Democratic Convergence: Hillary ’16, Obama ’14

hillary and barack

Brent Budowsky: If a Democratic House and Senate are elected in 2014, it would re-empower Obama for one of the strongest closing two years of an eight-year presidency in modern history, which could avoid lame-duck status almost entirely with what historians would ultimately describe as “Obama’s third term.”

After Folding on Caitlin Halligan, Obama Needs to Act on Court Appointments

caitlin halligan

Brent Budowsky: Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder have given a pass to some of those who misused justice during the Bush years. The president should now move forcefully and promptly to fill judicial vacancies and pardon any who were unfairly treated.

Immigration Reform: Not Easy But Not Impossible

dreamers protesting

Vicotria Defrancesco Soto: The GOP’s split mindset regarding Latinos and immigration is what will likely prevent the president from crossing off immigration reform from his 2013 to-do list.

Filibuster Reform: Harry and Mitch Duke It Out

harry reid

Bremt Budowsky: Mitch McConnell should offer a bipartisan proposal to reform the filibuster rules by mutual agreement, in line with the historical precedents of the Senate, without forcing Democrats to resort to the “nuclear option.”

Susan Rice: Qualified

susan rice

Brent Budowsky: I warn Senate Republicans if they threaten to filibuster a Cabinet nomination for unfair partisan reasons they will guarantee a Senate majority will move to end these abuses of filibusters once and for all.

Ideology and Politics

ideoloogy

Steve Hochstadt: onsiderable pressure has been brought on Republicans at the federal level to make ideological promises which exclude political compromise. The most notable is the Taxpayer Protection Pledge not to raise taxes ever on anyone, promoted by Grover Norquist.

Winning the Dream

dream act

Paulina Gonazlez: In addition to needing to win political support for their demand, the Dream Movement identified the White House’s legal argument as the first and most important hurdle they needed to overcome,

Karl Rove’s Grand Slam

karl rove

Brent Budowsky: The president and Democrats seem befuddled by how to react to the Citizens United decision, while Karl Rove understands with crystal clarity.

Dems’ War FOR Women

nancy pelosi and harry reid

Brent Budowsky: Word on the street is Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Senate Democrats will launch a major battle supporting pay equity for the women of America that could be a defining moment in the 2012 campaign.

Mitt’s Robert Bork Problem

robert bork

David Love: It is hard to imagine how Romney will clear a path to victory in November by associating with an ideologically extreme radical such as Robert Bork.

Reid Rocks, Pelosi Rolls

pelosi reid

Brent Budowsky: It is far too early to predict the 2012 elections. But I suggest that Reid is rocking, Pelosi is rolling and Democrats are rising

Harry Reid Hits the Trifecta

harry-reid

Brent Budowsky: George Will writes on Sunday that Republicans could face a 1964-magnitude landslide loss. Things are falling into shape for Democrats to keep control of the Senate and regain control of the House.

Michigan’s Free College Tuition Plan

college graduates

Tanya Somanader: Hoping to refocus priorities in 2012, Michigan’s Senate Democrats have released a new plan that puts Michigan students ahead of wealthy corporations.

GOP Payroll Tax Disaster

gop tax plan

Brent Budowsky: As President Obama and Democrats battle during this holiday season to enact a tax cut for the 99 percent of Americans who constitute the heart of the nation, House Republicans are making a seismic political blunder reminiscent of the self-destructive overreaching of then-Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Georgia) that rejuvenated the Clinton presidency during the 1990s.

To Rebuild the American Dream, Put Pressure On Democrats

van_jones-wide

Randy Shaw: A progressive coalition that claims to be “Bigger than the Tea Party” must hold Democrats accountable as effectively as conservatives do for Republicans .

As Harry Reid Battles, Democrats Must Not Surrender

harry-reid

Brent Budowsky: When the full truth is told about the secret deals that will define the fiscal future of America and the fate of programs at the heart of the Democratic Party heritage, it will be clear that Senator Harry Reid (D-Nev.) is the most important leader in Washington carrying the torch, against great odds, for what true Democrats stand for.

The Day the GOP Shot Ol’ America Down

high-noon-wide

Ted Vaill: In less than a month, unless they relent in their effort to destroy the American (and the world) economy to curry favor with their Tea Party wing, the Republicans in Congress will cause the American government to default on its debt, on August 2, 2011 or thereabouts.

