Friday, July 19, 2019

Trump Statement Was Racist, Offensive, And Un-American


House Raises Minimum Wage To $15 - McConnell Will Block It


Democrats kept their word on Thursday. They had promised to raise the minimum wage to a livable wage, and in a 231 to 199 vote they did just that. 228 Democrats voted to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025 (and they were joined by 3 Republicans -- Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania, Rooney of Florida, and Smith of New Jersey).

Sadly, six Democrats joined 193 Republicans in voting to keep the minimum wage a poverty wage. Those Democrats are Brindisi of New York, Cunningham of South Carolina, Horn of Oklahoma, McAdams of Utah, Schrader of Oregon, and Torres-Small of New Mexico. Gabbard of Hawaii did not vote.

The bill would raise the minimum wage in stages:

$8.40 hr. in 2019
$9.50 hr. in 2020
$10.60 hr. in 2021
$11.70 hr. in 2022
$12.80 hr. in 2023
$13.90 hr. in 2024
$15.00 hr. in 2025

It's a good bill, and it would raise the wages of over 30 million workers. And that extra money will be spent since it goes to people who need it -- and that will boost the economy, which will help businesses.

But don't celebrate yet. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell wasted no time in saying he would not allow the bill to come to the Senate floor for a debate and vote. This bill will just join over a hundred others passed by the House which McConnell has blocked.


Of course McConnell is LYING. The bill would not depress the economy, but would boost it significantly. And most legitimate research has shown raising the minimum wage is NOT a job killer. He's just trying to repay his corporate donors (who are afraid raising the minimum wage will put upward pressure on all wages).

This whole thing makes it very clear. Republicans are the party of the rich and corporations. Democrats are the party that cares about American workers.

Voters should remember that in November of 2020.

Inflaming The Base

Political Cartoon is by Adam Zyglis in The Buffalo News.

Two-Thirds Of Public Supports Statehood For Puerto Rico



The people of Puerto Rico have been American citizens for many decades now. But they cannot vote in our presidential elections, and do not have a voting representative in either of the houses of the U.S. Congress. In other words, they do not enjoy the same rights as other American citizens.

There is a simple solution to this. Puerto Rico should be made the 51st state in our Union. It should have happened a long time ago.

It isn't the American public that prevents it. About 66% of the public (about 2 out of every 3) supports statehood for Puerto Rico. It is Congress standing in the way -- especially the Republicans who fear Puerto Rico will increase the number of Democrats in Congress (and considering how this Republican administration failed Puerto Rico with disaster relief after they were hit by two hurricanes, they may be right).

But that is just wrong. Politics should not prevent Puerto Ricans from enjoying the full rights of American citizens.

The charts above are from a recent Gallup Poll -- done between June 19th and 30th of a national sample of 1,018 adults, with a margin of error of 4 points.

The Cowardly Apologist

Political Cartoon is by Dave Whamond at cagle.com.

Rand Paul Puts Politics Over The Lives Of First Responders

I truly believe that Rand Paul is one of the biggest hypocrites to ever walk the halls of Congress. He claims to be worried about the deficit and the national debt, but only shows that when it comes time to help real Americans.

He did not worry about the national debt when he voted to significantly increase an already bloated defense allotment. He increased the military appropriation with no regard for the national debt (which it increased).

And he did not worry about the national debt when he and his Republican buddies gave corporations and the rich massive tax cuts. He knew that would massively increase the national debt (to the tune of about a trillion dollars a year), but had no problem voting for it.

But now that a bill has come to the Senate to provide for helping 9/11 first responders fight the health problems rising from their brave actions, Paul is suddenly worried about the national debt. The bill passed the House overwhelmingly, but Paul says we can't afford to help those first responders (unless we cut funding for other hurting Americans).

Paul's stand against helping 9/11 responders is worse than just hypocritical. It is mean-spirited and stupid.

Jon Stewart is a supporter of the 9/11 first responders (as we all should be) and he has fought for the funding to help them. After Paul's atrocious delay of the bill, Stewart went into the belly of the right-wing beast (Fox News), and blasted Paul in an interview with Bret Baier. He said:

“Pardon me if I’m not impressed in any way by Rand Paul’s fiscal responsibility virtue signaling.”

“Bret, this is about what kind of society we have. At some point, we have to stand up for the people who have always stood up for us, and at this moment in time maybe cannot stand up for themselves due to their illnesses and their injuries. And what Rand Paul did today on the floor of the Senate was outrageous.”

