can be resolved that quickly, but progress is essential, as accomplishing change will not be easier in an election year, with the midterm elections of 2022!

March On Washington #2–1963, And Now 2021: Why Is This Necessary?

On August 28, 1963, the March On Washington took place in Washington, DC, with the speech of Martin Luther King Jr. being the most memorable speech–“I have a dream” reverberating between the Lincoln Memorial and the Washington Monument.—an appeal for civil and economic rights, and the end of racism.

At least a quarter of a million people of all backgrounds were there for that memorable event, and it was covered live on television and radio.

In the next two years, we saw the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and other landmark legislation and actions, and we thought the issue was settled.

But now, half a century later, we have a right wing Supreme Court, Republicans in Congress, and many state legislatures negating all of the progress made in the 1960s and after.

So we are in a spiritual crisis where right wing Republican conservatism promoting racism and denial of civil rights has become the norm once again!

Today, there will be marches across the nation, not only in Washington, DC, that will call for the end of the loss of the right to vote, as is occurring in so many southern and western states, and the promotion of the restoration of the progress that was made six decades ago.

This is a struggle for peaceful restoration of basic human and civil rights, and the suppression of the ugliness of bigotry that has once again become endemic!

The Supreme Court Is Undermining American Democracy And Basic Human Rights!

America is in a tragic situation, of a nation clearly more progressive than the Supreme Court, which has now been stacked with 6 solid conservatives out to take away voting rights, abortion rights, and protect corporations at the expense of workers.

At times, some of the 6 Republican appointees surprise, but clearly, the rights of people of color, women, labor, environmental causes, and basic civil liberties are under constant threat.

And the thought that five of the 6 Republican appointments to the Supreme Court were made by Presidents (George W. Bush, Donald Trump) who did NOT win the popular vote, but rather in contested elections, were awarded the Electoral College majority in 2000 and 2016!

We are in a crisis situation, where the Court is undermining American democracy and basic human rights!

Voting Rights Repressed In 17 GOP States And Counting, As Joe Biden Gives Strong Speech At The National Constitution Center In Philadelphia!

Joe Biden gave a stirring speech at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia yesterday, condemning the attack on the most basic right every American should have—-the right to vote.

The 15th, 19th, 23rd, and 26th Amendments, along with the Voting Rights Act of 1965 were designed to insure that no state could deprive anyone who is a citizen and at least 18 years of age, of the right to vote.

But 17 states (Southern and Western and Republican controlled) have made it more difficult for many Americans, particularly young, disabled, poor, or people of color to vote, including the following states:

Florida
Georgia
Alabama
Louisiana
Arkansas
Texas
Oklahoma
Kansas
Iowa
Indiana
Kentucky
Arizona
Utah
Nevada
Wyoming
Idaho
Montana

Republicans currently control both chambers of 30 state legislatures, and the number of states that are attempting to add to this list is alarming.

Texas Democrats have left the state, and face the possibility of arrest and fines when they return, but the idea that this could happen makes the governor of Texas, Greg Abbott, practically a dictator of Fascist orientation.

But the Democrats have every right to fight against the authoritarian bent going on in Texas and elsewhere.

The only way to stop this is national legislation, as with the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which has now been emasculated by the right wing Supreme Court, which has gone way beyond normal limits.

The John Roberts Court has brought us back to the 1930s!

It is urgent for the Democrats to unite and end the crisis in Texas and elsewhere by passage of (HR 1) For the People Act, and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, (HR 4)!

Journalism Essential Protection To Preserve American And Foreign Democracy From Authoritarianism

Journalism is an honorable profession, and the promotion and protection of the institution and the people who spend their lives promoting truth and facts is essential, in order to preserve American and foreign democracies from authoritarianism.

Of course, there are those journalism sites and individuals who choose to use their influence to peddle lies and mistruths, (such as Fox News Channel, Newsmax, One America Network), but it will not take away the validity and reality that major news sites ARE reliable, no matter how much naysayers claim otherwise.

All human beings make mistakes, and no journalism source is 100 percent accurate, but history tells us that reliable journalism sites are correct more than 90 percent of the time.

