Wednesday Open Thread | U.S. Democratic Mayors Week!

Happy HUMP day, Everyone! Today’s featured Democratic Mayor is the INCOMPARABLE Mayor Harold Washington.

Harold Lee Washington (April 15, 1922 – November 25, 1987) was an American lawyer and politician who became the first African-American Mayor of Chicago, serving from 1983 until his death in 1987.


Mayor of Chicago (1983–1987)

n the February 22, 1983, Democratic mayoral primary, community organizers registered more than 100,000 new African American, Latino and poor and independent white voters, while the white vote was split between the incumbent mayor Jane Byrne and future mayor Richard M. Daley, son of the late Mayor Richard J. Daley. Washington won with 37% of the vote, versus 33% for Byrne and 30% for Daley.

Although winning the Democratic primary is normally tantamount to election in heavily Democratic Chicago, after his primary victory Washington found that his Republican opponent, former state legislator Bernard Epton (earlier considered a nominal stand-in), was supported by many white Democrats and ward organizations, including the chairman of the Cook County Democratic Party, Alderman Edward “Fast Eddie” Vrdolyak.[32] Epton’s campaign referred to, among other things, Washington’s conviction for failure to file income tax returns. (He had paid the taxes, but had not filed a return.) However, Washington appealed to his constituency in his mayoral political campaign, and stressed such things as reforming the Chicago patronage system and the need for a jobs program in a tight economy. In the April 12, 1983, mayoral general election, Washington defeated Epton by 3.7%, 51.7% to 48.0%, to become mayor of Chicago. Washington was sworn in as mayor on April 29, 1983, and resigned his Congressional seat the following day.

During his tenure as mayor, Washington lived at the Hampton House apartments in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago. Among the changes he made to the city’s government was creating its first environmental-affairs department under the management of longtime Great Lakes environmentalist Lee Botts. Washington’s victory marked the end of race lines, such as Western Avenue in Chicago Lawn, which had kept Black Americans from living in White neighborhoods.

Harold- This American Life
ORIGINALLY AIRED 11.21.1997- Audio & Transcript here.

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93 Responses to Wednesday Open Thread | U.S. Democratic Mayors Week!

  1. Oh looky, it’s full blown madness! Popcorn Smiley

    Louie Gohmert Nominates Newt Gingrich For House Speaker

    WASHINGTON — Rep. Louis Gohmert (R-Texas) nominated Newt Gingrich for House speaker during his party’s leadership elections on Wednesday, but nobody backed the idea, a GOP source in the closed-door meeting confirmed to HuffPost.

    Gohmert’s unexpected move came during an otherwise routine process of reelecting Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) as speaker. When it came time for nominations to the top post, Gohmert stood up and said he supported having Gingrich back in the slot. Gingrich was speaker from 1995 to 1999, but hasn’t been in Congress since.

  2. rikyrah says:

    Obama Uses His Press Conference to Set a Tax Cut Trap for House Republicans

    By: Jason EasleyNovember 14th, 2012

    President Obama used his press conference in order to set a trap for House Republicans that will leave them in a lose/lose situation on the Bush tax cuts.

    President Obama was asked about caving on Bush tax cuts in 2010, and why Republicans and the American people should believe him that he won’t cave again. Obama answered that the economy was in a different situation two years ago. He mentioned the unemployment tax and payroll tax cut extensions, but as he said back then this was a one time only proposition. We cannot afford to extend the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy but we can make sure middle class taxes don’t go up. Obama prodded Republicans again to immediately pass tax cuts for 98% of individuals and 97% of small businesses. The president said we have to look at entitlements. Obama said, “When it comes to the top 2% what I am not going to do is extend a tax cut for folks who don’t need it.” The president added that we can’t afford to spend $1 trillion on tax cut for the rich, and the math doesn’t add up when it comes to just closing loopholes. Obama said that the issue was debated extensively during the election, and the majority of Americans agreed with him. The president said he wanted a big deal, a comprehensive deal.

    Later on, Obama was asked if the Clinton tax rates are the bottom line, and if there would be no deal if tax rates did not go back to Clinton era levels. The president answered, “I am open to new ideas.” He continued, “If Republicans or Democrats have new ideas to raise revenue, reduce the deficit, protect the middle class, I am not going to slam the door in their face.” The president recognized that we will have to compromise, but what he won’t do is have a process that is vague that will sort of, kind of raise revenue. Obama said he does not want to find the country in a situation where the wealthy don’t pay as much as they should, and middle class folks are bearing the burden.

    The president made it clear that he wants the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy gone. As far as raising revenue, the president repeatedly said that he is open to new ideas from all sides.

    Some on the left hear this kind of talk and immediately freak out, but this is a strategic move on the part of the White House. By opening the door to new ideas from all sides, the president is putting the ball in the House Republicans’ court. He is forcing them get serious about cutting a deal. Obama’s offer isn’t a display of weakness.

