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Friday Talking Points [349] -- Hillary Champions Universal Automatic Voter Registration

[ Posted Friday, June 5th, 2015 – 21:05 PDT ]

We really wanted to use a different subtitle for today's column, one we are actually astonished that more news organizations didn't go with, given Rick Perry's announcement of his second run for the White House. That headline, of course, would have been: "Oops, He Did It Again!" Now, we do realize that the Britney Spears album is actually 15 years old (how time flies, eh?), but even so, with "Oops" being so central to defining Perry on the national stage, it certainly seemed like an obvious choice.

Perhaps the more shallow folks in the media were too occupied by the Caitlyn Jenner photo and the continuing fallout over the Josh Duggar revelations -- both of which sucked an astonishing amount of oxygen from the entire media this week. This even spilled over into the political news, as conservative heads exploded over the support Jenner received, while Mike Huckabee quietly scrubbed all Duggar endorsements from his campaign website.

In more serious news, a big N.S.A. surveillance program was finally reformed, after Rand Paul essentially made a fool of Mitch McConnell at the beginning of the week. I wrote about this whole fiasco earlier in the week, detailing the depths of McConnell's incompetence. Rand Paul certainly seemed to be having fun running circles around McConnell, and last week even released the funniest campaign ad we've yet seen in the 2016 cycle, a spoof of pro wrestling ads that really should have tipped McConnell off before he let the deadline on the N.S.A. program expire. So now we've got one portion of the USA PATRIOT Act reformed by the USA FREEDOM Act, proving something about silly acronyms in Congress (but we're not exactly sure what). And for anyone who is unaware, none of this would have happened without the revelations by Edward Snowden -- which even people on Capitol Hill are now (begrudgingly) admitting.

A few odds and ends are worth mentioning, in no particular order. The Washington Post has an article up with two excellent charts showing how pronounced the extremism has gotten in the Republicans in Congress (also showing how this is in no way "balanced" by Democrats getting more extreme, which just hasn't happened at anywhere near the same rate). They've also got another interesting chart showing how when you move from the richest one percent into the richest 0.1 or 0.01 percent, your tax rates actually go down.

June is, of course, the big month for Supreme Court decisions, and Evan Bernick over at the Huffington Post has a good overview of the five most important cases to be decided in the next few weeks. Well worth a read for SCOTUS wonks.

Republicans in the Senate showed once again their disdain for the troops by voting down military benefits for gay spouses who happen to live in states that don't yet recognize their marriage as being valid -- even if said marriage happened in jurisdictions where it is legal. Nothing like supporting the troops, guys!

There was a flurry of marijuana political news this week, starting with Texas becoming the latest state to legalize cannabis oil (low in THC) for treating severe medical conditions (seizures, especially). Texas becomes the 15th state to legalize the oil, in addition to the 23 states which have legalized medical marijuana itself. This adds up to 38 states, which is over three-quarters of all the United States. And yet the federal government still maintains there is no "accepted" medical use for marijuana -- a position that is becoming downright farcical in the face of all the evidence to the contrary.

Some are working to change the attitude of the federal government, including more and more members of Congress. Last year, a bill was signed into law which protected people in states with medical marijuana from federal legal interference, from both the Drug Enforcement Agency and the Justice Department as a whole. This year, the same amendment was just passed by the House on a vote of 242-186. Another amendment protecting people in states with legal medical marijuana oils passed 297-130. And a third protecting state-legal hemp farming passed 282-146. The only measure which didn't pass was one protecting the people in the four states which have legalized recreational marijuana for adults, but it didn't fail by much (the vote was 206-222). On top of all these measures, the House also strongly expressed its disapproval of the way the D.E.A. has been targeting marijuana by stripping millions of dollars from its budget and redirecting it to community outreach programs, victim aid programs, fighting police abuse, paying for body cameras for cops, increase funding for rape testing kits, and ending N.S.A.-style bulk data collection by the agency.

This, it should be pointed out, is not just a bunch of crazy hippies making noise in the streets. This is the Republican-led House of Representatives sending a very strong message that the federal government's priorities on marijuana enforcement are drastically out of whack. Raiding the D.E.A. budget is a particularly harsh signal that the time for change has come when it comes to the almost century-long "War On Weed."

Of course, these members of Congress would never have gotten to this point if it hadn't been for a whole bunch of marijuana activists using creative ways to make their case. Which brings us to the final nugget of marijuana news. The Internal Revenue Service -- in record time -- has now given tax-exempt status to Indiana's "First Church of Cannabis." The organization was created to test the boundaries of the new religious freedom law in Indiana, obviously, but the founder was stunned at how quickly the I.R.S. made up their minds. He points out that churches are free to serve alcohol to underage worshippers, so there is legal precedent for treating cannabis as a sacrament. The First Church of Cannabis will hold their first public services on the first of July, when the new Indiana state religious freedom law goes into effect. We'll be keeping an eye on the inevitable legal battle to follow, that's for sure.

Of course, we have to close on a sad note this week, as we mark the passing of Beau Biden, the son of the vice president. Beau was obviously on track to an impressive political career and at the very least would have wound up representing Delaware in the Senate in the future. But this was not to be, as his life was cut way too short by brain cancer. Our thoughts are with the Biden family as we mourn the passing of Beau Biden. Requiescat In Pace.

 

Most Impressive Democrat of the Week

Before we begin, we have to hand out an Honorable Mention to Hillary Clinton, for reasons we will explain down in the talking points portion of the program.

There were two interesting pieces of news about congressional war authorization this week. Some House members are disgusted with the fact that Congress has done absolutely nothing for almost a year, while America has sent troops to the war against the Islamic State. This inaction has become the poster child for why consulting Congress about matters of war is an absolute exercise in futility. Congress refuses to act, one way or another, even given an entire year. That's nothing short of pathetic.

The first action was a non-binding one, a mere legislative suggestion that maybe, perhaps, "Congress has a constitutional duty to debate and determine whether or not to authorize the use of military force." It wouldn't mean anything other than Congress going on the record stating that they should really be living up to their constitutional duties -- it wouldn't force a vote, it wouldn't force debate, just an acknowledgement of how utterly they've dropped the ball so far.

Every Democrat behind this effort deserves at least an Honorable Mention. Even this may fail to pass, which is yet another measure of how pathetic this particular Congress is when it comes to addressing questions of war.

But this news was overshadowed by a much stronger motion from Democratic Representatives Jim McGovern and Barbara Lee (and, to be fair, Republican Walter Jones), which would actually force Congress to take a vote under the War Powers Resolution. The vote would be on whether to pull out all U.S. forces from the Islamic State fight within 30 days, as mandated by the War Powers Resolution. Although it would be a vote to entirely shut down the war, it would also launch the larger debate (that Congress has been shamefully avoiding) over the aims of the war itself.

Jones, the Republican sponsor of the measure (which would not even require the president's signature), baldly stated how badly Congress is shirking their duty when it comes to approving war: "If this House doesn't have the stomach to carry out its constitutional duty to debate and authorize this latest war, then we should bring our troops home.... Be for it or against it, but have the debate. It is our responsibility, not the president's responsibility, to initiate these [war authorizations]."

He's right. So while we do applaud Jones, we're not in the business of handing out awards to Republicans. Instead, we gladly bestow the Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week on Representatives Jim McGovern and Barbara Lee for sponsoring what should really have been an unnecessary motion. Congress should have a say in American warmaking. Congress, at times, even demands a say in whether we send soldiers off to war or not. But when Congress utterly abdicates its constitutional role, it is certainly worth trying to force them to do their job. And we have to salute any effort to make them do so, especially one with teeth.

[Congratulate Representative Jim McGovern on his House contact page, and Representative Barbara Lee on her House contact page, to let them know you appreciate their efforts.]

 

Most Disappointing Democrat of the Week

This week, one advocacy group faced reality. Another one did not.

The "Run Warren Run" group, formed to spend over a million dollars in an effort to convince Senator Elizabeth Warren to run for president, announced it is shutting down. Because, obviously, Warren is just not going to run this time around.

This has really been obvious for months now, it bears mentioning. Warren, for whatever her personal reasons, has been unbending in her rejection of the possibility of such a run in 2016. Every time she was asked, she loudly and unequivocally said: "No, I will not run."

Finally, this week, some of her most fervent supporters took her at her own word. And most of them moved on to perhaps expend their efforts where it might do some tangible good (some of the staff have already moved over to the Bernie Sanders campaign).

But Run Warren Run wasn't the only group trying to convince Senator Warren to jump in the race. The "Ready For Warren" group isn't throwing in the towel quite yet.

This is disappointing, mostly because it will expend precious progressive resources on a lost cause. Ready For Warren is still going to continue tilting at one particular windmill when they could be fighting a real fight elsewhere.

Now, we're not saying that Elizabeth Warren isn't a force for good and a champion of Main Street over Wall Street. She surely is all of that. But she is not going to run for president this time around. The sooner the diehards realize this, the better. Warren can still be just as much of a strong voice for her values as a senator, and can still influence the Democratic Party and the Democratic nomination process.

But to deny the reality that she's not running any further is not just disappointing, it's becoming downright embarrassing. So this week's Most Disappointing Democrats Of The Week award goes to none other than the Ready For Warren organization.

[Contact Ready For Warren via their web page, to let them know what you think of their actions.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 349 (6/5/15)

Hillary Clinton made some news this week, when she gave a speech which tossed a very large gauntlet down in front of the entire Republican presidential field. She strongly spoke up for voting rights, and for making the process of voting easier and more fair. In doing so, she directly attacked some of her Republican opponents by name, for actions they had taken in their own states.

This is a brilliant issue for any Democrat to campaign upon, because it strikes most Americans as one of fairness. And fairness is, unsurprisingly, quite popular with the public.

Hillary largely avoids getting tangled up in the debate over photo IDs, which the Republicans at least have an argument on ("It takes a photo ID to open a bank account or fly on a plane, why wouldn't we require one for voting?"), and instead directly targets all the other restrictions they've been passing in the shadows of the photo ID debate. These actions are, for the most part, simply indefensible.

What argument can realistically be made against making voting easier? Early voting days, evening voting, weekend voting -- how can anyone be against these things? Then in the middle of the speech (the full transcript of the speech can be found on Clinton's campaign site), Hillary proposes an ambitious plan to make voter registration not only painless but automatic.

Democrats have been either playing defense or shying away from this issue for too long. They need to take it on directly, and offer proposals for making things better. Hillary Clinton does so, and shows real leadership for other Democrats who could also be making this argument.

This week's talking points are all excerpts from Hillary Clinton's speech. I should point out that this is the first time we're doing this in the 2016 campaign season, but it definitely won't be the last, as we review all the Democratic candidates' major speeches.

 

1
   A sweeping effort to disempower and disenfranchise people

Hillary Clinton starts by drawing a clear contrast between the two parties. Democrats fight for voter rights, Republicans are fighting to make voting harder.

We have a responsibility to say clearly and directly what's really going on in our country -- because what is happening is a sweeping effort to disempower and disenfranchise people of color, poor people, and young people from one end of our country to the other.

Because since the Supreme Court eviscerated a key provision of the Voting Rights Act in 2013, many of the states that previously faced special scrutiny because of a history of racial discrimination have proposed and passed new laws that make it harder than ever to vote.

North Carolina passed a bill that went after pretty much anything that makes voting more convenient or more accessible. Early voting. Same-day registration. The ability of county election officials to even extend voting hours to accommodate long lines.

Now what possible reason could there be to end pre-registration for 16- and 17-year-olds and eliminate voter outreach in high schools?

We should be doing everything we can to get our young people more engaged in democracy, not less.

 

2
   A valid student ID isn't good enough?

This is an excellent thing to point out, because it shows the ridiculous lengths Republicans will go to make it easier for their own voters and harder for Democratic voters.

