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Monday, December 23, 2013

What Exactly, Did Jesus Say?

People who use the bible as the basis for their hate don't need the bible, their hate is self sustaining.

Here is Everything Jesus says about homosexuality..


Thats right, Jesus said nothing about homosexuality but he spoke many times about the poor.    Below are some examples of what Christ said about the poor.   So the next time you hear some right wing republican suggest poor children sweep the floor so they can eat or that taking food support away from the poor will make them better people, pause and reflect on the thoughts of Jesus.

Luke 6:20-21

Then he looked up at his disciples and said: 'Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.

'Blessed are you who are hungry now, for you will be filled. 'Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh.
Luke 4:16-19
When he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the sabbath day, as was his custom.   He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him.   He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written:
'The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor.   He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favour.'

Matthew 25:34-36
Then the king will say to those at his right hand, "Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in
prison and you visited me."

Mark 10:21-22

Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said, "You lack one thing; go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me."   When he heard this, he was shocked and went away grieving, for he had many possessions.
Mark 12:41-44

He sat down opposite the treasury, and watched the crowd putting money into the treasury.   Many rich people put in large sums.   42 A poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which are worth a penny.   43 Then he called his disciples and said to them, "Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the treasury.   44 For all of them have contributed out of their abundance; but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on."
Luke 14:12-14

He said also to the one who had invited him, "When you give a luncheon or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, in case they may invite you in return, and you would be repaid.   But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind.   And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you, for you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous."

Luke 16:19-25

"There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day.   And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who longed to satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man's table; even the dogs would come and lick his sores.   The poor man died and was carried away by the angels to be with Abraham.   The rich man also died and was buried.
In Hades, where he was being tormented, he looked up and saw Abraham far away with Lazarus by his side.   He called out, 'Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in agony in these flames.' But Abraham said, 'Child, remember that during your lifetime you received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner
evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in agony.

Luke 11:39-42

Then the Lord said to him, "Now you Pharisees clean the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness.   You fools!   Did not the one who made the outside make the inside also?   So give for alms those things that are within; and see, everything will be clean for you.   "But woe to you Pharisees!   For you tithe mint and rue and herbs of all kinds, and neglect justice and the love of God

Luke 12:16-21

Then he told them a parable: "The land of a rich man produced abundantly.  And he thought to himself, 'What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?'  Then he said, 'I will do this:  I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods.   And I will say to my soul, 'Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.'   But God said to him,  'You fool!   This very night your life is being demanded of you.   And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?'   So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God."
Jesus said a lot about the poor.   Please, somebody remember this and proceed accordingly.

My apoligies for using religon to make a point and dragging it into politics.   I don't like to do this but every right winger I meet quotes one verse from the bible, always the old testament,  and acts as if that has not been superceeded by the new testament. 
Here are some Archaic Old Testament sins and punishments that time has left behind.

Punishment for adultery
Leviticus 20:10.   If any man commit adultery with the wife of another, and defile his neighbour's wife: let them be put to death, both the adulterer and the adulteress.
Leviticus 20:11.   If a man lie with his stepmother, and discover the nakedness of his father, let them both be put to death: their blood be upon them.
Leviticus 20:12.   If any man lie with his daughter in law: let both die, because they have done a heinous crime. Their blood be upon them.
Leviticus 20:14.   If any man after marrying the daughter, marry her mother, he hath done a heinous crime. He shall be burnt alive with them: neither shall so great an abomination remain in the midst of you.
Leviticus 20:17.   If any man take his sister, the daughter of his father, or the daughter of his mother, and see her nakedness, and she behold her brother's shame: they have committed a crime. They shall be slain, in the sight of their people, because they have discovered one another's nakedness. And they shall bear their iniquity.
Leviticus 20:19.   Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of thy aunt by thy mother, and of thy aunt by thy father. He that doth this, hath uncovered the shame of his own flesh: both shall bear their iniquity.
Leviticus 20:20.   If any man lie with the wife of his uncle by the father, or of his uncle by the mother, and uncover the shame of his near akin, both shall bear their sin. They shall die without children.
Leviticus 20:21.   He that marrieth his brother's wife, doth an unlawful thing: he hath uncovered his brother's nakedness. They shall be without children.
Deuteronomy 22:22.   If a man lie with another man's wife, they shall both die, that is to say, the adulterer and the adulteress: and thou shalt take away the evil out of Israel.

Punishment for having sex with a menstruating woman

Leviticus 20:18.   If any man lie with a woman in her flowers, and uncover her nakedness, and she open the fountain of her blood:   both shall be destroyed out of the midst of their people.

Leviticus 15:19.   The woman, who at the return of the month, hath her issue of blood, shall be separated seven days.

Levitcus 15:20.   Every one that toucheth her, shall be unclean until the evening.

Leviticus 15:21.   And every thing that she sleepeth on, or that she sitteth on in the days of her separation, shall be defiled.

Leviticus 15:22.   He that toucheth her bed shall wash his clothes: and being himself washed with water, shall be unclean until the evening.

Leviticus 15:23.   Whosoever shall touch any vessel on which she sitteth, shall wash his clothes: and himself being washed with water, shall be defiled until the evening.