    The president is setting a trap.

  3. rikyrah says:

    #TDSBreakingNews Luke Russert asks @NancyPelosi if she’s too old to lead, immediately learns he’s not too old to spank.

    “Not very bright” Susan Rice was Phi Beta Kappa at Stanford. McCain ranked 894/899 at Annapolis.

    John McCain’s smackdown by President Obama today brought back painful memories for the fella

  4. rikyrah says:

    Let’s Be Honest, Red States Want to Secede Because the White Guy Didn’t Win

    By: RmuseNovember 14th, 2012

    One of the necessities, and difficulties, of a nation is keeping the population unified and being of one accord despite ideological differences, ethnic diversity and geographical location, and it goes without saying there will always be segments of the population who feel displeasure or disappointment when their leaders do not share their ideological bent. It is a sign of immaturity for individuals or groups to take their disappointment to extremes when circumstances fail to meet with their approval, especially when they are dissatisfied at the outcome of an election.

    In the mid-nineteenth century, an entire region of America attempted to break away from the Union because they could not comport a nation without slavery, and the result was America’s deadliest war and division that remains steadfast in the minds of the Confederacy’s descendants today. The contentious issue over slavery was apparently disappointing enough to Southern States that they seceded to form their own nation, and since 2009, there have been several attempts to reassert state’s sovereignty that are precursors to secession, and after President Obama was re-elected last week, residents in over 30 states filed petitions requesting to withdraw from the United States to form their own independent nations.

    The idea of leaving the United States is certainly a drastic measure just because a Republican (read white man) failed to win the presidency, and yet the rash of petitions being created to secede demonstrates just how racist and disgruntled a segment of the population is. None of the petitioners have the courage to put in print their real reason for wanting to leave the country because it would expose their rank bigotry and racism, so they proffer the notion their rights and liberties have been assaulted under President Obama’s Administration. Nearly all of the petitions to secede use the same language and cite the government’s disregard for the Founding Fathers’ beliefs typical of disaffected teabagger types, and the Texas petition represents the rhetoric Americans have heard leveled at President Obama since 2009.

    • Ametia says:

      Let them throw tantrums; We’ve had to endure 43 white president over the decades, and none of us talked of secesion. Of course it’s because PBO’s black. and that’s not going to change. so scurry MOFOs. Take all of your shit and get the fuck out of the USA. There will be more STUFF for the negroes, hispanics, and Asians, etc… oh that’s right; this is the problem. You’re the only ones ENTITLED TO STUFF in America, Am I right?!

  5. rikyrah says:

    The Conservative Majority Fund Wants to Impeach Obama for Being Black

    Nov 14 2012 in Now That’s Some Racist Bullsh*t, Politics
    by Imani Gandy (ABL)

    Now that the wingnut racist dillholes at The Conservative Majority Fund figured out that President Obama is black, they want to impeach him for being black. Come on — you didn’t think these Birther assclowns were going to stop, did you? Of course not! They’ve moved on to impeach Obama robocalls, and what are they accusing Obama of doing?


    WASHINGTON — The movement to impeach President Barack Obama has been launched, just days after he won a second term in the White House.

    The Conservative Majority Fund, a conservative group known primarily for its birther conspiracy spreading, has launched a robocall campaign to gin up support for the president’s impeachment.

    The call, emailed to The Huffington Post by Shaun Dakin of, reads in part as follows:

    Our only recourse now is to move forward with the full impeachment of President Obama. We suspect that Obama is guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors and that there may be grounds for impeachment as is laid out in the constitution. Further, he may not even be a U.S. citizen because nobody, I mean no one, has seen an actual physical copy of his birth certificate. Impeachment is our only option. And Republicans are already considering Obama investigations. As the nation’s most effective conservative group we are launching the official impeach Obama campaign.

    Among the “misdemeanors” they cite are the president’s proposals to close the detention center at Guantanamo Bay — an idea supported by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) — and to give “full amnesty” to undocumented immigrants. Indeed, a pathway to citizenship has, in recent days, been endorsed by McCain and other Republicans.

    Yes they ostensibly want to impeach him for stuff he hasn’t even done, and stuff that some Republicans support.

    I wish a motherfucker would.

  6. Ametia says:


  7. rikyrah says:

    Obama to McCain and Graham: Don’t F*ck With Me

    The president was serious at the press conference today, pushing back hard against the GOP nincompoops. Especially on the Republican witch-hunt on Benghazi and their attempt to score cheap points against Susan Rice, the President released a volley that was reminiscent of his smackdown of Mitt Romney in the second presidential debate.

    TPM helpfully provides the quote:

    “If Sen. McCain and Sen. Graham want to go after somebody, they should go after me,” Obama told reporters at the White House. “I’m happy to have that discussion with them. But for them to go after the U.N. ambassador? Who had nothing to do with Benghazi? To besmirch her reputation? It’s outrageous.”

