Wednesday, April 30, 2008
A divided state Senate narrowly defeated a bill to require that most women seeking an abortion first be given an opportunity to look at an ultrasound image of the fetus.
The vote Wednesday was 20-20. Without a majority, the measure dies. There are ways a similar idea could resurface, but that is extremely unlikely with the legislative session scheduled to end Friday.
In a tense and emotional debate that went on for about an hour and a half, opponents from both parties said the bill would only create a new impediment to women seeking to end a pregnancy. That could violate U.S. Supreme Court decisions that have said government can't create such undue burdens.
They also argued that ultrasounds make abortions more expensive and therefore the new requirement would fall disproportionately on poor women.
Supporters, however, said the bill (SB 2400) would provide women with more information about a very serious decision. A couple lawmakers said they hoped it would encourage women about to have an abortion to change their minds.
State law already requires an ultrasound before a woman can have an abortion in her second or third trimester of pregnancy. The bill would have extended that to the first trimester.
It also would have added the requirement that the doctor give the woman the opportunity to look at the sonogram, although she could have declined to see it under the bill.
"If she doesn't want to see it, she doesn't have to see it," implored the measure's sponsor, Sen. Daniel Webster, R-Winter Park.
The vote followed several days of behind-the-scenes work by lawmakers on both sides of the issue to persuade a few members who were undecided on the measure. Seven Republicans joined 13 Democrats in voting against the ultrasound requirement. One Democrat, Sen. Gary Siplin, D-Orlando, joined 19 Republicans in voting for it.
The House had passed a similar bill in early April, although that measure also had other requirements involving minor girls seeking in court to be allowed to have an abortion without telling their parents. The Senate never seriously considered the House's broader bill, though, with Webster saying it never would have passed the more moderate Senate.
In 2006, about 95,000 pregnancies were terminated in Florida.
Opponents in the Senate argued that ultrasounds don't necessarily serve any medical purpose in a first trimester abortion, and that there aren't any other cases in which the state dictates procedures that doctors must use in various medical situations. That made the measure simply an attempt to coerce women into changing their mind about an abortion, several of them said.
One of the most passionate supporters of the bill, Sen. Ronda Storms, acknowledged that she did indeed hope it would discourage abortions when women look at the sonogram.
"There is something magical about seeing that baby take his little thumb and put it in his mouth and suck his thumb," said Storms, R-Valrico.
Senate Democratic Leader Steve Geller was one of several opponents who said he is opposed to abortions, but argued it was a personal moral or religious decision that not everyone shared. But he agreed with Storms about the power of an ultrasound.
Geller recalled seeing the image of his son Mark in an ultrasound when his wife was pregnant and acknowledged it moved him deeply. He said he considered the fetus a child - even calling it by name.
But that was a decision based on his and his wife's deeply held - but personal - religious beliefs, said Geller, D-Cooper City.
"I can't say we should impose our views on the entire state," Geller said.
The bill had been favored by religious groups, including the Florida Catholic Conference.
"This would have allowed truly informed consent," said Mike McCarron, the conference's executive director. "How can we not give them the opportunity to see what is truly at stake in this procedure?"
Several other states have laws requiring ultrasounds before abortions, although they vary on the details such as whether women must view the sonogram.
Several of the seven Republicans who voted against the bill said the issue was one of privacy and freedom from government intrusion. Sen. Jim King, R-Jacksonville, said the requirement didn't fit his view of the Republican philosophy of less government.
"This is more government," said King. "It's government intrusion."
Obama did himself, the Democratic Party, and the progressive movement a disservice this weekend.
It was a mistake for Obama to go on FOX's Sunday show and treat the experience as if it was a real news interview. Democratic politicians need to understand that FOX is a Republican mouthpiece masquerading as a news outlet. When dealing with FOX, you either burn them or they will burn you.
It's well documented that FOX executives send morning memos to anchors and reporters dictating Republican talking points. In 2006, one said, "Be on the lookout for any statements from the Iraqi insurgents...thrilled at the prospect of a Dem controlled Congress." Robert Greenwald's videos have shown FOX's consistent pattern of smearing Barack Obama, smearing Hillary Clinton, smearing African Americans, and denying global warming.
FOX's power lies not in its audience size which is puny and consists mostly of unpersuadable voters. Instead, FOX's power comes from tricking politicians and real journalists into treating their "breaking stories" like real news, thereby propelling smears like the Swift Boats and Rev. Wright into the mainstream political dialogue. That's why progressives fought (successfully) last year to deprive FOX of the legitimacy that comes with hosting a Democratic presidential debate. And that's why Democratic politicians should never treat FOX like a real news outlet - including FOX's Sunday show.
