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Welcome to the weekly open thread for policy discussions by DK Elections regulars. While the main Daily Kos Elections blog, an official subsite of Daily Kos, is strictly a policy free zone for discussions of politics and elections only, it can sometimes be hard not to bring up policy issues when talking about particular candidates or topics. In addition, some of us might like to have a thoughtful discussion with other regular commenters at DKE on issues of policy when most of what we usually talk about pertains to elections. Thus, this open thread and the group blog Daily Kos Elections: Policy will provide a forum to talk about issues without derailing DKE Live Digests for those who just want election coverage and debate. Feel free to follow this group and if you would like to publish a diary to the group blog page, just PM me about becoming a contributor.

So what issues are you interested in talking about?

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Comment Preferences

  •  The politics of the clean debt ceiling raise... (0+ / 0-)

    Obviously the GOP doesn't want a replay of the shutdown and fall out from that, especially heading into an election in 9 months where they need relative calm in hopes of getting the regular mid-term electorate out.  Also they expect to take the Senate and having the House and Senate they can then make ridiculous demands of the Obama Administration his last two years - including deep cuts in the budget and then more by holding the debt ceiling hostage.  

    Seems like pretty smart strategy on their part.

    Dems have to do whatever they have to to hold the Senate.   If the trade is okaying the KXL in order to keep oil money with Landrieu, Begich and backing Walsh and none to Cassady, Sullivan or Daines than I think it's a trade I'd make 10x out of 10.  

    Dems lose the Senate and the final two years of the Obama Presidency are going to be hell.  

    Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

    by Jacoby Jonze on Tue Feb 11, 2014 at 04:40:11 PM PST

    •  Pretty Much The Only Thing The House Will Do..... (0+ / 0-)

      .....for the rest of 2014 is schedule votes to trap Dems.  Their neck-snappingly rapid capitulation on immigration reform telegraphs the GOP's 2014 strategy....steady course of low-intensity, non-wave-making obstruction that they expect will help them win the Senate by default.

    •  I'm conflicted about what should be done with KXL (0+ / 0-)

      On one hand, as a proud environmentalist, I believe strongly that KXL is incredibly bad policy.

      On the other hand, your point about it possibly helping us keep the Senate is well-taken.

      At this point I honestly don't know which side to go with.

      (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

      by ProudNewEnglander on Tue Feb 11, 2014 at 05:53:26 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ultimately I Think It's The Worst Of All Worlds... (0+ / 0-)

        .....if we greenlight KXL.  We get the oilmen their pipeline at the expense of the environment and our own current level of access to that Canadian oil.....and Pryor and Landrieu lose by 10+ points anyway because of other factors.

        •  Are you predicting that? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ProudNewEnglander

          No polling supports that.

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Tue Feb 11, 2014 at 09:19:01 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm Holding Off On Predictions Till Summer.... (0+ / 0-)

            ....but the trendlines indicate that's the direction things are going.  If Mary Landrieu's approval ratings are 37% as yesterday's PPP poll indicated, the undecided vote is very unlikely to break her way.  It would take a Claire McCaskill-Todd Akin scenario for her to win.  Of course that's entirely plausible with the current state of the GOP.

  •  Unionization vote at the Chattanooga VW plant (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mark27

    to happen from Wednesday to Friday this week, apparently: http://www.kansas.com/...

    “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

    by KingofSpades on Tue Feb 11, 2014 at 09:20:28 PM PST

  •  Guns (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jncca

    Haven't really talked much about gun control in the policy threads.  Thought I'd bring it up after SC Gov. Haley's proposal to eliminate the requirement of permits and training to own firearms in South Carolina.

    It's a common liberal joke to say that Republicans want to make it easier to own a gun than a car, but I'm seeing it in action here.

  •  Child euthanasia in Belgium (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jncca

    Sounds like Belgium is going to remove the minimum age restriction for euthanasia.  Of course this will be very restrictive and only apply to a small number of children in late states of terminal illness.  I've never had a problem with euthanasia for adults making their own decision, but I'm not entirely sure how to feel about extending it to children.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/...

    Intelligence agencies keep things secret because they often violate the rule of law or of good behavior. -Julian Assange-

    by ChadmanFL on Wed Feb 12, 2014 at 12:27:03 PM PST

    •  Removing minimum completely? (0+ / 0-)

      I could understand making it 13 or something, when one can for the most part make decisions even if one isn't an adult.  But letting parents decided if a 5 year old should live or die seems extreme to me.

      21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
      politicohen.com
      Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
      UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

      by jncca on Wed Feb 12, 2014 at 02:32:56 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hard to tell from the article (0+ / 0-)

        The closest thing I can find to answering that question is this below.  Seems vague to me as I don't understand what "capacity for discernment" means with regards to children are concerned.  My assumption is this law will remove the minimum age completely and leave it up to the doctors to determine whether the child has the capacity to understand and make an informed decision.  It's walking a very fine line IMO.  

        Those include parental consent and a requirement that any minor desiring euthanasia demonstrate a "capacity for discernment" to a psychiatrist and psychologist.