    He further added that if the senators are going after Rice “because they think she’s an easy target,” “[t]hen they’ve got a problem with me.”

    That’s right, Republicans. THE PRESIDENT is speaking. The President is not going to let the Republicans turn Benghazi into a scandal where none exists, and he is definitely not going to let them turn an honorable public servant into a political pinata.

  8. Romney Blames Loss on Obama’s ‘Gifts’ to Minorities and Young Voters

    A week after losing the election to President Obama, Mitt Romney blamed his overwhelming electoral loss on what he said were big “gifts” that the president had bestowed on loyal Democratic constituencies, including young voters, African-Americans and Hispanics.

    In a conference call on Wednesday afternoon with his national finance committee, Mr. Romney said that the president had followed the “old playbook” of wooing specific interest groups — “especially the African-American community, the Hispanic community and young people,” Mr. Romney explained — with targeted gifts and initiatives.

    “In each case they were very generous in what they gave to those groups,” Mr. Romney said.

    “With regards to the young people, for instance, a forgiveness of college loan interest, was a big gift,” he said. “Free contraceptives were very big with young college-aged women. And then, finally, Obamacare also made a difference for them, because as you know, anybody now 26 years of age and younger was now going to be part of their parents’ plan, and that was a big gift to young people. They turned out in large numbers, a larger share in this election even than in 2008.”

  9. Give them a call (14930 Northam St., La Mirada, CA 90638, USA (714) 522-8088.)

  10. Ohio Senator Nina Turner To GOP – Get Out Of My Panties

    Republicans just lost the presidential election partly because of their very public war against women. You would think that this loss would have been a wake up call to these Republicans to stay out of women’s private decision making regarding their own health decisions, but no, not these Republicans. A week after the American people overwhelmingly voted for Barack Obama, Republicans went to Ohio to continue their War.

    Their latest attack on women would ravish Planned Parenthood in Ohio, taking away some $2 million federal dollars from the organization. In a response to these attacks, Democratic Ohio state Senator Nina Turner came to a press conference prepared. She wore a t-shirt with one simple message for the Republicans – Get Out Of My Panties – another meaning for the acronym GOP.

  11. US Rep E.B.Johnson‏@RepEBJ

    Today, the Congressional Black Caucus unanimously elected Congresswoman Marcia Fudge (OH-11) to serve as Chair…

  12. The Associated Press‏@AP

    BREAKING: Egypt’s president recalls ambassador to Israel after Gaza strike kills Hamas commander.

  13. Ametia says:


  14. rikyrah says:

    What Am I Missing?

    By Betty Cracker
    November 14th, 2012

    Semi-related to Bernard’s post on Petraeus below, I’m wondering if y’all can explain to me how this Obama conspiracy to blackmail Petraeus to give false testimony to Congress on Benghazi is supposed to work. The theory was put forth by Charles Krauthammer yesterday and eagerly taken up by the usual suspects today. Here are the underlying suppositions:

    1. The Benghazi affair is more politically consequential than Watergate, Whitewater, Iran-Contra, Chappaquiddick, the Keating Five and the Teapot Dome scandals all rolled into one, and Romney totally would have won the election if it had been covered properly.

    2. President Obama must’ve ignored warnings infinitely clearer than the 8/6/01 Presidential Daily Briefing entitled “Bin Ladin Determined to Strike in US,” which was obviously not worth investigating after 3K civilians were killed on Bush the Lesser’s watch.

    3. The only way Obama could cover his ass in the Benghazi affair was to orchestrate a scandal to compromise the country’s most prominent general, and he fiendishly used a wingnut FBI agent’s obsession with a seemingly flaky Tampa socialite to kick off an investigation that would lead down paths those two pawns could not foresee.

    4. Obama further used Jedi mind-tricks to silence noted political opportunist Eric Cantor after Cantor was briefed on the scandal before the election, thanks to the aforementioned wingnut FBI agent.

    5. Petraeus is either, A) such a dummy that he was willing to lie to Congress on 9/13 to buy a short reprieve from the announcement of the scandal, which he knows will then engulf him and destroy his career, or B) such a dupe that he will keep lying about Benghazi even after Obama has betrayed him and destroyed his career.

    I don’t believe wingnut conspiracy theories since I’m not deranged, but I can usually at least follow their logic down whichever rabbit holes it leads. Not this time. Am I missing something? In what universe does any of this shit make sense? I don’t get it.

    • Ametia says:

      BWA HA HA HA HA The wingnuttery is in the stratosphere and beyond. It’s obvious, that black guy has SUPER POWERS; and it is frightening to the weak-minded.

  15. rikyrah says:

    Posted at 05:07 PM ET, 11/13/2012

    Reluctant Democrats should step up on filibuster reform

    By Jonathan Bernstein

    Yes, I’m blogging a lot about filibusters — because it’s really the biggest open question in determining how the federal government will operate for the next two years, and because the decision will probably come soon. Don’t believe me? See Steve Benen’s updated chart on the explosion of filibusters since Democrats took the majority in the Senate.

