Tuesday Open Thread | 1963 March on Washington Heroes: Asa Philip Randolph

This week is the 50th Anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington for Justice and Jobs. Let’s look back at some of the heroes of the March.


Today’s hero is Asa Philip Randolph.

a philip randolph-1


Asa[1] Philip Randolph (April 15, 1889 – May 16, 1979) was a leader in the African-American civil-rights movement, the American labor movement and socialist political parties.

He organized and led the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, the first predominantly black labor union. In the early civil-rights movement, Randolph led the March on Washington Movement, which convinced President Franklin D. Roosevelt to issue Executive Order 8802 in 1941, banning discrimination in the defense industries during World War II. After the war Randolph pressured President Harry S. Truman to issue Executive Order 9981 in 1948, ending segregation in the armed services.

In 1963, Randolph was the head of the March on Washington, which was organized by Bayard Rustin, at which Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his “I Have A Dream” speech. Randolph inspired the Freedom budget, sometimes called the “Randolph Freedom budget”, which aimed to deal with the economic problems facing the black community, particularly workers and the unemployed.

Union organizer

Randolph’s first experience with labor organization came in 1917, when he organized a union of elevator operators in New York City.[7] In 1919 he became president of the National Brotherhood of Workers of America,[8] a union which organised amongst African-American shipyard and dock workers in the Tidewater region of Virginia.[9] The union dissolved in 1921, under pressure from the American Federation of Labor.

His greatest success came with the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, who elected him President in 1925.[7] This was the first serious effort to form a labor institution for employees of the Pullman Company, which was a major employer of African Americans. The railroads had expanded dramatically in the early 20th century, and the jobs offered relatively good employment at a time of widespread racial discrimination. Because porters were not unionized, however, most Pullman porters were exploited and underpaid.[5]

Under Randolph’s direction, the BSCP managed to enroll 51 percent of porters within a year, to which Pullman responded with violence and firings. In 1928, after failing to win mediation under the Watson-Parker Railway Labor Act, Randolph planned a strike. This was postponed after rumors circulated that Pullman had 5,000 replacement workers ready to take the place of BSCP members. As a result of its perceived ineffectiveness, membership of the union dropped by half.[5]

Fortunes of the BSCP changed with the election of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1932. With amendments to the Railway Labor Act in 1934, porters were granted rights under federal law. Membership in the Brotherhood jumped to more than 7,000. After years of bitter struggle, the Pullman Company finally began to negotiate with the Brotherhood in 1935, and agreed to a contract with them in 1937. This gained employees $2,000,000 in pay increases, a shorter workweek, and overtime pay.[10] Randolph maintained the Brotherhood’s affiliation with the American Federation of Labor through the 1955 AFL-CIO merger.[11]

Civil rights leader

Through his success with the BSCP, Randolph emerged as one of the most visible spokespeople for African-American civil rights. In 1941, he, Bayard Rustin, and A. J. Muste proposed a march on Washington[7] to protest racial discrimination in war industries, an end to segregation, access to defense employment, the proposal of an anti-lynching law and of the desegregation of the American Armed forces.[12] Randolph’s belief in the power of peaceful direct action was inspired partly by Mahatma Gandhi’s success in using such tactics against British occupation in India.[13] The march was cancelled after President of the United States Franklin D. Roosevelt issued Executive Order 8802, or the Fair Employment Act.[7] Some activists, including Bayard Rustin[14] felt betrayed because Roosevelt’s order applied only to banning discrimination within war industries and not the armed forces. Nonetheless, the Fair Employment Act is generally considered an important early civil rights victory.

And the movement continued to gain momentum. In 1942, an estimated 18,000 blacks gathered at Madison Square Garden to hear Randolph kick off a campaign against discrimination in the military, in war industries, in government agencies, and in labor unions.[15] Following passage of the Act, during the Philadelphia Transit Strike of 1944, the government backed African-American workers’ striking to gain positions formerly limited to white employees.[16]

Buoyed by these successes, Randolph and other activists continued to press for the rights of African Americans. In 1947, Randolph, along with colleague Grant Reynolds, renewed efforts to end discrimination in the armed services, forming the Committee Against Jim Crow in Military Service, later renamed the League for Non-Violent Civil Disobedience. When President Truman asked Congress for a peacetime draft law, Randolph urged young black men to refuse to register. Since Truman was vulnerable to defeat in 1948 and needed the support of the growing black population in northern states, he eventually capitulated.[5] On July 26, 1948, President Harry S. Truman abolished racial segregation in the armed forces through Executive Order 9981.[17]

In 1950, along with Roy Wilkins, Executive Secretary of the NAACP, and, Arnold Aronson,[18] a leader of the National Jewish Community Relations Advisory Council, Randolph founded the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR). LCCR has been a major civil rights coalition. It coordinated a national legislative campaign on behalf of every major civil rights law since 1957.

