"We decided to give Republicans exactly what they wanted – an opportunity to reject federal funds. Of course, once we did, the place fell into anarchy."

Utah State Senator Jim Dabakis (who is also the chairman of the Utah Democratic Party) after three Democratic members of the Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environmental Quality Appropriations Subcommittee voted Wednesday in favor of a Republican-backed bill to reject $71 million in federal funds. The committee is made up of both senators and representatives.

"What does that mean?" Representative Roger Barrus (R) asked, after the bill passed.

Senator Kevin Van Tassell (R) said:

“We just shut down DEQ (Department of Environmental Quality), we have probably shut down most of our conservation programs, most of our firefighters. I guess if that is what we want to do, as long as we know that is what we are doing.”

Two Republicans, Representative Mike McKell and Senator Ralph Okerlund, and Democratic Representative Susan Duckworth eventually changed their votes, resulting in the bill’s rejection and the acceptance of federal funds.

In the first on the record confirmation of the Dem plan to insert a marriage equality plank into the party platform at the Democratic National Convention later this summer, the DNC is going out later this morning with an email informing its list of the decision:

I want you to be one of the first to know: After a unanimous decision on Sunday, the drafting committee for the Democratic National Convention embraced marriage equality as part of our platform for the 2012 Convention.

The next step will be for the full platform committee to vote on it, after which it will be presented to the delegates at the Convention in Charlotte for a final vote. Make no mistake: This is a historic step toward fairness for all. Once again, Democrats are fighting to move this country forward.

Please stand with Democrats today and support marriage equality for all Americans.

When President Obama became the first sitting president to support marriage equality, Democrats stood shoulder to shoulder with him. I still remember that day. I couldn’t stop smiling.

Now, it’s up to us to speak up for what he has called a simple proposition: that every single American deserves to be treated equally.

Add your name today and say you’re with Democrats as we fight for the right of every American to marry the person they love:

Thank you for standing up,

Congressman Barney Frank

Obama and Dems deserve great credit for taking this step, and so do all of those who applied relentless pressure on the president from the left to come out and state his support for gay marriage.

Republicans have been arguing that the Dem party embrace of gay marriage will give them an advantage against vulnerable Democrats in Senate and Congressional races, because it allows them to say that Dems have taken their eye off the ball on the economy. And it’s true that some Dems have been hesitant to embrace the president’s position on this issue, perhaps because they worry that it could hurt them politically in difficult states or districts. But another key question to ask is this: Are Republican candidates and incumbents really going to make an issue out of this, and risk looking as if they are dragging us back on to old culture war turf, which could (as some GOP stratetists have warned) make the party look hidebound, reactionary, and unwilling to accept cultural change? That will be another real tell.

A new Pew poll finds that a plurality of Americans now supports gay marriage, 48-44 (fixed), and a majority of independents now supports it, 51-40. But an even bigger majority of Republicans, 70 percent, still opposes it. That’s a big cultural shift over the last eight years; in 2004, a big majority opposed it. Republicans are alone in refusing to come to terms with where this is headed.

We’ll soon find out whether suppporting gay marriage is really the political risk people keep saying it is.

Greg Sargent, Washington Post

(Source: unlawfulgatherer)

This cartoon ran in yesterday’s Charlotte Observer, as well as 9 years ago; here is their piece on Amendment 1’s passage.
Also, the Democratic National Convention is in Charlotte this year.

This cartoon ran in yesterday’s Charlotte Observer, as well as 9 years ago; here is their piece on Amendment 1’s passage.

Also, the Democratic National Convention is in Charlotte this year.

"

Resolved that: The current administration and Democrat majority in the Senate, in conjunction with Progressive socialists from all around the country, especially those from Hollywood and the left leaning news media (Indeed, most of the news media.) have worked in unison to advance an anti-business, an anti-free market, and an anti-capitalist (anti-individual rights and property ownership) agenda. […]

I, an American small business owner, part of the class that produces the vast majority of real, wealth producing jobs in this country, hereby resolve that I will not hire a single person until this war against business and my country is stopped.

"

— Conservative activist Melissa Brookstone writes in a letter entitled ‘Call For A Strike of American Small Businesses Against The Movement for Global Socialism' that has been spread by the Tea Party Nation. (via ThinkProgress)

libertarians:

“Yesterday Newt Gingrich laid out a new argument for why he should be the GOP presidential nominee: He’s got the most Twitter followers. But according to a former Gingrich staffer, he bought them.

Gingrich complained yesterday that the press is ignoring his prodigious Twitter audience: “I have six times as many Twitter followers as all the other candidates combined, but it didn’t count because if it counted I’d still be a candidate; since I can’t be a candidate that can’t count.” Which is true! Gingrich currently boasts 1,325,842 followers, whereas competitors Mitt Romney and Michele Bachmann have yet to crack 100,000.

But if Newt is winning the Twitter primary, it’s because of voter fraud.”

And as quickly as accusations are made, they can be debunked:

A great accusation, one that fits with the theme of “Newt 2012: The Campaign That Does Everything Wrong, and Expensively So.” But there aren’t any facts backing it up. What are these “variety of agencies” that Newt allegedly pays? The source doesn’t say, neither do the campaign’s finance reports. Moreover, as Ben Smith points out, Gingrich’s follower count was surging long before he launched his campaign. He was added to the “Suggested User List” in late 2009, in part because of complaints about the political slant of the “recommended” pols on the list. As this chart from TwitterCounter shows, Gingrich was well over 1 million followers at the start of 2011, before he staffed up his campaign, and long before he launched it.

The upshot of the Gawker story doesn’t seem to be that Gingrich paid for followers. It seems to be that his former staffers are gossipy jerks with adjustable definitions of the truth. We sort of knew that already.

(via libertarians-deactivated2014020)

But YOU BROKE IT!

But YOU BROKE IT!

"

Democratic presidents have consistently higher economic growth and consistently lower unemployment than Republican presidents. If you add in a time lag, you get the same result. If you eliminate the best and worst presidents, you get the same result. If you take a look at other economic indicators, you get the same result. There’s just no way around it: Democratic administrations are better for the economy than Republican administrations.

Skeptics offer two arguments: first, that presidents don’t control the economy; second, that there are too few data points to draw any firm conclusions. Neither argument is convincing. It’s true that presidents don’t control the economy, but they do influence it — as everyone tacitly acknowledges by fighting like crazed banshees over every facet of fiscal policy ever offered up by a president.

The second argument doesn’t hold water either. The dataset that delivers these results now covers more than 50 years, 10 administrations, and half a dozen different measures. That’s a fair amount of data, and the results are awesomely consistent: Democrats do better no matter what you measure, how you measure it, or how you fiddle with the data.

"

Republicans vs. Democrats On the Economy

(This is an article from 2005, but it still holds true today — and here’s a book published in April 2011 that goes in-depth on the subject: Unequal Democracy: The Political Economy of the New Gilded Age.)

(Source: diadoumenos)

Dems: People think they want to do everything, always, regardless of the Constitution.
Republicans: Actually want to subvert the Constitution.

Dems: People think they want to do everything, always, regardless of the Constitution.

Republicans: Actually want to subvert the Constitution.

motherjones:

Here’s something to chew on, while you try to get your head around the fact that GOPers would rather cut food stamps than farm subsidies.

motherjones:

Here’s something to chew on, while you try to get your head around the fact that GOPers would rather cut food stamps than farm subsidies.

This could be a problem for Democrats in Delaware; O’Donnell is running for a Senate seat….

This could be a problem for Democrats in Delaware; O’Donnell is running for a Senate seat….