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Justice Department Set To Give Married Same-Sex Couples Equal Protection Under Federal Law.


 

By Jueseppi B.

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From The Washington Post:

 

Justice Department to give married same-sex couples equal protection

 

By , Saturday, February 8

 

The Justice Department on Monday will instruct all of its employees across the country, for the first time, to give lawful same-sex marriages sweeping equal protection under the law in every program it administers, from courthouse proceedings to prison visits to the compensation of surviving spouses of public safety officers.

 

In a new policy memo, the department will spell out the rights of same-sex couples, including the right to decline to give testimony that might incriminate their spouses, even if their marriages are not recognized in the state where the couple lives.

 

Under the Justice policy, federal inmates in same-sex marriages will also be entitled to the same rights and privileges as inmates in opposite-sex marriages, including visitation by a spouse, escorted trips to attend a spouse’s funeral, correspondence with a spouse, and compassionate release or reduction in sentence based on the incapacitation of an inmate’s spouse.

 

In addition, an inmate in a same-sex marriage can be furloughed to be present during a crisis involving a spouse. In bankruptcy cases, same-sex married couples will be eligible to file for bankruptcy jointly. Domestic support obligations will include debts, such as alimony, owed to a former same-sex spouse. Certain debts to same-sex spouses or former spouses should be excepted from discharge.

 

“This means that, in every courthouse, in every proceeding, and in every place where a member of the Department of Justice stands on behalf of the United States — they will strive to ensure that same-sex marriages receive the same privileges, protections, and rights as opposite-sex marriages under federal law,” Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. is expected to say in a speech Saturday night at the Human Rights Campaign’s Greater New York Gala at the Waldorf Astoria in New York, where he will announce the new policy.

 

“This landmark announcement will change the lives of countless committed gay and lesbian couples for the better,” Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin said in a statement. “While the immediate effect of these policy decisions is that all married gay couples will be treated equally under the law, the long-term effects are more profound. Today, our nation moves closer toward its ideals of equality and fairness for all.”

 

The department’s new policy comes three years after the Justice Department said it would not defend cases in court involving the Defense of Marriage Actanymore. Last year, the Supreme Court ruled that DOMA was unconstitutional.

 

The ruling “marked a major victory for the cause of equal protection under U.S. law, and a significant step forward for committed and loving couples throughout the country,” Holder said Tuesday in Sweden, addressing the Swedish parliament.

 

In January, Holder intervened in the legal battle over gay marriage in Utahand announced that the more than 1,300 same-sex marriages that took place there in December and January are considered legal under federal law, even though a step by the Supreme Court cast doubt on the marriages and state officials would not recognize those unions.

 

The Justice Department has already approved policy changes by other federal agencies to extend federal benefits to same-sex married couples.

 

Last summer, the Office of Personnel Management announced that federal employees in same-sex marriages could apply for health, dental, life, long-term care and retirement benefits. The Department of Health and Human Services said that legally married same-sex seniors on Medicare would be eligible for equal benefits and joint placement in nursing homes around the country.

 

The Social Security Administration will pay death benefits to survivors of a same-sex marriage. The Department of Homeland Security will treat same-sex spouses equally for the purposes of obtaining a green card if the spouse is a foreign national. And the Internal Revenue Service has begun treating same-sex marriages equally for tax-filing purposes.

 

“We are, right now, in the middle of marking a number of 50-year anniversaries of key milestones in the Civil Rights Movement,” Holder will say, according to advance remarks provided by the Justice Department. “And yet, as all-important as the fight against racial discrimination was then, and remains today, know this: my commitment to confronting discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity runs just as deep.”

 

Holder made a similar statement in favor of expanding LGBT rights in Sweden.

 

Justice Dept. to extend benefits to same-sex couples

Justice Dept. to extend benefits to same-sex couples

 

The new policy will have “important, real-world implications for same-sex married couples that interact with the criminal justice system,” Holder said.

 

The Justice Department will also recognize same-sex couples in a number of key benefits programs it administers, such as the Radiation Exposure Compensation Program and the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund and the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits Program, which provides death benefits and educational benefits to surviving spouses of public safety officers.

 

“This program is one way that we, as a country, stand by the families of those who put themselves in harm’s way to keep our communities safe and we must never do that selectively,” Holder will say. “When any law enforcement officer falls in the line of duty or is gravely injured, the federal government should stand by that hero’s spouse — no matter whether that spouse is straight or gay.”

 

As he did earlier this week in Sweden, Holder will compare the struggle for LGBT equality to the 1960s civil rights movement for African Americans.

 

“The gains made during that period continue to be a source of great pride — not just for our country, but also for the building where I work,” Holder said. “Then, as now, nothing less than our country’s commitment to the notion of equal protection under the law was on the line. And so the Justice Department’s role in confronting discrimination must be as aggressive today as it was in Robert Kennedy’s time. As Attorney General, I will not let this Department be simply a bystander during this important moment in history.”

 

Thank you The Washington Post.

 

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A Brand New Day™: Weekly Address. White House Blog Updates.


 

By Jueseppi B.

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Peter Welsch
Peter Welsch

February 01, 2014
06:00 AM EST

 

In his weekly address, President Obama discussed the goals he laid out in the State of the Union address to expand opportunity for all so that every American can get ahead and have a shot at creating a better life for their kids.

