N.C. Dem Attorney General Roy Cooper: State Will No Longer Defend Same-Sex Marriage Ban

Roy Cooper, the attorney general of North Carolina Attorney — and one of the few Democratic statewide officials to survive the 2010 tea party electoral sweep that put Republicans in control of North Carolina for the first time since the 1870s — announced this week that his department will no longer defend the state’s ban on marriage equality. The decision comes after judges in the federal appeals court whose jurisdiction includes North Carolina struck down a similar ban in Virginia:

Clueless: Rep. Curt Clawson, R-Fla., Mistakes Committee Witnesses from U.S. Govt for Foreign Nationals

In case you missed it, check out this episode from a Republican-led House committee last week in which Rep. Curt Clawson from Bonita Springs, Fla., embarrasses himself, his family, his state, his party and the nation. It’s not just that he was completely and utterly wrong in his assumptions, his wrongness is compounded by the smug sneer he wears throughout his exchange with the witnesses.

As the Miami Herald put it: “Flori-duh Rep. Curt Clawson thinks U.S. officials of Indian descent represent Indian govt“:

Photo Op: Mom-Jeans Wearing Rick Perry in Helicopter Gunship Hunting Refugee Children

This photo is making the rounds but I’ve had trouble tracking down the source. It appears to show Texas Republican Gov. Rick Perry in a helicopter gunship leaning on a powerful-looking weapon aimed at the ground. He is scanning the field below presumably, given recent headlines, seeking to target and shoot refugee children who are attempting to cross the U.S. border from Mexico. A commenter somewhere on Facebook pointed out that the gun Perry is leaning on is not loaded, but I can’t verify that either.

But check out how he’s dressed and posed for the photo op. He is shown in profile — jaw clenched, with his baseball cap on backwards and his “I’m smart” glasses removed — wearing a flight jacket with mom jeans. His right hand is gripping the weapons but his left hand is carefully draped over the gun to display his Aggie ring (shown in photo to the right).

Update: Mystery solved. See comments.

Let’s Do Math! Republicans, Please Grab a Pencil

Former Pres. George W. Bush on one of his many breaks, which often involved falling off a mountain bike, falling off a Segway, strumming a guitar while New Orleans drowned, and choking on pretzels.

The Obama family is on vacation. That means it’s time for Republicans and tea partiers to take a break from obstructing legislation, nomination approvals, and any other work in Congress (including suing the president for taking appropriate executive action to counter their inaction) to express ginned-up outrage that the people’s business won’t be done if the president takes a few days off.

It’s also time for the rest of us to do some math, based on figures researched by Politifact’s Truthometer:

  • Number of vacation days, in whole or part, enjoyed by Pres. Obama at this point in his term, which on July 20, 2014 happened to be exactly six years and seven months: 92
  • Number of vacation days, in whole or part, enjoyed by Pres. George W. Bush at the same point in his term: 367

Let’s put these numbers in context.

Captured on Video: Why Rich Tea Partiers Make Such Bad Elected Officials

FOX 13 News

If this video — from a FOX affiliate! — doesn’t explain why Florida Democrats and independents are willing to embrace the previous flip-floppin’ governor (Charlie Crist) to get rid of the current one, nothing will.

Warning: Rick Scott’s countenance will haunt your sleep.

Judge Overturns Florida’s Ban on Gay Marriage in Monroe County

The Miami Herald is reporting this story:

Monroe County Circuit Judge Luis Garcia overturned Florida’s 2008 constitutional gay-marriage ban on Thursday, and ordered that two Key West bartenders and other gay couples seeking to wed be allowed to marry.

The judge ordered the Monroe County Clerk’s Office to begin issuing marriage licenses to gay couples Tuesday morning.

“The court is aware that the majority of voters oppose same-sex marriage, but it is our country’s proud history to protect the rights of the individual, the rights of the unpopular and rights of the powerless, even at the cost of offending the majority,” Garcia wrote in his opinion, released about 1 p.m. Thursday.

The judge gave the clerk’s office several days to prepare “in consideration of… anticipated rise in activity.”

It was unclear early Thursday afternoon whether the state will appeal the ruling. The decision applies only to Monroe County, because it was filed in front of a state judge who has jurisdiction only in the county where he sits. A judge in Miami-Dade County has yet to rule in a similar case.

We’re Number One! But Did the Voters Cheat?

The Florida sigil created by anthonybooyay

A recent pronouncement that Florida is the scariest of all 50 states leaves us conflicted. I mean, hey, we’re number one at something! But looking closely at the criteria used, you can’t help but find the competition rigged.

Realtors awarded this distinction, based on 15 things that incite fear, and placed Florida first in three categories: hurricanes, tornados, and shark attacks.