We need look no further than right here in Texas. You all know this far better than I, but if you want to vote in this state, you can use a concealed weapon permit as a valid form of identification -- but a valid student ID isn't good enough?

 

3
   Does not happen by accident

Who waits in line to vote? Well, poor people and other Democratic groups, for the most part. Who doesn't? Rich folks and other Republican-leaning groups. As Clinton points out, this does not happen by accident.

It's not a surprise for you to hear that studies and everyday experiences confirm that minority voters are more likely than white voters to wait in long lines at the polls. They are also far more likely to vote in polling places with insufficient numbers of voting machines.

In South Carolina, for example, there's supposed to be one machine for every 250 voters. But in minority areas, that rule is just often overlooked. In Richland Country, nearly 90 percent of the precincts failed to meet the standard required by law in 2012. Instead of 250 voters per machine, in one precinct it was more than 430 voters per machine. Not surprisingly, people trying to cast a ballot there faced massive delays.

Now there are many fair-minded, well-intentioned election officials and state legislators all over this country. But this kind of disparity that I just mentioned does not happen by accident.

 

4
   What part of democracy are they afraid of?

Clinton is unafraid to name names here, which is an excellent thing to see in a presidential candidate. And that "what are they afraid of" line is an excellent talking point, all on its own.

This is the greatest, longest-lasting democracy in the history of the world. We should be clearing the way for more people to vote, not putting up every roadblock anyone can imagine.

Yet unfortunately today, there are people who offer themselves to be leaders whose actions have undercut this fundamental American principle.

Here in Texas, former Governor Rick Perry signed a law that a federal court said was actually written with the purpose of discriminating against minority voters. He applauded when the Voting Rights Act was gutted, and said the lost protections were "outdated and unnecessary."

But Governor Perry is hardly alone in his crusade against voting rights.

In Wisconsin, Governor Scott Walker cut back early voting and signed legislation that would make it harder for college students to vote.

In New Jersey, Governor Christie vetoed legislation to extend early voting.

And in Florida, when Jeb Bush was governor, state authorities conducted a deeply flawed purge of voters before the presidential election in 2000.

Thankfully in 2004 a plan to purge even more voters was headed off.

So today, Republicans are systematically and deliberately trying to stop millions of American citizens from voting. What part of democracy are they afraid of?

I believe every citizen has the right to vote. And I believe we should do everything we can to make it easier for every citizen to vote.

I call on Republicans at all levels of government with all manner of ambition to stop fear-mongering about a phantom epidemic of election fraud and start explaining why they're so scared of letting citizens have their say.

Yes, this is about democracy. But it's also about dignity. About the ability to stand up and say, yes, I am a citizen. I am an American. My voice counts. And no matter where you come from or what you look like or how much money you have, that means something. In fact, it means a lot.

 

5
   Let's get this done

Clinton lays out her three-point plan to fix things.

First, Congress should move quickly to pass legislation to repair that damage and restore the full protections that American voters need and deserve.

. . .

Second, we should implement the recommendations of the bipartisan presidential commission to improve voting. That commission was chaired by President Obama's campaign lawyer and by Governor Mitt Romney campaign's lawyer. And they actually agreed. And they set forth common sense reforms, including expanding early, absentee, and mail voting. Providing online voter registration. Establishing the principle that no one should ever have to wait more than 30 minutes to cast your vote.

Third, we should set a standard across our country of at least 20 days of early in-person voting everywhere -- including opportunities for weekend and evening voting. If families coming out of church on Sunday before an election are inspired to go vote, they should be free to do just that. And we know that early in-person voting will reduce those long lines and give more citizens the chance to participate, especially those who have work or family obligations that make it difficult to get to the polls on Election Day.

It's not just convenient -- it's also more secure, more reliable, and more affordable than absentee voting. So let’s get this done.

 

6
   Universal, automatic voter registration

Then she busts out how much further she'll go, with a new idea that pretty much everyone can get behind -- make voter registration automatic. Modernize our system. Who could be against such a simple and beneficial idea?

And I believe we should go even further to strengthen voting rights in America. So today I am calling for universal, automatic voter registration. Every citizen, every state in the Union. Everyone, every young man or young woman should be automatically registered to vote when they turn 18 -- unless they actively choose to opt out. But I believe this would have a profound impact on our elections and our democracy. Between a quarter and a third of all eligible Americans remain unregistered and therefore unable to vote.

And we should modernize our entire approach to registration. The current system is a relic from an earlier age. It relies on a blizzard of paper records and it's full of errors.

We can do better. We can make sure that registration rolls are secure, up to date, and complete. When you move, your registration should move with you. If you are an eligible vote and want to be registered, you should be a registered voter -- period.

 

7
   Nearly a century ago

Hillary is likely going to bring this up again in the campaign. A century ago, she not only would not have been able to run for president, she would not have even been able to vote. We've certainly come a long way in the past century, so why would we ever want to reverse course and make voting harder?

As Barbara Jordan famously reminded us, when the Constitution was first written, it left most of us here out. But generations of Americans fought and marched and organized and prayed to expand the circle of freedom and opportunity. They never gave up and never backed down.

And nearly a century ago on this very day, after years of struggle, Congress finally passed the 19th Amendment to give women the right to vote in the United States.

So that is, that is the story of progress, courageous men and women, expanding rights, not restricting them. And today we refuse, we refuse to allow our country or this generation of leaders to slow or reverse America's long march toward a more perfect union.

We owe it to our children and grandchildren to fight just as hard as those who came before us did. To march just as far. To organize just as well. To speak out just as loudly. And to vote, every chance we get for the kind of future we want.

-- Chris Weigant

 

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124 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [349] -- Hillary Champions Universal Automatic Voter Registration”

  1. [1] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    To all -

    My apologies for posting so late today. I had to pick the wife up from a business trip, so I didn't even come close to my normal deadline. Oh, well, hope it reads as good as "Saturday Morning Talking Points," I guess.

    Also, I was so rushed, I did not cross-post the column this week anywhere else, so readers here have exclusive access to it this week.

    Enjoy!

    -CW

  2. [2] 
    Michale wrote:

    They've also got another interesting chart showing how when you move from the richest one percent into the richest 0.1 or 0.01 percent, your tax rates actually go down.

    Yea, just ask Hillary Clinton. She is in that .01 percent..

    THAT's ya'all's "champion"??

    Before we begin, we have to hand out an Honorable Mention to Hillary Clinton, for reasons we will explain down in the talking points portion of the program.

    You mean, that 0.01 Percenter?? :D

    We need look no further than right here in Texas. You all know this far better than I, but if you want to vote in this state, you can use a concealed weapon permit as a valid form of identification -- but a valid student ID isn't good enough?

    The question is, IS it a "VALID" student ID...

    The thing about IDs is that they are only as "valid" as the issuing authority...

    Why not a Moose Lodge ID??

    Why not a Library Card??

    Why not a Blockbuster Card??

    Because those are simply NOT "valid" forms that guarantee positive identification..

    A CCW ID *IS* a "valid" ID because it is issued by the state. It verifies ID as much as a Drivers License, ALSO a State ID...

    THAT is why a student ID is not a valid ID for voting...

    Because it doesn't actually VERIFY anything..

    Michale

  3. [3] 
    Michale wrote:

    and the continuing fallout over the Josh Duggar revelations

    This is exactly why it's impossible to take ANYTHING the Left says seriously vis a vis "scandals"...

    For the Left, a little boy in the throes of puberty touching his toddler sisters in inappropriate places THRU clothing AND covers is a "scandal"...

    But our ambassador and other being brutally murdered due to incompetence AND the ensuing cover up???

    Not a scandal at all..

    Obama using his IRS to target conservative groups to win an election???

    "Faux Scandal"...

    Political ideologues must have their logic centers removed from their brains as the price of membership... :^/

    Michale

  4. [4] 
    Michale wrote:

    Also, I was so rushed, I did not cross-post the column this week anywhere else, so readers here have exclusive access to it this week.

    Oooooo!! All to ourselves!!!

    I may swoon!! :D

    Michale

  5. [5] 
    Pastafarian Dan wrote:

    I just want to make 2 points.
    1- I agree that Elizabeth Warren is a stronger force for progressive values in the Senate and the job I want her to end up with is Harry Reid's old (and Mitch McConnell's current) job.
    2- Regarding GOP voting laws. It just goes to show that the GOP can only win elections through radical gerrymandering and voter suppression. Because, contrary to the mainstream media, America is not a "center-right" nation.

  6. [6] 
    Michale wrote:

    2- Regarding GOP voting laws. It just goes to show that the GOP can only win elections through radical gerrymandering and voter suppression.

    And Democrats can only win elections by minting millions of fresh new Democrat voters from illegal immigrant criminals..

    Because, contrary to the mainstream media, America is not a "center-right" nation.

    Despite ALL the facts and evidence to the contrary... :D

    Shall we revisit this discussion Wed, 9 Nov 2016??? :D

    Michale

  7. [7] 
    Michale wrote:

    Perhaps the more shallow folks in the media were too occupied by the Caitlyn Jenner photo

    According to the Left, if you accept Bruce Jenner's right to make his own perverse and whacked out choice but don't ACCEPT and APPROVE of Bruce Jenner's perverse and whacked out choice, you are a homophobic bigot and all around bad person.....

    So.... Along that same reasoning...

    If you accept and approve of US Troops but don't accept and approve of the wars they fight in, then that makes you an unpatriotic American...

    Right???

    Cue cries of, "IT'S NOT THE SAME THING!!!" :D

    Michale

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    It just goes to show that the GOP can only win elections through radical gerrymandering and voter suppression.

    Yea?? Explain Maryland and Chicago Governor races...

    It's funny...

    Democrats ALWAYS win on their merits...

    Republicans only win thru dirty tricks...

    Why can't you just admit it to yourself and accept the fact that the people choose Republicans over Democrats...

    "There are none so blind as those who will not see..."

    Democrats lost because their idea of governing sucks....

    Get over it...

    Michale

  9. [9] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    I really enjoyed watching Marco Rubio mansplaining his Iraq policy to those four bare-legged dingbats on Fox Noise. I think he deserves an award.

    "Well, it's not nation-building. We are assisting them in building their nation."

    Rant Paul should be able to work with that video. He can contrast his isolationism with Rubio's "assisting" while simultaneously highlighting their shared condescension to Fox Babes and real female journalists. It could even the playing field.

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    He can contrast his isolationism with Rubio's "assisting" while simultaneously highlighting their shared condescension to Fox Babes and real female journalists.

    You mean like Sharyl Attkisson???

    Sharyl Attkisson: If You Cross Obama Admin They Will Treat You Like "Enemies Of The State"
    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2015/01/29/sharyl_attkisson_if_you_cross_obama_admin_they_will_treat_you_like_enemies_of_the_state.html

    Or is your definition of "real" female journalist one who kisses Obama's ass on a daily basis??

    Just curious.... :D

    Michale

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    As promised, here are my predictions for the SCOTUS verdicts..

    Obamacare will lose.. It will be 5-4 against the Administration... The wording of the law is clear. The intent has also been well-established by Jonathan Gruber..

    The ONLY way that the TrainWreckCare subsidies survive is is the Justices ignore the law and follow the dictates of Too-Big-To-Fail... It's possible, but I doubt it...

    Gay Marriage will lose. Justices will rule 7-2 (or maybe 6-3) against changing the definition of marriage that has been with us for thousands of years. This prediction is based on statements made by various justices over the past year or so...

    Anyone else want to go on the record?? :D

    Michale

  12. [12] 
    Paula wrote:

    I've said before I'm thrilled Hillary is being proactive on voting suppression -- it shows an awareness of real, practical issues that need to be addressed, and isn't trying to be polite about repub efforts to cheat their way to victories. Good on her!

    To every repub who wants to attempt the "Democrats just want to get hispanics to vote" or however they frame it, I say "if you have to cheat your way to winning, you're a cheater, not a winner."