Leviticus 15:24.   If a man copulateth with her in the time of her flowers, he shall be unclean seven days: and every bed on which he shall sleep, shall be defiled.

Punishment for working on Saturday

Exodus 31:15.   Six days shall you do work: in the seventh day is the sabbath, the rest holy to the Lord.   Every one that shall do any work on this day, shall die.

Exodus 35:2.   Six days you shall do work; the seventh day shall be holy unto you, the sabbath and the rest of the Lord: he that shall do any work on it, shall be put to death.

Punishment for disobedient children
Exodus 21:15.   He that striketh his father or mother, shall be put to death.

Exodus 21:17.   He that curseth his father or mother, shall die the death.

Deuteronomy 21:18.   If a man have a stubborn and unruly son, who will not hear the commandments of his father or mother, and being corrected, slighteth obedience:

Deuteronomy 21:19.   They shall take him and bring him to the ancients of the city, and to the gate of judgment,

Deuteronomy 21:20.   And shall say to them: This our son is rebellious and stubborn, he slighteth hearing our admonitions, he giveth himself to revelling, and to debauchery and banquetings:

Deuteronomy 21:21.   The people of the city shall stone him: and he shall die, that you may take away the evil out of the midst of you, and all Israel hearing it may be afraid.

Punishment for worshipping other gods

Exodus 22:20.   He that sacrificeth to gods, shall be put to death, save only to the Lord.

Deutoronomy 7:26.   Neither shalt thou bring any thing of the idol into thy house, lest thou become an anathema, like it. Thou shalt detest it as dung, and shalt utterly abhor it as uncleanness and filth, because it is an anathema. Sanctioning of slavery

Exodus 21:7.   If any man sell his daughter to be a servant, she shall not go out as bondwomen are wont to go out.

Exodus 21:8.   If she displease the eyes of her master to whom she was delivered, he shall let her go: but he shall have no power to sell her to a foreign nation, if he despise her.

Leviticus 25:44.   Let your bondmen, and your bondwomen, be of the nations that are round about you:

Prevention of the disabled from worshipping

Leviticus 21:17.   Say to Aaron: Whosoever of thy seed throughout their families, hath a blemish, he shall not offer bread to his God.

Leviticus 21:18.   Neither shall he approach to minister to him: If he be blind; if he be lame; if he have a little, or a great, or a crooked nose;

Leviticus 21:19.   If his foot, or if his hand be broken;

Leviticus 21:20.   If he be crookbacked; or blear eyed; or have a pearl in his eye, or a continual scab, or a dry scurf in his body, or a rupture.

Leviticus 21:21.   Whosoever of the seed of Aaron the priest hath a blemish: he shall not approach to offer sacrifices to the Lord, nor bread to his God. Punishment for bestiality

Leviticus 20:15.   He that shall copulate with any beast or cattle, dying let him die: the beast also ye shall kill. The beast also ye shall kill. . .The killing of the beast was for the greater horror of the crime, and to prevent the remembrance of such abomination.

Leviticus 20:16.   The woman that shall lie under any beast, shall be killed together with the same. Their blood be upon them.

References For Sins and Punishments

The Old Testament of the King James Version of the Bible

Phil Robertson can say and believe anything he wants to and he can take the flack he gets for saying it.    Freedom of speech is between the government and the citizen.    The company he works for (A and E) is free to react as they may please to Phil's speech.     It is the same for You and me.    Who knows how many people will be rubbed the wrong way by this article?

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Amherst County Virginia Democratic News



Sunday, December 22, 2013

2014: The Year Of Recovery

The GOP Slowed it Down but They Could Not Stop the Obama Recovery

All thru President Obama's first term republicans dragged their feet and obstructed the recovery of the economy.   The GOP did all they could do to make sure the recovery did not happen on Obama's watch.   Their master plan was to reclaim the Presidency and get the credit for the recovery that the ground work was laid for.   The economy would have rebounded two years ago had it not been for
the republicans slowing things down.   Their plan failed, Romney and Ryan failed to win the election and their callous lack of care for the American workwer exploded in their faces.   Now 2014 is set for a great recovery of the economy and no matter how hard republicans resist and fight against it, it will happen.   President Obama will get the credit he richly deserves.   Republicans sacrificed workers, jobs and the economy in their attempt to have power.   Until the GOP changes they do not deserve to be elected to any office and those voting for republicans are living in a dream bubble that will destroy the republican party.
Hard Right GOP Sends Donors to Democrats