“He is a guy who put us in hundreds of billions of dollars in debt. And now he’s going to tell us that a billion dollars a year over 10 years is just too much for us to handle? You know, there are some things that they have no trouble putting on the credit card, but somehow when it comes to the 9/11 first responder community — the cops, the firefighters, the construction workers, the volunteers, the survivors — all of a sudden we’ve got to go through this.”

“It’s an abomination.” 

Apology ?

Political Cartoon is by Mark Streeter in the Savannah Morning News.

Demographic Change (& Trump) Should Terrify Republicans


Donald Trump has recently made obviously racist remarks (about women of color in the Democratic Party). It was not a mistake. Trump is proud of his racist remarks, and continues to repeat them. He has decided he does not need votes from anyone but racist whites. he is going to campaign on his racism in 2020, and believes he can scare enough white voters into re-electing him.

And that seems to be OK with congressional Republicans. They have been remarkably silent about Trump's racism, and most House Republicans refused to vote to condemn the racist remarks. It looks like they are going to be happy to go into the 2020 election being led by a racist -- even though the leader of their party brands all party officials with his beliefs.

That, combined with the changing demographics of this country, should terrify all Republicans. That did not work in the 2018 election, and I believe, it is unlikely to work in 2020. And even if it could work for one more election, the changing demographics (see chart above) will very soon insure that it never works again. This is a diverse and multi-cultural nation -- and it becomes more so with each passing day.

If Republicans were smart, they would change their policies to appeal to the growing diversity. But they haven't, and are unlikely to in the future. I'm not sure their largely racist base would let them anyway.

They have tried to protect their party by gerrymandering, putting a citizenship question on the census, building a wall on our Southern border, denying refugees entry into this country, and voter suppression of minority voters. None of those efforts will succeed for long. The demographic change is overwhelming and unstoppable.

Here is how Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen describe this threat to Republicans at Axios.com:

The single biggest threat to Republicans' long-term viability is demographics.
The big picture: The numbers simply do not lie. America, as a whole, and swing states, in particular, are growing more diverse, more quickly. There is no way Republicans can change birth rates or curb this trend — and there's not a single demographic megatrend that favors Republicans.
Why it matters: President Trump’s short-term calculation to stir up white voters with race-baiting rhetoric might very well echo for a generation. . . .
For any Republican thinking past 2020, here are numbers to fear, reported by Axios' Stef Kight:
  • The Hispanic share of the population has grown in every state since 2000, according to Census data.
  • Hispanic people now make up a quarter of the population in Florida, almost a third of the population in Arizona and 39% of Texas — all Trump states in 2016 that are becoming more winnable by Democrats.
  • Florida and Texas, two of the big electoral giants that voted for Trump, are witnessing the fastest non-white population growth. 
This wave is only accelerating, as Stef reported in "America's majority minority future":
  • Next year, the entire under-18 population will be majority non-white, according to Brookings demographer William Frey.
  • In less than a decade, the under-30 population will be majority non-white.
Between the lines: Trump clearly thinks this is good short-term politics.
  • Truth is: It's unknowable, though highly debatable.
  • Long-term, it seems unambiguous: If you need more African American and Hispanic voters, maligning and marginalizing them strikes even some inside this White House as stupid politics.

Some Agree With Him

Political Cartoon is by Dave Granlund at davegranlund.com.

The Most Warlike Nation


Thursday, July 18, 2019

A Dose Of Truth


Latest YouGov Poll On The Democratic Presidential Race



These charts reflect the results of the latest weekly results of the Economist / YouGov Poll. It was done between July 14th and 16th of a sample of 572 Democrats/Leaners nationwide.

The top chart asked respondents which candidates they were considering voting for. They could choose as many candidates as they wished.

In the second chart they were asked who they would vote for if they had to choose today.

On The Shoulders Of Cowards

Political Cartoon is by Tom Toles in The Washington Post.

4 In The GOP Were Brave/Decent Enough To Oppose Racism

(This photo of the Republicans voting against Trump last Tuesday is from The New York Times.)

On Tuesday, the House of Representatives took a stand against racism. They voted to condemn Donald Trump for his obviously racist remarks about four women members of Congress, Ever Democrat (and 1 Independent) voted for that condemnation resolution.

Only 4 Republicans had the decency and courage to take a stand against Trump's racism. They were (clockwise in the photo above) Fred Upton of Michigan, Susan W. Brooks of Indiana, Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania, and Will Hurd of Texas.

Although I'm sure I disagree with these four representatives on most issues, I commend them for taking a stand against racism. It took some courage to oppose Trump on his racism, and they are probably now on his enemies list. They also probably angered many in the Republican base (who seem to be OK with racism).