    I love the idea of Elizabeth Warren replacing Harry Reid. Go Elizabeth!

    Meanwhile, Go Bernie! Love him too!

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    Political ideologues must have their logic centers removed from their brains as the price of membership... :^/

    Case in point.

    The latest "scandal" to come from the GOP as told by the Democrat Party....

    Rubio's wife has received 14 traffic citations in the last 17 years...

    OH MY GOD, WHAT A F*CKING NIGHTMARE!!"
    -Marisa Tormeii, MY COUSIN VINNY

    That surely disqualifies Marco Rubio for POTUS, eh?? :^/

    Michale

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    To every repub who wants to attempt the "Democrats just want to get hispanics to vote" or however they frame it, I say "if you have to cheat your way to winning, you're a cheater, not a winner."

    Exactly..

    So, explain the thousands of illegal immigrant criminals that were on the voter rolls in 2014??

    There is only one explanation..

    Cheating...

    Michale

  15. [15] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "Anyone else want to go on the record?? :D"

    I'll go on the record.

    Gay marriage will win. The Justices will vote 7-2 in favor.

    Obamacare will also win. The vote will be 6-3 in favor.

  16. [16] 
    John M wrote:

    Oh, I almost forgot to include the reasoning.

    Gay marriage will win based on both the 14th amend. and on the Full Faith and Credit Clause. But the majority of judges in favor will not be the same in both cases. Also, at least one or possibly two justices will cite gender rather than sexual orientation as the reason for joining the majority based on the 14th amendment.

    As for Obamacare, the Justices will heavily cite precedence on legislative intent and what Congress meant, rather than the actual wording of one sentence. They will say that in using the word "state" that Congress clearly meant government in general, or something like that, based on what was written elsewhere.

  17. [17] 
    John M wrote:

    Also, just in case you missed it Michale:

    Michale wrote:

    "You don't think that a Liberal group could have the word Patriot as part of their organization's name too???

    Find me one.. :D"

    Ok Michale. I'll bite. How about this? :

    Patriot Majority USA is a liberal, labor union-backed nonprofit.

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    Patriot Majority USA is a liberal, labor union-backed nonprofit.

    And do you have any information about their application to the IRS for non-profit status???

    Michale

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    Gay marriage will win based on both the 14th amend. and on the Full Faith and Credit Clause. But the majority of judges in favor will not be the same in both cases. Also, at least one or possibly two justices will cite gender rather than sexual orientation as the reason for joining the majority based on the 14th amendment.

    Doesn't take into account the quote from Ginsberg who said she regreted her Roe v Wade vote because it stopped the public debate...

    As for Obamacare, the Justices will heavily cite precedence on legislative intent and what Congress meant, rather than the actual wording of one sentence. They will say that in using the word "state" that Congress clearly meant government in general, or something like that, based on what was written elsewhere.

    Intent was established by Jonathan Gruber who was intimately involved when TrainWreckCare was being written..

    He stated unequivocally that the subsidies would be withheld from states who did not set up exchanges as a way to FORCE states to set up exchanges..

    If you bank on intent, you will lose because intent is well established..

    The ONLY hope that TrainWreckCare has is the TOO-BIG-TO-FAIL argument..

    Michale

  20. [20] 
    Michale wrote:

    Doesn't take into account the quote from Ginsberg who said she regreted her Roe v Wade vote because it stopped the public debate..

    You also don't take into account Justice Kennedy's statement of changing the definition of marriage as a man and a woman that has been with us for thousands of years..

    Once again, ignoring inconvenient facts...

    Michale

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    JM,

    I'll go on the record.

    It's heartening to see someone publicly state their case and stand by it..

    Credit where credit is due...

    Michale

  22. [22] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "And do you have any information about their application to the IRS for non-profit status???"

    No I don't. But Emerge America, which supports Democratic Women running for office, was denied tax exempt status by the IRS under Obama.

  23. [23] 
    Michale wrote:

    No I don't. But Emerge America, which supports Democratic Women running for office, was denied tax exempt status by the IRS under Obama.

    Cite...

    Michale

  24. [24] 
    Michale wrote:

    JM,

    What's your thoughts on the TPA, the TPP and the TiSA???

    Michale

  25. [25] 
    Michale wrote:

    No I don't. But Emerge America, which supports Democratic Women running for office, was denied tax exempt status by the IRS under Obama.

    It's my understanding that, for tax exempt status, an organization has to support ISSUES that are for the public good..

    Emerge America, as you describe it, supports CANDIDATES, which would explain the denial..

    That has nothing to do with why the IRS denied conservative groups...

    Michale

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    This is the problem facing Democrats for the next 18 months or so..

    Bill Clinton's words were a reminder that perhaps no other former president has lavished so much travel and star power on such an ambitious engine of good deeds. The foundation is an exemplar.

    Until you peek inside and behold a convoluted braid of public service and personal aggrandizement, a queasy-making brew of altruism and vanity, a mechanism for employing loyalists and rewarding friends, a bazaar for favor trading. Straightforward admiration is no longer possible.

    Frustration supplants it. Worry, too. A few days ago I spoke with one Democratic elder who ranted, like my breakfast companion, about all the ammunition that the Clintons had needlessly created for a Republican nominee.

    He envisioned a flood of negative ads in Florida and Ohio about State Department emails, speaking fees and foreign donations. He said that this deluge could very well make a difference.

    He was livid.

    Would that keep him from campaigning for Hillary?

    No, he said. Even if he couldn’t count on her, she could count on him.

    It didn’t seem fair.

    It did seem familiar.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/07/opinion/sunday/frank-bruni-hillary-the-tormentor.html?ref=opinion

    Michale

  27. [27] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "That has nothing to do with why the IRS denied conservative groups..."

    Except Michale, there were NO Conservative groups that were denied. All the Tea Party and Patriot groups came under delayed and more heavy inquiry by the IRS. But not one of them that I know of was actually, in the end, ever denied tax exempt status. That they were is a right wing myth.

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    Except Michale, there were NO Conservative groups that were denied.

    I have already proven that wrong when CW made that point..

    All the Tea Party and Patriot groups came under delayed and more heavy inquiry by the IRS. But not one of them that I know of was actually, in the end, ever denied tax exempt status. That they were is a right wing myth.

    No, it's documented fact.. Some conservative groups are STILL waiting for tax-exempt status...

    Michale

  29. [29] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote"

    "No I don't. But Emerge America, which supports Democratic Women running for office, was denied tax exempt status by the IRS under Obama.

    Cite..."

    Here is one link for you. I am sure there are others.

    http://www.salon.com/2013/05/15/meet_the_group_the_irs_actually_revoked_democrats/

  30. [30] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "No, it's documented fact.. Some conservative groups are STILL waiting for tax-exempt status..."

    Still waiting, and actually being denied, are two separate things. That's like saying that a candidate waiting on being confirmed by the Senate, is the same as the Senate actually voting against that candidate.

  31. [31] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "JM,

    What's your thoughts on the TPA, the TPP and the TiSA???"

    In principle, in general, I am in favor of free trade agreements. I think the lesson of the Depression, of the 1930's, when we went in the opposite direction, is that being against free trade makes things worse, not better. Having said that, I am wary of any agreements that I cannot see the content of or that are kept secret.

  32. [32] 
    akadjian wrote:

    This is a great idea. Thank you for writing about this, CW, and also for the nice charts from WaPo.

    I wrote about this before and suggested that we shouldn't be opposed to voter IDs, but rather we should be opposed to Republican-issued IDs.

    Love seeing that Hillary took this up a notch to use it as an opportunity to register more voters (queue Republicans running for the exits!)

    -David

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    In principle, in general, I am in favor of free trade agreements. I think the lesson of the Depression, of the 1930's, when we went in the opposite direction, is that being against free trade makes things worse, not better. Having said that, I am wary of any agreements that I cannot see the content of or that are kept secret.

    So, you don't support Obama in the pursuit of the TPP....

    "Scariest environment imaginable. That's all you had to say. Scariest environment imaginable.."
    -Oscar, ARMAGEDDON

    :D

    David,

    I wrote about this before and suggested that we shouldn't be opposed to voter IDs, but rather we should be opposed to Republican-issued IDs.

    So, yer good with a Blockbuster ID for voting?? :D

    What's the entire idea behind IDs?? To verify identity...

    Michale

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    Still waiting, and actually being denied, are two separate things.

    Not really...

    Consider if you are looking for approval for a project.. If your boss keeps putting you off and putting you off and putting you off, it's obvious he is not interested in the project..

    Excessive wait time is a de facto denial..

    Michale

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    Still waiting, and actually being denied, are two separate things.

    Tell ya what...

    Let's make Democrat voters wait and wait and wait and wait and jump thru tons more hoops than Republican voters...

    Ya'all would be perfectly OK with that, right?? :D

    Michale

  36. [36] 
    Michale wrote:

    Here is one link for you. I am sure there are others.

    http://www.salon.com/2013/05/15/meet_the_group_the_irs_actually_rev

    Salon is as reliable a cite as FoxNews...

    If I can't cite Fox, you can't cite Salon. :D

    Michale

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    Just kidding.. :D

    I couldn't find any info on IRS denial at that link...

    Michale

  38. [38] 
    Michale wrote:

    Let's make Democrat voters wait and wait and wait and wait and jump thru tons more hoops than Republican voters...

    Actually, that's a great idea..

    In the voting station, there is on kiosk for Democrat voters and 50 kiosks for GOP voters, thereby generating a humongously long line for Democrats...

    While in the line, Democrats will have to answer dozens of questions regarding their voting and the reasons behind the vote.. They will have to fill out numerous forms before they are allowed to vote...

    Republican voters will have a very short line, a very short wait time and no questions to answer or forms to fill out...

    No one here has a problem with that, right??? I mean, that's an exact analogy of what conservative groups faced with the IRS....

    So, no one here could POSSIBLY have a problem with that..

    Right?? :D

    The Sword Of Damocles *can* cut both ways.... :D

    Michale

  39. [39] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    There is one thing you should always remember when it comes to predicting what the Roberts court will do ... he doesn't wish himself or his court to be judged as a complete idiot bunch of idiots.

    That is why the Obamacare and marriage equality decisions will not be the ones you are looking for.

  40. [40] 
    dsws wrote:

    June is, of course, the big month for Supreme Court decisions, and Evan Bernick over at the Huffington Post has a good overview of the five most important cases to be decided in the next few weeks.

    1. King v. Burwell

    It's not clear to me what's at stake in this case. People implementing a law always have to interpret it. The significance of a law is often not entirely straightforward. Hopefully, it's just that if the IRS screwed up in its interpretation of the statute, the Court will fix it. That's part of what courts do. But if there were nothing more than that at stake, wouldn't it have been handled by a lower court? As I say, not clear to me.

    2. Horne v. Department of Agriculture

    The "takings movement" is generally a crock. The idea is that whenever any regulation of commerce has any adverse effect on anyone, that's a "taking"; and it's impossible to regulate commerce without having some adverse effect on someone; therefore the fifth amendment entirely repeals the commerce clause.

    Breyer has an interesting angle on this one in the oral arguments (near the bottom on this page, at 13:04.) He says that the program benefits raisin growers, so if it's considered a taking for which compensation is due, the relevant compensation would be the difference between what the grower would get with and without the program.

    But I don't think the fifth amendment is supposed to repeal the commerce clause to begin with. Any regulation is inevitably going to affect lots of people, with some being better off and some worse off -- and crucially, it will be impossible to perfectly model every transaction in the hypothetical course of economy without the regulation, so there will always be some people uncompensated.

    It's an exception to a prohibition: the regulation says you can't sell raisins, unless you do various things. One option is to hand over some raisins to the government. Growers could reasonably be expected to know this when they decided to grow the raisins. As long as the program as a whole is a reasonable regulation of commerce, and the requirement to hand over some raisins has a rational connection to the goals of the program, I say it's not a taking in the sense of the fifth amendment.

