Friday, March 13, 2015

Last Call For The Barbaric Yawp Of The Defeated

I'm not at all surprised to learn that opposition to same-sex marriage is growing in Kentucky as opponents are faced with the very real prospect that we're only a few months away from a Supreme Court decision that would nationalize it.

Showing a possible backlash to judicial decisions favoring gay marriage, the percentage of registered voters in Kentucky opposing it has increased to 57 percent this month compared to 50 percent in July
A Bluegrass Poll conducted March 3-8 shows that support for gay marriage also has dropped, from 37 percent to 33 percent. 
Chris Hartman, director of the Fairness Campaign, said the uptick in opposition probably reflects the fears of opponents that the U.S. Supreme Court is poised to declare same-sex marriage a constitutional right. 
"Opponents are grasping for ground as it is removed under them," Hartman said. 
The high court will hear oral arguments April 28 on gay marriage bans in Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee and Michigan. Thirty-seven states now allow gay nuptials, 26 of them by judicial decision.

That's a pretty significant spike, but I'm betting similar polls in other red states would show similar results, and a 5-10 point jump seems about right to me.  The prospect of actually having same-sex marriage as a reality where you live is starting to shake the bigots.  It's no longer a rhetorical exercise that will be reality "somewhere else", but imminent.

And judging from Alabama's legal tantrums over the subject, I think it's going to be a long, messy summer.

Even More Schock And Flaw

GOP Rep. Aaron Schock's pattern of abusing the power of his office for monetary gain is rapidly becoming a real problem for him and the Republican Party.

Schock traveled to India on official business in August 2014, a trip during which he met with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The Global Poverty Project, an advocacy organization that seeks to alleviate extreme poverty internationally, footed the bill, according to a spokesman for the group. 
But Schock's photographer and videographer, Jonathon Link, traveled with him on the trip, which was well-documented on Schock's Instagram account. The organization offered to pay for the costs of one staffer to accompany Schock as long as the staffer flew economy class, according to the spokesman. Another aide was originally going to come, but the organization noted they were looking for a photographer, and Schock suggested Link, with whom he has worked in the past, the spokesman said. The photos Link took were made available to both Schock and the Global Poverty Project. 
The problem is House rules allow a member to accept private money for a companion's travel expenses only if the companion is a staffer, spouse or child. Link was none of those; he didn't appear on Schock's official or campaign payroll until September 2014.

Furthermore, Schock never disclosed that Link accompanied him on the trip, according to a review of public records. Members are allowed to accept money from private sources for some travel as long as they disclose it, and they also are required by law to disclose in writing when someone accompanies them on a trip paid for by an outside organization. Members have to seek a waiver from the Ethics Committee to bring someone other than a staffer or family member. Otherwise, they must pay for the companion's trip out of pocket. 
Instead, a disclosure form filed by Schock after his return gives no indication that he was accompanied by Link. The Global Poverty Project paid $5,000 for travel, $525 for lodging, $300 for meals, $289 for travel insurance and $100 for ground transportation for Schock's travel. The trip took place August 24-29, with a round trip flight from Chicago to New Delhi and a visit to Mumbai, as well. 
The Global Poverty Project separately paid some $4,000 to fly Link from Dallas to New Delhi, and lodge and feed him, according to the group's spokesman.

At this point, Schock's starting to look like a sack of broken goods, and if the Dems can't put him down in 2016, they don't deserve to take the House back anytime soon.  We're not quite up to resignation status yet, but the campaign ads against him have written themselves.

Secret? Agent, Man...

The US Secret Service is at this point bravely straddling the border between phenomenal incompetence and having people openly question that they want to protect this President and his family.  That Washington Post report on two USSS agents driving drunk into a barricade was much, much worse than originally thought.

Two Secret Service agents suspected of driving under the influence andstriking a White House security barricade disrupted an active bomb investigation and may have driven over the suspicious package itself, according to current and former government officials familiar with the incident. 
These and other new details about the March 4 incident emerged Thursday from interviews and police records obtained by The Washington Post. 
The episode has prompted questions from lawmakers about whether the newly appointed leaders of the Secret Service are capable of turning around the troubled agency. Among the lawmakers’ questions: Whether a Secret Service supervisor, as witnesses have alleged, ordered officers to let the agents go home without facing sobriety testing. 
An investigation by the Department of Homeland Security’s inspector general is centering on the possible misconduct of two senior agents, including a top supervisor on President Obama’s protective detail.

These idiots got drunk and drove through a crime scene, driving over a possible explosive device in the process and then hitting a temporary barrier set up to protect people in case the device exploded. If the agency's leadership hadn't already been largely fired for gross incompetence, I'd demand that they were all rehired and fired over this massive screw-up.

The Obamas repeatedly get more threats than any First Family in US history, and the people who are supposed to protect them are drunken fratboy assholes.



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