The other 187 Republicans in the House voted to support Trump. They voted to support racism.

It's a sad day for this country that 43% of the members of the House think racist comments coming out of the White House are acceptable. They have shamed themselves, their party, and this country.

The Assault

Political Cartoon is by Darrin Bell at darrinbell.com.

Kamala Harris Has Taken A Slim Lead In California

NOTE -- The zeros just mean that candidate did not get at least 1% support.

The chart above reflects the results of a new Quinnipiac University Poll -- done between July 10th and 15th of 519 Democrats/Leaners in California. The margin of error is 5.7 points.

The good news for Kamala Harris is that she has taken the lead in her home state of California. The bad news is that she's going to have to do a lot better than 23% in that state. She can't afford to lose 77% of the vote there. She needs California Democrats to help her make up the deficit she has in other states.

Wrong Sheet

Political Cartoon is by Clay Bennett in the Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Trump Is Counting On Racism To Get Him Re-Elected

(This cartoon image is by Lalo Alcaraz at pocho.com.)

Much has been made of Donald Trump's obviously racist attack on four women representatives of color in the media. It has generally been covered as a mistake by Trump. But was it a mistake? Or was it a carefully planned strategy that Trump believes will help him score another razor-thin victory in the 2020 election?

Here is how Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen at Axios.com see Trump's actions:

It might seem like improvisational madness when President Trump tells American citizens in Congress to "go back" where they came from, but those close to Trump say there's a lot of calculation behind his race-baiting.
Why it matters: It’s central to his 2020 strategy, they say. Trump's associates predict more, not less, of the race-baiting madness.
The rough calculation goes like this: 
  1. Trump knows that in 2016, he won the white vote by 20+ points. 
  2. He hopes he can crank their turnout even higher, especially among older, white evangelicals. He knows most of those voters are unlikely to ditch him, no matter how offensive his comments.
  3. He watches Fox News and knows AOC, in particular, is catnip to old, white voters, especially men. She is young, Hispanic, female and a democratic socialist — a 4-for-4 grievance magnet. Last week, AOC got nearly as much online attention as all 2020 Democrats combined.
  4. Trump believes he did better than Mitt Romney among Hispanic voters because many who came here and went through the legal process agree with his views. 
  5. Axios sat in on a focus group in Michigan where white swing voters agreed with Trump on immigration. Carlos Algara, a political scientist at UC Davis, told the N.Y. Times that a forthcoming analysis of the 2018 midterms found that even without Trump on the ballot, "white Democrats with high levels of racial resentment were likely to vote ... Republican."
  6. Facebook is often his incubator. He has spent three times more than all Democratic contenders combined on Facebook, with a mix of message-testing immigration lines to appealing to Hispanics who seem susceptible to his worldview. 
  7. So Trump calculates that (white voters + some Hispanic voters) * (tough immigration rhetoric + race-baiting language) = narrow 2020 win. 
The bottom line: Trump sees the four progressive women in The Squad as perfect foils until he gets a Democratic nominee to run against.
  • N.Y. Times: "He has told aides ... that he is pleased with the Democratic reaction to his attacks, boasting that he is 'marrying' ... Pelosi and the Democratic Party to the four congresswomen known as 'the Squad.'"
  • Then, he will try to do the same to the nominee.

The Racist Assumes

Political Cartoon is by Joel Pete in the Lexington Herald-Leader.

Modern GOP


Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Road To Tyranny


House Passes Condemnation Of Trump's Racist Remarks


Here is the powerful speech by Rep. John Lewis in favor of the House Resolution:

“I rise with a sense of righteous indignation to support this resolution.”

“I know racism when I see it. I know racism when I feel it. And at the highest level of government, there’s no room for racism.”

“It sows the seeds of violence and destroys the hopes and dreams of people.”

“The world is watching. They are shocked and dismayed because it seems we have lost our way as a nation, as a proud and great people.” 

“Some of us have been victims of the stain, the pain, and hurt of racism. In the 1950’s and during 1960’s, segregationists told us to go back when we protested for our rights. They told ministers, priests, rabbis, and nuns to go back. They told the innocent little children seeking just an equal education, to go back.”

“As a nation and as a people we need to go forward and not backward. With this vote, we stand with our sisters, three were born in America and one came here looking for a better life. With this vote, we meet our moral obligation to condemn hate, racism, and bigotry in every form.”

"Thank you for the time. Do what is right, what is fair, and what is just."