    The latest news is that the advocates of reform are still pushing hard, and still counting votes.

    Democratic holdouts are correct to be concerned about the effects of radical reform. Not only will Democrats wind up in the minority at some point in the future and want those protections, but without careful design reform could easily turn the Senate into a second House of Representatives. It’s very understandable that individual senators want to protect their own rights and don’t want to transfer their influence to their party leadership.

    But that’s why reluctant Democrats should sign on — and develop their own reform package. Do reluctant Democrats, for example, really believe that a 60-vote Senate is needed to prevent majority tyranny and to preserve the importance of individual senators? They shouldn’t; the Senate successfully avoided majority-party tyranny for two centuries before the true 60-vote Senate showed up recently.

  16. rikyrah says:

    Rubio’s Iowa trip and pre-positioning for 2016

    By Steve Benen

    Wed Nov 14, 2012 11:58 AM EST

    Even thinking about the 2016 presidential election right now seems a bit like putting out Christmas decorations on the 4th of July — it’ll make sense eventually, but it seems kind of silly in the meantime.

    And yet, ridiculous or not, the race is on. Indeed, 2016 efforts didn’t start minutes after President Obama won re-election; it actually started months before, most notably during the national conventions, when potential candidates seemed inordinately interested in chatting with delegates from Iowa and New Hampshire.

    The difference is, now it’s become more explicit. A friend jokingly asked me over the weekend whether likely candidates have already scheduled trips to Iowa, but the answer isn’t a joke — Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) will be in the Hawkeye State this weekend, headlining a birthday fundraiser for Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad (R).

    A week after the 2012 election wrapped up — ballots are still being counted in some states — there are already published polls in Iowa and New Hampshire, and Chris Cillizza published a piece “handicapping the 2016 presidential field” literally one day after Obama’s victory.

    All of this seems wildly excessive — maybe the political world can consider at least some governing before investing energy in who’ll be president in 2017? — but Benjy Sarlin makes a compelling case that this is actually a highly relevant stage in the process.

  17. rikyrah says:

    Maynard Jackson, the late, great Mayor of Atlanta is always a favorite of mine.

  18. rikyrah says:

    Posted at 09:57 AM ET, 11/14/2012

    For his opening proposal, Obama offers his budget

    By Jamelle Bouie

    Last year, when President Obama was negotiating with House Speaker John Boehner to raise the debt ceiling, he offered a deal that would raise $800 billion in revenue over the next 10 years, while also making cuts to Medicare and Social Security in the form of stingier benefits and a higher retirement age. From the perspective of liberals — and Obama’s own agenda — this was a terrible idea. A figure of $800 billion isn’t nearly enough to fund future obligations, and the proposed (regressive) cuts to entitlement programs would unfairly burden middle- and lower-income seniors who rely on income from Social Security and health benefits from Medicare.

    It should be said, however, that this deal was negotiated when Obama was near the nadir of his popularity. Unemployment was still above 9 percent, and his approval rating had fallen to the low 40s — he was on track to defeat, and he lacked the political capital necessary to push against Boehner and the House Republicans.

    Now, of course, he’s in a much better position: With a solid reelection win and expanded Democratic majorities in the Senate, he has real leverage. And as such, he’s offering a deal that’s much better for liberals, and much less favorable to Republicans. Instead of $800 billion in revenue, he’s calling for $1.6 trillion, drawn in large part from increased taxes on the wealthy. But this isn’t a new plan — it’s what’s outlined in his 2013 budget, and — by and large — it’s what he campaigned on.

    Where would the revenue come from? The Tax Policy Center provides an analysis: $849 billion would be raised from letting the Bush tax cuts on high earners expire. $584 billion would come from limiting itemized deductions, closing a variety of loopholes and ending tax breaks for oil and gas companies. $148 billion would come from limits placed on corporate tax shifting (to lower tax countries), and $143 billion would be raised by restoring the estate tax to its 2009 levels. The remaining revenue would come from the “Buffet rule” — a new tax on millionaires — and some of this would be offset with tax reductions.

  19. rikyrah says:

    President Obama is still our President and we are still quite happily citizens of the United States…”
    By Kent Jones
    Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:10 PM EST.

    President Obama’s resounding victory was painful for the Right, no doubt about it, but Erick Erickson, editor-in-chief of has a message for the extreme kook end of his party: Get Over It or Get Out.

    Barack Obama won the election.

    He did not win by stealing the election. Voter irregularities always happen. It is one reason we support voter ID rules. But even in the worse scenario of reports out there, there were not enough tales of voter irregularities to matter nationwide. This is another benefit and built in safeguard of the electoral college.

    Barack Obama won. He won by turning out the most people in a well run campaign. In other words, he won fair and square.

