Josh Duggar has left the Family Research Council in the lurch,
And the lobbyist’s own reputation has been besmirched.
The odious churl
Molested his sisters and girls,
Thus single-handedly changing the definition of “family research.”
Five years after passage of the Affordable Care Act, the metrics point to success: the percentage of Americans who are uninsured has fallen dramatically, the runaway growth of healthcare costs has slowed, family budgets are more secure and, most importantly, lives are being saved. At an event on Wednesday marking the ACA’s fifth anniversary, Pres. Obama addressed these and the ACA’s other successes — and even pointed out the fundamental paradox of the GOP’s contrived opposition to it: The ACA was based on their own plan.
“[The] Affordable Care Act pretty much was their plan before I adopted it,” the president said, “based on conservative, market-based principles developed by the Heritage Foundation and supported by Republicans in Congress, and deployed by a guy named Mitt Romney in Massachusetts to great effect. If they want to take credit for this law, they can. I’m happy to share it.”
While many mainstream news outlets reported that Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) was the first Republican to officially declare his candidacy for president in the 2016 election Monday, he’s actually 197th or more down the line, according to the Federal Election Commission. Indeed, as of yesterday, Cruz had not filed a Statement of Candidacy form with the FEC yet (he has 15 days from his public declaration to do so).
It’s not a high bar for entry into the race, however. One must either have raised $5,000 in campaign contributions, spent $5,000 on one’s campaign or designated someone else — a committee — to raise and/or spend $5,000 on one’s behalf.
Our perennial favorite candidate, Paul Chehade, has been in the race since 2013. He’s joined by, to judge on names alone, some rather quirky folks with aspirations to high executive office.
Did you notice? When Canadian Ted Cruz launched his U.S. presidential campaign in Lynchburg, Va., yesterday, there was something conspicuously absent on his lapel. An American flag pin.
Conservatives have made it clear in years past that among candidates for president there is no greater symbol of patriotism than wearing an American flag pin. In fact, in 2012, Joseph Farah, publisher of World Net Daily, said that when a candidate does not wear an American flag pin, it is “a metaphor for his utter contempt for everything American.”
Sen. Ted Cruz made it official yesterday. He’s running for president. It’s fair to say he has zero chance of winning his party’s nomination, much less the general election. It’s further fair to say he’s in the race for the same reason that Newt Gingrich teased a run for the presidency for so many cycles before jumping in — and for the same reason that Mike Huckabee, Herman Cain, Michele Bachmann, Alan Keyes and others have run — to sell books and/or land a hosting gig on Fox or hate radio.
The twist here is that Ted Cruz was born in Canada — Calgary, Alberta, in 1970, to be precise. His mother was an American citizen, but his father was a Cuban national — and, worse, a member of Fidel Castro’s Communist Party.
There’s a new standard for judging the success of Pres. Obama’s initiatives: Every single last soul in America must be doing great before we can claim progress.
Don’t believe it? Can you count the number of times you’ve heard news reported this way?
Pundit: “Well yes, Freemont, unemployment continues to fall, month in and month out, but if you’re a person who is still looking for a job and can’t find one, then you’re not feeling any improvement.”
Let me correct that. Big, super-irrelevant duh.
Facts are facts, and numbers are numbers. Whether “you’re the person” for whom things aren’t getting better doesn’t change the fact that THINGS ARE GETTING BETTER.
This Republican and tea party tactic of dismissing Pres. Obama’s proven successes by noting the exceptions has gone mainstream.
On a swing into South Carolina last week in his never-ending but never-gonna-happen campaign to win the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum proved again that he is a political hack who lacks the gravitas — and class — required to be president.
During a Q&A session at a birther, anti-Muslim summit, Santorum said nothing during a two-and-a-half minute rant by Virginia Ellisor, a self-described “retired teacher, lifelong political activist and lifelong resident of South Carolina,” who laced her comments with a series of ridiculous allegations against the president — that Pres. Obama is a “communist dictator,” that he is “not a citizen,” and that he is “trying to destroy the United States.”
Getting to specifics about the latter accusation, Ellisor cited a recent alleged attempt by the president to destroy an American city.
Now that they’ve taken control of Congress, Republicans are wielding power much the same way they did in the Clinton era and for the six years afterward when they controlled the White House and Congress under George W. Bush: ineptly — ex. 1, 2, 3, etc.
Then as now, it’s clear that the only thing Republicans do very well is inflame the media with bogus scandals — which is a handy way to distract attention from their ineptitude. They are doing this with their usual aplomb, and considerable success, in the matter of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server to send emails.
Clinton has said she deleted about 50,000 emails that dealt with personal matters, citing her daughter’s wedding and her mother’s funeral as examples. All the correspondence pertaining to official business was turned over to archived by State. The deletion of the emails, though perfectly legal, has excited House Republicans, including Speaker John Boehner, who has announced plans to deploy House committees to investigate what might aptly be called Servergate.
Leave it to Al Jazeera America to give a little lesson in international relations to the 47 asshats who signed the now infamous letter to Iran threatening to obviate any agreement on that country’s nuclear designs. It’s worth a read, since I haven’t seen a similar explainer in the capitol press corp’s output.
Here’s a sample:
Beyond the amusing inaccuracies about U.S. parliamentary order, it seems there are some features of the nuclear negotiations that the signatory senators don’t fully understand — not only on the terms of the deal, but also on who would be party to an agreement.
