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The 8th Circuit US Court of Appeals struck down Arkansas's 12-week abortion ban.  

The doctors that brought the suit said:

"By banning abortions after 12 weeks’ gestation, the Act prohibits women from making the ultimate decision to terminate a pregnancy at a point before viability"
The judges struck down the law, saying they were bound by a 1992 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that upheld the right to choose an abortion before viability and that Arkansas made no attempt to refute assertions the doctors’ lawyers made.

A Spokesman for Attorney General Leslie Rutledge said “The Attorney General is reviewing the opinion from the 8th Circuit and will evaluate how to proceed”

In other words, do we file a taxpayer dollar-wasting appeal with SCOTUS, or actually let the rule stand since we already have a 20-week ban?

Will be interesting to see if this helps with tossing the North Dakota 6-week abortion ban case.


Mike Huckabee was on Fox News Sunday, pushing his "Fair Tax" plan (that's anything but fair).  He plans to eliminate the income tax and replace it with a consumption tax of about 30%.  He plans to also create "prebates", which the government would send a check every month to every taxpayer equivalent to what someone living at the poverty level would pay in taxes for “necessities”.  (Don't they sort of do that now - wouldn't that be welfare & SNAP?)

To his credit, host Chris Wallace mentioned analysis done by the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center which found that the average rate of the lowest income folks would exceed 33%, while the average for the folks at the top would fall to less than 16%.

Of course, Huckabee was quick to point out that "they have it exactly wrong", because, of course they are. (what, you think Huckster is wrong?  What is wrong with you?! hehe)  He even made sure to note that the "tax study is one that has been discredited by the people who spent over $20 million, very thoughtful economic study developing the FairTax. It’s not just some political idea".  

Discredited?  WHAT?  What do the folks at Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center have to say for themselves?

“He has the distributional benefits backwards,” wrote William Gale, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and a former senior economist for President George H.W. Bush’s Council of Economic Advisers. “The notion that a tax on consumption will help the poor and hurt the rich is contrary to just about everything that is known about rich/poor spending and income habits, not just our model.”
He also had this to say:
“The ‘people who spent over $20 million on this did not understand for a decade how the tax actually worked, and it took two papers by me as well as other work – for example, the Bush tax reform panel – to convince these people that they had vastly misstated the tax base because they made 20-25 percent of government disappear.”

Not to feel left out, Len Burman, director of the Tax Policy Center, had a few things to say too.

"The idea that the poor would do better under the FairTax plan is simply wrong.  This issue doesn't involve complicated economic analysis,” wrote Burman, who among other things served as a deputy assistant secretary for tax analysis in the Clinton Treasury Department. “It's simple math, and the FairTax advocates have repeatedly and willfully flubbed the math.”

“High-income people spend only a fraction of their income, so they effectively benefit from a giant tax exemption compared with an income tax.”

Quite sad and pathetic when (a) the network you worked for pans, rather than pushes, your plan, and (b) the people you're attempting to discredit actually turn around and discredit you.


I don't think this is the kind of thing Mike Huckabee expected from his followers.   I wonder if he'll backtrack now.  (my guess....probably)

There's more at the link below.  Or you can mosey on over to Mike's FB page and read the comments.

FB post:


Republicans in Ohio have come up with a new poll tax to keep the poor/young/liberal leaning folks from voting.  Tucked into a Voter ID bill (HB 189) is a provision that  residents would have to obtain an ID card to vote.  Cost of this card?  $8.50.  Although, if you're lucky enough to make less than 100% of the federal poverty level ($11,770 per year), you can be exempt from it.  

I guess these Constitutional-screeching Republicans have never actually read the Constitution.  Hell, even SCOTUS has ruled on this in Harper v. Virginia Board of Elections, stating “a State violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment whenever it makes the affluence of the voter or payment of any fee an electoral standard”.  

Republicans, continuing to attempting voter disenfranchisement, one bill at a time.


...and we're only on Day 2 of her campaign.

Carly Fiorina thinks because she's a woman, she's Hillary's biggest competitor.  So, in an interview today, she gets asked what I've often heard men running for office get asked:  if you don’t win, are you interested in serving as vice president?

Not a "gotcha" question.  A simple "if you don't get the nod, if the person that does asks, would you be willing to take on the role of VP"".  Instead, she played the gender card.  “Would you ever ask a man running for president that question?”

Yes Carly.  Yes.  And they HAVE been asked.  

