Thursday, June 6, 2019

Last Call For It's The Economy, Dems

Here's why Joe Biden is ahead right now: white Democratic voters are almost solely concerned with health care and climate change, but for black and Hispanic Dems, it's health care and jobs as the Great Recession wiped out black and Hispanic wealth in 2007 and we're still dealing with that 12 years later.

A key base of support for the Democratic Party, black America, is lagging in its recovery from the recession and demanding more attention to economic issues than white voters. That divide could complicate presidential contenders’ attempts to woo African-American votes in 2020.

A decade after the financial crisis, with national employment below 4 percent and wage gains slowly accelerating for typical workers, white Democrats largely see economic issues as a lower priority, according to polling conducted for The New York Times by the online research firm SurveyMonkey. The opposite is true for African-Americans, who are struggling even as the economy is growing relatively fast, and who want candidates to focus on job creation above all else.

Black Democrats are more likely than white Democrats to say they benefit “less than most others” from the current economy. They are significantly more likely than whites to call jobs and the economy the most important issue facing the nation. White Democrats are significantly more likely to cite health care as the top issue, followed by the environment, with jobs a distant third.

The difference holds even when controlling for age, education, employment status and other voter traits that are not related to race.

“There has been an economic boom for some people but not enough people, and certainly not enough people who look like me,” said Joyce Wilson Harley, a survey respondent and former Democratic elected official in South Orange, N.J.

Ms. Harley, who is black, said she was doing fine financially. But she said she didn’t have to look far to see people who were struggling. And she said mainstream Democrats, including many presidential candidates, had focused too little on jobs, wages and other core economic issues. If Democrats were listening to black voters, she said, “you’d be hearing more about economic opportunities.”

“It’s almost like they don’t get it,” Ms. Harley, 68, said. “The black women who carry the party, we were ignored and really highly disrespected, and our issues weren’t as important to the Democrats as they should be given that we’re the base of the Democratic Party.”

And the guy whose stump speeches every time are about how Trump is wrecking jobs and how he wants to bring back the good things Obama did is winning because that's what black and Hispanic voters want to get fixed.

Yes, Joe Biden is bullshit on Anita Hill, he's bullshit on the Clinton Crime Bill, he's bullshit on the Hyde Amendment.  But he's got a lot of juice with black folk especially for being Obama's veep, and he's talking jobs that are passing us by in the era of Trump's white supremacist bullshit.

Next week Trump's Mexico tariffs go into effect.  That's going to be a direct tax on American consumers and the folks who can afford it the least are gonna be black and Hispanic.  I want to hear Democrats shouting this fact from the mountaintops.

Everyone says the economy is "good".  It's not.  It's getting worse, and quickly, for those of us on the margins.  Joe Biden, for all his patriarchal Good Catholic space-invading carcerial state garbage, actually seems to understand that the most.

The point is, if other Dems hit this same message?  Other Dems who were, you know, better candidates overall than Biden, without sliding into "we've got to win back white working class America!" territory?

There's your path.

The Reach To Impeach, Con't

Nancy Pelosi is not going to allow impeachment proceedings against Donald Trump anytime soon, and she's not giving an inch on the matter.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi told senior Democrats that she’d like to see President Donald Trump “in prison” as she clashed with House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler in a meeting on Tuesday night over whether to launch impeachment proceedings.

Pelosi met with Nadler (D-N.Y.) and several other top Democrats who are aggressively pursuing investigations against the president, according to multiple sources. Nadler and other committee leaders have been embroiled in a behind-the-scenes turf battle for weeks over ownership of the Democrats’ sprawling investigation into Trump.

Nadler pressed Pelosi to allow his committee to launch an impeachment inquiry against Trump — the second such request he’s made in recent weeks only to be rebuffed by the California Democrat and other senior leaders. Pelosi stood firm, reiterating that she isn’t open to the idea of impeaching Trump at this time.

