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The General 'Murican Politics Thread

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For sure. I live in Portland, a fairly “liberal/progressive” city, and I definitely feel as if despite the label, and assumption, they still retain and harbor racist policies and refuse to take steps to better the situation for groups like lgbt, blacks, etc. especially in regards to poverty, education, and dealing with the police and having our cases taken seriously. Bigotry can effect all sides of the political spectrum when there’s personal gain from oppressing others or looking the other way from a problem and pretending it’s not there.(or in the case of progressives/liberals/Democrats a lot of times, focusing the outrage on issues that while worth discussion and addressing, don’t really call attention to the pressing issues that would require massive change of the system they reside in and gain from.) A lot of what they propose comes off as big talk, and what’s really needed is little smaller points that can lead to these changes that can benefit all groups within society 

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2 hours ago, RedFox99 said:

Apologies for the detour, but do you guys believe liberals can be bigoted?

Yes, they can. But not to the same degree as conservatives due to them usually practicing what they preach by comparison.

You can see a lot of it as a karmic backlash against conservatives that are bigoted, but it comes at the cost of both actually listening to each other. Nevermind that some liberals don’t actually believe in what they say and just use their political leanings to gain power, like some in Congress or even those like Hillary Clinton.

That also doesn’t prevent them from being homophobic, racist, or bigoted against religion. But even with this being the case, such bigotry is a lot more egregious with those further on the right—that’s not saying every conservative is like this, as there are those that will do the right thing despite their personal beliefs.

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11 hours ago, RedFox99 said:

Apologies for the detour, but do you guys believe liberals can be bigoted?

Absolutely. The level of disdain for the rural working class is eye opening sometimes.

I always like when Democrats talk about how the party's future lies in the suburbs and not in the countryside, personally.

Because that too is eye opening, because a Democratic Party based in the suburbs will be locked towards neoliberalism.

8 hours ago, Conquering Storm’s Servant said:

Yes, they can. But not to the same degree as conservatives due to them usually practicing what they preach by comparison.

A word of fairness here: conservatives give a lot more to charity as a proportion than liberals. Even when they are poorer. This is considered to be motivated by religiosity, but it's key to remember a lot of "conservative circles" actually have anarcho-collectivist ideas. They are practicing what they preach in terms of believing in individual charity as a means to create a social safety net.

Quote

That also doesn’t prevent them from being homophobic, racist, or bigoted against religion. But even with this being the case, such bigotry is a lot more egregious with those further on the right—that’s not saying every conservative is like this, as there are those that will do the right thing despite their personal beliefs.

We do not have as many polarized leftists as we do polarized conservatives, however. Were a real, ideologically coherent left to form in this country, things could change.

On the right you get fascists, but on the left you can get tankies.

Especially when one considers how much of American politics is people with left wing economic values being coopted on the basis of right wing cultural values. A lot of Americans love social programs, they just hate when non-whites get them.

4 hours ago, Jiren (Metro) said:

Some disheartening news

Your thoughts on this @Coyote (Ogilvie) ?

Just shows how important it is to get out and vote next month, really. Plus, with the Kavanaugh hearing set to wrap up, it's entirely possible the enthusiasm gap will widen again. That's the fun part about the midterms: it is the angry customers who vote more. Democrats will remember Kavanaugh's confirmation more than Republicans.

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https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/05/politics/senate-kavanaugh-vote/index.html

The Senate has voted to advance Kavanaugh's nomination to a final vote tomorrow.

The vote was 51-49, mostly party line but with GOP Senator Lisa Murkowski voting against and Democratic Senator Joe Manchin voting for.

Even if Manchin votes No tomorrow, Pence will be there to break the tie, and that will make Kavanaugh the first Justice to be confirmed by the Vice President.

This would be a fantastic time for Jeff Flake to honor Senator McCain by doing what he did: voting to advance the vote, then issuing Trump a soul crushing defeat on the actual vote.

https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/05/politics/collins-kavanaugh-vote-nomination-announcement/index.html

Kavanaugh's confirmation is not a for-sure thing, however. Collins, Murkowski, Flake and Manchin have all declined to commit to a final Yes vote. It is still possible Manchin, Flake, and Collins will vote against Kavanaugh on the actual vote, and that will sink him.

3 hours ago, RedFox99 said:

Does any have the full list of candidates for the midterm election?

Most jurisdictions send out sample ballots ahead of election time so you can see all your choices for each office and conduct research.

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I swear it’s always those guys who fuck things up. Why do we keep on pretending that these guys will do anything except vote to save their own skins, and constantly keep on pinning our hopes for people who are clearly too spineless to ever consider the decent thing?