 

 

 

VIDEO MENSAJE DE LA CASA BLANCA: Temas del Estado de la Unión de 2014

February 01, 2014 | 2:43 |Public Domain

 

En el mensaje de esta semana, la Directora de los Medios Hispanos Katherine Vargas habló sobre los temas del Estado de la Unión del martes. El Presidente presentó un conjunto de propuestas prácticas y concretas para hacer crecer la economía, fortalecer la clase media, y para empoderar a todas las personas que desean ser parte de la clase media.

 

 

 

Weekly Address: Restoring Opportunity for All

WASHINGTON, DC— In this week’s address, the President discussed the goals he laid out in the State of the Union address to expand opportunity for all so that every American can get ahead and have a shot at creating a better life for their kids.

 

The audio of the address and video of the address will be available online atwww.whitehouse.gov at 6:00 a.m. ET, Saturday, February 1, 2014.

 

Remarks of President Barack Obama
Weekly Address
The White House
February 1, 2014

 

Hi, everybody.

 

This week, I delivered my State of the Union Address. Today, here’s the three-minute version.

 

After four years of economic growth with eight million new private sector jobs, our unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been in more than five years.  And with the economy speeding up, companies say they intend to hire more people this year.

 

But while those at the top are doing better than ever, average wages have barely budged.  Inequality has deepened.  Too many Americans are working harder and harder just to get by.  And too many still aren’t working at all.

 

Our job is to reverse those trends.  It’s time to restore opportunity for all people – the idea that no matter who you are, if you work hard and live up to your responsibilities, you can make it if you try.

 

The opportunity agenda I laid out on Tuesday has four parts. This week, I took them on the road.

 

Job one is more new jobs: jobs in construction and manufacturing, jobs in innovation and energy.

 

In Wisconsin, I talked with plant workers at GE about part two: training more Americans with the skills to fill those new jobs.

 

In Tennessee, I talked with students about part three: guaranteeing every child access to a world-class education, from early childhood, through college, and right into a career.

 

And with steelworkers in Pittsburgh, and retail workers in Maryland, I laid out part four: making sure hard work pays off for men and women, with wages you can live on, savings you can retire on, and health insurance that’s there for you when you need it.

 

These ideas will strengthen the middle class and help more people work their way into the middle class.  Some of them will require Congress.  But wherever I can take steps to expand opportunity for more families on my own, I will.  I’m going to ask business leaders, education leaders, and philanthropic leaders to partner with us to advance these goals.

 

And every single day, I’m going to fight for these priorities – to shift the odds back in favor of more working and middle-class Americans, and to keep America a place where you can always make it if you try.

 

Thanks.  Have a great weekend.  And enjoy the Super Bowl.

 

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January 31st 2014: Photo of the Day

 

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden provide encouragement to Erick Varela, who was about to introduce the President, prior to an event to outline new efforts to help the long-term unemployed, in the Green Room of the White House, Jan. 31, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden provide encouragement to Erick Varela, who was about to introduce the President, prior to an event to outline new efforts to help the long-term unemployed, in the Green Room of the White House, Jan. 31, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

 

White House Schedule – Week Of February 3rd to 6th 2014

 

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On Monday, the President will attend meetings at the White House.

 

On Tuesday, the President will deliver remarks on education. In the evening, the President will host the House Democratic Caucus for a roundtable and reception at the White House. The Vice President will also attend.

 

On Wednesday, the President will deliver remarks at the Senate Democratic Issues Conference.

 

On Thursday, the President will deliver remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast. The Vice President and the First Lady will also attend. Later, the President will meet with President Martelly of Haiti at the White House.

 

Details about Friday’s schedule will be released as they become available.

 

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Proud To Be

 

Published on Jan 27, 2014

Watch the #BigGame commercial the NFL would never air. Get involved by contacting the Washington Professional Football Team, the NFL and the Washington Post.

 

 

 

President Obama Gets Asked “How Are You?” in a Google+ Hangout

January 31, 2014 | 4:23 |Public Domain

 

During a virtual road trip on Google+, President Obama answered questions from people joining around the country. Including Rob in Portland who asked, “How are you?” Watch what President Obama had to say.

 

 

 

Press Briefing

January 31, 2014 | 47:43 |Public Domain

 

White House Press Briefings are conducted most weekdays from the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room in the West Wing.

 

 

 

Remarks by the President on Giving the Long-Term Unemployed a Fair Shot

January 31, 2014 | 20:58 |Public Domain

East Room.

 

 

 

West Wing Week 01/31/14 or “West Wing Week Turns 200!”

January 30, 2014 | 6:57 |Public Domain

 

This anniversary episode, hosted by the President, coincides with this year’s State of the Union Address. We’ll take you behind the scenes and on the road to speak directly with Americans like you about your lives and your families, and how together we can make sure that every American who works and studies hard has a real chance to get ahead.

 

 

Friday, January 24th

  • The President participated in pre-State of the Union preparations.

 

Tuesday, January 28th

 

Wednesday, January 29th

  • The President toured the Costco in Lanham, Marylandand spoke on the company’s leadership on employee pay.
  • Later that day, the President toured the US Steel Irvin Plant in West Mifflin, Pennsylvania to speak on making hard work pay off for every single American.