        Intelligence agencies keep things secret because they often violate the rule of law or of good behavior. -Julian Assange-

        by ChadmanFL on Wed Feb 12, 2014 at 02:58:31 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Kansas discrimination (0+ / 0-)

    The Kansas house of representatives just passed a bill allowing basically any business, and even government workers, to deny services, accommodations, etc. to anyone in a same-sex union. The vote was 72-49 in favor. This bill would be laughable, but considering it passed and did so by such a large margin, its also quite sad and scary that despite all the progress being made, so many people continue to favor such intolerance by couching it in terms of religious freedom.

    The House Minority leader in Kansas, Paul Davis, is running for governor and is now being criticized for offering a rather weak statement in opposition to the bill saying it was a distraction and nothing else.

  •  How do you define pro-choice? (0+ / 0-)

    This came up a week or two ago in the live digest.  I don't like using the binary system.  I have a four-tiered system.

    Strongly pro-choice: Supports abortion rights up until at least the end of the second trimester, 100% of the time, with no notifications or waiting periods.

    Moderately pro-choice: Supports abortion rights in the first trimester, 100% of the time.  Can support abortion bans at 20 weeks or even at less, or can support parental notification laws, waiting periods, etc.

    Moderately pro-life: Does not support abortion rights, even in the first trimester, but can support exceptions for rape, incest, etc.

    Strongly pro-life: No abortion, period, except to save the life of the mother.

    Of course many others have their own definitions.
    On a personal level, I would identify myself as strongly pro-choice, although it's not a major voting issue for me at all and I don't support Roe v. Wade.

    21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
    politicohen.com
    Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
    UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

    by jncca on Wed Feb 12, 2014 at 10:06:59 PM PST

    •  Those definitions make sense (0+ / 0-)

      Using them, I would also be strongly pro-choice.

      However, I think there should be a fifth tier in the system whose position is, "I don't care." My father would fit into that category. He doesn't care about social issues at all.

      (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

      by ProudNewEnglander on Thu Feb 13, 2014 at 07:38:16 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  True. (0+ / 0-)

        I think that's fair, but at the same time "I don't care" still means you have to vote if there's a congressional vote on the issue.

        21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
        politicohen.com
        Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
        UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

        by jncca on Thu Feb 13, 2014 at 09:04:38 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I'm very very strongly pro-choice (0+ / 0-)

      That means no abortion restrictions at all, even in third trimester, government surveillance against anti-choice organization (who have proven to be terrorists), full federal funding of abortions, no "religious conscience" exceptions for , and a federal government campaign (including payments) to strongly encourage teenage and college-age women with unwanted pregnancies to choose abortion.  

      Racism, misogyny, and homophobia should NOT be protected by the Constitution.

      by TeaBaggersAreRacists on Thu Feb 13, 2014 at 07:51:07 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm shocked that you don't like the constitution. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KyleinWA

        Or America.  Because your position is plain anti-American.

        21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
        politicohen.com
        Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
        UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

        by jncca on Thu Feb 13, 2014 at 08:03:12 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Nice ad hominem (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ProudNewEnglander

          Supporting the use of the surveillance or the Patriot Act against  violent terrorist groups (and anti-choicers have proven themselves to be that) is not "anti-Constitution" or "anti-American".  

          Racism, misogyny, and homophobia should NOT be protected by the Constitution.

          by TeaBaggersAreRacists on Thu Feb 13, 2014 at 08:24:15 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  um, how? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ProudNewEnglander, Stephen Wolf

          ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

          by James Allen on Thu Feb 13, 2014 at 09:05:09 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Gov't surveillance against political enemies... (0+ / 0-)

            This is also the guy who says he fired his employees because they were Tea Partiers...

            21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
            politicohen.com
            Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
            UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

            by jncca on Fri Feb 14, 2014 at 01:25:11 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  He said he would do so I believe (0+ / 0-)

              I don't think he has any employees of any kind.

              27, originally OK-1, currently NY-10. Former swingnut.

              by okiedem on Fri Feb 14, 2014 at 03:27:23 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Hah (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                okiedem

                That reminds me, it's actually a big conservative thing to boast that they're business owners that fired their Obama-voting employees.  Go through freerepublic it's pretty common, though it's obviously just fantasy.

            •  TBaR isn't advocating (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Stephen Wolf

              that anti-choice groups be under surveillance because their politics are opposite those of the government that would be watching them.

              He's advocating that anti-choice groups be under surveillance because these groups have a long record of violence against abortion doctors.

              In the comparison of bad things, surveillance <<<<< violence.

              At least that's how I interpreted his comments.

              (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

              by ProudNewEnglander on Fri Feb 14, 2014 at 04:14:42 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

      •  I could go with that. n/t (0+ / 0-)

        (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

        by ProudNewEnglander on Fri Feb 14, 2014 at 06:31:20 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  ACA enrollment is good in January: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    James Allen

    “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

    by KingofSpades on Thu Feb 13, 2014 at 10:39:28 AM PST

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