Monday, June 20, 2016

Last Call For Berned Out, Con't

If Bernie Sanders can't even win over his own Senate caucus members in the Democratic party, it's a hard sell to imagine that he'd be able to influence House Democrats either.  His quixotic antics and habit of stomping on others' toes has now won him the ire of the Congressional Black Caucus over the matter of super-delegates.

In a letter sent to both the Sanders and Hillary Clinton campaigns, the CBC is expressing its resolute opposition to two key reforms demanded by Sanders in the run-up to the Democratic convention: abolishing the party’s superdelegate system and opening Democratic primaries up to independents and Republicans.

"The Democratic Members of the Congressional Black Caucus recently voted unanimously to oppose any suggestion or idea to eliminate the category of Unpledged Delegate to the Democratic National Convention (aka Super Delegates) and the creation of uniform open primaries in all states," says the letter, which was obtained by POLITICO. "The Democratic Party benefits from the current system of unpledged delegates to the National Convention by virtue of rules that allow members of the House and Senate to be seated as a delegate without the burdensome necessity of competing against constituents for the honor of representing the state during the nominating process." 
The letter — which was also sent to Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz — follows a Wednesday CBC meeting where members discussed for over an hour the impact of eliminating superdelegates on the African-American community, according to CBC Chairman Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D-N.C.). 
"We passed a resolution in our caucus that we would vehemently oppose any change in the superdelegate system because members of the CBC might want to participate in the Democratic convention as delegates but if we would have to run for the delegate slot at the county level or state level or district level, we would be running against our constituents and we're not going to do that,” said Butterfield. “But we want to participate as delegates and that's why this superdelegates system was created in the beginning, so members would not have to run against their own constituents." 
The opposition to open primaries is based on the fear that allowing independent or Republican voters to participate in Democratic primaries would dilute minority voting strength in many places.

Now having said that, it's clear that the CBC is protecting its turf the way Bernie Sanders wants to protect his own interests, but it's clear that what Bernie wants to do is going to come at the expense of black voters.  Open primaries that include independents and Republicans are a bad idea, period, and super-delegates do give people in the party more of a voice.

On the gripping hand, the entire Sanders campaign has been one long episode of "We really don't understand why you people aren't voting for him" and the Sanders side hasn't really made any effort at asking, other than saying black voters in the South "don't count" or "are really conservatives" or "aren't informed voters".  It's annoying as hell.

So yes, expect the CBC to now be on the Bernie or Bust "corrupt establishment" list along with anyone else who is too impure to see the light of Saint Bernard.

(Also, good job Bernie, you made me defend the CBC, which actually is mildly obnoxious and only really concerned about its own political power.)

The Thomas Clowned Affair

I'm not buying the rumors that Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas wants to retire in 2017, and I think it's a load of crap.

Justice Clarence Thomas, a reliable conservative vote on the Supreme Court, is mulling retirement after the presidential election, according to court watchers.

Thomas, appointed by former President George H.W. Bush and approved by the Senate after a bitter confirmation, has been considering retirement for a while and never planned to stay until he died, they said. He likes to spend summers in his RV with his wife.

His retirement would have a substantial impact on control of the court. The next president is expected to immediately replace the seat opened by the death of conservative Justice Antonin Scalia, providing a one-vote edge in the court that is currently divided 4-4.

Should Thomas leave, that slight majority would continue if Donald Trump becomes president. If it's Hillary Clinton, then she would get the chance to flip two Republican seats, giving the liberals a 6-3 majority.

I think it's much more likely that Thomas is trying to motivate conservatives to vote for Trump using control of the Supreme Court as a cudgel, or that somebody in DC took Thomas's griping about missing Scalia and wanting to go tool around the country in an RV a lot more seriously than Thomas did, and they're the ones wanting to motivate Republicans to hold their nose and reach into the Trump septic tank in order to pull the lever for the GOP nominee in November.

Sadly, I don't think Thomas is going anywhere soon, but I can certainly see the prospect of Hillary Clinton forging a lasting 6-3 liberal majority (or 7-2 if that includes a replacement for Justice Kennedy) SCOTUS giving Republicans like Jazz Shaw at Hot Air nightmares for months.

This is what passes for GOTV if you're a conservative in 2016  I guess.  Some people figure that the fear of a woman in charge and her lasting legacy will get the Never Trumpers to vote, and they're probably right.

Very Loud Foghorns

The most disturbing aspect of Donald Trump's overtly racist campaign is just that: changing the boundaries of what is "acceptable" racism in America. SPending quite a bit of time screaming about the evils of "political correctness", we now have Trump wallowing directly in the mud in order to connect to the GOP lizard brain that wants those people punished. His latest proposal? America's cops need to be going after Muslims and others with more racial profiling.

Republican Donald Trump said on Sunday the United States should consider more racial profiling in law enforcement, after urging harsher policies following last week's mass shooting in Orlando.

"I think profiling is something that we're going to have to start thinking about as a country," Trump said when asked on CBS whether he supported more profiling of Muslims in America.

"You look at Israel and you look at others, and they do it and they do it successfully. And you know, I hate the concept of profiling, but we have to start using common sense," he added

Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, has drawn criticism from many in his party for his comments on American Muslims after the Orlando attack, in which a U.S. born Muslim man killed 49 people at a gay nightclub.

Trump also reiterated his support for more scrutiny of mosques, saying that could resemble a controversial New York City surveillance program that has been shut down.

"If you go to France right now, they're doing it in France. In fact, in some instances they're closing down mosques."

I mean the guy's already said he wants to round up and deport Muslims and Latinos, so why not start with racial profiling?  That's what counts as moderation for the guy, his move towards the general election is just constant police harassment of Muslims and shutting down mosques rather than deportation. See? Kinder, gentler racism already!

What a winning strategy.


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