 

Thursday, January 30th

  • The President toured the General Electric gas engines factory and discussed the rebounding of the U.S. manufacturing sector in Waukesha, Wisconsin
  • Then, the President delivered a speech on educational opportunity at McGavock High School

 

 

The White House Blog

 

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Kori Schulman
Kori Schulman

January 31, 2014
07:51 PM EST

 

President Barack Obama participates in a virtual road trip across the country via Google+ President Barack Obama participates in a virtual road trip across the country via Google+ Hangouts to discuss the issues and policies that he laid out in the State of the Union address, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House. January 31, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

This afternoon, President Obama traveled (virtually) around the country via Google+ Hangout to answer questions about his State of the Union Address from everyday Americans. Starting on the West Coast and heading East, the President spoke to Sheila in San Francisco about immigration reform; Darnell, a fry cook at a fast-food company in Milwaukee, about raising the minimum wage; and Rob in Portland who simply asked, “how are you?

 

Watch the full video of the Hangout below, or over on YouTube. And be sure to follow the White House on Google+ for more opportunities to engage with the President and his administration.

 

 

 

New Transit Projects Connect Communities to Opportunities

 

Road Trip with President Obama

 

President Obama Extends Best Wishes for the Lunar New Year

 

President Obama Travels the Country to Promote Opportunity for All

 

Mad Men, Working Women, and Fair Pay

 

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President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden provide encouragement to Erick Varela, who was about to introduce the President, prior to an event to outline new efforts to help the long-term unemployed, in the Green Room of the White House, Jan. 31, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden provide encouragement to Erick Varela, who was about to introduce the President, prior to an event to outline new efforts to help the long-term unemployed, in the Green Room of the White House, Jan. 31, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Harriet Tubman born Araminta Harriet Ross; 1820 – March 10, 1913

Harriet Tubman born Araminta Harriet Ross; 1820 – March 10, 1913

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President Barack Obama signs a memorandum directing the federal government not to discriminate against those long-term unemployed workers in its own hiring practices

President Barack Obama signs a memorandum directing the federal government not to discriminate against those long-term unemployed workers in its own hiring practices

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Barack Hussein Obama Takes A Seat With “The Leads” Jake Tapper, For CNN.


 

By Jueseppi B.

0

 

 

 

CNN Big Moments in January Promo

 

Published on Jan 31, 2014

A promo featuring some highlights from the biggest interviews on CNN in January.

 

 

 

From CNN:

 

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CNN Exclusive: President Obama says he’s not recalibrating ambitions

 

By Jake Tapper and Chelsea J. Carter, CNN

 

Waukesha, Wisconsin (CNN) – Once, Barack Obama spoke of what he wanted for his presidency in terms of healing a nation divided. “This was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow, and our planet began to heal,” he said.

 

Today, Obama is talking about executive orders and executive actions — with a pen or phone — if a divided Congress won’t or can’t act on an agenda he laid out this week in his State of the Union address.

 

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But in an exclusive interview airing Friday on CNN, the President insists he has not recalibrated his ambitions.

 

“In no way are my expectations diminished or my ambitions diminished. But what is obviously true is we’ve got a divided government right now,” Obama said.

 

“The House Republicans, in particular, have had difficulty rallying around any agenda, much less mine. And in that kind of environment, what I don’t want is the American people to think that the only way for us to make big change is through legislation. We’ve all got to work together to continue to provide an opportunity for the next generation.”

 

Just days after his address to the nation, where he blended hopeful calls for a unified approach with declarations of presidential independence through executive orders, he sounded less than confident that Congress would come around.

 

“I think there are some issues where it’s going to be tough for them to move forward, and I am going to continue to reach out to them and say here are my best ideas, I want to hear yours,” the President said during the interview conducted in Waukesha, Wisconsin.

 

“But, as I said in the State of the Union, I can’t wait. And the American people, more importantly, cannot wait.”

 

Among the actions the President has taken is securing commitments from some of the nation’s largest companies for a plan to boost hiring of the long-term unemployed.

 

“What we have done is to gather together 300 companies, just to start with, including, some of the top 50 companies in the country, companies like Wal-mart, and Apple, Ford and others, to say let’s establish best practices,” Obama said.

 

“Because they’ve been unemployed … so long, folks are looking at that gap in the resume and they’re weeding them out before these folks even get a chance for an interview.”

 

In a wide-ranging interview that touched on everything from security at the Winter Olympics to the legalization of pot, here is what else the President had to say:

 

‘The imperial presidency?’

Since the President announced 12 areas where he would take executive actions — from raising the minimum wage for federal workers to creating a “starter” retirement savings account — that would bypass Congress, he has been under fire from a number of Congressional Republicans.

 

Sen. Ted Cruz described the actions as “the imperial presidency,” and House Republicans have threatened to rein in the President’s use of executive actions.

 

“I don’t think that’s very serious,” Obama said, adding that every president engages in executive actions.

 

CNN Exclusive: Obama’s diminished expectations?

 

Published on Jan 31, 2014

President Barack Obama gives his first interview since the State of the Union to CNN’s Jake Tapper.