    3. Obergefell v. Hodges

    Denying same-sex couples the right to legally marry is discrimination, rooted solely in irrational animus. It's silly to pretend otherwise; although many people do so pretend, no one with two live neurons to rub together actually believes otherwise in 2015. What else is there to say?

    4. Reed v. Town of Gilbert, Arizona

    A distinction between signs providing directions to an event, and political campaign signs, seems ok to me at first glance. The first amendment allows reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions for spoken speech. I don't see why it wouldn't do so for signs as well.

    5. Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans

    As far as I'm concerned, it depends on the nature of the government's involvement. If it has a slogan or design on the license plate, it can choose the slogan or design. If it has two that the vehicle owner can choose between, it can still choose: it doesn't suddenly gain an obligation to manufacture license plates with whatever slogan or design someone wants. However, if it offers license plates with whatever slogan or design someone wants, it cannot discriminate against unpopular messages.

    It sounds to me as though Texas is basically doing the latter, and must allow the Confederate advocacy group to have its message on license plates (if it meets the content-neutral criteria).

  41. [41] 
    Michale wrote:

    Obama administration stops work on immigrant program
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/obama-administration-ceases-preparation-for-immigration-program/2015/06/07/12a142e6-0ba4-11e5-95fd-d580f1c5d44e_story.html

    And the courts slap down the Obama Administration!!

    What part of "UNCONSTITUTIONAL" does Obama not understand??

    Michale

  42. [42] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's not clear to me what's at stake in this case. People implementing a law always have to interpret it.

    There really isn't any interpretation to make.

    The law clearly states that subsidies are only available to exchanges that were set up by states.. No ambiguity whatsoever.

    The INTENT of that has also made clear by Jonathan Gruber.. It was intentional as a way of coercing the states to set up exchanges. No exchange, no subsidies.

    What's to interpret??

    The significance of a law is often not entirely straightforward.

    Sometimes it is, sometimes it isn't..

    In this case, it IS entirely straightforward..

    But if there were nothing more than that at stake, wouldn't it have been handled by a lower court?

    Exactly. There was no conflict with the lower courts rulings. The simple fact that the SCOTUS took the case is a clear indication of how they intend to rule..

    Denying same-sex couples the right to legally marry is discrimination, rooted solely in irrational animus. It's silly to pretend otherwise; although many people do so pretend, no one with two live neurons to rub together actually believes otherwise in 2015. What else is there to say?

    "The word that keeps coming back to me is 'millennia'. This definition of marriage between two people of the opposite sex has been with us for millennia."
    -Justice Kennedy

    Now we're supposed to change that definition in the blink of an eye to appease a very VERY small minority of people who choose a certain lifestyle??

    There is also Justice Ginsberg quote about how she regretted her Roe V Wade decision because it ended the public debate and forced a social issue that proved to be a detriment on the very issue down the road.

    To me, that indicates the RBG will likely vote against changing the definition of marriage... To let the public debate continue until it's not such an inflaming issue..

    Michale

  43. [43] 
    Michale wrote:

    Denying same-sex couples the right to legally marry is discrimination, rooted solely in irrational animus. It's silly to pretend otherwise; although many people do so pretend, no one with two live neurons to rub together actually believes otherwise in 2015. What else is there to say?

    Taking your position a logical step further, it would be discrimination to prevent a man from marrying his rutabaga or a woman from marrying her porsche. It's still to pretend otherwise...

    Basically your argument is the "EVERYTHING IS AWESOME" argument...

    That societal norms are irrelevant..

    Whatever feels good, do it..

    That's not a society I would like to live in..

    Michale

  44. [44] 
    Michale wrote:

    RE: King V Birdwell

    But let's take ya'all's argument and run with it..

    It was all a colossal typo...

    THAT indicates the problem of pushing thru legislation by parliamentary tricks and back-room dealings and underhanded bribes, etc etc..

    Live by the sword, die by the sword..

    The Democrat Party DESERVES to lose..

    Maybe it will teach the Party a lesson...

    Kinda doubt it, though...

    Michale

  45. [45] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's still to pretend otherwise...

    That should read:

    It's SILLY to pretend otherwise...

    My dyslexia is especially bad in the mornings. :D

    Michale

  46. [46] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    There is one thing you should always remember when it comes to predicting what the Roberts court will do ... he doesn't wish himself or his court to be judged as a complete idiot bunch of idiots.

    That is why the Obamacare and marriage equality decisions will not be the ones you are looking for.

    The problem with that thinking is that you automatically assume that the positions you are against are the idiotic positions..

    I could easily make a logical and rational argument that changing a definition that has been part of civilized society for thousands of years based on the whims of a very very VERY small minority is "idiotic"...

    Roberts might feel the same way.. We know for a fact that Justice Kennedy feels that way..

    As for the TrainWreckCare issue, you want to talk idiotic??

    How about ramming thru a garbage piece of legislation that affects ONE SIXTH of this country's economy by lying, backroom deals and bribery, using parliamentary tricks because if people knew the facts about Obamacare, they would NEVER accept it.

    THAT is idiotic....

    As I have said, the only argument that ya'all can make that is logical and rational is the TOO-BIG-TO-FAIL argument.

    And ya'all just GOTS to appreciate the irony of the fact that THAT is the Left's best argument.. :D

    I know I love it.. heh :D

    Michale

  47. [47] 
    Michale wrote:

    On another note...

    For her candor about the overreach of Title IX, Ms. Kipnis was hit with . . . a Title IX investigation. In an argument that would have made Joseph Stalin blush, two Northwestern students charged that Ms. Kipnis’s criticism of Title IX violated Title IX. The university launched an investigation and subjected Ms. Kipnis to what she has called an “inquisition.”

    She was eventually acquitted, but the episode has left academics and the liberals who love them suddenly complaining about abuse under the law. As the liberal writer Josh Marshall declared on his Talking Points Memo blog, “The very idea that a professor could be hit with a Title IX investigation over an opinion article she wrote in The Chronicle of Higher Education is so palpably ridiculous that there is simply no need to go further.”

    To which many coaches and male athletes who have seen their sport’s program unfairly penalized or canceled under Title IX might reply, like John McClane greeting the LAPD in “Die Hard”: “Welcome to the party, pal.”
    http://www.wsj.com/articles/how-title-ix-became-a-political-weapon-1433715320

    Not really a topic for discussion, although the discussion is right up my alley as far as "Political Correctness Run Amok!" issues go..

    Naw, I just mention it because my "WELCOME TO THE PARTY, PAL!!" was mentioned so prominently.. :D

    Michale

  48. [48] 
    Michale wrote:

    The Administration's argument for TrainWreckCare is thus:

    A Democrat walks into the Quickie Mart and buys a 1 Million Dollar Drawing lottery ticket from Apu... The Dem's numbers are 12, 16, 22, 27, 37 and 42

    The drawing is held and the winning numbers are 08, 14, 28, 33, 35 and 40.

    After the drawing, the Democrat walks into the Quick Mart and tells Apu, "My intent was to play numbers 08, 14, 28, 33, 35 and 40. I would like my million dollars please."

    THAT is the Obama Administration's argument...

  49. [49] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Apologies for continuing an old thread here, but I've been drawn away from my usual participation here recently, and it bears upon the current threads as well - especially the gay marriage decision:

    My point is that the jeweler has already shown tolerance by providing service to a couple that he morally disagrees with..

    Shouldn't it be up to the couple to ALSO show tolerance??

    Why is it that those who so vocally and bully'ingly demand tolerance from others are utterly incapable of showing ANY tolerance themselves??

    My bias is pro-consumer. I would say in general that making one's private political views public in one's place of business entitles the customer to change their mind about such a personally meaningful purchase, even if it goes against what I think is right.

    For example, the same principle would apply to a deeply evangelical couple who bought their wedding rings at a jeweler's store. If after the fact, the store posted a big rainbow flag and a "Marriage Equality For All" banner in their front window, that entitles the evangelical couple to feel like their wedding rings don't carry the meaning they intended. It isn't what they paid for, and they are within their rights to demand their money back.

    My social views being what they are, I don't see the two scenarios as a hundred percent equal, because one view is trying to expand a right and the other is trying to restrict it - I would judge the conservative side in both cases to be more narrow-minded. However, I would also say that in both cases the consumer is entitled to their money back, because they bought something that was supposed to mean something to them, and that meaning changed through the public actions of the business.

    JL

  50. [50] 
    Michale wrote:

    JL,

    My social views being what they are, I don't see the two scenarios as a hundred percent equal, because one view is trying to expand a right and the other is trying to restrict it - I would judge the conservative side in both cases to be more narrow-minded. However, I would also say that in both cases the consumer is entitled to their money back, because they bought something that was supposed to mean something to them, and that meaning changed through the public actions of the business.

    The "meaning" is totally within the consciousness of the customers... The business owner should have absolutely no bearing on how the customer feels about it.

    To think otherwise is to give a total stranger way too much control over a couple's lives...

    Put it in another way..

    A couple married for 50 years finds out that the priest that married them was a pedophile who had been abusing small boys....

    Is the couple any less married for this knowledge??

    Is the couple's love for each other somehow tainted by the dirty deeds of some scumbag??

    Of course not. What that priest did or how that jeweler feels should have absolutely NO bearing on anything...

    I am also constrained to point out that the standard argument from the Left (as espoused by our own John M) is that it's a business transaction, pure and simple... No personal considerations should be part of the equation..

    NOW that we have a case where it WAS truly a business transaction with no personal considerations, NOW the Left wants to make the "it's personal" argument...

    Moreover, you stated before that when it comes to the issue and wedding rings and the personal connections that they have with couples in general, that such personal considerations are relevant and important..

    Then I submit to you that a person's personal connections with their religion is ALSO a personal consideration that is JUST as relevant and JUST as important...

    I am sure you would agree with me that this entire issue is one of tolerance and respect...

    The problem is that those pushing the gay activist agenda is demanding tolerance and respect but not willing to be tolerant and respectful..

    How much better would it be for ALL if a gay couple were to make sure that the people they deal with in their wedding plans are comfortable with the plans. And, if they find a caterer or a baker that ISN'T then, rather than go all media blitz and sue-happy, the couple simply says, "We respect your position and won't bother you further. Perhaps you could recommend someone who is as quality as you but would not have any moral issues??"

    THAT is respect..

    THAT is tolerance...

    Apparently, that is too much to ask from the Left's side of this issue..

    Michale

  51. [51] 
    Michale wrote:

    My bias is pro-consumer. I would say in general that making one's private political views public in one's place of business entitles the customer to change their mind about such a personally meaningful purchase, even if it goes against what I think is right.

    I agree... If the customer wants to change their minds based on the political views of the business owner BEFORE any business is conducted, they have that right..

    But AFTER the fact???

    The jeweler, no doubt, went to considerable time and expense to custome create the rings... He provided the agreed upon service and, by all accounts, the customers were very happy with the service to the point of recommending the jeweler to others..

    But, due to having commisioned the jeweler for the creation of custome rings, is the customer entitled to the jeweler's soul??

    Forever???

    Is there a "statute of limitations" for souls?? :D

    Suppose 10 years had elapsed between the time of the rings creation and the time that the couple found out about the jeweler's religious view of marriage??

    Would a demand for a refund be valid??

    I understand your argument JL and it IS a logical and rational argument..

    But I think the rights of the business owner take precedent.. He did the job as requested with respect and tolerance..

    That is ALL anyone can ask of any business owner..

    Demanding a refund and then threatening the business owner when one was not forthcoming is contemptible and shows everything that's intolerant about the gay activist agenda...

    No pound of flesh should be required..

    Michale

  52. [52] 
    Michale wrote:

    Don't take my word for it..