Randolph and Rustin also formed an important alliance with Martin Luther King, Jr. In 1957, when schools in the south resisted school integration following Brown v. Board of Education, Randolph organized a Prayer Pilgrimage with Martin Luther King, Jr. In 1958 and 1959, Randolph organized Youth Marches for Integrated Schools in Washington, DC.[5] At the same time, Randolph arranged for Rustin to teach King how to organize peaceful demonstrations in Alabama and to form alliances with progressive whites.[14] The protests directed by Rustin and King in cities like Birmingham and Montgomery provoked a violent backlash by police and the local Ku Klux Klan throughout the summer of 1963, which was captured on television and broadcast throughout the nation and the world. Rustin later remarked that Birmingham “was one of television’s finest hours. Evening after evening, television brought into the living rooms of America the violence, brutality, stupidity, and ugliness of {police commissioner} Eugene “Bull” Connor’s effort to maintain racial segregation.”[19] Partly as a result of the violent spectacle in Birmingham, which was becoming an international embarrassment, the Kennedy administration drafted civil rights legislation aimed at ending Jim Crow once and for all.[20]

Randolph finally realized his vision for a March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom on August 28, 1963, which attracted between 200,000-300,000 to the nation’s capital. The rally is often remembered as the high-point of the civil rights movement, and it did help keep the issue in the public consciousness. However, when President Kennedy was assassinated 3 months later, Civil Rights legislation was stalled in the Senate. It was not until the following year, under President Lyndon B. Johnson that the Civil Rights Act was finally passed. In 1965, the Voting Rights Act was passed. Although King rightly deserves great credit for these legislative victories, it is hard to underestimate the importance of Randolph’s contributions to the civil rights movement

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52 Responses to Tuesday Open Thread | 1963 March on Washington Heroes: Asa Philip Randolph

  1. I wished upon the Blue Moon and danced in the pale moonlight.

  2. The unredacted IRS treasury report was released today and it turns out Darrell Issa LIED about the whole scandal.


    The unredacted IRS treasury report was released today and it turns out we’ve all been lied to in a huge way. Progressive groups were singled out for scrutiny just like conservative groups. But worse than that, the IRS Inspector General misled Congress about this fact during testimony and in letters, and the progressive terms were “redacted” in the original report.

    Perjury charges!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. rikyrah says:

    from Ed Kilgore:

    August 20, 2013 3:46 PM
    Counting On False Equivalency
    By Ed Kilgore

    But today Greg pays close attention
    to some town hall commentary from House Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlette, and figures he might have heard the party-line rationale for doing nothing while avoiding blame:

    “Will the Senate agree to them [House provisions}? I don’t know,” Goodlatte said. “But I don’t think Republicans in the House … should back away from setting forth the right way to do things.”

    “Even if it doesn’t go all the way through to be signed by
    this president — because I have a hard time, like you do, envisioning him signing some of those things — it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t at least show the American people that we are interested in solving this very serious problem that we have in our country,” he added later….

    Ultimately, the fate of immigration reform rests in the
    hands of John Boehner and the GOP leadership. But Goodlatte will play an important role in influencing the debate inside the GOP caucus. Right now, some advocates think GOP leaders — particularly Paul Ryan and even Boehner to some degree — want to find a way to get to comprehensive reform. But others think they are merely making nice noises designed to bide their time, giving themselves cover to let reform die later while doing whatever they can to minimize the blame for it amid a bout of finger-pointing by both sides. Goodlatte’s comments show us what the latter approach could end up looking like.

    Yep. I’ve feared all along that House Republican leaders thought the only threshold they needed to cross was to look serious about immigration reform and “address” it via legislation the Senate could not accept. The complexity of the issue, and most of all the tendency of the MSM to blame both sides for every “impasse,” would do the rest in mitigating the partisan damage GOPers would suffer from killing comprehensive reform. I don’t think this cynical strategy is going to fool Latino voters, but it might be enough to get Republican leaders out of the dilemma they are currently in and onto the 2014 campaign trail, and that’s probably what they most care about right now.


  4. rikyrah says:

    One Last Time: Here’s the Real Reason the Pentagon is Facing $20 Billion in Extra Cuts Next Year

    —By Kevin Drum
    | Tue Aug. 20, 2013 2:58 PM PDT

    Why is the Pentagon facing an “extra” $20 billion in cuts under sequestration next year? Yesterday I said that it was due to a redefinition of “security” in the budget language between 2013 and 2014. Today, CAP’s Michael Linden tells me that although it’s possible this played a role, the real answer lies elsewhere. What follows is fairly number-heavy, and if you don’t want to read it, I don’t blame you. But I’ll try to keep it as simple as I can.