 

 

He said his administration has been disciplined, taking such actions sparingly.

 

“We make sure we’re doing it within the authority that we have under the statute,” Obama said. “But I am not going to make an apology for saying that if I can help middle class families and folks who are working hard to try to get in the middle class do a little bit better, then I’m going to do it.”

 

“It’s a tough argument for the other side to make that not only are they willing to not do anything, but they also want me not to do anything.”

 

And that he said would only make the low opinion Americans have of Congress even lower.

 

 

‘Not going to prejudge

The one area where Obama says he believes he can work with Republicans is on the subject of immigration and the path to citizenship, a cornerstone issue for Democrats.

 

Obama: GOP made progress on immigration

 

Published on Jan 31, 2014

President Obama discusses immigration reform in an exclusive interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper.

 

 

 

The major sticking point between Democrats and Republicans will likely be whether or not the estimated 11 million undocumented workers in this country be given a path to citizenship. Obama refused to say whether he would veto a bill that did not contain such a provision; it is likely that House Republicans would not pass any bill that included a path to citizenship.

 

“I’m not going to prejudge what gets to my desk,” he said.

 

On Thursday, House Republicans released a one-page document that outlined what they called the standards of immigration reform, which calls for legal status, but not citizenship.

 

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“I think the principle that we don’t want two classes of people in America is a principle that a lot of people agree with, not just me and not just Democrats. But I am encouraged by what Speaker (John) Boehner has said,” Obama said.

 

“… I genuinely believe that Speaker Boehner and a number of House Republicans, folks like Paul Ryan, really do want to get a serious immigration reform bill done. And keep in mind that the Senate bill and the legislation that I’ve supported already calls for a very long process of earning citizenship. You had to pay fines. You had to learn English. You had to pay back taxes. And you had to go to the back of the line. And at the end of that, you could get citizenship.”

 

 

The marijuana experiment

When it was pointed out that the President’s remarks to The New Yorker magazine about marijuana — which he described as a bad habit but not any worse for a person than alcohol — contradict the administration’s official policy on marijuana, Obama stood by his views.

 

Exclusive: Obama talks about pot

 

Published on Jan 31, 2014

President Barack Obama talks to CNN’s Jake Tapper about marijuana legalization in an exclusive interview.

 

 

 

The President declined to say whether he would support removing marijuana as a “Schedule One” narcotic, a classification that includes heroin and ecstasy.

 

“I stand by my belief based on the scientific evidence that marijuana for casual users, individual users, is subject to abuse, just like alcohol is and should be treated as a public health problem and challenge,” he said.

 

Obama said his main concern is the criminalization of marijuana use.

 

“My concern is when you end up having very heavy criminal penalties for individual users that have been applied unevenly and, in some cases, with a racial disparity,” he said.

 

“I think that is a problem. We’re going to see what happens in the experiments in Colorado and Washington. The Department of Justice under Eric Holder has said that we are going to continue to enforce federal laws.”

 

At the same time, the President said the federal government doesn’t have the resources to police whether somebody is “smoking a joint on the corner.”

 

Rather, he said, the government was working to make sure that drug traffickers and the spillover of violence from the drug trade are not “creeping out of this experiment that is taking place.”

 

Obama offered what he described as a “cautionary note” for those who see legalization of marijuana as a panacea.

 

“I think they have to ask themselves some tough questions, too. Because if we start having a situation where big corporations with lots of resources and distribution and marketing arms are suddenly going out there, peddling marijuana, then the levels of abuse that may take place are going to be higher,” he said.

 

 

‘Win back confidence’

Obama did not suggest that he was disappointed with National Intelligence Director James Clapper for not being honest in his testimony before Congress last year about the mass surveillance programs that were revealed by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

 

Clapper later justified his untrue answer by saying it was the “least untruthful” one he could give. “Least untruthful” was not exactly a term Obama used on the campaign trail.

 

So did he have concerns about what Clapper said?

 

“I think that Jim Clapper himself would acknowledge, and has acknowledged, that he should have been more careful about how he responded,” Obama said.

 

“His concern was that he had a classified program that he couldn’t talk about, and he was in an open hearing in which he was asked, he was prompted to disclose a program, and so he felt he was caught between a rock and a hard place.”

 

The President acknowledged that the leaks, including details about the wide-ranging use of the surveillance programs, damaged the confidence of Americans as well as other nations.

 

“It’s going to take some time” to win back that confidence, he said. “It’s going to take some work, partly because the technology has just moved so quickly that discussions that needed to be had didn’t happen fast enough.”

 

 

Russia understands ‘the stakes here’

Neither the President, his wife nor his daughters will be attending the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

 

Asked what he would tell close friends who asked if they should attend amid security concerns, he said: “I’d tell them that I believe Sochi is safe and that there are always some risks in these large international gatherings.”

 

Obama on Olympics: I’d tell friends to go

 

Published on Jan 31, 2014

President Obama tells CNN’s Jake Tapper that the 2014 Olympics held in Sochi, Russia will be safe.

 

 

Much has been made about Russia’s ability to keep the athletes, coaches and spectators safe in a region where terror threats are very real.

 

“The Russian authorities understand the stakes here. They understand that there are potential threats that are out there, and we are coordinating with them,” he said.