“I don’t want to see him impeached, I want to see him in prison,” Pelosi said, according to multiple Democratic sources familiar with the meeting. Instead of impeachment, Pelosi still prefers to see Trump defeated at the ballot box and then prosecuted for his alleged crimes, according to the sources.
They said she was expressing solidarity with pro-impeachment Democrats who want to hold the president accountable while disputing the idea that it is now time to take that step. Pelosi has long argued that certain conditions must be met before Democrats begin impeachment — public support and strong bipartisan backing, neither of which have so far materialized.
Other Democrats said Pelosi’s comment wasn’t that surprising given her previous criticisms of the president, including saying Trump “is engaged in a cover-up,” that his staff and family should stage an intervention and that the president’s actions “are villainous to the Constitution of the United States.”

Ashley Etienne, a Pelosi spokeswoman said Pelosi and the chairmen “had a productive meeting about the state of play with the Mueller report. They agreed to keep all options on the table and continue to move forward with an aggressive hearing and legislative strategy, as early as next week, to address the president’s corruption and abuses of power uncovered in the report.”

Pelosi is counting on the House Democratic hearings this month to generate the kind of public support for impeachment.  FOX News won't cover them at all, of course, and who knows what Trump will do to knock the hearings off the front page?

We may already have the answer to that question.

The United Arab Emirates will present to U.N. Security Council members on Thursday the results of an investigation into attacks targeting four oil tanker vessels off the UAE coast last month, two diplomats said.

The diplomats, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the briefing was expected to take place at the UAE Mission to the United Nations at 3:30 p.m. EDT (1930 GMT). One diplomat said Saudi Arabia and Norway were also expected to take part in the briefing.

Abu Dhabi-based television channel Sky News Arabia first reported the briefing.

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton said on May 29 that the attacks were the work of “naval mines almost certainly from Iran”. Tehran denied the accusations.

The UAE wants a US war with Iran even more than John Bolton's mustache does.  Stay tuned.

Checking The Tech Wreck Spec, Con't

With both the Trump regime and House Democrats going after Big Tech, the corporate tech giants are already well into the counterattack, and it's money money money all the way down.

Faced with the growing possibility of antitrust actions and legislation to curb their power, four of the biggest technology companies are amassing an army of lobbyists as they prepare for what could be an epic fight over their futures. 
Initially slow to develop a presence in Washington, the tech giants — Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google — have rapidly built themselves into some of the largest players in the influence and access industry as they confront threats from the Trump administration and both parties on Capitol Hill. 
The four companies spent a combined $55 million on lobbying last year, doubling their combined spending of $27.4 million in 2016, and some are spending at a higher rate so far this year, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks lobbying and political contributions. That puts them on a par with long-established lobbying powerhouses like the defense, automobile and banking industries. 
As they have tracked increasing public and political discontent with their size, power, handling of user data and role in elections, the four companies have intensified their efforts to lure lobbyists with strong connections to the White House, the regulatory agencies, and Republicans and Democrats in Congress.

Of the 238 people registered to lobby for the four companies in the first three months of this year — both in-house employees and those on contract from lobbying and law firms — about 75 percent formerly served in the government or on political campaigns, according to an analysis of lobbying and employment records. Many worked in offices or for officials who could have a hand in deciding the course of the new governmental scrutiny. 
The influence campaigns encompass a broad range of activities, including calls on members of Congress, advertising, funding of think-tank research and efforts to get the attention of President Trump, whose on-again, off-again streak of economic populism is of particular concern to the big companies.

Last month, the industry lobbying group, the Internet Association, which represents Amazon, Facebook and Google, awarded its Internet Freedom Award to Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter and White House senior adviser.
“They are no longer upstarts dipping a toe in lobbying,” said Sheila Krumholz, the executive director of the Center for Responsive Politics. “They have both feet in.”

Considering the stock price hammering they got on Monday with announcement of Justice Department and House Judiciary Committee action against them was worth way more than $55 million, they'd consider straight purchase of lawmakers to be a hell of an investment.  And unlike the big banks and defense contractors, they have more money to burn.

This is going to get nasty, and quick.


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