Paul Ryan Still Doesn’t Get It

Kathy Hochul

Robert Reich: Republican House Budget chief Paul Ryan still doesn’t get it. He blames Tuesday’s upset victory of Democrat Kathy Hochul over Republican Jane Corwin to represent New York’s 26th congressional district on Democratic scare tactics.

Turning Moments into Movements

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Berry Craig: As progressives it’s our job – each and every one of us, our job — to transform the outrage and to make this moment a movement.

Shock Wave Coming

softened-wide

Brent Budowsky: The economic and political shock wave will be momentous as budget politics will increase joblessness and reveal with brutality that Washington is out of touch with heartland America and dominated by special interests that voters deplore.

Filibuster Reform Dies a Quiet Death

Congress

Paul Hogarth: By a slim vote of 46-49 on Thursday, the U.S. Senate defeated a proposal by Jeff Merkley (D-OR) to actually require filibusters (as opposed to mere filibuster threats) before a 60-vote threshold is needed to end debate.

Why Obama Wins on Foreign Policy and Gays but Loses on Economics and Taxes

santa-pied-piper

Robert Reich: When it comes to protecting the fortunes of America’s rich (mostly top corporate executives and Wall Street) and maintaining their strangle-hold on the political process, Senate Republicans, along with some Senate Democrats, don’t budge.

Health Care Reform – Six Months Later

healthcare

Peter Dreier: Lots of reporters and pundits-all of whom have good, employer-provided health insurance plans-now say that Obama invested too much capital getting the Affordable Care Act through Congress when he should have been concentrating on the economy.

Harry Reid in the Arena

Brent Budowsky: Harry Reid led Senate Democrats to a large majority in historic elections, while Senate Republicans obstruct everything to negate those elections, which has never been done in the history of the republic. Voters who want more action to create more jobs should vote for more Harry Reids, and fewer Senate Republicans.

Hammering Out Future Immigration Flows: Immigration Commissions in Context

immigration reform

Michele Waslin: While some disagree as to how future immigration flows should be regulated, immigration advocates agree that planning for future flows of legal immigration is among the most critical elements that comprehensive immigration reform must include.

Reid on Immigration vs. Climate: Whatever Comes First

Mario Solis-Marich: As the pressure mounts around the country on the police state known as Arizona, eyes turn to Washington for comprehensive immigration reform. Top Senate aides informed me this morning that despite news stories to the contrary, Majority Leader Harry Reid has not backed off of the idea of pursing an immigration bill as the next order of Senate business. The clarification is one that may be too nuanced for some but is an indication of the balancing act the Leader feels he must make to hold the Democratic caucus together while trying to pursue legislative remedies to the huge problems left to fester during the days of the past Republican majority. The clarification however will probably not satisfy the Latino community as the disrespectful sting of the slap in the face delivered by Arizona lingers.

The Importance of Getting Wall Street Out of Washington, and Washington Out of Wall Street

Goldman Sachs Bets Against America

Robert Reich: If Washington knew what was good for it and the nation, it would sever its financial connections with the Street. Better yet, it would enact legislation seeking to limit the impact of private and corporate money in politics. That goal is made more difficult to achieve by the grotesque recent Supreme Court decision (Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission) holding that corporations, including financial firms, have the right to spend unlimited amounts on political campaigns. But there are ways around this, such as more generous public funding for candidates that choose not to take private contributions. Hopefully as well, the president will nominate Supreme Court justices who understand the importance of public trust in democratic institutions, and the difference between companies and people.

What’s a Real Democratic Majority?

Congress Paralyzed

Paul Hogarth: The filibuster means that progressive legislation requires 72 Senate Democrats – but you only need 54 Republicans to ram through the most awful right-wing agenda. Why? Because “Democrats vote with Republicans significantly more often than Republicans vote with Democrats, making it much easier for Republicans to pass the kind of legislation they want.

“Hands off My Medicare”: The Deadly Legacy of Social Insurance

Medicare

Colin Gordon: As the House and Senate hammer together the controversial health-care bill, a historian of the issue warns that the new law may be doomed by the American system of treating government benefits as bought and paid for.

Political Predictions for 2010

2010-clock

Paul Hogarth: California desperately needs to abolish the two-thirds requirement to pass a state budget, and even an amendment that does not include taxes would be incremental progress. But unless labor unions start putting real money in this effort, and the Democratic Party makes it the priority it must be, it’s going to get lost in the shuffle – and we won’t have what it takes to run a winning campaign.

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