Sharon Caliendo of Norman, Okla., worked for home state Republican Sens. Tom Coburn and Jim Inhofe.   She worked for Republican Gov. Mary Fallin. She worked for Sen. John McCain's (R-Ariz.) last Senate campaign.
But ever since the tea party gained a dominant hold on the GOP agenda, Caliendo has taken both her vote and her small campaign contributions to the Democrats.
"They've gone so hard right,"  Caliendo, who calls herself a Colin Powell Republican, said.   "They have no common sense left."
In 2012, Caliendo began making small donations to the reelection campaign of President Barack Obama.   After the election, she gave to the chief political arm of congressional Democrats, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.   She has now made more than 13 contributions totaling $376.
In the first 10 months of 2013, the DCCC dominated its Republican counterpart in fundraising.   It did so in no small part by attracting new donors like Caliendo, frustrated with the Republican-led House of Representatives.
"The tea party, more than anything, and their growing influence in Congress,"  said Mike Snider, who works on a Navy base in southern Maryland, when asked why he has made at least 17 contributions to the DCCC totaling $513 this year.
That may not seem like much when the most expensive 2014 House race has already topped $9 million in fundraising.   But Democrats have been remarkably successful at tapping huge numbers of small donors like Snider and Caliendo, who give over and over.   That success may translate beyond money in next year's elections. As Caliendo noted,  "Smaller donors are where the votes are at."
More than 15 percent of the DCCC's $65.2 million in fundraising through October -- or $10.1 million -- came from more than 11,700 donors who did not make a contribution in the 2012 election cycle, according to a review of Federal Election Commission records by The Huffington Post.
The National Republican Congressional Committee raised $5.7 million from more than 4,200 donors who did not give in 2012. Through October, the NRCC had raised $52.4 million.
More than half of the new DCCC donors made more than one contribution.   Nearly 700 individuals made 10 or more donations.   These repeat donors accounted for $3.4 million of the new donor money raised by the committee.   That may only be one-third of the total raised from new donors, but these repeat donors are far more likely to keep giving through Election Day 2014.
While the DCCC is successfully getting new donors to pony up multiple times, the NRCC is struggling.   Just 28 percent of new NRCC donors made more than one contribution.   Only 19 individual donors made more than 10 contributions.
The NRCC, heavily reliant on big donors, received more than half of its new money from donors giving $10,000 or more.   Donors giving $1,000 or more accounted for 90 percent of all new contributions to the Republican committee.
Big donors also played a huge role for the DCCC, with 47 percent of its new donor funds coming from those giving $10,000 or more.
Two-thirds of the new money came from donors making a contribution of $1,000 or more.
But donors giving less than $1,000 accounted for one-third of the new DCCC money.   The NRCC raised 10 percent from that category of donors.   These donors do not include those giving less than $200, the threshold for public disclosure of a donor's name and amount they gave.
Neither the DCCC nor the NRCC responded to requests for comment.

Controversy has aided the Democrats' fundraising successes.   The committee's two best fundraising months, among both overall and new donors, came during the 16-day government shutdown in October and the political standoff that led up to it.

"Mainly my giving works when [Republicans have] done something really stupid, made a really stupid remark, and the [DCCC] comes out with their thing saying can you give $5,"   Caliendo explained.   "In one week I think I gave like $250 because I was so mad.   That was leading into the shutdown."

The elevation of Democrats' enemies, like the austerity-promoting House Budget Committee chair Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), also helped rake in money.   The DCCC's third-best fundraising month came in March, after the House passed Ryan's budget, which would have cut Social Security and Medicare benefits.

These strategies are at the heart of the DCCC's successful digital fundraising program.   The committee has carefully tailored its appeals to Democratic partisans, angry at the tea party and the Koch brothers.   This is done through a stream of emails to the DCCC's massive list of supporters.

"Once you've given once, if you give them your email, you get lots of emails," Snider said.

Some help the DCCC raise more money.

Randall Redmon, a bagger and janitor at a Kroger supermarket in Versailles, Ky., has made more than 56 contributions totaling $370.

He posts every fundraising email he gets from the DCCC to Facebook and Twitter to try and help raise more money than he can give himself.

"If they say that Republicans are trying to steal something or take away something, I'm trying to get as many people as I can to help stop them," Redmon said.   "That's what I do. I spread the word." 
Supporters can set up a recurring donation to keep their support flowing, as Caliendo, Snider and Redmon, among many others, have done.

The DCCC also raises money through an online store, a tactic pioneered by the 2008 Obama presidential campaign.

"Sometimes I buy stuff from their store and that's like a contribution, too,"  Redmon said.   "Sweaters and stuff, and shirts."

These new Democratic donors will likely continue to pile on contributions whenever the DCCC amplifies the actions of House Republicans.    But there are always some important factors that could lead some to cut off their giving.

"It depends on how things are going with polls and my finances and my job," Snider said.

The elevation of Democrats' enemies, like the austerity-promoting House Budget Committee chair Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), also helped rake in money.   The DCCC's third-best fundraising month came in March, after the House passed Ryan's budget, which would have cut Social Security and Medicare benefits.

These strategies are at the heart of the DCCC's successful digital fundraising program.   The committee has carefully tailored its appeals to Democratic partisans, angry at the tea party and the Koch brothers.  This is done through a stream of emails to the DCCC's massive list of supporters.