    Listen to Captain Jean Luc Picard.. :D

    Patrick Stewart Defends Northern Irish Bakery That Rejected 'Support Gay Marriage' Cake
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/05/patrick-stewart-anti-gay-bakery_n_7521450.html

    Michale

  53. [53] 
    Michale wrote:

    I agree... If the customer wants to change their minds based on the political views of the business owner BEFORE any business is conducted, they have that right..

    Although....

    Wouldn't that be considered... "Discrimination"???

    Slippery Slopes Entrance Here ===> <=== :D

    Michale

  54. [54] 
    Michale wrote:

    I would say in general that making one's private political views public in one's place of business entitles the customer to change their mind about such a personally meaningful purchase, even if it goes against what I think is right.

    Which is why I like discussing things like this with you..

    You can step outside the ideology box and look at things objectively..

    You don't do it as much as I would like, but you DO do it.. :D

    Michale

  55. [55] 
    Michale wrote:

    It is being reported that Hillary Clinton has made her first big campaign decision..

    She is going to forgo trying to woo Independents like me and concentrate on exciting Democrats...

    "Big mistake. BIG.. HUGE..."
    -Julia Roberts, PRETTY WOMAN

    If these reports are true, she will lose and lose big..

    No candidate has ever one the Presidency w/o Independents...

    Ignoring Independents will ensure a GOP POTUS in 2017....

    Michale

  56. [56] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    No candidate has ever one the Presidency w/o Independents...

    Mitt Romney won the independent vote in 2012...

  57. [57] 
    Michale wrote:

    Mitt Romney won the independent vote in 2012...

    By only 5%....

    A candidate can't ignore Independents, as Hillary is proposing and win...

    It's that simple...

    Michale

  58. [58] 
    Michale wrote:

    I am also constrained to point out that Obama's election was a one-off and will likely never be repeated..

    Certainly not by someone who is such a cold uncaring campaigner as Hillary Clinton...

    Hillary ain't Bill....

    Michale

  59. [59] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Or so you desperately hope...

    12% of the population is black. Over 50% of the population are women. If Hillery can get a first woman president fervor going, she will pick up more than enough independents and probably a few republicans...

  60. [60] 
    Michale wrote:

    If Hillary can get a first woman president fervor going, she will pick up more than enough independents and probably a few republicans...

    And then you wake up and find it was all a dream..

    What part of HILLARY CAN'T CAMPAIGN do you not understand??

    But your argument is interesting..

    Hillary will win SOLELY because she is a woman..

    Hmmmmmmm

    Sounds kinda sexist to me.. :D

    Michale

  61. [61] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Is that desperation I smell?

    What part of HILLARY CAN'T CAMPAIGN do you not understand??

    The part that got her 46% of the primary delegates in 2008?

    But your argument is interesting..

    Hillary will win SOLELY because she is a woman..

    Are you purposely misrepresenting or just being dense?

    Sounds kinda sexist to me.. :D

    Yawn.

  62. [62] 
    Michale wrote:

    The part that got her 46% of the primary delegates in 2008?

    Yea, that worked out so well for her.. :D

    Is that desperation I smell?

    Hillary's poll numbers have steadily sank. She is now BEHIND Rubio and Paul...

    There is desperation, but it's emanating from the Hillary camp.. :D

    Are you purposely misrepresenting or just being dense?

    You said if Hillary can create "LET'S MAKE A WOMAN PRESIDENT!!" fervor, then she might win the independent vote...

    Basically hoping that people will vote for her simply because she is a woman...

    Sounds pretty sexist to me...

    Yawn.

    Nappy time?? :D

    Michale

  63. [63] 
    Michale wrote:

    The part that got her 46% of the primary delegates in 2008?

    Whose talking about PRIMARY???

    Any Party fanatic can spout off what Party ideologues want to hear... I would be willing to wager that Hillary will likely get 80% of primary delegates..

    Which won't mean diddley squat in the General Election...

    I am talking about CAMPAIGNING...

    Not scripting events and choosing actors to ask softball and bullshit questions...

    Michale

  64. [64] 
    Michale wrote:

    I am also constrained to point out that most Independents don't even CARE about Primaries...

    In many states, Independents aren't even allowed to VOTE in Primaries..

    So, your response is illogical and irrelevant..

    Michale

  65. [65] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Juvenile and pedantic. I bet you are really proud of yourself for that one...

  66. [66] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    [62]

  67. [67] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    I agree... If the customer wants to change their minds based on the political views of the business owner BEFORE any business is conducted, they have that right...

    You're right that this is partly a question of before and after. However, in this case the business owner didn't make his anti-gay views public in his place of business until shortly after the purchase was completed.

    Suppose 10 years had elapsed between the time of the rings creation and the time that the couple found out about the jeweler's religious view of marriage??

    agreed, there ought to be a statute of limitations, a year tops.

    Wouldn't that be considered... "Discrimination"???

    yes, but not the illegal kind. political views don't constitute a protected class.

    JL

  68. [68] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Whose talking about PRIMARY???

    46% of delegates in a hotly contested primary proves the ability to campaign...

  69. [69] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    So, your response is illogical and irrelevant..

    Or your reading ability needs work. One of the two...

  70. [70] 
    Michale wrote:

    46% of delegates in a hotly contested primary proves the ability to campaign...

    .... IN a primary..

    And, if we were discussing a Primary campaign, you would be right..

    But we're not.. We're discussing how Hillary is going to fare against REAL candidates, not pretend primary candidates...

    So, yer response is illogical and irrelevant..

    But, hay.. I'll take it.. :D

    Michale

  71. [71] 
    Michale wrote:

    Bashi,

    We were discussing Independents..

    Independents do NOT factor in, in a primary....

    That is why your response is illogical..

    Michale

  72. [72] 
    Michale wrote:

    You're right that this is partly a question of before and after. However, in this case the business owner didn't make his anti-gay views public in his place of business until shortly after the purchase was completed.

    I am not sure the exact time frame, but I submit it's not relevant for the previous reasons stated..

    As I said, I DO understand your point. And it IS a logical point..

    But, since we're talking about CUSTOME rings that the jeweler will not be able to sell to anyone else and will have to eat the costs...

    I think that takes precedence over any hurt feelings of the gay couple..

    yes, but not the illegal kind. political views don't constitute a protected class.

    I don't think the Left makes any distinction between "legal" discrimination and "illegal" discrimination...

    Michale

  73. [73] 
    Michale wrote:

    Juvenile and pedantic. I bet you are really proud of yourself for that one...

    Which part??? :D

    Michale

  74. [74] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    We were discussing Independents..

    Independents do NOT factor in, in a primary....

    That is why your response is illogical..

    Lets put it in football terms. You are basically saying the loser of the Conference championships suck and don't know how to play football because they lost and did not make it to the Super Bowl. Hillery Clinton fought a tough campaign for the primary, had a very devoted following, remember the PUMA? I get you don't like her but saying she does not know how to campaign is a bunch politically biased non-sense and basically ignores the entire campaign season of 2008, not to mention the entirety of Bill Clinton's political life.

    Trying to pigeon hole me in to a singular view (sexism) because I point out that there was a certain about of fervor around the idea of the first black president and that could easily be repeated with the possibility of the first woman president is silly. Not the least of which, how many times on this site have I ever had such a simplistic view of anything? I can make my own arguments, thank you very much and trying to tell me what my argument is because it's convenient to your on going narrative is annoying, disingenuous and completely devoid of logic or critical thinking.

    Independents are not a political block that votes in unison. By definition. She is going to get quite a bit no matter what she does and only has to be close for them not to matter if a large section of the democratic base comes out to vote for her. You also have yet to back up that she intends to ignore independents as a whole. It's not surprising she would not woo Independents like you as you have pretty much stated you will not vote for her regardless...

  75. [75] 
    Michale wrote:

    JL,

    We live in a free market society...

    If a business does not want to serve a particular customer for any reason, they should have that right..

    At least, that's how it worked when a gay hairdresser did not want to provide service to a Hispanic Governor and was hailed a conquering hero by DiK and HuffPoop...

    But I guess that the right to refuse service to anyone for any reason is solely the right of Left wing business owners, eh?? :D

    Michale

  76. [76] 
    Michale wrote:

    Lets put it in football terms. You are basically saying the loser of the Conference championships suck and don't know how to play football because they lost and did not make it to the Super Bowl. Hillery Clinton fought a tough campaign for the primary, had a very devoted following, remember the PUMA? I get you don't like her but saying she does not know how to campaign is a bunch politically biased non-sense and basically ignores the entire campaign season of 2008, not to mention the entirety of Bill Clinton's political life.

    If we were talking about Bill Clinton, you would have a point.

    But we're not, so you don't..

    It's not *ME* who is saying that Hillary doesn't know how to campaign...

    It's DEMOCRATS who are saying Hillary doesn't know how to campaign..

    And, considering all we have seen from Hillary is scripted events and paid actors who were given their lines to say....

    Well, I have to agree with the DEMOCRATS' assessments..

    You also have yet to back up that she intends to ignore independents as a whole.

    Would it matter if I did??

    Would it change your mind about the issues we are discussion??

    Of course not...

    So, why should I bother???

    It's not surprising she would not woo Independents like you as you have pretty much stated you will not vote for her regardless...

    I know it galls you to admit it, but I am pretty much the Joe Six-Pack Quintessential Independent that Hillary NEEDS to win this election..

    The fact is when it comes to campaigning, Hillary is no Bill...

    Hillary is no Obama...

    Hillary is more like a Romney...

    Insincere as hell, pretentious as hell... Add to that that the majority of Americans simply don't TRUST her...

    Add that all up and you HONESTLY believe that adds up to a winning candidate???

    Washington or Colorado?? :D

    Michale

  77. [77] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Wow, that's a lot of blabbing and no backing up...

  78. [78] 
    Michale wrote:

    Wow, that's a lot of blabbing and no backing up...

    Tell me it would matter and I'll give you a list...

    What exactly do you doubt??

    Michale

  79. [79] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Tell me it would matter and I'll give you a list...

    What exactly do you doubt??

    You've been BS'ing way too much lately to take your word for it. Post it and I will read it. That is all I can promise...

  80. [80] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [2] -

    FDR was a .01%-er too, and he was the strongest voice the poor have ever had in the White House. Not a coincidence Hillary's holding her first campaign rally on Roosevelt Island in NYC.

    As for student IDs, when it's a state university, the state itself is the issuing authority. Just like for gun licenses. Both have photos on them, so what's the problem?

    Michale [3] -

    Really? That's all you got on the Duggar thing? Benghazi and the IRS? Wow, talk about scraping the conservative talking point barrel. I'm just sayin'...

    Pastafarian Dan [5] -

    1 - Warren as Majority Leader... wow, now THERE's a thought!

    :-)

    2 - getting more liberal all the time. You see that report that self-identification of liberals is up and conservatives is down? They've reached parity, in fact.

    Michale [8] -

    Democrats lost because their idea of governing sucks....

    Except for, you know, the popular vote in 5 of the last 6 presidential elections. Heh.

    As you say, "get over it." Practice saying "Madam President," it'll come in handy soon.

    John From Censornati [9] -

    I can't wait for Rubio to truly assume frontrunner position, when the media try to make sense of his positions on just about anything. He is the flip-floppiest presidential candidate I think I've ever seen -- he always wants to have it all ways, even if he said differently like 30 seconds before.

    Michale [11] -

    I have to give you credit, you pushed me into writing Monday's SCOTUS article. Not just this comment, but for a few weeks now you've been asking for my predictions, so I finally went out on a limb and put my markers down. But I have to say, you did push me into writing that column.

    Happy now?

    :-)

    Paula [12] -

    So far, the media's been mostly yawning, but all of Hillary's solid issues-based comments and speeches have been pretty impressive. Her first campaign rally speech should be very interesting, that's for sure. But I agree, run Burnie run!