And here is the Resolution passed by the House of Representatives:

RESOLUTION

Condemning President Trump’s racist comments directed at Members of Congress.
Whereas the Founders conceived America as a haven of ref- uge for people fleeing from religious and political persecution, and Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, and James Madison all emphasized that the Nation gained as it attracted new people in search of freedom and liveli- hood for their families;

Whereas the Declaration of Independence defined America as a covenant based on equality, the unalienable Rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, and government by the consent of the people;


Whereas Benjamin Franklin said at the Constitutional con- vention, ‘‘When foreigners after looking about for some other Country in which they can obtain more happiness, give a preference to ours, it is a proof of attachment which ought to excite our confidence and affection’’;

Whereas President Franklin D. Roosevelt said, ‘‘Remember, remember always, that all of us, and you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists’’;
Whereas immigration of people from all over the Earth has defined every stage of American history and propelled our social, economic, political, scientific, cultural, artistic and technological progress as a people, and all Americans, ex- cept for the descendants of Native people and enslaved African-Americans, are immigrants or descendants of im- migrants;

Whereas the commitment to immigration and asylum has been not a partisan cause but a powerful national value that has infused the work of many Presidents;

Whereas American patriotism is defined not by race or eth- nicity but by devotion to the Constitutional ideals of equality, liberty, inclusion, and democracy and by service to our communities and struggle for the common good;

Whereas President John F. Kennedy, whose family came to the United States from Ireland, stated in his 1958 book ‘‘A Nation of Immigrants’’ that ‘‘The contribution of im- migrants can be seen in every aspect of our national life. We see it in religion, in politics, in business, in the arts, in education, even in athletics and entertainment. There is no part of our nation that has not been touched by our immigrant background. Everywhere immigrants have en- riched and strengthened the fabric of American life.’’;


Whereas President Ronald Reagan in his last speech as President conveyed ‘‘An observation about a country which I love’’;

Whereas as President Reagan observed, the torch of Lady Liberty symbolizes our freedom and represents our herit- age, the compact with our parents, our grandparents, and our ancestors, and it is the Statue of Liberty and its val- ues that give us our great and special place in the world;

Whereas other countries may seek to compete with us, but in one vital area, as ‘‘a beacon of freedom and opportunity that draws the people of the world, no country on Earth comes close’’;

Whereas it is the great life force of ‘‘each generation of new Americans that guarantees that America’s triumph shall continue unsurpassed’’ through the 21st century and be- yond and is part of the ‘‘magical, intoxicating power of America’’;

Whereas this is ‘‘one of the most important sources of Amer- ica’s greatness: we lead the world because, unique among nations, we draw our people -- our strength -- from every country and every corner of the world, and by doing so we continuously renew and enrich our nation’’;

Whereas ‘‘thanks to each wave of new arrivals to this land of opportunity, we’re a nation forever young, forever bursting with energy and new ideas, and always on the cutting edge’’, always leading the world to the next fron- tier;

Whereas this openness is vital to our future as a Nation, and ‘‘if we ever closed the door to new Americans, our leader- ship in the world would soon be lost’’; and


Whereas President Donald Trump’s racist comments have le- gitimized fear and hatred of new Americans and people of color: Now, therefore, be it
  1. 1  Resolved, That the House of Representatives—

  2. 2  (1) believes that immigrants and their descend-

  3. 3  ants have made America stronger, and that those

  4. 4  who take the oath of citizenship are every bit as

  5. 5  American as those whose families have lived in the

  6. 6  United States for many generations;

  7. 7  (2) is committed to keeping America open to

  8. 8  those lawfully seeking refuge and asylum from vio-

  9. 9  lence and oppression, and those who are willing to

  10. 10  work hard to live the American Dream, no matter

  11. 11  their race, ethnicity, faith, or country of origin; and

  12. 12  (3) strongly condemns President Donald

  13. 13  Trump’s racist comments that have legitimized and

  14. 14  increased fear and hatred of new Americans and

  15. 15  people of color by saying that our fellow Americans

  16. 16  who are immigrants, and those who may look to the

  17. 17  President like immigrants, should ‘‘go back’’ to

  18. 18  other countries, by referring to immigrants and asy-

  19. 19  lum seekers as ‘‘invaders,’’ and by saying that Mem-

  20. 20  bers of Congress who are immigrants (or those of

  21. 21  our colleagues who are wrongly assumed to be immi-

  22. 22  grants) do not belong in Congress or in the United

  23. 23  States of America.

Racists

Political Cartoon is by Gary Huck at huckkonopackicartoons.com.

