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ViseGrip's Journal
ViseGrip's Journal
December 23, 2015

Hillary Clinton's Dirty Campaign Tactics - Some history many here are looking for

News & Politics

In Iowa, New Hampshire and now Nevada, the Clinton campaign has sought to suppress the vote of her rivals' supporters.

By Steven Rosenfeld / AlterNet

January 14, 2008

The headlines say the latest schism among the top Democratic presidential candidates is over gender and race. But on the ground in the presidential season's opening states, there is a darker narrative: that Hillary Clinton will not just fight hard, but fight dirty, to win. And her tactic of choice is attempting to suppress the votes of her rival's supporters.

The latest example is from Nevada, where the Nevada State Education Association is widely seen as filing a suit on Clinton's behalf to stop Las Vegas' most powerful union, Culinary Workers Local 226, from caucusing inside downtown casinos after the union endorsed Barack Obama. The tactic foments a split along racial and class lines in arguably the strongest union city in America.

"It's horrible," said one longtime Nevada activist, who didn't want his name used. "It will cause fights and damage that will last for years."

But the Clinton campaign has made similar moves in New Hampshire and Iowa.

In the first primary state, her supporters -- backed by New Hampshire Democratic Party officials -- pressured poll workers to remove observers stationed by the Obama campaign. These volunteers had intended to track voters as part of their get-out-the-vote effort. That tactic came after the Clinton campaign sent a mailing targeting women that said Obama would not "stand up and protect" a women's right to choose because he had voted "present" -- but not yes -- on a few abortion-related bills in the Illinois legislature.

"I've kept most mailers I got from every presidential candidate this year, and that mailer was the absolute worst," wrote New Hampshire blogger Peter Glenshaw. "Never mind that Obama has a 100 percent approval rating from Planned Parenthood in Illinois. Never mind that Planned Parenthood asked him to vote 'present' on those bills."

And in Iowa, the Clinton campaign -- with the help of the state's largest newspaper, the Des Moines Register, which endorsed her -- was discouraging students from returning from winter break to vote, even though their right to do so was legal, said Rick Hasen, who writes a respected election law blog. "Indeed such voting could help to compensate for the otherwise anti-democratic nature of Iowa's role in the presidential election process," he said.

As the nomination process has unfolded and Clinton has encountered resistance in every state so far -- including Obama's Friday endorsement by the 60,000-member Las Vegas Culinary Workers Union -- her campaign's increasingly critical rhetoric has been accompanied by voter suppression tactics aimed at her rival's core voters.

While Clinton campaign surrogates have verbally accused Obama of many things, from "fairy tale" answers on Iraq to being a drug user while they served the country more nobly, intentionally suppressing voters -- especially under-represented, low-income minority union members -- stands out in 2008's Democratic presidential campaign.

After all, the Democratic National Committee moved Nevada's caucuses to the top of the primary lineup so minority voices could be heard -- and no organization is more aligned with those voters in Nevada than the Culinary Union, whose training materials for its members are printed in four languages. In contrast, the state teachers, whose suit seeks to stop those workers from caucusing in nine "at-large" precincts in big downtown casinos, have a statewide base because its members work throughout Nevada.

The NSEA suit claims the at-large casino caucuses are not fair to the state's other voters because they will likely be overrun with voters, thereby skewing the proportional representation of Clark County delegates to the state party convention.

Neither NSEA officials nor their Las Vegas lawyers returned calls on Monday. However their suit states that "by packing as much as 10 percent or more delegates into the county convention, the at-large precinct caucus system (created for the casinos) substantially diminishes the voting power of delegates from other county precinct caucuses."

In other words, a strong turnout from the tens of thousands of Culinary Workers Union members in Las Vegas, where 70 percent of Nevada voters live, could swing the state's early foray into presidential politics. In 2000, fewer than 1,000 people participated in Nevada's caucuses. In 2004, that number was about 9,000. This year, estimates are in the tens of thousands.

Nevada political insiders say the NSEA lawsuit is designed to suppress Obama's voters.