 

“We’ve looked at their plans. I think we have a good sense of the security that they are putting in place to protect not only the athletes themselves, but also visitors there.”

 

In large settings like the Olympics, there is always some risk, Obama said.

 

“I don’t want to completely discount those. But as we’ve seen here in the United States, at the Boston Marathon, there were some risks if you have lone wolves or small cells of folks who are trying to do some damage,” he said.

 

That said, the President encouraged Americans traveling to the Olympics to register with the U.S. State Department and read the material posted on its web site about “prudent measures” people should take.

 

 

‘In harms way

During his State of the Union address, the President brought many to tears with a tribute to Army Sgt. 1st Class Cory Remsburg, a veteran who was on his 10th deployment when he was injured by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan.

 

Remsburg, who is now disabled, was sitting with first lady Michelle Obama when he was given a prolonged standing ovation.

 

Obama had met Remsburg before he deployed, before he was wounded.

 

As commander-in-chief, Obama said he meets what he describes as “amazing” service members who make up the country’s all-volunteer military.

 

“But it also means only 1% of the American people are in harms way, and their families are the ones bearing that burden,” Obama said. “Which means that when we make decisions about war, it is that much more important for lawmakers and the president to understand that there are consequences to this.”

 

Jake Tapper reported from Waukesha, Wisconsin; and Chelsea J. Carter wrote from Atlanta.

 

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Is It Racist To Want A “Caucasian Republican” In The White House?


 

By Jueseppi B.

Winter Storm

 

 

Let’s not be stupid America. Every single adult American knows the reason Americans disrespect and dislike, (that dislike is my way of being kind), this Black American President Of The United States Of America.

 

His skin color.

 

Joe Wurzelbacher, better known to many as Joe the Plumber, a 5th rate moron who gained his 15 seconds of fame in 2008, posted this on his web site and I thank Rev. Al Sharpton‘s Politics Nation for this piece….

 

From Politics Nation:

“If you wish the man living in the White House were a white Republican, you’re still not racist. That’s the claim being pushed by Joe Wurzelbacher, better known to many as Joe the Plumber after he rose to fame during the 2008 .

 

Since that moment in the political spotlight, Wurzelbacher has made a failed run for Congress and generally affiliated himself as a Republican, despite having claimed back in 2008 that he wasn’t. And now, in a piece posted to his website, he’s supporting the idea that wanting a “white Republican” back in the White House doesn’t make you racist.

 

“Admit it. You want a white Republican president again,” the post began. “Now before you start feeling like you’re a racist, understand you are not.”

 

Wurzelbacher didn’t pen those words himself, cross posting it under his name from the Black Sphere. The argument originally made by the author, Kevin Johnson, is that a white Republican president would be better in part because of policy, but also because “nobody is ever accused of being racist for disagreeing with white presidents.”

 

Thank you Rev Al and Politics Nation.

 

Joe the Plumber’s lack of intelligence aside, wishing a member of your race to the greatness of holding the office of President of The United States does not make you a racist.

 

Wishing a caucasian republican was back in the White House because you can’t handle the facts that a Black man, born of a father from Kenya, ( Barack Hussein Obama, Sr a Kenyan senior governmental economist), and a mother from Wichita, Kansas, (Stanley Ann Dunham  American anthropologist who specialized in economic anthropology and rural development), is actually doing a better job than any or the past 43 caucasian POTUS…..THAT does by all means make YOU a racist.

 

And YOU know this. Thats why you have to ask the question, “Is It Racist To Want A “Caucasian Republican” In The White House?”

 

Your racist caucasian ancestors stole, kidnapped and bartered millions of Africans from the Continent of Africa and shipped them to America in the belly of slave ships, killing 27 million in the process of crossing from Africa to America.

 

The Atlantic slave trade or transatlantic slave trade took place across the Atlantic Ocean from the 16th through to the 19th centuries. The vast majority of slaves transported to the New World were Africans from the central and western parts of the continent, sold by Africans to European slave traders who then transported them to North and South America. The numbers were so great that Africans who came by way of the slave trade became the most numerous Old-World immigrants in both North and South America before the late eighteenth century.

 

The problem, as with most idiots, you didn’t think ahead to what kidnapping these massive numbers of humans would do to your economy, lifestyle or the future of your brand new colonies. You couldn’t see past your noses. You were a lazy bunch of simpletons who stole your land from the Native American tribes you found in America, had no skill or knowledge how to work the stolen land to make it productive.

 

You were stuck.

 

You took a look around and discovered a land with people who were professionals at cultivating crops, building structures and cities, proficient at government and order. And you had the bright idea to make these Kings & Queens YOUR slaves.

 

Fast forward to 2008 and the emergence of Barack Hussein Obama and Michelle LaVaughn Obama.

 

Black Americans and ancestors of the very slaves you brought to The United States Of America.

 

See the irony? You can’t fix stupid.

 

Now you have come to recognize the stupidity of your hatred for a people far more advanced than your culture. The very people you forced into slavery and bondage to you, are now in charge and running the most powerful nation on the planet.

 

And that fact just tears your ass.

 

You can not stand the fact that a Black American was elected TWICE over your caucasian candidates,…. TWICE!!!