"Once you've given once, if you give them your email, you get lots of emails," Snider said.   Some help the DCCC raise more money.
Randall Redmon, a bagger and janitor at a Kroger supermarket in Versailles, Ky., has made more than 56 contributions totaling $370.
He posts every fundraising email he gets from the DCCC to Facebook and Twitter to try and help raise more money than he can give himself.
"If they say that Republicans are trying to steal something or take away something, I'm trying to get as many people as I can to help stop them," Redmon said.   "That's what I do.   I spread the word."
Supporters can set up a recurring donation to keep their support flowing, as Caliendo, Snider and Redmon, among many others, have done.
The DCCC also raises money through an online store, a tactic pioneered by the 2008 Obama presidential campaign.
"Sometimes I buy stuff from their store and that's like a contribution, too,"  Redmon said.   "Sweaters and stuff, and shirts."
These new Democratic donors will likely continue to pile on contributions whenever the DCCC amplifies the actions of House
Republicans.    But there are always some important factors that could lead some to cut off their giving.
"It depends on how things are going with polls and my finances and my job,"  Snider said.
Republican Congressman Says Low-Income Kids Should ‘Sweep Cafeteria Floors’ in Exchange for Hot Lunch

                                            John Heddings "Jack" Kingston
Republican Congressman Jack Kingston of Georgia riffed on the failings of the federal school-lunch program in a speech at a Jackson County Republican Party gathering, saying:   "Why don't you have the kids pay a dime, pay a nickel to instill in them that there is, in fact, no such thing as a free lunch?   Or maybe sweep the floor of the cafeteria."    Kingston followed that by saying he realizes the concept is an "administrative problem" and would definitely lose money if instituted — most likely because someone would have to custom manufacturer all those millions of tiny push brooms.
Is it the voters who elected Kingston or the Congressman himself who have such a loose grip on reality?    Maby Both. 
When pressed for explanation, Kingston's spokesman fired back that it was "sad that trying to have a productive conversation about instilling a strong work ethic in the next generation of Americans so quickly devolves into the usual name-calling partisan hysteria."   He added:   "Having worked from a young age himself,  Congressman Kingston understands the value of hard work and the important role it plays in shaping young people."
Of course, that explains nothing, except that Kingston thinks plain-old primary school isn't hard enough work without a little hard labor thrown in.    Making low-income students into janitors while richer kids snack on with their deluxe Lunchables could just be the beginning.   There's potential for a tiered labor system here, one in which students with poor sweeping skills only merit mini milk cartons, while would-be Mr. Cleans are rewarded with ten-piece nugget meals.
Dumber things have already been happening over a couple cents on the dollar, so maybe it's only a matter of time until back-to-school circulars start featuring the latest in protective knee pads and radical new scouring sponges.



Saturday, November 30, 2013

GOP Committee Chairman Steps Down After Rape Charges

Robert Kerns resigned as chairman of Montgomery County's Republican Committee after being charged with rape of an unconscious victim, rape of a substantially impaired person, sexual assault, aggravated indecent assault without consent, manufacture, delivery or possession with intent to manufacture or deliver, tampering with physical evidence and related charges. 

NORRISTOWN, Pa. - November 26, 2013 (WPVI) -- The former chairman of the Montgomery County Republican Committee is in police custody, charged with drugging and sexually assaulting a female employee.

Robert Kerns is charged with indecent assault of a person unconscious, indecent assault of a person substantially impaired, and other offenses.

The alleged incident happened on October 25th. The victim was an employee at Kerns' private law practice at the time.

Prosecutors say Kerns met with the victim and tricked her, giving her wine laced with the sleeping medication Ambien.   They say he then sexually assaulted her both in his car and at her home after she passed out.

Court documents say the assaults were violent and that the victim suffered severe injuries as a result.

In detailing the alleged assault, Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Ferman said Kerns planned the entire assault in advance and tried to cover his tracks afterward.    The charges against him include evidence tampering.

Ferman described the victim as "very courageous" in coming forward.

The incident was first reported to Upper Merion Police on October 31st, six days after it occurred.    But Ferman said the victim took the unusual step of going to the hospital for testing immediately, before reporting the assault to police.

That allowed crucial evidence to be preserved, including traces of Ambien still in the victim's system, as well as DNA evidence linking Kerns to the assault, Ferman said.

Kerns was taken into custody Tuesday.    He had no comment coming in and out of court.    Kerns will have to post $100,000 cash to get out on bail.

News of Kerns' arrest came less than two weeks after he resigned as the chairman of Montgomery County's Republican Committee amid reports that an investigation was underway.

At the time, the executive director of the committee said in a statement the committee had   "no comment on media reports related to a possible criminal investigation of Mr. Kerns unrelated to his duties as chairman."

Kerns is a lawyer and a partner at Kerns, Pearlstine, Onorato and Hladi.

"Mr. Kerns vehemently denies these allegations.    He maintains his innocence.    We look forward to testing and defeating these accusations in the court of law and restoring his good name," Center City defense attorney Brian McMonagle said.

Sources said Kerns' last job as chairman of the Republican Committee was to call a special meeting for December 4th, when a new chairman will be selected.

Too many people we place in positions of trust are letting the public down.    It does not matter who the president is or was or which party they call home we need to clean these types out of positions of power and to enforce sentences for their actions that are strict enough to disuade others from getting out of line.   The trust of the public must be protected for our system to survive.

This list consists of American politicians convicted of crimes, either committed or prosecuted,  while holding office in the federal 
government.    It includes politicians who were convicted or pleaded guilty in a court of law, and does not include politicians involved in unprosecuted scandals  (which may or may not have been illegal in nature),  or politicians who have only been arrested or indicted.    The list also does not include crimes which occur outside the politician’s tenure unless they specifically stem from acts while they were in office.

