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The General 'Murican Politics Thread

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On 1/10/2019 at 6:02 PM, Coyote (Ogilvie) said:

Yang is an Asian-American in his mid-40s. His campaign pitch is focused on establishing a universal basic income.

Mmm, interesting, considering that the concept of needing a job to live is going to have to go away in, well not sure what sort of term to call it, it really depends on how bad you're willing to let the situation get.  Short version: The threat of replacing truckers with automated trucks is pretty huge, general automation is getting advanced and generic enough to replace factory workers, and AI could start replacing more generic creative fields.  

8 hours ago, Jiren (Metro) said:

Is there any way Congress can end the shutdown without the Senate? 

The only way to override a veto is with 2/3 of both houses, all I can think of would be for the house to vote to impeach him but then it's up to the senate again from there.  

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Julian Castro has officially joined the 2020 brawl. If elected, he would be the first Hispanic President.

This candidate field being rich in minorities is extremely promising.

It also has another benefit: there are so many "firsts" in play, that none of them can really hope to have an edge on the basis of minority status alone. Policy will be what really matters here. Which means candidates like Booker, Harris, Gabbard, etc. are in for a fun time, because they all have nasty things ready to crawl out at a moment's notice and harm their campaigns.

I know Yang's odds are long because of his relative obscurity, but I really hope he mops the floor with all these neoliberal assclowns. He's Bernie on steroids: he could easily use his basic income as a weapon to steal tracts of Trump country concerned about the loss of jobs.

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I'm so fucking stoked to see Castro join the race, but if he gets far in the primaries, or even nabs a spot on the ticket, his surname will become the new "Barack HUSSEIN Obama." A communist-flavored cudgel to raise the hackles of the uninformed and the ignorant, rather than an Islamic one. The end result will be the same, and indeed I could see a new birther movement springing up, Trump at the helm, implying that Castro was born in Cuba.

He's a great guy, but his last name will hinder him, so maybe he'd be better off as the VP on the 2020 ticket.

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On 1/11/2019 at 4:13 PM, Jiren (Metro) said:

Is there any way Congress can end the shutdown without the Senate? 

On 1/12/2019 at 12:17 AM, Phos said:

The only way to override a veto is with 2/3 of both houses, all I can think of would be for the house to vote to impeach him but then it's up to the senate again from there.  

The Senate at large isn't necessarily the problem here, Republicans aren't exactly thrilled with the shutdown either and there's a good chance the House bill would garner enough support to override a veto. The problem is the Senate can't vote on legislation without Mitch McConnell's approval. As long as he refuses to budge the House bill is stuck in Limbo.

If things get really bad the Democrat's could try threatening to impeach Trump for dereliction of duty and hope either he or McConnell will back down. I think Nancy Pelosi would  rather not do that, for a myriad of reasons, but it may wind up being the only way for her to end the shutdown without giving in to Trump (which would be tantamount to telling him he can get whatever he wants if he shuts down the government long enough), assuming she's not willing to resort to blackmail or murder.

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It's really a shame there's no path forward for ousting McConnell. The right of the party won't do it because they like him. The moderates won't do it because it'd undoubtedly lead to serious primary challenges on the basis they didn't support the President. And trying to go around him will invoke McConnell's wrath and ensure that Senator's policies get nowhere in the future. And they can't plot with Democrats to get rid of McConnell or limit his power because that would also lead to primary challenges.

The wall is a powerful symbol on both sides of the aisle, and it's keeping Pelosi, McConnell and Trump from caving.

McConnell's position as leader is pretty secure so he has no incentive to cave; tying his position to Trump's is actually a brilliant move. Trump and Pelosi, by contrast, both will be up again in 2020 and have maximum incentive to dig their heels in (especially since Pelosi already passed a bunch of bills). They're each going to wait to see who has the greatest chance of backlash before making a move.

And honestly? It will likely be Trump. There are signs of an impending recession, and he will be the one that gets blamed for it no matter what. So he will cave because he needs to get to work on bills like infrastructure that he could use to win re-election. His path to the White House was very narrow, and with the Rust Belt having gone back to the Democrats in the recent cycle, he does not have as strong a hand as he thinks.

