ChrisWeigant.com

Archive of Articles in the "American Society" Category

Friday Talking Points -- Done Dirt Cheap!

[ Posted Friday, December 14th, 2018 – 19:14 PST ]

Our title today comes, of course, from former Donald Trump lawyer (and jailbird-to-be) Michael Cohen, who during his sentencing hearing this week said of Donald Trump: "Time and time again, I felt it was my duty to cover up his dirty deeds."

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The Reality Television Presidency

[ Posted Wednesday, December 12th, 2018 – 18:24 PST ]

President Donald Trump sat down with incoming Democratic congressional leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer yesterday, and he kept the cameras rolling to capture the first time the three had met in over a year's time. What ensued was nothing short of The Apprentice: Oval Office. The only real difference being that Trump is now playing the role of the apprentice, still getting up to speed after two years on the job. Pelosi and Schumer, or as Trump likes to call them, "Chuck and Nancy," spent a little over 15 minutes schooling the president on: the outcome of the midterm elections, how Congress works, the legislative process, border security, and (as a bonus) what is true and what is not. Reality television at its finest!

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Friday Talking Points -- Mr. Trump's Wild Ride

[ Posted Friday, December 7th, 2018 – 17:44 PST ]

As is now normal, the past week in politics was a pretty wild ride. The stock market went up, then way down, then a bit back up, then way down again -- and that was in a week with only four trading days (Wednesday was a national day of mourning for George H. W. Bush, so the markets were closed). Trump drove much of this confusion, after meeting with the leader of China last weekend to discuss trade. Adding to the confusion was the arrest of the leader of a giant Chinese corporation on Canadian soil at the request of the American Justice Department, and a weaker-than-expected jobs report today.

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It's Time For A New Election In North Carolina's Ninth District

[ Posted Thursday, December 6th, 2018 – 18:02 PST ]

In America, elections are almost never nullified. They are contested, they are recounted, they might even be challenged in court, but it's rare indeed for anyone to even propose that an election's entire result to be tossed out so that a new election can be held in its place. It's just not a common occurrence. In fact, it is so rare that I can't even remember when the last "do over" election of this nature even happened.

However, when the results of any individual election simply cannot be trusted with any degree of integrity, then there is no real recourse other than to void the results entirely and start all over again. It's a radical solution, but sometimes desperate times call for such desperate measures. And the situation in North Carolina's Ninth Congressional District must now be seen as so damaged that there really can only be one acceptable repair, and that is to start all over.

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We Need A Voters' Bill Of Rights

[ Posted Wednesday, December 5th, 2018 – 17:16 PST ]

As time goes on, America seems to be taking a big step backwards on the long road toward voting equality for all. This election cycle saw a gubernatorial candidate refuse to recuse himself from overseeing the elections process in his current job; what appears to be a blatant effort to throw an election in North Carolina by a shady Republican operative; and the usual GOP bag of tricks when it comes to voter roll purges, long polling lines, and challenging in various ways the outcomes they didn't like. In short, if we're not already there, we're certainly approaching a crisis in confidence over the way Americans vote and the way those votes are counted.

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Friday Talking Points -- Walking And Chewing Gum

[ Posted Friday, November 30th, 2018 – 17:42 PST ]

Welcome back to Friday Talking Points, after our one-week Thanksgiving break! Hope everyone had a great holiday and didn't eat too much turkey.

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...Nor Excessive Fines Imposed...

[ Posted Wednesday, November 28th, 2018 – 17:27 PST ]

The Supreme Court may be about to seriously rein in the practice of state and local governments essentially committing highway robbery. This practice is known as "asset forfeiture," and I've written extensively about it in the past. But a new court challenge could if not end then at least severely curtail the practice at the state and local level.

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What's Good For GM Is Not Good For Trump

[ Posted Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 – 18:06 PST ]

General Motors just announced several plant closures and over ten thousand layoffs, in a bid to restructure their operations for the future. Americans aren't buying so many sedans any more, so GM is shuttering some plants that make these cars. This includes a plant in Ohio, after President Trump personally promised workers that no factories would be shutting down there. Trump even went further, by personally advising Ohio workers not to sell their houses and move since manufacturing jobs would be such solid future prospects. So the GM announcement came as a rather personal blow to the president.

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Friday Talking Points -- Trump's Temper Tantrum

[ Posted Friday, November 16th, 2018 – 18:43 PST ]

Most Americans, not being political wonks, have largely moved on from the midterm election results. The mainstream media has also largely been ignoring the still-developing story, for two reasons: (1) they really kind of blew it on Election Night, uniformly coming to the wrong conclusion very early in the evening ("the blue wave is not appearing") and so they're now avoiding having to correct their misinterpretation; and (2) there's a recount in Florida again! Woo hoo! Break out the video clips of that poor myopic cross-eyed guy with the magnifying glass -- that's always fun to run, right?

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Ranked-Choice Voting Put To The Test In Maine

[ Posted Thursday, November 15th, 2018 – 18:00 PST ]

You'll have to forgive me for writing yet another column on the midterm elections, but Maine has just made a bit of electoral history, and judging from conversations I've had recently with friends, their new voting system is not yet fully understood by all. Which is a shame, because it certainly is an innovation in the way people cast their votes. The jury's still really out on whether it is a good innovation or not, but it certainly is a different way of doing the business of counting votes.

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