    We here at RedState are American citizens. We have no plans to secede from the union. If you do, good luck with that, but this is not the place for you.


    We have a place for you here if you wish to continue the fight against Republicans in Washington like John Boehner and Mitch McConnell who’d be happy to sell us down the river to keep their power, no matter how devoid of principle or sound policy. You have a place here if you’d like to keep fighting the Democrats who are intent on further stifling economic growth, pushing forward with Obamacare, bankrupting the nation, and siding with teachers unions against kids who deserve better.

    Too many people have spent the past four years obsessed with birth certificates. Now they are obsessed with voter fraud conspiracies, talk of secession, and supposed election changing news stories if only we had known.

    So let’s add dabblers in this latest nuttiness to birthers as a category of people we do not welcome at RedState. Our aim is to beat the Democrats, not beat a retreat to a Confederacy that Generals Grant and Sherman rent asunder well over a hundred years ago.

    Even here at RedState, while we may not much care for him, President Obama is still our President and we are still quite happily citizens of the United States. If we must drain this fever swamp that’s taken hold of a few people on the right over this past week before we can drain the swamp in Washington, so be it.

    All others need not apply.

    Erick Erickson

  20. rikyrah says:

    New Morehouse college president has White House ties

    by Melissa Noel | November 14, 2012 at 1:59 PM

    One of the nation’s top historically black colleges has a new president.

    John Silvanus Wilson will be the 11th president of Morehouse College. Wilson is the former executive director of President Obama’s White House Initiative on HBCUs.

    According to a press release on the school’s website, Wilson’s appointment follows a nationwide search that was launched after the announcement that Dr. Robert M. Franklin would transition from his role at the end of this year.

    “Dr. Wilson has the vision, experience and passion to ensure that Morehouse continues to advance its aim of producing global leaders who will continue to make a difference in the world,” said Robert C. Davidson Jr., chairman of the Morehouse Board of Trustees.

    Wilson’s role will include maintaining the college’s reputation and making advances in fundraising and retention. A 1979 graduate of the college, Wilson returns to his alma mater with more than 25 years of experience in higher education and a successful institutional fund-raising record.

    The press release also outlined Wilson’s extensive expertise in advancing the interests of black colleges through research at George Washington University, his service at Spelman College and his role as director of the White House Initiative on HBCUs.

    “John has been a trusted voice, helping my administration follow through on our commitment to strengthen historically black colleges and universities,” said President Barack Obama. “I wish John the best as he takes on this important new role as the president of Morehouse College and as he continues to inspire more of our nation’s youth to pursue higher education.”

    Wilson said that he was honored to be chosen to lead his alma mater. He will officially assume the role of president at the end of January 2013.

  21. rikyrah says:

    Michael Steele calls current RNC chairman’s tenure ‘an absolute failure’

    by Joy-Ann Reid | November 13, 2012 at 3:33 PM

    With the 2012 election in the history books, Michael Steele may be having the last laugh

    The former Republican National Committee chairman, who lost his job to the current chair, Reince Priebus, despite a 2010 midterm election he oversaw in which Republicans picked up 63 seats in the House to take over the majority from Democrats, feels that he has been vindicated by the results this year. Not only did Mitt Romney lose the presidential race, with Barack Obama becoming only the fourth president in 100 years to win the White House twice with more than 50 percent of the vote (the other three: FDR, Dwight Eisenhower and Ronald Reagan), Democrats picked up seats in the Senate and House.

    And while there’s plenty of blame to go around for the 2012 election (just ask Karl Rove), Steele is unsparing in his criticism of his successor at the RNC.

    “His term has been an absolute failure,” Steele says of Priebus. “Mine was an absolute success in historic terms.”

    And yet, he expects Priebus to be treated differently than he was after 2010. “The difference is that the [Republican] establishment, they’re not bucking to get rid of him because that’s their boy. They’re perfectly comfortable with the way things are.”

  22. rikyrah says:

    “Rep. [Peter] King wants to know why the FBI didn’t alert him, or the president, or the National Security Council — somebody, anybody. But somebody did know. King’s own party leader in the House. Why didn’t [Eric] Cantor raise the alarm? The majority leader needs to step up to the mic.”

  23. rikyrah says:

    I love Harold.

    Always will.

    I know somewhere in the attic, I still have a blue button for Harold.

  24. Dannie Owens‏@DAOWENS44

    New Morehouse college president has White House ties | theGrio

  25. Twitter is beating the fk out of Luke Russert! Wet behind the ears know nothing PUNK!

  26. President Obama will hold a news conference today at 1:30 ET in the East Room of the White House. live:

  27. It’s full blown madness, folks!

    A Key West man wrote “Fuck Obama” on his will and then killed himself

    A tanning salon owner in Key West who blamed the president for his personal problems has killed himself after writing “Fuck Obama” on his will.