Barack Obama's campaign made a promise before this weekend's appearance. They said he would "take Fox on" inspiring hope among those who watched Bill Clinton in 2006, Chris Dodd in 2007, and progressive activist Lee Camp in 2008 delegitimize FOX on the air. But Obama didn't do that, and he suffered as a result.
Excerpts from Obama's FOX interview:
The interview began with a question about Obama's race implying that white people won't vote for him. Instead of "taking FOX on" and saying FOX's questions are premised on Republican talking points, Obama simply answered. So, Wallace kept going asking more than 10 straight race-related questions, all skewed against Obama. (One laughably began with, "I wasn't sure whether I was even going to ask you about your former pastor, Jeremiah Wright, but...") One of these rigged questions got Obama to say, "The fact that he is my former pastor I think makes it a legitimate political issue" resulting in John McCain quoting Obama hours later, hinting to right-wing allies that Rev. Wright is fair game.
FOX also asked a bunch of questions aimed at getting Obama to distance himself from Democrats and progressives. Because Obama didn't "take on" the Republican framing of these questions, Obama was cornered into saying things like, "I think there are a whole host of areas where Republicans in some cases may have a better idea [than Democrats]" and parroting the right-wing caricature of "Chablis-drinking limousine liberals" and boasting about being "fiercely attacked" by bloggers at Daily Kos.
Enough. Democratic politicians, for your own benefit: stop legitimizing FOX.
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
|Unnamed Add-on Delegates||59|
|Video of endorsement.|
In case you're wondering what this means on the wider front, it signals that some are starting to really believe Obama cannot close the deal.
"It's an incredibly strong endorsement because Easley is popular among the blue collar 'Bubba' voters who are Democrats," said David "Mudcat" Saunders, a Democratic consultant who advised former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards and former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner on winning rural voters.Easley had endorsed Edwards for president, but again became a heavily sought superdelegate once Edwards bowed out of the race."He's clean in the culture. Easley's wrecked the Charlotte Motor Speedway doing 150 miles per hour, and Bubba likes that," said Saunders, referring to NASCAR fan Easley's 2003 race car crash. "He's a hunter. He's a strong Second Amendment guy. He gives her great cultural validation in the state of North Carolina." ... ..
FLORIDA VOTER PROTECTION LAWS IN A NUTSHELL
Available now on Advancement Project's website is the revised 2008 "Florida Voter Protection Laws in a Nutshell" publication. Advancement Project produces these publications as a way to distill complex election law for lawyers, advocates, voter registration campaigns and "Get Out the Vote" campaigns. They combine state election law with state regulations, rules, attorney general opinions, and other election materials to provide a comprehensive interpretation of the law and practices that impact elections. While these publications do not cover every provision of state election law, they highlight those provisions which, in our experience, have most impacted the voting rights of minority voters.
Advancement Project publishes these nutshells with local law firms and lawyers as part of our Voter Protection Program. We encourage our partners to use these legal guides in support of local, on the ground voter protection efforts in advance of Election Day.
View the 2008 "Florida Voter Protection Laws in a Nutshell"
Sunday, April 27, 2008
One bonus for Barack Obama (D-IL) as he campaigns in Indiana is that so many friends from his home state can just drive across the state line to help him out.
Then again, it's also a short trip for the occasional hometown pol who has been crossed by Obama, such as one featured guest doing the Hoosier tour today.
Joining Chelsea Clinton and other women leaders to campaign for Hillary Clinton today is Alice Palmer, the former state senator who picked Obama to be her successor back in the mid-90s. When she tried to reclaim her spot, though, Obama got her booted from the ballot.
The day of campaigning culminates tonight with a "Women for Hillary" rally in New Albany. The women plan to talk about Clinton's plans for the economy, job creation and the middle class.
Palmer's story is more familiar in our town it is in Indiana, even in the northwest section of Hoosierland that consumes so much of the Chicago news media. Still, the national press has shown an interest in the early account of Obama playing hardball, and Palmer's presence may remind some of them of the story.
Posted from The Swamp
Broward County Supervisor of Elections invites you
Saturday May 17, 2008
At the Long Key Nature Center
Special guest VIP
Former US Attorney General
VIP Social - $250 4:00pm - 4:30pm
price includes Reception
Reception only- $100
Dessert and Coffee
Live performance by Ellen Buckstel, "They lost my vote."
