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Archive of Articles in the "Politicians" Category

Friday Talking Points -- Democrats' Closing Midterm Argument

[ Posted Friday, October 19th, 2018 – 17:18 PDT ]

As usual, there was all sorts of idiocy in the political news last week. But, for a change, we're only going to skim lightly over most of it in an abbreviated weekly roundup, because we've got a special talking points section at the end, where we try our hand at writing a "closing argument" speech for all Democratic congressional candidates to consider using. So there's that to look forward to. Before that, though, let's take a very quick look at the week that was.

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Could California Republicans Help Elect A Liberal?

[ Posted Thursday, October 18th, 2018 – 17:11 PDT ]

Admittedly, it must be tough to be a California Republican these days. Although not on the official endangered species list, they are still definitely a dying breed. The state's large coastal urban population tilts the state deep blue, so the rural parts of the state are becoming increasingly irrelevant to the state's politics, because they're so outnumbered. The only Republican elected statewide in the past few decades wasn't even really a Republican, he was just an actor playing one for votes. Remember when the rest of the country laughed at California for electing a complete novice to the highest state office solely because of name recognition and the entertainment factor? Seems almost prophetic, these days. The state's "top-two jungle primary" has only made things worse, since now Republicans don't even have their own candidates on the ballot in many races on Election Day. Such is the case this year for the race for a U.S. Senate seat, because Dianne Feinstein will be facing off against fellow Democrat Kevin De León in November. Which got me thinking about a bizarre confluence of events that could actually see Republican voters propel the more liberal candidate into office.

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O, Canada!

[ Posted Wednesday, October 17th, 2018 – 16:31 PDT ]

Our neighbor to the north made some big news today, as Canada is now the largest country in the world where marijuana can be freely bought, sold, possessed, grown, and used by all of its adult citizens. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has now made good on one of his big campaign promises, and today Canadians from coast to coast began legally purchasing recreational marijuana for the first time since it was outlawed.

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Elizabeth Warren Calls Trump's Bluff; Trump Breaks Million-Dollar Promise

[ Posted Monday, October 15th, 2018 – 17:08 PDT ]

It's hard to see today as anything short of the unofficial launch of the 2020 presidential contest, at least on the Democratic side of the aisle. That may be either exciting or frightening (depending on your view of endless political campaigning in general), but either way it's kind of hard to deny. Because Senator Elizabeth Warren -- again, unofficially -- just threw her hat in the presidential ring, in a big way. She did so by calling President Donald Trump's bluff, which has so far resulted in yet another Trump million-dollar promise being broken.

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Friday Talking Points -- "Civil" War

[ Posted Friday, October 12th, 2018 – 17:35 PDT ]

There's a debate going on right now among the chattering classes in Washington over whether Democrats should be "civil" or, alternatively, whether they should "kick" back at their opponents. No, really. The hilariousness of such a genteel debate seems to have escaped everyone engaging in it, apparently. Because it is pretty funny, when you consider the actual facts. Which show that Republicans completely abandoned civility altogether, right about the same time they started supporting Donald Trump -- and things have (if it's even possible) now gotten even worse in the midterm campaigns. So all they're really doing is attempting to hold Democrats to a standard they don't even pretend to hew to themselves anymore (after decades of being the moralizing, finger-wagging party, it bears mentioning).

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Mob Mentality

[ Posted Wednesday, October 10th, 2018 – 16:48 PDT ]

The word "mob" was first coined circa 1690 A.D., as a shortening of a Latin phrase: "mobile vulgus." The Latin translates roughly as "the moveable common people," although "movable" could have meant "fickle in their opinions" as much as it could have meant actual physical motion. The most succinct translation into English I've seen is "moveable party." This points out the political nature of the term's origins and its continued usage over the centuries.

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One Month To Go

[ Posted Monday, October 8th, 2018 – 17:05 PDT ]

Four weeks from tomorrow, America will vote in the 2018 midterm congressional elections. We're officially in the homestretch now, in other words. And even with all the recent political events, things stand pretty much how they have all year -- Democrats are still favored to take control of the House of Representatives, but Republicans are still favored to retain control of the Senate. The political pundits right now are focusing too tightly on possible effects of the Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court fight, but the bigger picture hasn't really shifted all that much.

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Friday Talking Points -- Kavanaugh Fight Finally Ends

[ Posted Friday, October 5th, 2018 – 16:46 PDT ]

Brett Kavanaugh is going to be confirmed to the Supreme Court tomorrow. That was the breaking news this afternoon, as Senators Jeff Flake, Susan Collins, and Democrat Joe Manchin all indicated that they're going to vote in favor of Kavanaugh's confirmation. Republican Lisa Murkowski had briefly given rise to hope on the Democratic side when she announced she'll be voting against confirmation, but as things stand now Vice President Mike Pence won't even be required to break a tie, because tomorrow (if every senator votes how they now say they will) the total will be 51 votes for confirmation to 49 against.

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Jeff Flake's Delusional Presidential Dreams

[ Posted Thursday, October 4th, 2018 – 17:10 PDT ]

It has long been said that when every single U.S. senator looks in the mirror each morning, he or she sees a U.S. president looking back at them. In reality, making the leap from the Senate to the White House is actually quite rare in modern American history -- before Barack Obama managed the feat in 2008, it hadn't happened since John F. Kennedy's win in 1960. But that doesn't really matter to the senators, as they all still see themselves as valid contenders for the presidency anyway, each and every morning.

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Jeff Bezos Does The Right Thing

[ Posted Wednesday, October 3rd, 2018 – 16:34 PDT ]

We could all use a dose of good news right about now, which is why it was heartening to hear that the leader of Amazon just announced he would be raising his employees' pay so that nobody working for his company will make less than $15 an hour. That's good news for hundreds of thousands of American families, and it deserves to be praised and celebrated. But the lion's share of the thanks really should go to a politician, because if Senator Bernie Sanders hadn't publicly shamed Amazon's Jeff Bezos, this probably never would have happened.

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