    Here’s the main issue: it turns out that under the Budget Control Act, the baseline budget for domestic spending goes up between 2013 and 2014. But it stays flat for defense spending. In addition, the amount of the sequester goes up because (a) it’s for a full 12 months, and (b) the fiscal cliff deal reduced the 2013 sequester levels.

    For 2014, the sequester amount is roughly $54 billion for both domestic and defense. However, about $17 billion of the domestic sequester is for mandatory spending (primarily in reduced Medicare reimbursements). Once that’s all netted out, here are the numbers for domestic discretionary spending:


    The net effect of all this is that defense spending has to decrease by $20 billion compared to last year, while domestic spending stays at the same level. This is a one-time effect, since the baselines for both domestic and defense spending rise slightly each year in 2015 and beyond.


  5. rikyrah says:

    Ulysses S. Gat @RARE_KING

    Chris Hayes on MSNBC is an annoying little upitty shit
    7:24 PM – 20 Aug 2013

  6. Yahtc says:

    Original program for the 1963 March on Washington:


  7. Yahtc says:

    A 25 minute compilation by Jinal007 on Youtube of all available musical video performances from the 1963 March on Washington:

  8. Here we go again. This is madness! Gun control now!

    BREAKING: Sheriff official: Suspect in shooting at Georgia school had assault rifle, dressed in black:


    DECATUR, Ga. (AP) — A sheriff’s official says a gunman carrying an assault rifle fired shots into the air outside an Atlanta-area elementary school and was taken into custody a short time later.

    Authorities say no one was injured Tuesday afternoon at Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy in Decatur, a few miles east of Atlanta. Children are being reunited with their parents at a nearby store.

    DeKalb County Sheriff administrative aide Lt. Kyle Jones says the suspect was dressed in all black and there didn’t appear to be any damage to school property.

    Jones says the suspect surrendered without trouble when U.S. Marshals and officials from the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office found him in the school’s front office.

    The suspect’s identity has not yet been released. Jones says he was being held for questioning at police headquarters.

  9. Ametia says:

    Here’s a slogan for anti-ACA fools.

    If you don’t have healthcare, and don’t need or want it, STAY THE FUCK OUT of our way!

  10. Blue moon tonight: What does that mean, anyway?


    Tuesday night will see a relatively rare phenomenon: A blue moon. What is a blue moon? We’ll explain.

    There’s something special about tonight’s full moon. If you look up at the night sky, you’ll see a rare blue moon. No, it won’t actually appear blue, nor is it the second full moon of the month. So what makes it a blue moon?

    Tonight’s moon is what’s now called a “seasonal blue moon.” It’s the third full moon in a season that has four, rather than the usual three, according to Space.com. That’s actually the original definition of the term, which is thought to come from an Old English word meaning betrayer, because a third full moon usually means the end of a season. Seasonal full moons are rare. Miss this one, and you won’t get another chance until May 21, 2016.

    The other definition of blue moon came about relatively recently. The phrase was first used to describe the second full moon in a calendar month by an amateur astronomer writing for Sky and Telescope magazine in 1946. It was a mistake, but after the phrase was repeated by a syndicated radio program in 1980, the definition stuck. The magazine wrote in 2006 that the modern definition is “like a genie that can’t be forced back into its bottle,” The Weather Channel reported.

    Of course, there is a third definition, where the moon actually does appear blue in color. To see that, you’d have to live near an erupting volcano. NASA’s Tony Phillips said that large particles of ash from an exploding volcano can scatter red light and allow other colors to pass. That would cause white moonbeams to appear blue or sometimes green.

    Weather permitting, tonight’s blue moon will be a beautiful sight. It may not look very different from any other full moon, but then this kind of thing happens only once in a blue moon.


    smileys pray photo: pray beg mood_guilty.gif

  11. Ametia says:

    1972 Miami Dolphins at White House

    August 20, 2013 2:48 PM EDT — Four decades after their undefeated season, President Obama honored the 1972 Miami Dolphins at the White House. (Sarah Parnass / The Washington Post



  12. Hey Chicas!

    Sooo, Ted Cruz wasn’t BORN here? Where are the fking birthers on this?

  13. rikyrah says:

    August 20, 2013 10:09 AM
    Why There Is No Obamacare “Replacement” Agenda

    By Ed Kilgore

    In some pretty classic news-the-listener-doesn’t-want-to-use, Newt Gingrich told the Republican National Committee meeting in Boston this week that Republicans needed to get their act together and offer some kind of alternative to the Affordable Care Act of 2010 if they want to win the “war on Obamacare.” Per Bloomberg’s John McCormick:

    Saying that most Republican lawmakers have “zero answer” for how they would replace “Obamacare,” Gingrich also said, “We are caught up right now in a culture — and you see it every single day — where as long as we are negative and as long as we are vicious and as long as we can tear down our opponent, we don’t have to learn anything.”

    He termed that approach “a very deep problem.”