New Hampshire Poll Signals Trouble For Sanders Campaign




The charts above Are from the St. Anselm College Poll -- done between July 10th and 12th of 351 registered voters likely to vote in the New Hampshire Democratic primary. It has a margin of error of 5.2 points.

In 2016, New Hampshire was an important state for Bernie Sanders. He won the primary there easily, getting slightly more than 60% of the vote. It showed he was a serious candidate, and propelled him to victories in other states.

New Hampshire looks far different for Sanders in the current campaign. As the charts show, he is having trouble getting even 10% of the New Hampshire Democratic vote, and trails four other candidates -- Joe Biden (20.8%), Kamala Harris (17.5%), Elizabeth Warren (16.7%), and Pete Buttigieg (11.5%).

This signals trouble for the Sanders campaign in 2020. If he cannot win in New Hampshire (a neighboring state), or at least make a strong showing there, then his chances to secure the nomination look very dim.

The Whitey House

Political Cartoon is by Ed Hall at artizans.com.

Second Quarter Fundraising For ALL Democratic Candidates



All the Democratic candidates for the party's presidential nomination have finally reported the second quarter fundraising totals (see chart above). Only five candidates had healthy fundraising totals -- totals that will keep them in the race for quite a while. They are Pete Buttigieg ($24.9 million), Joe Biden ($22 million), Elizabeth Warren ($19.2 million), Bernie Sanders ($18 million), and Kamala Harris ($11.8 million).

Only one other candidate averaged at least a million dollars a month for the four month period -- Cory Booker ($4.5 million).

The rest are in a lot of trouble. Unless they can get on the debate stage and perform well enough to break through to the leading pack, they will soon have to abandon their presidential quest. They will have to quit, because they won't have the money to keep going.

The chart above is from The New York Times.

Tweeting From The Sewer

Political Cartoon is by Steve Sack in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

N.C. Newspaper Calls Out Republicans On Trump's Racism

There is no doubt that Donald Trump's latest attacks on four women of color in the House of Representatives is racist. Even the normally milquetoast mainstream media understands this.

What is amazing to me is the silence of GOP officials. Very few have spoken about Trump's racist statements at all. Most have said nothing at all, while some others are trying to claim the statements are political -- not racist.

That's absurd! It makes me wonder -- are there any decent Americans left in that party? Has the party decided that it is now OK with racism? Is pleasing the bigoted base more important than standing up for what's right?

The following is an editorial by the editorial board of the Raleigh News & Observer (North Carolina):

We’re not big believers in public officials being responsible for all the bad things other public officials say or do. It’s become a too-common political weapon to ask lawmakers to condemn members of their own party, even for behavior that’s not representative of anything more than one person’s poor decision. But sometimes that behavior is so troubling that our leaders need to stand up and say something. 

So it was Sunday when President Donald Trump tweeted a bigoted attack on four Democratic Congresswomen of color, telling Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan to “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.” This despite three of the four women being born in the United States, and the other, Omar, being a U.S. citizen. 

“Go back where you came from” is among the worst of racist tropes. It divides us by ethnicity and skin color. It says that even if someone is a citizen or legal immigrant, they are not part of the rest of us. That runs contrary to who we should be as Americans, and if Donald Trump didn’t know it when he typed the words, he surely did later when people responded with appropriate outrage. But the same president who referred to Haiti and African nations as “shithole countries” and said African visitors would never “go back to their huts” once again doubled down on his racism.

It’s dangerous, destructive behavior, and at the least every Republican lawmaker in Congress should declare as much about their president’s outburst. That includes North Carolina’s most senior leaders, Sens. Richard Burr and Thom Tillis. We know this isn’t easy politically, especially for Tillis, who is running for reelection and faces a Republican primary challenger in a race to see who can embrace the president more fully. Tillis, of course, has a history of comically wavering on Trump — standing up then backing down on issues that include the Mueller investigation and the president’s declaration of a national emergency at the southern border.

North Carolina’s lawmakers, however, are far from the only Republicans to struggle with Trump’s troubling tendencies. A handful have dared to step forward and criticize the president, only to equivocate when everyone else takes a step back. Most have instead decided that any criticism of Trump — be it for policy or problematic behavior — is not worth the heat that follows. 

The result is that the Republican Party is firmly Donald Trump’s party now. It’s the party where insults and other ugliness are just being “rough around the edges.” It’s the party where locking legal migrants in crowded, unhealthy cages is acceptable immigration policy. It’s the party where it’s OK to say racist things so long as the next jobs report is encouraging. 