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http://maristpoll.marist.edu/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/NPR_PBS-NewsHour_Marist-Poll_USA-NOS-and-Tables_1809251359.pdf#page=3

54% of Republicans (and 12% of Democrats and 31% of Independents) say Brett Kavanaugh should be confirmed even if the Ford allegations are true.

That's rather concerning.

https://www.cnn.com/politics/live-news/kavanaugh-fbi-investigation-oct-18/h_4a3fa60128149f3c52d1040ec8446b02

Breaking: Jeff Flake has said he will vote Yes on Kavanaugh. Murkowski is a no.

That leaves Manchin and Collins. If they both vote No, Kavanaugh is finished.

https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/05/politics/donald-trump-protesters-george-soros-brett-kavanaugh/index.html

Meanwhile, Trump's contempt for the First Amendment has reared its ugly head again as he says the protesters are basically paid Soros plants.

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Susan Collins and Joe Manchins have said they will vote Yes tomorrow. Short of last minute shenanigans, Justice Kavanaugh will be a thing.

Collins just toasted her credentials as a leading voice for women on the GOP side. If Kavanaugh is part of any huge pro-life decision, I hope Collins gets raked over the electoral coals in 2020.

She's been in politics long enough to know a justice nominee saying "settled law" is a smokescreen, since the Court can change precedent whenever it wants. She deserves to be punished.

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https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/05/politics/susan-collins-kavanaugh-vote/index.html

You did it guys! You got a conservative court. Sure, you threw away two centuries of precedent, America's standing on the world stage, and whatever ethics you may have had to do it, but you did it. After all, it's better to risk putting a rapist on the Supreme Court than giving the Democrats any sort of victory right? As long as the lefty snowflakes keep shedding those libtard tears it's all worth it, right? Savor your victory Republicans. I hope you choke on it.

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Clarence Thomas is 70. I can only pray he doesn't think to retire under Trump. If a Democrat wins in 2020 and 2024, they have a good chance at shifting the balance back.

The next Democratic President also needs to convince Ginsburg and Breyer, both in their 80s, to step down so they can be replaced with younger liberals. Scalia was 79 when he passed.

This nonsense is really highlighting why an amendment to abolish the life term in favor of long, staggered terms would be a good idea.

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https://www.cnn.com/2018/08/29/politics/harris-funeral-homes-lawsuit/index.html

given Brett Kavanaugh’s views on lgbt people along with the republicans being the ones in charge of the scoutus, I legit fear what this will mean for cases like this. God I really wish we could speed up the process of getting these pieces of shit out of these positions of power 

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All eyes will be on Chief Justice Roberts going forward. While he argued against gay marriage in the initial case, he ended up siding to protect gay rights in later cases. It's widely assumed he is politically savvy and understands LGBT rights are not the hill for conservatives to die on. Roberts also is the reason we still have Obamacare, when Mr. Oh-so-moderate Kennedy would have voted to strike it down completely.

Roberts presumably knows any huge rollbacks of abortion rights or LGBT rights will anger Democrats and make the #PackTheCourt movement a lot stronger. He would be wise to err on the side of caution.

In the world of Trump and Mitch McConnell steadily unraveling everything respectable about government, Chief Justice Roberts really is the last hope here.

That's a depressing thought, but that's where we are. He gets to decide the tone of American politics going forward. Namely, whether we decide to keep our separation of powers or begin the road towards parliamentary supremacy.

 

https://www.yahoo.com/news/susan-collins-triggers-2-million-211042811.html?.tsrc=fauxdal

Breaking: Susan Collins has generated $2 million in donations to her 2020 opponent's campaign. As of right now, there is no formal opponent, but the funds will be held in escrow. The funds will only be charged if she votes Yes tomorrow.

This is clearly a tactic to convince her to change her mind, seeing how many people she's pissed off.

Will she? Who knows.

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Remind me again what the benefits if the democrats only manage to take back congress this November but not the senate? Because i'm beginning to get the feeling taking congress alone won't be enough to counter any of this shit.

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2 hours ago, Jiren (Metro) said:

Remind me again what the benefits if the democrats only manage to take back congress this November but not the senate? Because i'm beginning to get the feeling taking congress alone won't be enough to counter any of this shit.

They will launch so many investigations, they can commence impeachment proceedings against Kavanaugh and Trump and anyone else if they have the will to do so, they can finally get a hold of Trump's mysterious tax returns, and more. Congress holds a good bit of power, and they hold the purse strings of the government too, so they can interfere with the budget if it shits on their base. Most importantly: they can pretty much halt Trump's legislative agenda.