    “If we’re going to take on the fight with Obamacare, we have to be able to explain to people what we would do to make your life better,” Gingrich, a former U.S. representative from Georgia and House speaker, later told reporters. “It can’t just be going back to the world that led to Obamacare.”

    I dunno. Some of what passes for health reform “thinking” in the GOP these days makes the status quo ante in health care seem safe and reasonable. But as Ezra Klein points out today, the most immediate problem for conservatives is that they have rejected, with growing hysteria, their own “reform” heritage, and don’t have much to fall back on:


    If you go back far enough to recall that what became Medicaid was originally a Republican alternative to universal health coverage, the repudiation of their own ideas in the war on Obamacare becomes pretty much complete.

    But the GOP’s problem on health policy goes deeper than having to erase their own tracks. There are three persistent obstacles to the development of a conservative “replacement” for Obamacare.

    (1) A growing tendency to oppose the very idea of redistribution of risk and cost, which is essential not just to public health reform efforts, but to private health insurance. Conservatives often seem to want to go back to those days when patients paid doctors with cash or did without health care altogether. That’s “personal responsibility” with a vengeance.

    (2) An inability to accept the need for national regulation of health insurance. The single biggest trap for Republicans on health policy right now is the wild popularity of measures to end discrimination against people with pre-exisisting health conditions. There is no way to effectively make that happen without national regulation of health insurers. Instead, GOPers are moving in the opposite direction, with their “interstate insurance sales” gimmick that effectively preempts state regulation of insurers without substituting federal standards.


  14. rikyrah says:

    Steve Perry’s Bait and Switch on the Black Community

    Steve Perry tricked us.

    We all thought he was “one of us” to put the phrase colloquially. But actually, after all is said and done, he’s not. He’s one of “them.” By one of “them” I’m referring to that “we are respectable Negroes” ilk that has been getting some traction lately in the press. Seeing as how WordPress still hasn’t gotten the bright idea on how to imbed links coming from major news sites like MSNBC, here’s the link below. Check it out and come back.

    Following the fallout from CNN host Don Lemon cosigning with Bill O’Reilly on things that black people need to do in order to be successful, the black blogosphere erupted mostly in unison and the concept of the politics of respectability entered the discussion. Now this was something I’ve talked about quite often here on my blog and I saw it for what it was, but it was finally a discussion that had some wind beneath it’s wings to raise it to the national conscience for the time being. As Don Lemon seriously suggested that black men should pull up their pants, stop saying the “N” word, value education, and stop having babies as the salve to the problem in the black community, many focused on the ludicrous nature of the first and last of his suggestions.

    Enter Steve Perry.

    steve perry 1Steve Perry was clapped back by the rest of the panel and Melissa Harris Perry as well this past Sunday on Melissa Harris Perry’s morning show when he suggested that there was a dual misdirection at the hands of the left and right wing. While the right wing was shifting toward these racial charged memes around sagging pants and black single parents and teenage mothers, the left is focused more about white people killing blacks [perhaps surrounding the death of Trayvon Martin? Police brutality cases? Random acts of racial violence? I’m not sure what Steve Perry was alluding to] rather than the black on black violence. Melissa, the other Perry in the room, said that was what pissed her off the most about the misdirection, and I couldn’t agree more.

    At that moment, it was when I decided to classify Steve Perry as one of those “them” I described earlier.

    I did a fair number of rants following the verdict of Travyon Martin that were found on my Facebook page and my Twitter page, and I found that most of them were in response to the insipid misdirection that the right wingers had decided to take. Rather than discussing structural problems with how race is perceived and the notions of white privilege, the conservatives held fast that the verdict was fair under the law and Juror B37 was there to corroborate those sentiments and ultimately it the Al Sharptons of the world who decided to make this case about race.


    Nevertheless, I am a product of a public school and I turned out fine. The vast majority of my friends went to public schools and even when I got to a private college, the majority of the students went to public schools. My point is that the models for decent enough education that’s not scraping the bottom does exist in the public school model. And as a taxpaying citizen, I firmly believe in the institution of public education. That being said, I’m sure the switch was probably always there, but I noticed it a bit earlier this year when Perry said he was in favor of school choice.

    He can miss me with all that


  15. rikyrah says:

    Here’s how Republicans may try to kill immigration reform

    By Greg Sargent, Published: August 20 at 1:44 pm

    As I’ve been arguing, the August recess has brought a bit good news on immigration: we’ve seen at least a few House Republicans trying to sincerely grapple with the issue and move towards comprehensive reform.

    Now for the bad news: GOP Rep. Robert Goodlatte — who wields influence over immigration as Judiciary Committee chair — has now shown us what it will look like if House Republicans decide to kill reform, while trying to evade blame for it.