When one sees the shutdown of the Hong Kong democracy newspaper, and the crackdown on all expressions of truth, facts, and democracy in many nations around the world, it makes the defense of freedom of the press, freedom of speech, and the right to vote ever more urgent into the future.

So the struggle against authoritarianism requires recognition in America of such news sources that have proved their value and accuracy over the long haul, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, CNN, MSNBC, ABC, NBC, CBS, PBS, and a multitude of other news sources!

Biden First Press Conference A Complete Contrast To Donald Trump Attacks And Rants!

President Joe Biden held his first formal Press Conference on Thursday, and it was a home run.

The President showed knowledge, expertise, empathy, confidence, and respect for the news media, totally opposite of Donald Trump who held no press conferences most of the time, and when he did, he showed his authoritarian, Fascist leanings by dividing the nation and attacking the news media as the enemy.

Biden had an air of optimism about the future, and his public opinion ratings are in the low 60s to high 50s, a range of support NEVER reached by Donald Trump!

Biden is ambitious, and hoping to accomplish change on the level of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal and Lyndon B. Johnson’s Great Society, and this will require a modification of the present Senate rules, that allow a filibuster without any speaking commitment by those who wish to wage one.

There is a need for direct action on the Southern Border migration, climate change, infrastructure, gun regulation, minimum wage, and voting rights, and Biden is moving toward bold action on these issues, at a time when we have a nearly equally divided House of Representatives, and an evenly divided US Senate, and the future of this nation is at stake.

But the first Biden Press Conference demonstrated that Joe Biden is up to the task, that he has mental agility as compared to the irrational lunacy much of the time during the Trump Presidency!

Confirmation Of Justice Amy Coney Barrett Creates The Most Extreme Supreme Court Since 1930s!

The confirmation last evening of new Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett creates the most extreme Supreme Court since the time of the New Deal of Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1930s Great Depression, just as we are entering into the Second Great Depression.

The right wing narrow minded view of Justice Barrett is perceived as more so than even her mentor, former Justice Antonin Scalia.

The fifth woman to serve on the Court, she is the anti Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a great woman who we could only wish had been able to live two to three more weeks, preventing an appointment before the election.

And had she lived until December, even a lame duck President could not have replaced her before January and a new President.

This only accelerates the dire need for everyone to vote, and for the Republicans to be resoundingly defeated next week for the White House and the US Senate, and add seats in the House of Representatives.

With a 6-3 extremist Court, the following areas of law are greatly endangered:

Civil Rights and Civil Liberties in general
Women’s Rights
Abortion Rights
Gay Rights and Gay Marriage
Labor Rights
Voting Rights
Environmental Reforms
Consumer Reforms
Business Regulations
Separation of Church and State
Firearms Regulation

The answer must be to expand the Supreme Court to 11 members, adding two progressives or liberal voices to the Court, making for a slight 6-5 conservative majority, but promoting the concept that Chief Justice John Roberts and Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch will, at times, side with the liberals.

It does not guarantee progressive and liberal ideas, but that has been that way for a generation, but once either Clarence Thomas (age 72) or Samuel Alito (age 70) leaves the Court, likely in the next four years, a moderate Court will be achieved. And if Stephen Breyer or Sonia Sotomayor were to leave, it would insure a Democratic President choosing their successors.

Voting for Joe Biden and a Democratic Senate insures that the right wing tilt of the Court will be short lived!

We Are On The Way To The Most Reactionary Right Wing Supreme Court Since The 1930s

In the 1930’s, Franklin D. Roosevelt had the most reactionary right wing Supreme Court, working to undermine the New Deal.

This led him to promote the so called “Court Packing Plan” in 1937, to add six new Justices for each one over 70, but the Congress, controlled by his own party, but having a strong Southern conservative contingent, promoted its defeat.

Now, eight decades later, America is on the brink of having the most reactionary right wing Court since then, with the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett by President Donald Trump.

Already, the Supreme Court has four Justices appointed by Presidents who lost the popular vote, and now they will have a majority, if Barrett is approved, which is likely.

And Barrett does not believe in the doctrine of “Stare Decisis”, the legal principle of determining points in litigation based upon earlier precedents.

Instead, she has very strong personally held beliefs, tied to her strong Catholic faith, and her involvement in a religious charismatic Christian group called “People of Praise”, which preaches that the man is the leader of the family over the wife.

