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RandySF's Journal
RandySF's Journal
May 17, 2024

Missouri Democrats score major win to clear path for abortion amendment

Missouri Democrats scored a major win on Friday after Republicans abandoned their effort to make it harder to amend the state constitution. The victory paves the way for a ballot measure that would restore abortion rights to pass with just a simple majority this fall.

The stunning climb-down came thanks to a record-breaking Democratic filibuster and bitter internal divisions among Republicans, both between warring factions in the Senate and between the upper and lower chambers of the legislature.

Republicans were open about their desire to thwart an effort to undo Missouri's near-total ban on abortion by moving the goalposts for an amendment that's likely to appear on the ballot in November.

To that end, they sought to place a measure on the Aug. 6 primary ballot—just ahead of the November vote—that would require amendments to win not only majority support among voters statewide, as is currently required, but also a majority in five of the state's eight congressional districts.


May 17, 2024

Conservative media personality appointed to seat on Georgia State Election Board

ATLANTA -- A media personality who co-founded a conservative political action committee has been appointed to a seat on the Georgia State Election Board, which is responsible for developing election rules, investigating allegations of fraud and making recommendations to state lawmakers.

Georgia House Speaker Jon Burns, a Republican, on Friday announced the appointment of Janelle King to the board, effective immediately. She replaces Ed Lindsey, a former Republican state lawmaker, who resigned his seat after having served on the board since 2022.

“Janelle will be a tremendous asset as an independent thinker and impartial arbiter who will put principle above politics and ensure transparency and accountability in our elections, and I look forward to her work on behalf of the people of Georgia,” Burns said in a news release announcing King's appointment.

King is the third new member appointed this year to the board, which has four Republican members and one Democrat. In January, Gov. Brian Kemp appointed Waffle House executive John Fervier to chair the board, and the state Senate approved the nomination of former state Sen. Rick Jeffares. Janice Johnston is the Republican Party appointee to the board, and Sara Tindall Ghazal is the Democratic Party appointee.


May 17, 2024

Big Lie 'Architect' John Eastman Pleads Not Guilty to Arizona Election Charges

Former Donald Trump attorney John Eastman, who’s been called the “architect” of Trump’s attempts to subvert the 2o20 election results, pleaded not guilty to conspiracy and fraud charges in Arizona on Friday.

Eastman’s arraignment was followed by the release of his mugshot, in which he stared blankly forward while wearing a navy suit and tie.

Eastman faces charges along with 17 other defendants in the Arizona case, all of whom were indicted on charges related to an alleged GOP-run scheme to put forward a slate of electors who would say Trump won the state in the 2020 presidential election despite the victory going to Joe Biden. Eastman was the first to be booked and arraigned.

The former attorney, who was disbarred in California this year, is accused of leading the fake elector plot—based on fringe legal theories—to flip Arizona in Trump’s favor, despite Biden having won the state by just over 10,000 votes.


May 17, 2024

MI: Delta County Board of Canvassers certifies recall election results

ESCANABA, Mich. (WLUC) - The Delta County Board of Canvassers certified the May 7 recall election results at a meeting Friday evening in the 47th Circuit Courtroom.

Three of the four members needed to vote ‘Yes’ to certify the election. Only one board member, Bonnie Hakkola, did not vote.

This decision comes after two members initially refused to certify the results of the county’s May 7 recall election. The two Republican canvassers, Hakkola and LeeAnne Oman, refused to certify at a meeting Tuesday. Hakkola said the results were too close.

Director of Elections Secretary for the Michigan Board of State Canvassers Jonathan Brater wrote a letter Thursday to the Delta County Board of Canvassers advising the Delta County Board of Canvassers to verify the results.

Recalled county commissioners Robert Barron (R), David Moyle (R) and Robert Petersen (R) now have 48 hours to ask for a recount.


May 17, 2024

Mexico's Vote for Autocracy

As Mexico’s June 2 presidential election draws near, more is at stake than a competition among political parties. For the past five and a half years, the country’s prototypical populist leader, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, known as AMLO, has driven a process of democratic backsliding that mirrors developments in countries across the globe. Democracies are no longer dying primarily as a result of military coups carried out by generals with tanks and rifles. Mexico’s democracy, like many others, is being destroyed by a freely elected and popular president who has manipulated democratic institutions and seeks to change not just the rules of the electoral game but also the entire political system so that his party remains in power.

López Obrador’s party, the Movement for National Regeneration (Morena), is mobilizing its supporters to vote for a refurbished autocracy disguised as a democracy. Many Mexicans have succumbed to its allure. The president’s daily press conferences routinely portray his party as concerned for the poor, combating rapacious elites, and defending national sovereignty against internal and external threats, including opposition parties and foreign influence. López Obrador himself governs through polarization. He divides the population into two camps: “the people” versus “the enemies of the people,” the dispossessed versus those who disdain them, the popular movement that seeks change versus the conservative opposition that wants to maintain a status quo that works only for the elites.