"That's the common narrative at this point," said Pilar Weiss, the Culinary Workers Union's political director, when asked if there was any other way to interpret the suit. "A caucus system is all proportional representation. It's not unfair in any way. They (the state Democratic Party) made an accommodation for Clark County."

Another Nevada activist who has worked for years in the state was even blunter.

"This (caucus) plan was created by some of the same people who are plaintiffs in the suit against it," he said. "It's not that they didn't like the plan when Clinton was ahead."

Steven Rosenfeld is a senior fellow at Alternet.org and co-author of What Happened in Ohio: A Documentary Record of Theft and Fraud in the 2004 Election, with Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman (The New Press, 2006).


December 22, 2015

Lil' Debby Wassaman has turned this campaign into a real shit show but Bernie Sanders will fix it!

I have total faith and trust in him. Unheard of for a politician. He has the most integrity and he will not allow the democratic party to hijack our democratic process, or portray him as someone with little integrity. For 50 years, his record is clean.

Again, I smell a rat called : SET-UP

December 21, 2015

PolitiFact on Democratic Debate

In summary,
Hillary: FALSE - (SHE MUST HAVE KNOWN SHE WAS TELLILNG A LIE! She had nothing to back it up when they called and checked!) How does this help her numbers with 'distrust'?


PolitiFact: Fact-checking the Democratic presidential debate
• Angie Drobnic Holan, PolitiFact Editor
Sunday, December 20, 2015 2:53pm

Democratic president candidates Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton and Martin O'Malley, debate at Saint Anselm College on Saturday in Manchester, N.H. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
ISIS and terrorism were major topics at the Democratic debate on Saturday night at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, N.H. Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton used the venue to take a shot at Republican primary frontrunner Donald Trump, saying that his rhetoric is a gift to ISIS.

"We also need to make sure that the really discriminatory messages that Trump is sending around the world don't fall on receptive ears," Clinton said. "He is becoming ISIS's best recruiter. They are going to people showing videos of Donald Trump insulting Islam and Muslims in order to recruit more radical jihadists."

Not having heard that before, our eyebrows went up when we heard Clinton's comment, and we weren't alone. The Twitter sphere, on both the right and the left, picked up on Clinton's statement and questioned whether she had any evidence for it.

Extensive Google searches did not turn up any evidence. And the response from the Clinton campaign did not point to any specific videos. The campaign pointed to an NBC News story quoting Rita Katz of the SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors the social media activities of Islamic terrorist groups.

"They love him from the sense that he is supporting their rhetoric," she said. "They follow everything Donald Trump says. When he says, 'No Muslims should be allowed in America,' they tell people, 'We told you America hates Muslims and here is proof.' "

The article also quoted David Phillips, director of the Program on Peace-Building and Rights at Columbia University's Institute for the Study of Human Rights, saying that "Trump's incendiary anti-Muslim comments will surely be used by ISIS social media to demonize the United States and attract recruits to fight in Iraq and Syria."

But while such quotes support the notion that ISIS could be making recruiting videos, or will do so, they do not support Clinton's contention — offered in the present tense — that they are doing so.

Vox.com tweeted at J.M. Berger, author of the book ISIS: The State of Terror, and Berger tweeted back, "I would be surprised if they had and we didn't hear about it in a big way."

For now, it seems that Clinton has turned speculative left-of-center rhetoric into fact. At PolitiFact, the burden of proof is on the person making the claim. We'll update our fact-check in the event solid evidence emerges. But for now, that evidence does not exist. The Clinton campaign did not provide any evidence that this is happening — only that it could be happening, or that it may in the future. If ISIS was using Trump for recruitment videos, we would expect a frenzy of media coverage over it. We rated this statement False.

O'Malley, Clinton and gun control
Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley said he has the best record on gun issues among the Democratic candidates.

"Secretary Clinton changes her position on this every election year, it seems, having one position in 2000 and then campaigning against President (Barack) Obama and saying we don't need federal standards," O'Malley said.