    Goodlatte is being closely watched by both sides. Some have noted Goodlatte’s willingness to entertain a path to citizenship (without any special pathway), while others believe Goodlatte is more likely to end up sticking a knife in comprehensive reform’s back while talking a nice game about doing something for the DREAMers even as he winks at the right.

    Goodlatte made some comments at a town hall meeting late yesterday that are attracting attention because he opposed a “special pathway” to citizenship. That matters, but it’s not really new, and far more important is something else he said. This quote, captured by HuffPo’s Elise Foley, is potentially significant:

    The bills that House Republicans do support may go nowhere, Goodlatte, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, told constituents and immigration activists gathered in a large public meeting room.

    “Will the Senate agree to them? I don’t know,” Goodlatte said. “But I don’t think Republicans in the House … should back away from setting forth the right way to do things.”

    “Even if it doesn’t go all the way through to be signed by this president — because I have a hard time, like you do, envisioning him signing some of those things — it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t at least show the American people that we are interested in solving this very serious problem that we have in our country,” he added later.


  16. rikyrah says:

    There won’t be any GOP alternative to Obamacare

    By Jonathan Bernstein, Published: August 20 at 12:04 pm

    We’re hearing more and more rumblings from top Republicans that the GOP’s current position on Obamacare is untenable — that the party can’t continue to call for the destruction of Obamacare forever without offering any alternative. The push from the right for a shutdown has only drawn that into sharper relief, and so we’re finally hearing that Republicans — finally! — will make good on their promise, now 30 months overdue, to come up with the “replace” part of repeal-and-replace.

    It ain’t gonna happen. There won’t be any serious GOP alternative to Obamacare.

    The first problem with developing an alternative to the Affordable Care Act is that there just may not be any policy alternative that comes close to accomplishing what the law accomplishes. At first, it looked like conservatives would leave themselves a way to propose their own version of the same reforms in Obamacare, and rename it on their own terms. As such, there seemed to be a method to it when, at the outset, conservatives worked hard to prevent an actual discussion of the substance of the law itself. Much of the initial hatred of the ACA was focused on a series of phony talking points and outright lies (“government takeover” of health care; “death panels”; the law was “rammed through” using corrupt procedural tricks; etc.).

    Since none of that was true, it gave Republicans an opening: they may have stigmatized “Obamacare,” but they hadn’t stigmatized the policy ideas at the core of the law — the combination of exchanges and subsidies that actually started out as a Republican plan, as Ezra Klein explains in detail today. In other words, as late as 2012 it seemed plausible Republicans could choose to invent a ConservaCare proposal based on Ronald Reagan Marketplaces that would basically offer a slightly different spin on the same underlying idea.

    But conservatives have decided that no policy overlap with Obamacare is acceptable.


  17. rikyrah says:

    The Morning Plum: Republicans may need Nancy Pelosi to bail them out

    By Greg Sargent, Published: August 20 at 9:19 am

    Top Democrats are increasingly convinced House Republicans will not be able, on their own, to avoid a catastrophic outcome in this fall’s fiscal confrontations. If true, it will mean Republicans will need lots of Democratic help either to raise the debt limit, or to continue funding the government, or both. They’ll need Dem help to avoid outcomes many Republicans themselves believe would be politically disastrous for their party.

    This belief among Dems is only intensifying as the conservative push for a shutdown to defund Obamacare continues. In an interview with me, Dem Rep. Chris Van Hollen — a key member of the Dem leadership — said Dems expect Republicans to resolve internal differences by passing a debt limit hike with some kind of anti-Obamacare provision attached to make it palatable to conservatives. Van Hollen said:

    “At the end of the day, Speaker Boehner will have to work with House Democrats if he wants to prevent the U.S. from defaulting on our debt obligations. It is possible House Republicans could pass a bill to lift the debt ceiling out of the House with Republican votes alone, but only if they attach ridiculous conditions — like the defunding of the Affordable Care Act.”

    If true, this adds a significant complication to this fall’s confrontations. The basic idea would be that Republicans would bridge their intra-party divide over whether to use maximally destructive tactics — whether a government shutdown or a debt limit battle — to stymie Obamacare, by passing something that makes both sides happy.


  18. rikyrah says:

    Did the British Have Good Reason to Detain Greenwald’s Partner in Crime?

    Monday, August 19, 2013 | Posted by Spandan C at 6:35 AM

    Yesterday, Glenn Greenwald made an international incident out of the fact that his partner was detained in London’s Heathrow airport for questioning. But in a comical twist only Greenwald can tie himself into, Greenwald can’t seem to settle on whether in this trip, his partner was his errand boy or just an uninvolved person. On the one hand, Greenwald’s tirade against the British authorities mentions:

    “This is obviously a serious, radical escalation of what they are doing. He is my partner. He is not even a journalist.”
    Well, neither is Glenn, but I digress. So on the one hand, Greenwald’s partner, David Miranda, is an uninvolved bi-stander. But on the other Miranda was not just Greenwald’s partner but his partner in crime who was carrying documents on his trip to Berlin for Laura Poitras, Greenwald’s colleague in reporting the Snowden stories. The Guardian – Greenwald’s employer – paid for the trip.