Catering by "Two Ugly Sisters Ala Cart Catering"
Political advertisement paid for and approved by Adriane Reesey, Democrat for Broward County Supervisor of Elections
The purchase of a ticket for the campaign fundraiser is a contribution to the campaign of Adriane Reesey
Friday, April 25, 2008
FROM: Alexis Herman & Jim Roosevelt, Jr., Co-Chairs
DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee (RBC)
SUBJECT: Meeting AnnouncementMay 31, 2008
DATE: April 25, 2008
Realizing that members have very busy schedules, we wanted to notify you as soon as possible that the RBC will meet on Saturday, May 31, 2008 in Washington, D.C. We are asking members to arrive on Friday, May 30, 2008 in time for a private informal dinner with us. While we expect the RBC meeting to last most of the day on Saturday, we are asking members not to make their departure plans until Sunday.
The main item of business on the Committee's agenda will be the consideration of two pending challenges.
We hope you are able to attend this very important RBC meeting. Further information, including meeting agenda and meeting logistics, will be forwarded to you in the near future.
Please note that this is an official meeting of the RBC. Therefore, we would like to remind members of the attendance requirement established in the Bylaws (Article Two, Section 10.(g)). Members who miss three consecutive RBC meetings are deemed to have resigned from the Committee. Registering a proxy, while important for establishing a quorum and assuring your vote is represented, does not count for the purpose of attendance at a meeting.
Markos: Obama has a higher ceiling, he wins states like Minnesota (and Iowa, Wisconsin, Washington, Oregon, and so on) more easily than Clinton. If "electability" is the measure by which the supers should decide, the numbers are fairly clear. Having better numbers in Florida does Clinton little good if McCain threatens to take away Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan. Those three states have 37 EVs, to Florida's 27.
First of all, Markos seems to have put Michigan in the Obama column. On the basis of what? His strength in labor households? Working people? Catholics?
Secondly, yes, those three states have more than Florida's 27, but that's cherry-pickin' your states. Why doesn't Markos discuss Ohio, where Clinton leads McCain by 5 percentage points and Obama trails by 3? Or Pennsylvania, where Clinton leads by 6 and Obama by 2?
Obama probably wins Colorado where Hillary doesn't, and possibly Virginia as well. Stack that up against Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Ohio--or, while we're at it, Massachusetts, where Hillary leads by 16 and Obama by 2, or a slew of smaller states like West Virginia, Arkansas, Kentucky, and Missouri where Hillary is at least competitive and Obama is not.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Republican Governor Charlie Crist voices opposition of House Health Insurance Plan
"Crist was particularly critical of the House's plan to create Florida Health Choices Inc., a public-private corporation that would administer scaled-down health plans for small businesses." [Palm Beach Post, 4/18/08]
"The House approach, opposed by Crist, would create a so-called "farmers' marketplace" of insurance options -- with the industry setting coverage limits -- that would be available to uninsured workers only through their employers." [Orlando Sentinel Blog, 4/17/08]
Senate unanimously passes Gov. Crist's Cover Florida Plan
"It [SB 2548] passed the Senate unanimously but has been blocked by the more-conservative
House, which is advancing a more insurance-industry- friendly proposal." [Orlando Sentinel, 4/21/08]
"Crist said the corporation, which would be similar to the state's HealthyKids Corp., could add 'another layer in between the people getting the opportunity to get health coverage as soon as possible." [Palm Beach Post, 4/18/08]
"A unanimous nod from the Florida Senate on Wednesday brought Gov. Charlie Crist closer to his goal of offering health insurance to uninsured Floridians." [St. Petersburg Times, 4/17/08]
"At a news conference with medical experts, Gov. Charlie Crist on Thursday emphasized the need for the House to follow the Senate's lead and pass his plan for a "market-driven" approach to finding affordable health coverage for the uninsured." [St. Petersburg Times Blog, 4/17/08]
House Democrats join Senate in supporting Governor Crist's Cover Florida Plan
"Crist's champions were not his fellow Republicans but Democrats, chiefly Reps. Loranne
Ausley and Jack Seiler." [St. Petersburg Times Blog, 4/17/08]
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
After last night's decisive victory in Pennsylvania, more people have voted for Hillary than any other candidate, including Sen. Obama. Estimates vary slightly, but according to Real Clear Politics, Hillary has received 15,095,663 votes to Sen. Obama's 14,973,720, a margin of more than 120,000 votes. ABC News reported this morning that 'Clinton has pulled ahead of Obama' in the popular vote. This count includes certified vote totals in Florida and Michigan." Read more.
The Tide is Turning: "The voters in Pennsylvania have spoken. America is listening. And the tide is turning Despite making an unprecedented financial investment in his Pennsylvania campaign, including millions on negative ads Sen. Obama again failed to win a state that will be vital to a Democratic victory in November." Read more.
$$$: The campaign has raised more than $3.5 million since PA polls closed last night last night's fundraising total the was the strongest ever.