If you don’t believe it, listen to the meekness today from Republicans, including those who represent our state. Instead of standing up for who we should be, they’re bowing to the worst of who we are.

Read more here: https://www.newsobserver.com/opinion/editorials/article232675982.html#storylink=cpy
Read more here: https://www.newsobserver.com/opinion/editorials/article232675982.html#storylink=cpy
Read more here: https://www.newsobserver.com/opinion/editorials/article232675982.html#storylink=cpy

Identifying The Racist

Political Cartoon is by Mike Stanfill at ragingpencils.com.

Liberals


Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Trump Wants A White America


Republicans Reveal Their Campaign Strategy For 2020


The Republicans have now made it clear how they are going to campaign in 2020. They are going to try to label the Democratic Party as a party of socialists. The banner above is from a new Republican website (socialistshowdown.com).

They want to make Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, and Ilhan Omar the face of the Democratic Party. Note that they picture these Democrats alongside Vladimir Lenin and Fidel Castro. They know that the word "socialist" scares many Americans, and they will try to equate it with communism.

I don't think this strategy will work on most Democrats running for president or Congress -- not even the very progressive candidates like Elizabeth Warren (who has made it clear she's a capitalist who believes in restricting the power of corporations and making the economy fair for everyone).

But it could work if the Democrats nominate Bernie Sanders. Sanders has proudly declared himself to be a socialist for many years -- and the Republicans will use his own words against him.

Voters are unhappy with the right-wing extremism of the Republicans. The Republicans know this, and they want to make the election into a choice of two extremes. They're betting the voters will choose them if that happens, and they could be right.

Voters want a return to normalcy. Democrats would be making a serious mistake by nominating a known socialist like Sanders. It would be playing right into the GOP's hands.

This does not mean we cannot nominate a progressive or campaign on progressive principles. They just need to be promoted as solutions to individual problems -- not a left-wing revolution.

Child Abuse For Profit

Political Cartoon is by Randall Enos at cagle.com.

Public Disagrees With Trump & GOP On Climate Change




These charts reflect the results of a new Morning Consult Poll -- done between July 13th and 17th of a national sample of 2,200 adults. The margin of error is 2 points.

It shows that the Republicans in Congress (and Donald Trump) remain far out-of-step with the public on global climate change. About 57% of the public believes climate change is being caused by human activity. Only 26% believe it is a natural phenomenon, and 5% believe it's not happening.

And a clear majority (63%) believe climate change is a serious problem -- with 27% saying it's a crisis and another 36% saying it's a major problem. Only 29% say it's a minor problem or no problem at all.

This is why you won't see any Republicans campaigning on this issue in the next election campaign. It's also why Democrats need to make this a major campaign issue.

Going Back

Political Cartoon is by Ed Hall at artizans.com.

Warren's Message For Those In The Trump Administration

(This caricature of Senator Warren is by DonkeyHotey.)

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) is one of the leading candidates for the Democratic Party presidential nomination -- and she has a warning for the criminals of the Trump administration. She says:

I’ve got a message for anyone in the Trump administration who needs to hear it:

When you physically abuse immigrants, sexually abuse immigrants, or refuse to provide them the medical care that they need, you break the law of the United States of America.

Donald Trump may be willing to look the other way.

But President Elizabeth Warren will not.

In a Warren administration, I’ll launch a task force in the Department of Justice to investigate the Trump administration’s criminal abuses at the border, and we’ll hold perpetrators accountable.

When people come here who are desperate — people who come here whose lives have been turned upside down, people who come here to try to build a better future — then we need to treat them with humanity, and we need to follow the law.

We’re going to fight against these human rights violations with everything that we’ve got. And we won’t ever back down.

Approving Racism

Political Cartoon is by Clay Jones at claytoonz.com.

Trump Is A Racist - And So Are All Of His Supporters


I have heard the meme often that "All Republicans are not racist, but all racists are Republican". I agree with the second part of that statement. The obvious and most blatant racists (Klan members, white supremacists, etc.) have made it clear that they support Donald Trump because they see him as one of their own. But I'm not sure I can agree with the first part of the statement. How can you support Trump (which almost all Republicans do) and not be a racist?

Racism doesn't depend on whether you claim it or not. Racism is determined by your actions -- and supporting or voting for a racist means you are a racist. Some Republicans will try to claim that Trump is not really a racist. They are either lying or tragically ignorant. Trump is an obvious racist, and he has been one all of his adult life.