    And that, fellow traveler, brings us to what could be the real reason Greenwald and his employer are trying to make this an international incident and concentrating fire on the British authorities. In public, they may be focusing on the fact of the detention, but in private, they are soiling their undergarments not over the detention itself, but over this:

    David Miranda, the partner of Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald, was held for nearly the maximum time authorities are allowed to detain individuals under the Terrorism Act’s Schedule 7, which authorizes security agencies to stop and question people at borders. Greenwald said Miranda’s cellphone, laptops and memory sticks were confiscated.

    Now, Greenwald of course claims that this was a blatant attempt to intimidate journalism. Except, what if it wasn’t? What if the equipment seized contains evidence of criminal activity?

    Huh? Whacha talkin’ ’bout, Mister? Follow me.


  19. rikyrah says:

    McDonnell has made ‘the prospect of his continued leadership untenable’
    By Steve Benen
    Tue Aug 20, 2013 10:40 AM EDT

    As the details surrounding Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell’s (R) corruption scandal become more damaging, calls for the Republican governor’s ouster are growing louder.

    Yesterday, the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin, a prominent voice in Republican media, said it’s time for McDonnell to go, and today, The Virginian-Pilot, a Norfolk-based paper that’s the largest in the commonwealth, reached the same conclusion.

    T]he revelations have raised substantial new questions about the governor’s ties to the company. Those details include additional gifts provided by Williams to the governor’s family, as well as confirmation that the governor’s wife, Maureen McDonnell, twice purchased shares of Star Scientific stock with money loaned to her by Williams.

    As The Pilot’s Julian Walker reported, those stock purchases establish a direct financial connection between the McDonnells and the company that the governor and first lady have touted during his term. The governor’s explanation — that he didn’t know the extent of his wife’s financial dealings with Williams — doesn’t change that.


  20. rikyrah says:

    A ‘nail in the coffin’ of the IRS ‘scandal’
    By Steve Benen
    Tue Aug 20, 2013 12:52 PM EDT.

    Remember when the IRS story looked, way back in May, like a legitimate political controversy? With every passing revelation, the misguided uproar looks a little sillier.

    The ranking Democrat on the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee ranking member, Sander Levin, D-Mich., released new information Tuesday from the Internal Revenue Service to provide further evidence that progressive groups were singled out for scrutiny as were conservative groups.

    The documents include an IRS training presentation that instructs IRS employees to screen tax-exemption applications for Democratic leaning “Emerge” organizations alongside “progressive” and “tea party” organizations.

    Three organizations tied to the national Emerge America organization — Emerge Nevada, Emerge Maine and Emerge Massachusetts — sought tax-exempt status on 2011. They were denied — the group, which helps recruit and train Democratic women for electoral politics, was deemed too political.


  21. Ametia says:

    Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia: Court shouldn’t ’invent new minorities’
    Tuesday, August 20, 2013, 11:21 AM

    ‘It’s not up to the courts to invent new minorities that get special protections,’ Scalia told a packed hotel ballroom in southwestern Montana.
    The U.S. Supreme Court is making decisions that should be left to Congress or the people, from wiretapping to “inventing” new classes of minorities, Justice Antonin Scalia said Monday.

    In an apparent reference to the court’s recent decisions on gay marriage and benefits for same-sex couples, Scalia said it is not the function of the courts to create exceptions outside the Constitution unless a majority of people agree with them.

    “It’s not up to the courts to invent new minorities that get special protections,” Scalia told a packed hotel ballroom in southwestern Montana.

    The Supreme Court earlier this year cleared the way for same-sex marriages to resume in California and struck down part of a federal law that prevents legally married gay couples from receiving benefits. Scalia voted against the majority of justices

    Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/supreme-court-justice-antonin-scalia-court-shouldn-invent-new-minorities-article-1.1431659#ixzz2cWxrAASZ

  22. Ametia says:



  23. rikyrah says:

    Republican Vote Suppression Hitches Ride on Detroit’s Woes

    By Francis Wilkinson Aug 20, 2013 8:54 AM CT

    According to a study released this month by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, only 54 percent of Americans have a driver’s license before their 18th birthday. One survey found that 46 percent of people in the U.S. ages 18 to 24 would choose access to the Internet over access to their own car.

    Auto companies are in a panic over teens’ declining interest in their product. The AAA report cites a precipitous “downward trend” in licensing rates among high school seniors, with 85 percent reporting that they had a license in 1996, but only 73 percent reporting that in 2010.