And this, after using that same line TWICE yesterday during an interview with Katie Couric


Some Republicans are blaming GOP leadership for a lack of contributions to their coffers, rather than, oh, stepping back and looking at what they have done/supported or not done/not supported.  

Example: Tom Massie (R-KY) had $46,000 from tobacco, trucking, health care and other industries in the first 3 months of 2013.  In the first quarter of 2015, he's only gotten $1,000 from PACs.   He believes it's retaliation from being defiant (he voted against Boehner for SoTH).  

And while he can't prove it, he says "the evidence is clear".  (Ummmm.....if you have evidence, you can prove it, even if to a small extent)

"I'm an engineer with a science background. I look at empirical evidence. If you have enough data points, you can prove something," Massie said
Hilarious, that statement.  He is, after all, a climate change denier.  And there's plenty of proof of climate change existing.  

Republicans......blaming everyone for their shortcomings....except themselves.

Louisiana State Rep. Mike Johnson (R-Bossier City) filed a bill that would allow private businesses to refuse to recognize same-sex marriage, should it become legal in Louisiana.

Oh might have to recognize that gay folks are legally married!  THE HORROR!  /sarcasm

The legislation would allow a private company to not offer the same benefits to legally-recognized same-sex married couples, as other married couples, on the basis of a religious objection.
Johnson describes his bill as protecting business owners from government retaliation based on their personal beliefs about marriage. It is meant to protect people on both sides of the same-sex marriage debate, he said.

Wow.  Protection for the business owners!  What protection does the discriminated-against LGBT community have?  

So far, the only sports that could pull out of LA are the Sugar Bowl, and possibly the NFL (New Orleans is looking to host another SuperBowl.  The NFL could say "no".  I don't see the Saints moving out of New Orleans).  The NCAA women’s Final Four is scheduled to occur in Louisiana in 2020.  Bobby Jindal hasn't said if he would support the bill, although he has expressed support for legislation that would "strengthen religious liberty protection".  And he believes businesses should have the right to refuse services for weddings, so I can't imagine he won't support the bill.  

I suppose I should get the #BoycottLouisiana hashtag ready for Twitter and Facebook.


The Nevada Senate Committee on Legislative Operations and Elections introduced Senate Bill 433, which would restrict early voting.  Voting on Sundays during the early voting period ahead of next year's elections would no longer be allowed, and counties would no longer be able to keep their polls open beyond 7pm.  Previously, polling sites in areas like Clark County, which contains Las Vegas, had kept polls open until 9pm

Culinary Union political director Yvannna Cancela said "the measures are a move to make it harder for middle class people to vote, which in Nevada are largely minority voters".  Her union represents 60,000 members.  And consider this, Las Vegas is not a 9-5 job kind of town.  Las Vegas is a 24/7 city.  Based on the schedules kept by people in the gaming industry, reduced voting hours would make it harder for them to get out to vote.  

The restricting of Sunday hours is also seen as a way to restrict the "Souls to the Polls" voters.....traditionally African-Americans who vote on Sundays with their church

And for good measure, the Assembly Legislative Operations and Elections Committee held hearings on AB253 and AB256, both of which require voters to show a government-issued identification card (driver's license, or an identification card specifically created for the purpose of voting)

State Senator James Settlemeyer (R) is sponsoring SB169, which is a similar bill within the Senate, while Don Gustavson (R) is proposing a  constitutional voter identification amendment.

According to the article:

All three bills contain similar language and would require the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles to create and distribute free voter cards to a person without another form of identification. Voters would need to produce a birth certificate or other form of identification in order to obtain a card.

The bill would allow people voting without a form of identification to cast an absentee ballot that would be counted if the voter registers with the local registrar by the next Friday

So, if you don't currently have an ID (DL, state ID, passport), or if you don't have a copy of your birth certificate to get one, you're screwed.  Unless they're going to waive the fees for obtaining a copy of your birth certificate, don't expect to get to vote.


GOP Brain Child, Tom Cotton (R-Dumbtown), was on Face The Nation this morning, and thinks we need to secure a deal better than what Obama is getting.  He couldn't control himself, and had to quote Netanyahu by saying "The alternative to a bad deal is a better deal".  (at this rate, with his being a buttinski, we may have NO deal.  Wonder how he feels about that?).  He then prattled on with some fears, that Iran must be stopped because:

They already control Tehran and, increasingly, they control Damascus and Beirut and Baghdad. And now, Sena’a as well

TEHRAN IS THEIR CAPITAL, YOU DOLT.  Of course they control it.  As for the others, I'll venture a guess and assume that you meant ISIS would control them.  Of course, Iran is fighting ISIS, just as we are.  