We found that O'Malley does have a point that Clinton's rhetoric and her position on a few specific gun control measures shifted from 2000 to 2008, and then from 2008 to 2015.
In 2000, in the wake of the 1999 Columbine, Colo., school shooting, Clinton was emphatic about her support for gun control. In 2008, she dropped her support for a gun license and registration proposal and positioned herself to the right of her major opponent, then-Sen. Obama. While Clinton also advocated for leaving some gun control to the states, she still advocated for federal gun control efforts, and she never said "we don't need federal standards."
In 2015, Clinton has been more forceful with her support for gun control than she was in 2008 — closer to her rhetoric in 2000.

While her positioning has shifted, it wasn't nearly as dramatic as O'Malley made it out to be. We rated his claim Half True.

Sanders on health care spending
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is a longtime supporter of a single-payer U.S. health care system and he used some international comparisons to bolster his proposal.
"We spend almost three times per capita as to what they spend in the U.K. — 50 percent more than in France," Sanders said.
Data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development back him up. In 2013, total spending on health care in the United Kingdom was about $3,200 per person. France spent about $4,100. In the United States, spending topped $8,700. Do the math and Sanders is right.
We rated this claim True.

Angie Drobnic Holan is the editor of PolitiFact. Contact her at aholan@tampabay.com. Follow @AngieHolan.
PolitiFact: Fact-checking the Democratic presidential debate 12/20/15 [Last modified: Sunday, December 20, 2015 11:09pm]
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© 2015 Tampa Bay Times

December 20, 2015

Question submitted by ViseGrip

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December 20, 2015

Wow! Bernie Sanders kicks butt like a gentleman! His performance is stunning!

I've never been so proud of a politician in my life!

December 20, 2015

Brazille: Hillary working on trust with the voters. Really, after 30 yr career?

She is working on trust issues after years of corruption scandals.

December 17, 2015

Bernie Sanders has won the endorsement of Democracy for America!

With 271,527 votes cast -- and all three presidential candidates campaigning directly for your vote -- the results are in and they are extraordinary.

Bernie Sanders has earned Democracy for America's endorsement in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary with an astonishing, record-breaking 87.9% of the vote (including 77.8% of voters who were already members of DFA prior to the poll being launched on December 7).

This is an historic moment for DFA, for the progressive movement, for the Democratic Party, for people-powered politics -- and for Bernie supporters who relentlessly rallied over nine intense days to Get Out The Vote and win this pivotal endorsement.

Election Day in Iowa and New Hampshire is coming fast. Will you help mobilize progressives to get out the vote for Bernie? Contribute $3 or more right now to both Bernie Sanders and DFA by 11:59pm PT on Saturday -- and show the establishment the power of the DFA grassroots army.

This is the first time since our founding that DFA members have chosen to make an endorsement in a presidential primary and it couldn't have happened without the participation and Get Out The Vote efforts of members like you. With your help, Bernie was able to easily clear 67% -- a two-thirds threshold that TIME Magazine called a "high bar" -- undeniably demonstrating the overwhelming support he has from our members.

We're grateful to each of the Democratic candidates -- Hillary Clinton, Martin O'Malley and Bernie Sanders -- for participating fully in this process and making it clear how much they value our support.

Now, driven by the relentless energy of DFA members, we’ll immediately start organizing on behalf of Bernie in key primary states, from Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada to nearly a dozen states voting on Super Tuesday. We’ll also be building -- as Bernie has called for -- a political revolution ready to elect populist progressive candidates nationwide to local school boards, city councils, and state legislatures, and all the way up to the U.S. Senate.

We know that our people-powered organization can make a huge difference in this election and our first chance to prove it starts now. Please join me on this historic day in showing Bernie -- and the establishment -- that DFA members are working to win.

This endorsement can be a game-changer -- but only if DFA members step up right now and take action. Please click here to contribute $3 or more right now to both Bernie Sanders and DFA by 11:59pm PT on Saturday -- and show the establishment the power of the DFA grassroots army.

