Friday, June 27, 2014

Last Call For Puckett, We'll Do It Live

The story of Democrat turned "What's in it for me?" douchebag Phil Puckett, the Virginia state Senator who resigned to take a cushy job with the GOP-led state tobacco regulatory commission, giving control of the state Senate to the Republicans as a result, just got a whole lot more interesting (and possibly very, very criminal).

The head of the state tobacco commission warned that the panel would create the appearance of “manipulating” power in the Virginia Senate if it announced that it was hiring Sen. Phillip P. Puckett on the same day he gave up his seat, according to e-mails released Thursday
Tim Pfohl, interim executive director of the commission, said in a June 5 e-mail to Puckett, a Democrat from rural Russell County, that he had begged Del. Terry G. Kilgore (R-Scott) to delay making it known that Puckett was getting a top staff job with the commission. Kilgore is chairman of the commission. 
“Phillip: Terry spoke to us today about announcing your role w/ the Commission in conjunction with what he said is your intention to announce your Senate plans tomorrow,” Pfohl wrote. “I implored him to ‘decouple’ those announcements for the sake of the appearance of the Commission manipulating the Senate balance of power and starting WW3 w/ the Governor’s administration.” 
Pfohl went on to say that the commission’s executive committee still planned to meet a few days later to give Puckett the job. 
I mention all this so you know what’s being planned on our end to give this the most defensible appearance of due process,” Pfohl added.

In other words, this is clearly a case where Puckett was rewarded with the commissioner's job for resigning his state Senate seat and giving power to the GOP, so obvious that that the commission's interim head honcho emailed people to beg them to try to make the rotten deal not appear so bloody obvious.

These emails also prove that the deal was in the works before Puckett resigned, which is a huge problem.  In no way was this a spontaneous act, but a deliberate thumb, hand, arm, shoulder and body on holding down the scale to tip it in favor of the crooked Virginia GOP.

Oh, but it gets worse.

The e-mail messages indicated that the commission was creating the post especially for Puckett, who was asked to help come up with his own job description. The position was to come with state employee benefits, a cell phone and possibly a car, according to the e-mails. The salary was not specified.

And remember, all of this was done in order to give Virginia Republicans the window they needed in order to pass a budget that strips social programs and Affordable Care Act Medicaid expansions from needy Virginians.  Puckett's ridiculously unethical and illegal deal was the price, and the ones paying it are thousands of Virginians who will not get health coverage as a result.

All this just to screw over poor people.  The American way, right?  Or at least, the Republican way.

Even More GOP Minority Outreach, Post-McDaniel Edition

Mississippi GOP Senate "candidate" Chris McDaniel will take his "graceful concession" to Sen. Thad Cochran in Tuesday's primary runoff and shove it right up America's ass

We haven’t conceded and we’re not going to concede right now. We’re going to investigate. 
Naturally sometimes it’s difficult to contest an election, obviously, but we do know that 35,000 Democrats crossed over. And we know many of those Democrats did vote in the Democratic primary just three weeks ago which makes it illegal. 
We likewise know that we have a statute, a law in our state that says you cannot participate in a primary unless you intend to support that candidate. And we know good and well that these 35,000 democrats have no intention to do that. They’ll be voting for Travis Childers in November. We know that. They know that. And so that makes their actions illegal. 
So we’re going to be fighting this.

It's illegal because McDaniel "knows" it was illegal.  He can't actually prove anything, but who gives a damn when there's lynching to be done?  Justin Baragona at PoliticusUSA:

A few points need to be made. First, the Mississippi law about voters needing to support the candidates they vote for in primaries has already been ruled unenforceable by a federal appeals court. Therefore, McDaniel doesn’t have a leg to stand on if he tries to file a lawsuit centered on that law. That particular law is impossibly vague, especially since Mississippi doesn’t have party registration. There is absolutely no way you can find out if a voter stuck with a candidate in the general election. This could hardly even be called a law. It is more of an honor system.

As far as voters participating in the Democratic Senate primary and then this Republican primary runoff, McDaniel may appear to have a somewhat valid argument. In this instance, voter rolls from the Democratic primary can be compared with log sheets from the runoff. It would seem possible that some votes could be tossed aside. However, I wouldn’t bet on a huge amount. The Democratic primary had a very low turnout, especially when compared to the Republican primary. In the initial Republican primary, 313,000+ votes were cast, compared to just 75,000+ votes in the Democratic primary. The runoff pulled in an even higher number, as over 372,000 votes were counted.

McDaniel is assuming that a very large portion of the Democratic voters that participated in the runoff also voted in their own primary a few weeks ago, while conveniently ignoring the fact that the vast majority of Democrats in the state did not take part in that primary. My feeling is, even if the state decides to check and compare the voter rolls between the Democratic primary and Republican runoff, they’ll find very little crossover. And, even if they did, they can’t simply make the assumption that every one of these votes was for Cochran. Once again, McDaniel is left with no recourse even if he tries to go down this road.

But go down that road McDaniel and his supporters will, and they don't care who gets hurt along the way.

The Mississippi Tea Party President says they've found evidence that nearly 800 voters crossed over in Tuesday's runoff election that should not have been allowed to vote Republican.

"We have some evidence that we are concerned about," explained president Laura Van Overschelde. "We're here to ensure the integrity of the electoral process. There's a great concern over a great many of the irregularities and enrolling of voters."

However, Hinds County GOP Chairman Pete Perry says there are some precincts where he knows workers marked the wrong column and corrected them the day of the election. He believes that could account for at least 200 of those being cited by the Tea Party.

I'm sure McDaniel has fevered glory dreams of the US Supreme Court magically declaring him the winner, right after declaring Democrats are no longer Americans, but hey, let's keep this guy on TV as long as possible blaming black people for his loss.

Ted Cruz's Latest Windmill Tilt-A-Whirl

GOP Sen. Ted Cruz is back to threatening to impeach Attorney General Eric Holder if he doesn't appoint a special prosecutor over the IRS's missing emails.

Attorney General Eric Holder must appoint a special prosecutor to investigate IRS targeting of conservative groups or expect to face impeachment proceedings, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said on the chamber floor Thursday.

“When an Attorney General mocks the rule of law, when an Attorney General corrupts the Department of Justice by conducting a nakedly partisan investigation to cover up political wrongdoing that conduct by any reasonable measure constitutes high crimes and misdemeanors,” said Cruz. “Attorney General Eric Holder has the opportunity to do the right thing. He could appoint a special prosecutor with meaningful independence who is not a major Obama donor.”

The donor Cruz is referring to is Justice Department prosecutor Barbara Bosserman, who has given $6,750 to the Democratic Party and President Obama over the past ten years, according to the Washington Post. Bosserman has been chosen to lead the Justice Department probe into the IRS.

Cruz and other conservatives are dismayed that the Justice Department has yet to indict anyone 13 months after the IRS admitted that it targeted nonprofit political advocacy groups with the terms “tea party” or “patriot” in their names from 2010 to 2012.

That's actually not true, as more liberal groups were targeted than conservative ones, because the IRS was going after a number of "advocacy groups" on both sides basically using unlimited anonymous funds to run unlimited political ads. 

"Republicans have yet to prove any laws were broken after 13 months" is the problem, after wasting taxpayer money with piles of investigations in the House.  Impeachment will fail of course, but the longer Ted Cruz is in the news reminding people about his nonsense with the shutdown, the better.


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