Obama Years

Judicial Branch

Samuel B. Kent (R) The Federal District Judge of Galveston, Texas was sentenced on May 11, 2009, to 33 months in prison for having lied about sexually harassing two female employees.   He had been appointed to office by George H. W. Bush in 1990. 

Thomas Porteous (D) The Federal Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana was impeached, convicted and removed from office on December 8, 2010 on charges of bribery and lying to Congress.     He had been appointed to office by Bill Clinton in 1994. 

Legislative Branch

Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) was arrested on December 23rd, 2012 and later pleaded guilty to drinking and driving in a Virginia court.    The court fined him 250 dollars.     He was sentenced to 180 days in prison, but served no time.   Senator Mike Crapo was arrested for a DUI in the early morning of December 23 after being pulled over for running a red light.     His BAC was .110.    Mr. Crapo has publicly stated many times that he does not drink alcohol at all because his Mormon faith does not allow him to.

Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-IL) pleaded guilty on February 20, 2013 to one count of wire and mail fraud in connection with his misuse of $750,000 of campaign funds.    Jackson, Jr. agreed to plead guilty to charges of fraud, conspiracy, making false statements, mail fraud, wire fraud, and criminal forfeiture.    Jackson, Jr. used about $750,000 in campaign money for personal expenses that included a Michael Jackson fedora and cashmere capes.    Sentencing was scheduled for June 28, 2013.

Rick Renzi (R-AZ) on June 12th was found guilty of 17 of the 32 counts against him, including wire fraud, conspiracy, extortion, 
racketeering, money laundering and making false statements to insurance regulators.

Trey Radel (R-FL) was convicted of misdemeanor possession of cocaine in November, 2013.   As a first time offender, he was sentenced to one year probation and fined $250.   Radel announced he would take a leave of absence, but did not resign.

GW Bush Years

Executive branch

Lewis Libby (R) Chief of Staff to Vice President Dick Cheney (R).     'Scooter' was convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice in the 
Plame Affair on March 6, 2007 and was sentenced to 30 months in prison and fined $250,000.     His sentence was commuted by George W. Bush (R) on July 1, 2007.

Lester Crawford (R) Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, resigned after 2 months.    Pleaded guilty to conflict of interest and received 3 years suspended sentence and fined $90,000.

Claude Allen (R) Advisor to President Bush on Domestic Policy, Allen was arrested for a series of felony thefts in retail stores. (2006) He was convicted on one count and resigned soon after.

Legislative branch

Jack Abramoff CNMI scandal involves the efforts of Abramoff to influence Congressional action concerning U.S. immigration and minimum wage laws.    Congressmen convicted in the Abramoff scandal include:    Michael Scanlon (R) former staff to Tom DeLay: working for Abramoff, pleaded guilty to bribery.
Tony Rudy (R) former staff to Tom DeLay, pleaded guilty to conspiracy.

James W. Ellis (R) executive director of Americans for a Republican Majority (ARMPAC), pled guilty to making an illegal campaign contribution in a 2002 state legislative campaign.

John Colyandro (R) executive director of Texans for a Republican Majority (TRMPAC), pled guilty to accepting an illegal campaign 
contribution in a 2002 state legislative campaign.

Bob Ney (R-OH) pleaded guilty to conspiracy and making false statements as a result of his receiving trips from Abramoff in exchange for legislative favors.    Ney received 30 months in prison.

Duke Cunningham (R-CA) pleaded guilty on November 28, 2005 to charges of conspiracy to commit bribery, mail fraud, wire fraud and tax evasion in what came to be called the Cunningham scandal. Sentenced to over eight years in prison.

William J. Jefferson (D-LA) in August 2005 the FBI seized $90,000 in cash from Jefferson's home freezer.    He was re-elected anyway, but lost in 2008.    He was convicted of 11 counts of bribery and sentenced to 13 years in prison on November 13, 2009.    

Jefferson's Chief of Staff Brett Pfeffer, was sentenced to 84 months for bribery.  (2006) 

Bill Janklow (R-SD) convicted of second-degree manslaughter for running a stop sign and killing a motorcyclist.    Resigned from the House and given 100 days in the county jail and three years probation. (2003)

Jim Traficant (D-OH) found guilty on 10 felony counts of financial corruption was sentenced to 8 years in prison and expelled from the US House of Representatives. (2002) 

Vito Fossella (R-NY) US Congressman convicted of drunken driving in 2008, appealed the charge, but then pled guilty in 2009.

Larry Craig Senator (R-ID) – Married Senator and vocal critic of Clinton's affair, pled guilty to disorderly conduct in a Minneapolis 
airport men's room, after having been arrested on a charge of homosexual lewd conduct.   (2007) 

Frank Ballance (D-NC) admitted to federal charges of money laundering and mail fraud in October 2005 and was sentenced to 4 years in prison.