    Michale [13] -

    Yeah, I actually agree with you on this one. That was a pretty stupid article. I think it was the NY Times, too. (1) Rubio's wife is not running, so hands off (at least, for traffic tickets unless she's been running down schoolkids in crosswalks or something) and (2) Rubio himself didn't have all that many, and (3) you're right, this doesn't rise to the level of even mildly interesting in the presidential race. So this is one of those rare times when we agree. That was a hit piece, and the NYT should be ashamed of it.

    John M [15] -

    Wow, 7-2 in Obergefell? Which of the 3 ultra-conservatives you think will vote with the majority?

    I could see 6-3 on the King case. Shh! Don't tell Michale!

    Heh.

    John M [16] -

    But who will be the 7th pro-marriage-euqality vote? Inquiring minds want to know.

    Michale [19] -

    OK, I'll bite. What exactly would the "too big to fail" argument be? That because the system has already gone into effect, too many people would be adversely affected? Or something else?

    Michale [20] -

    One question in oral arguments doesn't always indicate which way a justice is going to vote. Especially Kennedy, or anyone known as the "swing vote." They're usally quite coy in the questions they ask, so that nobody can accurately "read the tea leaves" before the decision is announced.

    Oh, tangent here, something I forgot when writing Monday's column -- I find it extraordinary how tightly held the SCOTUS decisions are. Think about it: they vote like the Friday after oral arguments (they sit in a room and hold a preliminary vote, and then Roberts assigns who is going to write minority and majority opinions). This is like months and months before the public hears. But I cannot for the life of me ever remember when one of these decisions has been leaked beforehand. That's a pretty stunning record of not leaking things, in Washington.

    Like I said, a tangent. Just thought of it while writing the Monday column, but didn't include it for some reason.

    Michale [21] -

    Yeah, yeah, hint, hint, nudge, nudge, wink, wink.

    Hey, I wrote it all out Monday! You win!

    :-)

    Michale [28] -

    Which groups were actually denied? Name one.

    John M [30] -

    Yeah, Michale, what he said!

    :-)

    OK, I gotta take a break. More comment responses later, promise...

    -CW

  81. [81] 
    John M wrote:

    Chris wrote:

    "Wow, 7-2 in Obergefell? Which of the 3 ultra-conservatives you think will vote with the majority?

    But who will be the 7th pro-marriage-euqality vote? Inquiring minds want to know."

    In upholding all of the to date Lower Court rulings in favor of gay marriage, the Supreme Court vote has been 7 to 2, like the appeal from the Circuit Court of which Alabama is a part. The only Justices, on the record, to vote against gay marriage thus far regarding the Lower Circuit Court rulings, have been Scalia and Thomas. The Supreme Court only decided to take the case after the 6th Circuit ruled against gay marriage in Ohio et al. To me, that clearly telegraphs that the Supreme Court is going to rule in FAVOR of gay marriage, otherwise why let the previous lower court rulings in favor of gay marriage stand?

  82. [82] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    John M [81] -

    Wow, ALITO voted in favor? That's pretty stunning.

    We'll have to see what the final vote is, but thanks for laying out your reasoning. I hadn't heard the bit about the 7-2 votes for upholding all the lower appellate court decisions, so that is certainly food for thought. As I said, thanks for pointing it out.

    -CW

  83. [83] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    akadjian [32] -

    Yeah, the WaPo seems to be trying to catch up with other media outlets who have a sort of a "cool charts of the week" column. So far, they've had some very interesting ones. I don't know where else they fit, since they usually don't rise to writing a column about it (since they already did, mostly), so I stick them in here on FTP just to add to their click-bait appeal. Call me shallow, but some of these charts are pretty cool!

    Here's a preview of this week's, which is freakin' hilarious ("Voldemort more popular than most Republican candidates!" -- now THAT's a headline!):

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2015/06/09/voldemort-is-polling-better-than-many-republican-presidential-candidates/

    You are most eminently welcome.

    Heh.

    Michale [34] -

    You checked any of those groups supposedly still waiting recently? The IRS has all but thrown in the towel on regulating any political groups, and recognition is almost automatic by now. Don't believe me? See that link up above for the First Church of Cannabis in Indiana... they expected to wait like 180 days, and they got approved in less than 30... so double-check any groups you're complaining about, I bet they've all been approved by now....

    [36] -

    See, this is what I mean, That article is from 2013.

    [38] -

    No, what you're describing is what black people in the South had to go through to try to vote. Granted, at the time the Democrats were the bad (and racist) guys, but times have changed since then.

    LizM [39] -

    Oh, DING DING DING -- We have a WINNER!!!

    Excellent comment, excellent point.

    Just had to say that.

    dsws [40] -

    Yeah, I finally got to my predictions Monday, but only for King and Obergefell.

    King v. Burwell

    What's at stake is should one phrase within a law be read literally -- even if it contradicts many other parts of the same law -- or should the "overall intent" of the law supersede one badly-written clause? It's a legal thing, beyond the whole Obamacare situation.

    Horne v. Department of Agriculture

    I dunno, I tend to side with the raisins on this one. After all, they did such a great job of "I Heard It Through The Grapevine."

    Heh.

    No, seriously, trade organizations have too much power at times. Milk boards, raisin growers, fruit growers, etc. all occasionally tend to make me scratch that libertarian itch in my own political makeup. They have tremendous power (and the government boards who set the rules for them), and I'm not entirely convinced it's constitutional.

    Of course, I say that without having done a deep dive into the facts in this particular case; it's just an admission of my own personal bias on this sort of thing. I promise I'll pay better attention to the facts of the case when the decision is announced, how's that?

    Obergefell v. Hodges

    Yeah, this one's pretty much a no-brainer, at this point, I agree.

    Reed v. Town of Gilbert, Arizona

    I dunno, this one immediately seemed to be discriminatory to me, but then I admit I don't know much about the actual details. Again, I promise to look into it in greated detail when the decision comes down.

    Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans

    This is a very tricky one, for me. The question seems to come down to what is "approved" by the state for their plates. Seems like, since their state name is on the plate and they control them and manufacture them, they should have some filter.

    Take, for example, personalized plates. All states (that I'm aware of, at least) have filters in place. You can't order a plate with profanity on it, for instance. There are lots of tough decisions on these plates (there was a California case back in the early 1990s or thereabouts with a guy that wanted "HIV POS" as a license plate, which was rejected by the state).

    [ASIDE: In (?) Mad magazine back in the 1970s (not sure, it may have been a photo magazine or Games magazine or even Playboy, memories of that age are fuzzy...) I saw the best personalized plate ... "sneak it by the censors" ... that I've ever seen (it was blue and gold, which places the plate on the CA plate timeline). The plate read:

    FAA  Q

    Hint: read it out loud. Heh.]

    So the state has some say-so. They wouldn't, for instance, allow a plate from the "Overthrow the American government movement" or the "Society To Kill All Cops," now would they? These are illegal aims, therefore censorable speech.

    But -- and here's the crux of the matter -- would the state refuse a "KKK" license plate?

    Governments are safest (when it comes to First Amendment cases) when they allow all or allow none. The KKK is actually relevant, because there was a case (Missouri? I forget) a while back where the local KKK wanted to join the "clean up the highways" program. This was a big thing in the 1980s (or so), and each group that volunteered to pick up highway trash got a little state-paid-for sign along the highway stating: "This stretch of road is maintained by Group X." The KKK wanted their sign.

    But the thing is, while I use an extreme example, this is the same basic legal concept that forces high schools to choose between (1) allowing gay support groups (PFLAG) to meet after school in their facilities, or (2) ban all after-school groups. So liberals use this legal concept as well in court battles.

    Again, the Confederate flag on a state-issued license plate is very troubling for me on many levels, but the legalisms of the case aren't that easy to parse. I'll be very interested in how this one shakes out, either way.

    Michale [42] -

    OK, I'm getting tired of your "millennia" comment.

    Marriage has changed considerably in the past few millenia.

    The Bible is totally OK with polygamy. God too.

    Marriage was a property arrangement (see: dowry) for centuries.

    The people who argued against interracial marriage used exactly the same "Biblically-based" arguments.

    Raping your wife used to not be a crime.

    Wives used to not be able to own property their husbands did not control.

    Seriously, marriage laws change all the time. This is one more change. It's coming. Get used to it. The Kennedy question was a red herring he threw out there for people like you to misinterpret.

    One oyster does not make a stew. One oral question does not guarantee an opinion, one way or the other -- especially with a swing-vote justice.

    nypoet22 [49] -

    OK, I'm working backwards in time, so I will read your old thread later, but just had to say "good to see you 'round here!"

    :-)

    Also, had to say your comment is an interesting take I've never heard before. Mostly for coming at it from the angle of "getting a refund later". Hadn't looked at it from that angle before, so I'll have to read the previous threads before I make up my mind, but have to thank you for some food for thought.

    Michale [51] -

    OK, (see above) I realize I'm jumping in this thread in the middle, but...

    I accept the validity of your argument. But what I would urge you to consider is taking your own arguments on gay marriage, and reconsidering them on the following terms: replace "gay marriage" with "interracial marriage."

    Now, you know me well enough to understand that I am not calling you a racist by this thought experiment. This is truly a thought experiment, not a full-frontal attack, in other words.

    But, like I said, I challenge you to re-read your own arguments and substitute "gay marriage" with "interracial marriage." Now, the key: which of these argument would you consider valid?

    This is key to understanding how "the other side" sees the argument.

    You can argue that this is not an appropriate analogy. Fine, I accept that. But what I'm trying to show you is two things: (1) this is how gay people see it -- as a matter of civil and human rights, and (2) the same religious arguments were used in the "miscegenation" political fight in the 1960s (I can cite you the Biblical chapter and verse they used, if you need convincing). The states were not allowed to vote on the Loving v. Virginia decision, it was imposed by SCOTUS.

    That's all I ask. Check your own arguments, and see which ones you'd agree with if the subject were "a black man and a white woman" instead of "two men" or "two women."

    It's a matter of perspective, in other words, for the way the other side sees it.

    Michale [52] -

    I saw that Picard (Patrick Stewart) thing, and was interested in it. The collision of free speech, freedom of religion, and commerce is indeed a pickle.

    Michale [57] -

    So what Republican is currently obsessing over the Independent vote? Please let us all know, pray tell....

    Heh.

    [58] -

    I think you meant "Obama's election was a two-off," don't you?

    [snerk snerk snerk]

    [60] -

    Like the argument Carly Fiorina is making? "I'm the only Republican who can take on Hillary BECAUSE I'M A WOMAN!"

    Heh.

    [62] -

    Hillary's poll numbers have steadily sank. She is now BEHIND Rubio and Paul...

    Rubio currently polling at: 10.3% among GOP voters
    Paul currently polling at: 8.8% among GOP voters
    Clinton currently polling at: 59.0% among Dem voters

    Rubio v. Clinton:
    Rubio 43.3; Clinton 47.5

    Paul v. Clinton:
    Paul 44.0; Clinton 46.8

    Links:

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2016/president/us/2016_republican_presidential_nomination-3823.html

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2016/president/us/2016_democratic_presidential_nomination-3824.html

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2016/president/2016_presidential_race.html

    If you're smelling desperation, it's coming from the other direction, pal. Sorry about that, but them's the facts, Jack.

    No one -- that is NO ONE -- on the GOP side has ever polled nationally above Hillary. When they do, maybe your argument might make the tiniest iota of sense. Until that happens, however, you've got nothing to go on.

    "Show me the numbers"
    (apologies to Jerry Maguire)

    OK, I have actually REACHED THE END of the comments. Whew -- Friday columns are tought when I write them, and they're tough afterwards too...

    :-)

    -CW

  84. [84] 
    Michale wrote:

    FDR was a .01%-er too, and he was the strongest voice the poor have ever had in the White House. Not a coincidence Hillary's holding her first campaign rally on Roosevelt Island in NYC.m

    And if you can convince me that Hillary is an FDR, you would have a point.. :D

    As for student IDs, when it's a state university, the state itself is the issuing authority. Just like for gun licenses. Both have photos on them, so what's the problem?