    The decline increasingly has implications for voting behavior, as well. At least 22 states have introduced Voter ID laws, according to the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University. North Carolina just enacted a whirlwind of vote-suppression tactics that, as Rick Hasen writes here, has already made a mockery of the Supreme Court’s Shelby County v. Holder ruling, which claimed it could curtail the Voting Rights Act without significant impact.

    A valid driver’s ID, the standard photo identification issued by states, is accepted for purposes of voting. But as fewer young people obtain driver’s licenses, the routine connection between adulthood and a photo ID is increasingly broken. Other forms of government ID — military identification, for example — are either limited to a small subset of youth or require specific efforts, and sometimes money, to obtain.

    The partisan implications are clear: In 2012, President Barack Obama captured 60 percent of votes cast by Americans ages 18 to 29. And when it comes to driver’s licenses, there is a wide disparity between poor and minority teens, who are even more likely to vote Democratic, and wealthy and white teens.


  24. rikyrah says:

    ‘Why don’t we impeach him?’
    By Steve Benen

    Tue Aug 20, 2013 11:10 AM EDT

    Borrowing a page from Bill Maher, I’d like to establish a new rule: those who propose presidential impeachment should come up with some sort of coherent rationale for doing so. And before conservatives ask, no, “I don’t like Obama” is not an actual reason.

    Last week, Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-Tex.) not only expressed an interest in impeaching President Obama, he said proponents “could probably get the votes in the House of Representatives to do it.” On what grounds? Farenthold didn’t get around to explaining why the president would be impeached, though in context, it apparently had something to do with what the Texas Republican described as “the whole birth certificate issue.”

    And then last night, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said something similar

    In a question and answer session following a speech he gave at a Montgomery County GOP dinner last night, an audience member asked Cruz, “Why don’t we impeach him [Obama]?”

    “It’s a good question,” Cruz responded, “and I’ll tell you the simplest answer: To successfully impeach a president you need the votes in the U.S. Senate.”

    Actually, it’s not a good question, and to successfully impeach a president you need the votes in the U.S. House. But other than that, the right-wing senator clearly knows what he’s talking about.

    National Review posted an audio clip of the Cruz event, and listeners will notice that neither the senator nor his audience actually bothered mentioning a rationale for impeachment; they just seemed to think it was a good idea. Cruz said something about his belief that Obama has acted outside the law, but he offered no details or specifics.


  25. Ametia says:

    Hat tip DU


  26. Ametia says:

    Rosa Parks’ attorney: ‘If the story would be told, I’d have to tell it’ (podcast)

    Fred D. Gray was 24 years old when he defended Rosa Parks after she was arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a bus to a white person in Montgomery, Ala. But the story you might think you know is not the full story.

    “We had an understanding that at some point, the two of us were going to tell the rest of the story together,” said Gray in an interview with the ABA Journal’s podcast editor Lee Rawles. “But I realized some years before Mrs. Parks’ death that her health–both physically and mentally–was of such that she wouldn’t be able to do it. And if the story would be told, I’d have to tell it.”

    Gray had written his autobiography, Bus Ride to Justice: The Life and Works of Fred Gray, in 1995. In it, he discussed Rosa Parks’ case, but left out the full details. So in 2012, after Parks had passed away, Gray started to put together a revised edition, which has now been released.

    In addition to providing the back story to the Montgomery bus boycott and his work defending Martin Luther King, Jr., Gray’s autobiography discusses how his case Browder v. Gayle desegregated the bus system in Montgomery; how he tried the cases which achieved school desegregation in Alabama; how he represented the victims of the Tuskegee Syphilis Study; and how he became the first African-American president of the Alabama State Bar Association. Gray was also one of the lawyers for the seminal libel case Times v. Sullivan.

    PODCAST HERE: http://www.abajournal.com/books/article/podcast_episode_024/?utm_source=maestro&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=daily_email

  27. rikyrah says:

    McCrory office on $ 22,000 DHHS raises: No comment (to us), defends salaries to TV station (with update)

    Young Republicans who helped elect North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory have been rewarded with big salaries in his new administration. Matthew McKillip was named this week as chief policy adviser to Health and Human Services Secretary Aldona Wos. Records show the 24-year-old received a $22,500 raise in April, bringing his salary to $87,500. Before joining state government in January, McKillip worked for McCrory’s 2012 campaign and spent 11 months as a research assistant at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank. Records show 24-year-old DHHS Communications Director Ricky Diaz got an even bigger raise in April, boosting his state salary to $85,000. Diaz campaigned for McCrory after working for one year in the office of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. Gov. Pat McCrory gave his cabinet secretaries pay hikes as large as $13,200, far more than anything afforded to typical state employees in recent years. The Republican’s cabinet makes a combined $1.1 million – an 8 percent increase from his Democratic predecessor.