Clinton Years

Executive branch

Wade Sanders (D), Deputy Assistant United States Secretary of the Navy, for Reserve Affairs, was sentenced to 37 months in prison on one charge of possession of child pornography. (2009)

Legislative branch

Mel Reynolds (D-IL) was convicted on 12 counts of sexual assault, obstruction of justice and solicitation of child pornography. (1997) Was later convicted of 12 counts of bank fraud. (1999) 

Walter R. Tucker III (D-CA) was sentenced to 27 months in prison in 1996 for extortion and tax evasion. 

Wes Cooley (R-OR), Cooley was convicted of having lied on the 1994 voter information pamphlet about his service in the Army.    He was fined and sentenced to two years probation (1997)

Austin Murphy (D-PA) convicted of one count of voter fraud for filling out absentee ballots for members of a nursing home. (1999) 

House banking scandal 

 The House of Representatives Bank found that 450 members had overdrawn their checking accounts, but not been penalized.    Six were convicted of charges, most only tangentially related to the House Bank itself.    Twenty two more of the most prolific over-drafters were singled out by the House Ethics Committee. (1992)

Buz Lukens (R-Ohio) convicted of bribery and conspiracy.

Carl C. Perkins (D-Kentucky) pleaded guilty to a check kiting scheme involving several financial institutions (including the House Bank).

Carroll Hubbard (D-Kentucky) convicted of illegally funneling money to his wife's 1992 campaign to succeed him in congress.

Mary Rose Oakar (D-Ohio) pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor campaign finance charge not related to the House Bank.

Walter Fauntroy (D-District of Columbia) convicted of filing false disclosure forms in order to hide unauthorized income.

Congressional Post Office scandal (1991–1995) 

A conspiracy to embezzle House Post Office money through stamps and postal vouchers to congressmen.

Dan Rostenkowski (D-IL) Rostenkowski was convicted and sentenced to 18 months in prison, in 1995.

Joe Kolter (D-Pennsylvania) Convicted of one count of conspiracy  and sentenced to 6 months in prison.

Jay Kim (R-CA) accepted $250,000 in illegal 1992 campaign contributions and was sentenced to two months house arrest (1992) 


Mitch Fights Back, Several Years Later

All of those, supposedly centrist Republican groups who funded the Tea Party crazies because they were challenging Democratic senators and representatives in Town Hall meetings, when the Preisident was first elected, are now paying for their arrogance.   

They thought they could control the Tea Party, getting the base all upset about social issues just before an election and then ignoring them until the next election.  Oh!, how wrong they were.   The Tea Party is now ripping the GOP apart at the seams.

McConnell and the rest of the GOP are learning a big life lesson:  When you get into a relationship with angry, destructive people, they will turn on you and destroy you. 

Compare these two statements that demonstrate how far the GOP has strayed from sanity.    

The first is from the late actor John Wayne, who on JFK's 1960 election said,  "I didn't vote for him, but he's my president and I hope he does a good job."

The second is from talk radio host Rush Limbaugh, who on the inauguration of Barack Obama in 2009 said,  "I hope he fails."

The GOP is willing to punish America to defeat President Obama and Democrats.    Slice it any way you want, That's SICK.

Republican Campaign Committee Pushes Back Against Conservative Group

In a warning shot to outside conservative groups, the National Republican Senatorial Committee this week informed a prominent Republican advertising firm that it would not receive any contracts with the campaign committee because of its work with a group that targets incumbent Senate Republicans.

Even more striking, a senior official at the committee called individual Republican Senate campaigns and other party organizations this week and urged them not to hire the firm, Jamestown Associates, in an effort to punish them for working for the Senate Conservatives Fund, a group founded by Jim DeMint, then a South Carolina senator, that is trying to unseat Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican leader, and some other incumbents up for re-election next year whom it finds insufficiently conservative.

“We’re not going to do business with people who profit off of attacking Republicans,”  said Brad Dayspring, a spokesman for the committee. 

“Purity for profit is a disease that threatens the Republican Party.”

The committee has conveyed the same message, privately, to 2014 Senate candidates, the Republican National Committee, the National Republican Congressional Committee  (the senatorial committee’s House counterpart),  the Republican Governors Association and Mike DuHaime,  the chief strategist for Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, for whom Jamestown also does work.

Jamestown declined to respond to the attempt to curtail their business, deferring to the Senate Conservatives Fund, which criticized Mr. McConnell.

“This is happening because Mitch McConnell is having a complete meltdown,”   said Matt Hoskins, executive director of the conservative group. 

“He can’t defend his record so he’s threatening and attacking everyone who disagrees with him.    He’s so rattled, he has decided to declare war on the entire conservative movement, which represents the very people he needs to win re-election.    This isn’t the behavior of a confident person.    It’s the irrational reaction of a power-hungry bully who isn’t getting his way.”

Some of Jamestown’s conservative clients also moved to defend the firm.

“When some in Washington stepped away from our campaign, Jamestown stood with us and fought,”  said Representative Mark Sanford, Republican of South Carolina.    “I think their team is a good one and what a few in D.C. decide isn’t going to change that.”

The National Republican Senatorial Committee’s power play is part of a larger effort among establishment Republicans after the recent 
government shutdown to seize control of the party from insurgent forces who want to push Republicans toward a more hard-line posture and aggressive brand of conservatism.    The attempt to effectively blacklist the consulting firm illustrates the extent of the tensions between the establishment and the hard-liners.