    Nope.. They are not.. Because they serve no function outside the university, they are not official IDs...

    Get ahold of a University ID and compare it to your Drivers License if ya don't believe me..

    Really? That's all you got on the Duggar thing? Benghazi and the IRS? Wow, talk about scraping the conservative talking point barrel. I'm just sayin'...

    Two words..

    Lena Dunham, Liberal Hero...

    OK, that's 4 words.. :D

    Except for, you know, the popular vote in 5 of the last 6 presidential elections. Heh.

    And, if our elections made the popular vote relevant, you would have a point.. :D

    As you say, "get over it." Practice saying "Madam President," it'll come in handy soon.

    I have absolutely NO PROBLEM with saying "Madam President"...

    Just not to THIS madam...

    She is a crook.. I mean, honestly...

    What does it say about your candidate when the BEST thing that CAN be said about all her unethical activities is, "Well, there's no smoking gun!!!"

    I mean, honestly....

    I have to give you credit, you pushed me into writing Monday's SCOTUS article. Not just this comment, but for a few weeks now you've been asking for my predictions, so I finally went out on a limb and put my markers down. But I have to say, you did push me into writing that column.

    Happy now?

    :-)

    I am grinning like the proverbial cat and canary.. :D

    Yeah, I actually agree with you on this one. That was a pretty stupid article. I think it was the NY Times, too. (1) Rubio's wife is not running, so hands off (at least, for traffic tickets unless she's been running down schoolkids in crosswalks or something) and (2) Rubio himself didn't have all that many, and (3) you're right, this doesn't rise to the level of even mildly interesting in the presidential race. So this is one of those rare times when we agree. That was a hit piece, and the NYT should be ashamed of it.

    Oh, it get's worse...

    The NY TIMES wrote another hit piece and complained that Rubio bought a "luxury power boat" that was nothing more than a 24 FT Family Fishing Boat.. :D

    And it was Democrat Opposition Groups that fed the NY TIMES the story. It wasn't even the Times own reporting..

    I tell ya, Democrats must REALLY be worried about Rubio...

    OK, I'll bite. What exactly would the "too big to fail" argument be? That because the system has already gone into effect, too many people would be adversely affected? Or something else?

    Exactly. The Left has been arguing about TBTF since the Bush Administration..

    NOW the Left is hanging their hat on the TBTF argument to save TrainWreckCare...

    Ya just GOTTA appreciate the irony... :D

    That's a pretty stunning record of not leaking things, in Washington.

    I completely agree with you... I would LOVE to see the mechanism the Justices have in place to insure security...

    Which groups were actually denied? Name one.

    I gave you the chart the last time this came up. Too lazy to go back and get it..

    But, since you bring it up, read comment #38

    OK, I'm getting tired of your "millennia" comment.

    I stick with the arguments that work. And to date, NO ONE has been able to successfully refute it..

    Like now..

    TYPES of marriage has changed through the centuries...

    But the very basic of marriage has been unchanged for thousands of years.

    A man and a woman.. Sometimes women, to be sure. But it's always been man and woman...

    THAT has not changed...

    Until anyone can successfully refute that argument, I will continue to use it..

    Because it's the crux of the issue...

    The Kennedy question was a red herring he threw out there for people like you to misinterpret.

    I know you want to believe that.. :D

    So what Republican is currently obsessing over the Independent vote? Please let us all know, pray tell....

    You and Bashi are making the exact same mistake.. You conflate PRIMARY with GENERAL...

    Let me say it slow so it can be understood..

    NO CANDIDATE HAS TO WORRY ABOUT THE INDEPENDENT VOTE IN THE PRIMARY...

    By and large, Independents aren't even allowed to VOTE in Dem/GOP Primaries...

    Like the argument Carly Fiorina is making? "I'm the only Republican who can take on Hillary BECAUSE I'M A WOMAN!"

    *Exactly* like that..

    I am glad we agree...

    No one -- that is NO ONE -- on the GOP side has ever polled nationally above Hillary. When they do, maybe your argument might make the tiniest iota of sense. Until that happens, however, you've got nothing to go on.

    Yer right.. I should have been clearer..

    Allow me to re-phrase..

    In SOME polls, Hillary is BEHIND Rubio & Paul...

    When they do, maybe your argument might make the tiniest iota of sense. Until that happens, however, you've got nothing to go on.

    And when they do, when Hillary DOES fall behind in RCP polls??

    What will be ya'all's argument then?? :D

    Because you just HAVE to know that that day is coming... Hillary's numbers have been steadily sinking as scandal after scandal after scandal has come out..

    And, with the judges order to release a batch of Clinton Emails a month???

    Drip, drip, drip..

    "What will you do?? What WILL you do??"

    (apologies to SPEED)

    WHEW!!! These marathons are draining!! :D

    Michale

  85. [85] 
    Michale wrote:

    That's all I ask. Check your own arguments, and see which ones you'd agree with if the subject were "a black man and a white woman" instead of "two men" or "two women."

    I addressed this separately because I hope we can continue this particular discussion..

    If I understand you correctly, you want me to address the argument thusly..

    An black/white couple go into a jewelry store to have custome rings made... They are very happy with the product and heap lavish praise on the jeweler. They recommend the jeweler to their friends...

    A couple weeks later, they learn from one of those friends that the jeweler is a racist and opposes interracial marriage...

    They feel that their rings are tainted and they demand a refund..

    That about sum things up??

    My response and my argument is identical..

    Any "taint" is ONLY in the minds of the couple...

    The rings are EXACTLY the same.. The love the couple has is EXACTLY the same... The jeweler is EXACTLY the same...

    If they were happy with the rings and happy with the service, the fact they found out something unsavory about the jeweler is completely and unequivocally irrelevant..

    They may not want to wear the rings any more.

    They may want to commission a new pair from a more ideologically pleasing jeweler..

    But they have no right to a refund..

    And, if they want to initiate a boycott against the jeweler because he is a racist??

    Fine. Have at it. I might be so inclined to join them for that. Not really because I hate boycotts... But you get the idea...

    But to initiate a boycott against the jeweler because he won't issue them a refund??

    Blatant extortion..

    You can change the arguments six ways from Sunday...

    Make it a gay couple..

    Make it an inter-racial couple..

    Make it a Klingon and a Cardassian couple...

    Make it a Gorn and a Ferengi couple...

    My position and my argument is the same...

    No refund AFTER the fact.. The job was done to the satisfaction of ALL partys...

    That is the only relevant fact...

    Michale

  86. [86] 
    Michale wrote:

    I mean, seriously...

    Step outside the box and look at exactly what you are pushing..

    You want the jeweler punished..

    Not for ANY actions he took, but for what he believes...

    The jeweler committed a Thought Crime and ya'all want him punished for that..

    Is that REALLY the side ya'all want to come down on???

    Michale

  87. [87] 
    Michale wrote:

    Make it a Gorn and a Ferengi couple...

    But, I would have to wonder at the... er... "mechanics" of such a relationship.... :D

    Michale

  88. [88] 
    Michale wrote:

    Seriously, marriage laws change all the time.

    Yes.. Marriage *LAWS* change all the time..

    But the definition??? Man Woman?? Man Women???

    The DEFINITION has constant for thousands of years...

    These are the facts...

    Michale

  89. [89] 
    Michale wrote:

    To put the "definition" argument in context..

    Postulate a scenario where we have a group of people who choose to dye their pet monkeys' hair purple..

    THEN these purple-haired monkey owning people mount an activist campaign to change the definition of a "person" that includes monkeys with purple hair..

    Ridiculous, eh??

    It's ridiculous to change the definition that has been, literally, written in stone for thousands and thousands of years...

    THAT is the argument that is being made regarding gay marriage...

    Gay marriage has been around as an issue for a couple decades, if that...

    Marriage, defined as a man and a woma(e)n, has been around for THOUSANDS of years...

    Ignore the emotionalism and look at the issue objectively..

    There is only one possible choice here..

    Civil Unions...

    If the issue was about equality, then Civil Unions would suffice...

    But the issue isn't about equality. It's about acceptance...

    And if acceptance cannot be obtained on it's merits, then it must be FORCED onto people...

    THAT is the thinking of the gay activists...

    Michale

  90. [90] 
    Michale wrote:

    Postulate a scenario where we have a group of people who choose to dye their pet monkeys' hair purple..

    THEN these purple-haired monkey owning people mount an activist campaign to change the definition of a "person" that includes monkeys with purple hair..

    Ridiculous, eh??

    ANYONE who tries to accuse me of equating gay people with monkeys, I will surely taunt you a second time...

    :D

    Michale

  91. [91] 
    Michale wrote:

    And, since the issue of legal/illegal was brought up..

    If this gay couple/jeweler case had gone to court, you just HAVE to know that the law is completely and unequivocally and demonstrably on the side of the jeweler...

    Michale

  92. [92] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "Make it a Gorn and a Ferengi couple...

    But, I would have to wonder at the... er... "mechanics" of such a relationship.... :D"

    I don't think it would be any weirder than a Centauri and a Narn couple. Ever watch Babylon 5 Michale? :-D

  93. [93] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "Civil Unions...

    If the issue was about equality, then Civil Unions would suffice..."

    There are two problems with that Michale, that you conveniently overlook.

    1.) Separate but equal has NEVER worked in this country.

    2.) Gay activists were actually quite happy to accept civil unions in the beginning. But then when the anti-gay marriage crowd started passing state constitutional bans, they included civil unions in those bans too!!!

  94. [94] 
    Michale wrote:

    I don't think it would be any weirder than a Centauri and a Narn couple. Ever watch Babylon 5 Michale? :-D

    Ohmigods, that was a great series!!

    Fell apart in the 5th season because the "story" had been told.. Kinda like SUPERNATURAL after Season 5...

    But the story was awesome!!

    1.) Separate but equal has NEVER worked in this country.

    Really?? So, men/women bathrooms don't work???

    Who knew?? :D

    Gay activists were actually quite happy to accept civil unions in the beginning.

    No, the Gay COMMUNITY was happy to accept civil unions. The Gay ACTIVISTS want more..

    They want acceptance..

    Michale

  95. [95] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    You want to see the numbers??

    Ask and ye shall receive...

    HILLARY’S SCANDALS SINK IN WITH VOTERS
    It was three months ago today that news broke about Hillary Clinton’s use of a secret email server. In that time we have been told that Clinton’s email practices wouldn’t hurt her chances and wouldn’t amount to more than “a bunch of people flapping they jaws about nothing.” Of the allegations that the former secretary of state did favors in office for donors and benefactors we have been told endlessly that without a “smoking gun” voters would not fault her. As for her effort to avoid the scandals by shunning the media in favor of canned events, it was “surprisingly effective.” But two new polls out today suggest that the toll is mounting for the presumptive Democratic nominee.

    One from CNN and another from WaPo/ABC News show Clinton has sustained serious damage. The CNN poll shows Clinton at her lowest favorability rating since any time since 2001 and has her advantage over potential Republican rivals collapsing, most notably against Sens. Marco Rubio and Rand Paul and Gov. Scott Walker, with Walker closing the gap by 19 points since April to trail by only 3 points. And remember, this poll is of all adults not just registered voters, who tend to be less Democratic. In the same poll, Clinton was deemed honest by 42 percent of respondents, an 8-point slide since April.

    The WaPo/ABC News poll has similar if less acrid findings for Clinton’s stature and this explains why: “Half of all Americans disapprove of the way she has handled questions about the Clinton Foundation, and 55 percent disapprove of how she has handled questions about her personal e-mails as secretary of state. Meanwhile, half also disapprove of the way she has dealt with questions about the attack on a U.S. diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya, on Sept. 11, 2012…”
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2015/06/02/hillarys-scandals-sink-in-with-voters/?intcmp=ob_article_sidebar_video&intcmp=obinsite

    Read 'em and weep.... :D

    Michale

  96. [96] 
    Michale wrote:

    No, the Gay COMMUNITY was happy to accept civil unions. The Gay ACTIVISTS want more..

