The question remains: why do Republicans come back, over and over, to this kind of thing, to peddling a cocktail of fear mixed with hate? They've got nothing else. They can't sell their right-wing policies as actually working because there's no data to back that up. They can't even sell their policies as logical because, well, they aren't.
So what can Republicans do? Get people afraid. Afraid of "them," the brown president and the brown hordes at the border. In reality the people at the border are refugees and children. To Republicans, that doesn't matter and it certainly doesn't inspire compassion. Steve King's anti-immigration ally Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) has been harping about the supposed "diseases" these children are carrying.
This is all about fear, about making people afraid of what America is becoming, of what America already is. Republicans are counting on the fact that fear makes people do stupid things. Like voting Republican.
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, seemed to catch everyone off guard Wednesday when he suddenly pulled the plug on his committee hearing before witnesses could even testify.
Issa read his opening statement for the hearing on potential abuses of taxpayer funds by the White House's new political office, and let his Democratic counterpart, Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), read his statement before declaring the hearing over. Two witnesses who came prepared to testify were dismissed. A source who was in the hearing said one of Issa's witnesses, Carolyn Lerner, the director of the independent Office of Special Counsel, appeared to leave angrily.
This Senator is Spot On.
WASHINGTON -- The last likely opportunity for Congress to avoid completely draining the nations highway budget will present itself on Tuesday afternoon.
Though a Republican proposal to temporarily extend the Highway Trust Fund gained notable opposition Monday from two powerful conservative groups, leaders from both parties expressed optimism that the extension would pass.
SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. Populist Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) got a rock-star reception during a standing-room-only campaign rally here Monday, as hundreds of liberal activists cheered her broadsides against corporate interests and voiced hopes that her presence might shift the political winds in an increasingly Republican state.
Our job is to fight for the families of America, Warren said, speaking to a packed ballroom at the Clarion Hotel in West Virginias eastern panhandle. Stitch up the tax loopholes so that millionaires and billionaires pay at the same tax rate as the people in this room.
WASHINGTON -- The GOP-led House of Representatives embraced a former stimulus measure Friday, voting to make it and another related tax cut permanent, adding $287 billion to the deficit over the next 10 years.
The largest part of the cut, worth more than $263 billion, is making permanent so-called bonus depreciation, which allows businesses to write off the cost of capital investments and improvements much more quickly.
More Tax Cuts for the Rich and corporations.
BILL MOYERS: You have covered the court, Linda, since 1978. In that context what do you make of the Roberts court?
LINDA GREENHOUSE: Ah, so I try to think generously about the court, you know. But I think its hard for anybody looking at this court objectively to come away not thinking that its a court in pursuit of an agenda. And Im sorry to say, I think that agenda maps on pretty closely to a Republican Party platform in things that in the hot button issues that many of us care the most about.
BILL MOYERS: And is that unique in the years youve covered the court?
LINDA GREENHOUSE: I have to say so, yes, in terms of a five-member coalition having coalesced for those results. Not that there havent been conservative versus liberal splits on the court always. And I covered the transition between the Burger court to the Rehnquist court. And certainly Chief Justice Rehnquist had an agenda, was kind of a states rights agenda that he was pretty successful in accomplishing.
But what we see now, I think, is a much broader effort across more areas on constitutional doctrine that really touch the lives of people, whether its religion, speech, politics and so on. So its something that I find quite concerning.
DAHLIA LITHWICK: I agree. I think that, you know, you need look no farther than the win record of places like the Chamber of Commerce, you know, big business at the court is having its winningest few seasons under the auspices of the John Roberts court. And these are, you know, business interests that used to win, you know, 50 percent of the time, 60 percent of the time. And in the last few years between 70 percent and 80 percent of the time, issues on which the Chamber of Commerce and other pro-business lobbies get involved in cases, were looking at huge win rates.