 

You are so pissed that a decedent of the very people YOU brought to The United States Of America, to be your slaves, to toil in your fields, cook your food, care for your children, bear your illegitimate children conceived through rape and sexual assaults, YOU are flabbergasted that this great race of humans have succeeded from slaves and rape vessels to President & First Lady. Attorney General. Director of The NSA…..and more.

 

You hate this turn of history so much that you will gladly see The United States Of America implode economically, financially and socially. You hate Our duly twice elected President Of The United States so much more than you love The United States Of America.

 

So to answer your question….Joe the Plumber….Is It Racist To Want A “Caucasian Republican” In The White House?

 

Yes It Is Racist.

 

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…huh….what….I don’t feel so good…

US President Barack Obama poses for photos with children and adult volunteers that are making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches at Martha's Table in Washington, DC, October 14, 2013, as the crisis over a US government shutdown and debt ceiling standoff continues into the third week of the shutdown. The non-profit organization helps low income and homeless families and many of the current volunteers are furloughed federal workers. AFP PHOTO / Saul LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

US President Barack Obama poses for photos with children and adult volunteers that are making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches at Martha’s Table in Washington, DC, October 14, 2013, as the crisis over a US government shutdown and debt ceiling standoff continues into the third week of the shutdown. The non-profit organization helps low income and homeless families and many of the current volunteers are furloughed federal workers. AFP PHOTO / Saul LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

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A Tuesday Potpourri


By Jueseppi B.

Potpourri

 

 

White House Tweets – August 13, 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

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FACT: Our deficit is down 37.6% through July—and on track to be the lowest in 5 years.

FACT: Our deficit is down 37.6% through July—and on track to be the lowest in 5 years.

 

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President Barack Hussein Obama and the First Lady Michelle LaVaughn Obama after enjoying dinner at The Sweet Life Cafe in Oak Bluffs,

 

 

 

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From The ACLU Blog:

 

 

How to Process Eric Holder’s Major Criminal Law Reform Speech

 

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By Laura W. Murphy, Director, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Vanita Gupta, Center for Justice
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Attorney General Eric Holder just called mass incarceration a moral and economic failure. He just outlined several major proposals that he says will help to ease major overcrowding in federal prisons. And he just suggested that federal prosecutors should avoid harsh mandatory minimums for certain low-level, non-violent drug offenses.

 

What should we make of the nation’s top prosecutor calling out the US for throwing too many people behind bars and challenging the failed war on drugs?

 

First off, we should acknowledge that this is a big deal! This is the first speech by any Attorney General calling for such massive criminal justice reforms. This is the first major address from the Obama Administration calling for action to end the mass incarceration crisis and reduce the racial disparities that plague our criminal justice system. In the same speech, the Attorney General committed to take on the school-to-prison pipeline and called on Congress to end the forced budget cuts that have decimated public defenders nationwide. This is great news.

 

The ACLU can proudly say that it has been deeply engaged in policy discussions with this administration, and Democrats and Republicans in Congress. Many of the reforms that we have long championed made it into the Attorney General’s speech, including:

  1. Developing guidelines to file fewer cases
  2. Directing a group of U.S. Attorneys to examine sentencing disparities and develop recommendations to address them
  3. Directing every U.S. Attorney to designate a Prevention and Reentry Coordinator
  4. Directing every DOJ component to consider whether regulations have collateral consequences that impair reentry
  5. Reducing mandatory minimum charging for low-level drug offenses
  6. Expanding eligibility for compassionate release; and
  7. Identifying and sharing best practices for diversion programs
  8. Calling into question zero tolerance policies and other policies that lead to the school to prison pipeline
  9. Challenging the legal community to make the promise of Gideon (right to counsel) more of a reality

 

The Attorney General has assured us that this is just the beginning, and he is taking on the bipartisan spirit that has produced state level reforms and has fueled the reduction in state prison populations.  These changes are long overdue because the federal prison population continues to grow and is 40% overcapacity. What’s worse, as a soon to be released ACLU report will show, a stunning 2,074 federal inmates are serving sentences of life without the possibility of parole for nonviolent crimes.

 

Mandatory minimums are partially to blame, leading to a situation in which billions of federal dollars currently go to incarcerating people convicted of low-level drug crimes. It’s great Holder is leading the way, but there is a limit to what he can accomplish by executive action alone. Congress needs to step up.  While the ACLU advocates for the repeal of all mandatory minimums, we strongly support bipartisan bills introduced by Senators Paul and Leahy and Senators Durbin and Lee to lessen the impact of mandatory minimums. We welcome the Attorney General’s support of this legislation and his urging of Congress to take swift action.

 

Too many people are caught in the criminal justice system who don’t need to be there; diverting those people out of the system makes sense economically and morally.

 

Many sick and elderly people can be safely released from prison and jail. The ACLU has issued numerous reports including this one, noting that approximately 13.5% of federal prisons are age 50 or older and calling on states and the federal government to make both short-term reforms and systemic changes to our country’s extreme sentencing practices.

 

People with criminal convictions have for too long been excluded from the economy. We should support Holder in calling for reforms to help people leaving the system, such as federal reentry coordinators and fewer collateral consequences facing people with criminal convictions (which would, in turn, make it easier for people with criminal convictions to obtain employment and housing).