This is very concerning, because she seems likely to wish to overturn many precedents and laws that have been upheld, in unison with others on the Court who have right wing views, including Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Brett Kavanaugh.

The reliability of Chief Justice John Roberts and Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch is uncertain, as both, and particularly, Roberts have surprised on some decisions.

So a potential 6-3 Court on many cases could end up 5-4 in favor of the right wing, or possibly 5-4 with the three liberal appointments on the Court, but it seems more likely that the possible so called “best” outcome is at least 5-4 conservative.

So that means the Affordable Care Act, coming up for review in November after the election, could be gutted.

Also in danger are cases involving women’s rights, abortion rights, gay rights, labor rights, religious issues favored by conservatives, voting rights, Presidential authority, environmental laws, consumer laws, and the overall regulatory state promoted since the New Deal of FDR and the Great Society of Lyndon B. Johnson, as well as agencies formed under Richard Nixon and later Presidents through Barack Obama.

So we are involved in a crisis constitutionally which could destroy much of what the federal government has done in the past century of American history, and all brought about by Justices appointed under questionable circumstances by Republicans who do not follow rules except when it favors them, and by Republican Presidents George W. Bush and Donald Trump, who failed to win the national popular vote, and by Justices who, in the case of Thomas and Kavanaugh had major issues with private behavior with women.

And with Justice Stephen Breyer being 82, and Justice Sonia Sotomayor having issues with her health (diabetes), two of the three liberals on the Court could be replaced if Donald Trump or a future Republican President gains the opportunity!

The Republican Attack On Kamala Harris Begins, Including “Birtherism”, But It Will Not Succeed!

The Trump Presidency, the Republican Party, and the extreme right wing Fox News Channel and conservative talk radio and propagandists are already deeply in attack on Vice Presidential nominee Kamala Harris in every possible and obscene way imaginable.

This includes preposterous claims that Harris was not born in America, when she was born in Oakland, California, and therefore the “birtherism” charge used against Barack Obama is coming back.

She is being called too progressive or not progressive enough, and being portrayed as becoming the future President, since Joe Biden, supposedly, is close to being feeble mentally, and will resign soon. This is said after Biden conducted a great speech yesterday and today, as well as Harris doing so, and inspiring people that there is a coherent future after Donald Trump.

Joe Biden can bike vigorously, and is in good physical shape, while Trump rides in a golf cart, and becomes more incoherent by the day, totally delusional, and clearly terrified that Biden and Harris have such a large lead in all polls.

So now Trump is trying to prevent people from voting by causing massive postal service delays, which also endangers people getting their medications on a sustained basis by mail.

Trump is totally out of control, hysterical, while Biden and Harris are promoting a national mask policy for the next few months, as a consistent manner to curb the number of people who get the CoronaVirus and cut the number of deaths, which are at a high now, more than anytime since May!

Vote By Mail Should Be Alternative, And Should Be Offered Everywhere This November For All Elections

With the nation in the midst of the CoronaVirus Pandemic, it is essential that all states offer Vote by Mail as an alternative, making it mandatory for all elections!

As it is, about 25 percent of voters vote by mail, including this blogger and author.

People who are older; those who are disabled; those who are in hospitals, nursing homes, and other public institutions; and others who find it inconvenient to stand in lines at polls on Election Day already vote by mail.

If Donald Trump had his way, no one would vote by mail, as he knows that is the only way that a majority of people, not electoral votes, would vote for the Republican party. They make it their mission to make voting harder, and to work to undermine the right to vote for minority groups, and make voter suppression their major effort in office!

Standing online yesterday in Wisconsin, forced on voters by the Republican Party of Wisconsin and the US Supreme Court majority of conservative Republicans, was a total outrage and disgrace!

The right to vote is sacred, and no one needs to prove his residence, as long as he or she has registered to vote with proper identification. Once that has been established, we should follow Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Utah and Hawaii, all enlightened states, that have all of their elections by mail already!

Sixteen other states also have vote by mail allowed, including my state of Florida, but also California and Arizona as major centers of population. allow it.

It is time for such states as New York, Massachusetts, Virginia, Texas, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, and particularly Southern states, to spread democracy to all citizens!