And I think that if you look at the architecture of unraveling the sort of Warren court revolution, what the court stood for, you cannot look at the Roberts court and say that theyve done anything other than systemically unravel voting rights, womens rights, workers rights, environmental progress. Its a pretty palpable and I think unequivocal trend.
BILL MOYERS: I think youve also written that the right on the court is further right than mainstream conservatives.
DAHLIA LITHWICK: Well, I think that theres two things. One is that its absolutely clear (and I think this is empirically proven), that for the last few decades everybody who retires on the court is replaced by someone either slightly to their right or significantly to their right. So the court has not kept apace with, you know, mainstream legal thought. The court has torqued more and more to the right.
And I do think that on some of these issues, notably birth control, which we saw kind of I guess somewhat illuminated in the Hobby Lobby discussion, this is a view of birth control that is not at all in step, I think, with where the American public is on birth control. And so I think in that sense the court isnt simply to the right of sort of mainstream legal thought but dramatically to the right of the rest of the country.
LINDA GREENHOUSE: So you had Justice Scalia and Justice Thomas way out there and you had Chief Justice Roberts I think misinterpreted by many people as steering a moderate middle course. What he was doing was, as hes been doing all along, steering a strategic course to tee up the court to ultimately be in a place where hed like it to be, but he doesnt need it to be there all at once.
Right-wing radio host Alex Jones posted a report online today in which he urged listeners to seriously consider the truth behind Joan Rivers statement that Barack Obama is the first gay president because his wife, Michelle, is a tranny.
Well, Joan Rivers talked about it the other day, and now its an international news story, he said. The question is, Who is Michelle Obama? Is she really a woman? Is she a man?
Now, Im not drawing any conclusions here, Jones continued, but I know this its fair to question anything and everything this administration says. I cant think of an administration in history thats been caught with such a perfect record of everything they say and do being a lie or a fraud.
These people are the authors of such tyranny that they shouldnt whine and complain when the public doesnt believe anything theyre saying especially when every time I look at Michelle or Michael Obama, the First Lady, or First Tranny, something doesnt look right.
She doesnt look like any black woman Ive ever known, Jones said. Shes got shoulders that are wider than a mans, which physiologically doesnt happen. You can put three heads on a mans shoulders, and two heads on a womans shoulders thats a known anatomy.
They really do hate President Obama. They hate him with every breath they take.
Republicans who signed up for Obamacare this year are liking their new insurance coverage, according to a new survey.
A poll of Obamacare enrollees published Thursday by the Commonwealth Fund found that 74 percent of newly insured Republicans are happy with the plans they bought. Overall, 77 percent of people who had insurance prior to the rollout of the Affordable Care Act said they are pleased with the new coverage they obtained in the last year.
The survey revealed the current uninsured rate among working-age adults in the U.S. has dropped to 15 percent, down from 20 percent in July-September 2013 -- meaning an estimated 9.5 million people have gained coverage since then.
Report: $6.6 trillion lost on Bush tax cuts actually cost Americans $6.6 trillion in personal incomeReport: $6.6 trillion lost on Bush tax cuts could pay all student loans, car loans, credit cards
A new report argues that the Bush tax cuts actually cost Americans $6.6 trillion in personal income more than enough to pay for every student loan, car loan and credit card debt in the U.S.
In an Al Jazeera America column on Wednesday, investigative reporter David Cay Johnston calculated the average income of Americans between 2001 and 2012 the years President George W. Bushs tax cuts were in effect. After adjusting for inflation he compared that income with the average income in 2000, and determined that $6.6 trillion was missing.
Consider what $48,000 of additional income over those 12 years would have meant to you, Johnston wrote. It is the equivalent of $11 appearing in your wallet every morning from the start of 2001 through the end of 2012.
Had that $6.6 trillion shortfall been realized as income, it would have been enough to pay off all the student loans in United States ($1.26 trillion), all the automobile loans ($892 billion) and all the credit card debt ($827 billion), he noted. After paying all that debt off and taking taxes into account, Americans still would have more than $2.4 trillion left in their pockets and bank accounts.
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