    Michael Cossey told police that his partner, 64-year-old Henry Hamilton, had promised that “if Barack gets re-elected, I’m not going to be around,” according to the Key West Citizen.

    Friends of Hamilton had requested that police conduct welfare checks on Hamilton because they were concerned about his state of mind. When Officer Pablo Rodriguez stopped by the condo on Nov. 8, he woke Cossey and the two found Hamilton dead with two empty prescription bottles, one for the anxiety medication Xanax and one for the schizophrenia medication Seroquel.

    Cossey said that Hamilton had been “very upset about the election results” and “very stressed about his business.”

  28. Could Texas become a blue state? … #GOP #texas


  29. rikyrah says:

    McConnell’s Strategy Won’t Work

    by BooMan
    Wed Nov 14th, 2012 at 09:30:03 AM EST

    Ashley Judd is a little too liberal for my tastes, and that isn’t easy to do. But saying things like it is “unconscionable to breed” will make me turn away from you. Nonetheless, I think a 2014 senate race between Ms. Judd and Mitch McConnell would be absolutely fascinating. Yes, she’s mother-skeptical and practices yoga and speaks fluent French. But she’s also married to a famous race-car driver, frequently attends Kentucky Wildcat basketball games, and comes from one of country music’s royal families. Since she lives in Tennessee, she’ll have to establish some residence in the Bluegrass State, but she wouldn’t be relocating from Malibu. She grew up in Kentucky and went to college there.
    Before McConnell gets the pleasure of running against an anti-poverty activist who spends half her time in Scotland, he’ll have to fend off any primary challenges from his right. That won’t be easy. Consider what happened with Rand Paul just two years ago. It’s telling that McConnell has hired Rand Paul’s campaign manager. That’s part of his strategy. He also plans on playing the bad cop to John Boehner’s good cop.

    What does that mean?

    Apparently, it means that McConnell will let John Boehner fashion any compromises over tax and budget issues, and he’ll take a back seat on immigration, too. His theory is that the base won’t rebel against him if he shows absolutely no leadership on or authorship of any negotiated settlements in Congress.

    This is going to be problematic in practice, and it is probably hopelessly optimistic. John Boehner has to pass legislation while McConnell only needs to consent to allow legislation to be passed. But Boehner also presides over a more conservative caucus than McConnell. It is much easier for McConnell to give five votes to the Democrats than it is for Boehner to get most of his caucus to vote for something that the Senate Democrats like and that the president will sign.

    If the Senate Republicans are going to eschew any leadership and just sit around waiting for Boehner to spit up something that the base pretty much hates, it’s going to be a long two years. McConnell’s strategy just contributes to the gridlock and dysfunction in Congress. And he’ll try to get off the hook by saying, “I didn’t negotiate that deal and I didn’t vote for it.” But if he didn’t filibuster it, he allowed it to happen. The Republican base is going to be miserable as they watch Boehner try to force his caucus to keep the government’s doors open. And they’ll look to McConnell to kill any deals they don’t like.

    Does the Republican base like any deals? With this president?

    Sitting back and taking no leadership is going to whipsaw McConnell. He is going to get primaried and he is going to get chewed up to the point that he might actually lose to a Hollywood starlet so liberal that even I would have second thoughts about voting for her.

  30. Watch live: McCain and other GOP senators hold press conference on Benghazi attack

  31. Ametia says:


    What’s up Eric?

    House Majority Leader Eric Cantor has some tall explaining to do to the leadership on Capitol Hill.

    On October 27, Cantor learned from an FBI employee that an investigation had discovered CIA Director David Petraeus was having an extramarital affair. Cantor did nothing about that information, except to ask his chief of staff, Steve Strombres, to inform FBI Director Robert Mueller, according to ABC News. Four days later, October 31, Strombres notified Mueller. Meanwhile, House Speaker John Boehner and House Homeland Security Committee chairman Peter King (R-N.Y.) — two key House members with a need to know — were left in the dark by Cantor.

  32. Smoke rises following an Israeli air strike in Khan Yunis, southern Gaza Strip, on November 14, 2012. (AFP Photo / Said Khatib)

  33. Luke Russert’s offensive question to Nancy Pelosi

  34. BREAKING: Netanyahu officially announces military operation against Palestinian military parties in Gaza

  35. John McCain says he will do everything in his power to block a Susan Rice appointment:


    And he’s the one who put that dumb ass Sarah Palin on the national stage? How dare him!

  36. Wisconsin Lawmakers Seek To Arrest Officials Who Implement Obamacare

  37. Bryan Fischer: ‘Clamp down’ on ‘socialist’ Hispanics who voted for Obama

    While many Republicans are calling on their party to be more inclusive after stinging losses in the 2012 election, the director of issues analysis of a conservative fundamentalist Christian organization says that it’s time to “clamp down” on immigrants because Hispanics voted for President Barack Obama.