Mr. McConnell’s allies in Washington’s lobbying community have been furious for weeks that Jamestown, which also does work for groups like the Republican Jewish Coalition, was on retainer with the Senate Conservatives Fund.

One prominent Republican lobbyist even printed out the records of a Louisville television station detailing the run times of every ad 
devised by Jamestown for the conservative group’s campaign against Mr. McConnell and gave it to a reporter.

“These are not the kind of people we would ever do business with,”  said Scott Reed, senior political strategist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

In the wake of the shutdown, Mr. McConnell and his top aides are also becoming more outspoken about wanting to effectively destroy the Senate Conservatives Fund.    The senator has told donors that he and other party leaders will take a much more aggressive approach in confronting such conservative groups.

And on Friday, one of Mr. McConnell’s closest aides offered a vivid metaphor about the leader’s determination.

“S.C.F. has been wandering around the country destroying the Republican Party like a drunk who tears up every bar they walk into,”   said Josh Holmes, Mr. McConnell’s chief of staff, now detailed to the National Republican Senatorial Committee through the election.    “The difference this cycle is that they strolled into Mitch McConnell’s bar and he doesn’t throw you out, he locks the door.”

Who ultimately wins?    The country will be better off if they both fade away.


Friday, November 22, 2013

Obstruction of Every Obama Appointment ENDS

ACV Democratic News Bottom Lines this Change for its readers.

This graph shows cloture votes in the U.S. Senate, meaning the number of times Senators moved to cut off a filibuster.   The giant spike at the end shows the period when Republicans lost the Senate and started filibustering almost every vote of any consequence.      When Democrats talk about never having seen anything like the current level of filibustering, this is what they mean.    Yes, filibustering is necessarily the last-ditch tool of the minority party, and Democrats have certainly used the filibuster – including to block President George W. Bush’s judicial nominations – but never on this scale.

Note to GOP: McCain/Palin Lost.

Note to GOP: Romney/Ryan Lost.

Obama and the Democrats won, both times.   Obama gets to choose the people to appoint.   When republicans win they make the appointments but they refuse to allow the President to do the same.   Republicans are spoiled children and need to grow up and act like adults.   I'm not talking the occasional blocking of a nominee.   I'm screaming the blocking of every nominee proposed by President Obama, even Republicans he tried to appoint.

The change corrects a pattern of unprecedented obstruction over the past 5 years by the Republican party.   Now Republicans threaten to punish the country when they return to power.    Really Republicans, What could you possibly do to gum up the workings of government more than you are doing now?   

You've shut the government down and openly hunger to do it again.    Your obstruction is not relegated to just one area, you block and obstruct everything.     You tried to kill the National Labor Relations Board because you hate unions and workers.    You tried to kill the EPA  because nobody should regulate the businesses that donate money to your future campaigns.

You are willing to let our hungry starve.   You don't care if disadvantaged youth go to school or receive an adequate education.   For you health care is a gift for the select few.   A woman for Republicans is a farm animal to be owned and controlled.   You happily destroy our countries credit rating.    Republicans have become the enemy within that seeks to destroy America.

  Republicans are blind to everything except destroying this black man the people elected to be President of the United States.   Twice by vote of the people Barack Obama has been elected President.

Here's a number to think about, 500.   That's the total number of filibusters by Republicans on all subjects since Obama took office.   

Republicans should be very ashamed of their conduct and the people who vote for republicans should wise up.    Your foolish votes are responsible for the  demise of our country.   500 Filibusters.   These people aren't politicians or leaders, they are terriorst.

WASHINGTON — In a historic move, Democrats in the Senate on Thursday voted to eliminate the use of the filibuster as a tool to block presidential appointments, upending a decades-old precedent that gave the minority party unique leverage on nominations.

After threatening to change the rules several times this year, the Democratic majority pulled the trigger on the so-called nuclear option after a series of procedural maneuvers that played out before a packed chamber.    It would allow a president’s nominees, except for seats on the Supreme Court, to be confirmed by a simple majority, rather than the 60-vote threshold that had become the norm.

Fifty-two senators voted in favor of the changes, with 48 voting in opposition.

Just three Democrats — red-state Sens. Mark Pryor of Arkansas and Joe Manchin III of West Virginia, as well as veteran Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan — opposed the move.


Joe Manchin sees the abuse and acknowledges the problem however he is unwilling to do anything to correct the situation.   Joe likes to spread his vote so thin that he can later claim to be for anything and claim to support everybody.   Joe Manchin simply lacks the courage to take a side on an issue, any issue.   Joe  "No Stand"  Manchin issued this release written by an unknown member of his staff.   Here is the Manchin Statement on Voting Against Change of Senate Filibuster Rules.