Here at the real estate search site Estately we know there are hundreds of worries when choosing where to buy a home, so to help house hunters make a more informed decision we’ve mapped out where Americans’ darkest fears are most readily found.

But do realtors know their natural disasters? If they did, they’d give Missouri the first place ranking for tornados. Joplin, anyone? Instead, Missouri was given first place in meth labs, an enterprise usually associated with Alaska, or since Breaking Bad, New Mexico.

Earthquakes didn’t make the list. If they had, Oklahoma, which thanks to fracking recently surpassed California in temblors, would excel. Mud slides, another California specialty, were also not even counted. The nearest California got to a category header was number two — for spiders. And number six for dentists.

GOP Voted to Delay Employer Mandate One Year Ago
Now they're preparing to impeach the president for delaying the employer mandate

The infographic above shows how House Republicans voted last July on H.R. 2667, a bill to require Pres. Obama to delay implementation of the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate.

Now, just one year later, these same House Republicans are suing Pres. Obama in order to lay the groundwork to impeach him on grounds that he delayed individual mandate.

This is, of course, hypocrisy piled on top of hypocrisy. The individual mandate, which forms the basis of the Affordable Care Act — and which Republicans now despise — was a Republican invention. It was developed at the Heritage Foundation, a right-wing think tank that has sponsored Rush Limbaugh’s show, and first implemented by the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, in 2006 when he was governor of Massachusetts.

Here is a repost of Romney himself describing how he worked with Heritage to come up with the plan that is the basis for Obamacare:

Solar Freakin’ Roadways Can Change the World

If you’re down in the dumps and worried, feeling like we might be witnessing the end of the world as we’ve known it and there’s nothing we can really do about global warming and climate change, then you’ve got to watch this video. Seriously. Watch it now.

Obama Derangement Syndrome Alive and Well in Nebraska

The epitome of Cornhusker political commentary: A zombie president effigy, overalls and an outhouse.

What’s a Fourth of July parade in Norfolk, Neb., without a racist, redneck float? The epitome of Cornhusker political commentary featured a pickup truck with a zombielike effigy of President Obama in overalls outside an outhouse with the words “Obama Presidential Library” on it.

To their credit, the commentators did spell all the words correctly, which means they are probably not Tea Party members.

The float apparently was approved by the parade organizers, the Odd Fellows Club, since it had an official float number in the windshield.

Enumerati

  • 57%

    Of American voters would not want President Obama to campaign with them if they were running for office this year, while 41% said they would, according to a new Fox News poll.

  • 8%

    Amount of the $10 million raised since 2010 by the Conservative Strikeforce that actually went to candidates. More than $9 million of the loot was paid to the fundraisers, Fox Detroit reports.

  • 65% to 33%

    Margin by which a majority of Americans oppose impeaching President Obama and also oppose House Speaker John Boehner’s lawsuit against the president by 57% to 41%, a new CNN poll finds. In addition, a majority disagree by 52% to 45% that Obama gone too far in expanding executive power.

Poetic Justice

Remember when she was armed, dangerous, in flannel?
Well now she’s assumed the news reporter’s mantel.
So we can be perpetually annoyed
By someone who’s actually unemployed.
Just tune in to the new Sarah Palin Channel.

“Poetic Justice, Volume I: The 2012 Presidential Campaign” is Buck Banks' wickedly funny collection of satirical political limericks that were originally published on Pensito Review. While having a decidedly progressive bent, Volume 1 is an equal-opportunity dispenser of poetic justice to both Democrats and Republicans.

»  Download the Ebook

Verbatim

  • All this talk of impeaching the president is the stupidest Republican political strategy so far this century.

    — Charlie Hurt, in an op-ed in the Washington Times.

  • What happens is they’re like an Ebola virus that spreads. And if you can keep it contained with this bunch of people that really hate the government, OK, I respect their position. But when the virus spreads and they then have a bunch of people all nervous that if they vote the way they really think they should vote then bad things are going to happen, that messes up the process.

    — Former Rep. Steve LaTourette (R), quoted by the Wall Street Journal, on the conservative groups that demand ideological purity.

  • It would be one thing if all of this early activity and attention in Iowa resulted in a smarter electorate, better candidates or a more authentic version of democracy. But in general, the quaint ‘retail’ settings of Iowa diners and New Hampshire living rooms are treated mostly as media sound stages, places where reporters report on how many other reporters showed up… As a result, these scenes have become backdrops for set pieces that blur into an anesthetizing noise: So-and-so has been to Iowa five times; some other so-and-so is ‘thinking about’ running for president; and here’s yet another picture of yet another so-and-so looking a voter right in the eyes and telling him the truth about something or other, as the discerning voters here insist.

    — Mark Leibovich, writing in the New York Times.

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