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Gender: Male
Hometown: Detroit Area, MI
Home country: USA
Current location: San Francisco, CA
Member since: Wed Oct 29, 2008, 02:53 PM
Number of posts: 36,867

About Me

Partner, father and liberal Democrat. I am a native Michigander living in San Francisco who is a citizen of the world.

Journal Archives

Appeals court delivers second blow to Republicans in Wisconsin voting case

MADISON - Republicans sought Wednesday to kick a lawsuit over Wisconsin's voting laws to the state Supreme Court, but a federal appeals court quickly blocked their effort.

It was the second ruling against Republicans in less than 24 hours by a panel of three federal judges appointed by GOP presidents. Republican state lawmakers had hoped to get the case to the state Supreme Court, where conservatives hold a 4-3 majority.

On Tuesday, a panel of the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago allowed extended deadlines for absentee voting to go into effect in Wisconsin after determining Republican lawmakers and arms of the Republican Party did not have the authority to pursue an appeal of a ruling by U.S. District Judge William Conley.

The appeals court based its decision in part on a state Supreme Court decision from July that it said limited the ability of lawmakers to be involved in litigation involving the state.


Madison voters ask judge to ensure the counting of ballots collected at 'Democracy in the Park' even

MADISON - Five voters asked a judge Wednesday to rule that absentee ballots Madison poll workers are collecting in more than 200 parks will be counted.

Madison on Saturday held its first "Democracy in the Park" event, despite accusations from Republicans that the program was improper. The city plans to do the same again this Saturday.

Five supporters of the plan on Wednesday asked Dane County Circuit Judge Mario White to declare the event a valid way for voters to return their completed absentee ballots.

City Clerk Maribeth Witzel-Behl scheduled the events to help deal with a flood of absentee ballots that voters have requested because of the coronavirus pandemic. The city hasn't yet installed ballot drop boxes and some voters are reluctant to return their absentee ballots by mail because of slowdowns with the U.S. Postal Service, Witzel-Behl said last week.

Late last week, an attorney for Republican lawmakers raised objections to the events, claimed they were illegal and argued absentee ballots submitted at them could be invalidated. The voters who brought Wednesday's lawsuit dispute those claims and want the judge to assure voters that their absentee ballots will be counted.


Trump renews fears of voter intimidation as GOP poll watchers mobilize

The group of Trump campaign officials came carrying cellphone cameras and a determination to help the president’s reelection efforts in Philadelphia. But they were asked to leave the city’s newly opened satellite election offices Tuesday after being told local election laws did not permit them to monitor voters coming to request and complete absentee ballots.

On social media, right-wing news sites and in the presidential debate Tuesday night, President Donald Trump and his campaign quickly suggested nefarious intent in the actions of local election officials, with the president claiming during the debate that “bad things happen in Philadelphia” and urging his supporters everywhere to “go into the polls and watch very carefully.”

The dark and baseless descriptions of the voting process in Philadelphia were the latest broad-brush attempt by the Trump campaign to undermine confidence in this year’s election, a message delivered with an ominous edge at the debate when he advised an extremist group, the Proud Boys, to “stand back and stand by” in his remarks about the election.


American, United to furlough 32,000 as time runs out on aid

American Airlines and United Airlines say they will begin to furlough 32,000 employees after lawmakers and the White House failed to agree on a broad pandemic relief package that includes more federal aid for airlines.

American Airlines CEO Doug Parker said that if Washington comes up with a deal with $25 billion for airlines “over the next few days,” the company will reverse 19,000 furloughs set to begin Thursday and recall the workers.

United said the impasse forced it to furlough 13,000 workers. United said it told leaders in the Trump administration and Congress that if payroll aid is approved in the next few days, it too could undo the furloughs.

The moves by two of the nation's four biggest airlines represent the first — and likely the largest part — of involuntary job cuts across the industry in coming days.

Airline employees and executives made 11th-hour appeals this week to Congress and the Trump administration to avert furloughs when a federal prohibition on layoffs — a condition of an earlier round of federal aid — expires Thursday.


Beto O'Rourke says Texas is 'Joe Biden's to lose'

WASHINGTON — Hours before President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden meet for their first debate, Beto O’Rourke was ready to declare a winner — of Texas’ 38 electoral votes in November. Texas, O’Rourke said, “is Joe Biden’s to lose.”

“This is a state that perhaps better than any other understands the costs and consequences of Donald Trump,” O’Rourke said during a pre-debate press call hosted by the Texas Democratic Party. “And it’s a state by the way — not unrelated to that — that is Joe Biden’s to lose.”

No Democrat has won a presidential race in Texas since Jimmy Carter in 1976 and polls show Trump has a lead of at least a few percentage points.

But O'Rourke argued that public polling tends to underestimate Democratic performance in Texas. The former Texas congressman — and a one-time presidential rival of Biden’s — pointed to his own race against U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, which O’Rourke lost by 2.5 percentage points after polling showed him trailing by as many as 8 percentage points in the weeks before the election, as well as the 2016 presidential race, when Clinton similarly outperformed polling in Texas.


TX Poll: Young Latinos more enthused with Biden than Clinton

A University of Houston-Univision News poll released Tuesday found Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden leading with 66 percent of the Latino vote in Texas, compared to 25 percent for President Donald Trump.

That puts Biden in line with Democrat Hillary Clinton was in 2016 — she won 66 percent of the Latino vote compared to Trump’s 28 percent that year, according to exit polls.

“Generation X and Boomers …they’re a little bit more enthused with Biden than they were, particularly with Clinton,” said Jeronimo Cortina, associate professor of political science at UH and associate director of the Center for Mexican American Studies.