Here (from Vox.com) are examples of his racism:

Trump has a long history of racist controversies

Here’s a breakdown of Trump’s history, taken largely from Dara Lind’s list for Vox and an op-ed by Nicholas Kristof in the New York Times:
  • 1973: The US Department of Justice — under the Nixon administration, out of all administrations — sued the Trump Management Corporation for violating the Fair Housing Act. Federal officials found evidence that Trump had refused to rent to black tenants and lied to black applicants about whether apartments were available, among other accusations. Trump said the federal government was trying to get him to rent to welfare recipients. In the aftermath, he signed an agreement in 1975 agreeing not to discriminate to renters of color without admitting to discriminating before.
  • 1980s: Kip Brown, a former employee at Trump’s Castle, accused another one of Trump’s businesses of discrimination. “When Donald and Ivana came to the casino, the bosses would order all the black people off the floor,” Brown said. “It was the eighties, I was a teenager, but I remember it: They put us all in the back.”
  • 1988: In a commencement speech at Lehigh University, Trump spent much of his speechaccusing countries like Japan of “stripping the United States of economic dignity.” This matches much of his current rhetoric on China.
  • 1989: In a controversial case that’s been characterized as a modern-day lynching, four black teenagers and one Latino teenager — the “Central Park Five” — were accused of attacking and raping a jogger in New York City. Trump immediately took charge in the case, running an ad in local papers demanding, “BRING BACK THE DEATH PENALTY. BRING BACK OUR POLICE!” The teens’ convictions were later vacated after they spent seven to 13 years in prison, and the city paid $41 million in a settlement to the teens. But Trump in October 2016 said he still believes they’re guilty, despite the DNA evidence to the contrary.
  • 1991: A book by John O’Donnell, former president of Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, quoted Trump’s criticism of a black accountant: “Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day. … I think that the guy is lazy. And it’s probably not his fault, because laziness is a trait in blacks. It really is, I believe that. It’s not anything they can control.” Trump at first denied the remarks, but later said in a 1997 Playboy interviewthat “the stuff O’Donnell wrote about me is probably true.”
  • 1992: The Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino had to pay a $200,000 fine because it transferred black and women dealers off tables to accommodate a big-time gambler’s prejudices.
  • 1993: In congressional testimony, Trump said that some Native American reservations operating casinos shouldn’t be allowed because “they don’t look like Indians to me.”
  • 2000: In opposition to a casino proposed by the St. Regis Mohawk tribe, which he saw as a financial threat to his casinos in Atlantic City, Trump secretly ran a series of adssuggesting the tribe had a “record of criminal activity [that] is well documented.”
  • 2004: In season two of The Apprentice, Trump fired Kevin Allen, a black contestant, for being overeducated. “You’re an unbelievably talented guy in terms of education, and you haven’t done anything,” Trump said on the show. “At some point you have to say, ‘That’s enough.’”
  • 2005: Trump publicly pitched what was essentially The Apprentice: White People vs. Black People. He said he “wasn’t particularly happy” with the most recent season of his show, so he was considering “an idea that is fairly controversial — creating a team of successful African Americans versus a team of successful whites. Whether people like that idea or not, it is somewhat reflective of our very vicious world.”
  • 2010: In 2010, there was a huge national controversy over the “Ground Zero Mosque” — a proposal to build a Muslim community center in Lower Manhattan, near the site of the 9/11 attacks. Trump opposed the project, calling it “insensitive,” and offered to buy out one of the investors in the project. On The Late Show With David Letterman, Trump argued, referring to Muslims, “Well, somebody’s blowing us up. Somebody’s blowing up buildings, and somebody’s doing lots of bad stuff.”
  • 2011: Trump played a big role in pushing false rumors that Obama — the country’s first black president — was not born in the US. He even sent investigators to Hawaii to look into Obama’s birth certificate. Obama later released his birth certificate, calling Trump a ”carnival barker.” (The research has found a strong correlation between “birtherism,” as this conspiracy theory is called, and racism.) Trump has reportedly continued pushing this conspiracy theory in private.
  • 2011: While Trump suggested that Obama wasn’t born in the US, he also argued that maybe Obama wasn’t a good enough student to have gotten into Columbia or Harvard Law School, and demanded Obama release his university transcripts. Trump claimed, “I heard he was a terrible student. Terrible. How does a bad student go to Columbia and then to Harvard?”
For many people, none of these incidents, individually, may be totally damning: One of these alone might suggest that Trump is simply a bad speaker and perhaps racially insensitive (“politically incorrect,” as he would put it), but not overtly racist.
But when you put all these events together, a clear pattern emerges. At the very least, Trump has a history of playing into people’s racism to bolster himself — and that likely says something about him too.
And of course, there’s everything that’s happened through and since his presidential campaign.