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Quote

President Trump has gone to extraordinary lengths to conceal details of his conversations with Russian President Vladimir Putin, including on at least one occasion taking possession of the notes of his own interpreter and instructing the linguist not to discuss what had transpired with other administration officials, current and former U.S. officials said.

Trump did so after a meeting with Putin in 2017 in Hamburg that was also attended by then-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. U.S. officials learned of Trump’s actions when a White House adviser and a senior State Department official sought information from the interpreter beyond a readout shared by Tillerson.

The constraints that Trump imposed are part of a broader pattern by the president of shielding his communications with Putin from public scrutiny and preventing even high-ranking officials in his own administration from fully knowing what he has told one of the United States’ main adversaries.

As a result, U.S. officials said there is no detailed record, even in classified files, of Trump’s face-to-face interactions with the Russian leader at five locations over the past two years. Such a gap would be unusual in any presidency, let alone one that Russia sought to install through what U.S. intelligence agencies have described as an unprecedented campaign of election interference.

Quote

It is not clear whether Trump has taken notes from interpreters on other occasions, but several officials said they were never able to get a reliable readout of the president’s two-hour meeting in Helsinki. Unlike in Hamburg, Trump allowed no Cabinet officials or any aides to be in the room for that conversation.

If Trump wants the world to believe that he did not collude with Russia to win the 2016 election, he's going about it in entirely the wrong way. His behavior just screams "guilty," regardless of whether he is or isn't innocent. But what else can we expect from a man who has behaved this way his entire life? He's an idiot, with the instincts of a criminal, and undoubted ties to the organized crime and drug underworlds, who has always had smart people around to cover for him. Surely this house of cards must come crashing down at some point?

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On 1/15/2019 at 11:17 AM, KHCast said:

So I take it hamberders is the new covfefe lol 

I don't know about that, but I do know hamberders and covfefe both go great with some hickory smocked bacon.

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https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/424792-senate-immigration-talks-fall-apart

While McConnell, Pelosi and Trump are all digging in their heels, rank and file Senators have been trying to do what they do best: being the most pragmatic branch of government. They've been trying to work out a proposal that would fund the wall and reopen the government, but would also give legal protection to the Dreamers.

Sadly talks really didn't go anywhere because the belief was there's no way Pelosi will accept the wall, and there's no way Trump will accept giving legal status to Dreamers.

Now while progressives might be quick to slam their fists on the table and shout "No compromise!!," it is important to note there are more DACA recipients than abortion recipients. The wall is ineffective at best and a monument to racism at worst, but being able to give hundreds of thousands of people peace of mind seems like something to make it tolerable.

Also. Senate math. The GOP has good odds of a permanent Senate majority going forward, barring a periodic lapse in power. Tough compromises are going to be the way things are done in the future, unless one wants to do nothing at all.

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1 hour ago, Coyote (Ogilvie) said:

but being able to give hundreds of thousands of people peace of mind seems like something to make it tolerable.

What about the thousands of people that will then feel threatened, or in danger of now vilified racists? Not to sound like a “generic left wing liberal”, but, don’t their minds and concerns also matter just as much if not more than those that want the wall? I mean no doubt I can expect hate crimes to spike given this is some blatant as you said monument of racism

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1 hour ago, Coyote (Ogilvie) said:

The GOP has good odds of a permanent Senate majority going forward, barring a periodic lapse in power. Tough compromises are going to be the way things are done in the future, unless one wants to do nothing at all.

So wait, Democrats have a 0% chance of taking the senate and/or presidency next election? So basically the GOP has free reign to continue damaging the country into the foreseeable future, I need to lay down now.😔

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Dems are too split and scattered on goals and issues to have any soul focus or iconic member to rally for. I can definitely see republicans seizing that as a opportunity to continue their reign given they at least have their goals set out and have a decent support behind them 

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In the midst of all the shutdown talk, other things slipped through: namely, Pelosi has recently changed the rules of the House.