Fighting for You: In last night's victory speech, Hillary told voters, "I'm in this race to fight for you, to fight for everyone who has ever been counted out I need your help to continue this journey. This is your campaign and this is your victory tonight. Your support has meant the difference between winning and losing." Watch here and read it here.
In Case You Missed It: The Washington Post reports that "unable once again to score a knockout, Sen. Barack Obama is likely to make his new negative tone even more negative." Read more.
Closing the Deal? The AP asks: "Why can't Barack Obama close the deal? ...Unfortunately for Obama it's a question that bears repeating The loss, despite a massive cash infusion and robust campaign presence in the state, underscores the persistent problems he's had winning over many of the voters who form the traditional Democratic party base." Read more.
On Tap: Hillary attends an event in Indianapolis, IN today Tomorrow - joined by former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Hugh Shelton - she returns to North Carolina for stops in Jacksonville, Fayetteville, and Asheville. On Friday and Saturday, Hillary campaigns in Indiana.
On the Air: In a new NC Ask Me ad, Hillary responds to veteran David Eichhorn from Hickory, NC: "It is one of the highest obligations of our president and Commander-in- Chief to take care of our veterans. We owe everything to those who have served us." Watch it here "Jobs," airing in IN, emphasizes that "the next president has to begin putting the American people first. Your jobs, your health care, your futures." Watch it here.
Sen. Ronda Storms evolution-questioning bill just passed the Florida Senate by a tight 21-17 margin. The perenially absent Fort Lauderdale Democratic Sen. Mandy Dawson was, well, absent. But so was the punctilious future Senate President Jeff Atwater, R-North Palm Beach, who was on the floor right before the vote.
Sen. Gary Siplin of Orlando was the only D vote in favor, while a handful of Republicans voted against it. Check out the vote here
The PA primary demonstrates that the Jeremiah Wright controversy badly hurt Obama. Contrary to the finger wagging New York Times editorial, "The Low Road to Victory," blaming Hillary for daring to wage a winning campaign in Pennsylvania, Obama was undercut mainly by his own severe problems, especially his 20 year relationship with Wright.
We now know that Obama's Philadelphia speech on race in which he refused to disown Wright was not as the media touted a fabulous success but instead a crashing disaster.
Obama's Wright relationship has permanently alienated white working class voters, Catholics and Jews, among others. And the Republicans know it and are preparing for it.
A new 30 second video produced by a shadowy Republican group, which only contains factual footage, no commentary at all, is headed like a torpedo toward the Democratic Party is it nominates Obama. Every superdelegate should watch this video and explain why they would want every Democrat to bear this burden.
Florida Demands Representation is circulating petitions to have the Florida Primary counted. You can download petitions to sign and mail in for Florida and a National petition for other states. These petitions will be presented to the DNC in June.
Pass it on!
http://www.floridad emandsrepresenta tion.org/ PETITIONS. html
------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- -
DOWNLOAD THE PETITIONS
Simply click on the links below to open and
download the petitions.
Print, sign and mail! It's that easy.
Pass it on!
http://www.floridad emandsrepresenta tion.org/ PETITIONS. html
------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- -
DOWNLOAD THE PETITIONS
Simply click on the links below to open and
download the petitions.
Print, sign and mail! It's that easy.
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Monday, April 21, 2008
Sunday, April 20, 2008
Howard Dean was on Wolf Blitzer's show Friday, and Drudge picked up his admonition to the superdelegates with the splashy headline: "Dean To Delegates: Decide Now." In the interview, Dean says that he wants the superdelegates to begin "voting" now. "We cannot give up two or three months of active campaigning and healing time," he said. "We've got to know who our nominee is."
Unfortunately for the party, Dean is in no position to tell the superdelegates when to decide. The reason? The chairmanship of the Democratic National Committee carries with it very little political power - certainly not enough to sway superdelegates.
If you listen to Dean's interview, he says that some superdelegates have already "voted," and that he wants the rest to "vote" soon. This is not how the superdelegate system works. Dean knows that, The fact is that the superdelegates have only endorsed candidates so far. They vote in Denver. Not before. What they say today does not necessarily constrain their votes in Denver. So, we should expect that, if the race remains close through the summer, both Obama and Clinton will work to "flip" superdelegates
Thursday, April 17, 2008
Expert guest post by Joseph C. Wilson
originally published on Huffington Post
originally published on Huffington Post
Senator Obama's ill-conceived remarks likening small town Americans to embittered guns-and-God bigots have triggered a justifiable furor. Not only are the remarks insulting, but also factually incorrect.