If you didn't see this bit of genius, here ya go:

(I don't recall seeing anything about this today.  Apologies if it's been posted about, and I missed it)


According to Mitch, on CNN this morning:

I think this is a good case of selective outrage. I remember reading about Sen. Robert Byrd when he was the Senate Majority Leader flying to Moscow during the negotiations over the Salt II treaty explaining to the Russians the Senate’s role in treaty ratification, and John Kerry when he was a senator flew to Managua there and met with a communist dictator, Daniel Ortega, and accused the Reagan administration of engaging in terrorism. So look, members of Congress expressing themselves about important matters, not only at home, but around the world is not unprecedented. So the main point here that I think everybody needs to understand is the president is about to make a very bad deal. He clearly doesn’t want Congress involved in it at all, and we’re worried about it. We don’t think he ought to make a bad deal with one of the worst regimes in the world.”
Except Byrd's Moscow trip was described as "laying groundwork" for improved relations.  Byrd himself said his delegation was there “to promote the cause of peace and contribute to a better understanding“ between Moscow and Washington….But he said the Senate wants to work with President Reagan “and we want to try to be helpful in reaching arms-control agreements that will. . . promote peace between these two great countries“  

Byrd's delegation was also bipartisan.  Yes, Republicans went on that trip too.  Remember that Mitch?  

As for Kerry's trip, he was on a self-appointed fact finding mission (accompanied by Tom Harkin, D-IA).  He wasn't speaking for the Senate.   He wasn't threatening to undermine the president.  And if you recall, days after meeting with Daniel Ortega and other leaders of the regime — the Sandinistas climbed aboard a plane to Moscow to cement their Soviet ties.  

The letter to Iran was not to "strengthen Obama's hand".  I mean, really.  Since when do the Republicans want to HELP Obama?  They've been out to make him look bad since January 2009.  And the Senators signing the letter were speaking for the Senate.  

Too bad Mitch's attempts at making this out to be "no big deal" are easily refuted.  (or should I go Palin and say "they're easily refudiated"?)

Video of Mitch:


First, we had ole Scotty saying that "If I can take on 100,000 protesters, I can defeat ISIS".  

Now, in New Hampshire, Walker compared combating terrorists like ISIS to a computer virus.   In his words:

And to me, I look at what I believe is the not well defined by some in our political discourse today, and that is I think our clearest threat right now is radical Islamic terrorism. I see it embodied right now in Syria and Libya, but growing elsewhere around the world. I just believe fundamentally that when you listen to leaders of organizations like ISIS and others like them it is clear what their intent is. It’s not to say in the Middle East. It is eventually to come back to American soil and to cause harm against Americans because that is their identified threat. And so my belief is just like a virus in a computer, we need to go to whatever length is required to make sure that eradicate radical Islamic terrorism where it is at before it washes up.
Sorry Scott, but you're wrong.  Terrorism is an idea.  It's a belief.  If we could run a simple program to get rid of the lunacy, we'd have run one to get rid of a particular political party that has become infested with complete lunacy.

Video of his speech:


Retired Major Gen. Paul D. Eaton was asked if the Iran letter, authored by Army veteran (and now Senator) Tom Cotton (R-Stupidville), was treasonous.  He wouldn’t say Cotton and the other 46 were “traitors”.  Instead, he said this:

“I would use the word mutinous.  I do not believe these senators were trying to sell out America. I do believe they defied the chain of command in what could be construed as an illegal act”.  

“What Senator Cotton did is a gross breach of discipline, and especially as a veteran of the Army, he should know better.  I have no issue with Senator Cotton, or others, voicing their opinion in opposition to any deal to halt Iran’s nuclear progress. Speaking out on these issues is clearly part of his job. But to directly engage a foreign entity, in this way, undermining the strategy and work of our diplomats and our Commander in Chief, strains the very discipline and structure that our foreign relations depend on, to succeed”.  

Eaton, who trained Iraqi forces from 2003 to 2004, and is now a senior advisor to said this in closing: “I expect better from the men and women who wore the uniform”.  

I think most of us do, Mr. Eaton.

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