As a candidate and president, Trump has made many more racist comments

On top of all that history, Trump has repeatedly made racist — often explicitly so — remarks on the campaign trail and as president:
  • Trump launched his campaign in 2015 by calling Mexican immigrants “rapists” who are “bringing crime” and “bringing drugs” to the US. His campaign was largely built on building a wall to keep these immigrants out of the US.
  • As a candidate in 2015, Trump called for a ban on all Muslims coming into the US. His administration eventually implemented a significantly watered-down version of the policy.
  • When asked at a 2016 Republican debate whether all 1.6 billion Muslims hate the US, Trump said, “I mean a lot of them. I mean a lot of them.”
  • He argued in 2016 that Judge Gonzalo Curiel — who was overseeing the Trump University lawsuit — should recuse himself from the case because of his Mexican heritage and membership in a Latino lawyers association. House Speaker Paul Ryan, who endorsed Trump, later called such comments “the textbook definition of a racist comment.”
  • Trump has been repeatedly slow to condemn white supremacists who endorse him, and he regularly retweeted messages from white supremacists and neo-Nazis during his presidential campaign.
  • He tweeted and later deleted an image that showed Hillary Clinton in front of a pile of money and by a Jewish Star of David that said, “Most Corrupt Candidate Ever!” The tweet had some very obvious anti-Semitic imagery, but Trump insisted that the star was a sheriff’s badge, and said his campaign shouldn’t have deleted it.
  • Trump has repeatedly referred to Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) as “Pocahontas,” using her controversial — and later walked-back — claims to Native American heritage as a punchline.
  • At the 2016 Republican convention, Trump officially seized the mantle of the “law and order” candidate — an obvious dog whistle playing to white fears of black crime, even though crime in the US is historically low. His speeches, comments, and executive actions after he took office have continued this line of messaging.
  • In a pitch to black voters in 2016, Trump said, “You’re living in poverty, your schools are no good, you have no jobs, 58 percent of your youth is unemployed. What the hell do you have to lose?”
  • Trump stereotyped a black reporter at a press conference in February 2017. When April Ryan asked him if he plans to meet and work with the Congressional Black Caucus, he repeatedly asked her to set up the meeting — even as she insisted that she’s “just a reporter.”
  • In the week after white supremacist protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August 2017, Trump repeatedly said that “many sides” and “both sides” were to blame for the violence and chaos that ensued — suggesting that the white supremacist protesters were morally equivalent to counterprotesters that stood against racism. He also said that there were “some very fine people” among the white supremacists. All of this seemed like a dog whistle to white supremacists — and many of them took it as one, with white nationalist Richard Spencer praising Trump for “defending the truth.”
  • Throughout 2017, Trump repeatedly attacked NFL players who, by kneeling or otherwise silently protesting during the national anthem, demonstrated against systemic racism in America.
  • Trump reportedly said in 2017 that people who came to the US from Haiti “all have AIDS,” and he lamented that people who came to the US from Nigeria would never “go back to their huts” once they saw America. The White House denied that Trump ever made these comments.
  • Speaking about immigration in a bipartisan meeting in January 2018, Trump reportedly asked, in reference to Haiti and African countries, “Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” He then reportedly suggested that the US should take more people from countries like Norway. The implication: Immigrants from predominantly white countries are good, while immigrants from predominantly black countries are bad.
  • Trump denied making the “shithole” comments, although some senators present at the meeting said they happened. The White House, meanwhile, suggested that the comments, like Trump’s remarks about the NFL protests, will play well to his base. The only connection between Trump’s remarks about the NFL protests and his “shithole” comments is race.
  • Trump mocked Elizabeth Warren’s presidential campaign, again calling her “Pocahontas” in a tweet before adding, “See you on the campaign TRAIL, Liz!” The capitalized “TRAIL” is seemingly a reference to the Trail of Tears — a horrific act of ethnic cleansing in the 19th century in which Native Americans were forcibly relocated, causing thousands of deaths.
  • Trump tweeted that several black and brown members of Congress — Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) — are “from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe” and that they should “go back” to those countries. It’s a common racist trope to say that black and brown people, particularly immigrants, should go back to their countries of origin. Three of four of the members of Congress whom Trump targeted were born in the US.
This list is not comprehensive, instead relying on some of the major examples since Trump announced his candidacy. But once again, there’s a pattern of racism and bigotry here that suggests Trump isn’t just misspeaking; it is who he is.