As it happens, at the same event in San Francisco, Senator Obama made other remarks, equally startling, insulting our Foreign Service, Intelligence Officers, members of Congress who provide oversight, and friendly governments. Like his comments about small town Americans, Obama demonstrated a cavalier disregard for Americans who every day get up determined to make this a better country, whether running the general store in a small town, or representing our national security interests in a foreign country.
This is what Obama said:
Experience in Washington in not knowledge of the world. This I know. When Senator Clinton brags, 'I've met leaders from 80 countries,' I know what those trips are like. I've been on them. You go from the airport to the embassy. There's a group of children who do a native dance. You meet with the C.I.A. station chief and the embassy and they give you a briefing. You go take a tour of a plant that with the assistance of USAID has started something. And then you go.
Obama's arrogance and contempt for career professionals in the national security community is palpable. His contempt reminds me of something Bill Kristol, the editor of the right wing war mongering Weekly Standard, said in a debate with me shortly after the launching of the Iraq War in 2003. We were in Midland, Texas, Laura Bush's home town, and Kristol was asked if he had ever spent time in the Middle East region, to which he responded "I've always believed on the ground experience is highly overrated." That callous disregard for professional expertise and experience is, of course, one of the reasons we so badly miscalculated the consequences of our actions in Iraq. That arrogance is no less offensive coming from Senator Obama. And it is no less wrongheaded.
Foreign Service Officers, Intelligence operatives, and USAID development experts carry out the mandate of our government to represent the interests of the United States, to understand the dynamics in a foreign society so as to better advise our own government on policies to be pursued, and work to improve relations between the United States and the country in question. The world is a dangerous and precarious place, and there are serious issues that constantly need to be engaged with foreign governments. It requires hard work and diligence. We ignore or denigrate that work at our peril.
Senator Obama should know better. After all, in his professional capacity as Chairman of the Senate subcommittee responsible for Europe and NATO, he was in charge of ensuring Congressional oversight of the administration's efforts to generate greater NATO support for operations in Afghanistan. The fact that, by his own admission, he was too busy running for president to convene a single meeting of that subcommittee, should not absolve him of responsibility for acquiring at least some understanding of and respect for the work of career professionals who dedicate their lives to the service of their country.
I was one of those public servants for twenty-three years. My colleagues and I, whether in the Foreign Service, the Military or the Central Intelligence Agency, were and are motivated by a commitment to serve the values that have made this country free and secure, values that are enshrined in our founding documents, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. In exercising our responsibilities, we were careful to ensure that members of Congress were kept abreast and made partners in our efforts to keep America safe. When they visited our posts, we went out of our way to provide substantive briefings, meetings with senior host government officials, trips to USAID projects so elected representatives could see for themselves what the United States was doing to assist citizens of the recipient country improve their lot in life. And yes, there were cultural events, to broaden the perspectives of the visitors and to show respect for the indigenous culture they were being introduced to. Our goal in this was to ensure that those who represent the American people in Congress better understood what we were doing because more knowledge leads to better decisions. Judgment is not intuitive, as Senator Obama asserts; from my hard-won experience as a Foreign Service Officer, that judgment is learned.
Obama has made plain that he is not bothered in the slightest about belittling the work of Foreign Service and CIA Officers serving overseas, often in dangerous circumstances, any more than he is about denigrating Americans from small towns or blaming democrats in Congress, and especially Hillary Clinton, for George W. Bush's war in Iraq. It was not ironic that he made both comments at the same fundraiser in San Francisco. The contempt is consistent.
Trashing Congress, small town Americans, and career national security professionals, while befriending Jeremiah Wright and Weather Underground terrorist Bill Ayers may be a winning electoral strategy. Who knows? Time will tell. But I suspect that many small town Americans are as offended as my professional colleagues and I by this display of contempt from one who seeks our consent to govern.