Tuesday’s poll — published hours before the first debate between Biden and Trump — showed that Latino support for Biden has nearly doubled since Super Tuesday when Biden had a lead of about 23 points in a previous UH study.


Democratic super PAC to target Houston-area GOP lawmakers in $2 million ad blitz

Forward Majority, a Democratic super PAC aiming to flip the Texas House and other Republican-controlled legislatures, on Tuesday launched a $1.8 million ad blitz targeting six GOP lawmakers in the Houston area.

The group’s TV and digital ad campaign, which surpasses $2 million when factoring in direct mail, includes spots attacking state Reps. Sarah Davis, R-Houston, and Sam Harless, R-Spring, on health care.

Another ad goes after state Rep. Gary Gates, R-Richmond, over previously surfaced allegations of child abuse, while a fourth spot accuses Republican candidate Lacey Hull of being an activist for “fringe organizations.”

Rounding out Forward Majority’s targets in the Houston area are state Rep. Ed Thompson, R-Pearland, and Republican Jacey Jetton of Richmond. Jetton and Hull are running for the seats held by retiring state Reps. Rick Miller and Dwayne Bohac, both Republicans.

The districts are among the more than 20 Republican-held seats Texas Democrats are targeting in 2020 as they try to capture a majority in the Texas House. Republican control the lower chamber, 83-67, after losing 12 seats in 2018.

The Bohac and Davis seats are viewed as more attainable targets than the ones held by Gates, Harless and Thompson, though Democrats are taking aim at those districts in part because Republican U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz carried each one over Democrat Beto O’Rourke by fewer than six points. O’Rourke narrowly won Miller’s district in Fort Bend County.


FLIPPABLE: Pasha Baker for FL-HD28

Pasha Baker is the Director & Chief Executive Officer of The Goldsboro West Side Community Historical Association, Inc. In her daily role she collaborates with State and Federal agencies, partners with small businesses, executes grant and fundraising platforms, and manages the Goldsboro Museum, Francis Oliver Cultural Arts and Goldsboro Welcome Center, Crooms Academy Museum, The Goldsboro Heritage & Art Garden, The Goldsboro Arts Square, and Page Jackson Cemetery.

Ms. Baker is also the former Chief Executive Officer of Posh Business Solutions and Life of a CEO Capital; A Project Manager for JPMorgan Chase and Verizon.

Pasha is a native of Sanford, Florida, and she is a true “Southern Belle”. She graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in International Relations. As an ongoing effort to enhance her skills, Pasha has taken Executive Classes at Yale University.

Ms. Baker’s humble beginnings and life lessons led her to entrepreneurship. It was this experience that encouraged Pasha to create a entrepreneur ecosystem. She set her sights on really making a difference within her community. She became one of the most sought after entrepreneurs in Central Florida. Her desire was to create an Economical Development Model that would provide the disenfranchised with financial stability and growth opportunities. Ms. Baker accomplished this goal by creating jobs within her area and building businesses that withstood economic highs and recession lows. Pasha is one the most influential young business leaders of today.

Among her many Business Achievements, she has Franchised a Cupcake Company, Created a Construction Company, a Funeral Home, a Chain of Endodontics Offices, National Tie and Bowtie line, a Women’s Retail Store, a Bartending School, and Streamlined a Consortium of State Colleges.

Ms. Baker is also a former advisor for the Florida Regional Consortium for Technology Enabled Learning Solutions, Polk State College, and Seminole State College. She wrote the Entrepreneurship Certificate Curriculum, Assessments, and Resources for Credit and Non-Credit Students for Polk State College.

Pasha’s Accolades consist of the 2018 Onyx Women On The Move Honoree, 2012 Orlando Business Journal 40 under 40 Winner, 2012 Visionary Leader of the Year by The Central Florida Girl Scouts Nominee, 2012 & 2013 Orlando Business Journal Young Business Woman of Year Nominee, 2011 National Small Business Influencer Nominee, 2011 Business Buddies Tampa Bay Young Professional of the Year Nominee, Tampa Bay Business Journal 30 Under 30 Winner, Tampa Bay Business Journal Young Minority Business Person of the Year Nominee, and Tampa Bay Business Journal Young Business Woman of the Year Nominee.

Ms. Bakers dedication to Sanford is proven by her Community Service, Board Appointments, and Business Success. Her life evolves around assisting others perform at their highest peak, both professionally and personally.

Pasha has a passion to change the current climate of Sanford and pledges to advance Sanford through Family First, Education, Economic Development, Public Safety, Arts & Culture, and Environmental Awareness.


Tweet of the Day


Biden prepares ad onslaught to overwhelm Trump

Former Vice President Joe Biden and his Democratic allies are preparing an advertising blitz that threatens to overwhelm President Trump in the closing weeks of the race for the White House, an onslaught of cash aimed at blowing up what Trump campaign officials once called their Death Star.

Biden's campaign alone has reserved nearly a quarter billion dollars in advertising over the next five weeks in 18 swing states. Outside groups that support Biden have blocked off $112 million in their own airtime.

President Trump's campaign, which spent heavily on advertising earlier in the year, is set to spend far less. So far, the campaign has reserved $130 million in airtime in 13 states, according to data provided by one Democrat and one Republican watching the advertising market.

Outside Republican groups have reserved $39 million in airtime. That figure is set to rise in the coming days after America First Action, a super PAC run by close Trump advisers, said Tuesday it would purchase $40 million in airtime, digital advertising and direct mail in five battleground states.


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