The really huge change? Any bill that gets 290 votes - two-thirds - of the House have to be expedited to the floor if no committee has sent them to the floor. The Speaker is also required to put at least one of these bills up for a vote once a week while the House is in session.

Pelosi just nuked the Hastert Rule. There is now a way to get bills to the House floor without the Speaker's approval. Remember that a lot of good bills that were crafted by pragmatic House and Senate members were sunk because the fringe of the ruling House party said no to them.

14 hours ago, KHCast said:

What about the thousands of people that will then feel threatened, or in danger of now vilified racists? Not to sound like a “generic left wing liberal”, but, don’t their minds and concerns also matter just as much if not more than those that want the wall? I mean no doubt I can expect hate crimes to spike given this is some blatant as you said monument of racism

Did you read the original post? This is assuming a situation where the wall is part of a compromise that gives legal status to the Dreamers.

There is no easy way forward here, because someone is going to get pissed off no matter what is done.

14 hours ago, Jiren (Metro) said:

So wait, Democrats have a 0% chance of taking the senate and/or presidency next election? So basically the GOP has free reign to continue damaging the country into the foreseeable future, I need to lay down now.😔

Not 0%, but minimal. In 2020, the Dems will go into the race with 47 seats. Realistically, they will lose Alabama.

That means they would have to win all 4 swingy seats - Colorado, Maine, Arizona, and Iowa - to grab just 50 seats. They'd have to win the Vice Presidency on top of that.

While there are a few other options - Montana, Georgia, North Carolina, West Virginia - those are tall orders, and any Democrat who takes those is likely to be very moderate.

As for the swingy seats, Arizona still leans red, Iowa has been trending red, and Maine has a very popular incumbent in Susan Collins. The Democrats will need a blowout election in 2020 to take the Senate.

Their best shot is actually in 2022, when a lot of Senators who came to power alongside Trump will be fighting for office. That's when Wisconsin, Iowa, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Florida are up. There is a caveat here: this relies heavily on the Presidency still being Republican. If the Democrats win the 2020 race, they will most likely lose seats in the Senate in 2022.

It's a bleak image overall. While there is a possibility for something crazy happening, the most reasonable expectation is Democrats will be locked out of the Senate for the foreseeable future. As it stands, the best they can hope for is to try and monopolize the Presidency, but every Democratic President will be like Obama and be hamstrung by a GOP Congress.

14 hours ago, KHCast said:

Dems are too split and scattered on goals and issues to have any soul focus or iconic member to rally for. I can definitely see republicans seizing that as a opportunity to continue their reign given they at least have their goals set out and have a decent support behind them 

That's not really the problem. The institutions as currently exist will favor the GOP having more or less permanent control of the Senate going forward, unless Dems find a strategy that helps them win red states. But that will likely involve compromises that will make the progressive wing of the Party bare its fangs.

It's almost like people forget the American constitution system was built to force compromise.

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It’s certainly possible Democrats could win some of those states, but yeah they’ll likely be moderate Dems which many within the party will not accept. like I said, parties a mess atm with little direction and compromises within. The progressives and “traditional” democrats seem to be at odds with each other, and then there’s the moderate group within that both seem to throw under the bus. Doesn’t help like you said, that many systems within the country are institutionally biased to the GOP. That’s a hurdle they’ll have trouble getting over in many states regardless of the unity of the party, but certainly not helping that they’re at each others necks. This countries over reliance on the two party system has really shown how bad this can be for everyone these last few years especially.

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Lol wow. This is quite a time to be alive alright 

On 1/17/2019 at 9:17 AM, Coyote (Ogilvie) said:

Did you read the original post? This is assuming a situation where the wall is part of a compromise that gives legal status to the Dreamers.

Also looks like this aged pretty well. Lol

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11 hours ago, KHCast said:

Trumps bargaining Dreamers legal status and protection in exchange for the wall

Temporary protected status, apparently. Nothing like what they need.

Naturally, the Democrats have rejected the proposition. Trump is not happy about that.

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