At DFA, a cornerstone of our electoral vision for revitalizing the Democratic Party is the knowledge that primaries matter -- and Bernie's campaign is a perfect example of why they do.

Like DFA members, Bernie has kept the fight against income inequality front and center in the presidential race. The 2016 presidential primary election could’ve been dominated by the same Republican-Lite rhetoric that helped Democrats lose control of the U.S. Senate in 2014. Instead, Bernie’s ideas and solutions for rebuilding the middle class have dominated the debate. His success has helped move critical issues like expanding Social Security, debt-free college, breaking up the big banks and getting big money out of politics -- all issues supported by the majority of Americans nationwide -- into the mainstream of the Democratic Party.

And Bernie is doing all of this while building a powerful, insurgent campaign that is steadily dismantling the conventional wisdom of DC skeptics who claimed he would never have a chance to win.

Bernie has held several huge events with tens of thousands of people in places like Portland, Oregon and Boston, Massachusetts -- but the political revolution hasn’t been limited just to liberal states. Over 8,000 showed up at a rally in Dallas, Texas, over 9,200 at an event in South Carolina, and over 11,000 people attended a July rally in Phoenix, Arizona, during one of the hottest days of the year. All in all, the Washington Post reports that over a four-week period this summer, more than 100,000 people attended Bernie's rallies, proving that his vision for America resonates across the country no matter where you live.

It’s not just the crowds. Bernie is polling in first place in New Hampshire and is in striking distance of a win in Iowa. The campaign broke a record just last night, as the first presidential campaign in history to bring in over 2 million individual contributions this early in the primary contest.

We're excited to be backing a bold progressive champion like Bernie, and we're going into full campaign mode to support him but -- as a grassroots progressive movement organization -- we're going to need some significant resources to make it happen.

Do you want DFA to be able to go all-in for Bernie? Maximize the impact of this critical endorsement by chipping in $3 or more to support Bernie Sanders and DFA immediately. DEADLINE: 11:59pm PT, Saturday, December 19.

Of course, this isn't the first time DFA has stood side by side with Bernie Sanders. Our organization has been working with him to make progressive change happen for years.

Together, we've run issue campaigns focused on raising the minimum wage, overturning Citizens United and stopping the job-killing Trans-Pacific Partnership -- and he has regularly chatted with our members on several DFA Live conference calls over the years.

On one riveting DFA Live call last year, Bernie warmly praised DFA members and celebrated the economic populism that has defined DFA, especially over the last two years: "Income inequality is the greatest moral, economic, and political issue facing our country today. That's why I've been so impressed with DFA's relentless work to address it."

The fact that Sen. Sanders was able to win our endorsement vote by such a huge margin is proof of the incredible energy and enthusiasm his campaign is inspiring. As Bernie himself so often says, this isn't just about him -- it's about bringing new people and energy into a movement that will fight for working families far into the future.

DFA has a long history of backing progressive candidates in contested primaries -- and when we give our endorsement, it's more than just talk. In every election cycle since Howard Dean founded DFA in 2004, not only have DFA members supported progressive candidates with their donations -- DFA members have also been the invaluable "boots on the ground" candidates need to get them over the top in close races.

We know how to build progressive power -- and that's exactly what we’ll do in Iowa, New Hampshire and beyond, by recruiting and training volunteers, fundraising for the campaign, and uplifting the issues that matter in this election.

Over the coming days and weeks, we will be working with the Sanders campaign to maximize our impact, add value, and help drive the campaign to victory. But the first action you can take right now -- with only 45 days left until voting begins in Iowa -- is to make the most of this pivotal moment with a huge, meaningful show of support for Bernie.

The political establishment is watching to see what kind of impact this endorsement will have on the presidential race. Let’s show them we can’t be stopped. Please chip in $3 or more now to support Bernie and DFA by 11:59pm PT on Saturday and show them that we're in this to win it!

Thanks for your vote and your support in this exciting and critical moment for the progressive movement and the Democratic Party.

- Charles

Charles Chamberlain, Executive Director
Democracy for America

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