López Obrador’s government has taken steps to alleviate poverty, including large cash payments to poor families and an increase in the minimum wage. But on his watch, criminal violence has run rampant, and with many of the education and health programs that formed Mexico’s social safety net replaced by clientelism, the poor are left to fend for themselves. Meanwhile, the president has consolidated his control of state institutions, pushed forward legislation that violates the constitution, and carried out an assault on the judiciary and the agencies that oversee elections. His party rules with the overt support of the military, which the president has empowered at the expense of democracy. The armed forces now serve as the country’s police, build major public works, and control immigration and infrastructure. They have accrued unprecedented economic power and are accountable only to López Obrador himself.

During the electoral campaign, Morena has slandered opposition politicians in state-controlled media and used the state apparatus to harass political opponents. The Mexican military has deployed Pegasus spyware to monitor activists, journalists, and human rights defenders. López Obrador has also used his public platform to doxx his critics. When a federal agency dedicated to government transparency decried the doxxing as a violation of Mexican data protection statutes, the president declared in his morning press conference that he was “above the law.”


May 17, 2024

MN: Gov. Tim Walz has signs Elections Omnibus bill


The Redistrict Network
#BREAKING: Gov. Tim Walz has signed the Elections Omnibus bill ending prison gerrymandering in Minnesota among other democracy reforms. http://tinyurl.com/bdms24z8
May 17, 2024

Reproductive freedom will be on the Colorado ballot in November

Colorado voters will decide in November whether to protect abortion access in the state constitution after elections officials Friday verified signatures collected for a ballot measure backed by abortion-rights groups.

The initiative would also lift the state’s nearly 40-year-old constitutional ban on state money being used to pay for abortions.

Democrats in the state legislature passed a bill in 2022 guaranteeing abortion access in state law. But that measure could be overturned or undermined by a simple majority vote in the General Assembly, or by the passage of a statutory ballot measure, which also only requires a simple majority to pass.

Initiative 89 would go a step further by putting the nearly unfettered right to get an abortion in Colorado in the state’s constitution, which, if passed, could only be overturned by a 55% vote of the people.


May 17, 2024

Missouri House puts questions of ranked-choice, non-citizen voting on the 2024 ballot

Arguments over the validity of banning non-citizen voting in Missouri, which is already illegal, were part of what ultimately killed an initiative petition bill prioritized by Republicans this session.

But in the final hours of the legislative session on Friday, the House approved a non-citizen voting provision as part of a Senate bill which will put a question before Missouri voters seeking to ban ranked-choice voting, or ranking candidates in order of preference.

“Missourians don’t want more voter confusion and exhaustion when they go to the ballot box than they already have,” said the bill’s sponsor, state Rep. Ben Baker, a Neosho Republican.

If approved by voters later this year, Missouri will officially ban ranked-choice voting and non-citizen voting. It would also confirm that elections only be carried out by paper ballot or “any mechanical method prescribed by law.”


May 17, 2024

Even Trumpworld Is Cringing at MAGA 'Morons' Crashing the Trial

A group of MAGA loyalists and wannabe heavy-hitter lawmakers played hooky from the Capitol on Thursday and made their way up to Manhattan to support Donald Trump in court.

While the merry band of court jesters, headlined by Reps. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) and Matt Gaetz (R-FL), may have been there to demonstrate their personal devotion to the former president and publicly attack the judge on his behalf, sources close to Trump sure don’t seem impressed.

In fact, three well-placed Trumpworld sources who spoke with The Daily Beast all suggested this latest court-crashing contingency did more to embarrass themselves than anything.

"Morons. All of them. Selfish morons,” one senior GOP aide told The Daily Beast, referring to Boebert, Gaetz, and their fellow travelers, Reps. Anna Paulina Luna (R-FL), Andy Biggs (R-AZ), Eli Crane (R-AZ), and Bob Good (R-VA).


May 17, 2024

GA: RNC Sues DeKalb County, Georgia Over Election Grant Records

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Republican National Committee (RNC) filed a lawsuit against DeKalb County, Georgia to obtain public records related to funding the county received from the nonpartisan pro-voting group, the U.S. Alliance for Election Excellence.

In May of 2023, Gov. Brian Kemp (R) signed a bill into law that bans private funding for election administration. The bill was borne out of 2020 conspiracy theories related to the $400 million in no-strings-attached grants that Meta CEO Mark Zuckerburg gave to election offices across the country to help cover the unexpected increased costs of administering an election during the pandemic. Republican officials falsely claimed that the money, which they dubbed “Zuckerbucks,” was used to boost turnout for Democratic voters.

Since then, a number of states — including Georgia — have passed laws banning private funding in elections. Despite Georgia having already outlawed this type of funding, the RNC alleges that in 2023, DeKalb County, located to the east of Atlanta, received a $2 million grant from the U.S. Alliance for Election Excellence — a new program that operates within the nonpartisan Center for Tech and Civic Life, which distributed the no-strings-attached donation from Zuckerberg as grants in 2020.

When the Republican committee submitted a records request to confirm if DeKalb County did indeed receive the grant, the request said that county officials “took months to make its productions and provided implausibly few documents about this substantial injection of funds,” according to the RNC’s statement.


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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
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About RandySF

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