    Don't believe me??

    Ask your gay friends who are NOT activists the following question.

    "If you were to be joined to a same-sex partner and you had the option of a union that had all of the legal rights and benefits of a traditional marriage without any of the religious overtones or connotations of a traditional marriage, would such a Civil Union be acceptable to you?"

    I would bet you a million quatloos that EVERYONE in the gay community (non-activists excluded) would be perfectly satisfied with that...

    Anyone who would NOT accept that is simply proving beyond any doubt that equality is not the goal...

    Acceptance and approval is the goal...

    Michale

  97. [97] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    NO CANDIDATE HAS TO WORRY ABOUT THE INDEPENDENT VOTE IN THE PRIMARY...

    So instead of backing up your argument, you disprove it. Nice. If no candidate has to worry about the independent vote in the primary then why do you care if Hillary decides to "forgo trying to woo Independents like me and concentrate on exciting Democrats...".

    She can always turn back to independents after the primary season is over and we turn to the general election, because "no candidate has to worry about the independent vote in the primary." You even wrote it in all caps so it must be true, heh...

  98. [98] 
    Michale wrote:

    So instead of backing up your argument, you disprove it. Nice. If no candidate has to worry about the independent vote in the primary then why do you care if Hillary decides to "forgo trying to woo Independents like me and concentrate on exciting Democrats...".

    Siiiggghhhhh

    Because, according to the article, the Clinton Campaign was deciding their GENERAL ELECTION strategy....

    "Did IQs just drop suddenly while I was away"
    -Ripley, ALIENS

    Michale

  99. [99] 
    Michale wrote:

    Honestly, who does Clinton have to worry about in the primary??

    O'Malley!???

    BERNIE!!???

    Shirley you jest...

    Michale

  100. [100] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Because, according to the article, the Clinton Campaign was deciding their GENERAL ELECTION strategy....

    The article you have yet to post?

    "Did IQs just drop suddenly while I was away"
    -Ripley, ALIENS

    I'm a bit worried, you might want to test yourself to find out...

  101. [101] 
    Michale wrote:

    Because, according to the article, the Clinton Campaign was deciding their GENERAL ELECTION strategy....

    The article you have yet to post?

    OK, let's try it this way..

    Would you agree that, if the Clinton Campaign *IS* planning on ignoring Independents and just concentrating on Party Faithful in the general election.....

    Would you agree that THAT is a bonehead move??

    A simple yes or no is all that is required...

    Betcha can't... :D

    Michale

  102. [102] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    OK, let's try it this way..

    Are you really that afraid of me reading the article? I guess it must not say what you are trying to pawn it off as saying...

    Betcha can't... :D

    Ya, post the article first laughing boy...

  103. [103] 
    Michale wrote:

    I didn't think so..

    I am not going to waste my time digging up the article so you can bloviate over what the definition of "is" is....

    Suffice it to say that Hillary's PARTY FAITHFUL ONLY strategy in the general election is moronic..

    And anyone NOT enslaved by Party ideology would agree....

    Michale

  104. [104] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    And anyone NOT enslaved by Party ideology would agree....

    Well, don't forget those who hide behind double super secret articles...

    Suffice it to say that Hillary's PARTY FAITHFUL ONLY strategy in the general election is moronic..

    Lets make stuff up and argue against it! Is that your new posting strategy? But I read an article that confirms it, believe me, nudge, nudge, wink, wink...

    Until you provide the article I'm going with your "NO CANDIDATE HAS TO WORRY ABOUT THE INDEPENDENT VOTE IN THE PRIMARY...". Otherwise it's all just speculation and hot air...

  105. [105] 
    Michale wrote:

    Until you provide the article I'm going with your "NO CANDIDATE HAS TO WORRY ABOUT THE INDEPENDENT VOTE IN THE PRIMARY...".

    So, we are in complete agreement... :D

    Common ground...

    Michale

  106. [106] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Really?? So, men/women bathrooms don't work???

    next time you and your wife get out of a crowded theater and both need to go badly, ask her. :)

    but that's neither here nor there when it comes to marriage vs. civil union/domestic partnership.

    under federal law and between different states, they are NOT equal. If you're going to campaign for a federal law that requires all civil unions and domestic partnerships to be treated a hundred percent equally to civil marriages in all states and all divisions of the federal government, then I'm right there with you. but until and unless that happens, it is not just "acceptance" that same-gender spouses are campaigning for. Here are the legal facts:

    http://family.findlaw.com/domestic-partnerships/civil-unions-v-marriage.html

    regarding the jeweler and the wedding ring, i understand and respect your point of view, in terms of there being a contract between buyer and seller. let's forget for a second the public relations campaign that came later, and focus on the facts of the transaction itself:

    Fact 1 is the timeline: the transaction had not yet been completed - the rings had been made but were not yet delivered.

    Fact 2 is how and when the couple came to know of the jeweler's political view regarding their marriage: a large banner was placed in front of the store after payment and production but before delivery.

    I'm no expert in canadian contract law, but i can tell you that at least one party believes that the conditions of the purchase were changed by the seller prior to the completion of the transaction.

    imagine for a second that this was something more mundane, like the engraving didn't seem as pretty to the couple as it had looked when they ordered it. would they then not be entitled to send it back and demand a refund? and if the seller insisted this was exactly what they ordered and no refund would be given, are those people not entitled to gather friends together to post negative reviews of the shop for bad business practice?

    I don't necessarily have a good answer for this, but you're the businessperson, not me. How much is it worth to do something that you know will make many potential customers unhappy?

    JL

  107. [107] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    CW- I posted a fairly extensive comment, and it may have been swallowed due to this link

    http://family.findlaw.com/domestic-partnerships/civil-unions-v-marriage.html

  108. [108] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW- I posted a fairly extensive comment, and it may have been swallowed due to this link

    http://family.findlaw.com/domestic-partnerships/civil-unions-v-marriage.html

    Interesting article, JL..

    I agree that Civil Unions DO have to be "upgraded" a little...

    And I would wholly and completely support such an "upgrade"...

    But I am willing to wager that the gay activists would NOT support the creation of a Civil Union that, legally, is identical to traditional marriage in every respect..

    Because it doesn't give the activists what they really want..

    Acceptance.. Approval..

    Michale

  109. [109] 
    Michale wrote:

    Speaking of teaching... (I know we weren't, but this is Friday, after all.. :D)

    I'm a liberal professor, and my liberal students terrify me
    http://www.vox.com/2015/6/3/8706323/college-professor-afraid

    Look what hyper hysterical PC Liberals have wrought...

    Michale

  110. [110] 
    Michale wrote:

    From the above article...

    So it's not just that students refuse to countenance uncomfortable ideas — they refuse to engage them, period.

    Truer words were never spoken... I see that a lot around here...

    Michale

  111. [111] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    in case my earlier post remains mired in the ether, my comments on the jeweler are that the germane facts are the timing of events and the change in the conditions of the transaction. I agree that if the customer had worn the rings for a year (much less ten years) they'd have no standing whatsoever to demand a refund. but the rings had not been delivered and therefore the purchase was not complete. if you order something and there's something about the purchase that you don't like (even something irrational or discriminatory), it's within your rights as a customer to cancel the transaction prior to receiving the product. as long as you were acting in good faith and not planning to cancel the whole time, that's the risk a business takes. that particular business changed the conditions of the purchase by posting a big sign in their store. If the couple had looked up the business owner on their own impetus, I think it would be different.

    if you read, I think the business owner himself ultimately acknowledged that the couple were acting in good faith and not egging on abuse, so he granted the refund on that basis.

  112. [112] 
    Michale wrote:

    <I. it's within your rights as a customer to cancel the transaction prior to receiving the product.

    It was my understanding that several weeks had transpired between the time that the custome rings were made *and* delivered and the time that the couple found out about the jeweler's feelings on the matter...

    If what you state is accurate, that the rings hadn't been delivered yet, that DOES throw another wrinkle into the mix...

    so he granted the refund on that basis.

    The article I read related that the jeweler finally relented and agreed to the refund only after the couple and other gay activists threatened a boycott...

    Michale

  113. [113] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    But I am willing to wager that the gay activists would NOT support the creation of a Civil Union that, legally, is identical to traditional marriage in every respect...

    I'm not sure i agree with this. the LGBTQ community would certainly not be completely satisfied with such a law. however, if full marriage equality is not granted, i think they would still see it as progress to have a law granting full legal equality to civil unions on a national scale.

    JL

  114. [114] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    addendum: i wonder if that's the direction the roberts court will go.

  115. [115] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'm not sure i agree with this. the LGBTQ community would certainly not be completely

    How many letters are we going to add to this "community"??

    L and G... OK... B?? yea, it's a stretch...

    T??? Com'on!!!

    What the frak is 'Q'???

    Michale

  116. [116] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    depends on who you ask. could be "queer" meaning not entirely a member of any other defined category or "questioning" and as yet undetermined.

  117. [117] 
    dsws wrote:

    No one would be happy with separate but "equal". The sole purpose of separate but "equal" is to not have it actually be equal.

  118. [118] 
    Michale wrote:

    No one would be happy with separate but "equal". The sole purpose of separate but "equal" is to not have it actually be equal.

    Seems to work OK for men and women bathrooms.

    Separate... But equal...

    Michale

  119. [119] 
    Michale wrote:

    depends on who you ask. could be "queer" meaning not entirely a member of any other defined category or "questioning" and as yet undetermined.

    Isn't 'gay' and 'queer' redundant??

    Did I just commit some horrible PC affront??

    But that illustrates my point perfectly regarding this whole mess..

    Michale

  120. [120] 
    Michale wrote:

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/articles/you-will-be-assimilated_969581.html

    Further evidence that gay activists are content with equality..

    In addition to Acceptance and Approval??

    Gay activists also want vengeance...

    Michale

  121. [121] 
    Michale wrote:

    Hay JM,

    It’s time for the LGBT community to start moving beyond genetic predisposition as a tool for gaining mainstream acceptance of gay rights. .??. For decades now, it’s been the most powerful argument in the LGBT arsenal: that we were “born this way.” .??.??.Still, as compelling as these arguments are, they may have outgrown their usefulness. With most Americans now in favor of gay marriage, it’s time for the argument to shift to one where genetics don’t matter. The genetic argument has boxed us into a corner.
    -Gay Dancer & Writer Brandon Ambrosino

    Sexuality is a characteristic to be actively constructed by the self.
    -Alexander Borinsky

    Still want to claim it's a choice and nothing but a choice?? :D

    Michale

  122. [122] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Seems to work OK for men and women bathrooms.

    Apropos to nothing else in particular, but next time you and your wife are the last ones out of a crowded theater and both badly need to use the rest room, ask HER just how well that system works.

    :)

    JL

  123. [123] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Isn't 'gay' and 'queer' redundant??

    No. "Gay," although women may use it, refers primarily to men who only like men. "Queer" as reclaimed by the queer community, is an all-inclusive term that basically means anyone whose orientation is something other than opposite-sex only. not all of those orientations fall neatly into LGB or T. Although i've heard the Q can mean queer, my sense is that questioning is the more common usage.

    JL

  124. [124] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    No one would be happy with separate but "equal". The sole purpose of separate but "equal" is to not have it actually be equal.

    charles hamilton houston (thurgood marshall's mentor) spent most of his legal career campaigning to force the "separate but equal" states to come closer to being equal. While full equality and the removal of the separation was certainly his goal, i think he definitely saw his work as moving in the right direction.

    likewise, federal legislation forcing civil unions to be treated with full legal equality would be a step in the right direction. it wouldn't make everyone happy, but it would be cause for optimism.

    JL

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