    “Hispanics are not Democrats, don’t vote Democrat because of immigration,” the American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer said in video posted by Right Wing Watch on Tuesday. “It has to do with the fact that they are socialists by nature. They come from Mexico, which is a socialist country. They want big government intervention, they want big government goodies.”

  38. GOP governors say no to secession efforts

  39. Breaking News‏@BreakingNews

    Israeli air force hits multiple Gaza targets, including Hamas police stations, @Reuters witness says

  40. Nancy Pelosi delivers remarks at news conference

  41. Rachel Maddow’s dark warning about the Petraeus scandal

  42. Democratic Minority Leader @NancyPelosi (D-CA) will not step down. Her press conference airs on C-SPAN2 momentarily.

  43. John McCain: Susan Rice ‘not qualified’ for State

    Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said on Wednesday that U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice is “not qualified” to become secretary of state and he called her claim that the deadly attack on the diplomatic facility in Benghazi was a spontaneous demonstration “not very bright.”

    “She’s not qualified,” McCain said on CBS’s “This Morning.” “Anyone who goes on national television and in defiance of the facts, five days later — We’re all responsible for what we say and what we do. I’m responsible to my voters. She’s responsible to the Senate of the United States. We have our responsibility for advice and consent.”


    John McCain, what’s not very bright is putting the country at risk when you asked the empty head, nothing in the skull but empty fluid Sarah Palin as your VP candidate. That’s what’s not very bright. With that…stfu!

  44. The New York Times‏@nytimes

    The Caucus: Pelosi to Remain in Congress and Continue as Democratic Leader

  45. Obama Election Has Prompted Explosion of White Male Anger

    Nov. 6 just may go down as the worst day in American history—at least for a certain segment of American white male.

    The reelection of Barack Obama on Tuesday appears to have caught a large swath of white males by surprise, perhaps because they had been listening to a steady stream of completely fabricated pronouncements from the right-wing echo chamber about the inaccuracy of the polls, about the certainty of a resounding Romney victory. So their shock at Obama’s relatively easy win seems to be exacerbating the racist-fueled anger that many of them already were exhibiting in the months leading up to the election.

    Led by common sense-challenged forces like Donald Trump, white male anger is exploding on websites all across the web, with nasty name calling, cries for the South to secede, mass emigration to Europe (of all places) or even the breakup of the United States.

    “Welcome to a truly white minority world,” wrote a commenter on Stormfront, the world’s largest white supremacist Web forum, run by a former Alabama Klan leader. “The future is now. There is no denying this. The sun has set on humanity’s greatest era: 1500-2000. … [T]he only way to survive this war of Annihilation is separatism. … [W]e have to choose regions or states.”

    Mark Potok, head of the Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks white supremacist groups, wrote that the radical right had already been driven to an apoplectic state by the news that there were more non-white babies born in the United States last year than white babies.

  46. rikyrah says:


    Howard Dean’s vindication, six years later

    By Steve Benen
    Wed Nov 14, 2012 9:11 AM EST.

    Going into the 2006 midterms, then-chairman of the Democratic National Committee Howard Dean, pushed an ambitious plan that the party establishment strongly disliked. It was called the “50-state strategy.”

    The party believed limited DNC resources needed to be invested in key districts and swing states, but Dean envisioned a bottom-up party infrastructure literally everywhere in the country. The idea that the party would spend money on a ground game in non-competitive “red” states was seen as the height of madness, and the 50-state strategy led to some notorious shouting matches between Dean and then-DCCC Chairman Rahm Emanuel.

    In the end, Dean executed his plan, and that year, Democrats won back the House and Senate. Barack Obama largely emulated the 50-state model two years later, en route to the White House.

    And six years later, the right is starting to think Dean’s model is worth emulating.

    Karl Rove offered some advice to his fellow Republicans about what the party needs to do to prevent last Tuesday’s election from happening again on Sean Hannity’s radio show Monday. On the list: when it comes to engaging voters, be more like former Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean.

    “I hate to say it, but we need to copy what Howard Dean did,” he told Hannity. “And that is make our ground game in all 50 states.” […]

    Rove told Hannity that the lack of GOP ground game made a big difference in other states. “We didn’t have a ground game in a lot of these states with Senate races and so we lost North Dakota by 3,300 votes,” he said. He added the lack of ground game also cost the GOP a chance at winning the Senate seat in Montana. “We need to have a better ground game in all 50 states,” Rove said.

  47. rikyrah says:

    Learning to negotiate

    By Steve Benen

    Wed Nov 14, 2012 8:35 AM EST.

    For much of his first term, President Obama went about negotiating with congressional Republicans in all the wrong ways. He had a habit of starting in the middle, presenting GOP leaders with a sensible, moderate compromise, intended to garner bipartisan support. Republicans would counter with far more conservative counteroffer, leading to deals well to the right of where Obama (and his party) wanted to end up.