Hillary dominates Philadelphia focus group. "NYDIA HAN: The real take away is this. We now know who won the debate according to our focus group. Take a look. Senator Clinton is the debate winner, at least according to our focus group. 23% believe Senator Obama won while 50% believed Senator Clinton won." [WPVI Post-Debate Analysis, 4/16/08]
ABC News' Rick Klein 'Clinton is back to the strong presence we saw early in the cycle.' [ABC News Political Radar, 4/16/08]
NBC News' Chuck Todd Obama 'did not have a good night.' [MSNBC Post-Debate Analysis, 4/16/08]
NBC News' Chuck ToddObama's answer on Ayers and the flag 'were simply weak.' "His answer on Ayers and the flag question were simply weak; He seemed unprepared for them; Kinda surprising because he normally has a decent rant against "old politics" and yet "old politics" questions seemed to stump him." [NBC First Read, 4/16/08]
The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder [T]here's no way Obama could fared worse. [The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder, 4/16/08]
Washington Post' Chris Cillizza Obama 'struggled quite a bit' when asked about Rev. Wright. " He struggled quite a bit more when asked to answer for Wright, his former pastor." [Washington Post, The Fix, 4/16/08]
New York Times' Katharine Seeyle: Hillary's 'in her element as she goes into details.' "She's becoming expansive, seemingly in her element as she goes into details; Mr. Obama does not look as thrilled to be still standing there." [New York Times, The Caucus, 4/16/08]
Talking Points Memo's Josh Marshall Hillary 'certainly seems more self-assured.' "She certainly seems more self-assured on the Iran question than Obama did. The question of extending an American security umbrella to Israel is very dicey. And he could clearly see he was on delicate territory." [Talking Points Memo, 4/16/08]
Philadelphia Inquirer blog 'Obama is again less certain, and rambles a bit.' "Obama is again less certain, and rambles a bit when asked about the Washington D.C. gun ban. Gibson asks him to deny that he has ever advocated a complete ban on hand guns in 1996. Obama says no. But whatever the truth, no other answer is possible." [Philadelphia Inquirer Blog, 4/16/08]
NBC News' Matthew Berger Obama 'tried to have it both ways' with Israel. "Obama's answer on an Iranian attack on Israel tried to seem to have it both ways: highlight his support for Israel but not lock him into treating an attack on Israel like an attack on the U.S. But it may have looked more like a no because it wasn't a firm yes. Clinton's answer seemed more direct." [NBC First Read, 4/16/08]
Surprising, for over a year they have been giving Obama a FREE ride.
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Washington, D.C. U.S. Representative Ron Klein (FL-22) today introduced legislation expressing the Sense of House of Representatives that all future funding provided by the United States to the government of Iraq for reconstruction, training for security forces and fuel be provided as a loan, rather than a grant. The legislation also requires the Iraqi government to utilize its own budget surplus for reconstruction projects before reconstruction aid from the United States is spent.
"Whether you support the Iraq war strategy or not, we can all agree that when it comes to the $600 billion in American taxpayer dollars that we have spent over the last five years, enough is enough," Klein said. "The Iraqi government is sitting on the second-largest oil reserve in the world and expecting a multi-billion dollar budget windfall this year, yet the United States continues to finance their reconstruction. This defies common sense. American taxpayers myself included are not willing to foot the bill any longer."
Klein's legislation is the House companion to a bipartisan Sense of the Senate resolution introduced last week by Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson, Maine Senator Susan Collins and Indiana Senator Evan Bayh. The bipartisan, bicameral legislation is a common-sense proposal to require the Iraqi government to take responsibility for investing in the reconstruction of their own country.
"The United States is spending $339 million a day in Iraq, a figure that should stagger the sensibilities of every American," Klein said. "My colleagues and I are standing up to say that we can no longer continue to pour billions into Iraq at the expense of critical priorities here at home. The amount of money we spend in Iraq each day could house 48,000 homeless veterans, hire over 2,000 new Border Patrol guards for a year or give 2.6 million uninsured Americans access to health care. It is time for real fiscal responsibility, and that means ending the blank checks to Iraq."
In addition, the United States spends $153 million every month on fuel in Iraq, at a cost of approximately $3.23 per gallon; Iraqis pay just $1.30 per gallon for fuel. With the price of oil per barrel continuing to rise, the Iraqi government is expecting a budget windfall this year of up to $60 billion, while at the same time, America is facing growing debt and record deficits. If the Iraqi people and Iraqi government want the U.S. military and the American people to continue to support a stabilization effort, they must stand up and pay for it.
Last week Hillary and Obama were tied, this week Hillary is mopping up Obama with his own ass. Having nothing to do with Obama's bashing of the middle class, Obama's losses have more to do with Pennsylvania is sooooooooo tired of the constant TV and phone calls and the hate and vile attitude of the Obama supporters.
Pennsylvania Democratic Primary Preference
Hillary Clinton leads Barack Obama 48% to 44% among men (45% of likely Democratic primary voters). Among women, Clinton leads 64% to 31%.
Clinton leads 64% to 29% among white voters (82% of likely Democratic primary voters).
Obama leads 79% to 18% among African American voters (14% of likely Democratic primary voters).
Clinton leads 52% to 43% among voters age 18 to 49 (50% of likely Democratic primary voters) and Clinton leads 62% to 31% among voters age 50 and older.
