Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Last Call For Shutdown All Around

With Congress back in session next week, zero spending bills passed, and one month to go before a federal government shutdown, the blame game is already beginning.

Who would you blame more for a government shutdown; the Republicans in Congress or Barack Obama and the Democrats in Congress?
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
Reps in Congress     41%     9%    77%    37%    40%    42%    50%    37%
Obama/Dems in Congrs 33     65      6     32     33     33     29     35
BOTH EQUALLY(VOL)    17     18     10     21     18     16     15     18
DK/NA                 9      8      8     10      9      9      5     11
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
Reps in Congress     46%    38%    43%    42%    35%    37%    36%    81%    39%
Obama/Dems in Congrs 25     30     36     39     37     39     38      4     29
BOTH EQUALLY(VOL)    20     23     13     10     20     15     17      8     23
DK/NA                 9      9      9      9      8      9      8      7      9

That makes sense, after all.  Hispanic voters and especially black voters blame the Republicans more (10 points and 77 points respectively).  College-educated Americans are also more likely to blame the GOP than the Dems (21 points) as are independents (5 points), Millenials (21 points) and Gen Xers (8 points).

In fact the only groups that blame Obama more are white voters and Republicans.

Gen Xers and Hispanic voters however are the most likely to blame both sides.  Hey, we remember the Clinton-era shutdown and the complete failure on immigration reform...wait, aren't those Republican problems too?

Go figure.

Bevin Bets Big On Bigotry

With two months to go before the election for governor here in Kentucky, Republican Matt Bevin has just thrown in his lot with Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis and the wrong side of history.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Matt Bevin rushed to defend Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis after she again refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples Tuesday morning. 
Bevin also scolded Democratic opponent, Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway, for failing to stand by the religious liberties of county clerks who oppose the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling legalizing same-sex marriage. 
“Jack Conway has failed to do his job as attorney general by refusing to defend Kentucky’s marriage amendment, and he is failing to defend the religious freedom of our Kentucky clerks,” Bevin said in a statement. 
The comments come amid an intense standoff at Davis's office where a gay couple sought to obtain a marriage license after the High Court rejected her last-ditch effort for a stay Monday. After a heated exchange between Davis and the couple, their attorneys filed a motion to find Davis in contempt of court for refusing to issue them a marriage license. 
In response, the Bevin campaign sought to tie Conway — who refused to appeal the initial federal ruling against the state's same-sex marriage ban last year — to the controversy in a series of Tweets. Bevin's campaign said the Democrat is refusing to defend the First Amendment rights of county clerks. 
"As attorney general, it's Jack Conway's job to defend the Constitutional rights of all Kentuckians, including county clerks," Bevin's Twitter account said.

I swear, for a while there I was afraid Matt Bevin wasn't this much of a moron.  He might actually find a way to lose this thing now.  If he had just said that this was a matter "for the courts" or "for the legislature" to deal with he could have gotten away with it.  It wouldn't be up to Bevin anyway to impeach and remove Davis from her office, and he doesn't make federal court decisions.

But by coming out squarely in the defense of an anti-gay bigot, Bevin has nowhere to hide now.  As Governor he'd be a national embarrassment to the Commonwealth, as it is we Kentuckians look like backwater hicks most of the time.

If Jack Conway can't find a way to bloody Bevin's nose over this and severely damage his campaign, then he's too incompetent for the job in Frankfort anyway.

Packaged For Consumption

Donald Trump is winning among Republicans because he's outright saying what the GOP has been dancing around: the "50-State Southern Strategy" has made it acceptable to spew outright racism to win Republican votes, and those falling behind in the crowded field of professional race-baiters have to give ever more ridiculous rhetoric to try to stay in the race.

Today's example is Chris Christie, all but given up for dead at this point, suggesting we "track" undocumented documents like FedEx packages.  And lest you think that I'm engaging in hyperbole, this is Christie's actual idea.

"I'm going to have Fred Smith, the founder of FedEx, come work for the government for three months. Just come for three months to Immigration and Customs Enforcement and show these people," the New Jersey governor said at a town hall event here.

Christie added that while FedEx can track boxes, the U.S. can't track undocumented immigrants.

"You go online and at any moment, FedEx can tell you where that package is," he said. "Yet we let people come into this country with visas, and the minute they come in, we lose track of them."

Christie added, "We need to have a system that tracks you from the moment you come in and then when your time is up," he said. "However long your visa is, then we go get you and tap you on the shoulder and say, 'Excuse me, it's time to go.'"

Perhaps we can track them with RFID chips.  Or satellites.  Or go old school and use tattoos and yellow stars to signify their status.

Smith is the father of Samantha Smith, a Christie spokeswoman.

Christie added that conversations about "anchor babies" make the Republican Party look unfairly hostile to immigrants.

"The entire conversation about 'anchor babies' is a distraction that makes us sound like we're anti-immigrant, and we're not," he said. "Our party is not that way. We want people to do it legally. Do it the right way."

We don't mind the "good ones".  But the rest are those people, and we have to dispose of them, you see.  Just tap them on the shoulder and round them up.  You know, I think a European guy had a pretty similar idea about 75 years ago about another group of people.

Didn't work out so well, if I recall my history.

Republicans are pretty bad at that whole history thing, however.

Exit question: What do privacy advocates have to say about this, especially the ones on the right?

Exit question #2:  How well is that particular thought of marking a group of people for later removal playing in Christie's home state of New Jersey?

Final exit question: How long before the rest of the GOP advocates this?


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