    With a White House scheduled to host a bipartisan, bicameral discussion later this week, it appears the president is getting better at negotiating.

    President Obama is taking a hard line with congressional Republicans heading into negotiations over the year-end fiscal cliff, making no opening concessions and calling for far more in new taxes than Republicans have so far been willing to consider.

    Obama plans to open talks using his most recent budget proposal, which sought to raise taxes on corporations and the wealthy by $1.6 trillion over the next decade, White House press secretary Jay Carney said Tuesday. That’s double the sum that House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) offered Obama during secret debt negotiations in 2011.

    The $1.6 trillion figure suggests Obama expects higher rates on income above $250,000 — a policy Republicans fiercely oppose, despite public support — as well as additional new tax revenue from limiting itemized deductions, restoring the estate tax to 2009 levels, and related measures.

  48. rikyrah says:

    The Difference Between Hacks and Real Progressives

    Today, President Obama met with labor leaders and threw the opening salvo at the Republicans regarding the upcoming negotiations on ways to avoid the fiscal cliff (or slope, or whatever term you want to use): $1.6 trillion in new revenue through higher tax rates and closing loopholes for the top income earners. But as these negotiations begin, there is a marked difference between real progressive and labor leaders who plan to back the president up and the loud, screeching professional whining hacks. Here’s what Leo Gerard of the United Steeleworkers had to say last night on Ed Schultz’s television show:

    Leo Gerard: “I’m wearing my shirt tonight and I’m telling our members and the whole world, the steelworkers are ready to go… Ed, we’re not going to make the same mistake that we made last time. The last time, we should have been out on the street with the president on the stimulus bill, we should have been out the street with the president on the Affordable Care Act, and we let him down, I think. We sat on our hands. Well, we’re not going to do that this time.”

  49. rikyrah says:

    Obama meets privately with women’s groups

    In addition to attending a much-ballyhooed meeting with civic and labor leaders on Tuesday, President Obama also met privately with women’s groups.

    The meeting wasn’t on his public schedule but included many of the same administration officials: senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, Cecilia Munoz of the Domestic Policy Council and Gene Sperling, director of the National Economic Council.

    “There was very much a sense of the importance that women played in the election — If not for women, we may very well have been having a meeting with a different president or president-elect,” Maatz [Lisa Maatz, director of the American Association of University Women] said. “We expect him to dance with the one who brought him.”

  50. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning Ametia SG2 and Everyone :)

  51. Ametia says:


  52. Ametia says:

    Fiscal Cliff Scare Talk Follows Shock Doctrine Script

    If you have already read The Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein you have probably been rolling your eyes at all this “Fiscal Cliff” scare talk. “Here they go again” you’re thinking… If you haven’t read the book, you should. You really, really should.

    The Phony “Fiscal Cliff” Scare

    At the end of the year the Bush tax cuts expire. When this happens tax rates will rise modestly to where they were when Clinton was President. Also at the end of the year budget “sequestration” occurs. This means that the various cuts Congress approved to end the debt ceiling “crisis” will begin to phase in. (Remember, the debt-ceiling “crisis” was when Republicans refused to allow the country to honor its debts, holding the economy hostage, unless they got deep budget cuts in the things We the People do for each other.)

    That’s it. That’s the “crisis.” All of the people who had been hysterical about the budget deficit “crisis” are now hysterical that taxes will go up and spending will go down. Go figure. Maybe — just maybe — I shouldn’t even say it — these “serious people” weren’t … serious … when they said they were worried about the deficit. You see, the hysteria now is because tax rates at the top will go up (cutting the deficit), and because a big part of those budget cuts (cutting the deficit) is military spending. Unfortunately the sequestration also cuts important things that help a lot of people and our economy. But these cuts do not take place all at once (a “cliff”), they will be phased in over time, and the Congress can act at any time to halt any of these cuts.

    The “Fiscal Cliff” is not a cliff and the language itself is intended to scare people . The name itself is designed to create panic, evoking disaster imagery of people and the economy falling off a cliff. It is the latest manufactured “crisis” and we are all supposed to be terrified and demand immediate and extreme solutions.

  53. Ametia says:

    The Confederacy of Takers
    By Dana Milbank,
    Nov 14, 2012 12:10 AM EST

    The Washington Post Published: November 13

    President Obama’s opponents have unwittingly come up with a brilliant plan to avoid the “fiscal cliff.” They want to secede from the union.

    If Obama were serious about being a good steward of the nation’s finances, he’d let them.

    The White House, in one of those astro-turf efforts that make people feel warm about small-d democracy, launched a “We the People” program on its Web site last year, allowing Americans to petition their government for a redress of grievances. Any petition that receives 25,000 or more signatures within 30 days is promised a response (though not necessarily a favorable one) from the Obama administration.

  54. Ametia says:

    Good Morning, Everyone! If you have any Democratic Mayors you’d like to see featured this week; let me know.

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