2008 - A Year to Win
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
You can choose to attend a Camp EqualityTM training in Orlando on May 2-4 or in Fort Lauderdale on May 9-11.
Whether you are just getting involved in the electoral process or are a campaign professional, Camp EqualityTM can help you learn how to become more effective at advocating your causes and your candidates. We will offer two training tracks:
- Fundamentals Track: Designed to give you the step by step fundamentals necessary to be successful at the grassroots level. Topics will include: planning, recruitment, volunteer coordinating, event fundraising, earned media, and creating a local activist plan. You will learn the basic skills that are essential to putting your issue campaign or local committee in the best position to win.
- Advanced Track: For our more seasoned activist or campaign professionals. This track offers the fundamentals of political campaign management. During your sessions you will learn advanced techniques of fundraising, field organizing, media relations, volunteer coordination, targeting, candidate relations, and the latest campaign technology.
As goes Florida, so goes the nation. If you have ever thought about volunteering for a campaign or already have experience in campaigns, we hope that you will take advantage of this excellent opportunity to gain valuable knowledge that you can apply to all aspects of campaign operations. Registration for Camp EqualityTM is $50 and includes a one-year HRC membership.
If you have questions, please contact Toby at Toby.Quaranta@hrc.org, or at (202) 459-3307.
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Paid Political Advertisement sponsored and paid for in-kind by Human Rights Campaign, 1640 Rhode Island Ave. NW, Washington DC 20036.
Approved by Florida Red and Blue, Inc. and Fairness for All Families.
The Donna Brazile attempted coup of the Democratic party is meeting unexpected stiff resistance from union members in two states that the DNC doesn't care about. Politico is reporting that union members from Florida and Michigan are picketing outside of DNC headquarters today. This is the first of what may become a routine daily activity from disenfranchised voters.
They're complaining that the DNC's refusal to seat Florida delegates will prevent dozens of union members who are delegates from attending the convention, and they want DNC Chairman Howard Dean to resolve the dispute.
And being realistic, the unions are comparing the DNC 48 state strategy to something union members everywhere fully understand: A Lock Out.
"We're getting locked out," said Williams as he and the other union members picketed the DNC. Williams estimated that as many as a dozen building trade union members, and 30 union members overall, would be part of the Florida contingent to the Democratic convention.
The only trouble I see with this analogy is that it is the DNC that has gone on strike. They are no longer working for all Americans. The DNC message is clear: When it comes to expanding Democratic prosperity nationwide, Florida and Michigan need not apply.
After the meeting with DNC Executive Director Tom McMahon and Political Director David Boundy, several of the picketers said they appreciated the time and attention, but remained unsatisfied with what they were being told.Mike Williams, president of the Florida Building & Construction Trades Council, was similarly disappointed."Their response was basically that they are still in the mode of trying to get something done," said Williams." "Frankly they did not have any more to tell us than the feel-good press releases of (DNC Chairman Howard) Dean and the congressional delegation."UpdateAttend a All Expense Paid Rally on April 30th 2008A private individual is funding a protest to be held April 30 in Washington, DC.All expenses will be paid for including hotel, transportation, and meals.We need 50 people per bus - the busses will leave from any location in which we can get 50 peopleThe buses will leave April 28th and the protest will be in front of the DNC on April 30th - the busses will leave from Washington April 30th - you will be back in town May 1 -I know many of you work but this is very important and again ALL EXPENSES ARE BEING PAID FOR!If you can attend, please send Jim Hanrahan an email.Please pass this on to others and ask them to respond to Jim Hanrahan via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call him at 888.599.1586
Will The Republican State House and Senate now, be safe for Republicans, with Obama as the nominee?
Florida Survey of 500 Likely Voters
April 10, 2008
April 10, 2008
John McCain (R) vs. Hillary Clinton (D)
|John McCain (R)||44%|
|Hillary Clinton (D)||45%|
John McCain (R) vs. Barack Obama (D)
|John McCain (R)||53%|
|Barack Obama (D)||38%|
Sunday, April 13, 2008
"Is Obama's Campaign Over?," asks Powerline's John H. Hinderaker.
Do you believe that Senator Barack Obama's comments reveal his elitist attitude toward every hardworking American?"
THIS IS WHY you can’t let a bunch of young kids and latte elites be the ones who get to select the Democratic nominee! You have to be able to appeal to the bedrock Americans who comprise the majority of the reliable voters in this counry.
Hillary can get those “bedrock” votes. Barack cannot.
Saturday, April 12, 2008
You go into these small towns in Pennsylvania and, like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing's replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not.
And it's not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy toward people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."