It's rare for a party to hold both Houses for very long, short of some major catastrophe generating a Rally Behind The Flag effect (9/11 did this), so while it'd be great to see the Senate flip (it'd need to flip in an unprecedented way for impeachments to result in removals from office btw), just the House flipping would be a great thing.

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What's more, the House flipping ironically could end up saving our government. For all the Framers' consensus that it would be the most unruly branch of the government, it actually might replace the Senate as the most bipartisan of the branches.

If the Democrats win, they're looking over a rules change which would allow bills with a certain number of cosponsors to bypass the Speaker and their power to block legislation that is too moderate for their liking. This would allow Democrats to work with moderate Republicans and get an impressive number of bills on the floor, which no doubt would also fare well in the Senate.

There are so many Senate bills which have passed by excellent, often veto-proof, margins, only to die in the House due to the Hastert Rule (the Speaker only allows votes on legislation that half their party approves). If the Hastert Rule dies, then we might get serious progress on things like DACA reform, Obamacare reform, etc.

There are still plenty of moderates on both sides in the House. They've just been forced to be quiet for decades as the parties become more and more polarized. With the Senate rapidly declining in quality, the House may ironically be what keeps us from descending into complete mob rule.

Here's the consolation prize to conservatives even if the Democrats take the House: Nancy Pelosi's time as an all-powerful Speaker will probably be over very fast. Even if she keeps the position, the Speakership is liable to lose a lot of power due to rules changes.

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Update: Having moved to ActBlue, the effort to raise money for Collins' 2020 opponent has hit $3 million.

For comparison, Collins had about $6 million on hand for her 2014 campaign.

Collins has historically been able to court an enormous amount of support in a traditionally blue state, but this decision seems to have eroded all that goodwill. Collins voted against Betsy DeVos, saved Obamacare, has routinely defended Planned Parenthood and abortion rights, but her decision to so casually give Kavanaugh a pass might just cost her her seat in 2020.

A watchdog group has asked the DOJ to investigate and see if this would count as illegal bribery. I think not, since they're not paying Collins, just threatening to back her challenger if she does not do what they want. If this is illegal, that would make the NRA a much bigger culprit, because it routinely threatens to back primary challengers if a Republican caves even a little on gun control.

https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/05/politics/susan-collins-2020-challenge/index.html

Former Obama National Security Adviser and UN Ambassador Susan Rice has hinted she might run against Collins in 2020. She has not fully committed, but it's not looking good for Collins.

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1 hour ago, Coyote (Ogilvie) said:

If this is illegal, that would make the NRA a much bigger culprit, because it routinely threatens to back primary challengers if a Republican caves even a little on gun control.

Doesn't Planned Parenthood also pay money to Democrats as well?

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6 minutes ago, RedFox99 said:

Doesn't Planned Parenthood also pay money to Democrats as well?

Yes, but that's slightly different from the situation being described here. That is money basically paid in exchange for taking a policy view, even if it is not technically so.

In the Collins funding case, the activists are saying they will back her opponent or not based on what she does. Now while the watchdogs are screaming bribery, I'm not sure it qualifies. Every interest group makes implicit threats with its funding. Planned Parenthood and the NRA always have an implicit threat they will back primary challengers more in line with their views.

It's why I do not think it would class as bribery. Collins is not being offered the money herself for a No vote. She's just on notice that there is a tidal wave of money ready to go to her opponent if she votes Yes.

It's largely semantics, but if threatening a politician's campaign prospects counts as bribery, then logically every citizen who has said "if you do this, you lose my vote" also needs to be charged with bribery.

In short the realities of democracy make it hard to claim "bribery" for most things. I think there's a stark difference between a large number of people pooling money and threatening to donate it to an opponent and something like a coal executive slipping a politician a personal check in exchange for loosening coal regulations. In fact, the Supreme Court's been quite clear that money is free speech, so threatening to give or withhold funds is most likely protected.

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https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/06/politics/midterms-early-voting/index.html

Early voting opens this week in several states, everyone.

Monday: California, Iowa
Tuesday: Montana, Nebraska
Wednesday: Arizona, Indiana, Ohio
 
Many states close their registration in the next few days. Be sure to check with your Secretary of State!
 

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Ginsburg will for certain be retiring between 2020 and 2024, IIRC - she made her intention known not too long ago. I believe she's probably waiting and hoping for a Democratic victory in the next general election.

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