 

But Holder’s proposal to avoid the harsh impact of mandatory minimums won’t accomplish everything because it is totally dependent on prosecutors’ following his lead. And this is not an example of executive overreach—federal prosecutors have always had the authority to avoid mandatory minimums. Whether they’ll exercise that discretion now remains to be seen. The Justice Department must be vigilant in tracking prosecutors’ charging practices to make sure they do the right thing.

 

These are welcome reforms, but more can be done to deepen their impact. We need to keep pushing the Justice Department to take action to eliminate racial disparities throughout the criminal justice system by updating the Ashcroft guidance on the use of race in federal law enforcement and to be even more outspoken with Members of Congress and the US Sentencing Commission in reducing the extreme sentencing laws that caused the mass incarceration crisis in the first place.

 

The ACLU will continue to work with the Justice Department to advance the types of reforms announced today, and we’re thrilled to see the Attorney General taking action in this area.

 

Thank you The ACLU Blog.

 

 

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From The Huffington Post:

 

Woman In Starbucks Drops Purse With Forgotten Gun Inside, Shoots Friend In The Leg: St. Pete Police

 

 

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A Florida woman accidentally shot her friend in the leg while waiting in line at a Starbucks on Saturday.

 

Police say Pamela Beck and Amie Peterson were getting coffee at the Tyrone Square Mall in St. Petersburg when Beck moved to set her bags down in order to pay for her drink.

 

Her purse “hit the ground hard,” St. Petersburg Police spokesman Mike Puetz told The Huffington Post, and a fully loaded .25 caliber semi-automatic handgun that was in the bottom of the handbag fired, striking Peterson above the knee.

 

Beck told investigators that her father had given her the gun about a year ago, and she hadn’t intended to bring it out in public. “She had forgotten about it,” Puetz said.

 

Beck does not have a concealed carry weapons permit, according to police, and the case has been referred to prosecutors.

 

Peterson was treated and released at a nearby trauma center. Other victims of recent accidental shootings have not been so fortunate: this month a three-year-old boy in Tampa fatally shot himself after finding his uncle’s gun in a bedroom, a 2-year-old Kentucky girl died after being accidentally shot by her brother, and a six-year-old girl was critically wounded outside Fort Lauderdale after her brother found a handgun.

 

Strangely, the incident isn’t the first time a gun has fired from inside a woman’s purse at Starbucks. The Associated Press reported a 2011 incident in which an underaged girl, encouraged to carry a gun by her father, was cited after it fired inside her purse and narrowly missed customers.

 

Recent figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show almost seven people are wounded by gunfire every 60 minutes in the U.S.

 

The Huffington Post.

 

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From ThinkProgress Logo:

 

Benghazi Conspiracists Launch Anti-Boehner Campaign Calling For Special Investigation

 

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BY HAYES BROWN ON AUGUST 12, 2013

 

Proponents of conspiracy theories about what the Obama administration is hiding about the 2012 attack on an American outpost in Benghazi have a new target in their sights: Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH).

 

“I don’t think at this point in time that it’s necessary,” Boehner told Fox News in May about the desire from some in his party to form a “special committee” in the House of Representatives to investigate the the attack on a U.S. diplomatic mission that killed four Americans, including Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens. That denial has true believers in President Obama’s malfeasance the night of the crisis — whatever that may be — turning on Boehner, despite the Speaker having reportedly made clear that he believes the Benghazi issue is a winner for the GOP.

 

The advocacy group Special Operations Speaks (SOS) recently announced that it is circulating a petition and would be placing billboards in Boehner’s congressional district calling out the Speaker for turning his back on the cause. “ONE MAN stands between the American people and the Watergate-style Select Committee needed to get to the truth and deliver justice. It’s not Barack Obama. It’s not Eric Holder. It’s not John Kerry either,” the email announces, “House Speaker John Boehner is the ONE MAN blocking a real investigation of Benghazi.”

 

“Boehner’s stonewalling is helping Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Susan Rice, and the rest of Obama’s corrupt administration get away with the deadliest scandal in American history,” the email goes on to read, referencing the various debunked theories about the supposed cover-up. According to SOS, by not taking action on forming a special committee, Boehner “continues to help hide the truth by denying a vote to form a Select Committee.”

 

Boehner is also receiving push back from rank-and-file members on his unwillingness to treat Benghazi as a Watergate-level scandal. Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA), the leading advocate for the creation of a special committee,filed a bill to do just that, signing up 163 co-sponsors onto H.Res. 36. Boehner has refused to allow that bill to hit the floor, however, leaving it for now in the House Rules Committee. In response, Rep. Steve Stockman (R-TX) in late July filed what’s known as a discharge petition to help get the bill out of committee and up for a vote, which SOS’s billboard urges Boehner’s constituents to call him in support of.

 

Stockton, Wolf, and Rep. Louis Gohmert (R-TX) all took part in an unveiling of a 60-foot long petition — at a press conference sponsored by SOS — calling on Boehner to act swiftly on the discharge petition, an event that Fox News heavily promoted. Fox News contributor and former Congressman Allen West (R-FL) has also weighed in on the matter, accusing Boehner and other Republicans of complicity in the alleged “cover-up” for not supporting the special committee. The Speaker’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the discharge petition and the billboards going up in Ohio.