That stink you smell, is the cow pile, on the bottom of Obama's shoe.
Friday, April 11, 2008
LaFontaine raised $16,735 in contributions this quarter, compared to Scott Newton's $11,700 and Gwendolyn Clark-Reed's $9,085.
For the race thus far, LaFontaine has raised $65,959 in cash, loans and in-kind contributions, compared to
's $41,304 and Clark-Reed's $33,040. Newton
LaFontaine's total was boosted by campaign appearances with
Rep. Barney Frank, chair of the House Financial Services Committee, who spent a day in January at several events with LaFontaine. US
"The outpouring of support for my campaign has been amazing," LaFontaine said. "We're on track to win this seat during the August primary!"
A resident of
since he was six years old, Mark LaFontaine has been active in the local community for years. He is national treasurer of American Veterans for Equal Rights (AVER) and president of the local Gold Coast chapter, the largest in the organization. LaFontaine is also a member of the Broward County Veterans Council, and is the only veteran in the race, having served in the US Coast Guard. Broward County
Owner of a successful accounting practice based in
, LaFontaine is a board member of Oakland Park Oakland Park Main Street, which is guiding that city's development, and also has been a member of the Fort Lauderdale Audit Advisory Board, which oversees the city's finances.
Florida House District 92 includes parts of
Deerfield Beach, North Lauderdale, Oakland Park, Lazy Lake, Poinsettia Heights, Pompano Beach, Park and Wilton Manors. Tamarac, Victoria
# # #
Thursday, April 10, 2008
Wednesday, April 09, 2008
With hundreds of prison and community safety jobs on the chopping block, along with cuts aimed at thousands of catastrophically ill Floridians including transplant patients, tens of thousands of elderly and disabled dependent on the state for health care and prescription drug help, and scores of child abuse investigators, Senate Democrats on Wednesday offered a number of amendments designed to throw the state a financial lifeline.
Senate Republicans threw it back.
"I am appalled at the indifference we saw here today," said Senate Democratic Leader Steven Geller ( D-Cooper City ). "These amendments didn't raise taxes, they didn't burden property owners, and they didn't expand bureaucracy. All they did was wean some very wealthy corporations from the legislative coddling they've enjoyed for years. It's time they joined the rest of us and paid their fair share."
The Democratic lawmakers conceded that the offered measures would not have been able to avert all of the cuts Republicans are backing, but they would have blunted much of the pain, they said.
Their defeated amendments included the following:
· The first installment of $70 million earmarked for CSX a controversial plan to underwrite with public tax dollars the railroad's new distribution hub in Central Florida would have been diverted back to the public. In particular, under the amendment sponsored by Senators Al Lawson (D-Tallahassee) , Arthenia Joyner (D-Tampa) and Nan Rich (D-Weston), the money would have been earmarked as follows:
o Excellent Teaching Program -- $9 million
o Early Learning Coalitions -- $9.6 million
o Children's Medical Services -- $7.5 million
o Protective Investigators -- $6.3 million
o Community Care for the Elderly -- $1.6 million
o County Health Departments -- $13.4 million
o Public Defenders -- $6.8 million
o State Attorneys -- $15.8 million
· An amendment by Senators Geller, Rich, Joyner and Tony Hill (D-Jacksonville) that would have closed the loophole allowing certain corporations to escape paying the real estate taxes the majority of Floridians pay when buying or selling real estate. The expected $50 million in recurring revenue would have restored to duty 664 correction officers the equivalent of approximately two fully staffed prisons and 294 probation officers currently targeted for layoff.
· An amendment sponsored by Senators Geller, Ted Deutch (D-Boca Raton), Rich, Joyner and Larcenia Bullard (D-Miami) closing a corporate income tax escape hatch known as "combined reporting" benefiting mostly out-of-state corporations and disadvantaging Florida-based ones. Similar measures have passed other large states such as Texas . The amendment would have raised approximately $364 million annually and been committed to:
o Medically Needy --$152 million
o MEDS AD -- $148 million
o Nursing Home Rate Reimbursement -- $64 million
"A transplant patient's struggle to survive shouldn't be doomed in order to protect special interests' profiteering," said Geller. " Florida 's ability to probe child abuse cases, or assist impoverished senior citizens obtain life-saving drugs, or keep dangerous criminals behind bars or in check within our communities shouldn't be sacrificed while giant corporations continue to get a free ride.
"We offered a way to protect the people's welfare. They chose to protect corporate welfare."
Florida Senate Democratic Office
washingtonpost.com: Faces of the Fallen: Florida
Q: The Florida Politics Blog
The Buzz: Florida Politics | Tampabay.com - St. Petersburg Times
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