Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Last Call

The GOP minority outreach plan continues, and the Republicans' "secret weapon" this time around is Raffi Williams, son of FOX pundit Juan Williams.  Evan McMorris-Santoro:

A significant part of the Republican Party's future rests on the shoulders of Raffi Williams, the 24 year-old son of Fox News' Juan Williams.

Not long after RNC chair Reince Priebus admitted his party has been unable to appeal to the youth and minorities, Raffi Williams got the job of selling the GOP to youth outlets and the African American press as a Deputy Press Secretary.

He admits making young and black voters consider voting Republican is a tall order. But Williams told BuzzFeed a visible African American media outreach program can reap political rewards for the GOP beyond the black vote.

"I think it's a slow process. If you expect us to get a ridiculous amount of African Americans in the next election, that's not going to happen probably," he said. "But we can start to make inroads, and the more inclusive we are as a party the better optics we get to other demographics as well — not just African Americans — and that helps us in the long run." 

What Raffi Williams and the rest of these go-getters haven't figured out yet is that the problem isn't reaching African-Americans, Latinos, LGBT Americans, and other minority groups, it's the people in the GOP currently reaching us with messages that we're distinctly second-class and not worth the GOP's time, or worse, that we're enemies of America.

You have Raffi Williams out here wanting to make the case that Republicans are good for minorities, and yet we can't hear your message over the volume of hate coming from the people up top making the decisions.  All we think Republicans want to do is attack the nation's first minority President as lazy, stupid, and evil.  Republicans want to undo everything he's done, even when they agreed with it up until the point he said "this idea from Republicans is a good one and I want to incorporate it into this legislation."

In other words, until Republicans show me they have a goal other than being assholes who only care about the one percent, who want to make it more difficult to vote, more difficult to get and keep a job that pays enough to keep you out of poverty, and who assume all black people are lazy, shiftless bastards who need to be uplifted by your morally and intellectually superiority, I really don't give a damn who delivers your message.

Have a seat, Raffi.  You need to be working on your own broken party before you even think about outreach to anyone else.  Your messenger is meaningless until you change the message.

The GOP Voter Suppression Plan Continues

Add Arkansas to the list of red states taking the right to vote away from people for the crime of being Democrats, to battle "voter fraud" that doesn't exist.

Arkansas legislators passed a law Monday requiring voters to show photo identification at the polls, overriding Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe's veto of the bill, which he called an expensive solution to a non-existent problem.

The Republican-led state House voted 52-45, largely along party lines, to complete an override that started in the GOP-controlled Senate on a 21-12 vote last week. Only a simple majority was needed in each chamber.

"We are trying to protect the integrity of one of the most fundamental rights we have here in America," said state Rep. Stephen Meeks, a Republican from Greenbrier and the bill's House sponsor. House Speaker Davy Carter, a Cabot Republican who did not vote for the bill when it passed the House last month, supported the override.

Sure they are.  The fact that it will "stop in-person voter fraud" which never happens, but it will also prevent thousands of mostly minority, poor, elderly, and college-age students from actually voting, all groups that vote Democratic, is just an unintended consequence that just happens to be enacted every single time by Republican legislatures across the country.  It's just a staggering coincidence, I'm sure.

Republicans insist on spending millions to "protect the integrity of the vote" and to spare no taxpayer expense to stop a non-existent "epidemic" of in-person voting fraud, but then argue that early voting, expanded in-person absentee ballot voting, and weekend voting especially the Sunday before the election is an expense that no state can afford because it's wasteful government spending.  

Creating additional hoops to jump through to vote, vital government function.  People actually voting, wasteful government spending.  There's your modern GOP at the state level, folks.

Study For Your Supper

Tennessee Republicans move forward with legislation to strip welfare money from kids who don't get good enough grades:

Two Tennessee lawmakers introduced legislation that would tie welfare assistance under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program to the educational performance of students who benefit from it, and the legislation was approved by committees in both the state House and Senate last week.

Under the legislation brought by two Republicans, a student who doesn’t not make “satisfactory progress” in school would cost his or her family up to 30 percent of its welfare assistance, the Knoxville News and Sentinel reported.

Now, it seems amending the bill to allow exceptions for kids with disabilities is enough of a sop in order to allow the state to punish the rest of the poor kids, who must be poor because their parents are lazy.  Here's the fun part:

House Democratic Caucus Chairman Mike Turner of Nashville said parents of children with “undiagnosed learning disabilities” could suffer because of the bill and, even if a child is performing poorly in school, “the kid still has to eat.”

Turner also said the bill apparently does not apply to home-schooled children and, “I guess a person who wants to get around this just can say ‘I’m home schooling my children’.”

Surprise!   Of course the bill doesn't apply to home-schooled kids.  We know they have involved non-lazy parents because they're home-schooled!  The fact that the overwhelming majority of home-schooled families vote GOP has nothing to do with it.

Oopsie.  Still, the point of the bill is to punish "those people" for being poor, so they stop being lazy working at their $8 an hour job 40 hours a week and get a second job like a real American, so they'll have even less time at home to become involved with their kid's schoolwork.  That'll teach em to be poor people!


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