 

The irony of the situation is that Boehner as recently as May had been described as being “obsessed” with Benghazi. Working closely with House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and other relevant committee chairs, Boehner has allowed for hearing after hearing into the incident, hoping to expose some form of Obama administration cover-up. To date, these fishing expeditions have come up empty, something that has not discouraged the conspiracy theorists.

 

Despite the current infighting over the issue, ordinary Americans still show no real urge to buy into the witch-hunt that the Republicans are trying to sell. House GOP aides have also grown weary of the attention many members are still according the incident. Despite that, the Republican National Committee continues to insist there’s a there there, releasing anew video attacking former Secretary of State — and possible 2016 presidential contender– Hillary Clinton for her role the night of the attack.

 

 

 

 

Thank you ThinkProgress Logo.

 

 

 

From Salon.com:

 

GOP’s clowns escape, show up all over national TV!

 

Republicans might want to hide their wingnuts from America — but Donald Trump and Steve King won’t let it happen

 

BY 

 

Donald Trump, Steve King, Louie Gohmert (Credit: Reuters/Steve Marcus/AP/Carolyn Kaster/Reuters/Joshua Roberts)

Donald Trump, Steve King, Louie Gohmert (Credit: Reuters/Steve Marcus/AP/Carolyn Kaster/Reuters/Joshua Roberts)

 

OK, Republicans, let’s put it all on the table and see what you’ve got. Now’s your moment. It’s August, of a Democratic president’s fifth year in office. His poll numbers are slumping accordingly. Look at the old bum; guy’s on vacation and can’t even make a putt. He’s waiting to be crushed. You’ve got one hot month worth of recess time to make it happen, to bring out the GOP “big dogs” and assume leadership of this country for the next couple of political cycles. It’s your time. Whatcha got for us?

 

Ha ha ha, oh. This is it, huh? Let’s look at the hot shot GOP politicians who appeared on this weekend’s political television shows to give voice to the party’s rebirth, new offensive, etc., etc.

 

• Rep. Louie Gohmert, the flat-out dumbest member of the congressional GOP. (At least based on the constant stream of dumb things he says at all times. Maybe he’s “smart in real life.”) Gohmert appeared on ABC’s “This Week” to defend the dying congressional plan to commit political suicide, by defunding Obamacare through a budget showdown this fall. He referred to President Obama’s suggestion that the GOP is trying to prevent 30 million people from getting healthcare coverage, by trying to block funding for the program that would give 30 million people healthcare coverage, as an “absolute, blatant lie.” How’s that? “Whether or not they have insurance under an exchange or not does not prevent people from getting healthcare.” Everyone already gets healthcare now so it’s fine, got it.

 

As for the Big Plan: “Gohmert said he supports efforts to shut down government unless Obamacare is defunded, saying there aren’t enough votes for it now but there may be after August recess.” Once the masses see Gohmert the logician on TV a few more times, see, they’ll be all for suicide.

 

 

• Rep. Steve King, the current holder of the highly coveted most racist member of the congressional GOP title. King went on NBC’s “Meet the Press” to discuss his well-publicized research in the field of dirty Mexicans’ calves. He insisted that his math on the Mexican valedictorian-to-drug-mule ratio still checks out, because, well, he’s seen some things in his time:

 

“My numbers have not been debunked,” he said. “I said valedictorians compared to people who would be legalized under the act that are drug smugglers coming across the border. My characterization was exclusively to drug smugglers.”

 

“What’s their number?” King asked of those who have condemned his remarks. “How many valedictorians do they suggest? And I’ll tell you, I’ve seen the drug smugglers.”

 

After GOP consultant Ana Navarro — who, like us, was wondering Jesus Christ why the shit is Steve King on “Meet the Press” – told King to get “therapy for his melon fixation,” King responded in perfect fashion by questioning her ability to understand the English language: “And if Ana understands the language, she should know that. I didn’t insult her or other Republicans.” You get-a what-a he say-ey, Ana?

 

• Donald Trump, an actual human-size cantaloupe, presumably snuck over the border inside one of those Mexicans’ calves some years ago. Trump sat down for an interview on ABC’s “This Week,” where he expanded his quest for BIRTH CERTIFICATES. After he “defended his previous accusation that President Obama may not actually have been born in the United States,” he laid the groundwork for the 2016 campaign, saying that he’ll never run against Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who is a mysterious Canadian Hispanic ghost, of some sort, it’s complicated.

 

During an interview for “This Week,” real estate mogul Donald Trump questioned whether Texas Sen. Ted Cruz would be eligible for the White House given his Canadian birth.

 

“If he was born in Canada, perhaps not.” Trump told ABC’s Jonathan Karl.

 

“I don’t know the circumstances.  I heard somebody told me he was born in Canada.  That’s really his thing,” he said.

 

“That’s really his thing.” See, he’s respectful nowadays.

 

Trump was in Iowa to give a speech to conservatives at the Family Leadership Summit. Think about that sentence for a minute.

 

The GOP is back, baby.

 

Jim Newell has covered politics for Wonkette and Gawker and is a contributor to the Guardian.MORE JIM NEWELL.

 

Thank you  Salon.com.

 

 

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