    “I’m trying to make it at least where they can afford to live while running multibillion-dollar departments,” McCrory said in an interview. GOP lawmakers changed state law last year to give the governor the power to determine cabinet salaries, a change from the previous year when all eight secretaries made $121,807, as set in state law. The additional money will come from other areas in the agency budgets.


  28. rikyrah says:

    Chill Chad Stanton ‏@chadstanton9m
    So Winston-Salem State University is having its polling place closed on a rumor because …voter fraud

    Winston-Salem St. polling place next on GOP hit list
    2013-08-19 17:26

    The newly appointed Republican chairman of the Forsyth County Board of Elections says he plans to eliminate an early voting site at Winston-Salem State University, the Winston-Salem Journal reports.

    Chairman Ken Raymond said he will move Tuesday to shut down the voting site at the historically black campus after hearing talk that a professor had offered students extra credit for going to the polls, which he said was a violation of the law. He offered no proof.

    Last week, the Watauga Board of Elections voted to close the voting site on the campus of Appalachian State University in Boone.

    Republicans on the Pasquotank County Board of Elections also voted last week deny an Elizabeth City State University senior from running for city council, ruling that that his on-campus address couldn’t be used to establish residency. The county chairman said he planned to challenge the voter residency of other students at the historically black school.


  29. Ametia says:

    Ted Cruz: ‘I Will Renounce Any Canadian Citizenship’

    By Abby D. Phillip
    Follow on Twitter
    Aug 19, 2013 4:10pm

    WASHINGTON — Here are the facts: Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, who may run for president in 2016, was born in Canada and his mother was a U.S. citizen.

    Most legal scholars and Cruz agree that he’s an American. And if Cruz chooses to run for president in 2016, his technical Canadian citizenship shouldn’t matter, either.

    But it seems to matter to Cruz.

    After a spokesman initially denied that Cruz was a dual citizen, the senator said in a statement that he will renounce his Canadian citizenship.

    “Now the Dallas Morning News says that I may technically have dual citizenship,” Cruz said. “Assuming that is true, then sure, I will renounce any Canadian citizenship.

    “Nothing against Canada, but I’m an American by birth and as a U.S. senator, I believe I should be only an American.”

    Cruz released a copy of his birth certificate to the Dallas Morning News over the weekend, proving that he was, in fact, born in Calgary, Canada, on Dec. 22, 1970. According to an expert in Canadian law quoted by the Dallas Morning News, that means “he’s a Canadian.”

    But at first Cruz, through a spokesman, denied that he was a Canadian citizen, despite the incontrovertible fact that he was born there.


  30. rikyrah says:

    People lining up for tickets to see Pres. Obama Thurs. at UB. Free tickets available today at 5PM. #POTUSBuffalo

  31. Ametia says:

    Lawmakers: LePage said Obama ‘hates white people’
    By Eric Russell erussell@pressherald.com
    Staff Writer

    Two Republicans say the governor made the remark during a fundraiser in Belgrade last week.

    Gov. Paul LePage told a group of Republicans last week that President Obama “hates white people,” according to two state lawmakers who say they heard the remark directly.

    The governor made the comment during a Maine Republican Party fundraiser on Aug. 12 at the home of John and Linda Fortier in Belgrade. According to the invitation, the fundraiser was a “meet and greet” for LePage and first lady Ann LePage, and an opportunity to meet Rick Bennett, the new party chairman.

    The lawmakers, both Republicans, confirmed the comment when asked by a Portland Press Herald reporter but asked that their names be withheld for fear of political retribution.

    Each said LePage talked about how Obama could have been the best president ever if he had highlighted his biracial heritage. LePage said the president hasn’t done that because he hates white people.

    “Yeah, he said it,” said one of the lawmakers. “It was one little thing from a speech, but I think most people there thought it was totally inappropriate.”


  32. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone at 3CHICS!

    • Yahtc says:

      Aww, they are so happy together!

    • Liza says:

      Sunny is gorgeous. It will be interesting to see how Sunny becomes integrated into the family (pack.) I’m pretty sure that Bo Obama sees his pack this way and has already placed Sunny in her position:
      1. Mom
      2. Bo
      3. President Obama
      4. Malia
      5. Sasha
      6. Sunny

  33. Yahtc says:

    Justice is never given; it is exacted and the struggle must be continuous for freedom is never a final fact, but a continuing evolving process to higher and higher levels of human, social, economic, political and religious relationship.

    -A. Philip Randolph

  34. Yahtc says:


    What a great week of history you are providing us as the 50th Anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington approaches!

    I enjoyed watching the two informative videos that you found and posted here.

    Thank you very much!

    I also have been exposed EVERY day to important news articles that I might never have seen were it not for your dedicated work and hours of searching the news and bringing these articles to us. You are a steadfast supporter of just causes, and it shows each day here through the issues you bring to this site. I am grateful !

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