Date: Nov. 21, 2013
Location: Washington, DC

U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) issued the following statement on why he voted against changing Senate filibuster rules:

"All West Virginians and Americans deserve a government that works for them, and I completely understand their frustration with the partisan gridlock in Washington. It has become increasingly clear to me that both parties have abused the filibuster by using it to gain political advantage, instead of truly debating an issue. With this in mind, I offered a commonsense compromise that would have allowed the President to put his team in place, but required greater consideration for nominees whose posts outlasted the President.    I was willing to support modest changes to make the system more efficient, but my proposal was rejected.     I voted against the rules changes today because they simply went too far.    I firmly believe that the filibuster is a vital protection of the minority views and exactly why the Framers of our Constitution made the Senate the "cooling saucer.'    As the late, great Robert C. Byrd himself said in the months before his death,  "While I welcome needed reform, we must always be mindful of our responsibility to preserve this institution's special purpose.'

"It's past time to fix Congress and make the legislative process work in a way that puts the American people ahead of petty politics.    It's past time Congress begins working together to move this country forward."

Beautiful words Joe but nothing backing them up!

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) argued that the change was needed in the face of unprecedented Republican obstruction of nominees, which prevented the president from fulfilling his constitutional duty to fill vacancies in the courts, as well as in his administration.

More broadly, he argued that the Senate threatened to become “obsolete”  if it did not act to end gridlock.

“The gridlock has consequences,”  he said in opening the debate. “It’s not only bad for President Obama, bad for this body, the United States Senate, it’s bad for our country.”

Reid acknowledged that neither party’s hands were “clean” in the fight.   When Democrats were in the minority nearly two decades ago, they fiercely resisted a Republican attempt to make the same rule change Democrats implemented Thursday.

But times had changed, he argued.

“Can anyone say that the Senate is working now?”  he asked.  “I don't think so.”

In the short term, the Democrats’ action paves the way for the confirmation of Obama’s three pending appointments to the important D.C. Circuit court, beginning with Patricia Millett, whose nomination was the vehicle for Thursday’s action.    Democrats could also apply the rule change to other executive nominations that have been blocked, like Rep. Mel Watt (D-N.C.), Obama’s pick to lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

The long-term consequences are less clear.   The Democrats’ move amounts to a gamble that Republicans will not regain both the White House and control of the Senate by 2016.    If they did, the GOP would likely abide by the same new rules to confirm nominees opposed by Democrats.

Looming more immediately is a possible vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court that would occur during Obama’s final years in office.    Democrats’ decision to exempt high court appointments from the rules change might nonetheless give Republicans additional motivation to block whomever he chooses.




 Senate Democrats dropped the filibuster bomb Thursday, and now the question is what kind of fallout will result from the so-called nuclear option.

By a  52 - 48  vote, the Senate ended the ability of minority Republicans to continue using filibusters to block some of President Barack  Obama's  judicial and executive nominations, despite the vehement objections of Republicans.

Majority Democrats then quickly acted on the change by ending a filibuster against one of Obama's nominees for a federal appeals court.

Obama later cited what he called  "an unprecedented patter of obstruction in Congress"  during his presidency for the move led by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

"A deliberate and determined effort to obstruct everything, no matter what the merits, just to re-fight the results of an election is not normal,"   Obama said of the change.    "And for the sake of future generations, it cannot become normal."

Republicans warned the controversial move would worsen the already bitter partisan divide in Washington, complaining it took away a time-honored right for any member of the Senate minority party to filibuster.

"This changes everything, this changes everything," veteran GOP Sen. John McCain of Arizona told reporters.    He blamed newer Democratic senators who never served as the minority party for pushing the issue, adding:    "They succeeded and they will pay a very, very heavy price for it."

Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky called Thursday's maneuvering a diversion from the problem-plagued ACA issue that has been giving the White House and Democrats political headaches.    Odds are increasing that McConnell will not be re-elected.

"You'll regret this and you may regret it a lot sooner than you think,"   McConnell warned".

CNN chief political analyst Gloria Borger said Democrats seem to believe that things couldn't get much worse, with judicial vacancies 
increasing and Republicans increasing their use of filibusters after an agreement earlier this year that cleared some presidential 

"I think there is probably a little bit of  'calling your bluff'  going on here;   that Harry Reid basically threw up his hands and said, 
enough of this, it's time to do it,"  Borger said.    Now, she added, the question was whether angry Republicans would further harden their positions in the already bitter political climate which she said "will get worse."

Thursday's change affected presidential executive nominations such as ambassadors and agency heads, along with judicial nominations except for Supreme Court appointees.

It did not affect the ability of Republicans to filibuster legislation.

Under the old rules, it took 60 votes to break a filibuster of presidential nominees.    The change means a simple Senate majority of 51 now suffices in the chamber Democrats currently control with a 55-45 majority.

"It's time to get the Senate working again," the Nevada Democrat said on the Senate floor.    "Not for the good of the current Democratic majority or some future Republican majority, but for the good of the United States of America. It's time to change.    It's time to change the Senate before this institution becomes obsolete."

Reid followed through on threats dating back years after Republicans blocked three judicial nominees to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, known as the highest court in the land after the Supreme Court.

Veterans such as Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, who had been opposed to the nuclear option to change the Senate rules, recently decided to back Reid's move.    Feinstein and others, like fellow Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont, said things were so broken in Washington that the nuclear option was the only way to fix it.    Let's face it something has to be done to end this sick republican game.

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