There are no negotiations on Iran’s “nuclear-weapons program” because the world’s intelligence agencies (including those of the U.S. and Israel) do not believe Iran is currently building nuclear weapons, nor has it made a strategic decision to use its civilian nuclear infrastructure to produce a bomb. An active Iranian nuclear-weapons program would render moot the current negotiations, because Iran would be in fundamental violation of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
Scott Walker is not even a candidate for president yet — officially — but he’s already received his first celebrity endorsement. Scott Baio, the actor who portrayed the character Chachi on “Happy Days” and the spinoff “Joanie Loves Chachi” has come out with a full-throated endorsement of the Wisconsin governor.
According to Politico, Baio’s endorsement of Walker was expressed in a tweet:
“Gov. Walker sounds a lot like President Reagan. #WalkerFor Pres,” the tweet read, with a picture of the actor posing alongside Walker.
Walker tweeted back Wednesday, writing: “Thanks! We both love Reagan, I’m flattered,” along with the hashtag #ChachiandWalkerLoveReagan.
For the first time since Gallup began tracking it in 1999, there are now as many Americans who describe their views on social issues as “liberal” as there are who describe them as “conservative,” the Washington Post reports. “It’s been a long and slow crawl, but Americans have steadily become more liberal on social issues without much interruption — except for a brief dip when President Obama first took office in 2009. Today, it’s tied at 31 percent. Back in 1999, it was about two-to-one conservative over liberal.”
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s (D) approval rating — an all-time low — with 59% who do not approve of his performance, according to a new Siena Research Institute survey.
Of Americans say congressional Republicans are not keeping the promises they made during the campaign, while just 23% say they are, according to a new national survey by Pew Research Center. Nearly four in 10 (37%) say the new Congress has accomplished less than they expected, while 4% say it has accomplished more than expected. About half (53%) say its accomplishments are in line with what they expected.
Amount the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell the day after the series finale of “Mad Men.” A study of 165 TV series finales shows that the wave of negative mood caused by the end of a popular and beloved show reduces the net demand for risky assets and decreases aggregate stock returns, says Gabriele M. Lepori of Copenhagen Business School. Specifically, if the number of viewers of a finale is 1 standard deviation above Lepori’s sample average, stock returns fall approximately 25 basis points the next day, all else constant. The finale of the drama “Mad Men” drew 3.3 million live and same-day viewers.
Of about 30 people who worked on Carly Fiorina’s failed 2010 California Senate campaign told Reuters they would not work for her again. “Fiorina, once one of America’s most powerful businesswomen, is now campaigning for the Republican nomination in 2016. The reason: for more than four years, Fiorina – who has an estimated net worth of up to $120 million – didn’t pay them, a review of Federal Election Commission records shows.”
Josh Duggar has left the Family Research Council in the lurch,
We are at the water’s edge of the argument that mainstream Christian teaching is hate speech, because today we’ve reached the point in our society where if you do not support same-sex marriage, you are labeled a homophobe and a hater. … So what’s the next step after that? After they’re done going after individuals, the next step is to argue that the teachings of mainstream Christianity, the catechism of the Catholic Church, is hate speech.
— Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), telling the Christian Broadcasting Network that Christianity faces a “real and present danger” from same-sex marriage supporters who cast opponents as intolerant.
If the 2016 GOP nominee gets no better than Romney’s 17 percent of the nonwhite vote, he or she would need 65 percent of the white vote to win, a level achieved in modern times only by Ronald Reagan in his 1984 landslide. Bush’s 2004 winning formula — 26 percent of the nonwhite vote and 58 percent of the white vote — would be a losing formula in 2016, given population changes. … The 2016 electorate, demographically speaking, will be worse for Republicans than 2012. And unless Republicans can begin winning more of the nonwhite vote, the 2020 election will be worse for the party than the 2016 election. And 2024 will be worse than, well, you get the idea.
— The Fix
Catholic Republicans are developing a pope problem. Earlier this month, Francis recognized Palestinian statehood. This summer, he’s going to issue an encyclical condemning environmental degradation. And in September, just as the GOP primary race heats up, Francis will travel to Washington to address Congress on climate change. … Francis may be popular with the general public, but key Republican primary constituencies — hawks, climate-change skeptics and religious conservatives, including some Catholics, are wary of the pope’s progressivism.
I would like to wish everyone, including all haters and losers (of which, sadly, there are many) a truly happy and enjoyable Memorial Day!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 24, 2015
With today’s vote, we have disclosed who we are: a generous, compassionate, bold and joyful people.
— Ireland Prime Minister Enda Kenny, quoted by the Washington Post, after Irish voters legalized same-sex marriage.
- Deep South Daily: Hindsight Is 20/20: Obamacare Critic Turns on GOP for Not Expanding Medicaid
- Wonkette: Congrats, Santa Barbara! You Got Oiled By One Of America’s Slimiest Pipeline Companies!
- Alternet: Whoa — The US Senate Just Took a Step to Allow Doctors in Veterans’ Hospitals Recommend Medical Marijuana
- Gawker:Walmart’s Leaked Anti-Union Training Video: This Isn’t About You
- Liberal America: 28 Reasons I’m DONE Talking To Most Of My Conservative Friends And Family Members
- TPM: GOP Guvs With ’16 Ambitions Hamstrung By Budget Crises Of Own Making
- Digby: The GOP’s Despicable Scheme to Play Dumb on Iraq: A History Lesson for Rubio & Jeb
- ThinkProgress: How Atheists Are Turning ‘Religious Freedom’ Laws Against Religion